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  #1  
Old 05-21-2007, 06:47 PM
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Posted By: Robert Reiss

I'm sure this has been discussed before, but I'm relatively new to the board so I'll ask anyway. What is the best way to crack open a slab. In particular, an SGC slab, but any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Bob.

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  #2  
Old 05-21-2007, 06:56 PM
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Posted By: Mark T

This forum has a search bar, type in cracking slabs or crack open slabs and it should search for what you are looking for.

By the way a flat head screw driver works good...

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  #3  
Old 05-21-2007, 08:14 PM
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Posted By: Eric Brehm

I have only cracked open a few, but here is the method I have used, without causing injury to either myself or the card:

(1) Break off a corner of the slab with a pair of pliers. Some plastic shards may fly off when you do this, so wearing eye protection is a wise precaution.

(2) You can now insert a screwdriver a short distance into the slab interior and work it around the outside edge until the top and bottom halves separate. Be very careful not to jab the screwdriver into the card.

Also see this article:

http://www.seanet.com/~brucemo/card_articles/deslab.htm

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  #4  
Old 05-21-2007, 08:29 PM
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Posted By: James Gallo

The best way to open a becket or SGC holder is to take a large flat head screw driver and place it at the top of the car buy the flip. Hit the screwdriver a couple of times with the hammer hard and you will crack the case down the middle. You might go through the flip.

With PSA just use a knife to get in a corner, they split pretty easy once you are in.

Hope that helps.

James

Looking for 1915 Cracker Jacks and 1909-11 American Caramel E90-1.

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  #5  
Old 05-21-2007, 08:42 PM
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Posted By: T206Collector

...or break anything with pliers. It is very easy -- just use a flat-headed screwdriver. Put it into the crack at one corner and twist 90 degrees. Repeat at each corner. And then work your way around the crack along each edge. You will have a nice, clean broken seal and then can separate the sides carefully and cleanly.

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  #6  
Old 05-21-2007, 10:22 PM
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Posted By: Frank Wakefield

I've tried the screwdriver wedging it in there... I suggest you don't try that. There's a chance that the card gets pinched or bent on the way out, if the screwdriver slips.

I used to use a hack saw... that takes time, and a vice helps.


Best way is screwdriver and hammer, but no wedging the card out. Use the screwdriver as a chisel, work your way around the outer edges. You don't have to bust all the way through... as you work your way around the top will separate enough to allow you to lift it out of the way, and you can pick up the card. With this method there's no tension between the halves as in the twisting screwdriver method... that tension could lead to problems.

I save the little slips. Didn't used to, but now do. Lord only knows what I'll do with them one day... maybe sell 'em on eBay.


Use patience...

Frank.

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  #7  
Old 05-22-2007, 06:52 AM
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Posted By: T206Collector

"With this method there's no tension between the halves as in the twisting screwdriver method."

I have done the hammer/chisel method and it is messy. I have no idea what tension between the halves is created when twisting the screwdriver in the method I recommend. You are simply breaking the seal around the whole outer edge, at which point you can easily lift the top plate off of the bottom plate. And it is clean and quick.

This is for SGC, however. For Beckett you need to do the hammer thing, and for PSA the hammer thing may be necessary as well. Even if you use the hammer thing on the SGC holder, you'll likely be fine, but it seems to me to be more work/effort than necessary.

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  #8  
Old 05-22-2007, 07:41 AM
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Posted By: brian

i use a pair of tin snips and cut across the top where the label is, exploding the plastic. it flies everywhere so its best to hold the slab inside a trash can while you are cutting across. after that you just pull the slab apart at the top.

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  #9  
Old 05-22-2007, 12:40 PM
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Posted By: Mike Snyder

I have my best success with a bandsaw...

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  #10  
Old 05-22-2007, 12:48 PM
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Posted By: Al C.risafulli

Gents, so violent and barbaric.

It's all about the dremel tool. Carve about halfway through, just below the flip, all the way across the top of the slab. Then stick a flathead screwdriver into the notch and pry slightly upward; the face of the slab will pop right off. Takes about ten seconds, is not messy, and is much more elegant and civilized.



-Al

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  #11  
Old 05-22-2007, 01:18 PM
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Posted By: Glyn Parson

Just clip off a corner, I used a bolt cutter, stick a flat head screwdriver in the opening turn the screwdriver holder will pop open. I have broken out probably close to a thousand cards in my life and have damaged zero using this method but have damaged cards with some of the above reccomendations.

