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Jbay76 (< 20)

Insights into PM purchases



November 12, 2010 – Comments (15) | RELATED TICKERS: HL , EXK

So, after having read Abitrares' blog on silver and crashing JP Morgan, I have decided that its high time to get involved.  Incidentally, I did just get shares of both EXK and HL in the recent past and am in no way feeling bummed on the market sell off that has me reeling a temporary loss on those purchases. The question is, what type of silver is best to purchase, and from whom?  Is better than for purchasing silver?  Is there a better place to go?


And whats better, silver bullion bars or coins?  Are Canadian Silver maple Leaf's better than theSilver American Eagles?  Are Engelhard bars better to own than others?  Is it purely subjective and in the end, .9999% silver is .99999% regardless of who makes it and stamps their seal on it?  And what about long-term oxidative effects on the metal?  Does that ruin its value?


Truly newbee questions, but you have to start somewhere, and if the answers can't be found on TMF, we's screwed.  Though I am sure answers lurk within these thanks in advance!


15 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On November 12, 2010 at 4:27 PM, 100ozRound (28.65) wrote:

First of all, I use for nearly all of my bullion purchases.

gub'ment issued bullion tends to be better than private mint but they also carry higher premiums. They are also more widely accepted and you will generally get some of your premium back on resale.

I have a pretty good blend of generic silver and the legal tender stuff.  I have American Eagles, Philharmonics, and Maple Leaves as well as a variety of Perth Mint stuff.  Stay away from numismatic stuff unless you want to become a collector, because the coins go for more than what the bullion inside them is worth.

I think your best bet is to start off with some "junk" silver which is pre-1965 american coins - they are 90% silver.

The oxidative stress is also called toning.  It can in some ways add to the value of the coins.  Some collectors like it, some don't. 

Really you can't go wrong with whatever you buy but definitely do your DD when shopping for a vendor.

I'd recommend shopping around before you buy from apmex.  I don't think you'll get a better deal but you will definitely see apmex's value.  Their service and shipping speed is awesome.


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#2) On November 12, 2010 at 4:36 PM, davejh23 (< 20) wrote:

I just bought a nice set of silverware at Bed, Bath & Beyond.  It cost $40, and I'm guessing that the entire set weighs about 40, even with prices down recently, I still made a killing...I'll probably go get some more today...

Make sure it has "SS" stamped on it...I believe this means "sterling silver".

I'm just kidding, of course.  I don't know anything about silver.

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#3) On November 12, 2010 at 4:37 PM, Jbay76 (< 20) wrote:

Thansk 100ozRound for the info!  Now, what do you mean by "numismatic stuff" and once I decide to sell it, who do I look for to sell it? Collectors?  Banks?  This is assuming that the world as we know it doesn't turn to sh*t.



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#4) On November 12, 2010 at 4:48 PM, Jbay76 (< 20) wrote:

Funny davejh23... I hope you used the 20% off coupon for BBB...then you would have made a true killing

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#5) On November 12, 2010 at 5:03 PM, rd80 (95.72) wrote:

I ordered some 1 oz. silver rounds from Northwest Territorial Mint about 6 weeks ago.  They're back logged and the silver isn't due to be delivered for another week or two, but the price was locked at time of order.  If I wanted, I could call them and sell the order back at current spot price.

For the amount I ordered, their price beat Apmex or Monex, but not by much.

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#6) On November 12, 2010 at 5:15 PM, 100ozRound (28.65) wrote:

Numismatics is a fancy word for collectible coins.  Old coins with varying grades and whatnot. An uncirculated 1890 Morgan dollar would qualify as a numismatic coin. 

Apmex will buy it back as well as most coin dealers and pawn shops.  I wouldn't recommend the pawn shop unless its a very dire emergency as you probably wouldn't get full value.


Russ, I ordered from NWT mint back in '08 and it took 5 months to take delivery!  I was concerned about my order the whole time. I ordered some Pan American bars and rounds.  They're nice but I don't think I'd buy from them again because it took so long to get them.

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#7) On November 12, 2010 at 5:51 PM, Speed03 (< 20) wrote:

I purchase my silver from First Majestic:

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#8) On November 12, 2010 at 7:47 PM, tomlongrpv (61.88) wrote:

If and when I buy silver and gold it will be the edible kind.  See the link below.   At least that way I will have some use for it.  In the meantime, if I feel everything is headed for collapse I'll buy guns, ammunition, medicines, freeze dried food, water purifiers, and a good pickup truck.  Few of us are assayers and hence the silver and gold are worthless for the very purpose they are being bought for--to hedge against economic collapse.

