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how to tell nickel from silver

Sterling silver tends to be the most reflective metal. Image source: Flickr What to Look for In a 1941 Nickel. If it marked with an "800" or "900," your silver is a blend of different metals in which real silver may or may not be present. Because they contain silver, each is a premium value nickel. The Ring Test. So the U.S. government changed the composition of the coin to 56% Copper, 35% Silver and 9% Manganese. This number indicates that the piece is made with 92.5 percent silver, which means it is sterling silver. The key difference between nickel and silver is that the melting point of nickel is around two times higher than the melting point of silver. These represent a distinct variety and are very popular with collectors. If it is very smooth, most likely it is silver. You will be looking for: If you have a 1942-P Nickel, you have a Silver war nickel. While it is important for an informed buyer to know what year nickels are Silver, it is liberating to know APMEX has every buyer covered. Determining if a given nickel is a Silver war nickel is simple and takes just a moment. In 1922, silver was removed entirely from the five-cent coin, replacing it with a coin of roughly the same dimensions and mass as the American nickel. However, in 1942, with World War II raging in Europe and the Pacific, Nickel became a critical war material. However, unlike silver, nickel has a slight golden tinge. Plated Flatware . "If your magnet sticks strongly to the piece, it has a ferromagnetic core and is not silver." On the reverse (tails) side of the coin, you'll still find the familiar building known as Monticello, Jefferson's … To drive costs down of sterling silver in jewelry and other uses, nickel silver was created by mixing nickel, copper and zinc, with a coat of silver. Nickel can cause an allergic reaction in people with sensitive skin. Her articles can be seen on Realtytimes.com and eHow. Silverplated brass, nickel silver or low quality silver alloys will turn green when a drop of nitric acid is applied because of the high copper content. I can use any other suggestions. … It may be still be pure silver, but created in a country that doesn't require stamping. It is important to note, however, that these nickels do not have the same spot Silver price per ounce. Though chemically different, both these metals are lustrous and look somewhat similar. The steel rail has more of a gray color than the nickel silver. Sterling silver has a tendency to tarnish because of the copper content, and requires regular cleaning. The terms “nickel silver” and “German silver” actually refer to the same substance, but items made of this metal are not really silver at all. During WW2, ostensibly to conserve nickel, the composition was changed to 35% silver, 56% copper and 9% manganese. While it is … Nickel-silver conducts electricity much better than steel, also it does not corrode like steel does and is easier to clean. it tends to collect dirt faster. To keep nickel silver shiny, re-coat the metal regularly. Thanks Once any type of track becomes abraded,. @Big Will: Silver Nickels contain 1.75 grams and silver dimes have 2.25 grams for a difference of.5 grams of silver. Nickel or German “silver” is a white alloy containing copper, zinc, and nickel. The term Silver War Nickels refers to those produced by the United States Mint from mid-1942 to 1945, and these coins have valuable Silver content available to collectors and investors. Is every gold-colored case watch case made of gold? Nickel Silver vs. German Silver . In general the zinc content is lowered as the nickel is increased, the copper content varying between 53 and 63 percent. Coins without these large Mint marks are not Silver War Nickels. That's not a very big difference in terms of quantities. While nickel silver has its advantages, you shouldn’t be ripped off paying higher prices. Mintmark — The mintmark is the easiest way to tell a war nickel from a regular nickel. Whether you're new to Precious Metals, or just new to APMEX, we're glad you are here. Currently sterling silver is labeled as a mix of 92.5 percent pure silver and 7.5 percent copper. There supposed to weigh 5.0. The Jefferson nickel is normally 75% copper / 25% nickel. The tarnish on sterling silver comes off only by using a special tarnish removing solution and not just a polishing cloth. However, unlike the American coin, which was 75% copper and 25% nickel, the Canadian coin was pure nickel, … Nickels 1942-45 (war nickels) are 35% silver. Polycarbonate plastic is okay. The one on the left is looking like silver. Check the interior of the silver piece for the marking ".925" engraved on any component of the metal. What should be considered are the percentages, a silver nickel is 35% silver whereas a silver dime is 90% silver. The Jefferson Nickel has been an important piece of U.S. coinage since it was first produced in 1938. The other 7.5 percent is