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Too many Star Wars sets
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I am curious, and want to take a temperature here. I only collected Star Wars Autograph cards. I put together 2 of the 2001 Topps Evolution Auto sets- one for each of my sons. I then went to the Heritage set in 2004- 3 cards only, so that was easy, and did 2 of the Evolution Update sets in 2006. Then Topps Widevision, 30th Anniversary, and a host of others have come out since then, and for the most part, its the same cast of characters (Hamill, Fisher, Baker, Mayhew, JEJ, etc.) again and again. Now this year there are 6 or 7 sets coming out- albeit to cover the new movie, but we know Topps will ride that train until the wheels come off. I, perhaps mistakenly, have put a considerable amount into building these, and am somewhat jaded now that the card company just keeps on the same tripe, but now there are numbered, holographic, and even cards on wood already. Am I the only one who thinks this is kind of crappy of the company to do? Is it asking to much to have these things be worth something some day? I refuse to do any new product, and I am not alone. A gent with a great collection has an eBay username of Jediblaster0, and he and I talk via email occasionally. We bought a lot of the big stuff, but neither he or I are touching this newer stuff...Curious to hear thoughts...
 
Posts: 31 | Location: Rochester, NY | Registered: September 09, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Well, you pretty much have it all, autographs-wise, so there's no need to buy the new stuff for that, since it's been mostly repeats, with the big exception being they've got a handful of autos from Harrison Ford in some of these recent sets (although you'd be better off getting one of those Fords from the secondary market anyway, given how much you'd have to break to have a real chance at finding one, and the high cost to do that with no guarantees.

With a collection like yours, I would pick up the occasional new signer that makes it in from time to time, but really, they are selling the same stuff, over and over, especially where the autographs are concerned. The new cast signatures in the proper "Awakens" set will surely inject some new life in the pursuit. those doldrums, at least.

If you're not a sketch-guy, coupling that with the autograph repeats, there's no real upside to someone with a collection like yours to pay the money for the sealed stuff to try and get what few big hits remain for you.

That said, the base and regular chase cards have been pretty outstanding. I find myself just buying "mini-masters" to get those, usually the whole set for about the cost of a hobby box. The regular base and chase are surely worth around $80. We used to spend $40 on boxes of Star Wars Galaxy III (for instance) when there was no chance of getting any big "hits" out of that.

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Posts: 2866 | Location: California | Registered: December 23, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I appreciate the thoughts CPF. I was a Sportscard collector, and had put together a run of Mantles for each of my 2 boys, but had an epiphany that the Mantles were a bad investment. There are too many of them (sets from 51-69), and the next generation (my boys) were not interested in the least. I got into the SW sets b/c they loved the movies and it gave me something to quest. I was fortunate to sell the Mantles, b/c if you go to a National now, there are a ton of dealers pushing those and trying to move them. I just wonder if this group are set builders who enjoy the chase, or are there considerations of future value, and the level of that. Those that want to see the SW sets, and my Superhero autographs, can see them here; http://www.psacard.com/psasetr...omposite.aspx?c=9447
I was into the sketches for a little bit, but moved away from them. I like some of them, but am sticking with the autographs...
 
Posts: 31 | Location: Rochester, NY | Registered: September 09, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Those are some sweet cards you've got there boadster. Thumb Up Now I know where all the Downey autographs have disappeared to. Big Grin
 
Posts: 1771 | Location: The Pizza Capital of the World | Registered: September 14, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by boadster:
Am I the only one who thinks this is kind of crappy of the company to do? Is it asking to much to have these things be worth something some day?


Well yes, sort of.

The difference between Mantle cards and Star Wars cards, apart from the years and the technology, is that Mantle trading cards were designed to be played with by kids. They became serious collectibles for adults in the late 70's and early 80's, but his first cards were issued in the early 50's. By that time many had been destroyed or were left in poor condition, so the depletion was natural.

The Star Wars cards are created for the sole purpose of being collectibles. There will be a ton of retail product coming out beginning this year and that won't be worth much. But the limited hobby cards and the accompanying hits will arrive and will be carefully preserved by collectors. Most of these cards are going to have peak value when the boxes open and go down from there. A few may go up, especially if it's the new cast, but even with those there is such hype that already it's factored in.

I just think that future value doesn't factor into it and the whole card investment idea is down the drain. You can still make money flipping cards if you are lucky and do it early on, but you can't make money holding new cards because they will become old cards while you are doing it. And the next product in that line will become the new ones everyone wants. Wink
 
Posts: 7119 | Location: New York | Registered: November 20, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Moneywise, I think there are also too many Star Trek and James Bond sets. I kept up for a while but now I'm falling way behind. I simply can't afford them any more, as much as I love all the sets.
 
