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  #301  
Old 05-14-2019, 02:53 PM
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The entire PWCC thing is a train wreck, but...

I'm really surprised at the level of forgiveness here, and "turning a blind eye" towards PSA for their role in this nightmare. These are ridiculous and obvious mistakes that they are continually making. Hard to believe these are all just unfortunate oversights.

Yet only a tiny percent of the conversation is directed towards them. I suppose it's because most people here own a slew of PSA graded cards, and want to maintain the integrity and value of their investments.

But I have seen countless discrepancies in their numerical grading, and wish the entire system could be revamped to a system like Corey S. suggested. It will obviously never happen now that we're so far down this road. But suffice to say many/most of the people on this board could do an equal or better job than these "professional graders".

And even with that, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I guess a majority of people need someone else to legitimize the worth of their collection.
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  #302  
Old 05-14-2019, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by perezfan View Post
The entire PWCC thing is a train wreck, but...

I'm really surprised at the level of forgiveness here, and "turning a blind eye" towards PSA for their role in this nightmare. These are ridiculous and obvious mistakes that they are continually making. Hard to believe these are all just unfortunate oversights.

Yet only a tiny percent of the conversation is directed towards them. I suppose it's because most people here own a slew of PSA graded cards, and want to maintain the integrity and value of their investments.

But I have seen countless discrepancies in their numerical grading, and wish the entire system could be revamped to a system like Corey S. suggested. It will obviously never happen now that we're so far down this road. But suffice to say many/most of the people on this board could do an equal or better job than these "professional graders".

And even with that, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I guess a majority of people need someone else to legitimize the worth of their collection.
Agreed! And today the stock hits a yearly high!
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  #303  
Old 05-14-2019, 03:13 PM
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Agreed! And today the stock hits a yearly high!
Think Jack Nicholson in A Few Good Men.

You want us slabbing cards.
You NEED us slabbing cards.
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  #304  
Old 05-14-2019, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by perezfan View Post
The entire PWCC thing is a train wreck, but...

I'm really surprised at the level of forgiveness here, and "turning a blind eye" towards PSA for their role in this nightmare. These are ridiculous and obvious mistakes that they are continually making. Hard to believe these are all just unfortunate oversights.

Yet only a tiny percent of the conversation is directed towards them. I suppose it's because most people here own a slew of PSA graded cards, and want to maintain the integrity and value of their investments.

But I have seen countless discrepancies in their numerical grading, and wish the entire system could be revamped to a system like Corey S. suggested. It will obviously never happen now that we're so far down this road. But suffice to say many/most of the people on this board could do an equal or better job than these "professional graders".

And even with that, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I guess a majority of people need someone else to legitimize the worth of their collection.
I posted a few hours ago my thoughts about PSA in this thread (post 84) as I have posted in the past as well. I agree with you 100% with your bold. Totally unacceptable, especially year after year.
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  #305  
Old 05-14-2019, 03:44 PM
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Yeah.... that was a great post!

And just for the record, Jack Nicholson was finally brought down in that classic film.
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  #306  
Old 05-14-2019, 03:53 PM
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Well if you read the stockholders info, their warranty claims have exploded in the last two years, so maybe they'll start investing refund money in avoiding refunds? (Meaning better grading)
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  #307  
Old 05-15-2019, 07:14 AM
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Altered cards are like HPV.
  • They are pervasive.
  • Many people have them but don't know they do.
  • And the people that do have them, and know they have them, don't want to admit they have them.
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  #308  
Old 05-15-2019, 12:53 PM
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Before they come to auction I think down the road the very expensive cards will be more closely and seriously examined for alterations, likely by a new service, and the provenance of high end cards will be taken more seriously. Cetainly, for a $100,000, or even $40,000 card, this would be quite reasonable, and, perhaps some day, the norm.

Interestingly, with the T206 Honus Wagner sales, the provenance (history) is usually pretty prominent in the description.

I suspect things will change, at least for the extremely expensive cards.

Duly note that with art and artifacts, there are scientific devices (call them 'ultra advanced blacklights') that are used to test the molecular structure and can identify all the chemicals and compounds. They are so advanced that not only can they identify a real diamond, they can tell you, by the molecular tests, where in the world they originated.

