Orders now accepted by invitation only

Q. What just happened?

On April 1, 2013, I stopped accepting orders for Casascius Coins from the public. I switched my website so orders can only be placed by resellers with prior invitation. I recommend and encourage sales of Casascius Coins by resellers.

Q. Why did this happen?

Over the last month, Bitcoin has become a lot more interesting to the world. Bitcoin prices have skyrocketed. Interest in Casascius Coins has increased substantially for multiple reasons that are seemingly working as a “force multiplier”. While I’m very excited to see this has happened, for me to be able to satisfy the market demand for Casascius Coins, I will have to make some major changes to the way they are made and shipped.

The first change is that I will only sell coins to resellers in a wholesale setting. I will also only ship using Registered Mail (or similar).

Q. What are some of the changes that led you to arrive at this?

  • More people worldwide are interested in Bitcoin
  • More existing Bitcoiners can suddenly afford Casascius Coins
  • The security requirements to handle coins worth this much are quite simply far greater than when Bitcoins were worth $5 or $10. The same goes for the digital Bitcoins themselves.
  • Since Bitcoins are worth more, more customers are interested in registered/express shipping, and these take much longer to prepare.
  • Secondarily, but also exciting, the worldwide explosion in Bitcoin interest has also put me in a position where my value to the Bitcoin economy in terms of projects I can influence as a consultant is substantial. Producing coins by hand comes at a high opportunity cost. That’s not to suggest that Casascius Coins has not been influential – I’m thoroughly convinced it is – meanwhile, I need to put more effort into expanding production capacity and less into producing coins by hand.

Q. What does it take to get an invitation?

If you’ve ordered more than 100 coins in the past from me in a single order, I’m more than likely to extend one.

Delivery will probably take longer, however, I expect to be able to estimate delivery in advance.

Q. What does this mean for my existing orders?

This will not affect any existing orders, in fact, most orders have been shipped. All existing orders will be honored.

Q. What does this mean for silver coins?

I expect that I will sell the silver coins, when available, only in mint tubes of 20.

Q. Doesn’t this open you up for competition?

Yep – I expect it and welcome it. I am surprised that I’m the only one doing physical bitcoins right now. There is clearly a healthy market demand for them.

Just to be clear, my goals in producing Casascius Coins is to have a functional proof of concept coin that serves as a conversation piece, to help people visualize bitcoins and to spread the word. I don’t have any aspiration towards a monopoly on creating physical bitcoins.

Are you thinking of producing physical bitcoins? Do you have the resources to do any kind of mass production of a product like this and just need the magic that ensures that the product is a reliable functional physical bitcoin? Please contact me.

56 comments

  1. BTCbuyer · · Reply

    Oh boy. I was just looking at your page this morning, hoping to buy a Casascius coin in the next week directly from you. I only wanted to own one!

    This sucks. It’s a pretty big disappointment, at least in the short run.

  2. Interesting… your reasoning makes sense. I’ll be waiting for my invitation then, and you can expect some orders in the future!

  3. Phoenix · · Reply

    Please let us know who we can buy these from! I was going to buy the .999 10 BTC

  4. Facedown5150 · · Reply

    will you post a list of people we can buy from?

    1. Sure, there’s a list on my casascius.com site. Also, anyone who wants to be added to my list, let me know.

      1. Travis Smith · ·

        I can’t find the retailers on the site. Is there any place I can go to get them?

  5. driver45 · · Reply

    April fools or?

  6. Dan C. · · Reply

    Casascius,
    I would be interested in buying in bulk. Despite your plans to branch out, are you still planning on maintaining a steady supply chain for interested distributors through delegation?

    Your contribution to Bitcoin can not be understated. Easy physical face to face in person transfer of BTC is one of the most important aspect not inante in the software/coding that needed to be overcame, and you did it.

    1. Yes, definitely. I plan to keep producing them, and I am fully convinced that they are in many cases the icebreaker that gets someone talking about bitcoins and money, as well as the thing that helps everyday people visualize bitcoin as something other than a fleeting computer code that can evaporate on a whim. I am fully appreciative of the importance of the physical bitcoin project.