generally copper. Different countries and different types of silver have their own standards. Other nickel-free metals include pure sterling silver, copper, platinum, and titanium. Greetings: I have an old layout with brass track. Dimes and quarters made before 1964 are 90% silver. When in doubt, always ask the jeweler about the specifics of the metal and if they tell you that ‘nickel silver’ is a form of true silver, you’ll know that they’re either mistaken or outright lying to you. Any clues for those of us who have […] For hundreds of years silver has been used in various ways, such as to make tools and jewelry. Bruce R. writes: Hi! Apply a few drops of nitric acid. While some coin series have many factors that make it difficult to determine the Precious Metal content, it is easy to identify Silver Nickels by knowing a few key markers to look for. This indicates that the metal is not sterling silver, but is nickel that has been plated with silver. IIRC, the only steel track that Bachmann made/makes has the black built-in roadbed. Market Loss Policy | The 1941 nickel is the last pre-war nickel produced that had the 25% nickel, 75% copper composition.. Model Power has made/makes some steel flex track, but only in the code 100 size. Half dollars are split, 1948-1964 being 90% silver, and 1965-70 being 40% silver. I wish to upgrade the layout to nickel silver code 100. Put the metal under a strong light and take notice of its reflective quality. Answers to these and many other questions about watch case materials can be found below. All nickels produced from 1942 to 1945 use the 35% silver composition. Because pure silver itself is very soft, it is not functional; therefore, it is mixed with other metals to make it sturdier for everyday use. Rub the metal with a cloth. Another non-silver silver is tribal or Tibetan silver, which may contain no silver at all and may even have toxic metals such as lead. You can tell the “war nickels” by their very large mint marks on the reverse. While nickel silver is shiny, it does not have the same light reflective quality as sterling silver, particularly if the silver plating is wearing down and the base metal is showing through. Stay Informed of Our Special Offers. Fast & Free Shipping† On Orders Over $99! Fake silver or silver-plated items are generally made of … Rosie Rivera has a professional writing degree from the University of Houston and has been writing content since 2002. Sterling silver, in contrast, is an alloy in … After "silver" coins were made from silver, and before they were made from plated steel, most of them were made from a nickel silver alloy. The easiest way to check for a silver war nickel is the year-date on the coin. While nickel silver is shiny, it does not have the same light reflective quality as sterling silver, particularly if the silver plating is wearing down and the base metal is showing through. lady's silver brancelet image by Maria Brzostowska from, A Web Experience brought to you by LEAFtv, Bexfield: Silver, Silver-Plate and Old Sheffield Plate, Differences Between Sterling Silver & 925 Sterling Silver, How to Tell If Something is Silver & Not Silverplate, Difference Between White Gold & Sterling Silver. Avoid collectors mints that produce coins that claim to contain silver. The Nitric Acid Test is used to check if silver is pure or plated. On silver nickels, the mintmark is large and placed prominently above the dome of Monticello — on the reverse of the coin. If the area turns into creamy white, the silver is pure or sterling. I know theres no way of weighing these. This blend allowed the U.S. to reserve precious nickel and Copper needed in military applications for the hardening of steel for guns, tanks, planes and battleships. While sterling silver and nickel silver both tarnish, nickel silver can be shined fairly easily with a … Its highly doubtful you find any other nickel old enough to be made of silver. Starting in 1942, the United States Mint started striking five-cent coins of different composition: a combination of copper, silver and manganese. Privacy Policy | There is an abundance of valuable nickels throughout history. Previously the absence of any Mint mark indicated the coin was struck in Philadelphia. In 1946, the prior production composition, excluding all Silver, was reinstated. One of the more unusual Silver coins was the Jefferson Nickel of 1942 to 1945. The composition of coins today are made from a variety of metals such as zinc, bronze and nickel. To do so, file a small part of the item in a discreet area where it cannot be seen. Wear and tear of the metal will cause the base metals--nickel and other metals such as copper and zinc--to appear through the silver plating. Common stand-ins for sterling silverware are typically composed of stainless-steel, over which a thin layer of silver (or chrome or nickel) has been applied (plated) to give the impression of genuine sterling silver, but with higher resistance to corrosion, rust, and