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aaron1050 Profile
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Re: Aaron's "I finally figured out how to post photos" thread...


quote:

Richd1482 wrote:

Enjoyed the read. X-Men were definitely hugely popular in the 90s! I'm ten years younger so I was still playing with those toy biz toys emoticon Do you still have that collection?

Looking forward to part two emoticon



Thanks, Rich. Total exercise in self-indulgence, but I wanted to write this down so I don't forget the details in my later years. emoticon

And yep, I still have my X-Men figures. I would buy one of each in the nicest card I could find and one of each to open. I had a bookcase with glass doors and had one shelf devoted to my loose Super Powers display and one shelf devoted to my loose X-Men display.

Once I stopped collecting, I boxed 'em up and they've been stored away ever since. But I did just have my carded Iceman graded by AFA so I could display him at some point.


Last edited by aaron1050, 5/16/2014, 2:03 pm
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SuperPowerNate Profile
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Re: Aaron's "I finally figured out how to post photos" thread...


I love the story, Aaron. Looking forward to part two! I was born in '78 so I'm almost exactly in between you and Rich.

---
---Nate---

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aaron1050 Profile
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Gather around and I shall tell yee a tale... (Part Two)


BTW, I wasn't planning on this being a two-parter, but I didn't plan on writing this much either!

And so we continue...

So I was no longer collecting toys, and other than a very occasional trip to the comic store to buy a new comic by a writer I liked, I was no longer collecting comics. I did, however, maintain a bit of a professional connection to the comics/toys world so I tried to keep myself at least somewhat up to date of what was going on and that included the rise of AFA and the collectible toy market on E-Bay.

Even still, years went by and we must flash-forward 10 years again, this time to 2008. It just so happened that I had taken a job at a new company whose upcoming film would be part of a panel at that year’s San Diego Comic-Con, so I planned to drive down for the day to see it.

Now I was still a collector (I always seem to be collecting something), but at this point it was mostly vintage non-sports cards that resulted in many different auction houses sending me their catalogs. And it just so happened that about this time I received an auction catalog from Premier Auctions for their "The Greatest Toy Auction on Earth". ]See link to auction results here. ]And here for the catalog itself.

Leafing through those pages, once again I was struck by that waive of nostalgia, and conveniently enough here was seemingly one example of each toy for each toy line I was interested in as a kid and all AFA graded to boot (this made the figures easy to judge grading and I loved the look of the figures in their acrylic cases – I always likened it to art). Chief among the lines I was interested in was the Super Powers line. And it just so happened that the Super Powers line would be live auctioned in San Diego near the Comic-Con the morning of the film panel.

So I figured what the heck, I would head down early, stop at the auction (mostly just to look at all this cool stuff in-person) and then head over to the convention. I didn't go down there planning to spend a fortune, but in retrospect, I wish I did (and not just Super Powers figures). I was mostly just curious.

I was primarily interested in the AFA 85 carded Cyborg, it being the holy grail of the production line that I could never afford when I was in college. Him and the AFA 85 Hawkman were my targets if I was going to buy anything. Getting there early, before the auction began, there weren't many people in the room and I could quietly look over the glass-display cases which were neatly filled with seemingly every toy being offered in the auction. It was a wonderful experience, almost like being in a quiet vintage toy museum.

I ended up getting the Cyborg, along with an AFA 85 loose Clark Kent (who was probably my favorite figure in the line) and an AFA 85 Justice Jogger, because it was just so cheap. Meanwhile, I ultimately passed on the Hawkman because his beak had lost some paint on the interior of the bubble. (I was too picky and not educated enough yet on the rarity of high-grade Super Powers material.) And lastly, just for the heckuvit I got the AFA 80-Y carded Mr. Miracle even though he wasn't an 85 because he was considered the second toughest Super Powers figure back when I was in college.

I left the auction, with my winnings en tow and proceeded to the convention (sad to say, the auction was the highlight of the day!). Now those toys ended up on display in my new office, but it did not spark my immediate return to collecting toys. I stayed very much focused on building vintage non-sports PSA sets and for awhile my new Super Powers figures were just a cool thing to display, but not anything I was serious about.

A couple years later, however, in 2010, I found this site and started to get the itch to add to my collection with some select 85 carded figures (without much luck). But it wasn't until 2012 that I really sparked. By then I had stopped actively collecting vintage non-sports cards (or at least buying them) and I was itching to collect something new. Then during that summer I was finally able to add two carded AFA 85 figures that were at the top of my list (Red Tornado and Martian Manhunter, two figures I’d had in college but not in this kind of shape) and that ended up expanding my display at my office (see the first page of this thread) which also had me thinking about adding some loose figures to compliment the display.

And that's when I got it in my head that I was going to finally go all-in and try and collect each carded figure in the set in AFA 85 and also go back to my old loose Super Powers figures and try to use them as a basis to have a collection of every loose figure in the set in AFA 85 or better. That quest that I’d started back in 1993 of having each loose figure in NM and complete condition was about to be picked up 20 years later.