      Historically I have produced them in my home – doing so is no longer sensible with their current value and quantity demanded, if for nothing else, I don’t want to be a sitting duck for someone kicking down my door asking for them. I expect to stop doing so until I have a better place to do them and better procedures for being able to handle them securely while still being comfortable it’s not a security risk for me. I imagine the entire bitcoin community is going through the same growing pains.

  7. we want establish bitcoin business in Turkey and around arabic countries .

    we want a person visit us in Turkey – Istanbul city in may a few days and explain us bitcoin and business related bitcoin .

    Also we want produce physical bitcoin in Turkey . So we need you come here if possible and help us .

    After our meeting we will meet a few businessmen – finance – bank owners to invest this project .

    All cost we will pay ( travel – hotel , etc . )

    I hope we can establish good cooperation

    Regards

    Antuvan Dindisyan

    1. Dear sir…I have a colleague currently I’m neighboring baghdad who occasionally ventures through Istanbul. Though he isn’t involved with bitcoin per say there is a possibility I may need to travel there for work soon and am quite passionate about it. If your wishing to learn what Meager little I’ve been able to comprehend of this ingenious thing and your interested in benefiting mankind in some measurable way as opposed to only being interested in short term gain potential shoot me an email.

  8. So does this mean all production is currently stopped? Would like to purchase at bulk levels, but it sort of sounds like you have stopped and will resume at some point in the future when you’ve made alternate arrangements.

  9. Would it be possible to speak with you directly regarding this opportunity? I have numerous people in my area looking for hard coins and have orders ranging from 1-25. I could easily fill an order of 100 coins.
    Thanks.

  10. Vincent Wu · · Reply

    HI Casascius, you said to contact you if I had interest in producing them. I have interest and might have the means to do it, depending on the process. Can you shoot me an e-mail?

  11. Hello,
    I was in the process of placing an order when you took down the site.
    How would you deal with my situation, would I still be able to finish my order, and place orders in the future?

    Cheers

    1. To follow up discussion below, I am sorry to not have chosen to provide a personal response to this. I can understand how odd it must seem to see me seemingly blow off an inquiry like this, but then jump on your other post with promptness.

      To be clear, I received numerous inquiries from people interested in coins the day I stopped taking orders. And I either did not reply to most of them, or replied with a pasted response saying come here. I hoped that most recognize that I simply got swamped and became limited in my ability to respond, and accepted that when I posted to say I wasn’t taking orders, that that covered it.

      You did well in finding a soft spot in me though – call me greedy and base it on a claim I can debunk with crypto and you’ll have me baited to jump on it like a dog being teased with a steak!

      1. Enjoy your steak :)

      2. All is well,

        Your passion about your coins is obvious, and that’s a good thing, you are excused for jumping the gun.

        Regards

  12. Coin Collector · · Reply

    Hi Mike, I’m interested in buying 1BTC coins in bulk, however I never ordered with you before. Any chance to still get an invitation? Thanks in advance!

  13. How secure is the coin? What if someone make a photo of a coin and make a replica with the same public 8-character code? Or course the private key would be invalid.

  14. [...] his coins by himself, so now you can only obtain the physical coins through resellers, or through invites from Caldwell himself. However, if you trust auction sites, it’s easy enough to jump on eBay and find [...]

  15. [...] his coins by himself, so now you can only obtain the physical coins through resellers, or through invites from Caldwell himself. However, if you trust auction sites, it’s easy enough to jump on eBay and find [...]

  16. [...] his coins by himself, so now you can only obtain the physical coins through resellers, or through invites from Caldwell himself. However, if you trust auction sites, it’s easy enough to jump on eBay and find [...]

  17. Dan Spjuth · · Reply

    I am glad that I was able to order coins from you before it got to big. Hmm, maybe I should start to sell physical bitcoins myself :)

  18. Andrew Boyes · · Reply

    Hi looking to buy please invite me not a time waster

  19. Henry Smither · · Reply

    so glad i got my 10 casascius bitcoins from you over a year ago, when they were less than £2 each! Win!

  20. I was planning to buy a bulk number of 1BTC coins (10-20) and 4 or more 25BTC coins and when I finally decided to place an order I was very disappointed to see that I no longer can order coins from you.