I write for the SABR baseball card committee, and it could all start with a serious article on the topic at SABR.

Last edited by drcy; 05-15-2019 at 01:10 PM.
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  #309  
Old 05-15-2019, 01:53 PM
benjulmag benjulmag is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drcy View Post
Before they come to auction I think down the road the very expensive cards will be more closely and seriously examined for alterations, likely by a new service, and the provenance of high end cards will be taken more seriously. Cetainly, for a $100,000, or even $40,000 card, this would be quite reasonable, and, perhaps some day, the norm.

Interestingly, with the T206 Honus Wagner sales, the provenance (history) is usually pretty prominent in the description.

I suspect things will change, at least for the extremely expensive cards.........
I agree with this. Should this really come into play, it will be interesting to see how this plays out with recent six-figure acquisitions that have no provenance.

I suspect the last thing a seller of one of these recent no-provenance-come-out-of-nowhere cards would want is to do such an analysis for fear what it might reveal. If I was selling raw high-grade vintage cards worth big $$$ that I had reason to believe were not worked on, I would feel a strong incentive to undertake such an examination before or even instead of submitting the card to a TPG. I would then be in a position to credibly make the claim that my "slab" does in fact reveal all that was (or, from another perspective, was not) done to the card. If it was really high grade I likely would want it numerically graded by a recognized TPG, but presumably that grade would mean a lot more if accompanied by the report from my forensic analyst.

Should this ever become the norm to sell raw and/or no-provenance high grade vintage cards (and also condition-rarity post war cards), potentially it could have major implications for TPGs and the hobby, given my belief that most of these cards that have no provenace have been worked on. How much of this can/will happen depends I suppose on how much alteration can be conclusively exposed by forensic analysis.

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  #310  
Old 05-15-2019, 03:29 PM
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There was a very rare 'missing text' T206 that had a scientific examination to determine if the text had been artificially removed. I assume in response to the examination that concluded there were no alterations, PSA entombed it. Scott Forest and I were the ones who did the 'Pre-grading; examination.

So it can be and has been done.

Last edited by drcy; 05-15-2019 at 03:37 PM.
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  #311  
Old 05-15-2019, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by benjulmag View Post
I will add, and this is from the perspective of a person who attended card shows in the late 60s and early 70s, that I have no recollection of seeing anywhere close to the number of high grade tobacco cards one sees at current shows.
This, all day long. They weren't that way at shows in the mid-to late 80's either. And he's not the only one who said it. Do the math...
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  #312  
Old 05-15-2019, 08:14 PM
steve B steve B is offline
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While I have to take the experiences of longtime dealers into account, I just can't totally buy that there were so few high grade older cards back then. I've been into things since .. figure 78, since that's when I went to my first show.
Very high grade prewar cards weren't common then, but to say they're common now is a bit of a stretch.

Looking at the pop reports, which may be slightly high
For T206
PSA 8 8+ 9 10
2394 61 278 13

Qualifiers 8 129
9 40

Total graded - about 237,000
2915 is a bit over 1% (1.22)

SGC. (Incomplete as the pop report doesn't list 350-460 piedmonts, or at least didn't find them in the search - Yeah, it's really bad. )

8 167
8.5 43
9 28

Didn't do a total. It would have taken way too long.


That's not really all that many, especially considering how many out there that are mid grade or lower just aren't graded.

What is probably happening is that those high grade cards get more attention, and probably are for sale more often. (I'm amazed how often you guys move cards along, many of mine have been with me for 30 + years)

That doesn't mean that the high grade ones aren't altered, but the number of them out there is actually pretty reasonable.
The best I graded myself is a 7, and that came from a collection that arrived at the dealers in a box, like nearly all of them did in the early 80's. I had it in a sheet, then a screwdown, and eventually a toploader and penny sleeve.
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  #313  
Old 05-15-2019, 09:16 PM
benjulmag benjulmag is offline
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Originally Posted by steve B View Post
The best I graded myself is a 7, and that came from a collection that arrived at the dealers in a box, like nearly all of them did in the early 80's. I had it in a sheet, then a screwdown, and eventually a toploader and penny sleeve.
My concern about the number of high-grade cards is not centered around 7's. It is centered around 8's - 10's. Even if a person in 1909 saw a card he/she really liked and wanted to preserve it, I would think simply taking it out of the cigarette box and transporting it to some storage box would cause enough damage to prevent it from being a true 9. And that assumes during the ensuing 100+ years no one took the card out of the box and handled it. As for 10's, no disrespect intended, but are you kidding?