Posts: 1799 | Location: USA | Registered: November 08, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Logan- you are right- I have been on a kick for the RDJ cards. I think those have potential..
Raven- the Mantles were produced in decent quantities- some were double-printed, and he was one of the cards people kept because he was so popular. They also had 3 or 4 Mantles cards in each set- the All Star version, League leader, and dual cards, where he is seen hugging Maris, Aaron, Berra, etc...I agree that most cards- 99%- will never go up from their initial prices. Hell, I remember selling a Brady Quinn rookie autograph for $140 when it 1st came out. I am happy I have the Evolution sets, as they are the "rookie" autographs of these people. I know Topps has to keep producing. I just think, at some point, they are, by their actions, hurting those who got in early and purchased their wares. The reason I stick with the autographs is that they are the most limited. Base sets and parallels of base sets do absolutely nothing for me...Thank you for your thoughts!
 
Posts: 31 | Location: Rochester, NY | Registered: September 09, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Logan- I wanted to expand on my comment to you. I have done cards my entire life. My best friend's older brother used to pay us to do his paper route with baseball cards from 1972-74. I have collected my whole life. I have been jaded by the risk that sportscards have. I was fortunate that I did not get hit by the crash of the cards of Roger Clemens, Bonds, Sosa, or A-rod, but I knew people that were all in on Clemens rookie cards. I liked the SW sets for a while, but that has lost luster. I think, in trying to look at it dispassionately, that the Superhero cards are the only place to be now, for the following reasons;
1) Superhero movies are this generations defining characteristic. We know what movies are coming out thru 2021 already, and its not slowing down
2) this generation of kids is wearing, playing with, seeing, and buying products that have superheroes
3) Comic-Cons have popped up in any city worth its salt. I went to the one in Phily last year. It was a giant zoo. 28000 people were there just on Saturday.
4) Hero cards seem more insulated. when Bonds was busted- his cards sank. Carrie Fisher, however, was at one point a narcotics fiend, and she is still beloved and her values hold.
5) Shows like the Big Bang Theory celebrate the heroes as well. Shows like Gotham, Arrow, Flash, Agents of Shield, Agent Carter, and Supergirl- coming this fall- add to it.
What's great about these cards is they are movie specific, limited, and clearly delineated. Some, like Chris Hemsworth, sign for every movie, and multiple types of cards. RDJ only signing for Iron Man is great, and some online have called this the "holy grail" of superhero cards. In addition to my kids liking them now, I am hoping that 20 yrs from now, that the next generation will see how limited these are, and that the big spike is yet to come. Curious for your thoughts...
 
Posts: 31 | Location: Rochester, NY | Registered: September 09, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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As a card collector for 35 years, I can say that Topps has gone a little crazy with the volume of sets if you are set completest but also they are issuing sets at different collector levels.
Kids: Star Wars Rebels
Mid range collectors: Chrome Perspectives
High End: Masterpieces
Specialty: Empire Strikes Back Illustrated

Each of these that came out within the last year and a half -certain markets would go after one or two but when you try to hit them all-Wow, you are in overkill territory.

In the end, Star Wars is one of the most iconic properties in the world so if people are buying, new sets will be made.
 
Posts: 5524 | Location: Meridian, Mississippi | Registered: November 23, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by boadster:
Logan- I wanted to expand on my comment to you. I have done cards my entire life. My best friend's older brother used to pay us to do his paper route with baseball cards from 1972-74. I have collected my whole life. I have been jaded by the risk that sportscards have. I was fortunate that I did not get hit by the crash of the cards of Roger Clemens, Bonds, Sosa, or A-rod, but I knew people that were all in on Clemens rookie cards. I liked the SW sets for a while, but that has lost luster. I think, in trying to look at it dispassionately, that the Superhero cards are the only place to be now, for the following reasons;
1) Superhero movies are this generations defining characteristic. We know what movies are coming out thru 2021 already, and its not slowing down
2) this generation of kids is wearing, playing with, seeing, and buying products that have superheroes
3) Comic-Cons have popped up in any city worth its salt. I went to the one in Phily last year. It was a giant zoo. 28000 people were there just on Saturday.
4) Hero cards seem more insulated. when Bonds was busted- his cards sank. Carrie Fisher, however, was at one point a narcotics fiend, and she is still beloved and her values hold.
5) Shows like the Big Bang Theory celebrate the heroes as well. Shows like Gotham, Arrow, Flash, Agents of Shield, Agent Carter, and Supergirl- coming this fall- add to it.
What's great about these cards is they are movie specific, limited, and clearly delineated. Some, like Chris Hemsworth, sign for every movie, and multiple types of cards. RDJ only signing for Iron Man is great, and some online have called this the "holy grail" of superhero cards. In addition to my kids liking them now, I am hoping that 20 yrs from now, that the next generation will see how limited these are, and that the big spike is yet to come. Curious for your thoughts...


