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  #1  
Old 01-29-2015, 11:43 PM
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Default Questions for Any Topps Printing Experts Out There...

Because I've isolated some 1962 'green tint' cards that I am convinced are short prints, I need some experts to give me some insight into 'standard' Topps printing processes. This is an extremely frustrating puzzle because I have been unable to locate any pictures or examples of uncut 1962 green tint sheets.

If you have any information pertinent to the following questions, please chime in and add whatever you can to the conversation. Hopefully, some of you guys can provide me with some good, strong facts.

Thanks!

1. Did Topps always produce printing quantities of 88 cards per run?
The green tints run from #110 to 196, which means a total of 87 cards (if we assume the misnumbered card #139 of Hal Reniff fills the spot of card #159). This total includes the #192 checklist card. If there was an additional checklist included (for the upcoming series of cards), that would bring the total to 88 cards.

2. Did Topps 'always' print checklists of the current series as well as checklists for the upcoming series?
In other words, would checklist #192 have been printed in the previous run before the green tints AND also in the green tint run?

3. Very important. When Topps created short prints, was there a 'standard' number of SP's in a print run?
In other words, did they usually short print 4 cards, 8 cards or some other specific amount? Is there a definitive number of SP's based on the mathematics of the printing sheets?

4. One last checklist question. If question #2 (above) is answered yes, was the additional checklist in the run 'definitely' card #277?
You never hear about checklist #277 being part of the GT's, so this could be a very important revelation, adding it to the traditional list of GT's.
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  #2  
Old 01-30-2015, 07:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JollyElm View Post
Because I've isolated some 1962 'green tint' cards that I am convinced are short prints, I need some experts to give me some insight into 'standard' Topps printing processes. This is an extremely frustrating puzzle because I have been unable to locate any pictures or examples of uncut 1962 green tint sheets.

If you have any information pertinent to the following questions, please chime in and add whatever you can to the conversation. Hopefully, some of you guys can provide me with some good, strong facts.

Thanks!

1. Did Topps always produce printing quantities of 88 cards per run?
The green tints run from #110 to 196, which means a total of 87 cards (if we assume the misnumbered card #139 of Hal Reniff fills the spot of card #159). This total includes the #192 checklist card. If there was an additional checklist included (for the upcoming series of cards), that would bring the total to 88 cards.

No, 55 66 77 88 99 110 121 and 132 all occurred. Except for the occasional pulled then subbed card or two, like in 1958, rows of 11 dictated the arrays.

2. Did Topps 'always' print checklists of the current series as well as checklists for the upcoming series?
In other words, would checklist #192 have been printed in the previous run before the green tints AND also in the green tint run? Usually yes from 1961-72. A great example of this is in 1968 where the 2nd series checklist can be found with fine or coarse burlap mesh.

3. Very important. When Topps created short prints, was there a 'standard' number of SP's in a print run?
In other words, did they usually short print 4 cards, 8 cards or some other specific amount? Is there a definitive number of SP's based on the mathematics of the printing sheets? Yes and the number of short prints per series are usually divisible by 11. This works for color variations as well in 1958.

4. One last checklist question. If question #2 (above) is answered yes, was the additional checklist in the run 'definitely' card #277?
You never hear about checklist #277 being part of the GT's, so this could be a very important revelation, adding it to the traditional list of GT's.
Usually it was current series DP checklist, next series checklist SP or regular print
"Constants" above are for 1957-72 with series checklists starting in 1961. There are almost always exceptions though. I don't think it's likely there are green tint SP's BUT that run was printed by a contract printer and not Topps' normal printer at the time so theoretically a change in the normal order of things is possible. Topps used Lord Baltimore Press (in Baltimore but with a NYC office) for most of their earliest sets through about 1960 and then went over to Zabel Bros. in Philly, who had printed Bowman cards, after Lord Baltimore was bought out and changed by its new parent company, International Paper, into a different kind of facility. Specialty work was sometimes done elsewhere, as was overflow work like in 1962.

