Buying Silver Bars: How To Tell If Silver Bars Are Fake

Buying Silver Bars: How To Tell If Silver Bars Are Fake

It’s common for some dealers to try and sell fake silver bars. In most cases, the dealers take a lead bar and coat it with silver such that it’s impossible for an average purchaser to know the difference between fake and real bars.

To avoid wasting your money on fake bars, here are some of the ways in which you can identify the fake silver bars:

Look at the stamp

Any item advertised as silver usually has a stamp that gives the amount of silver content. For example, there is silver stamped as 925, 900, or 800. These numbers indicate the percentage of fine silver in the piece.

If you are having problems seeing the stamp you should use a magnifying glass. If there is no stamp, you should not buy the bar.

Inspect the bar thoroughly

You should inspect the bar for any signs that show that it has been removed and reattached. To easily identify the reattached areas, you should take a look at the ends of the bar.

When inspecting the bar you should remember that many professionals use expensive machinery to reattach the ends and refill the fill-holes which makes it hard to know that the bars are fake.

Test using a rare-earth magnet

While silver can’t be picked with a magnet, there is usually a special interaction between silver and the rare-earth magnet. To test you should tip the suspected bar at a 45-degree angle and then place the magnet on top of the bar.

If the bar is pure silver, the magnet should slide down slowly; however, if the bar has been altered, it will slide down fairly quickly.

Does an ice test

You should place the ice directly on the silver and you should not take your eyes off of it. Since silver has a high thermal conductivity, the ice should start melting immediately. If the ice takes time to start melting, chances are that it’s fake.

Do ring test

You need to place the suspect bar in a plastic baggie and then lift and hold the baggie by one corner so that the bar hangs as freely as possible. At this position you should tap the bar using a hammer.

If the bar is real, it should make a high-pitched ringing sound that should last for one or two seconds; however, if the bar is fake, it should make a deeper sound and will not ring as long.

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