UK Baseball Card Collectors… Listen Up!!

I was contacted a couple of days ago by a fellow card collector by the name of Stuart Brookes…

Stuart is a Twins fan and a Capricorn, and his interests include… (OK, I’ll stop there – I was just being a bit silly… About the Capricorn bit obviously, not about him being a Twins fan!! :))

He’s had the idea of starting up a network of collectors in the UK that can… Hold on! I’ll let the man himself explain from the email that he sent to me –

“As an avid long standing collector one thing that really dents my collecting capacity is postage costs. Maybe its something we have to live with as collectors of a sport played over the pond and being such a small market.

With limited suppliers such as the bay and check out my cards we end up paying a higher percentage for lower end cards. One idea that struck me was to find like minded collectors across the UK and set up a network where we could pool resources to purchase boxes from the US making it more affordable for average collectors.

With the bay, if someone was selling a mixed team lot for instance, if you knew a Cubs collector and a Twins collector you could split the lot and no one is bidding each other up.

I hope to have a website up and running in the near future but am happy to receive emails to get the ball rolling my email is stuart-brookes@sky.com

I hope to get a website set up pretty quickly and in the future hope to get a UK version of check out my cards, not for profit making just to help fill peoples collections.”

Personally I think that this is a great idea and, with a bit of work on all our parts, is something that could work in all our favour.

Now, I know that Rome wasn’t built in a day, and I know that readership of this particular blog is still pretty small… But if there are any other blog owners reading this then please try and get the word out about what Stuart is trying to achieve and everyone feel free contact him on the email address that he’s provided!!

Alternatively, if anyone else in the UK has any suggestions on how to make something like this work then please get in touch as Stuart and I would love to hear from you!!

Cool… Right, now I’m off to watch the end of Cabin In The Woods!!

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10 thoughts on “UK Baseball Card Collectors… Listen Up!!

  1. Great to hear from another UK based collector, even if he is a Twins fan :-). Just a thought, but does anyone think that it might be a good idea to set up a mailing list – say in Yahoo Groups – to allow us to contact each other on a regular basis? “The Wax Fantastic” is a great blog, but its not the ideal forum to share daily messages. If there is some interest down this line, I’d be happy to set it up. Contact me directly at glenncodere@yahoo.com

    On Stuart’s suggestions, there are a few problems to be overcome. First one is that it needs to be recognised that our single biggest issue in buying cards in bulk (or even just single high value cards) is not the postal cost – its tax, duty, and handling charges on items over a stated value. Its almost impossible to get past that problem, and that’s what really bumps up the cost of bringing in cards from the States (you can’t expect dealers/sellers to mis-declare the value of items for our convenience). The second problem is that Ebay frowns on bidding consortiums (groups of individuals who bid together or agree not to bid against each other) as in their eyes it “removes competition”. This is one of the reasons why they anonymised bidders identities a few years back. That’s not a completely insurmountable problem, but one that everyone needs to be aware of.

    I’m not trying to put a damper on things. I would love to find a method to give us better (cheaper!) access to cards, but we need to be aware that doing so off our own backs is not as easy as it may seem.

  2. I am all for starting up a network of like minded collectors in the UK and it’s a great idea to get together and buy cards, but it tends to be the tax (and sometimes postage costs) that makes them ridiculosly priced. Things like completing a set have become harder in recent times as COMC has upped their postage prices, so buying the cheap cards to complete a set, say a 25cent card can cost $3.00 to send.Going over ten cards even higher.
    There is a seller on ebayUK, who has a blaster of 2012 Archives priced at £24.99 plus £3.00 postage costs, however you can buy the same blaster for $18.99 (£12.00) plus $10.00 (£6.50) postage. If you don’t get hit by customs (which you shouldn’t as it is below a certain price) it works out cheaper to get the blaster sent from the US. Marginally but still cheaper.
    When you try to buy boxes from the US, that’s when it starts to get very expensive. As I have learnt from experience.
    There are, however some great boxes for sale on ebayUK, although they are from 1993,-1999 they are going for a very reasonable £15.00- £20.00.plus £6.95 postage (for 36packs) There is also a box of 1994 Fleer Flair selling for £49.99 plus $8.75 postage. I think the same seller has 1995 Finest and 1994 Leaf. So buying these boxes and splitting them may be a way to go. These cards may not suit everybodies collecting habits though. The older boxes don’t have the ‘HITS’ that collectors are looking for either.
    There is something about opening packs that I enjoy as well. That is why I tend to buy packs, blasters, boxes take the cards I need, for instance Red Sox, and give /trade away the rest.
    But as I said I am all for establishing a network of UK collectors to share the spoils and helping others to collect cards.

