WHAT NOT TO USE FOR A FIRST SALUTE
The Cliff Notes on How Not to Get Ripped Off
Over the last few years I have increasingly seen dubious items passed off as a first salute coin. This page is all about what you should not present as a first salute coin and some tips about navigating AAFES, amazon, ebay and etsy listings on silver dollars.
The warnings below are my opinion and mine alone.
ALL COINS ON TEMU ARE FAKE or COUNTERFEIT
TEMU is a wish.com clone and every single coin there is fake.
Same thing with wish. (Update as of 28 JUN 2023)
Part 1. Novelty and Challenge Coins
These items are sold online and on many posts. These are not real silver dollars. Some even literally have "SILVER DOLLAR" stamped on them.
(Like even with the quotations)
Do not give this to your NCO mentor. These are just cheap pot metal and any Airman, Soldier, Sailor, Marine, or Space Force folks are worth more than these cheap items. Additionally, I will decline to produce any custom presentation to fit these.
Part 2. Ebay and Amazon and Etsy Counterfeit Coins
While there are many reputable dealers on these platforms there are hundreds, perhaps thousands of sellers selling counterfeit silver dollars of ALL types. Seriously be careful out there. Take for instance the venerable Silver Eagle Silver dollar. Premiums for this coin will be 30-50% ABOVE spot silver prices from reputable dealers right now.
Anything under 30 dollars as of 01MAR2023 is most certainly a fake unless the coin has problems. These are only produced in the USA! Any listing in which these are from overseas, just stay away from.
Part 3. Cheepo USAA Free Dollar
These are dollar coins but they are not actually Silver dollars. Not sure why they do this, I guess it is cool that they give away 1 dollar, having a multi-billion dollar market cap and all. However these coins have NO silver content and are not fit to use as a first salute coin. The coin of issue here is the Eisenhower Silver dollars from the 70s. The US Mint did produce 40% silver versions of the these coins that were not meant for circulation. You can find these legit 40% Ike dollars in uncirculated condition for around 20 dollars, often less.
The bottom line is you are not going to find any coin
at any bank that is a real silver dollar unless you are very, very lucky.
Part 4. Marlow White Silver Dollar
From what I have personally seen, these are some of the lowest grade silver dollars but at inflated, uncirculated coin prices. Are they even real silver dollars? Probably, but they should stick to uniforms because they apparently do no know jack about coins.
Be savvy about your coin purchase. You should present a real silver dollar to your NCO mentor, family member or best friend to whom you render the very first salute of your career as an Officer. A fancy silver dollar or one worn smooth, they do not have to be expensive.
If you get it on my site, great! If not, cool. (Not quite as cool though TBH)
If you want to get something and hold it before you buy it, there are many Local Coin Shops all over the nation. For the vast majority of them, their reputation is important. They would have been chased off long ago if they were awful to their customers.