Today when vintage packs are opened and cards are pulled, do you notice the care that is taken to do that? And we are to believe such care took place a century ago when cards had NO value? Don't take my word for it. Blow up the borders of vintage 10's. When I do I see shavings or uneven borders. And I'll wager that if there a difference between the chemical composition of untrimmed borders exposed to the elements for 100+ years and trimmed borders exposed to the elements for only a few years, which difference can be revealed by advanced forensic testing, all T206 10's would be shown to be altered.

I remember in the 1990's a respected old-time dealer displayed on his table altered cards, identified as such. To my eyes, they looked totally natural. That dealer displayed them to portend the future of the hobby. I believe he hit the nail on the head.

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  #314  
Old 05-15-2019, 11:12 PM
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Nah. Everything's good and on the up and up. Just ask some of the pundits here. Or ask PWCC. Assuming that there were ever any shenanigans going on, with that auction, they have now solemnly vowed to fix it. If those high grade cards (with the stickers) weren't on the up and up and they agree (which I am sure will often occur), they're going to take care of it. Seriously. LOL.

I have been around shows since the mid-1970s. I frequented the local card shops around Temple City (just south of LA) religiously from about 1976-1979 when I went to college. There were three shops close to me. Back then they all had early cards. My brother and I were into the history of baseball and quickly got into the early cards, T206s, Goudeys, E-cards, the occasional N 172, etc. At that time, of course, nothing was graded. This is anecdotal, but I don't recall ever seeing even one card as sharp as those that are, at least in a relative sense, fairly prevalent now. Had I seen such a card, I would have bought it if I could afford it. I have none. Nor did I ever find such a card that I couldn't afford as a kid. My cards from back then are 2s to maybe, if I was lucky, a 5. Not a 7, 8, 9 or 10. They didn't exist back then. They do now. Why is that?
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  #315  
Old 05-16-2019, 04:44 AM
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I don't think kids in 1909 were looking to preserve cigarette cards in mint condition for posterity. That wasn't the mindset at all. They were handled and played with. Some were put away in decent shape, of course, but not pristine.

There are outliers, like the Southern find or Black Swamp find, but these were kids living in a rough and tumble age. Handling cigarette cards with white gloves was for sissies.
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  #316  
Old 05-16-2019, 05:21 AM
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Originally Posted by barrysloate View Post
I don't think kids in 1909 were looking to preserve cigarette cards in mint condition for posterity. That wasn't the mindset at all. They were handled and played with. Some were put away in decent shape, of course, but not pristine.

There are outliers, like the Southern find or Black Swamp find, but these were kids living in a rough and tumble age. Handling cigarette cards with white gloves was for sissies.
Additionally... I recall articles talking about kids looking for such cards on the ground...which would not contribute to keeping cards in tip top shape.

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  #317  
Old 05-16-2019, 07:01 AM
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Certainly since no high-grade prewar was prevalent in the 1970's or earlier - there have been finds and additional attics cleaned out which yielded additional cards. But enough to stock what we are seeing now and all or at least a lot of them in really high grade? I just don't buy it.
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  #318  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Kenny Cole View Post
Nah. Everything's good and on the up and up. Just ask some of the pundits here. Or ask PWCC. Assuming that there were ever any shenanigans going on, with that auction, they have now solemnly vowed to fix it. If those high grade cards (with the stickers) weren't on the up and up and they agree (which I am sure will often occur), they're going to take care of it. Seriously. LOL.
Yeah, it's easy to offer a refund, but there's an element of disingenuousness or least insufficiency to it when you have access to records showing exactly which cards you've sold over the years were consigned to you by people you say you will no longer do business with because they're suspect, but you don't identify the cards and the burden is on the owner to figure out if they have an altered card or not.
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  #319  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Peter_Spaeth View Post
Yeah, it's easy to offer a refund, but there's an element of disingenuousness or least insufficiency to it when you have access to records showing exactly which cards you've sold over the years were consigned to you by people you say you will no longer do business with because they're suspect, but you don't identify the cards and the burden is on the owner to figure out if they have an altered card or not.
Mostly searching their OWN records with serial numbered cards yielded this Information. It's a matter of time before this really grows legs, exposing the shill bidders/consignors, submitters, etc
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  #320  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:42 AM
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Default Just a couple of questions worthy(?) of another thread

