I have talked to and met a number of collectors here, at B-J auctions and while racing. I haven't met one yet, who has ever said they can tell every original from every reproduction,.... right away. They rely on books and other knowledgeable people to help them determine if an item is real or a good, poor or excellent replica. All reproductions should be marked in some way. Not to do so has a distinct impact on this hobby and the value of all original items and inflates the value of what would and IMO should be affordable substitutes. It takes nothing to mark the reproduction, if it is massed produced even less than nothing to do the marking. If it is a "mom and pop" operation, it is now easy enough to mark the item. To not mark an item now is either laziness or dishonesty, again IMO.
Looking for Tide Water/ Tide Water-Associated/ Tidewater items