Gold ingots are large gold bars that have been created by pouring molten gold into a mold and allowing it to solidify. Gold ingots are the heaviest of gold bars and are referred to as “cast.” This is compared to smaller bars, which are referred to as “minted.”
Gold isn’t the only metal that is cast into ingots, but it’s certainly the most famous. Any metal from aluminum to copper can be cast into an ingot and the process is a relatively simple one. In fact, casting metal from molds has been around for over five thousand years and while technology has advanced the process is still essentially the same.
The metal is first heated until it is molten liquid. After that, the molten metal is then poured into a cast and allowed to cool until it is once again solid. It’s then ejected from the cast and ready to go on its way.
Casting is a widely used method of creating bars of gold for a few reasons. Casting allows for the creation of large bars, which are easily transported and handled—very important qualities since gold ingots are used as a reserve currency. Additionally, casting minimizes waste, which is important with a metal as valuable as gold.
While casting is molten metal that is then cooled in a cast, minting is cut from a flat piece of gold. Minting makes for smaller bars overall and are generally held in private hands and not used as a reserve currency. >Gold coins, for example, will be created through minting, not casting. Recent additions include such products as ChipGold, which is a small gold bar that is vacuum sealed and comes with security features such as a hologram, serial number, barcode, and a tracking number.
The United States Gold Bureau sells a number of excellent gold coins that are the centerpiece of any good collection. Contact us today to discuss how you can get started adding gold and other precious metals to your investment portfolio.