Last edited by toppcat; 01-30-2015 at 07:22 AM.
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  #3  
Old 01-30-2015, 09:34 AM
savedfrommyspokes savedfrommyspokes is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JollyElm View Post
Because I've isolated some 1962 'green tint' cards that I am convinced are short prints
Darren, what card #'s do you feel are the GT SPs?
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  #4  
Old 02-01-2015, 12:27 AM
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Dave, thanks for the info!

I have some other questions looming here, but for the moment let me engage in some speculation…
For one thing, it seems there are quite a few green tints that are DP's. Whenever you do searches, they just appear way more frequently than the other GT's. Way more frequently. And I have many more of these cards in my personal collection than the other guys. The ones that come to mind are the cards with the crazy lime green backgrounds:
#117 Gary Geiger, #122 Norm Bass, #123 Mike De La Hoz, #145 Barry Latman, #162 Sammy Drake, #171 Dave Sisler, #178 Camilo Carreon, #187 Gene Conley and #191 Jim Brewer.
All have lime green backgrounds and are readily available anywhere you look. To me, there is no way they were printed in the same quantities as the other cards.

Some others have this same phenomenon but are a bit tougher to find, namely #114 Howie Koplitz, #155 Stu Miller and #194 Dean Chance. #139 Babe Hits 60, #139 Hal Reniff (pitching pose) and #140 Gehrig & Ruth also stand out as overly greened cards. Since all of these cards share the same extreme printing problems, I'm under the impression that they were perhaps printed all together in a different sheet setup than the 'normal' green tint cards. You could also include one or two of the pose variation cards, as they are overly greened, but to a lesser extent than the cards already mentioned.

The story goes that Topps contracted with a printer upstate to increase the amount of cards they were printing that year. I haven't seen anything verifiable that points to a specific printer, but some theorize it was a company that produced some 1952 cards for Topps. Again, that's not confirmed. But since whoever did the job had obvious problems with the printing plates, etc., and new layouts were created with each and every photograph being cropped differently, it is certainly not beyond reason to speculate that they didn't follow the usual guidelines for printing Topps cards. Whoever produced these cards did an awful job. There's no disputing that fact. It seems to me that they probably cobbled the entire run together, creating a variety of SP's and DP's in the process. Personally, I think it is very fair to reason that the printer's work in no way conformed to the usual Topps practices with regard to the standard 88/264 card sheet paradigm. Perhaps that's why (I imagine) they were never used by Topps again. Unfortunately, since no one can find an uncut sheet, we may never know.

Now for a question…
If you look at the first 1962 checklist, it includes 88 cards. Since the GT's run from #110 to #196, it is very confusing. Shouldn't the green tints begin at #89 and only go up to #176? In other words, the entire second series? Why is it that the GT's straddle both the second and third series?? Didn't Topps print one full series at a time??
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Old 02-01-2015, 10:58 AM
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The checklists didn't match the print runs and lagged what was actually printed. As an example, Topps would print 110 cards in the first series but only show 1-88 on the 1st series checklist. Then each successive print run would be 88 in number but Topps would always be 22 cards ahead of what was on the checklists by doing this. There were variations on this theme but from 1961 to 1968 and in a lesser way from 1969-71 this was the practice. They did this in a slightly different way from 1957-60 but that was the marketing plan. It was a sneaky way to seed some cards from the next series and keep the kiddies buying. I think this is why a lot of packs are said to be combined 1st and 2nd series packs or combined 3rd and 4th packs for example but in reality they are just from the same run. That's why the next series checklist was always in the prior series run-kids would be able to see they had cards from it already and keep buying. Things would just true up in the high numbers each year.

I have more details on 1962 green prints somewhere but it will take a little while to find it. The printer was likely in Rochester, NY which is interesting because I think they might have made the 1956 Baseball Buttons in that city as well.

Last edited by toppcat; 02-02-2015 at 08:18 AM.
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Old 02-01-2015, 12:04 PM
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Very good information--thanks Dave.
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Old 02-01-2015, 10:55 PM
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With regard to printers, this is from PSA's site:

"Another problem arose early on when Topps faced a higher demand for the second-series (#110 - #196) cards than the quantity they had originally ordered from their contract printer, Zabel Brothers of Philadelphia, PA. Since Zabel was about to start printing the third series cards, additional second series printing plates were accordingly shipped to another printer in upstate New York to handle this increased demand.

