How to Unstick Your Sports Cards – Dealing with Bricking

I opened a hobby box of 1993 Bowman baseball cards looking for the Derek Jeter rookie card. It actually was a box break I did for my group. It was a disaster. The cards were glossy and were 27 years old. All of the cards were sticking together. I would peel one card from another and there would be white spots all over the cards. The front part of the card would be on the back side of the card causing the white spots. Even worse, there weren’t any Derek Jeter rookie cards. It took over 30 minutes to open a box of cards. What could I do to fix this?

If you want to see how bad it was for yourself watch below.

So I did some research. I went online, watched videos, and read forum posts. I looked to find whatever I could to try and remedy this situation. Everyone had an opinion but there was no definitive answer. It was time to do an experiment.

The Experiment

I had a box of 1993 Upper Deck Baseball Cards. They were glossy just like the 1993 Bowman cards. I had 3 boxes. I previously opened one and had the same problem with all of the cards being stuck to each other. I would open a pack and 2 sets of 4 to 5 cards would stick to each other. You also hear people call this bricking in the sports card world.

So what did my research come up with? Extreme cold and extreme heat. I read about people putting cards in freezers and heating cards up with a hair dryer. They also put cards in the microwave. So that’s just what I did!

Freezing My Sports Cards

My wife yelled, “WTF is in my freezer? You filled up my guest room with your baseball cards and now my freezer. Get it out now!”

It’s an experiment! It’ll be there for one day. That’s it. I promise!

What a dork.

As I silently wept at night I wondered would this actually work?

24 hours later I took the cards out. Yes the packs were cold but they weren’t frozen. They didn’t warp. So when I opened the pack I thought I was going to see all of the cards in one big block. But that didn’t happen. The cards were still stuck but when they were pulled apart there was a lot less paper loss. You still had 5 to 6 cards stuck together and it was difficult to pull apart. But when you pulled them apart there were no white spots on the cards.

Result – The cards were still stuck together. But there was very little paper loss on each card. It was much better than not doing anything.

The Hair Dryer

My bathroom is downstairs even though my bedroom is upstairs. My wife and my daughters took the upstairs bathroom. So when my wife was asleep I stole her hair dryer and went downstairs. I had 4 packs of cards which I placed in my bathroom on my heated floors. Heaven forbid my feet get cold when I step out of the shower. I am too fancy for that.

So I placed a towel over the cards and proceeded to heat the cards up with the hair dryer on full blast. I read that if you didn’t use a towel that it would just melt the cards. No idea but I didn’t want to take any chances.

So after 10 minutes I stopped blow drying them. I opened the first pack and the first two cards slid right of like a regular pack! I wept with joy, my tears streaming from my face. But it was short lived. It became harder to slide and then just like the other packs there were 4 to 5 cards stuck together. Again, they were still difficult to pull apart, but just like the freezer cards, the cards had a lot less paper loss. As I continued to open each pack it became harder and harder because they were cooling off.

I went back after my initial experiment was over and used the hair dryer on one pack of cards. I did it for 5 minutes and that pack was extremely hot. I came up with the same results. The best way to use this method is to use the hair dryer for each pack and then open them up.

Result – The cards were still stuck together but just like the freezer cards little to no paper loss. This also took a lot less time than the freezer.

Microwave Time!

So I saw someone microwaving cards. It actually was the same set as the one I was opening. Perfect! But I couldn’t remember how long he put the cards in he microwave. Re watch the video? Hell No! I opened the pack because the wrapping has metal in it and put it on a plate. I put the first pack in there for 30 seconds. What could go wrong?

So yeah don’t put the cards in for 30 seconds. They smelled cooked. Not good. They were also warped and there was condensation on the plate, which I couldn’t figure out why it was there. These cards were stuck together really bad and when I tried to pull them apart there was major paper loss. Definitely a fail.

So I opened up another pack and put the cards on a plate again. But this time I put them in for 10 seconds, which was much better. Delicious! So the cards came out pretty hot but they were still stuck. When you pulled the cards off they didn’t have as much paper loss as not microwaving them, but you still had some. Alas, this wasn’t a winner as well.

Result – Have to do it for 5-10 seconds but had alittle more paper loss compared to the other methods used.

Conclusion

While none of the three methods worked as I planned they were all better than not doing anything. At no time could I flip through the cards like I would a normal deck. But factoring paper loss and time, I feel that blow drying the cards yielded that best results. You could blow dry the cards for about 5-10 minutes and they would have the least amount of paper loss.

By the way there were two Derek Jeter rookie cards! Both had small paper loss on the bottom corner of the cards. Boo….

If you want want to see what I did take a look at the video below.

Have any other methods I missed? Comment below so I can try another method out!

Which 2020 Mosaic Basketball Cards Should Your Buy?

With Panini releasing the Mosaic FOTL (First of the Line) Hobby Box today, I wanted to take a deeper look at these cards. They look really nice and have been selling for a lot of money. Is that because of the pandemic and the lack of new cards being released into the market? Maybe. But Zion and his play before the shutdown is the true driving force for the value of this year’s basketball cards.

Zion Williamson – Green Swirl from FOTL box

So Mosaic FOTL which is being released today at 11 am. It is being done as a dutch auction. If you want in on the action – Click Here. The price is starting at $1,000 for the box of 150 cards and every 5 minutes the price drops until there are no more. You will receive a guaranteed auto and they have the exclusive pink and green swirl parallels.

