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  #1  
Old 01-09-2005, 07:59 AM
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Posted By: Jeff Robinson

Hi Everyone,

I'm new to collecting cards and am starting to collect 50s cards namely 1951 and 1952 Bowman. I need help deciding the authenticity of this 1951 Bowman Mickey Mantle on eBay.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&item=5155548200&ssPageName=STRK:MEWA:IT

Any help will be appreciated. Thanks

Jeff

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Old 01-09-2005, 08:55 AM
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Posted By: Sean Coe

The question you have to ask yourself is: If it would grade a 9 why hasn't he sent it in? Why wouldn't he benefit from the extra dollars grading it would provide?

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Old 01-09-2005, 08:59 AM
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Posted By: Peter Thomas

it were real, which it is not, it would grade a 4 or 5. Look at what the seller has been buying and the fact that he has not sold anything

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Old 01-09-2005, 09:14 AM
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Posted By: dan mckee

I would only buy this card in person.

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  #5  
Old 01-09-2005, 09:26 AM
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Posted By: Brian


Stay away.......... be well Brian

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  #6  
Old 01-09-2005, 10:21 AM
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Posted By: Chuck Ross

Hey guys: Those of you who know me personally (Dan and a few others) know that I collect mainly pre-war nonsports. There have been a few auctions on eBay lately that make me wonder if some of the problems on the baseball side are slipping over into nonsports (for example, the recent auction of the super rare card #25 from the Wild West gum set by Gum Inc). I passed it up but I never really was able to decide, even after corresponding with the seller, regarding the card's authenticity.

I'd hate to pass up a tough card, though, just on a hunch. I do have a question for board members regarding cards like the one in this post and many others that come up. Usually the response from the board is that the card in question is an obvious fake. I often feel pretty ignorant that I also can't see the fake immediately. Though I moved over to nonsports years ago, I started collecting baseball cards back in the 60's and have a pretty decent vintage collection. Since I've had a fair number of vintage cards in my hands, I wonder why sometimes these blatant forgeries are not so obvious to me.

I do know the usual clues to suspect auctions (i.e. private auctions, sellers who don't have a good track record in vintage cards, etc). But my question for you guys is this: In general when there is an overwhelming concensus from the board that a card is fake, is that conclusion drawn from the scan (i.e coloring is off, borders don't look right) or is it from more circumstantial evidence (the way the auction is presented, a gut feeling about the seller)? If you had the card in hand you could use some of David's techniques to examine the printing on the card, but sometimes with only a scan to go by it seems hard to tell the difference between a crook and an inexperienced seller with a real card who doesn't present it well.

Chuck Ross

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Old 01-09-2005, 12:35 PM
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Posted By: davidcycleback

In many to most cases where a card is judged fake by this board, the card in the scan simply looks bad. It is often compounded by other signs (private auction, no guarantee, dubious history, etc).

Sometimes there are technical impossibilites & problems viewable in the image. For example, the seller says the ink washed away because it got wet with water, but lithographic ink does disolve in water ... It used to be that many handmade fakes had obviously clipped corners that were described as "naturally rounded corners," or a 1933 Goudey Ruth (real one on cardboard) that was paper thin and wavey in the image ... Most of these technical problem cards ALSO look like crap AND had a dubious seller/description, so it's usually not a close call for the potential bidder.

Also, it's general knowledge amongst experienced collectors that one should only buy a raw 1951 Bowman Mantle or 1952 Topps Mantle from known reputable dealers. Beyond fakery, there's the issue of trimming and grading accuracy on such an expensive card.

Often times it's not so much an issue of authenticity, but whether or not you should bid. And if a $8,000 min bid raw 1952 Topps Mickey Mantle is being offered by someone with low feedback and you've never heard of him, and you aren't so sure about the story, it's prudent to wait another day and another Mick.

But, as I said, many online fakes simply look like cr*p, and you wonder if the people bidding on them have actually ever seen a real one before.

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Old 01-09-2005, 01:01 PM
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Posted By: davidcycleback

A man who specialized in 1933-5 Goudeys contacted me because he recently read about the prevelance of reprinted and fake 1933 Goudeys. He said he's been collecting Goudeys for about 20 years and was worried that he might have some fakes in his collection.

I said, "If you've been collecting Goudeys for 20 years, you'd be the first to know if any of your cards are reprints."

***
The point of the story being, if one collects and enjoys and handles and loves to look at certain issues, the vast majority of reprints and counterfeits will stand out like Terrell Owens when the television cameras are turned on.

The times even the experieced collector, and even auction house experts, will be unsure or even fooled is when he is dealing with something he's unfamiliar with. That's the time the collector can break out the trusty microscope, post to the Net54 Board "Hey what do you guys think" or send it off to a favorite grader.

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Old 01-10-2005, 06:35 AM
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Posted By: warshawlaw

A seller who sells high end fakes doesn't last for long without getting slammed hard in feedbacks and NARU'ed, which is why these guys change names more frequently than their underwear. Low feedback, lack of expertise, private auction, private feedback and authenticity disclaimers are key factors. So is a raw item being sold with a sob story or with an admission that the item would be worth a lot more graded. I agree I cannot see it in the scans many times, but combine that with the other factors above. There are sellers who offer quality items that they do not understand. Frequently, these sellers are out of their expertise and throw the item up there without reserve to see what it gets.

I make it a rule not to deal with low feedback people unless I know them and to treat most raw cards as fakes. I've been burned only a few times.

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Old 01-10-2005, 10:56 AM
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Posted By: Jeff Robinson

Thanks for the help.

I had no plans on bidding on that Mantle because I figured it would be BS since it is not graded and they want such a high price to buy it now being upgraded.

My question is how can you tell looking at the picture that the card is a reprint? I understand the story does not fit and if it was such a great card it would be graded.

Thanks again

Jeff

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