500 American Silver Eagles - Probably not 2018 - Deal resurrected

500 American Silver Eagles - Probably not 2018 - Deal resurrected


If you do a google search you will see there have been a lot of fake or counterfeit Silver Eagles sold on eBay.

And a number of articles like this:


As Bend3R mentioned, the coins might be mixed in with real ones. Also, some of the articles point out that eBay sellers may not be aware they are selling fakes.


Considering that you personally have no use for silver in exactly the same way you have no use for nickel, copper, gold, or any other metal, your observation of “value” is not very rational. It only has “value” because other people think it has “value.” Has nothing to do with it being silver, could have been unobtanium. Or obtanium. :slight_smile:


Well historically, shiny things have pretty consistently been desirable. OTOH, the amount of gold and silver in warehouses seems like the supply/demand would lower the value considerably in a scenario like Walking Dead or Revolution tv shows. Especially once you lower the population but not the metals stockpiled.

Silver, copper, gold are also pretty useful conductors for electronics. But again there’s not really a shortage of supply.


Thank you, Argyll, for posting that. I never saw it coming. Did not think they would bother making fake silver coins. Clearly I was wrong.

Guess I will have to open monster box after all and check things out.

Oh, well. Welcome to 2018, Shin. :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


No argument. You are correct. But who am I to argue with over half the people in this world who, against all reason, place high value on precious metals?


Well somebody not reading this thread must think that monster box is valuable. I just checked the price again. It’s poised to crack $8600!:open_mouth:


Price is now over $8600!


Have investigated a bit now. No question Argyll was right, and I was wrong, that fake American silver eagle coins abound. However

I cannot locate reports of fake coins in sealed monster boxes. Most of the reports seem to be regarding individual coins, and some in tubes. People are buying known fake coins, sold as such, and then reselling those same coins while misrepresenting them as genuine.

Apparently it is even worse with rounds since there are fewer “tells” with a round. Bad totem.


Well, guys, this is gonna be interesting. First, I do not yet have my monster box. It is scheduled to be delivered later today. But I do have some additional insight to pass along regarding this purchase:

Executive summary

If I had it to do over again I would not purchase coins where the seller chooses the date.


In light of Argyll’s heads up regarding fraud I think it would be better to have coins with the very most recent date.

Q: But Shin, in the title of this thread you wrote your coins are probably 2018 coins. Are you backing away from that?

I am, though of course hope remains with the coins still undelivered. 2018 coins would be best, no question of that, from a fraud perspective.

It is interesting to compare the offering featured in the OP to the same dealer’s offering of these coins on their website, noting especially the differences in prices. Here is a link to the latter offering:

Link to any year price

Now here was the eye-opener (maybe dopeslap would be a more accurate way to put it) for me. Contrary to what I wrote up thread, note their price for 2018 coins as compared with prices for “any year” coins:

link to price for 2018 silver eagles

Illuminated by Argyll’s post, above, I now am seeing reason for the price differential in favor of the newer coins. It relates to chain of custody. To wit:

This dealer buys and sells coins. It is NOT guaranteed, especially this late in the year. But in general, coins dated 2018 are less likely to have been owned by another coin buyer and then bought back by this dealer, or any dealer, and then resold. Coins which go straight from the mint to a reputable dealer, and then immediately to me are the coins I want to buy. I do not want coins previously owned by somebody else, sold back to the dealer, and then resold to me.

Of course it would have been better to think all this through before buying an “any year” box. If I had it to do over I would have waited for the 2019 coins and then bought as quickly as possible after they became available.

But I didn’t do that. So it will be interesting to see what is delivered later today. Live and learn.


Q: Uh, Shin, you also wrote up thread you thought older coins are more valuable than newer coins. Are you backing away from that now?

Yes, I am, in light once again of Argyll’s fraud heads up. I do think older coins might be more valuable strictly from a numismatic perspective. But when you toss in fraud concerns the newest coins are surely safer, hence more valuable. It’s clear now that tampering has to be a real concern. And the very newest coins offer the least opportunity for tampering.


Not speaking of the type of items you are talking about in this thread, but the above statement applied to general circulation coins that numismatists collect is incorrect. The value of a coin has almost nothing to do with its age.


Well, everyone, the eagles have landed . . . in our kitchen!!

What to do? I am soliciting suggestions with great humility. Here is the situation:

That green box weighs a TON . . . and it is much larger than I anticipated. My coins are from 2016. The straps appear totally intact, no tampering detected. The green container itself is very nearly pristine. However:

The straps say only “United States Mint”. They do not say “West Point”. Still could be OK, since I think the silver eagles are minted in more than one location. The lettering is light blue while the straps are white.

There is a serial number (or whatever) written atop the container, sort of in magic marker, just as you see in photos of other monster boxes. There is also a sticker on the side of the box which has a barcode and a printed number matching the number written in magic marker.

Really I have no reason to suspect anything . . . which is meaningless since I am clearly pretty stupid and easy to fool when it comes to fraud.

The key dilemma is whether or not to cut the straps, open the box, and inspect each coin. I have searched the net for reports of monster boxes containing concealed fake coins. Am unable to find any such reports. Of course, again, there are plenty of reports of individual silver eagles which are fakes.