    The reason that I was planning to buy them from you and not from one of your resellers were:

    1) The bulk prices – you had very reasonable prices for 1 BTC coins if I was going to buy eg. 20 pieces. Now I would have to pay 30 BTC for those 20 coins which is just not acceptable – a 50% overhead. The same goes for 25BTC coins. Your resellers take 30BTC for them which means that I would have to pay almost $5500 USD more than the actual BTC value just for 8 coins which is also way too much.

    2) You charged the coins with BTC after they were shipped to minimize the value in transit – as I understand it no reseller will ever be able to do it for several reasons. This is a show-stopper for anyone importing coins across borders.

    3) Trust – you have a great reputation and if I am going to send large amount of BTC to someone then I need great reputation. Not merely good reputation but great, like yours.

    Those are the reasons why I will not buy your coins from your resellers after carefully examining their offers. I’m sure that I am not the only one who feels that way.

    I really hope that you will open your store but maybe set a minimum purchase value of eg. 50BTC or 100BTC, or a certain number of coins, or whatever would be in your opinion considered a bulk purchase, but I hope you will offer the bulk prices that you had before you closed your store and charge the coins addresses with BTC after they are shipped.

    Buying one 1BTC coin for 1.5BTC may not sound that bad for a nice novelty but if the coins are ever going to be used in person-to-person transactions than they can’t cost so much more than the BTC value they represent. Your bulk prices was perfectly reasonable. The prices of your resellers are not, unfortunately.

    If you are not going to open your store to general public than please tell me if it is possible for me to get an invitation to buy a bulk number of coins if I have never bought coins from you before.

    Thank you.

  21. God damn it!

    I was about to order some coins! :P

    What you need are links to good resellers.

    I’m keen for the new 2013 series!

  22. I want an invite for Bitcoins .. kindly mail me when its feasible.

  23. kindly share an invite for Bitcoins .. kindly mail me when its feasible.
    I want to be reseller in India :)

  24. Bitcoincreator.com is for sale! Contact webaster(at)dietzer.com

    1. I didn’t create Bitcoin so I have little use for this, but will post your info in case Satoshi visits

      1. please do look forward to that ,,thanks

  25. I have Casascius coins for sale if anyone would like to contact me directly you can reach me at liveloudnlocal@gmail.com my name is Adam and thank you.

    I have 67 single coins available and 10 Five BTC coins available.

  26. Scarecrow · · Reply

    Well this sucks, now the re-sellers are jacking up the price…
    I just came on to order a roll so i can print off my own but there doesn’t seem to be any that even have that, just people selling coins at 300+ GBP.

  27. [...] his coins by himself, so now you can only obtain the physical coins through resellers, or through invites from Caldwell himself. However, if you trust auction sites, it’s easy enough to jump on eBay and find [...]

  28. So we can no longer custom order Bitcoins? That’s a little sad. The more you get the word out and “advertise” with the coins as it were, the better. Ill check in occasionally to see what’s new. Your $25 Bitcoins are very attractive unlike some others I’ve seen.

  29. Also a good option for small order in Germany or Europe: contact vv01f in bitcointalk forums.
    He also made payment modules for online shops…

  30. I would like to order some empty coins with holograms, or just some empty coins.
    Earlier they were available on the web site for order.
    How can I obtain them now?

    1. I am no longer offering these as now due to the increase in popularity, people are likely to be confused by them (case in point). I will be offering some distinctive blanks for this purpose soon.

  31. Well this sucks. I wanted to get a physical Bitcoin, but now I can’t. And those resellers? They sell them for as much as $350 for a 1 BTC coin! So whether it was intentional or not, you HAVE placed a monopoly on physical Bitcoins.

    1. It’s the way of the world, whenever there is more money to be made people will get greedy.
      I placed an order right before the site shut done, and he wouldn’t honor it, or respond to my messages just to make more money.
      Don’t worry though, other’s are catching up, and small companies are being set up to produce physical bitcoins, then it won’t be a monopoly anymore!
      That’s if the bubble doesn’t burst and people that purchased at a high price lose the value of their coins!

