Almost a year after I had been given a recommendation for a good bullion dealer in town, yesterday I finally gathered the cash and went there. It’s just up the street from West Coast Findings, so I stopped off there before proceeding to the metals dealer and purchased a decent electronic tabletop scale (also on my list for about a year).
I spoke to both dealers in the office, told them John sent me and about what I was looking for- .999 pure silver one ounce pieces. The atmosphere in there was…intense. “Heavy.” Not in a creepy pawn-shop way as I had halfway expected. Both dealers had great stares and shared a short, sharp economy of speech. Extremely reserved but pleasant. Fitting for a place where there are probably loaded guns resting just under the counter top and behind the desk.
The one fellow pulled out a tray of older silver bullion pieces and fine silver 1 ozt gift tokens of many shapes and imprints. He said since I was just going to cut them up and melt them down that he could sell me some of the older pieces at a slight discount since he would have a harder time moving them than the shiny new ones. That sounded fine to me, though I did want one new one. He selected a couple from the tray and pulled a new 2011 round for me as well. Needless to say I was pretty thrilled with the ones I left with, three for $33 each.
(dime shown for scale)
Today I’ll wash, purify them in a salt bed as well as pour out an offering of thanks to the earth that produced them, and to the spirits that were disturbed by their extraction and previous travels. Without denying the history of the material, the intent is to “re-virginize” the silver and realign it to this purpose. On Monday I’ll consecrate with fire by annealing, cut, and weigh out the pieces in preparation for melting them into really large granules. These spheres will be flattened a little with the hammer, and re-annealed in preparation for their striking in the mint.
It’s been a long, drawn-out process and the preparation of this first batch of silver will be a bit drawn-out too. More and more, though, I am coming to understand that there are tremendous advantages to this way of doing things. With time (more for my own organs of perception than anything else) the materials have room to tell me what I need to know in order to succeed.