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Go Back   Net54baseball.com Forums > Net54baseball Postwar Sportscard Forums > Postwar Baseball Cards Forum (Pre-1980)

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  #1  
Old 02-22-2021, 06:21 PM
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Default Anyone else feeling raw is their only option these days?

Hi all, I know there’s been a lot of concern about the skyrocketing vintage market and while sure it’s a double edge that my personal collection has more value to it I feel like I’ve lost most of fun I was having the last few years building it and am priced out of what I liked to collect. I know many people here prefer raw to graded anyway but for me I was only buying graded cards because of the security to me that 1) they were authentic and 2) that at least there is some quantifiable determination of the grade of the card that is just too hard for me to do with raw online pictures. Problem is I typically liked to spend about $100-200 per card which 8 months ago would be able to get me mid to sometimes higher grade cards even of Aaron, Mays, etc.

Now it seems all I can afford is 2-3 grade range which usually means much less visually appealing cards. I can’t increase my budget so for that same price point find myself having to “gamble” on raw cards with the hope I can have them graded myself and they’ll still land mid tier. Just worries me more the better the cards look the more chance they’re trimmed or fakes.

Anyone else feel like they’re in this same boat?
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  #2  
Old 02-22-2021, 06:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mferronibc View Post
Hi all, I know there’s been a lot of concern about the skyrocketing vintage market and while sure it’s a double edge that my personal collection has more value to it I feel like I’ve lost most of fun I was having the last few years building it and am priced out of what I liked to collect. I know many people here prefer raw to graded anyway but for me I was only buying graded cards because of the security to me that 1) they were authentic and 2) that at least there is some quantifiable determination of the grade of the card that is just too hard for me to do with raw online pictures. Problem is I typically liked to spend about $100-200 per card which 8 months ago would be able to get me mid to sometimes higher grade cards even of Aaron, Mays, etc.

Now it seems all I can afford is 2-3 grade range which usually means much less visually appealing cards. I can’t increase my budget so for that same price point find myself having to “gamble” on raw cards with the hope I can have them graded myself and they’ll still land mid tier. Just worries me more the better the cards look the more chance they’re trimmed or fakes.

Anyone else feel like they’re in this same boat?
In general, I like to buy Raw when I can. As long as I know where it's coming from. I've purchased Raw cards on here on various occasions, a good portion of my PC is Raw.

I've dipped into buying cards that are Slabbed Altered as well. It gives you more options at a cheaper price point. I'm eventually cacking them anyway, and it's for my PC, as long as I know it's real and presents nicely, I'm happy with it. Not exactly a common thought process though.
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  #3  
Old 02-22-2021, 06:38 PM
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Or you can sell your higher grade one replace with lower grade and use that extra money for new card
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  #4  
Old 02-22-2021, 06:57 PM
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I bought a few ungraded Willie Mays cards off COMC for precisely the reasons you spelled out. And, of course, the day after I bought them the sellers of said cards raised their prices hugely on their other (same year) Mays cards, which were in lesser shape. Seller's remorse, I guess. Up, up and away it goes...
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  #5  
Old 02-22-2021, 08:58 PM
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Default Buy from reputable sellers!

I sell mostly raw cards. They are largely from original owner collections. I guarantee they are unaltered. There are a number of other reputable vintage dealers that offer similar assurances. As I believe someone already posted, know who you are buying from - it may somewhat limit your choices, but at least you can buy without worrying about alerations.
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  #6  
Old 02-22-2021, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mferronibc View Post
Hi all, I know there’s been a lot of concern about the skyrocketing vintage market and while sure it’s a double edge that my personal collection has more value to it I feel like I’ve lost most of fun I was having the last few years building it and am priced out of what I liked to collect. I know many people here prefer raw to graded anyway but for me I was only buying graded cards because of the security to me that 1) they were authentic and 2) that at least there is some quantifiable determination of the grade of the card that is just too hard for me to do with raw online pictures. Problem is I typically liked to spend about $100-200 per card which 8 months ago would be able to get me mid to sometimes higher grade cards even of Aaron, Mays, etc.



Now it seems all I can afford is 2-3 grade range which usually means much less visually appealing cards. I can’t increase my budget so for that same price point find myself having to “gamble” on raw cards with the hope I can have them graded myself and they’ll still land mid tier. Just worries me more the better the cards look the more chance they’re trimmed or fakes.