      1. I have agreed to honor all orders placed before I stopped taking them, and this is the first I have ever heard anyone claim I have failed to do so.

        So… how does this terrible story continue? Did you pay me for an order and I insisted on giving you an unwanted refund? How did I accomplish this? How did I greedily force these unwanted bitcoins back into your wallet without your consent?

        This is why I love cryptography, because I can confidently tell you to either show the proof or GTFO. I can’t find your provided gmail address, nor the string “Rabih”, in any record in my order system anywhere. Nevertheless, if your assertion is true, you’ll be able to look in your e-mail and provide the PGP-signed message from me telling you what address to pay for your order, and there will be a record on the block chain where you paid around April 1. If not, I guess nobody will hear from you about this again, and you can go pick on somebody else!

        Please accept my apologies in advance if you have somehow ordered from me and I have not delivered. It’s quite possible I’ve missed inquiries by e-mail, but I absolutely have not refused to honor orders. I will need your order number, or order address, or something to help me identify the order.

        And to everyone else – being able to provably defend oneself from claims like this is one of the benefits of sticking to a policy of “I will not ask you to pay me at any Bitcoin address that is not digitally signed”.

      2. Hello casascius,

        Interesting that it only took you a couple of hours to respond to this reply, it shows that you read the thread.
        On the other hand, you chose to ignore the last two questions that I left weeks ago when the incident happened. I explained that I was in the process of placing the order when you took the site down.

        I am not going to disclose my personal info on a thread, and there is no way for me to contact you.

        In any case, your response ” GTFO” is very professional!

        I wish you the best with your business, and I absolutely have no more interest in your product, even if you are willing to honor my order.

        Again, good luck with everything, and if you like, you can delete all this conversation, and my two previous comments. My intention is not to be negative, it was merely to get your attention about my issue.

        I have no interest in causing conflict, nor starting an argument, if you read my last two comments, you would understand my issue, but it’s all good. I am not even looking for a resolution after your response.

        Thank you and Regards

      3. Rabih,

        Thanks for the reply back. I’m not going to delete the conversation, because I think it demonstrates a worthy point I’m passionate about. I appreciate the opportunity and the inspiration you’ve given me to get up on a soapbox for a minute and make a point. Just to be clear, the point isn’t so much “I think I’m right, and I just proved a stranger on the internet wrong, woo hoo!”.

        Rather, the part I am so giddy about, is that crypto is once again shown to be a powerful impartial tool that’s useful for keeping people honest. I dream of the day that cryptography becomes a pillar in society that helps “us the people” keep our leaders and institutions honest, not just people leaving comments on somebody’s internet blog.

        In this particular case, over the course of your two posts your position went from “I placed an order right before the site shut down” (and claiming my refusal to honor it as evidence of greed), to being “in the process of placing the order” (and apparently being unable to complete it)… two profoundly different things. The courtesy of clarifying that isn’t something you’d have volunteered had I not called you out on it, particularly as you continue to make statements questioning my character and motives.

        On the one hand, it’s understandable how you now wouldn’t want me knowing your name and address. On the other hand, even if I had it, I value your privacy, and I don’t consider this to be worthy of violating it, so unless “Rabih” is enough to identify you uniquely, that’s all anyone is ever going to know of who you are.

        Imagine the day when our politicians are forced to be honest because our society knows to demand of them to act in a way where their actions can be verified cryptographically and where their performance and activity in the public interest can either be proven or disproven unequivocally. Imagine we used crypto to fundamentally change the way we vote our leaders into office so they are are accountable for the entire duration of their terms and not just the months and years leading up to their re-election.

        Imagine we as society had the collective balls to say to our presidents, congressmen, and other leaders, to either put out or GTFO, when crypto-based tools help citizens distinguish those acting with integrity from those stretching things and playing games with our common good. That’s a bright and sunny day I’m looking forward to, it’s a real possibility that cryptography can bring to us, and Bitcoin is just one golden brick paving the way there!

      4. Anything that floats your boat!!
        Crypto, politics, sunny days, paranoia………..you name it buddy, just be happy o_0

        All I wanted was a couple of coins for my personal collection……….trust, it’s not a government conspiracy!!!!

