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Are Counterfeit Coins in Your Collection? - ArticleSanbox.com
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Are Counterfeit Coins in Your Collection?

  Posted By: Vincent.Russo   |   Views: 1706  |   Words: 652  |   PDF View   |   Print View   |  HTML Version
  
 
Rare coin collecting can be a thrilling and rewarding experience. The feeling of holding a piece of the past is priceless and the potential for profit can be amazing. But with the great potential for pay off comes the possibility of counterfeit coins.

Counterfeiters of collectible rare coins will generally focus on those rare enough to make a good profit. Forgery rates also rise when precious metal prices are high. In the 1980s, when gold and silver prices peaked, nearly 90 percent of U.S. gold coins submitted to grading services for authentication were determined to be fakes. The only preventive measure against counterfeit coins is proper authentication.

When it comes to rare coin authentication, there is no substitute for experience. The key to detecting counterfeit or altered coins comes down to knowledge. Knowing the characteristics of the genuine rare coins and the marks of a fake will help you weed out counterfeits.

The first step to insuring you don’t fall prey to a counterfeiter is by not purchasing from unknown, online dealers or auctions. Making a business appear professional and reliable online is very simple. Feedback and testimonials can easily be faked, and domains can be taken down quickly and started over under a different URL. Never purchase a “rare coin” at a swap meet or pawn shop, even if they swear it has been graded. To avoid being victimized by a counterfeit coin, it is best to only purchase coins that have been independently examined, graded, and encapsulated in tamper-proof holders. Even then, forgers can find a way to replicate a proper grading.

The most common method of counterfeiting is casting copies by pouring molten metal into molds of the rare coin. Coins made this way are easy to distinguish because the mold leaves a seamed-casting mark that runs around the outside edge of the coin. Some counterfeiters try to remove this edge, but it causes other blemishes that can identify the “rare coin” as a fake.

The reeding, or bumps on the outer edge of the coin, are also tell-tale signs of a forged coin. These bumps should be distinct and even. Botched reeding will be uneven, or missing all together, and the edge may seem thicker than it should be. Don’t be fooled if the counterfeiter says the detail problems are just from circulation handling. Counterfeit marks are different from circulation damage, which is often unnoticeable.

One method used to guarantee a rare coin is genuine is the “ring test.” Counterfeit coins will often not sound the same as a true collectible. When gently held and struck softly with a pencil or pen, a genuine rare coin will typically produce a high-pitched almost musical ring. Most cast, electrotypes, and forged copies will only produce a dull "thud" or "clunking” sound.

The “magnet test” can also be used to help spot a fake. Since only one circulating U.S. coin has ever been cast of material that can be attracted by a magnet (the 1943 steel penny), virtually any U.S. coin that sticks to a magnet is a counterfeit.

For true assurance, an expert will need to be consulted. A coin grading service will put a guarantee on coins they believe are legitimate, and offer a certificate of authentication. But high-end forgers sometimes work in tandem with an illegitimate grading service to fake certificates. You should only purchase from recognized, trustworthy rare coin dealers to be completely confident that your rare coin is the real deal.

The United States Gold Bureau is the leading authority on all things related to precious metals. Their professionals have more than 100 years combined experience is precious metals and rare coin collecting. All coins from the United States Gold Bureau is backed in weight and purity by the U.S. Government. Fakes can easily slip by even the most avid rare coin enthusiast, but when buying from the United States Gold Bureau, you can trust your rare coins are real.



About the Author

Brigette Botkin. Rare Coin - United States Gold Bureau LLC is a private company that distributes United States Minted Gold Silver and Platinum Coins. USGB LLC is dedicated to educating the public on the benefits of owning Gold Silver and Platinum coins as away of safe guarding assets and creating Legacy Wealth for ones Family.

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