Anyone else feel like they’re in this same boat?
No, you are not alone--not by a long shot. To give yourself greater peace of mind, spend a little money on a loupe and a blacklight. These tools can help you detect fakes and altered cards. And, as others have said, know the sellers from whom you are buying. I look for lenient return policies as well. Never really have to use them, but I won't buy ungraded cards without a seller being willing to stand behind what he sells.

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  #7  
Old 02-22-2021, 09:37 PM
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Default Yes

Yes, the gap between raw and graded has grown much too wide and so I've found myself buying raw, some of which I will sub myself. It's not just you! I feel like the graded price is the "marked up" price and I have enough knowledge and skills that I don't need to pay that premium. A few exceptions are higher dollar cards that I don't like that risk (mostly) and so those types of cards I'm not really buying at this time....I bought a simple lighted hand-held magnifier from Amazon which assists me in catching flaws for most raw cards that come across my desk. Since I already know the grading standards well, I feel like I can grade my own cards with accuracy, and don't need to pay a TPG to do this for me.
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  #8  
Old 02-22-2021, 10:35 PM
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I picked this up raw because of the increase in price of graded examples.
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  #9  
Old 02-23-2021, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by GasHouseGang View Post
I picked this up raw because of the increase in price of graded examples.
That is a beautiful card with the jagged edges one would expect to see from a card of that era.

Congrats
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  #10  
Old 02-23-2021, 08:39 PM
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Default Lower Grade Raw

I've always purchased lower grade raw. I just never had interest in spending the extra money to buy graded.
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  #11  
Old 02-24-2021, 12:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whitehse View Post
That is a beautiful card with the jagged edges one would expect to see from a card of that era.

Congrats
Thanks Andrew. Those jagged edges are what appealed to me as well.
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  #12  
Old 02-24-2021, 10:13 AM
olecow olecow is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GasHouseGang View Post
I picked this up raw because of the increase in price of graded examples.

Beautiful card! I love the rough cut on it.
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  #13  
Old 02-24-2021, 02:06 PM
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I've moved more to raw cards in the last three years, initially because I like albums best. Now, with the price jacks, I am selling slabbed cards I can replace with comparable raw ones for far less money. Not just cheapos either, here are two recent raw purchases I am very pleased with:


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  #14  
Old 02-23-2021, 01:55 AM
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I still prefer raw rather than slabbed. I never made the jump, and then the scandals broke and I just continued buying free range cardboard. Sometimes I see cards graded of an average Joe, and I wonder how in the world they are worth $100 or more than an ungraded copy. That's a premium I'm not willing to pay.

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  #15  
Old 02-23-2021, 07:35 AM
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I've been doing the same over the past six months. Just sent a large order (for me) to PSA with a lot of vintage so we'll see how I did. I've got a '52 Minoso, '58 Mantle, and '60 Yaz RC that I'm hoping will do well. The rest of it will come in expectedly low.
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  #16  
Old 02-23-2021, 07:52 AM
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Cards in their natural state has been my preference since 1957, when it was mostly the only option
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  #17  
Old 02-23-2021, 08:32 AM
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I’ve always like the raw way just like ODB
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  #18  
Old 02-23-2021, 08:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ALR-bishop View Post
Cards in their natural state has been my preference since 1957, when it was mostly the only option
I love the "mostly" qualifier. The late '50s were the era of SPUTNIK GRADING and the ilk.
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  #19  
Old 02-23-2021, 12:19 PM
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I love the "mostly" qualifier. The late '50s were the era of SPUTNIK GRADING and the ilk.
I was worried there may have been some early slabs from the Christmas Rack Pack folks that I had missed
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  #20  
Old 02-23-2021, 08:39 AM
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Cards in their natural state has been my preference since 1957, when it was mostly the only option
I understand Al, but how much is too much? Is the natural habitat for a card even a soft sleeve and top loader or is plastic plastic? Stack with a rubber band to be truly as intended? Obviously I'm being facetious, I get that to many slabs are chunky and take away from the visible appeal of the card if you're too focused on the label. For me though, as I build my collection it is important to understand and track the value and something to equitably pass on to my kids without too much uncertainty. I have never sold a card in my life and don't plan to but if they choose to do that after I'm gone at least I can know they'll be less likely to get taken advantage of. Different strokes.
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  #21  
Old 02-23-2021, 08:53 AM
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I buy some graded stuff but I mostly prefer cardboard tartare for my PC.
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  #22  
Old 02-23-2021, 08:34 AM
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Originally Posted by scmavl View Post
I've been doing the same over the past six months. Just sent a large order (for me) to PSA with a lot of vintage so we'll see how I did. I've got a '52 Minoso, '58 Mantle, and '60 Yaz RC that I'm hoping will do well. The rest of it will come in expectedly low.
Problem is seems like more and more of raw now are expecting to get comparable prices to what they perceive (or at least advertise) the card would grade without taking on any of the risk that it likely won't or the cost ($65)/time (6-9 months) to actually grade it. Seller's market for sure.
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  #23  
Old 02-23-2021, 09:31 AM
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Originally Posted by mferronibc View Post
Problem is seems like more and more of raw now are expecting to get comparable prices to what they perceive (or at least advertise) the card would grade without taking on any of the risk that it likely won't or the cost ($65)/time (6-9 months) to actually grade it. Seller's market for sure.
Agreed. I tend to look for poorly photographed cards on ebay, as lots of people scroll right by a lackluster thumbnail. I've gotten some really good deals that way. Same with cards sold as a lot instead of individually.
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Old 02-23-2021, 09:37 AM
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Agreed. I tend to look for poorly photographed cards on ebay, as lots of people scroll right by a lackluster thumbnail. I've gotten some really good deals that way. Same with cards sold as a lot instead of individually.
Great tips. I've actually been trying to focus on sellers that don't have a lot of feedback. This goes against my typical screening but if we're talking <$50 cards I feel like more likely to truly be someone that rediscovered their collection and just looking to cash in as opposed to a true dealer who has already made the "it's not worth grading" calculation and decided to sell raw.
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Old 02-23-2021, 07:02 PM
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Originally Posted by todeen View Post
I still prefer raw rather than slabbed. I never made the jump, and then the scandals broke and I just continued buying free range cardboard. Sometimes I see cards graded of an average Joe, and I wonder how in the world they are worth $100 or more than an ungraded copy. That's a premium I'm not willing to pay.