You can check out my podcast where I talk about 2020 Mosaic Cards being released.

I decided to look at the other boxes of Mosaic, their price points, and the amounts of cards in each box. The prices came from Ebay solds. I used the higher sale amounts including shipping.

Cost Per Box# of CardsPrice per Card
Multi Packs$ 40.0015$ 2.67
Hanger$ 60.0020$ 3.00
Blaster$ 70.0032$ 2.19
Mega Box$ 160.0080$ 2.00
Hobby Box$ 600.00150$ 4.00
2019-20 Mosaic Hobby Box

So just looking purely at a cost per card the Mega Box is what you should be buying today. Now this may change but looking at ebay solds gives me this information.

Now I understand that a hobby box will give you an a guaranteed autograph, but can you count on it being a big score? No. It will more likely be a low dollar card. You will also get exclusive silver, blue, purple, pink, gold, and black parallels. But each box has there own special parallel. Which one will be the highest? Time will tell.

If you want to see all the different parallels and which box has what, check out cardboard connection here.

2019-2020 Mosaic Parallel

Now Mosaic parallels looks great, but it still doesn’t sell as well as the silvers. It looks like it doesn’t matter what the set is, if there is a silver, it’s going to sell higher. So I looked up ebay sold prices for some of the top players in this release. See the chart below.

PlayerBase Sold $Silver Sold $
Zion Williamson$ 70.00$ 800.00
Ja Morant$ 35.00$ 280.00
Tyler Herro$ 2.00$ 35.00
Rui Hachimura$ 4.00$ 45.00
Eric Paschal$ 3.00$ 12.00
Lebron James$ 10.00$ 150.00
Cam Reddish$ 4.00$ 20.00
Coby White$ 5.00$ 70.00
RJ Barrett$ 12.00$ 50.00
PJ Washington$ 2.00$ 12.00

The prices on most of these will go down once the hobby boxes and FOTL hobby boxes are opened. This will increase the supply of cards which is why the prices will drop, except for Lebron. It seems like it doesn’t matter how many Lebron’s there are, the price of the card will just go up.

If the Mosaic base or silver cards cost the same as the equivalent Panini Prizm cards. Buy the Prizm Card.

Yes Mosaic looks really nice. But for an investment/flipping purposes Panini Prizm is where it’s at. An example of this is Tyler Herro Panini Prizm Silver goes for $40 raw. The Tyler Herro Mosaic Silver has sold from $35-40. If this is the case I would wait for the price to drop.

And yes I said to buy Panini Prizm in a Mosaic article.

If you want to check out what these cards look like see the video below.

So are you buying? Please comment below and let me know!

Can I Store My Sports Cards in the Garage or Attic?

When you are getting back into collecting sports cards you may have your old collection in an attic or your garage.  It might be at your parents house hidden behind your old toys or behind your porn mags. Wherever you had your cards, they probably weren’t stored that best way possible.  

You shouldn’t store your sports cards in your garage or attic because it will be susceptible to the outdoor climate.  Humidity greatly affects sports cards as well as the cold and hot weather. Having your cards in a temperature controlled environment is the best strategy to keep your cards safe.  

While doing my research I quickly realized that humidity was the biggest factor in destroying your sports cards.  If there is too much water in the air, your cards will get moldy and become worthless. 

How are you Storing your Cards?

Do you keep your cards stacked up on a table? Do you keep them in the same box that they came in? How you store your cards are important in protecting them and keeping them safe. If you don’t care about storing your cards properly then they won’t be in pristine condition if you ever try to sell them. Below are the essential products you need to protect your cards. 

Penny Sleeves – They are essential to protecting your valuable cards.  When you start to collect cards these are the first things you need to buy.  When you open a pack of cards and you hit that rookie it immediately should go in a penny sleeve.   

In this video below I show you how to properly penny sleeve a card without damaging the corners.

Top Loaders – Once your card is in a penny sleeve it needs to go in a top loader.  It’s a hard plastic card holder that you put your card in from the top.  Hence the name top loader.  Duh!!  These card holders come in different types of thicknesses, so they can hold various patch cards, cleat cards, etc.    

Storage Boxes – Once you have them in a top loader you need a place to store your cards.  As much as you love having your cards on the kitchen table, your wife might not.  So you will need a cardboard storage box to put your cards in.  They will be able to store cards that you left unprotected, should be commons, cards in top loaders, and even graded cards. 

Note –  Cardboard storage boxes for graded cards are much taller, you can lie down the graded cards to fit in a regular height storage box but you won’t be able to fit anywhere near the amount as a box made for graded cards.   

If you want to know what I recommend head over to my Resource Page where I show you what I buy to protect my cards.  

Humidity 

Humidity is the biggest killer of sports cards.  Too much moisture and it will damage your cards and make them smell. Then it will go for your wife and kids, then who knows what else it will do.  But I digress.    Okay we get humidity is bad, but what should the humidity be? Well, according to the Library of Congress, where they store our most valuable documents, they keep at 50% and they keep the temperature around 50 degrees which is ideal for paper documents..  

The Polygon group, a company that deals with temperature climate solutions, suggests a humidity range of 45%-55% for your sports memorabilia.  

So it’s safe to say the target humidity you’re shooting for is 50%.  You don’t need to pump the AC to get your house/ room down to 50 degrees.  A regular temperature of 68-72 degrees is fine.    

