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  #1  
Old 06-03-2013, 05:40 PM
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Dave.Horn.ish
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Default 1951 Topps Red Backs Oddity

Curious what everyone thinks about this pair I just picked up; first I have ever seen. The #7 #12 pairing is correct (the cards are separated) and while I have a theory on these, I am interested in unvarnished opinions:



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  #2  
Old 06-03-2013, 06:09 PM
sflayank sflayank is offline
larry s
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Default 51

nice pick up
i guess they printed a wrong back sheet
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  #3  
Old 06-03-2013, 07:03 PM
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That is the back of a 1951 Topps Team card, either someone accidentally mixed them up at the printing factory or it was a test run not intended to be distributed like the 1979 Topps cards with 1978 Topps backs.
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Last edited by Cliff Bowman; 06-03-2013 at 07:13 PM. Reason: Addition
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  #4  
Old 06-03-2013, 09:22 PM
SMPEP SMPEP is offline
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Default Makes sense

Given these were both printed in 1951 by Topps, this seems like a case of a wrong/front back being printed on teh same sheet. In theory, this means there should be additional ones of these floating around.

Very good find!

Cheers,
Patrick
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  #5  
Old 06-03-2013, 11:03 PM
Volod Volod is offline
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Great find, Dave, but I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for more to surface. I've been collecting the '51 issues since 1983 and have never seen a misprinted panel like yours. I guess you never know when someone might open an old desk drawer, though.
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  #6  
Old 06-04-2013, 11:21 AM
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Love the print freaks!
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  #7  
Old 06-04-2013, 02:48 PM
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Default Oddity

Over here in Ireland they think this is a great pick up Dave
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  #8  
Old 06-04-2013, 05:43 PM
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Dave.Horn.ish
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Al, sounds like I have the support of the entire country-huzzah!

I suspect the back was runoff as a color test after the team card run (the cards were marketed together in 1951 as Baseball Candy). Following the test I then have to think either:

a) a few sheets were added to the top and bottom of each pallet of uncut sheets to protect the sheets to be cut for retail. At some point at least one sheet got mixed in with the production sheets and was diecut and perforated.
Or

b) it's an early production proof checking for color and was never mixed with retail product.

Either way I suspect at least one full sheet or a substantial partial must have been printed.

Have to say I am happy I hit the BIN...
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  #9  
Old 06-05-2013, 05:47 PM
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So now I am thinking it's possible the Red Backs, Connie Macks and Team cards (the latter two can be demonstrated to have cohabited on the same sheet) could all have been on the same sheet. Instead of this being a color test, maybe the sheet was upside down instead.

I just blogged on all of this, link is here.
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  #10  
Old 06-06-2013, 12:50 AM
Spike Spike is offline
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Default Red Backs + 11 Connie Mack + 9 Teams on one sheet?

Great find, Dave. Just posted a blog comment hypothesizing this sheet layout for the "red ink" sets.

Red Backs (unknown number of 20-card vertical rows) at "left" followed by 11 Connie Mack + 9 Teams (in 10-card vertical rows)

Topps might've never intended to cover more Teams than needed to fill the sheet, given their focus on Red Backs + Connie Mack as a "unit." It also means including Ty Cobb in the Connie Mack set would've taken away a Teams card to stay at an even 20 total cards (2 side-by-side rows).

With that layout, reversing a sheet between front and back printing yields the Red Back front / Teams back you snagged. It also implies Teams would've been on the far right edge, with your 7-12 Red Backs panel on the far left before being swapped. A common sheet could also explain why Connie Mack cards with rounded corners might exist.

Sometime after the first two printings, probably after Red Backs proved a hit and the "1950" Teams cards didn't solve the legal problems with Bowman, Connie Mack and the Teams were printed on separate tan stock sheets, explaining why no Red Backs appear on tan. (You already posted a mis-cut showing Connie Macks and Teams side-by-side on the same sheet, which would happen for all 3 printings.)

What do you think, does this layout hold water?
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  #11  
Old 06-06-2013, 05:57 AM
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I responded to Matt over at the blog and he could be on to something:

"Comparing to Look n See, which is the nearest set in time with these dimensions, suggests a possible print array of 11 x 11 for 121 cards the size of a single Red Back. If you take 20 possible Teams and Connie Macks, that takes 40 slots and we add 52 to get to 92, so some would be double printed so there is room."