There are certainly Net54 consignors to PWCC.

Can any of them come forward and verify that one of their consignments, that they truly believe is unaltered and unconserved, received a sticker from Brent?

Or are the stickers reserved for the select, elite (?) consignors?
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  #321  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Republicaninmass View Post
Mostly searching their OWN records with serial numbered cards yielded this Information. It's a matter of time before this really grows legs, exposing the shill bidders/consignors, submitters, etc
I don't know how the average collector is going to determine if a non-serial numbered card he bought from PWCC is bad or not. Most of them are not going to be obvious to the average or even trained eye, without before and after photos. Hell, they got past a TPG, right?

It might be somewhat easier on the numbered ones if you're lucky enough to find its history, but even that that's not easy.
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  #322  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by frankbmd View Post
There are certainly Net54 consignors to PWCC.

Can any of them come forward and verify that one of their consignments, that they truly believe is unaltered and unconserved, received a sticker from Brent?

Or are the stickers reserved for the select, elite (?) consignors?
So nobody on 54 could be select or elite? I guess I buy that.
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  #323  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Peter_Spaeth View Post
So nobody on 54 could be select or elite? I guess I buy that.
I also would be curious about this. I'd guess the majority of cards deserving of stickers were doctored...and following the stickers is a roadmap to many doctored cards.
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  #324  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:05 AM
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I also would be curious about this. I'd guess the majority of cards deserving of stickers were doctored...and following the stickers is a roadmap to many doctored cards.
But according to PWCC's post on Blowout, Brent has no idea whose cards they are when he assigns the stickers. Although someone traced one or more submissions and showed a high percentage of cards from the same submission getting stickered. Who knows.
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  #325  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:05 AM
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But according to PWCC's post on Blowout, Brent has no idea whose cards they are when he assigns the stickers. Although someone traced one or more submissions and showed a high percentage of cards from the same submission getting stickered. Who knows.
I really don't believe anything brent could possibly say at this time.
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  #326  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:07 AM
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I really don't believe anything brent could possibly say at this time.
Some of us still do, apparently.

For me it feels like the Aesop's fable.
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  #327  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:13 AM
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But according to PWCC's post on Blowout, Brent has no idea whose cards they are when he assigns the stickers. Although someone traced one or more submissions and showed a high percentage of cards from the same submission getting stickered. Who knows.
A blind fold could be employed to assure the randomness of the sticker selection process reminiscent of a game many of us played as kids.

Donkey.jpeg

Or is the sticker selection process dependent on the name of the "donkey"?
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  #328  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:14 AM
steve B steve B is offline
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That also need to be taken in context with the pop report numbers. only about 1% of what's been graded are 8s and up. And that's just among the ones that have been graded. If you figure there's still 3x as many ungraded, and that those are even more likely to be in low grade since they aren't really worth grading, (I never understood grading a card that's in bad shape, unless it has some other qualities that make it more valuable) And that the surviving cards are maybe 10% of what was made, the number with high grades just aren't really all that many.

I never asked, but I believe the only thing keeping the 7 I graded from being higher is the centering. I've had a few others done that I had big hopes for, that had small flaws I didn't see. (They still generally di pretty well. )

I don't doubt that some of the cards graded 8 and up are altered, but I do know that there are some cards that come pretty close that certainly aren't. And many of them got no special treatment or handling.


