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Monthly Archives: June 2012

Getting back into card collecting has left a big hole in my collection. Luckily that hole corresponds nicely with the “Junk Wax Era” in card collecting..otherwise known as the 1990’s.

The result of this is that I will end up buying a lot like this

For not very much money. In this case it was $20.00. I really only needed about 20 cards out of the whole purchase but it has given me a few hours of enjoyment.

The highlights included an unopened box of Donruss 1989. Now Donruss 1989 is definitely not anything special. The whole set books out at just a few dollars. But it sure was fun opening the packs. I did it outside on my patio on a warm June evening and it brought me back to my childhood. The best part was just thumbing through them and not needing to put them right into top loaders or worrying about any inserts or redemptions. On the positive side I did get all the puzzle pieces for the Warren Spahn insert. And I could actually make the puzzle with no worries about value.

Today the experience of opening a foil pack is just not the same.

Apparently the person who collected was foremost a wrestling fan.

The box contained about 30 unopened Wrestlemania III OPC packs, plus several wrestling complete sets. I’ll do a separate post on those shortly.

I’ve never been a big basketball fan, so I haven’t gone through those cards in any detail yet.

But I did get this…

My first Michael Jordan Card. Value, about 25 cents.

One of my favorite methods of acquiring cards is to pick up boxed lots from friends, classifieds or ebay. I generally have a $20 limit on these and will buy it based on a handful of cards that I want, knowing I am going to pick up a large amount of fluff along with it.

As anyone doing this knows, these days you are ljust as ikely to get a lot of Proset 90’s or Score cards as anything else.

Every once in a while you get something rare or different or interesting. Like this….

This is a UK Issue 1978 Topps Soccer Card.

I have many other soccer cards, but this is the only one from this set I have.

Topps took over A&BC Gum in 1975, signalling the last A&BC Gum English football cards in 1974/75 and the first Topps cards in 1975/76.

The 1975/76 and 1976/77 sets were printed in the U.S., but Topps set up production in the Republic of Ireland and produced their 1977/78 and subsequent football sets from there under the name Topps Ireland Ltd. (T.I.L.). Topps produced English football cards from 1975/76 to 1980/81 only, as well as Scottish sets.

This set had 396 cards so my completion rate is .0025% but I’ll put it aside and maybe others will cross my path. My general rule is once it crosses 50% then I actively track and pursue the set. No worries about this set for a while.

Here’s the back

Here’s what I like.

Old school look mirrored the North America card layouts. Unlike baseball or hockey there just are not a lot of stats tracked in soccer so really all you get is LGE Apps ( same as GP) and DIV (where the team was at the time. For all you Man U fans please note the top line says Division 2. Yes even Man U get relegated.

For the uninitiated the last category is Goals broken down by various sub groups.

League (regular season)
FA Cup
League Cup

This would be similar to breaking down hockey goals by Playoff and Regular Season and listing both.

Best (worst?) of all is that Jimmy was Canadian! Well he was born in Canada at least. According to the back he was capped by Northern Ireland (1 goal vs Sweden in a 1982 WCQ). This problem continues today with players born in Canada playing for other teams. Owen Hargreaves, Teal Bunbury, Jonathan DeGuzman. Maybe Jimmy was the start of the trend?

After this card was issued Jimmy bounced around a bit and even spent a couple season in Canada with the Toronto Blizzard of the old NASL scoring 8 goals in 49 games.

Just a neat card to find as a soccer fan.

The idea of collecting sports cards, (or anything for that matter) involves a concious decision to be disappointed and frustrated. There will always be that one card or set that remains elusive. The one card that is priced out of your range. The trade that doesn’t happen.

When starting a collection it’s important to set a defined goal. To simply say you collect sports cards is too simplistic. There has to be a range or a theme, otherwise the goal is too large.

I find the best way to normally start your decision is to break down what you do not want to collect. I have almost no interest in Non-sports cards. I have no interest in any cards that are not big 4 sports in North America (otherwise known as Baseball, Hockey, Football and Basketball).

I have no interest in anything that is minor league or regional. I don’t want anything limited edition or 1 of 100 (too elsuive).

I like to finish the sets, the part that anyone could do given the interest, time and determination.

There are a bizzillion card companies that exist with this criteria so it has to be narrowed down even more.

For me the priorities are Hockey, NHL sets issued by OPC from 1969 until they dissapeared in 1994. And then Upper Deck Base sets from 1990 until today. Easy Peasey. Simple.

What throws me for a loop is when I get given or find a bunch of other stuff. It’s hard not to want to complete the 1980 OPC baseball set when you get a box of random cards from a friend and 80% of the set is there.

And then you see some cool 1974 Quaker Oats WHA set which doesn’t fit your criteria but you just want to add.

If you let it you could find your scope getting bigger and bigger all the time.

So. Now that I have a bunch of Football and Basketball cards dumped on me what should I do?