        I’m going to peace out now.
        I’m sure you’ll continue the conversation by yourself.

      5. Rabih,

        If you think that I have got you confused with a government conspiracy, then you probably have no idea why I’d go off and rant like that in the first place, and you probably have no idea why I’d find your comment about greed/monopoly/competition upsetting. I think you may have no idea why I ever started producing these coins in the first place. Which is OK, an honest misunderstanding at best.

        You may be interested to know that I have created and published the tools for producing physical bitcoins and given them away for free (google Casascius Bitcoin Address Utility), and thus have probably done more to help my up and coming competition produce physical bitcoins than anybody else alive. I sincerely hope for my competition to come up and undercut my price and will be happy to see them use my own tools to do it. I want physical bitcoins to exist – I don’t feel I should be the only producer of them, and I insist that someone else can do a better job of making them than me.

        Look, if your e-mail address you submitted to the blog was valid, then I sent you an e-mail with my contact information and a code (which is a number I honestly just made up). I will give you a 1BTC and 0.5BTC coin for free. That’s right, absolutely free. You don’t have to tell me who you are as long as that gmail address is valid and you can receive mail at it – you can give the code away, have someone else collect it, submit somebody else’s name and address, I don’t care. I don’t need to know if I’m sending it to you or someone else and I will simply assume the name and address I’m sending it to isn’t you. It will come in an envelope that simply contains the two coins and my business card, and nothing else. The first person to e-mail me an address with the code I’m sending you will receive these two coins in the mail, no questions asked. Thanks for the tasty steak.

      6. Hi Casascius,

        Just sent you an email.

        We started out on the wrong foot, and we misunderstood each other. I absolutely understand why you produce these coins, and I love what they stand for in our day and time, and know what they are trying to establish in this corrupt system that we have.
        The logic does not escape me.

        The same way you got upset about some comments I made, I got upset too about some remarks you made towards me personally. I wasn’t playing any games, it was an honest mistake. As I mentioned before, I am a peaceful guy, and I don’t like conflict.

        My remarks towards you where not fair, and I admit that it was an immature reaction to the fact that you did not reply to my comments. The reason why I did it is that I really love your coins, and wanted a couple for my personal collection, since I collect all kinds of coins, one of my favorite hobbies.

        My wishing you luck in my previous comments was no sarcasm. I truly wish luck and happiness even with those that I argue with.

        Life is too short for conflict.

        I’m glad you found the steak tasty :)

        Sincerely,
        Rabih

        That is no way to have a conversation, especially that at the end of the day, it turns out that we stand for the same thing.

      7. Thanks, I will forgive and forget, and will admit that once in a while I like (t)rolling around in the mud myself and apologize for jerking you around. I suppose I’m anticipating your shipping info shortly, and glad you see what the fuss about Bitcoin is all about.

  32. Can you tell me the exact number of produced coins from the first series (2011, I think)?
    You know: those with an error in the spelling of your name!
    Thanks in advance,
    marcus

    1. I can give guesstimates:

      11000 coin blanks and 11000 holograms were made in the first batch. These said 2011 and had the error.

      1000 of each were likely ruined and discarded in experimentation as the production process was refined

      I stopped most usage of the spelling error holograms as soon as I got the windowed ones to replace them but continued to sell the remaining error stock that I had made. So, only a few thousand 2011 coins have the error and the rest of the 2011 coins have the windowed sticker.

      I used the error hologram on some 5 and 25 BTC coins as well. This is because the error hologram has no denomination on it and was the only thing I had available until I got holograms that actually said 5 or 25 BTC on them. (Did not want to use holograms saying “one BTC” on a different value coin at any cost, would rather have a spelling error)

  33. David Gump · · Reply

    We would be most interested in the distinctive blanks.

  34. Hi Casascius! I
    I would like to buy 100 or 150 coins 1btc.

    I would also like to receive information about the conditions to produce coins.

    thanks
     
    hoyodavid (@) gmail.com

    1. I am as of now offering rolls of 50 on my website.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 69 other followers

%d bloggers like this: