How NOT to store silver

Discussion in 'Bullion Investing' started by chucklenut, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. chucklenut

    chucklenut New Member

    figured id give a little lesson to those who may not know

    Many years ago I started stacking silver. I didn't have alot and among my first purchases were 5 oz bars and this 1 ten ounce bar

    They were all in plastic wrapping from the major distributors so I figured "heck, ill just bundle them together with a rubber band"

    Poor choice. After a few weeks or maybe a month (and stored in a cool, dry closet) i get these gnarly black tarnish marks on them

    I dont know the science behind it or even how it tarnished through the plastic, but keep rubber bands the hell away from coins, bars, what have you

    26FD83F3-2619-45F5-9473-7CD1FD3FA211.jpeg 478D47A9-A3C6-464B-8F5B-48CFE69842DE.jpeg
    Legomaster1 likes this.
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  3. myownprivy

    myownprivy Well-Known Member

    Interesting. I think you're right about the rubberband. Look at those marks!

    I have large bars stored in their plastic, and they still look great.
    chucklenut likes this.
  4. LakeEffect

    LakeEffect Average Circulated

    I could be wrong but I suspect rubber bands contain a high amount of sulfur.
    asheland and Paul M. like this.
  5. Collecting Nut

    Collecting Nut Borderline Hoarder

    In 1839 Goodyear discovered by accident that rubber when combined with lead and sulfur make the natural rubber more ply able and increase its usage. Prior to that rubber was to soft in the summer months and to brittle in the winter.

    In 1841 rubber bands were invented and today they have many uses. The Post Office is the largest consumer of rubber bands. Even the food industry uses them.

    Because the rubber is combined with lead and sulfur it is not to be used with metals. It will permanently stain them, even through plastic. The stain can be removed but all luster is also removed, hence the everlasting stain.
    Seattlite86, Numinaut and chucklenut like this.
  6. ToughCOINS

    ToughCOINS Dealer Member Moderator

    The sulfur will not just stain metals . . . it corrodes them. I recall an issue with leakage on submarines because of the sulfur-induced corrosion of the seating surfaces for breech door seals on torpedo tubes.
    Numinaut, Alegandron and Inspector43 like this.
  7. TylerH

    TylerH Well-Known Member

    This may be a dumb question but with bullion does staining even matter ie: paying for mineral weight not “eye appeal” or luster, etc?

    Mind you with my collector OCD this would drive me nuts, but value wise does it matter? Do people collect certain silver bar designs?
    Seattlite86 and Alegandron like this.
  8. Clawcoins

    Clawcoins Well-Known Member

    I found that out storing silver coins in those soft PVC flips rubberbanded together in batches. In just a year or something they had black marks on it. I have a thread about it especially in relation to a 1922 Peace Dollar that had black marks on it.

    I replaced those PVC flips with non-PVC flips and haven't had a problem since even though I still use rubberbands.
  9. chucklenut

    chucklenut New Member

    For bullion purposes I figure silver is silver
    Alegandron likes this.
  10. Clawcoins

    Clawcoins Well-Known Member

    Except people like nice looking silvery silver.
    Not dark encrusted stuff.
  11. Collecting Nut

    Collecting Nut Borderline Hoarder

    Some people collect silver art bars. They want the silver to look as good as a coin to a coin collector.
  12. Packrat

    Packrat Active Member

    Wish I had a dollar for every silver coin I have come across with a rubber band mark.
    alk1129 likes this.
  13. Randy Abercrombie

    Randy Abercrombie Supporter! Supporter

    Disconcerting to say the least..... I have my slabbed coins grouped together and have the slabs rubber banded together in my safe. I doubt that the sulfur would leach through the TPG slabs.... But then again I wouldn't think it would leach through a PVC wrapper either. I'll be removing the rubber bands from my slabs tonight.
    asheland likes this.
  14. Charles REid

    Charles REid Member

    The sulfur is not likely pure, but an acidic compound that is interacting with the latex of the rubber mix. Add a little moisture and it is fairly corrosive.
  15. TheFinn

    TheFinn Well-Known Member

    If you were buying silver with big black streaks on it, or would you rather have nice lustrous silver without black streaks? Would you pay the same price for both, or would you want the streaked pieces at a discount? Yes, it does matter.
    Dave M and asheland like this.
  16. TheFinn

    TheFinn Well-Known Member

    The sulfide will go right through the plastic, which is porous. It will also go right through the hard plastic of slabs, so don't ever put rubber or elastic bands around coins to hold them together. I am even afraid to put the rubber band around coins when submitting them for grading in-person.
    asheland and Oldhoopster like this.
  17. Fender Bender

    Fender Bender Member

    Thanks for the information.
  18. asheland

    asheland The Silver Lion

    I don't want rubber bands in the same room as my silver. :D
    Randy Abercrombie likes this.
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