Incidentally, although my seller for this deal is in Dana Point, CA, which is in Orange County (been there years ago), the monster box was shipped to me from Salt Lake City. That is not a red flag to me, but it is a curious thing so thought I would mention.

Next step? I dunno.


Stroke them for hours muttering “My precious.”


Oh come on, Argyll. You can do better than that. Should I break the seals and open the box or not?


Where’s Delzy when you need him?


I would wait until having enough bricks to build a barbecue grill would make you very happy.


OK, no serious help here. But the internet is vast. Research indicates others have been in my precise spot; to open or not. I mean, these monster boxes are not exactly new. They have been around a LONG time.

Opinions on this certainly vary. Will have to give the matter some thought.

One watchword for anyone contemplating monster box purchase:


Learn from my experience. When you buy, take provenance into account. You will be happier that way.


New day new price. Spot must be down. Link in OP now showing monster price just south of $8600. Also, the seller is claiming only 5 monster boxes remain with 1255 boxes sold so far. That’s a lot of silver American eagles. I’m wondering, once those final 5 boxes sell, if this deal will disappear . . . or will the seller instead magically locate more “any year” monster boxes and keep this thing going. We shall see.

In addition, for silver eagle buyers contemplating a more modest investment, I tripped over this single 2018 coin selling just below $21, which is less than I paid only a few days ago:

Silver Eagle gems below $21

Not a bad deal. Buy four and the price is closer to $20. Might be a sweet stocking stuffer.:wink:


On the question of whether to open the box or not, here are a few things to consider.

How likely is it that you or your heirs will want to sell the box as a whole, or sell the coins individually?
Assuming you or they will be selling the box as a whole, do dealers buy boxes without opening them?
I assume they do open them, but will seeing the box is still sealed before opening it mean they will offer more?
And of course, how much is your curiosity killing you to find out what year the coins are?

Consider the answers to those questions and then make your decision. I wouldn’t have bought a box unless I knew what I was going to do with it after it arrived. If your plan when you bought it was to never open it until either a) you’re about to receive cash money for the whole thing or b) the apocalypse comes and you need real silver coins to use as money, then just leave it sealed.


Thanks for a good and thoughtful post. Much appreciated.

I already know the year of the coins. It is 2016. This is marked on the outside of the box. Still, sadly you’re right, I should have considered most of this stuff in advance. But I’m a total coin newbie and I didn’t. Instead I thought the price and terms were attractive so I just jumped in. Also, I did not appreciate the importance of provenance where these coins are concerned. You live and learn.

All of that said, I’m not in terrible shape. I do keep clicking the link in the OP. But at this writing I am up about $800 on the transaction. Half of that is owing to the seller having allowed me to use a credit card. The rest is just the silver marketplace which, I realize, is highly unstable. And I do realize the gap between bid and asked on silver. The $800 is just a nominal figure since I have no intent to sell.

I believe dealers DO open boxes before purchasing them. My only real concern is fraud. Argyll’s post up thread was a dope slap for me. It’s 2018. I should have been thinking fraud, but I’m old and spent too much time living during years when such stuff as goes on today would have been far less likely. That is no excuse. But it is the truth.

Anyway, as Argyll highlighted, ASE fraud is a fact of life today with individual coins and small quantities of coins. But nowhere have I been able to locate reports of fraud where monster boxes are concerned. Obviously it’s a possibility. But the likelihood is low for the boxes.

None of that detracts from my counsel to others, when buying boxes, to take provenance strongly into account. I see now that a key reason for the low price I paid is absence of good provenance. Said another way, my box almost certainly was pre-owned and did not come straight from the mint. Did the prior owner tamper? Probably not but there is no way to know for certain without opening. Did the dealer from whom I bought perform any sort of certification? Not likely.

I understand now the way to buy these monster boxes is from a business that deals directly with the mint, and at the very beginning of a new issue (new year) of coins. That way the coins you obtain will be “mint to you”, and likelihood for tampering will be very low . . . if your dealer is honest, of course. Word on the street is some dealers will open the boxes, ferret out and replace all the MS-70 coins contained therein, and then re-seal. True? I dunno. But since I bought for the silver value and not the numismatic value I don’t really care.

Still, that does go to something you mentioned. For a coin dealer an unopened box (if it really is unopened) is more attractive because the dealer anticipates the possibility of finding coins having numismatic value.

I could not tell the difference between an MS-70 coin and an MS-68 coin if my life depended on it. They would both look amazing to me. But the pros know this stuff and many coin dealers are pros. To me it’s all just silver.:grinning:


Getting a better handle on this deal now from watching that OP link. Earlier seller claimed only five boxes remained. A lie I think, because now he suddenly has ten boxes available!! Big shock.

Continue to think he is selling off “second-hand” silver. And at the current price, roughly $400 more than what I paid, he is delighted to service new customers.

It’s an interesting decision for silver buyers. I mean, silver is silver. The older silver is still .999 silver. So will newcomers to the market take the discount or hold out for fresh 2019 coinage? Given this deal remains actively ongoing, it appears quite a few buyers are taking that discount.


Whoa! Price back down some and more buyers jumping aboard in response. This seller is running a secondary market in silver coins. He buys from the public at deep discount and then sells those “any year” boxes on eBay for a couple bucks/coin over spot. Quite an operator.