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  1. #1




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    Is set collecting worth the hassle?

    Hi everyone.

    I know there is a section on SCF dedicated to this, but I figured this would be a better place to put this thread. @scottkoz20 or mods, if you think it should go somewhere else, please let me know.

    It's just a question, really...is set collecting worth the hassle? I'm not talking master sets, just base cards and rookies - Upper Deck 1 & 2 mainly.

    I am mainly a rookie card collector but I have three or four complete Upper Deck sets from 1990-91 to 1993-94 and a few incomplete sets (1982-83 O-Pee-Chee and 1988-89 O-Pee-Chee I think, I have to check that, and which I need from each set). I've been thinking of building sets but I'm thinking that the shipping cost might be prohibitive (especially if you have, say, a complete base set to offer).

    There is another issue, and that is that I am very particular on what condition I will accept. I would be looking for cards/sets in nearmint-mint condition or better. Nothing less than that.

    Thoughts?
    Tony

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  2. #2
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    well - I think it depends on the collector.

    There are plenty of folks in all sports that do like the chase of building sets. Now if the question has to do with the Set Building forum specifically, this is something that I have privately discussed with the staff about retiring as well as other members have asked about the need for this forum (especially in the trading area there is a Prefix for Set Building - makes it redundant)

    However, there is a need for a Set Builders area - the location I think is up for discussion going forward.


    As far as the condition of the cards, the expectation is that the cards are NR-Mint/Mint - anything else needs to be disclosed.

    @RGM81 - I think this is something that we need to discuss with the Dan's for the other sports.

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  3. #3
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    I think this is a good topic for hobby discussion.

    It's never a hassle if you have a passion for collecting what you like. You could probably knock off the base in one go if you wait after a release and talk to someone who broke a case. They'd probably be happy for you to take the base from them and the shipping shouldn't be too crazy.

    Unless a batch of base were seriously messed up, all base cards coming fresh out of a pack should in solid condition and be up to those standards.

    As for the Young Guns, there may be a few that you'll need to piece out and buy indivually, but again, if you start fresh after a release, or wait until they all and up on COMC, you should be able to get the majority of them in a bulk buy and save on shipping costs.

    Other sets may be harder to complete due to price or rarity, but a simple S1/S2 Base/Young Guns set is very doable and good on cost because there is a ton of it readily availible.

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    What is your end goal?

    Because if you are making sets that are popular and you are trying to turn a profit on case breaking it is vital to make sets and sell them. Is it worth the time to hand collect a set and hold on to it for a decade? No and it was never really worth it even to do that. It was called collecting and hobby and was fun for some people as it gave them something to do.

    The biggest problem with sets now is that the cost of shipping continues to climb that it isn't worth it to ship most sets especially between Canada and the US. Before it didn't cost much but now the shipping cost usually costs more than what you can win a set for on eBay. If you can sell them on craigslist or locally at flea markets you can usually do much better though.

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  5. #5




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    What is your end goal?

    Because if you are making sets that are popular and you are trying to turn a profit on case breaking it is vital to make sets and sell them. Is it worth the time to hand collect a set and hold on to it for a decade? No and it was never really worth it even to do that. It was called collecting and hobby and was fun for some people as it gave them something to do.

    The biggest problem with sets now is that the cost of shipping continues to climb that it isn't worth it to ship most sets especially between Canada and the US. Before it didn't cost much but now the shipping cost usually costs more than what you can win a set for on eBay. If you can sell them on craigslist or locally at flea markets you can usually do much better though.

    I don't open cases/boxes. I am not in this hobby for profit. This is only my personal opinion but honestly, people who are in this for profit are much better off contacting a financial adviser and investing in something worthwhile. This is purely a hobby that helps occupy my free time (and I have lots of that, unfortunately). It's just a matter of me having a few sets already and wondering if I should build more.

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  6. #6




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    Building sets is for fun. A complete set is most of the times worth less than each card individually, and shipping adds up. But, after breaking a few boxes from a collection, I enjoy being able to complete at least one base set. Also, some sets catch my eyes so much that I have to build them. But, I'm more and more of a singles picker. I have so many sets stacked here, at some point it doesn't have much sense to keep adding more.

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  7. #7




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    Well, I probably have several complete UD sets from 2015-16 to the present, I just haven't put them together yet.... I know I have all they key cards in every set... Same thing with UD 1990-1995..

    The only modern sets I would consider trying to complete would be Upper Deck SP Game Used base sets, other than that my primary focus has been on vintage cards lately...

