Q: “Can I ever tell if anabolic steroid tablets are fake without having to send them off for analysis? Is there a way other than just noticing no results from them?”
A: There actually is a simple way to do this. It will not tell if the correct steroid is present, and in some cases in will indicate that there is a substance present when that substance is not a steroid, but in many cases with fakes it will prove that no significant amount of any steroid is present.
First, crush tablets as thoroughly as reasonably possible. At a bare minimum the number of tablets should provide at least 20 mg of steroid, but 50 or 100 mg is better if you can afford the loss.
Then add to a few ounces of acetone, and stir thoroughly. Cover and allow some time to sit, such as an hour. Repeat. Pour off the acetone through a coffee filter or through a better filtration device, and evaporate the filtered acetone.
If absolutely nothing appears, the tablets definitely contained no steroid. Or if the amount of material recovered is obviously drastically less than what should be the case, then the tablets are at best underdosed.
If wishing to determine dosing, then use enough tablets to allow reasonably accurate weighing, and repeat the procedure to exhaustion. In other words, take the powder from the filter paper and re-extract with acetone, also repeating the crushing procedure. Wash the filter paper also in acetone. After drying, combine anything that is recovered with all product that was previously recovered. Repeat until no significant amount is still being recovered. If properly dosed, the amount recovered should be essentially the same as the label dose times the number of tablets.
Again, the procedure will not tell you whether the material recovered is the correct steroid, or even a steroid at all. But in the few times I’ve purchased fake products, each time absolutely nothing was recovered.