Non-Sport Update's Card Talk
35 years = too much stuff

This topic can be found at:

September 24, 2015, 02:14 PM
35 years = too much stuff
So, I have been trying to consolidate my many collections (comics, dvds, books, toys, nonsports cards down) and realize that over the past 35 years I have pretty much picked up anything that I had a passing interest in over the years. With talks of moving in a few years when my son leaves for college I am looking at "Trimming the fat" so to speak. Anyway, before I spend hours (days-months-years) making up lists and lists of older card sets and inserts do people collect these are they just relics to old guys like me who still look at them? I am going to try to get down to my top 50 sets and try to trade off the rest.
September 24, 2015, 11:19 PM
I Get in Trouble a lot for saying this but Base sets are Industrial Waste these days. OLD SETS are where money is, but the collector base is REALLY SMALL.......SUPERMAN '40 is a good example... a handful of these have sold recently GRADED for a lot of $$$.

I have sets I like & have base sets for...but couldn't sell them if I tried....BORIS, JULIE & OLIVIA are just a few examples........ Great work but I see these sets in the $3 sets bins at shows.......

do the only good thing you can do, donate them to a local school..... teachers can give them away card by card or as a reading incentive or something... Comic Sets are best for this.......

if dealers feel lucky to get $3.00 for an old set...use em to get someone hooked on Collecting.... the Hobby will be needing them.

real Card shops are LONG gone... Target & Walmart and grocery stores are where most kids get there cards......

Today is a Good Day to Buy!
September 24, 2015, 11:58 PM
DVDs are dead, VHS is deader, everyone is streaming. Could say the same thing about CDs, but vinyl records do sound better for those that know what they are and have a working turn table. Personally I still like to have the disc or CD or record because I have that collector's physical obsession in all things, but I know that most are worthless for anything except dust collectors.

There are some exceptions for material that never made the transfer between formats. Some movies never made it to VHS and some never made it from VHS to DVD. Some are not available to be streamed yet, but they probably will be. Most of these titles are very old or very obscure or many have less features than later versions, so there is little to no real demand, however I would keep anything that can't be found right now.

Comics, books, toys . . . depends on what you are holding. Most of it can probably be given away and just being old means little, however there is a good market for certain iconic items in boxed and mint condition, as well as first editions, so don't get the dumpster without checking auctions first.

Non-sport cards, I happen to agree with Kryten67 on about 97% of the base cards and sets. They are very nice to own when you have the interest in the subject, but the vast majority have almost no value when you go to sell them.

That is why my primary interest is non-sport autograph cards. I think the certified autograph adds inherit value to the card, if nothing else. You can find collectors who want the card and you can find collectors who just want the autograph. That doesn't mean they are valuable and I don't see me selling them anyway. I just hope that they will retain any value they had and I know that they can't ever be replaced by digital copies. Wink

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Raven,
September 25, 2015, 09:18 AM
I haven't been collecting cards for 35 years, but probably for 16/17 years, and I have made the decision to basically dump everything (and focus on just a few sets). I am in the same boat as you - do I sell these things as lots or donate them or toss them? Does anyone want to buy my Star Trek binders once shipping is factored in? I don't know why I wanted these Xena base sets in 2004 but I sure don't want them in 2015. I have gotten to the point where my time is more valuable to me than the time investment to get the $2 after fees I would get for selling these things.

Same thing with my comics - I have 23 long boxes of comics, most of which have not even been looked in for a decade plus. I would like to keep only things I will reread like my Kirby Fourth World books or the massive John Byrne collection I have accumulated, but who really wants my pre-Unity Valiant collection or all of my Ultraverse books?

"For a universe that's supposed to be half Chinese, Firefly sure doesn't have any Asians." -- The Uncomfortable Truths Well
September 25, 2015, 10:07 AM
I have a long box of Ultraverse too! I loved those books when they were hitting the shelves in the 90's!
September 25, 2015, 10:37 AM
David R
I am worse than you guys. I have, literally, over 100 long boxes down my basement

Complete runs of every Valiant, Ultraverse, Chaos (Evil Ernie and Lady Death and the rest), Harris (Vampirella), GI Joe and Transformers from the 1980s until 2005 or so, all Disneys from 1986 to the present, some earlier ones

I also have every single Hulk comic from 1964 to the present (no 1962-1963 ones)

Every single Superman comic from 1954 onwards (including the first issues of Lois Lane, Jimmy Olsen, first app of Supergirl, first Batman/Superman team up in Worlds Finest) etc

