Spotting a fake Panda gold coin

Discussion in 'World Coins' started by Pandacollector, Sep 19, 2010.

  1. One of the more frequent errors that bungling counterfeiters make with Pandas is to mix up designs from different years on the same coin. The format of the Temple of Heaven side (obverse) of Pandas changes every few years. Here is an example on eBay that shows a photo of a counterfeit with mismatched designs:


    I have posted an entire gallery of correct 1 oz. gold Pandas at If you mouse over the coin image the hidden side will appear. Among the earlier years pay attention to the placement of the two stairways on the side. Spotting a fake is very easy if the wrong Temple format is used. Unfortunately, people keep bidding on fakes and wasting their money.

    Best wishes,
    Peter Anthony
    Stork and Theodosius like this.
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  3. tlasch

    tlasch Penny Hoarder & Food Stamp Aficionado

    Peter do these counterfeiters use real gold? I mean if so this guy sold it for a loss. 1oz gold + labor forging this coin = almost $800 in loss. IDK just wondering
  4. Stork likes this.
  5. ikandiggit

    ikandiggit Currency Error Collector

    That's a great dramatic photo! Thanks for posting it!
  6. These fakes are worthless!!! The counterfeiter's profit comes from using very cheap metals – not gold or silver – and adding a few cents worth of plating. Only if a coin is numismatically rare and worth way more than melt value might a counterfeiter fabricate it with the real stuff. The buyer always loses.

    Best wishes,
    Peter Anthony
  7. Lugia

    Lugia ye olde UScoin enthusiast

    couldnt you tell with a scale? in any case this is 1 of many reasons i wont bid on ebay anymore.
  8. The "coin" was less than .1 gram off of official weight.

    Best wishes,
    Peter Anthony
  9. Hobo

    Hobo Squirrel Hater

    The counterfeiter may have made the coin thicker so it would weigh within tolerance. A specific gravity test would tell you the coin is not genuine.
  10. Agreed, that would probably do it. The quickest clue, though, is that the details of the design are inaccurate; for instance, the lettering is the wrong size. A generous collector passed this fake coin on to me to use as an example. There now are comparison photos of a genuine coin vs. one of these fakes on the Bad Bears/Counterfeits page (see Give No Quarter).

    Best wishes,
    Peter Anthony

    P.S. If anyone else has counterfeit Pandas they would like the world to see, please contact me. I will photograph them and post the information. Thanks.
  11. 1970 Silver Art

    1970 Silver Art Silver Art Bar Collector

    Actually I think that is correct. Some fake pandas could be right on the weight and wrong on the diameter and thickness. Other fake pandas could be right on the diameter and thickness and he weight could be way off (by much more than 0.1 gram of the official weight).

    It is best to weigh the panda and to measure the diameter and thickness. Ebay has a bad reputation of Chinese ebay sellers selling not only fake Pandas but also other fake coins. It is best to stay away from ebay when it comes to Pandas because ebay seems to either not care or cannot do anything about it.

    If a person wants to buy a gold or silver Panda, then it is best to buy that Panda from a local dealer with a good reputation or from a highly reputable online dealer such as APMEX.
  12. tlasch

    tlasch Penny Hoarder & Food Stamp Aficionado

    Even with eBay's supposed 'buyer protection' is it still a terrible idea?
  13. Last time I read the conditions Buyer Protection was provided for 45 days from the sale date. If you can confirm that a coin (or anything else) is counterfeit in that time period eBay will probably cover you. After that you're on your own. Remember, the meter starts running on the sale date so if your coin takes 3 weeks to arrive you only have another 3 1/2 weeks to determine authenticity. If you order from overseas and the item arrives in 6 weeks the protection will be fleeting.

    Best wishes,
    Peter Anthony
  14. tlasch

    tlasch Penny Hoarder & Food Stamp Aficionado

    I'd assume then that eBay would also require a professional certification that said coin in question was a fake..
    Thus not worth it as you still would lose money confirming what you already know.. a lot of money
  15. Todd Koch

    Todd Koch New Member

    I was checking out this coin on eBay, and based on this forum and your picture I am concerned about this coin. I see differences in the coin that is for sales, especially in the temple. Buyer beware!
    Look at this on eBay
    1987-Y 1 oz. Gold Chinese Panda Coin - Sealed In Plastic

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