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Originally Posted by benjulmag View Post
My concern about the number of high-grade cards is not centered around 7's. It is centered around 8's - 10's. Even if a person in 1909 saw a card he/she really liked and wanted to preserve it, I would think simply taking it out of the cigarette box and transporting it to some storage box would cause enough damage to prevent it from being a true 9. And that assumes during the ensuing 100+ years no one took the card out of the box and handled it. As for 10's, no disrespect intended, but are you kidding?

Today when vintage packs are opened and cards are pulled, do you notice the care that is taken to do that? And we are to believe such care took place a century ago when cards had NO value? Don't take my word for it. Blow up the borders of vintage 10's. When I do I see shavings or uneven borders. And I'll wager that if there a difference between the chemical composition of untrimmed borders exposed to the elements for 100+ years and trimmed borders exposed to the elements for only a few years, which difference can be revealed by advanced forensic testing, all T206 10's would be shown to be altered.

I remember in the 1990's a respected old-time dealer displayed on his table altered cards, identified as such. To my eyes, they looked totally natural. That dealer displayed them to portend the future of the hobby. I believe he hit the nail on the head.
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  #329  
Old 05-16-2019, 10:34 AM
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Originally Posted by oldjudge View Post
Who made this guy king?
I think PWCC is the King, The King of submitting doctored cards to PSA and then selling them. I'll bet 50% of everything he has been selling is doctored, IMHO
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  #330  
Old 05-16-2019, 10:37 AM
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Originally Posted by jchcollins View Post
Certainly since no high-grade prewar was prevalent in the 1970's or earlier - there have been finds and additional attics cleaned out which yielded additional cards. But enough to stock what we are seeing now and all or at least a lot of them in really high grade? I just don't buy it.
AND THIS MY FRIENDS is the bottom line. I don't buy it for a minute John. I never really did, but with the shear amount of trimmed cards coming to light, it is a FACT. Anyone that doesn't believe it just needs to put 2 and 2 together. Pretty easy.
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Old 05-16-2019, 10:40 AM
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AND THIS MY FRIENDS is the bottom line. I don't buy it for a minute John. I never really did, but with the shear amount of trimmed cards coming to light, it is a FACT. Anyone that doesn't believe it just needs to put 2 and 2 together. Pretty easy.
I assume that was just a typo but LMAO at the "shear" amount of trimmed cards.
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Old 05-16-2019, 10:59 AM
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I assume that was just a typo but LMAO at the "shear" amount of trimmed cards.
sheerly you jest
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  #333  
Old 05-16-2019, 11:01 AM
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sheerly you jest
I was almost too sheepish to post but figured Chuck would take it the right way. After all it is about the wool being pulled over our eyes.
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Old 05-16-2019, 11:13 AM
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So why is PSA grading trimmed cards and assigning numerical grades then?
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Old 05-16-2019, 11:21 AM
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So why is PSA grading trimmed cards and assigning numerical grades then?
IMO because the card doctors are better at trimming than PSA is at detecting particularly under the constraints PSA likely imposes on its graders in terms of equipment and time.
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Old 05-16-2019, 02:26 PM
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IMO because the card doctors are better at trimming than PSA is at detecting particularly under the constraints PSA likely imposes on its graders in terms of equipment and time.
Somehow I doubt that's the whole answer
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Old 05-16-2019, 02:51 PM
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The true answer is that a few greedy pigs would ruin the whole hobby for MONEY. You have people who are trimming, doctoring, restoring(joke) and conserving and whatever else that makes the card a FAKE. Then comes the unethical dealers who don't give a shit who they screw because it's all about money anyway. They are a total disgrace to the hobby and should be shunned as such. But worst of all are the so called third party graders who are giving number grades to this crap. When these so called graders started in this hobby it was for the betterment of the hobby, separating good from bad and grading to keep everything equal. HAA! They have failed miserably and really don't care. They blame everyone but themselves. Their story is they can only find so many good graders. BULLSHIT. They don't have any good graders if this CRAP is getting by them. I hope to hell all of the company's involved in this crap go down. They are taking money under false pretenses and need to go away.
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Old 05-16-2019, 03:09 PM
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Somehow I doubt that's the whole answer
Well don't be cryptic share what you think so we can discuss?
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Old 05-16-2019, 03:19 PM
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Post 244 in this thread lists PSA's warranty reserves as of 6/30/18 to be $862K.

