Alternatives to “Or so I thought”?

That chair was very sturdy, or so I thought.
"Or so I thought" means the previous phrase is wrong after a while of consideration. (or something similar) Is there any term/words that can replace "or so I thought" in the same/similar context? (Rephrasing is fine, but not just purely replacing the words, ie. "or so I presumed")

1 answers answer to the question Alternatives to “Or so I thought”?

approxiblue updated 5 August 2015
You can use at first glance, one less syllable.
when first considering something, before having a chance to look at it carefully At first glance the deal looked wonderful, but after reading the fine print he wasn’t so sure. Cambridge
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