I see what you're saying. 20 years from now, the kids of this generation will then be 30-40 years old and looking to recapture fond memories of their youth. So the superhero auto cards of today have just as good a chance as any at increasing (or at least holding) their value. I do think we're in the beginning stages of superhero fatigue though so we'll see what happens. I think A-listers who helped make their characters iconic like Downey and Jackman will always be sought after though. The others I'm not so sure about. A few years ago I was convinced that the sets that had the best chance of going up in value were the shows or movies that already had lasting appeal -- like Star Wars, Star Trek, Twilight Zone, James Bond, Harry Potter, etc. But now I'm not so sure. It seems like non-sport is becoming similar to sports in that it's a "what have you done for me lately" hobby. People only seem to want what's hot right now and once it's old news, they move on to the next thing. A perfect example is people spending hundreds of dollars for the attractive young actresses of today. I wonder what those cards will be worth in 20-30 years when they're not so "young and hot" anymore.

As far as Star Wars goes I think it's just too much too soon. I highly doubt any license in this hobby can support this onslaught of sets in such rapid succession. There's only so many collector dollars to go around and every year it gets spread thinner and thinner. I remember when Star Wars 30th came out Harrison Ford was selling for $10000. Anthony Daniels was $1500. Carrie Fisher was worth $1000. And now look at the prices (aside from Ford). It wouldn't surprise me if eventually you were able to buy a Daniels, Hamill, or Fisher for under $100 each and a Ford for $300. That's the direction this is going.
 
Posts: 1771 | Location: The Pizza Capital of the World | Registered: September 14, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Good points, but I think it'll be a long time before Ford is $300. He just hasn't signed very many cards, and would be a great "get" for the other stuff he's done even were he not in Star Wars. The others, especially Hamill and Fisher must have thousands of certified autograph cards by now.

As for tangible collectibles like trading cards in general, and with non-sports in particular, I used to think mine (I'm 44) was the last generation of people who would be interested in them, but it now looks like there's at least one more after that.

Even so, I wouldn't count on too many more to follow. We are well on the way towards being a "virtual" world in every just about every way, and I don't think our hobbies will be spared that evolution. Sports cards are vastly more popular, and produced in much great numbers as a result, but I think eventually, even those won't be made.

The writing's definitely on the wall for non-sports when the 20 thousand (or so) boxes of "Journey to the Force Awakens" is considered a massive print run. In the 1990's they would have made 20 thousand cases of this.

On the upside, I might be wrong about this, and if actual cards do somehow continue being made, and the production should even increase, these low run sets will be very popular as future new collectors go back to pick these up only to find there's not a whole lot of it out there.

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Posts: 2866 | Location: California | Registered: December 23, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post



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I am happy to be in a forum that knows these cards as well as I do. I still go to sports-cards shows, and when people ask what I buy, they look at me like I'm a Martian...
I think there will always be a place for the tactile thrill of opening cards and getting a hit. I read some of the "state of the hobby" thread on here, and I agree with the person that said that base sets are dead, unless they are given away to get kids collecting, or, in my instance, I used them to try to draw the pictures. I do think the autographs will always be vogue, but only a few. I think RDJ is a no-brainer, Hemsworth is in a bunch of stuff, and the most Harrison Ford-esque of all might be Chris Pratt. Between GOTG, Jurassic World, and the next Indiana Jones, he is on the fast track..
 
Posts: 31 | Location: Rochester, NY | Registered: September 09, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by boadster:
Raven- the Mantles were produced in decent quantities- some were double-printed, and he was one of the cards people kept because he was so popular. They also had 3 or 4 Mantles cards in each set- the All Star version, League leader, and dual cards, where he is seen hugging Maris, Aaron, Berra, etc...


boadster - All Topps baseball cards of that era were overproduced because they were not being sold to any "hobby". They were meant for kids and were sold in every candy store, newspaper stand and 5 & 10. There were even rumors that Topps dumped unsold cards, including the Mantles, into the East River when a certain year was up. I don't know if that is a fact, but it makes for a good story. Wink

Regardless any high number Mantles that were in the last series released were always short printed, because by that time it was thought that the demand was lessening as the season progressed. You are correct that certain years cards were doubled printed, but most were not. As for those other cards that had Mantle on it, they got a certain premium over other RBI or Leader cards, but while you can technically say they are Mantle cards, it's only the individual player card that really is counted and gets the best money. And of course the condition grade is really key, just because there are still a lot of these around despite the years and the natural depletion.