Okay, so we know humidity is bad. How do I figure out the humidity in my home? A quick search will show you that you need to get yourself a hygrometer.  A hygrometer will measure the temperature and the relative humidity.  Go to my resource page again and you will find the one I recommend based on the research I did.  

The hygrometer I recommend to get.

So, you now have a hygrometer and you realize that your house is humid, what do you do now?  If you are a serious collector and/or you have a fairly expensive collection you don’t want to chance them being damaged.  Go buy a dehumidifier.  This will take all of the moisture out of the air.  You can set it to the humidity you want,which should be 50%. You will have to dump water out of it after a while, but it shouldn’t be something you have to do everyday unless you live in a basement apartment.  

The dehumidifier that I used is almost the exact one as the Soleus Air 70 Pint Portable Dehumdifier and it worked amazing. Checking on the reviews and my previous experience this is the one you want to get. 

I was in a basement apartment so I had to dump a ton of water out.  But if you are storing your cards in a conditioned room on the 1st floor, you won’t have to do it that often. Maybe once every 3 days. There are other dehumidifiers that have hoses that you can run to a drain, but they tend to be pretty expensive.  The dehumidifier I recommend should work perfectly for what you need.     

Can Graded Cards Be Affected By Humidity? 

Your graded cards can be affected by humidity. The slabs act similar to a window.  When there are sudden changes in temperature and humidity, particularly in the cold, condensation occurs. An example of this is during the winter time your card being in the mailbox and then immediately going inside your nice and toasty home.   Now BGS (Beckett) sleeves the cards before slabbing for extra protection which will help, but PSA and SGC doesn’t.  

Now some people like to put a graded card sleeve to further protect the card from case scratching and also to help with sudden changes in temperature.  The type of people who do this are also the ones that put plastic on their sofa cushions.  Can you really trust them?  I guess so, but now it’s got me thinking of my grandma.  

Where Do You Live? 

Depending where you live, you will deal with different concerns about storing your cards.  If you live in North Dakota you would have to worry about extreme cold and humidity.  If you live in Arizona, you will have to deal with extreme heat and dryness.  If you leave your cards to the elements, ie. direct sunlight, rain, snow it doesn’t matter what holder you put them, they are toast.  But most people don’t keep their cards outdoors. But even indoors you have to make sure they stay in a conditioned space and are stored properly. 

Extreme cold with no humidity won’t damage your cards if they are in a cardboard storage box.  But it might chip easier.  If it’s hot and humid you have to deal with your cards getting moldy or your cards may stick together or warp.  Even cards that have been penny sleeved can grow mold in a hot and humid climate. 

In my research I have found collectors, even in conditioned spaces, have had problems with their cards in areas where extreme hot/ cold in humid climates exist.  Making a dehumidifier that much more important.    

What Not to Put Your Cards In

If you are storing cards for investments and to retain value, I suggest not to use binders to store your cards.  If you want to be able to go through your collection with the least amount of headaches then binders are the way to go.  But they also will damage your cards easier and take up a lot of space.  They can be stored on a book shelf, but if you try to pile these on top of each other like cardboard boxes your cards will be damaged. 

How to Buy and Sell Sports Cards on Facebook; Baseball, Basketball, and Football

When I got back into collecting sports cards I was amazed at all of the changes.  I thought I would go on Ebay and just buy a bunch of cards. But using Facebook groups to buy and sell cards?  That’s insane.

Using Facebook to buy and sell sports cards is about building relationships and saving money on fees.  You can buy/sell using different methods like razzes, sports card case breaks, fire sales, and staxx on facebook.  You can also buy/sell single sports cards, team lots, hobby boxes, and complete sets. It’s much easier to make deals on Facebook and you have an audience with the exact same interest as you.  

Building relationships is key to finding great deals on facebook. You should always make comments and engage with members. Having a list of what other members are looking for will come in handy when trying to sell your cards. At the end of this article I suggest some groups that you should join to get started in buying and selling on Facebook.

Here is some terminoloy which you will see a lot of in the facebook groups –

NFS = Not for sale

NFT = Not for trade

PP FF = Paypal Friends and Family

PP GS = Paypal Goods and Services

FS = For Sale

FT = For Trade

PC = Personal Collection

Line a Card = Razz

Razzes

WTF is a Razz?  I just want to buy some cards and you’re talking about a Razz? Yes, it has become one of the more popular ways to sell cards.  Is it legal? Not really, but it’s prevalent throughout all facebook sports cards groups. So how does it work?  

Let’s just say you have a 2019 Panini Prizm Zion Williamson PSA 10 base rookie card.  At the time of writing this it’s worth around $630.00.  

Damn, I can’t afford that?  

But, can you afford $21?  

Now you’re talking.  So how can I get this card for $21? 

Well, what a seller would do is write a post stating that they are selling a 2019 Panini Prizm Zion Williamson for 30 spots @ $21 each.  It will look something like this on the facebook post.

30 spots @ $21 each

85% Buyback

1.

2.

3.

Etc. etc.

You are spending $21 for a chance to win that Zion rookie card. You’re gambling.  Plain and Simple.  But it gives people the opportunity to get a really expensive card at an affordable price.  In this example you have a 3.33% chance of winning that card or a worse way to look at it 96.67% you’re going to lose. 

