My lifetime card collecting project is to have a complete Topps set run from 1951 to present. This is something that I am very serious about completing someday as it is very challenging, fun, and rewarding. I started a long time ago buying small vintage collections and over time I have slowly completed sets from 1957, 1959, 1964, 1965, and 1967 to present. Here is all that I left to complete my Topps set run:
As you can see, the cards I collect for 1951-1954 are all PSA graded with no qualifiers. My condition requirements for these years are lower grade simply because of price. I would love to be able to afford near mint sets from these years. The reason why I only collect PSA cards from these years is the fact that the holders provide a better eye appeal to the card than if they were not graded.
Here is what I am missing from 1955 to present...
My condition requirements for the sets 1955 to 1969 must be at least a strong EX or better. I would like for all of my cards from the 1950’s and 1960’s to be graded but that would be way too expensive. All of my sets from 1970 to present are near mint to mint. None of my cards from 1955 to present are graded although I have bought several graded cards over the years. When I buy cards that are $50 or more from these years, I buy them graded by Beckett or PSA and then I carefully crack the slabs and put the cards in my notebooks. The last card I bought for my 1967 Topps set was a Tom Seaver PSA 6.5 card. Some people would probably cringe at the idea of unslabbing cards that are nicely graded but this is my collection and this is how I choose to collect and store my sets.
I have been trying to find some good deals on the older cards from 1951 to 1954. I once won an auction for a 1954 Topps common graded PSA 3 for $2.50 delivered. Deals that great are very rare though. I usually follow these guidelines when buying from these years:
1951 Topps - $14 a common (2X for blue backs) at least PSA 3
1952 Topps - $12 a common at least PSA 2
1953 Topps - $10 a common at least PSA 2
1954 Topps - $8 a common at least PSA 3
Occasionally I will find someone offering a PSA set break from these years. This is the best opportunity to get a lot of cards at once at lower prices due to combined shipping. Another opportunity that I would like to pursue one day is to attend a National. I have heard that the National is a great place to make some deals because sellers do not have to pay eBay and Paypal fees. Once I get more than half of these vintage sets from 1951 to 1954, I will then start posting my want lists.
Do you have any lower graded PSA graded cards from 1951 to 1954 and want to sell or trade? If so, please let me know. Thanks!