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Precious metal testing


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3 hours ago, Crabby said:

Seen some very expensive metal testing machines  out there, are their any that are sub 300 quid ?


Possibly not, or at least not anything with any great degree of accuracy and ease of use.



1) A neodymium magnet would cost a few pounds. Precious metals are not ferro-magnetic, and neither are most of their alloys.

2) Scales. Reasonable electronic balances now cost under £10.

3) Measuring devices. A ruler would cost very little, or a caliper gauge would be more accurate, and cost about £10.

4) A pack of acids, or a precious metal testing kit, would cost about £30 + or -, from a jewellers' supplier.

5) You could do your own cupelation by buying some cupels (£1+-), a blowtorch (£10+-), or a furnace (from $125 on Alibaba).

6) "Ping" test ap for mobile phone (free). Limited results.

7) Fisch, or similar, gauge, from $200.

Eight) (TSF converts 8 followed by a right bracket to an emoji). A drill. Most people probably already own one. Practical, reliable, but somewhat destructive.

9) Probably a whole lot more I have missed out.



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Nothing I know of retails for under £300. The Fisch is good, as Mr. Chard mentioned. It's not a machine per se, but rather an inert measuring tool that verifies the size, shape, and weight of popular coins. It has depressions and slots in which to place the coin to verify its dimensions, and a carefully designed platform to set the coin and test its weight. The combination of precise dimensions and weight provides a high confidence of authenticity – most fakes won't pass.

They go for about $200. The caveats are that they're designed for a specific set of popular coins due to the need for exact precision with the dimensions. There are several different Fisch models, some for silver coins, some for gold coins. Each model covers a specified handful of coins. A popular model in North America is the one that covers both Eagles and Maples.

The weight test is discrete and binary. The Fisch is designed like a seesaw or pendulum scale, where when you place a coin weighing exactly one Troy ounce on the marked area, the Fisch balances or something, while any deviation from that target weight will yield a failing result. There might be Fisches for 10 oz bars, but I haven't checked.

There's also a competing device costing a bit less. I forget the name, but it's generic sounding like "The Silver Coin Tester" or similar. It's essentially identical to the Fisch in its approach, with the slots and the carefully calibrated balancing for the target weight.

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