In fact, it is an old, old story that there is counterfeit of almost everything under the globe, gold, ingots, coins, bars and precious metals generally are not exempted. It is an open secret of fake coins emanating from Asia and gold bar drilled and filled with Tungsten.
In view of the above, you need to exercise due care and diligence when investing in gold bullion so that you don’t throw your money in river Tame (London). The highlighted strategies will go a long way to ensure you are buying a real gold if you strictly adhere to same.
1. Reputable and knowledgeable dealers. Actually, your first and best precaution and security is to buy gold from core professionals in this business. The leading exponents in this business has high quality standard and internal control/screening mechanisms back-up by time-tested customer oriented service delivery.
In the USA and Europe, there are many gold bullion merchants with clean track records, some are BBB certified. To mention but few, we have merchants like American Bullion, Money Metals, Regal Asset, Capital Gold Group, Gold Direct etc.
2. Magnet test (gold and silver). These are non-magnetic substance, coin and gold easily slides-off on strong magnet whereas counterfeit coin and gold sticks to strong magnet. It should be noted that this test must be used in confluence with others, because the base metal used in some counterfeit are non-magnetic.
3. Acidic test. Inexpensive acid test kits can be used on gold and silver. Just apply drop of this acid on sample of gold, if the colour changes that means it is not authentic.
The bullion value of the metal content is most important and not beauty, that been said, you still need to exercise extra care in applying the acid otherwise discolouration can drastically reduce the value (price).
4. The weight and size. Actually, gold and silver are super dense metals, much denser than base metal. Therefore, all fakes that weighs accurately will have thicker diameter or under-weight to have the right diameter.
Alternatively, inexpensive caliper or jeweler’s scale can be used to affirm the weight, diameter and thickness of these precious metals to ensure that they conform to specified standard.
5. Ping or sound test. Real gold and silver coins chime when struck with another. The fact remains that base metal coins sound duller and the ringing is shorter, you can balance the coin on your fingertip and strike with another to hear the sound.
Investors using iPhone can install Coin Trust application while android users can likewise install Bullion Test application. The iPhone can be used to test most common gold and silver coins, switch-on the speaker. Put the phone close-by and easily spinning the coins on hard surface. In same vein, after installing the bullion test application choose coins from the list and press microphone button, balance the coins on your fingertips and strike with another coin, your result will be instant and accurate.
6. Thermal conductivity
(silver). Silver is one of the best conductors of heat energy. You can
test silver bullion by using an ice cube, apply heat when you place the
ice cube on top of coin or bar, instantly will see that the silver is
melting and cool speedily when removed from heat.