Not sure if this would get more exposure in the Silver forum. However, I'm a tiny physical investor in the UK. I like to collect bullion coins from loads of different countries, so instead of just stacking bars of identical silver, I prefer to get a tube of ASEs, a tube of Phils, a tube of Maples, Libertads (beautiful coins!!!!), etc. I also pick up individual coins for collectable purposes. But in general - Canadian silver Maples, whilst high purity - are 'investment bullion' to me. I bought a couple of tubes a while ago. I've been messing about with Bitcoin and other Internet crypto currencies and exchanged them for Maples, and noticed that the Maples I got sent were often slightly corroded. The edges, sometimes as much as a sector off the side, would have a White discolouration, very much like a type of corrosion. However, my chemical knowledge says silver oxide is black and White silver salts would be unstable. In a panic, I checked the unopened tubes, which came from a respected dealer. I hadn't taken the coins out and chucked them around with bare hands either - I checked the second tube which had never been opened... The 'fresh' coins showed the same White discolouration, to different degrees. None of my other coins do this. Even my 'lucky' coins which tend to sit in my pocket and get 'real' circulation abuse. Is this a .9999 problem or do I have fake coins? I'd be shocked if the coins were fake. They're not kept in inappropriate conditions either. I've even got a *more* pure coin - the Royal Silver Andean Cat at .99999 - this hasn't corroded either (though is in airtight packaging). I'd have thought that the Canada Mint tubes offered a good enough barrier from the air? Does this also make my Maples unsellable now? Somewhat confused, esp since the UK doesn't have 'Local Coin Shops'. Would appreciate advice / other experiences! Cheeeers, catfish
catfish ~~ not to woRRy tOO much here. have sEEn many an AG ML come w/ this.@ the shop we dip them in this stuFF caLLed EZ zest... it comes oFF 75-80% of the time. think it has something to do with the way the canadian mint washes their buLLion after strike...have had tubes show up at the shop w/ this. problem is that when someone comes to seLL ML's w/ milk they are given the .999 round price, not the cuRRent ML price...try cleaning you might get it back to UNC or it might be a .9999 round either way you are stiLL holding AG!
EZ zest eh? Any idea what actual chemical is in the stuff? Nitric acid would dissolve any silver compound but it'd also start dissolving the metal itself, which would be a pretty idiotic thing to do :)
I'm very wary of 'cleaning' any of my coins... there's a lot of hysteria about 'you will DESTROY the value of your coins if you clean them!!!111!1!111' etc. on teh intarwebz, y'see.
However here in the UK, there are no 'local coin shops' so if I needed to sell the coins, I'd have to post them off to Germany or somewhere... and don't want them to see 'milk' on the coins (perfect description, cheeers) and either reject them or pay less for them. As you say - the price is less for milky coins. Weirdly, in the EU, Maples are *cheaper* than .999 coins like ASEs or Libertads. I guess it's about supply, but Maples are amongst the cheapest govt-minted silver ounce coins available in the EU. Even though they're higher grade silver. My Britannias are more expensive, even though Britannia silver is .958 and nowhere near as pure.
In a 'currency breakdown' scenario, clueless randoms are less likely to accept my 'milky' Maples too. And yes, I'm talking about a fresh tube, bought from a major EU supplier, sealed. Weird.
You're right, I'm still holding physical and it's under my control - but I don't want it to corrode away like the old PVC problem caused!
destroy the value of the ML. they are not numi's. of course you NEVER clean those. these are buLLion. it is diFFerent. the value is in the metal. the brighter the shine, the beTTer.
I have had the same issue with some wildlife series coins from the RCM both cougars and grizzlies. They are beautiful coins with high premiums but the spots ruin it for me. Unless I can find a fix I will not buy RCM coins again. I hope the E-Z-est works... Tried the eraser method and that made them look worse. Tried ammonia and nada. Blech.
I'm going to try out method 3 in this video to see if it works
Gave a milky maple (not numismatic) a quick and vigorous rub with an eraser and it did ok - washed in warm water after and gave it another rub. It got rid of the clouding but you will lose the "untouched feel".