What does the 85% buyback mean?  If you win, you could either take the card or 85% of the sale price.  So you would get 85% of $630 which would be $535.50.  The buy back is anywhere from 75% – 85%.

There are plenty of people selling cards from $30 all the way to thousands of dollars.  The price per spot can be anywhere from $1 to a couple of hundred bucks.

This could become very addictive.  Be careful. 

Sport Card Case and Box Breaks

 There are Facebook groups that are just dedicated to case breaks and other groups where you can sell cards but the only case breaks done are by the admins of the group.  So what is a case break?  

A case break is where a seller sells a spot, which is a sports team, for an entire case of sports cards.  The seller would then open all the boxes on video where you would see which cards you will receive. You would receive all of the cards from that particular team in that case.     

A case typically has 12 or 15 hobby boxes.  There are some high end sports cards where there are only 2 or 3 hobby boxes per case. There are some instances where you would buy a sports division, ie baseball – American League East, basketball Atlantic Division.  Other times where you would get a player.  

Now you can either buy a team or buy a spot where you would get a random team. There are times when the case is so expensive and there are so few cards that you would only get a pack or two in the box. There are other times when there is only one box per case and you would only get one card from that pack!

The seller has an amount he wants the sell the entire case for.  Let’s just say a seller wants to sell a case for $1500.  There are 30 nba teams and each team is priced accordingly.  Example the The New Orleans Pelicans would be priced $300 and the Brooklyn Nets would be priced $50.  If you are just buying a random spot, all the spots are one price and they randomize who gets what team.

So if we are buying a team and it was The Pelicans, well they have Zion Williamson as a rookie.  This team  goes for a ton of money. The Nets didn’t have a standout rookie so the price for their spot is lower.   So the seller opens the case live and will broadcast on Facebook. All of the New Orleans Pelican players would go to the buyer who bought the Pelicans spot for $300 and the buyer who paid $50 for the Nets spot would get all of the Nets cards.

Now some case breakers just send the hits, other sellers send base cards and the hits.  So what is a hit? It’s either an autograph, relic, or a colored or numbered insert card.  Why wouldn’t they send the base cards?  Some sellers do this as a way to lower pricing on the case.  They would then sell the base cards either on Facebook or Ebay.    

Still not sure what a hit is?  Check out My Article on Baseball Card Inserts so you get a better idea of what they look.

Their are sellers that sell a couple of hobby boxes, or just a couple of blaster boxes because they are just starting out and can’t afford to buy a case of cards.  They would typically do sport divisions, rather than try and get a bunch of buyers to buy a team.  

Please note – their isn’t a guarantee that you will get a hit out of a case.  Their are plenty of times when buying a break and you just get the base cards or even worse you get absolutely nothing.  It’s a tough pill to swallow but it’s the truth.  It’s gambling with better odds than Razzes.  You wouldn’t invest in sports cards by doing case breaks.  But if you just like one team and you don’t want the rest of the teams this may be a cheaper alternative, if you like the action of opening packs.

You can go on youtube and see people breaking cases or boxes of cards.  The link below is an example of me breaking a box of cards.  

Fire Sales

You will see a post with a picture like this.  They’re all pretty much use the same picture.  We get it, it’s a fire sale.  So what is a fire sale? 

A sports card fire sale is where people post cards for sale.  They will continuously post cards in the comment section of the original post. The amount of cards could be in the hundreds. Buyers will then type either sold or mine to indicate that they are buying a card.  You can try and negotiate a price but if someone claims the card at the asking price you lost the card.

These fire sales are typically for lower end cards.  They are cards that you want to move and will take a slightly lower amount based off of sold listings on Ebay. Sport cards that go anywhere from .25 to $5.00, is the sweet spot for a fire sale. But you can sell any type of cards/graded cards worth hundreds of dollars but the cheaper cards tend to do better with this method of sale.  

This is a great place to buy star rookie cards.  However, due to the nature of this sale sometimes people are very quick to type sold that you can’t examine a card thoroughly.  If you are looking to buy raw cards where you can get it graded by PSA, BGS, or SGC for a profit, it will be tough.  But it can be done.  

Once you start buying cards from people you will notice a lot of the same people run fire sales.  Some sales are better than others, but also the condition of the cards are similar.  I bought from someone twice and I noticed the edges and corner weren’t really sharp, or the card wasn’t exactly the same as the one sold (condition wise). I took note and didn’t buy from them again. I bought from another seller and had great success with getting their cards graded.  I wrote their names down and when they were running a fire sale I would make sure to buy their cards as opposed to others.  

Staxx

So you will see 4-5 amazing cards on a facebook post.  You get excited.  It may even make you move a little in your pants.  You want to get these cards, but you see someone running a video with a big stack of cards.  You click to see the video and you are now in the Staxx zone.  What are Sports Card Staxx? 

Sports Card Staxx is where a seller has expensive cards mixed in with less expensive cards. You would pay for a chance to get these cards.  Typically they mix them up like a deck of cards, you tell them a number, and they go through the stack to the number you selected and that’s your card.  

Let’s say they have 20 card stack.  You buy one spot and you tell them the number 5.  The seller would mix the stack up and you would get the 5th card down starting from the top.  It could be a crap card or a monster card.  Once again, this is pure gamble.  They continuously replace the card you one so the odds are the same for each pull.  

