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Silver Eagle Dollar - Distinguishing a Fake from Real

 


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These days, more and more people are getting involved in coin collecting as a serious business, or as a fun hobby. To answer the growing demand of people looking for rare and valuable old coins, a lot of coin dealers are selling these coins. Sad to say, though, that this has been an outlet for a lot of counterfeiters out there.

To guide you in buying a real Silver Eagle dollar, this article will provide interesting facts about the official silver bullion coin of the United States, the American Silver Eagle, and some ways to distinguish a real one from a counterfeit.

What is the American Silver Eagle?

The Silver Eagle dollar was first released by the U. S. Mint on November 24, 1986. It contains one troy ounce of .999 pure silver, and has a nominal face value of one dollar. Its weight and content is certified by the U. S. Mint and it is authorized by the U. S. Congress. For coin collectors, the U. S. Mint produces a proof version of the coin.

The Silver Eagle dollar has been produced at three minting locations, including Philadelphia ('P’ mintmark), San Francisco ('S’ mintmark) which issued proofs, and more recent proofs from West Point.

Physical Descriptions

An authentic Silver Eagle dollar will weigh 31.103 grams, and its diameter is 40.60 mm, with a thickness of 2.98 mm. Its edge must be reeded, and the Silver content is 99.9%. The obverse design features Liberty walking and is adapted from the design of Adolph A. Weinman during the year 1916. The reverse design features a Heraldic Eagle with Shield, which was designed by John Mercanti on the year1986.

How do I tell if a Silver Eagle is fake?

  • Check the year of minting

    By knowing the minting years of a coin, you are one step closer to identifying a fake from a real coin. The Silver Eagle was minted on the year 1986. So if you see one for sale that has the year 1906 or any year that is before 1986, then consider it fake. It wasn't the U. S. Mint that made the coin. Save yourself the money and don't buy it.

  • Weigh it

    If you're equipped with knowledge about the coin, you're better to discriminate one from a fake. A true Silver Eagle dollar will weigh 31.103 grams. Also consider the diameter. Remember it should be 40.66 mm, not anything lower or higher than that. So, even if your coin ‘looks’ real, weight it to see if it really is.

  • Appearance

    A fake Silver Eagle is dull, grayish looking, and not lustrous. It could also have a soapy appearance to it.

  • Check the reeding

    Remember that an authentic Silver Eagle is reeded, so if you happen by one that is not, skip it. It's fake.

  • Test

    You can perform the drop test, and listen to its distinctive ring. If you drop it and it produces a dink sound, then this is most likely not silver. Keep in mind that a Silver Eagle is 99.9% silver. You can also do the magnetic test, where if the coin is attracted to the magnet, then it is not real. It is probably copper made to look ‘silver’.

    As a whole, distinguishing a real from a fake Silver Eagle is easy, for as long as you are equipped with relevant information about the coin.

    Find out more about American Eagle Silver Dollar coins and other types of U. S. minted silver dollars at: http://www.SilverDollarCoins.Info

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