Academy Silver Bars
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Academy Silver Bars were refined and minted until 2012 (when production ceased) by Academy Group, a reputable bullion manufacturer based in New Mexico, USA. Academy was in business for over 30 years and in addition to the manufacture of bullion products, Academy has also produced materials for the jewelry industry and silversmiths. Academy was also a prominent recycler of precious metals - including specialized retrieval of gold and silver from waste streams previously considered difficult to recycle - for example collection of silver by recycling waste from the photographic, medical and graphic arts industries.  
Academy was purchased in 2010 by Brush Engineered Materials and operated as a wholly owned subsidiary.  According to Scottsdale Silver, 2011 was the last year of manufacture of the Academy bars, and the bars will henceforth be made with the Materion Logo. The Materion bars are now available. In 2012, the AcademyCorp.com web site redirects to Materion, reflecting the new ownership.
Academy Silver Bar
- ten troy ounces
Academy silver bars are a popular and well-known brand among bullion investors and collectors of silver bars. As seen in the image on the left, their logo features an antique "Academy" in the Classical Greek architectural style and the words "In God We Trust", in addition to the weight of the bar and the purity. The reverse of their bars is also well known for its unique spiral motif. Academy bars also feature a serial number on the reverse. Academy bars were typically manufactured at .999 fine (99.9%).
Academy Silver Bar Sizes
Academy has manufactured silver bars in the most popular sizes and most commonly seen are the 10 troy ounce and 100 troy ounce "stacker" bars. These have an edge bevel, raised above and indented below, enabling the bars to be stacked securely with less shifting during transportation. No doubt these bars also have appeal to investors who like the tactile aspect of their "real assets" and enjoy making and admiring "silver towers".
Typically, one sees only two "types" of silver bullion bar - the more modern-looking "minted" (pressed) bars and the "old-style" cast (poured) bars. Cast bars have a rougher and "chunkier" appearance in general, whereas minted bars have a precision made and "perfect" appearance. This is simply due to the method of manufacture: The cast bars are made from molten silver poured into a mold, whereas the minted bars are made in a similar manner to coins - first a "blank" block is prepared and then it is pressed at high pressure between two dies bearing a mirror-image of the design.
Academy's "stacker" bars are however manufactured using a third process - they are machined with CNC (computer numerical controlled) machine tools and are said to be the only bars manufactued using this process.
Academy has also made the old-style cast bars and these chunky "loaf" bars may be seen at 10 and 100 ounces bearing the Academy stamp. But no matter which type you choose, remember that the silver in the bars is still silver, and still at the purity stated on the bar.
Older silver bullion bars often have an additional appeal to collectors due to their relative rarity and historical interest - and may sometimes be seen (for example on ebay) selling for a price considerably higher than the current spot price of silver.
The fact that Academy bars are no longer being made would appear to indicate that the Academy silver bars may become more desirable to collectors in the next few years and join the ranks of "collector's bars" with correspondingly increased prices.
Academy Silver Bars - References:
 "Academy Silver Bars ( 10 Troy Ounce ) Original Materion Poured Bar" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RGhDQAdJ9dI
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