So they would show a card like 2018 Topps Update Gleyber Torres PSA 10 which is over $100 mixed in with a CC Sabathia jersey relic card which might cost $3-4 and a Bowman Autograph of some unknown prospect selling for $8, and a base card rookie card from 2019 that sells for $1.00. It’s a total crap shoot.  

I am not a huge fan of these but they have become popular because usually each pick is on the lower end of the sports card gambling spectrum, ie. $5-10.  

Single Cards/ Team Lots / Sets

Pretty straight forward –  people post pictures of the card they want to sell.  They have to coin the card which means you put a quarter or some form of ID to show that you didn’t just steal the picture off ebay.

They also sell team lots and complete sets in a similar fashion.  They just post a price state if they are firm (no negotiation) or OBO (Or Best Offer). You would type sold or mine which would indicate to everyone that you intend to buy the card at the price given.

Hobby Boxes / Blaster Boxes 

Typically admins of the groups sell Hobby boxes or like to Razz Hobby Boxes but some groups allow members to sell them.  Hobby/Blasters boxes should be sold in the same method as single cards or you can Razz it.

You can sell it by pack or by team. If you are just selling one box the best way to sell them is by packs or a group of packs. So it there are 36 packs in a box you would sell 6 spots where you would get 6 packs. Don’t over think it.

Facebook Sports Card Groups To Join

Here are some facebook groups that I like and have bought and sold from them:

Panini Prizm Sportscards

Baseball Card Collectors and Trade ~ Keeping it the Realest!

PSA Graded Baseball Card Collectors & Trade / Keep it Real!

Sports Cards Buy Sell Trade – powered by TX Sports Cards & Memorabilia

Basketball Cards Buy, Sell, Trade – BST Sports Card Group

SVA Card Collectors – We don’t buy or sell cards but you will get great information about the sports card world. Click Here to Join!

If you are looking to make some money flipping sports cards take a look at this interview. George makes hundreds of dollars a month part time flipping on Facebook.

If you join all of these groups you will be well on your way to buying and selling sports cards.  Also, pay attention to what other people do. Especially the ones having success buying and selling cards. Have fun and Buy some cards and go broke!

Best Places to Buy Vintage Sports Cards Online; Baseball Basketball Football

When you’re looking to buy vintage sports cards there are a lot of deciding factors.  Are you collecting an entire set, team sets, or a particular player?  What is your price point? But assuming you know what you want, where is the best place to buy vintage sports cards online? 

Ebay is still the number one place to buy vintage sports cards due to the sheer number of cards that are available.  But you can find great deals on online auction sports card websites, Net54 / Blowout card forums, Facebook groups, and PSA.Com. 

We will discuss each place, giving you the pros and cons.  If you aren’t buying from ebay or online auctions, building a rapport with the seller is an important part of any deal.

I did a podcast on this very topic back in November of 2019. Take a listen.

Ebay
We all know about Ebay. It’s the biggest marketplace for sport cards on the internet. All of the big consignment companies post their sports cards on Ebay as well.  Do you know why? It has the most eyeballs.  You can pretty much find everything that you are looking for. 

But, you might not always like the price.  States now require Ebay to charge sales tax, which is an extra expense that you have to factor in. You can buy as either a Buy it Now or at Auction. The better deals are usually buying through auctions but a lot of the Buy It Now or BIN, as they are called, accept offers. Don’t just buy the card if they are accepting offers.   

Quick and Simple Ebay Tips

1. To get the best deal look for lots.  So if you are looking for 1957 Topps – search 1957 Topps Lots or 1957 near complete sets, or 1957 complete sets.

2.  If the card doesn’t have an offer option, email the seller and ask if he would take a lower amount.  Give them a specific number. If you just ask,  “What’s the lowest you will take?”, you probably won’t get a response.      

Online Auction Websites

I have bought the bulk of my vintage cards from online auction websites. Most auction websites tilt towards vintage cards.  You can find great deals because not everyone can bid on these cards.  You have to sign-up and be vetted to ensure their auctions don’t end with someone not paying or have a less than stellar reputation.

One drawback is they usually only run a couple of auctions per month or one every couple of months.  Another drawback is the buyer’s premium which is added on to the winning bid.  It’s extremely important that you factor these costs into your final price.  They are a minimum of 12.5% and up to 22.5%. You would then have to add shipping and sales tax.  But even with all of these extra costs you can still find great deals. 

I bought many graded singles for way below Ebay solds which I sold on Ebay for profit. You can buy complete and semi complete sets where you can get the best deals. Here is a list of some online auction websites and their associated fees.

  1. Sirius Sports Cards – See chart below for fees.  I usually get the best deals from this website.
  2. Robert Edwards – High End Cards – Graded and Ungraded – Good place to buy sets 20% buyer’s premium + min. $10 shipping fee, plus they charge sales tax for most states.
  3. Mile High Card Company –  High End cards – 22.5% buyer’s premium (paypal) + shipping (cost varies) + sales tax
  4. Clean Sweep Auctions – Been in the industry a long time.  20% buyer’s premium + shipping cost + ny sales tax.  They don’t accept paypal or credit cards. 
  5. Memory Lane Inc. – High End Cards – 20% buyer’s premium + $20 minimum shipping fee over $100 + sales tax.  

Online Auction Quick Tip

Find out all of the fees and create a spreadsheet on google. I would create the spreadsheet like the one seen below for my Sirius Sports Card Auctions. I would then compare this to what I could buy the card for on ebay. This would set my maximum bid for a card I was looking to purchase.