Intriguingly, Scoop, issued after Look n See, may have been produced in a 13 x 12 array (156 cards), which if you double print all the Red Backs (104 slots) and single print the Connie Macks and Teams (40) and add it all up, you get to 144 with 12 slots left over, so maybe a half dozen Red Back panels were triple prints.

I have no data on double prints in the Red Backs but I know there are some thoughts out there on how the short prints work in the Connie Macks and Teams. The cards were die cut (except Teams), with Red Backs being rounded on the corners and Connie Macks scored to allow the punchout of the player to work. That would probably play into how the sheets were arranged as those are two different processes.

Blue Backs and Major League All Stars could also have been produced on the same sheet then but without the Teams, which do not come with blue reverses.

Last edited by toppcat; 06-06-2013 at 05:58 AM.
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  #12  
Old 06-07-2013, 11:38 AM
steve B steve B is offline
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The teams were die cut as well. This pic I borrowed from Ebay shows the tabs at left and right where the gaps in the die cutting knife were. (Probably a third one too, at top left)

Steve B

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  #13  
Old 06-07-2013, 12:46 PM
Spike Spike is offline
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Good catch, those die-cut remnants could mean that Teams (both 1950 or undated) came on the same sheets as Connie Mack All-Stars for all printings, or at least used the same printer and sheet cutter. All of the high-grade Connie Macks I've seen at auction have the matching stubs.

Last edited by Spike; 06-07-2013 at 12:49 PM.
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  #14  
Old 06-12-2013, 05:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steve B View Post
The teams were die cut as well. This pic I borrowed from Ebay shows the tabs at left and right where the gaps in the die cutting knife were. (Probably a third one too, at top left)

Steve B

Yes, indeed-I was a bit imprecise but the Teams do indeed have some "nubs". There are more clues out there I bet.
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  #15  
Old 06-13-2013, 06:21 AM
Volod Volod is offline
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Default 51 Topps sheets

Quote:
Originally Posted by toppcat View Post
"Comparing to Look n See, which is the nearest set in time with these dimensions, suggests a possible print array of 11 x 11 for 121 cards the size of a single Red Back. If you take 20 possible Teams and Connie Macks, that takes 40 slots and we add 52 to get to 92, so some would be double printed so there is room."

Intriguingly, Scoop, issued after Look n See, may have been produced in a 13 x 12 array (156 cards), which if you double print all the Red Backs (104 slots) and single print the Connie Macks and Teams (40) and add it all up, you get to 144 with 12 slots left over, so maybe a half dozen Red Back panels were triple prints.

I have no data on double prints in the Red Backs but I know there are some thoughts out there on how the short prints work in the Connie Macks and Teams. The cards were die cut (except Teams), with Red Backs being rounded on the corners and Connie Macks scored to allow the punchout of the player to work. That would probably play into how the sheets were arranged as those are two different processes.

Blue Backs and Major League All Stars could also have been produced on the same sheet then but without the Teams, which do not come with blue reverses.
Dave - Any use of math in an explanation kind of disorients me, as a dysarithmetic, but I'm trying to follow your analysis of possible sheet layouts.
Are you suggesting that the 51 Topps sheets were necessarily either 11x11" or 13x12"? I'm wondering how the blue-ink sheets might have been arranged. Since you would have a 52-count series of Bluebacks on a sheet with - what?- either 11 Major League All-Stars, or 8 of those, depending on whether or not the three Philly scarcities were included, how would that comport with your thoughts on the sheet dimensions?
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  #16  
Old 06-13-2013, 05:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Volod View Post
Dave - Any use of math in an explanation kind of disorients me, as a dysarithmetic, but I'm trying to follow your analysis of possible sheet layouts.
Are you suggesting that the 51 Topps sheets were necessarily either 11x11" or 13x12"? I'm wondering how the blue-ink sheets might have been arranged. Since you would have a 52-count series of Bluebacks on a sheet with - what?- either 11 Major League All-Stars, or 8 of those, depending on whether or not the three Philly scarcities were included, how would that comport with your thoughts on the sheet dimensions?
Those two non sports sets are the of the same dimensions as the Red and Blue Backs (and of course half a Team or All Star card) and those are known sheet configurations for each (although neither non sport set was die cut. An 11 x 11 sheet is a little problematic though, isn't it as there would be at least one orphaned Red Back pair I think. Still the larger cards could have been printed on different sheets than the Red and Blue Backs.

There is some evidence the three short printed MLAS cards were printed separately but it's not conclusive. The Blues and the MLAS would have been printed at the same time I think.
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