In conclusion, I really wish that my father had saved those 3 Mantle rookies that he claimed he had. Alas he did not know the future. Big Grin
 
Posts: 7119 | Location: New York | Registered: November 20, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Raven, I agree, and knew all of this. The 1952 Topps were the ones dumped. I owned a run of the Mantles from 55 Bowman thru 69 Topps- one of each for each of my 2 sons. Average grade was a EX 5 or so. As you are correct, know also that not all collectors are as nuanced to stick to the regular issue. I have watched for 25 yrs collectors buy the other- in general less desirable Mantles because they didn't know the subtleties- or consider- or have the funds for- the regular issue card. I have been to 5 Nationals- 2 in Baltimore and 3 in Cleveland, and took my 12 yr old to the last one in Cleveland a yr ago. Even he commented how every damn table was full of Mantles, and the dealers were trying to move them. Why? Because there are a ton of them, and the next generation does not hold them in the same regard as the 55 yr olds. Now, to be fair, I like having these kind of conversations with dealers, and there are definitely 2 schools of thought. Some see what's coming, and are trying to divest themselves of them because they do not want a lot of capital tied up in Mantles, and those who either have loyal collectors still buying these, or they themselves have not ever thought these thoughts. Some are too far in the forest as fans themselves to see the trees. From a cold, Vulcan perspective, this is neither irrational or unsurprising. Mantle used to be in the top 10 for HR's, and is now in about 20th place, having been passed by the likes of Pujols, A-Rod, Bonds, Thome, Sosa, and Griffey. To tie this back into non-sport, I completely agree with the notion that autographs are the only way to go, but it has to be a product or character that has enough of a following, and has the staying power, to warrant such an investment. I just saw the ad for the Penny Dreadful cards, and I was like, "who?"
 
Posts: 31 | Location: Rochester, NY | Registered: September 09, 2015Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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That is the beauty of the non-sport market these days boadster. You have your franchise titles and you have these smaller sets that are aimed at their fans only. Some are marginal TV and cable shows, but the diversity is a good thing if the set is well made. I hardly ever watch Castle anymore and I caught only a few episodes of Psych, but I have quite a few of the autograph cards and they are favorite sets to me.

And back to the topic of Star Wars, this flood of cards is not going to stop and it does have an impact on the cards from prior sets.

I think those values have peaked and are now softening pretty much across the board. There are more limited cards, and that counts for something, but the rookie card concept does not really hold much weight in non-sport. Once someone important signs an autograph card for the first time, it may have high triple figure value. As they continue to sign in other sets, that original card starts to erode a bit because the demand slacks off. Logan used the term "what have you done for me lately" and that's very true. That is a carry over from sports cards also, the prized rookie who has done nothing yet is more valuable than the Hall of Famer. New is always better and old may be hardly remembered. Wink

Why buy a more limited autograph card that you can barely afford from a first time set, when you get the same autograph in a 4th generation set for half the price? Some collectors might say they still prefer the first one, but just the increase in supply will make them want to pay less for it.

They should put a hold on retrospective Star Wars sets now that a new trilogy is starting. They should put out two sets a year at most, one would be better, and that's it. They are not going to do either one! Big Grin
 
Posts: 7119 | Location: New York | Registered: November 20, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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For the last 10 years I guess I have preordered star wars boxes, maybe just 3, sometimes a case. I have none on order at present. Do your hear Mr Topps "none". I just don't know what to do. Just too many sets. Its hit saturation point, and I guess I have hit a haitus.
 
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I have collected every Star Wars set since 1977. However, I finally had to pass on one, the super expensive one that came out in early 2015 (Masterworks ?) where the cheapest base set you saw on ebay was like $ 600
 
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As Yogurt famously said in Spaceballs...
...Spaceballs 2, the search for more money!

Big Grin Twak

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Yet another Star Wars set is coming December 18 -- "Topps Star Wars High Tek". I never even knew about this one. Here are the details via Beckett.com:

http://www.beckett.com/news/20...galaxy-far-far-away/
 
Posts: 1771 | Location: The Pizza Capital of the World | Registered: September 14, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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But not just another set . . .

112 base cards, 1 pack per box, 9 cards per pack/box, 12 packs/boxes per case, 1 auto or sketch per 9 card pack/box.

No price stated. Big Grin

I really like the look of the Tek cards and if the autograph list has the big names and the sketches are quality I actually think this could be an impressive product. It's just a darn shame that Topps drops it right before the holidays and at the tail end of all these other Star Wars sets. Twak
 
Posts: 7119 | Location: New York | Registered: November 20, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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