Suppose hypothetically there is a cost efficient forensic method available that can CONCLUSIVELY establish that a card has been altered? For example, maybe there is a way to show untrimmed borders exposed to the elements have different physical characteristics than recently trimmed borders. Or that a worked-on corner has a different paper density than an unworked-on corner. Or perhaps the bringing out of a residue crease line from a spooned-out crease. What do you think PSA's potential warranty exposure could be?

I get it that the way the warranty reads PSA must agree with the finding. But it would seem to me that if the finding is based on scientific fact, I don't see how legally PSA could ultimately avoid paying on the warranty. Based on the potentially staggering number of high grade vintage cards that could be required to be materially downgraded, it would seem to me that the warranty reserve is a fraction of what could be needed.

It intrigues me how PSA seems to be merrily going along continuing to give these vintage cards such high grades while, to use Peter's phrase, there appears to be this ticking time bomb. Can they really be so confident that the day will not come when such forensic testing becomes the norm and the bottom falls out? Is it possible they really do believe that all these high grade vintage cards are in fact unaltered? If I was running the company, based on what I believe to be the case of alteration being the rule not the exception for these cards, I would be very worried about the long-term financial implications of their current business model.

Last edited by benjulmag; 05-17-2019 at 04:54 AM.
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  #340  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:34 PM
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Meanwhile, the card at the focus of the restored/conserved/altered discussion, the 52T Mantle from PWCC, apparently has not been paid for.
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Old 05-16-2019, 08:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter_Spaeth View Post
Well don't be cryptic share what you think so we can discuss?
Praying it's not a "graders are being paid under the table" conspiracy
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  #342  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:53 PM
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Praying it's not a "graders are being paid under the table" conspiracy
I've never heard any credible evidence for that theory, but I understand why people would believe it in the face of so many mistakes. That said, after two and a half decades, some disgruntled employee surely would have said something if that were the case.
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  #343  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:55 PM
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Praying it's not a "graders are being paid under the table" conspiracy
Given the amount of money at stake I'd be much more surprised to find out that graders aren't being paid under the table.
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  #344  
Old 05-16-2019, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by pokerplyr80 View Post
Given the amount of money at stake I'd be much more surprised to find out that graders aren't being paid under the table.
But PWCC is clean.
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  #345  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:13 PM
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But PWCC is clean.
It's not looking good right now but I haven't seen enough to say for certain. If you were defending Brent based on the evidence released to date could you get him off?

I don't think I you can hold an auction house responsible for selling altered cards that were good enough to make it through PSA or SGC. Even if someone did pay off a grade or 2 to get them through.
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  #346  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by pokerplyr80 View Post
It's not looking good right now but I haven't seen enough to say for certain. If you were defending Brent based on the evidence released to date could you get him off?

I don't think I you can hold an auction house responsible for selling altered cards that were good enough to make it through PSA or SGC. Even if someone did pay off a grade or 2 to get them through.
You clearly know the law very well. On what basis are you even opining about what it is? Seriously?
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  #347  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Peter_Spaeth View Post
You clearly know the law very well. On what basis are you even opining about what it is? Seriously?
Just common sense. If they reasonably believed the cards were authentic, and a grading company agreed, how do you hold an auction house accountable. I would hope you know the law better than I do so enlighten me. What crime would have been committed?
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  #348  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:22 PM
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Just common sense. If they reasonably believed the cards were authentic, and a grading company agreed, how do you hold an auction house accountable. I would hope you know the law better than I do so enlighten me. What crime would have been committed?
Your first if is counterfactual. You're basically saying if they were innocent I don't think they could have committed a crime.
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  #349  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:26 PM
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Your first if is counterfactual. You're basically saying if they were innocent I don't think they could have committed a crime.
I haven't seen anything yet that would suggest otherwise. If you, Jeff, or anyone else has I'd like to see it.
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  #350  
Old 05-16-2019, 09:31 PM
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I haven't seen anything yet that would suggest otherwise. If you, Jeff, or anyone else has I'd like to see it.
I have.

Last edited by calvindog; 05-16-2019 at 09:32 PM.
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