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Free range cardboard! That's the funniest thing I've seen on this site in a very long time! I knew I wasn't alone from comments I've seen in other threads and now in this thread. I've built a pretty nice collection over the years, but this is just fun for me. I don't have retirement riding on this, nor do I think of my collection as part of my portfolio. Yes, I do have some slabs in my collection, but I much prefer to touch and smell collector grade cards. The cards I've picked up lately aren't high grade or designed to impress anyone else. They are just decent copies I found at decent prices, and I truly enjoy owning them. If you like high grade, then look away!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 1955 Bowman Willie Mays.jpg (77.3 KB, 197 views)
File Type: jpg 1955 Topps Willie Mays.jpg (41.4 KB, 188 views)
File Type: jpg 1956 Topps Henry Aaron.jpg (75.2 KB, 195 views)
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  #26  
Old 02-23-2021, 11:42 PM
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Originally Posted by vintagebaseballcardguy View Post
Free range cardboard! That's the funniest thing I've seen on this site in a very long time! I knew I wasn't alone from comments I've seen in other threads and now in this thread. I've built a pretty nice collection over the years, but this is just fun for me. I don't have retirement riding on this, nor do I think of my collection as part of my portfolio. Yes, I do have some slabs in my collection, but I much prefer to touch and smell collector grade cards. The cards I've picked up lately aren't high grade or designed to impress anyone else. They are just decent copies I found at decent prices, and I truly enjoy owning them. If you like high grade, then look away!
Those are beauties!

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  #27  
Old 02-24-2021, 04:04 AM
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Those are beauties!

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Thanks very much!

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  #28  
Old 02-24-2021, 05:59 AM
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I much prefer to touch and smell of collector grade cards.
Totally agree. There is nothing like the smell of mildew on old cardboard.
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  #29  
Old 02-24-2021, 06:34 AM
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Totally agree. There is nothing like the smell of mildew on old cardboard.
Yes, sir. I can also see that I can't type. I meant to say the touch and smell. Oh well, you got my meaning.

There are, of course, many ways to enjoy this hobby, and I don't pretend that my way is the only way. I am now 47 (yikes!) and find myself returning to the type of collecting I enjoyed as a younger man in his very early 20s, perhaps late teens. In many instances, I am just happy to own a decent example of a card. Additionally, I have come to view my cards as ephemera much as I do the photos and programs that I own. I particularly enjoy collecting relics of the 50s, and cards happen to be a big part of thst---though not the only part. As the baseball "hobby" has progressed, collectors have accepted some standards to be applied to cards and their value that aren't present with other pieces of ephemera.

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  #30  
Old 02-24-2021, 08:08 AM
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Mike, I think you'd be surprised how much you could get for that Koufax. Even though the corners may not be perfect, you just don't find many examples so well centered. Nice spread you've got there!
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