tarnish. Unfortunately, it does not mention how to tell them apart! When you do clean it, use a tarnish remover- but no abrasives. All their code 83 track and most of the code 100 is nickel silver. Silver Dollars. Also, look at surface markings on your item. The Krause World Coin book lists Canadian dimes and quarters in 1967 as being minted in two types; 50% and 80% silver, and in 1968 as two types; 50% silver and 100% nickel. For collectors and investors, these Silver war nickels represent an easy way to collect valuable Silver that also has fascinating historical significance at an extremely low premium. It is more expensive but, in the long run, well worth the additional cost. If it is a coin, you can flick it into … Unique to the entire five cent nickel denomination are the silver alloy nickels of 1942 to 1945. If you look at the reverse of a Silver Nickel there will be a large “P,” “D,” or “S” visible above Monticello, Jefferson’s home. From older to newer coins, you will find a plethora of nickels for the year of your choosing. The idea of these large marks was to clearly denote the Silver nickel years, making the coins easier to pull from circulation after the war. A small drop of nitric acid (a harsh industrial chemical) will turn a non-sterling item green due to high copper content.Items that are silver-plated brass, nickel silver or low-quality silver will turn green. If theres and different way of knowing, it would be appreciated. It is from the Silver nickel years, it has a large “P” Mint mark and you will see its slightly different color and luster. Sterling silver scratches easily. Keep sterling silver in pouches to avoid unnecessary handling and scratching. Silver war nickels bear large Mint marks of “S”, “D” or “P” above the dome of Monticello on the reverse. The result is generally a very sturdy metal that can appear just as precious as sterling silver, with few differences. Tim McCreight describes one nickel silver alloy as 65% copper, 17% zinc 18% nickel in Jewelry: Usually, real silver will be marked with ".925," which means it is sterling silver. Silver has a nice ringing sound when it is tapped. So, to wrap up… Nickel silver … There is a specific sound test you can do that I will show you in today's video. If you have a 1942-P Nickel, you have a Silver war nickel. Items advertised as silver and sold internationally should be stamped based on its silver content. Notice if the metal is wearing down, exposing a darker, dull metal. The coin came into existence to replace the Buffalo Nickel, and has stood the test of time and is still produced by the mint to this day. What metals were commonly used to make watch cases? Buying 35% Silver war nickels is simple and convenient with APMEX. way, nickel silver is a misnomer because it doesn’t contain silver, unless it is plated with silver. Many War Nickels are purchased as bullion type coins due to their composition of 35% Silver. Jefferson Nickel 1942 to 1945 Silver Alloy Variety. Silver coins have a higher pitched sound and ring to them, while non-silver coins have more of a dull thud. Jefferson Nickels were first minted in 1938 and made of 75% Copper and 25% Nickel. Many collectors coins from places such as the Franklin Mint and the National Collectors Mint are reproductions and are not even United States currency. 1964 Jefferson Nickel . "Silver is not noticeably magnetic, and exhibits only weak magnetic effects unlike iron, nickel, cobalt, and the like," says Martin. She has written a broad array of articles ranging from personal injury to mortgage products and health/wellness. Rub the metal with a cloth. It’s an ally pf copper, nickel and zinc. If there is no stamp, be leery. User Agreement. It is easy to determine what year nickels are Silver by looking for a few simple markers. Look for a stamp. Not sure how to tell the difference between a Silver or Nickel flute? Nickel silver, on the other hand, will not have the .925 indicator engraving. Whether your intent is to sell silver coins or purchase them to expand your personal collection, it is helpful to be able to tell the difference between silver and clad minted coins. While sterling silver and nickel silver both tarnish, nickel silver can be shined fairly easily with a cloth alone. Nickel silver is not a type of silver. The EZ track with the gray roadbed is nickel silver. Be aware that nitric acid will leave a permanent discoloration on your item, so make sure it is applied in an inconspicuous spot. The nearest train hobby shop is several hours from my house, so I recently went on line and found a vendor that sold 3 ft. sections of nickel silver flex track code 100. Are all silver-colored watch cases made of silver? A sterling silver necklace or bracelet will have the .925 stamped on the clasp or other component of the jewelry. [2] X Research source Don’t use an abrasive brush to clean sterling silver, as it scratches easily. But can you tell by looking at them. 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