    I mean I have pretty much every key card to every set from 1969 to the present, so if I wanted to make sets from those years I would just have to find the commons, semi-stars or "lesser cards" in the set.

    I will say tho that I am trying to build the following sets:

    1968-69
    1969-70
    1970- 71
    1971-72
    1972-73

    Both Topps & OPC

    I mean I have most of the "major" cards from these sets (Orr, Howe, Hull, Esposito(s), Sawchuk, Dryden, Plante etc) in both Topps and OPC, so I could make sets pretty easily by buying large lots from those years on ebay....

    I will say tho, I do have a fondness for 71-72 and 72-73 - both Topps and OPC... I'm probably pretty close to (several) 72-73 Topps sets tho, I have all the major stars in duplicate, and I have around 600 commons, semi-stars and Hall of Famers - you know, stuff worth under 15 bucks on top of the sets main cards ... I have 3-10 each of just about every card in the Topps set, I think I'm only a handful away..... But I would love to put together a 72-73 OPC set because obviously it's bigger and it includes the WHA cards, and quite bit more stars than the Topps set.

    The real question when it comes to set building is do you plan to look at the sets often?? I mean, I do have 81-82, 84-85 and 1989-90 Topps sets in binders, and I occasionally pull them out and look though them... It's fun to do from time to time... I also have a 1991-92 Pro Set Platinum S1 & 2 set in a binder, it's not a very valuable set at all but the set is loaded with HOF'ers, rookies and superstars of that era... I also have the insert sets #PH 1-16 that were randomly inserted into packs... Just for fun I broke a half a case of the stuff last summer, I got like 10 boxes of it for 25 bucks so why not? I got 10-15 of every card in the set, also I bought a lot of that stuff as a kid, so it was kind of nostalgic....Also Platinum was considered "premium" back in the day, I think they were like .75 cents to a buck per pack, lol...

    So yea, I like building sets, my only issue is that you come close to completing the set and there are always a few cards you really just don't care about because you have most of the set anyway - or at least the cards you want and like..

    I honestly just buy vintage cards in bulk and I get what I get and I'm usually happy....

    Besides, if you want a set you can generally get it for dirt cheap anyway.... At least modern base sets.. You can get UD sets all day minus the Young Guns for a few bucks... And shipping isn't that much..

    If you want vintage sets, they're not very big at all.... If I'm not mistaken Topps sets were only 132 cards and the OPC sets were only 264 cards... Or less than 400 throughout the 70's...

    Look, I had 20,000 cards shipped to me for $70.00.. So the right seller will work with you if you buy in bulk...

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    For a long time now I have felt that set collecting has been an exercise in worshiping common player cards. Take a modern UD I and UD II set. The base set comes in each box (almost). The 'fun' is in tracking down the Young Gungs, of which 5 or 6 are of good players (in each wave). That means that you are spending the time and money on 40 - 45 common young guns each set. NUTS.

    It is not like in the old days where a set was fun to collect and it had an end. I can see why Young Gun values are so high - UD I and UD II are really the only widely collected sets these days.




    That said, I am a crazy team collector (Red Deer Rebels).

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  9. #9




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    i think set are neat. thats what the cards were really made for in my mind. I've moved a bunch of base sets. its hard to move base, so i complete the set and move for $10 bucks or so plus shipping charges and away we go. ive sold probably around 30 various base sets. ive been wondering about setting up at a flea market lately but idk. i think moving base in sets is the way to go. as soon as i get all my base sets in order, ill move on to inserts.

    thats another thing, do people care about insert sets

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  10. #10
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    thats another thing, do people care about insert sets

    I think people still do care about inserts, but I think today's model puts base & inserts into the same "category" now. They are of course different types of cards, but inserts now are looked at by a lot of collectors as 'fluff' if it's not super low-numbered or have a crazy patch on it. Sad, because there are great inserts out there, but boxes are all about that 1 big hit now and they've been catering towards the Group Break model.

    That being said, I think there is still a market for inserts as we've seen the emergence of them with lower-end products like Tim Horton's & OPC Coast To Coast (master sets that are actually do-able, or at least not as scary to contemplate completing), but insert cards are just not what it used to be when looking across the product board.

    I still think inserts can be a great hit if they make them chasable & lower the amount of game-used cards and autos. Will manufacterers do that? Probably not, as they've seen the current model work for them and are already "in to deep" as they've had this type of offering in their products for many, many years now. Hard to scale back that much in all their products when the stuff sells and collectors have been used to a particular product model.

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    Last edited by creasecollector; Yesterday at 05:18 PM.

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