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Strange marks appear from nowhere:


#1

Hello everyone,
I have been buying and selling Silver, in a very small way for some time.
I have come across this half sized Silver hip flask that has me stumped.
It was really dirty when I bought it off ebay so I gave it a good clean using a radial wheel in a dremel, very lowest grade, all was well.
When I went to clean it further, getting rid of scratches etc on my lathe, problems started.
As soon as it started to get hot these marks started to appear.
I have seen this only once before, on another flask funny enough, it turned out the other flask was Silver plate but this one is hallmarked, very badly faded but hallmarks.
I am hoping someone could tell me what these marks are, they spread when hot and they will not come off.
Thanks so much.
flask-2.jpg
flask-1.jpg


#2

Looks like an English silver hallmark, almost certainly a London assay mark from either the 1896-1925 or 1926-1945 cycle. From the shape of the punch the maker may possibly be Goldsmiths & Silversmiths Co Ltd.


#3

Hi,
Thanks for the reply.
I must not have worded my question correctly.
I am not asking about the hallmarks I am asking about the marks on the body of the flask, in the picture, what they are, if it is indeed Sterling Silver the marks should not be there?
Thanks.


#4

That mark may be where a monogram or engraving has been erased and/or filled in.


#5

Billym,

You shouldn’t have used a Dremel to polish this piece because it revealed the firestain – hermansilver.com/glossary.htm#Firestain. The only way to remove it is by copper depleting the flask’s surface or polishing out the firestain on entire flask.

I can’t say this in strong enough terms: NEVER use a Dremel to polish silver unless you’ve been trained to do so. When in doubt, contact a silver restorer.