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  #12  
Old 05-22-2007, 02:24 PM
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Posted By: Jason L

cut through middle of slab and card
remove both card halves and tape back together.
works every time!

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  #13  
Old 05-24-2007, 07:22 PM
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Posted By: Robert Reiss

Thanks guys. I think I'll try Jason's! DEE DEE DEE!

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  #14  
Old 05-26-2007, 07:47 AM
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Posted By: Dave Hornish

I tried Leon's method on a BVG holder and got nowhere, although I may not have had a thin enough blade handy. I then placed a screwdriver above the card holder area, below and parallel to the flip and struck it with a hammer. Two blows up top and another on the bottom edge in the center with only the tiniest bit of the screwdriver blade on the holder and it split down the middle front and back and I was able to easily separate the halves. The baggie was more of a problem, since there is not a lot of room to work with but I got that too after some careful X-acto scalpeling.

SGC is the easiest I think. I just start at the bottom and gently slide a driver tip around the perimeter from there and it just comes apart. PSA requires a portion of the holder to be snipped in my experience before you can pry. No experience with GAI.

I am going to assemble a proper toolkit for cracking slabs I think, since I'm just using junky tools right now scattered around the house. Any recommendations on a good pair of snips for this?

I think this is a good kit for the hobby room:

Dremel w/cutting disc
Small hacksaw
Snips
Small set of standard screwdrivers, possibly a good jeweler's set
Rubber Mat
Towel
Small Hammer
Goggles
(1) Beer

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  #15  
Old 05-26-2007, 08:46 AM
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Posted By: Frank Wakefield

Dave,

Generally, I have found 1 beer to be insufficient for any task. A minimum of 2 beers are needed for even the smallest of tasks. And that does not take into consideration the "planning" beers.

Over the years I've learned a bit about beer. First, they sell 2 kinds of beer. No, not Bud or Miller. No, not cans or bottles... they sell hot beer and cold beer. NEVER buy cold beer. What do you do with cold beer, why you drink it. That's no good, might get you a DUI... Buy hot beer. What do you do with hot beer, take it home to the refrigerator. After a while you have cold beer. What do you do with cold beer, why you drink it! And you're at home.

I've seen posted here this ditty... I like to sit outside, drink beer, and hollar at people. If I do that at home I go to jail. So I go to baseball games and fit right it.


Finally, a wise doctor friend offered me a glass of wine a while back, and asked what kinds of wine I liked. I mumbled one or two and confessed that I usually had a beer. He looked at me seriously and told me I should start drinking wine, instead. I asked him why, expecting some serious, well reasoned answer. "Son," he said, "have you ever heard of anyone who had a wine belly?" I have not. But I still like my beer.

And Leon, it seems to me that beer is apropos just about everything...

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  #16  
Old 05-26-2007, 11:00 AM
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Posted By: Dave Hornish

I like both beer and wine actually but beer is what you drink when performing a "task" or watching the game or at a bbq. Wine is nice with dinner and then after.

I always buy cold beer but never drink and drive. That's a big no-no.

I am perfroming a number of tasks today and will eed some beer soon enough!

Happy Memorial Day all (and thanks to our veterans--including my dad, who was in the Navy in WW2 and will be 80 in July--and current soldiers!).

Dave

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  #17  
Old 06-27-2007, 01:30 PM
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Posted By: Ed McCollum

THIS IS IN REFERENCE TO THE FIFTH ANSWER UP ...


I've got a table saw with a fine tooth blade for cutting trim, and a compound miter saw with a similar blade. Wouldn't I just be able to cut along all sides of the card itself and have an upper and lower half left of the slab? Or am I missing something here? Would I just be better off to send the frosty white slab to the folks who have the nice black slab backgrounds and let them bust it out, or is that not what re-holdering is?
Sorry for such a basic question, but I'm getting ready to bust out my first card, and don't want to destroy the card in the process. I'm also impatient.

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  #18  
Old 06-27-2007, 03:14 PM
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Posted By: Bob

I'm with Eric and Glyn. The best way to open an SGC holder is to use a pliers on the top to create a crack or piece missing and then use a long flat handled screwdriver to pop it open. I've never (knock on wood) harmed a card this way and it is fairly quick and painless. (Watch out for the flying plastic shards though!

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