Cost
0Buyer’s Premium – 12.5%
0Subtotal
0.00Insurance 1%
0Total

Shipping – Graded – $3 (1-3) , $5 (4-6), $7 (7-9)

Sales Tax
0.00Final Cost
Some online auction’s send out books which make great reading material.

Net54 and Blowout Forums

Both of these forums have vintage sections where you can buy cards. On Net54 the top left menu bar has a Buy/Sell Cards section. They have auction threads where you can find some great deals on vintage cards. All you have to do is create a user account and your in. Net54 is more geared towards vintage cards but blowout forums has plenty of vintage card threads to keep you busy. On Blowout you just have to scroll down and look for the section Vintage.

On forums it’s important that you engage with other people and build a rapport. If you are just looking to buy sports cards and you aren’t asking/answering questions or trying to be part of the community, you may be missing out on a bigger deal. Answer questions, comment on people’s cards, be active!

Don’t see the set, team, or player you are looking for? Create a thread and start the conversation. Now this isn’t the same as Ebay and it may be harder to find the card you want, but you will spend less and get a better deal. You won’t have to pay eBay’s 10% fee or tax. If using paypal, which you should, you still would have to pay 3%. If you build great relationships, after awhile deals will find you on both of these forums.

Net54 and Blowout Forums Quick Tip

When buying vintage cards from someone, always pay with paypal goods and services and not friends and family.  There is an extra fee that they have to pay but you will be protected if they don’t send you the card.  If you paid friends and family and they don’t send the card then you are out of luck, or SOL, whichever you prefer.


Facebook Groups

There are a lot of people posting some great vintage cards. But just like the forums you won’t be able to get everything you want. But if you can’t find the card you are looking for by searching through posts, just post what you are looking for. Also, like forums, the more you participate with the group, the more you will get out of it. Engagement will help people recognize you and give people confidence about you.

Once you have a smooth transaction they will look for you when they are trying to sell more cards. It’s a win win situation. The more groups you join the better. Some collectors/sellers aren’t in all of the same groups so you won’t miss out on opportunities. Here are two vintage facebook groups I recommend

  1. Daniel Harmon’s Old Time Baseball Cards Buy Sell Trade Show
  2. Buy Sell Vintage Baseball Cards & Vintage Sports Cards (Pre 1980)

You can do a basic facebook search to find more vintage baseball card groups on facebook. You will see a list similar to the picture below.

Facebook Group Quick Tip

When making a deal, especially an expensive deal, make sure you get vouchers from the group.  This is the other buyers/ sellers room the group recommending this seller as a good person to deal with. You can also check the seller’s name on baseball card scammers website database to make sure they aren’t on there.   

PSA.com

A feature that PSA has is a set registry.  If you are collecting psa graded cards, you can register the set you are collecting and keep track (where you bought it and for how much) thru PSA’s website.  From there your set will be ranked compared to other people’s collections from the same year. Now this is where the fun begins.  

When you go to PSA.com and you sign in and click on the top left where it says Set Registry. Go to the top right where it says explore and click and pick which sport you are looking for. From there you will pick a set. Next to the collection’s name it will have an envelope. That is where you can contact people who have the same set as you and ask if they are willing to buy, trade, or sell their cards. You have the list of cards they own so it takes the guesswork out of it.. Email everyone. You now have a direct lead on exactly what you’re looking for.

PSA.com Quick Tip

You don’t have to have sets for PSA to track your cards. If you have any PSA card you can have PSA track the date, where you bought them, and how much they cost. They will keep track of your entire PSA collection. If you ever wanted to sell these cards you would know if you made a profit or not.

If you have any questions or comments – let me know below!

Top 6 Places to Buy and Sell Sports Cards

When I got back into the hobby, I couldn’t believe all of the changes that were made. I knew Ebay had really changed the game and enabled collectors to buy cards that previously were hard to get. But were there other places that I didn’t know about? Well there was!

When I started searching I could’t believe all the different places I could go to buy, sell, and trade cards. Now if you have been following me and my podcast I have shared this information with you before. But if you are just starting out this will be a great starting point

If you haven’t already subscribed to my podcast, what’s wrong with you! Click the link below and subscribe!

  1. Ebay – This is still the go to place to buy and sell sports cards. Ebay changed the game when they started back in the day. The ability to buy cards that people couldn’t get at their local card shops really was a huge draw. Also, the amount of cards that were available drove prices down which made cards more affordable. People complain about their fees, but I feel it’s a small price to pay for the amount of buyers they can attract.
  2. Facebook Groups – Outside of Ebay, facebook groups are the biggest buyers and sellers of sports cards. Engage with the community and you will be buying and selling in no time. Please be warned there are scammers on there. Luckily there is a website for that – Click Here. Also make sure you pay Paypal Goods and Services to protect yourself if they don’t ship the card. If you want to learn how to flip cards on facebook check out this interview! Click Here
  3. Instagram – A great place to post pictures of your cards to buy, sell, trade, or just show off. Instagram trends towards a younger crowd with newer cards being more popular on the platform. You can save on fees if you put the work into your account. Here is an article that I wrote to help you build your following and make some bank bro.
  4. COMC – This marketplace is only for buying and selling sports cards. You send in your cards and COMC will scan and list your cards for you. If someone buys you cards they ship it for you! The best part of Comc is that you can buy from multiple buyers and pay one shipping cost. They also have a feature that you can buy and then list the card without touching the card.
  5. Blowout Forum – They have different sections for each sport, there they talk about each release of cards. Also, they buy, sell, and trade cards on these forums. It’s a great place to learn as well as buy/sell cards.
  6. PSA Card Forums – Similiar to Blowout forums. But they also have set registries where you can see collector’s PSA sets. Take a look at what they are missing from the set and shoot them an email if you have the card for a sale. No guessing what they are looking for, you already know it!