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#9) On November 12, 2010 at 8:33 PM, 100ozRound (28.65) wrote:

Don't feed the troll

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#10) On November 12, 2010 at 9:35 PM, ChrisGraley (28.63) wrote:

100oz round gave you a ton of great info. I would personally stay away from coins for their numismatic value. A lot of times the numismatic value goes down as the price of silver is going up. You can't always count on getting the extra premium paid when you sell it.

tom's a politician that doesn't want to admit that his political views are destroying the economy, so he results to mocking people dealing with the mess he helped make.

As far as who's silver to buy, I don't feel it matters too much. I try to get as close to whatever the spot silver price as I can and I try to buy silver from places that I trust. Believe it or not there is counterfeit silver out there. If you don't recognize a coin or a stamp on bullion, you could be buying junk. The Chinese have been counterfeiting silver coins for years. There is an acid test you can use and it's pretty easy to check bar dimensions and density.

Silver is actually pretty durable and oxidation can be removed pretty easily with silver polish when it occurs.

The junk silver idea was a great suggestion for someone new to buying it. You have a lot less to worry about buying junk silver other than maybe storing it if you are buying a lot. 

Ask whatever questions you want on the subject here. There are a ton of very knowledgeable people on PM's here. 


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#11) On November 12, 2010 at 9:55 PM, BillyTG (29.53) wrote:

Consider looking up a local coin shop.  That's where I buy and pay about 2% less than what I see on  Additonally, you can see and feel what you're purchasing, ask questions in person, usually to employees that have troy tons of PM experience. You might want to call or stop by one of these places.  I was pleasantly surprised at how professional, complete, and busy my nearest dealer is.  They do exclusively PM, no stamps or other trinkets.

Here's my own physical breakdown estimate: 

~35% "junk" silver(of which 1/2 are quarters, and 1/2 are dimes)

~50% 1 ounce rounds

~15% bars

I figured it's best to keep things diverse by having rounds and bars and junk, so that if I need to do actual commerce, I have plenty of options, and am not busting out a hacksaw every time.  I also figured it's best to ignore the mint.  Like you mention, it's all silver, all  .999% (well, except the junk), and a commodity.  Since I bought physical as an ultimate insurance I might never convert back to dollars, I figured that American Eagles or Canadian Leafs aren't worth paying another $1+ premium per round.

There is no absolutely correct answer about what is best (I mean if there is a total collapse, will anyone really care about whether you have a "Sunshine Mint" 1 oz round or a 1oz American Eagle?  If you convert all it back to dollars next year, will the premium on Eagles net you any extra profit than the generic rounds? I don't know), and opinions among the seasoned goldbugs and PM dealers vary.  In the end I decided I could buy more silver by going generic, and that the more variety I have, the more options I give myself.

Oxidative effects, according to my local dealer, don't matter to them.  Knicks don't matter.  There are ways to cut down on the oxidation  and you can evenpolish your silver when it's time to sell back if you're worried about it.  My dealer told me some people polish their rounds before resale and end up taking off a little silver in the process, so it's best to just leave them alone or wipe them with a little rag and call it good.

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#12) On November 12, 2010 at 11:46 PM, tomlongrpv (61.88) wrote:

Yeah investing in infrastructure, new technologies, or other things that improve the economy  and the standard of living is stupid.  We should all become gold bugs and put everything into gold and silver.  That way we can turn all of the productive energy of our society into mining.  Great idea!

Actually I might be interested in some dental gold.  That's something of use.  I learned that today when I had a crown reinstalled.  Dental gold is even more valuable than edible gold. 

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#13) On November 13, 2010 at 11:12 AM, RonChapmanJr (30.28) wrote:

I've bought most of my silver on Ebay.  With well timed/placed bids I've gotten most of it at spot price or slightly under.  As long as you don't overbid, you can't overpay.

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#14) On November 15, 2010 at 8:10 AM, ChrisGraley (28.63) wrote:

Yep Tom, I don't know what we would do without those tea-pot museums and arrow subsidies. Never mind that we left our kids with the bill.

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#15) On November 15, 2010 at 11:28 AM, Jbay76 (< 20) wrote:

Thanks everyone for the comments and advice, minus Tom.  Tom, you've been quite the opposite.  Were you for the Rebuilding American Act and the "shovel ready projects" that Obama recently admitted do not exist?


@BillyTG....Bro, if I didn't know any better, I'd say you were stalking me.  Thanks for the google map, I modified it, but nonetheless I will use that info in the coming weeks to get more info. before I make my first prucahse in mid-Dec.


Chris, your kind of a hero to me.  I can't prepare like you are for a variety of reasons, but I do live vicariously through your blogs.  Personally, if things get really bad, I think I wouldn't mind becoming a Kiwi..more sheep than people, great surf , climate akin to CA...but I digress...


Thanks Again! 


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