And the collection keeps growing...
September 25, 2015, 02:35 PM
Those are some impressive Runs. I got a lot of 10 comics from the 50's 5 or 6 years ago and sold them to an online shop for store credit. I gave the store credit to my son who (9 or 10 at the time) to use it on cheap Hulk comics. In the end he is about 60 issues shy of an Incredible Hulk run from 1962 to Last year. He gave up on single issues last July.
September 25, 2015, 05:28 PM
David R
I started collecting the Hulk when I was 5, in 1978. I was hooked on the Bill Bixby TV show, and my dad would pick up the monthly issues for me on the newsstands

In the early 1980s, he took me to comic shows in NYC and we picked up everything back to 1964, for $ 3 to 4 per comic, except for Hulk 181, the first full appearance of Wolverine which Dad bought for me in 1982 for (gasp!) $15 dollars. My father didn't want to pay the price, as he thought it was too much !

I kept going with the Hulk for the next 20 plus years. I think they are up to Volume 5 or so now, as the original series ended in the late 1990s, and they kept starting up again several times

Regarding the Superman books, I started with those when I was about 12, and by the late 1990s, mostly through cons and mail order catalogs I had it all back to mid-1954, before they became super expensive and beyond my reach

I think the most I ever paid for a Superman book was for Jimmy Olsen # 1, from 1954, about $ 500. That was back around 1998 or so
September 26, 2015, 12:23 PM
Have a lot of cards as well, non-sport, sport, as well as oddball stuff! Worse thing is, stuff, players and sets which were hot a couple of years ago, are pretty stone cold now! Rookie cards are the worst, if you are into sports as well, as they are ho t one minute, disappearing into the woodwork the next. TV and movies cards are just as bad, as they come and go, like the seasons! I pretty much stay with the older stuff, unless it's a show that I like, or find a character I want to collect, then even if it does go down it is still something that you like! People buying cards, hoping to become rich, found themselves buying a whole lot of product and losing a lot of cash doing it! I collect what I like, whether it goes up or goes down is fine, because it is something that I want in my collection!
September 27, 2015, 04:17 AM
Having just moved longer term from Australia to UK, this is what I did (and it was painful).

Comics (~ 10,000) were dumped. Books (~1,000) were sold to a second hand book shop as a job lot, about $2 per book and he only took them because they were basically in mint condition. Sketch / auto / costume cards I stripped out of their sets and kept. Base and general inserts I gave away or dumped.

I have kept a few current/core collection (Warehouse 13, Continuum) and hard to replace items (Superman red holo set). I will sell off the sketch / auto / costume and more valuable inserts as individual items, or sets in some cases.

I went from a storage room + ~10 bookcases + 2 wardrobes of space down to a single set of drawers/shelves for my collection.

I kept all my CDs even though I could have converted to MP3. I also kept a couple of musical instruments, sold the others in Australia and bought some replacements in UK.
September 27, 2015, 11:06 AM
I put out a box of Valiant comics at our tags sale this weekend and sold two and I was asking ten cents a each, lol. Threw them in the donation pile for Savers.

Box breaks, reviews and more on our YouTube channel!
September 27, 2015, 12:40 PM
It's not so much the type or quality of these items we have collected at the time we need to get rid of them, the problem is finding access to other people who are interested in them. It's easy to become too pessimistic and sound like most of this stuff we have accumulated so carefully is worthless. It's not, it might be real treasures, it's just worthless to most people. Wink

If you took a cross section of 100 random people, how many would be buying comics? Sports cards? Non-sport cards? VHS tapes? Holiday ornaments? Figurines? Plates, etc.? Probably only a handful, maybe less.

So when you go and put these things at a table in your yard sale, or at a flea market or go to some general antique store, it's not surprising that there are no takers. So you go to a hobby dealer and he doesn't want more old inventory and he needs his cash for the new stuff.

It gets depressing when you know the value of these items and you can't seem to give them away, but hold on to them if you can. There are people who would love to find this stuff at a reduced price and it would make their year. It's just really hard to connect without a good network of collectors, and I am speaking of that old physical network that used to exist before the internet reduced everything to its lowest value. Good luck guys.
October 01, 2015, 09:41 AM
Interesting discussion.

Going through the same process as you barobehere.

I have reached out to a few consignment/auction houses as was told basically collections post-1985 are very difficult for them to sell and try selling them on eBay, but to be honest, the non-sports cards from the late 80s and 90s have very little resale value in the marketplace today.
Locally at some of the comic, record and collectable shops told the same thing.