Did I miss any? Please let me know in the comments below and if you found this informative please share!

Who Should You Follow on Twitter for Sports Card News?

So you want to be up to date on the latest sports cards news and you always listen to SVA Card Collectors Podcast, what a cheap plug, but I’m not on 24/7. What to do? Well twitter is by far the best place to get up to date news about the hobby. Instagram may be the better place to buy and sell cards but twitter is the best spot to get information.

It’s not just sports card information you need. You also need information from the sports world which will help you make better decisions on who to invest in. Twitter has a great sports card community, whether it’s baseball, basketball, or football, sorry hockey card fans, you can get a ton of great information. I’m on twitter as well so give me a follow – Svabbcollectors @ twitter.

Listen to my Podcast – Monday thru Friday – Click Here and Subscribe!

Their is no particular order but here is a list of people to follow on twitter so you can get your learn on in the sports card world.

Brent and Beccahttps://twitter.com/brentandbecca – They open hundreds of cases of baseball cards and tell you if some cards are harder to get than others or certain cards are more prone to dinged corners or damage. Great resource to learn about the latest cards that are being released.

Ken Rosenthalhttps://twitter.com/Ken_Rosenthal – It seems like he always gets the scoop on the latest player news for MLB.

Adam Schefterhttps://twitter.com/AdamSchefter – If you want the latest information on football he is your go to guy.

The Breakshttps://twitter.com/WatchTheBreaks – A lot of good information, some live talks, and great back and forth conversation. The flap jack tweets are annoying but he does plenty to warrant being annoyed alittle.

CRT Sportscardshttps://twitter.com/CRT_Sportscards – A smart flipper who opens a bunch of cases and give great advice.

Sports Card Radiohttps://twitter.com/SportsCardRadio – Outspoken about the card trimming scandal. Great source for this and sports card scammers throughout the industry.

From My Group

Here are some accounts that people from my group thought were good resources

Phil HughesClick Here to Follow Him – Former Yankees/Twins pitcher is a big time collector in baseball cards. He opens a bunch of high end cards and also has a youtube channel.

Rob Post – https://twitter.com/Robski3030

Ryan Cracknell – Click Here to Follow

Sports Antagonist – Click Here to Follow

Uncle Rich Klein – https://twitter.com/sabrgeek?lang=en

How to Buy Raw Sports Cards To Get Graded for Profit

I thought I was the first one with this great idea. I would buy raw cards on ebay, get them graded, and they will all be PSA 10’s. Then I will sit back and reap the profits. Well, that didn’t happened. After losing a couple of bucks, maybe a hundred or so, I came come up with a strategy that has worked for me. Again, I don’t get PSA 10’s 100% of the time, but I give myself a better shot at them. So what are some of the things I look for when buying raw cards?

The first thing I look for is centering. It’s the one thing that you can really look at online and know if it’s good or not. To make it easier on yourself make sure when you start out you find a card that has borders. You can take a look at the PSA 10 encased card and then compare it to the raw cards. The more you look, the better you will become at this. You will make mistakes in the beginning but just keep researching. If the price is much cheaper than that rest of the raw cards take a look at the centering! 9 times out of 10 that is why.

If you want to learn even more sign up to receive my FREE sports card collecting course which will be released shortly! Click Here!

If you take the 1st picture you will see that left border is bigger than the right border. Also the top border is bigger than the bottom border. This would get a PSA 9. It’s not a card I would buy.

In this next card, the left to right is much better, ever so slightly off, but the top is slightly bigger the bottom. It’s not terrible. If all other factors are good then the biggest factor in buying this card would be the price. If a psa 10 graded card goes for $125-150 range and this raw card can be had for $40, I would take the chance. If this card is $75 I would look for a different card.

The next thing to look for is the corners. Darker corners sometimes blend into the picture, but also if the corner is white on the front of the card it would indicate that the corner is nicked or not 100% sharp meaning it’s not getting a 10. Most cards on Ebay you can zoom into the card, this is where you can get the best idea of the corners of a card. You looking for white or somewhat rounded looking corners. If you don’t see that then the card should be acceptable. With scans or pictures online you can’t always see 100% everything. Again, we are trying to increase your odds for getting a 10.

The picture below shows the bottom right hand corner of a card. It is sharp and really nice looking. This is a PSA 10 corner.

The top left corner is where we have a question. It doesn’t look as sharp as the bottom right hand corner. This is why it’s important to slow and look at all 4 corners. Looking at the full view all corners look great. But up close you can see there is an issue with this corner.

The edges and surface are the most difficult to determine thru pictures online. The edges may look jagged or fuzzy but it’s not a true indicator of problems. Surface issues may be the top loader or penny sleeve. If they aren’t in either it could just be fuzz on it. Chrome card scratches can be seen but you really have to zoom in to see anything. If your cards does have some issues on it and it’s a bowman chrome take a look at the video I created on How to clean bowman chrome cards.

