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Thread: Hallmarking in the UK as a foreigner?

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
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    Halmstad, Sweden, Sweden
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    Thank you all.

    This is our assessment office, though there are no information about hallmarking on the English page: http://www.sp.se/en/units/weightsand...r/default.aspx
    The page in Swedish: http://www.sp.se/sv/units/weightsand...r/default.aspx
    Inspecta seems to quality control piping and such things and not silver, at least not in Sweden.

    SP explained to me that the normal hallmarking procedure is not a destructive test, but the CCM one is, and the lady I talked to said specifically that the object would be destroyed.
    Also, I would also need a makers mark registered in Sweden, and it is kind of expensive. 55 per year compared to your 75 for ten years...
    Plus as I mentioned, 40 for every test they make.

    If I just send a couple of pieces for hallmarking, then yes, it will be expensive. Better to send more to make up for freight costs. Which by the way is not that bad compared to the normal Swedish freight costs, I guess there is a reason for us being in Zone 3 of Amazons delivery chart.

    Will calculate a bit and decide when I get closer to needing a Hallmark.

    /Andreas

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
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    Finland
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    As far as I know "inspecta" inspect everything near enough & they do testing & marking of jewellery..at least the goldsmiths in Finland use them.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    London
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    CCM is not a separate test in itself in the UK....the items is tested first and then the UK mark is applied, and at this stage the CCM is also applied if requested...

  4. #14
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    Dec 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveLAO View Post
    With regard to having a sponsor's punch if you're only going to be using laser marks....there are a number of schools of thought on this but here at London we stick absolutely to the letter of the act, which mentions that you need to have a punch in order to "strike" your mark...and as you can't "strike" a laser mark, we do insist that you have a punch made. To be honest, I'm not sure what the other offices do, but that's our view on it.
    Steve, you are a much valued member of the forum, so I hope you won't be offended if I take issue with the Assay office position on this. Ancient institutions can become fosilised and by definition, fossilised means dead.

    When this rule was made, laser marks were unknown and to insist on them now is doctrinaire. It does not make sense to have a punch made if you intend never to use it. At some stage this should be debated and updated. After all, why strike a light, when you can switch it on. Dennis.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    Romsey
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    I understand what you're saying, Dennis - yesterday I had some issues registering with a doctor because the utility bill I brought was a printout (paperless contract, paperless statements); however... As a software engineer, I'm inherently untrusting of software storage because of its ephemeral nature. It's too easy for a file to be lost, backed up onto something that fails (and that's never realised until it is to late); I much prefer having a physical token - in this case a punch - which is more difficult to lose. Far from impossible, just more difficult - or at least, more obvious if it is.

    Some days I'm a bit of a luddite

  6. #16
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    Apr 2010
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    Exeter, Devon
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    Here, here Dennis. I hate waste too, why make it if its not needed, just because its a centuries old tradition.
    Last edited by Patstone; 06-09-2013 at 07:35 AM.

  7. #17
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    Finland
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    Laser markings will be open to counterfeiting me thinks.
    Having something stamped in a "proper" assay office is the best way.
    How do you trust everyone in every country to be honest & true?

  8. #18
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    Jan 2012
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    dear old Blighty - (in deepest Wiltshire)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gemsetterchris View Post
    Laser markings will be open to counterfeiting me thinks.
    Having something stamped in a "proper" assay office is the best way.
    How do you trust everyone in every country to be honest & true?
    True in many ways, but even that is open to counterfeit. I recall a conversation with Matt from the Sheffield Office whom I think, if I understood correctly, stated that the Assay offices have a laser mark that incorporates a little 'something' extra. For example, the Birmingham Anchor has a little addition - under extreme magnification, I found one of my previous marks from there had number on it. I did find the switch from recessed to flush a bit harder to cope with, but the deep laser cut I now have is brilliant.

    My stamped experience (From Birmingham) frequently left my items damaged. They scraped on my items for testing and not in a way that was subtle. I had to do a lot of cutting and buffing to try and recover some semblance of work.

    I now use London and have been blown away with the amazing results, professionalism and approachability. I send my items in almost complete, including set with stones and only wish I had gone there ten years ago.
    Last edited by Wallace; 06-09-2013 at 08:11 AM.

  9. #19
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    Thank you Wallace I'm so pleased with your comments
    Counterfeiting is always a problem and always has been. However with regard to fake laser marks, I've so far only come across one example of a fake and it was so rubbish it wouldn't fool a blind man. The type of laser required to obtain the definition at such small sizes is out of reach to most due to its high cost, and yes rumour has it that we put a "little something" in our laser marks to identify them from anyone who tries to fake them. I'd be very happy to give you details of this "extra" but then of course I'd have to kill you!!
    We are very proactive with regard to faking and run specialist seminars and training on ways to identify them in both antiques and modern items of jewellery and silver. I don't know if anyone saw the antiques roadshow couple of weeks ago but Alastair Dickenson was talking about faking hallmarks there too, so it's quite topical! Our stand at IJL this year had a mini exhibition of old and new fakes which got a tremendous amount of interest.

  10. #20
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    Jul 2009
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    Romsey
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveLAO View Post
    I'd be very happy to give you details of this "extra" but then of course I'd have to kill you!!
    Tsk, tsk Steve - security through obscurity? That's only ever a short-term solution!
    I shall go and have a peer at one of my pieces under the scope with the magnification cranked way up

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