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How to detect counterfeit coins

Uninformed purchasers run the very real risk of buying fake coins even though counterfeits make up a relatively small percentage of the overall coin market. In order to ensure that you don’t buy fake coins, do as much research as you possibly can before making a purchase.

pouch of antique silver coins

Protect yourself

You will help yourself out greatly if just do some research into the coins that you want to buy. Collectors will be able to discover what the approximate value of a specific coin is. You will be able to ascertain if a price is fair or not. In addition, consider the old saying; “if it’s too good to be true, it probably is”. Simply being in the possession of a major grading service holder is no guarantee that the coin is authentic, so be sure to trust, but verify. The people who have them may not even be aware that they have a counterfeit coin. The surest way to protect yourself from acquiring fraudulent coins is to purchase them from knowledgeable coin dealers with good reputations.

Watch and listen

Occasionally, viewing authentic gold and silver coins right next to counterfeit ones can reveal clear differences. A coin’s quality is indicative of its authenticity. Fake coins don’t always look shiny or dull. Alternatively, the coin could appear to be overly shiny, as well. The majority of the time you find flaws in the coin, and it will not look like it’s been pressed but cast. A cast or mold is generally used to make a replica of a valuable coin. While you’re scrutinizing a coin to buy, drop it on a counter or tap it with another coin and take notice of the sound it makes.

Does it have a similar ring to a real coin? Also, fake coins are typically not as hard as genuine coins. We all are aware of the old saying about biting a coin to see if it is real. Unless you are a cartoon character, it is not advisable to try that. Taking a coin to a reputable dealer to verify its authenticity is the best way to ensure that it is not counterfeit. Highly valued coins that have been forged will have telling characteristics, such as not being heavy enough, being the wrong thickness or made of the wrong materials. And since they are produced with an inauthentic substance, they will almost always have the wrong look, sound or feel.

What should you do if you’ve made the mistake of purchasing an inauthentic coin? Unless the dealer guarantees that the coin is authentic, don’t purchase the coin. Ordinarily it will be accompanied by a certificate stating that it is authentic. Of course, there are some who make the conscious choice to collect select well-known fake coins simply because of their notoriety.


To produce truly convincing copies, a person would have to invest the time, effort, and money necessary to obtain a modern coining press. However, it’s possible that the everyday coin collector might never be exposed to fake rare coins. The most rare and valuable coins, those affordable to only a handful of the most well-heeled collectors, are typically the target of the majority of counterfeiters.

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