So this is what I do when looking to buy raw sports cards to get graded for profit. Now I have decided to find a card for you all that I feel will get a PSA 10. You may see a white spot by the black part on the bottom right hand. I believe that it’s just bad lighting. The centering and corners are on point. It is 2018 Bowman Chrome Draft Grant Lavigne. Last sold PSA 10 $128.77, yes I see the one after that at $58.27, but did you see the one before that at $187.50? Buy Some Cards and Go Broke!

Click Here to Bid for this Card and Good Luck!

Sorry but this already sold but you get the point.

My Top 3 Autograph Patch Baseball Cards to PC

I started looking at some autograph patch baseball cards and I really liked them. I would look through them on ebay and always liked the really expensive ones. There had to be other cards that looked good and were relatively inexpensive.

There are 3 things to focus on. If the patch is game worn or player worn. Game worn is exactly what it says the player played in an actual game with the jersey and then it was cut up. Player worn means they were given a jersey, they put it on and then they took it right off and it was cut up. The next thing to focus on is if the card has a logo on it or not. Some people will just not buy a card without a logo. I used to be in this camp, but looking now at these non logo cards, I feel that they are better looking then the Topps counterparts. The last thing to focus on is price. Some of these cards can go for crazy amounts of money ranging from $500-$1,000.00 at the high end. But there are a ton of affordable options, less than $100, even less that $50.00, that look great and would be perfect for your PC.

I spoke about this on my 11/19/19 Podcast – Click Here to listen to the rest of the autograph patch cards I recommend.

Here are 3 of my favorite autograph patch baseball cards to PC

3. Topps Dynasty – The top rookies of the year and Mike Trout go for a lot of money from $500.00 to $1,000.00. But you can get great looking stars and hall of famers for much less. Here is an example – Rickey Henderson Autograph Patch sold for $113.00. Most cards are less than $100 and a lot are less than $50, making this an excellent way to into collecting autograph patch cards. Click Topps Dynasty above to get a card similar to this.

Subscribe & Receive a Link to my Sports Card Release Calendar

* indicates required


2. Leaf Trinity – These player worn, non logo cards are typically less desirable than it’s logo counterpart. However, these cards and patches are beautiful. It’s seems like most of the cards have at least two colors in them. The top rookies still command $300.00-$400.00, but most cards can be bought for under $50.00. The card below is of Travis Swaggerty, one of the top prospects in the Pirate’s minor league system. The card looks amazing and can be bought for $25.00! Click Here to Buy this Card!

1. Topps Inception These are player worn jersey’s but they do have the logo’s on the uniform’s since it is a Topps product. Sticker autograph’s for most so that might turn people off as well. But cards look stunning. They are also relatively cheaper than other Topps products. You can get top rookie prospects from $200.00 and less. Most cards are under $50.00. The Manny Machado sold for $30.00. Click Here to Buy this Card with slightly different patch!

My Top 5 Shohei Ohtani Baseball Rookie Cards to Invest In

I have always been a big fan of Shohei Ohtani. A two way player who pitched great and hit for power and average. On top of it he had some speed as well. He has everything. But it seems the injury bug continues to plague his career so far. I still feel he is a great investment. If he can stay healthy and that’s a big if, then I can see a lot of his cards on the rise.

Looking through his entire rookie card catalogue, I felt that these cards have the best potential to increase in value. I didn’t pick autograph cards, I stuck with cards that had low population, looked great, and were what collectors were looking for. Also cards that were affordable. I spoke about these and other Ohtani rookie cards on my 11/18/19 Podcast. If you want to listen to the entire show Click Here and Enjoy!

If not, just scroll down and find out my best picks. Do you agree? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you want to buy the cards click on the link by each card.

5 – 2018 Topps Fire – Average Ebay sold $10-15.00 – PSA 10 population- 21Update 5/31 – Last sold $20.00 plus shipping.

This card is a really nice looking base card, with low pop, and the red design matches the uniform really well. They are not always on Ebay and the color of the cards matches the uniform which makes it that much better. This is a cheap option to start investing in Ohtani.

4 – 2018 Topps Chrome Update Refractor– Ebay Sold Average $75.00 – PSA 10 Population – 25Update – 5/31 – Last Sold $499.00!

This is a semi difficult cards to find on ebay. But when it does become available it will go for a lot of money now.

Subscribe & Receive a Link to my Sports Card Release Calendar

* indicates required


3- 2018 Topps Chrome Xfractor – Ebay Sold average – $45.00 – PSA 10 Population 89Update 5/31 – Last 3 Sold – $80, $50, and $80.

The Topps Chrome Update Xfractor might be more expensive this is a solid card that is affordable. It also has a low pop which will ensure the price doesn’t get too low.

2 – 2018 Topps Heritage High Number – Action Variation – $85.00 – PSA 10 population 161Update 5/31 – Last 3 Solds – $130, $104, and $103

This is a nice looking card, with some scarcity. Heritage is also very collectible. A must have for any Ohtani collection.

1 –2018 Topps Update Gold – Average Ebay sold $120.00 – PSA 10 population – 17Update 5/31 – Last Sold is $320.00

Comparing this card to other gold cards from 2018 ie. Gleyber Torres, Soto, and Acuna it has the potential to be a great deal.