Man, I typed too much again, so I gotta go to Part Three…
 


Last edited by aaron1050, 10/20/2014, 8:43 pm
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Gather around and I shall tell yee a tale... (Part Three)


And now our conclusion...

When I had stored away my Super Powers figures back in '95, I'd placed each one in a zip-loc bag and all of them neatly stacked on top of each other in a tightly sealed plastic box. That was smart. (Pre-Container Store smart.)

What was not so smart was storing the box at my mom's house. When I'd gone back home to reclaim it years later, turned out my mom had allowed my young nephews to crack it open and play with some of the figures quite a few times.

So by the time I really went through the box in 2012 with a discerning eye for condition, I'd noticed that a handful of figures were not going to grade to AFA 85 and another handful were missing altogether. I had a good eye back then, but it wasn't perfect (and my nephews playing with them didn't help, LOL).

When I finally finished sorting, I was able to confidently send 21 figures to AFA for grading over a couple submissions that went well into 2013, and they all came back several months later at AFA 85 or better.

The other 13, I would have to buy or had already bought. So over nearly a year, as I was sending off my submissions to AFA, I picked up the ones I needed already graded AFA 85 or better (not as easy as you'd think on E-Bay), but I still needed two more: Green Arrow (whose accessories my nephews had lost) and Penguin (whom apparently my nephews disposed of completely).

At this point all my loose figures were either from my original collection that I'd submitted myself or were ones already graded by AFA that I'd bought. This was late summer 2013 and I was still those two short and E-Bay just wasn't listing loose AFA 85 Green Arrow or Penguin. My choice was either to remain patient until they were listed or go old school.

Being so close to the finish line, I said to heck with patience and I reached back into my old habits and bought both figures on common beat up cards and sent them off to AFA to be opened. Near the end of the year I finally got them back to complete my set.

Finally now getting around to post them, below is a photo of all of them together.

The goal in 1993 was to have all 34 loose Super Powers figures in NM/MT and complete condition. 20 years later I had 34 loose and complete Super Powers figures graded AFA 85 (NM/MT) or better.

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Meanwhile, I am chugging along for the carded Super Powers figures I still need and I'm nearly done with the vehicles and play-sets (which I also decided to complete).

My apologies for my rambling and too much detail. But like I said, I wanted to write this down before I forget all of these details. emoticon


Last edited by aaron1050, 10/20/2014, 9:52 pm
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Re: Aaron's "I finally figured out how to post photos" thread...


Here's the break-down of the loose set... "(OC)" means my original collection.

Series 1 (1984) Loose
1. Lex Luthor 90 – (OC)
2. Aquaman U90
3. Batman 85
4. Brainiac 90
5. Penguin U85
6. Joker 85 – (OC)
7. Hawkman 85 – (OC)
8. Green Lant. U85
9. Robin 90 – (OC)
10. Won. Wom. 90 – (OC)
11. Superman U85
12. Flash 90 – (OC)

Series 2 (1985) Loose
1. Dr. Fate 85 – (OC)
2. Firestorm U90
3. Green Arrow U90
4. Mar. Manh. 85 – (OC)
5. Red Tornado 85 – (OC)
6. Mantis 85
7. Steppenwolf 85
8. Kalibak 90 – (OC)
9. Parademon 85 – (OC)
10. Desaad 85 – (OC)
11. Darkseid U90

Series 3 (1986) Loose
1. Cyborg 85 – (OC)
2. Mr. Miracle 85 – (OC)
3. Mr. Freeze 85
4. Samurai 90 - (OC)
5. Tyr 90 – (OC)
6. Cyclotron 85 – (OC)
7. G. Pharaoh 90 – (OC)
8. Plasticman 85 – (OC)
9. Shazam 90 – (OC)
10. Orion 90 – (OC)
11. Clark Kent 85
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Richd1482 Profile
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Re: Aaron's "I finally figured out how to post photos" thread...


The graded loose set looks awesome emoticon

Good luck tracking down the carded 85 set!

---
-Rich (richd1482@gmail.com)

WTB:
Any display items except the shelf talker
Any Prototypes/PrePro items, cromalins, art, etc
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Re: Aaron's "I finally figured out how to post photos" thread...


Great story Aaron, I enjoyed reading it! Thanks for sharing it with us.

---
-KEN-

WTB:
Estrela comics- Shazam

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Re: Aaron's "I finally figured out how to post photos" thread...


Aaron, thanks for sharing, wonderful stories. I love those loose AFA figures - I've seen some with their minicomics, was that an option when you had yours done?
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aaron1050 Profile
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Re: Aaron's "I finally figured out how to post photos" thread...


Hey, Geoff, yes, was an option to include the mini-comics, but I preferred them without (both aesthetically and because of the size).
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Re: Aaron's "I finally figured out how to post photos" thread...


Adding my opened Clark Kent mailer graded AFA 85...

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Last edited by aaron1050, 10/19/2014, 10:16 pm
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