Will not deal with the BS on eBay, did that a couple years ago and that was enough for me.

So at this point plan on going through all the collections and probably eliminate 80 to 90 % of it.
Not going to play games and have people cherry pick stuff or be insulted more than I have been already so some of the stuff I will donate to a place I have been sending my extra cards in Kentucky and then probably throw the rest away.

"We have in fact, two kinds of morality, side by side: one that we preach, but do not practice, and another that we practice, but seldom preach."
October 01, 2015, 10:21 AM
Years and years ago I saw a piece on 60 Minutes in regards to paintings by Van Gosh, Picasso, etc, and the journalist asked the person being interviewed why they would pay millions for this artwork. The person answered that the world would always be willing to pay for the best, and said something that changed my collecting; " One ten karat diamond will always be worth more than 10 1 karat diamonds." I try to collect the best in a set, and have stopped wasting my time with these base sets, and sets which frankly are dumb. The hell with the Cracker Jack- I want the prize...
October 01, 2015, 11:59 AM
I agree with you boadster in terms of value and investment potential. Given the old quantity versus quality agrument, quality always wins. But it also depends on whether you view non-sport cards as a hobby or just something that may appreciate in value until you are ready to sell.

If it's investments you are after, comics and cards are just not very high on the list.

If you are in it for the hobby and have been doing it for a long time, then you are going to accumulate a lot of cheap **** that isn't worth much in pieces, but as a whole it is a focused collection.

Ten cards does not make for a card collection, not even if they are the best ten cards. What it means is that you have the money to own them and there's nothing bad about that. Wink
October 01, 2015, 01:34 PM
Originally posted by Raven:

What it means is that you have the money to own them.

No, you used to have the money to own them, now you just own them and have no money. Big Grin

Come, it is time for you to keep your appointment with The Wicker Man.
October 01, 2015, 01:39 PM
Raven, I agree with most all of your point, except I would retort that I see it both as a hobby and as an investment. I think a shrewd collector (not a packrat) is always trying to make his/her collection smaller and tighter but better. The real trick- the 64K Question, is what is better? I don't want to have my kids think of me as Sanford and Son someday, where they have to wade through mountains of junk. I would rather have a small collection of the best stuff, and teach them that less is more sometimes...
October 01, 2015, 03:30 PM
If I treated it as an investment, then I wouldn't own most of the cards I own(ed). For me, the fun is in the collecting - finding and completing. After all, I am perfectly happy to spend money on other hobbies and leisure activities. I don't expect to make a profit when I play a sport or go to a concert, why should I expect to make a profit from my card collecting?

The pain of getting rid of stuff when I moved was not the financial cost, it was the emotional cost of breaking up a collection that I had spent considerable effort in creating. I obviously focussed on the more valuable items in deciding what to keep, but there were cards I kept that reflected other priorities as well.
October 01, 2015, 05:28 PM
As I am going through things. My focus is sets that I truly care about. Did I watch Smallville every week when it was on? Yes. Did I wait years to finally finish all the Inkworks sets? Yes. Do I still look at these sets? Yes. SO, they are keepers.

I collected the Rittenhouse Twilight Zones rather diligently from Series I til last year. I found I never went back to the base sets or inserts and I had about 40 of the 130 autos that I loved. The rest, not really. So, I kept the 40 autos and the rest have either sold or will be sold soon.

I collect because it is something I love to do. Just have to take the time now to trim it down. Maybe when we move in a few years we will have a large enough house where I can store/hoard/display my collection. Maybe I will get a smaller house or move overseas. That is why I am doing it. I appreciate all the comments too (Tangent gets a gold star-the emotional part is the hardest part-so you understand my attachment issue with my stuff).
October 12, 2015, 08:54 PM
Just to follow up. Started to go through my collections again and I saw a ad looking for non sports cards. They said "half of book value nah
do you know someone who does that? even 5% of BV? let me know"

It is sicking how what you have is always garbage but what the other guy has is gold.

I am tried of being insulted and I am seriously thinking of donating it all to Commons 4 Kids .

Guess it happens when shows are not around anymore and people move on to the next in thing..

Last year I boxed up most of my Scifi books, 9 long boxes of 45s, other lps, VHSs, DVDs and other stuff. The van was full to the top. Took it to HPB. Was there for about two hours and left with $120. Got raked on the deal but wanted the stuff gone.

Well, good luck to everyone that is thinning out your collections and hopefully you will be treated better than I have been.

"We have in fact, two kinds of morality, side by side: one that we preach, but do not practice, and another that we practice, but seldom preach."