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Old 11-05-2018, 09:13 PM
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Shon
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Default Most Effective Method for Vintage Set Builders

I am new to the forum and would like to solicit experiences of vintage set builders as the pertain to the most effective means of completing/collecting complete sets.


I started my vintage set collecting endeavors by purchasing a complete 1968 set ($1200) that would probably grade in the VGEX-EX range with a few EXMTs and Gs scattered throughout. My preference is to have my sets in EXMT with stars in NMT if not to expensive. I can tolerate a few EX+ mixed in the set for "non-important" cards. As a result, I spent a considerable amount of time upgrading and may have erased all initial savings. I am not certain of my total spend on the set.


As part of an experiment, I decided to complete my next two sets (1965 and 1966) by acquiring all cards along the way with the hopes of not having to "upgrade".


The 1965 set went smoothly and finished with a total spend of $2797 for a set in EXMT or better with all stars at EXMT or better.


The 1966 set has been another experience all together. I am currently sitting at a spend of $3229 with two cards remaining that will likely add at least another $150. There is no doubt that I failed to consider the cost of the high # and SPs in 1966.


Data conducted during my experiment has proven "inconclusive".


My question to the readers is: do you believe it is most efficient to purchase a complete set or assemble the set from scratch? I am considering a jump to 1967 or 1964 next.

Last edited by sfh24; 11-05-2018 at 09:17 PM.
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Old 11-05-2018, 09:30 PM
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Buy the complete set.
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Old 11-05-2018, 09:46 PM
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I am finding that complete sets or at least large partials are the best buys. I always said I wanted to build my sets a card at a time and have control over each card, but I now see that led to spending more money and bogging down and abandoning sets. Buying complete sets or large partials still allows me just as much enjoyment as I work through them and upgrade if needed.

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Last edited by vintagebaseballcardguy; 11-05-2018 at 09:46 PM.
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Old 11-05-2018, 09:52 PM
cesarcap cesarcap is offline
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Having done both (buying complete and lot by lot/card by card), buying complete sets is easier and cheaper. Not as fun however. Also, I've offset some of the upgrades costs by selling cards or trading.

BTW, I have extra 67's and would be interested in trading for 68's.

Cesar
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Old 11-05-2018, 09:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagebaseballcardguy View Post
I am finding that complete sets or at least large partials are the best buys. I always said I wanted to build my sets a card at a time and have control over each card, but I now see that led to spending more money and bogging down and abandoning sets. Buying complete sets or large partials still allows me just as much enjoyment as I work through them and upgrade if needed.

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My inclination is similar. I have tried to find similar sets on Ebay and suspect that I could be spending more using the "one card at a time" method. Though I very seldom see a set in the same "true" condition as these two just completed.

It is worthy of note that my cost on the 1966 was much lower at around the 500 card mark. The High # and SPs wiped me out.
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Old 11-05-2018, 09:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sfh24 View Post
My inclination is similar. I have tried to find similar sets on Ebay and suspect that I could be spending more using the "one card at a time" method. Though I very seldom see a set in the same "true" condition as these two just completed.

It is worthy of note that my cost on the 1966 was much lower at around the 500 card mark. The High # and SPs wiped me out.
I hear ya. Sometimes when collecting a set that has challenging high numbers you can get a deal on most or all of the low #s (outside of the big cards of course) by buying most of the set outside of the highs so that you have $ left to tackle the highs. Good stuff though. It is a fun hobby.

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Old 11-05-2018, 10:28 PM
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I've gone the 'big' starter lot route and found it to be the most fun. At least with the 50s through 1970 sets I've put together. I look for lots that contain 50 to 60% and the rest I pick up at my local hotel shows or online. I know it would be cheaper to just buy the set. I've done that with some sets from the 70s and 80s but I find that I never really enjoy flipping through the cards as much as I do with my "blood, sweat and tears-built" ones. I can tell you when, where and how I found the last cards I needed for those.
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Old 11-05-2018, 10:44 PM
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Ive always found it cheaper to buy the whole set especially with difficult high numbers or sp cards. I also find it more enjoyable to build the set card by Card and focus on grade or centering or whatever you are after.
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Old 11-06-2018, 07:59 AM
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I buy and bust sets. Best bet for a bargain set start are the large starter sets on eBay which are usually the leftovers from collection acquisitions and set breaks. You can get 70% or more of the set for a pittance then work the rest. I have a 1975 starter set of over 500 cards up right now on eBay at a dime a card from a recent collection purchase.
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Old 11-06-2018, 08:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commishbob View Post
I've gone the 'big' starter lot route and found it to be the most fun. At least with the 50s through 1970 sets I've put together. I look for lots that contain 50 to 60% and the rest I pick up at my local hotel shows or online. I know it would be cheaper to just buy the set. I've done that with some sets from the 70s and 80s but I find that I never really enjoy flipping through the cards as much as I do with my "blood, sweat and tears-built" ones. I can tell you when, where and how I found the last cards I needed for those.
You make a good point. I am intimately acquainted with every card in the sets I have compiled. I know the exact condition and flaws of every card.
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