5 Tips for Spotting Fake Sports Memorabilia
Sports memorabilia can hold tremendous value, both in the sentimental and monetary senses. Autographs, rare cards, vintage team apparel and many other things fetch high prices in the memorabilia market, but it can be difficult to discern the real deal from a fake. There are plenty of fakes out there, but remembering these helpful tips will help you spot them every time.
- If It Looks Too Good To Be True…
It’s an old saying, and a cliche in the eyes of many, but it bears repeating; if it looks too good to be true, then it probably is. Always be wary of that seemingly perfect item, because it could very well be a perfectly crafted fake. Counterfeiters will go to great lengths to get over on you, and they often reach their goals by making you forget your common sense. Approach every deal with a skeptical eye, and beware of any offer that looks a little bit too good.
- Turn Every Autograph Upside Down
Autographs are some of the most highly sought-after items in the sports memorabilia market, and they are also some of the most commonly faked items. There are dozens of ways to fake an autograph, but one of the most popular methods is still good old fashioned forging. When counterfeiters forge autographs by hand, they can look very convincing. However, turning an autograph upside down helps to bring out the subtle inconsistencies that otherwise go unnoticed. Turn it over and compare it to a certified authentic autograph to get the whole story.
- Take a Closer Look
Sometimes, more advanced techniques are used to create forgeries in sports memorabilia. Many autographs are forged with stamps or robotic auto-pen machines. While these techniques create a forgery that is perfect at first glance, they are easily spotted as fakes when magnified. Use a magnifying glass to look for any unnatural properties in the ink itself. A stamped signature will be heavier in ink on the outsides of the lines, and will lack the natural inconsistencies of a hand-written signature. Auto-pen signatures start and end abruptly on dots, and often have overly robotic straight lines that a human would never write in a signature.
- Become an Expert Yourself
The best way to become adept at spotting fakes in sports memorabilia is to become an authority on the subject. Get to know as much as you can about memorabilia so that you’ll know what to look for in a fake. Small details often escape the untrained eye, but if you expand your knowledge about sports memorabilia as a whole, you’ll be able to catch those details. Get as much face time with real memorabilia as you can, and always strive to learn more.
- Shop With Reputable Dealers
Some dealers are well-respected in the world of memorabilia as honest outfits with high standards, and these are the dealers with whom you should be doing business. Sellers like Screpgraph have rock solid reputations in the industry, and you can rest assured that they’ve authenticated their items. A lesser known dealer with little recognition will be more apt to sell you a fake. Choose your dealers carefully, and may the buyer always beware.