The name of that printing company is still uncertain, but speculation has it that Stecher-Traung of Rochester, a leading printer of seed packets, fruit crate labels, and nurseryman's plates, was the production source. (Stecher-Traung is also believed to have printed a portion of the 1952 Topps baseball set, cards which have been found in large quantities in Canada.)

Regardless of who actually took on the job, the plates were allegedly damaged in transit, and the entire second series of cards had to be reprinted. But once they were recreated, there was still one problem: either someone forgot to print the magenta plates, or the magenta color separations were made incorrectly. The result? Large swatches of bright lime green on certain cards and washed-out, yellowish flesh tones on others.

The theory that a second, new set of plates was prepared for the extra cards is supported by the eight pose variations mentioned earlier. The first seven are: #129A+B Lee Walls (facing left and right respectively), #132 A+B (Los Angeles Angels Team card, with and without two small inset photos), #134A+B (Billy Hoeft facing left and straight ahead), #147A+B (Bill Kunkel in a portrait and in a pitching pose), #174 A+B (Carl Willey with and without a cap), #176 A+B (Eddie Yost in a portrait pose and batting), and #190 A+B (Wally Moon in a portrait pose and batting)."

----

Of course, they also say, "This card shows Ruth teeing off against a stadium background, and on the green tint version (#139B), the field is completely green and part of the left-field foul pole is visible." (emphasis added), so you have to take anything they say with a grain of salt.
That statement always drives me crazy, because people act like lemmings and just repeat that description of the card and it is COMPLETELY AND UTTERLY wrong!!! The pole they are referring to is deep in the stands behind the dugout area and could possibly be some sort of support beam, a flag pole or just an odd anomaly. Nobody with even the tiniest shred of knowledge regarding the game of baseball would ever refer to that as a foul pole. It's way behind the batter and in the stands, for cripes sake!!
babe.jpg
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Last edited by JollyElm; 02-02-2015 at 01:02 AM.
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Old 02-03-2015, 06:43 AM
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A bit of a cool revelation here…

I borrowed a page from the pre-war side and started trying to find as many miscut or way off center GT's that I could get my hands on to see if I could see where some of the cards were situated on the phantom printing sheets (so far I've matched about ten pairs of cards). So I put this Kasko here against every single green tint card there is and I couldn't find a match. And it took for-frickin'-ever!! Then I had an idea. Most every person I've talked to about these cards has always been under the impression that checklist #192 with the words “Check List, 3” (with a comma) was the green tint version. That's probably because, as an error card, there are fewer of them around? Not really sure. I assumed the same thing, but it's never been based on anything but accepting the status quo. I decided to grab the scan of what I considered my 'non-GT' version of the checklist and holy heck!!! It matched perfectly (For clarity's sake, I'll point out that the two cards here weren't both scanned at 100% and at the same time on a level plane. They were from different sources and had to be carefully resized. This is why they aren't a perfect fit, just very nearly perfect.)

I believe this to be the first time ever that absolute, verifiable proof has been provided to show the true GT checklist is the version without the comma. Well, to put it more precisely, this proves that at least some of the non-comma checklists are GT's. To play devil's advocate, it is possible that the checklist with the comma was also printed somewhere else on the GT sheets…but I believe that to be unlikely.

It's also important to note that many other non-comma checklists don't share the same precise woodgrain border as the card pictured here, so if you want to make absolutely sure that you have a GT checklist, look to the upper left white corner. The telltale sign is the appearance of those three or four thick, dark, vertical lines.

kaskochecklistGT.jpg

If anyone else has scans of miscut green tints, please give me a shout. They might help in this thankless task!
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Last edited by JollyElm; 02-03-2015 at 07:03 AM.
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  #9  
Old 02-05-2015, 05:55 PM
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Default A couple uncut sheets

Sorry for the super snmall size on the big one. Only photo of the sheet I managed to find.
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File Type: jpg 1962 sheet.jpg (10.1 KB, 262 views)
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Old 02-05-2015, 06:07 PM
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Default Two more

Two more for you
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File Type: jpg 1962 sheet 2.jpg (65.5 KB, 261 views)
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