    • Hey John

      £24.99 for an Archives blaster?!?!?! That’s bloody ridiculous!! Who the hell listed it at that price…? Hold on a sec… That was me 😀

      Here’s the story behind the blaster… I purchased three blasters from Strictly Mint (boxes of 2012 A&G, Bowman and Archives) just to sell them on as packs. It was part of an initial experiment to see what sort of interest there was in single packs from recent products, just to establish if it was worth getting more over to save on postage with the hope of bringing the overall pack price down!

      The Bowman all sold out, as did half the A&G… but no-one touched the Archives packs 😦

      So I ended up putting the sealed blaster on for £24.99 to see if there were any impulse buyers out there…

      It’s actually down to £17.99 now (which is around the price that I originally picked it up for) so hopefully it should find it’s way into someone’s hands…

      I’d eventually love to bring boxes over here and sell them on at reduced prices for UK collectors, then using the funds from those boxes to buy up more and to keep the cycle going

      It’s like Glenn and yourself both mentioned though, it’s the extra costs that we have to pay to get the boxes here in the first place that end up being the real problem!

      Blasters are a nice, cheaper alternative, but when it comes to cracking boxes there’s nothing like a Hobby box!!

    • LOL 🙂

      Don’t worry about that, John!! I’m embarrassingly aware of the overinflated price of that particular box.

      I overpriced that blaster intentionally to make up for the loss I would have made on the A&G that didn’t sell. There were a few watchers but no buyers – and quite rightly at that price, hence reducing it to the current listing price.

      I might look at getting hold of a case of blasters when 2013 Topps comes out next year and seeing if they shift. Buying a case should help bring the overall price down per box and I like blasters as a decent way of getting hold of a few cards at a reasonable cost.

      And you make a really good point about higher prices over here on boxes in general. If you’re trying to turn any kind of profit on a box then once it’s purchased, shipping paid for and then customs charges/import tax added (along with any extra charges from the postal courier) then I guess the final sale price of the box will always end up being high (probably higher than most sellers would prefer to sell at I suspect).

      As an aside I’ve just broken open a blaster of 2011 Topps Update and have a few Red Sox if you’re interested. I’ve got around 20 other Sox cards tucked away for you if you’re interested…

    • Cool…

      Contact me directly with your address and I’ll send them all out to you. You may have some already but hopefully you’ll be able to fill some gaps!!!

      Alternatively, if you have any Justin Verlander cards lying around I’d happily trade them with you!!

  3. hey

    Im a new collector, started a month or so ago, been buying into breaks with some twitter friends and buying the odd card off ebay, id be interested in getting to know some fellow uk collectors and trading, sharing etc etc.. My email is hillsden69@hotmail.com and my twitter name is uk_mets_Fan

    Cheers

    Ash

    • Hi there Ash.

      Great to hear from you!!

      I guess you’ve come to the right place in terms of other collectors in the UK – that was the main reason for setting up the blog in the first place!!

      I’m active on Twitter as well so please feel free to click on the links on the right of the main page to follow me on Twitter and the button to follow the blog in general!

      I’m hoping to do a bit of a give away on 1st March that will be open to blog followers. I did one recently for Twitter followers and that seemed to go down quite well.

      If I could I’d also advise you to have a look at a Yahoo Group called ‘uk_cards’ that was set up by a fellow collector up in Glasgow. Here’s the link…

      http://uk.groups.yahoo.com/group/uk_cards/

      Great to have you on board and keep reading!!

      I post pretty regularly, usually every couple of days, and if thwere’s anything you’d like me to cover then let me know!!

      I’ll email this to you as well just in case you don’t pick up this reply!

      Cheers, Andy

      • Ash…….Glenn from Glasgow here. Get on over to the UK_cards Yahoo Group and I’ll get you signed up straight away. Always good to welcome new collectors to the fray!

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