Authored by Rodney Southern in Toys and Games
Published on 11-29-2009
Sports cards were once considered to be little boys toys. They were those little pieces of cardboard that would be stuck between the spokes of their bicycles to make that funny sound. Now they are big money. The cards from the early forties and fifties are worth a small fortune, and precious few people had the hindsight to take care of those cards. Even the modern cards can be valued at incredibly high levels.
Taking care of your sports cards is something that you simply have to do anymore. That or wish you had down the road. How do you take care of your sports cards though? The key is dry and dark.
The first step in taking care of your sports card collection is to keep them dry. Wet cards are absolutely destroyed the minute they get that way. Never place cards in places where condensation can reach them. Keep them in an area that will be at room temperature all the time, and is completely free of leaks.
Next, you want to keep your sports cards in the dark. Now this can mean putting them in specially made sports card boxes, or keeping them in a darkened room. Whatever the case, you need to keep the light away to prevent them from fading. Once they fade, little can be done to save their value for future generations.
Speaking of boxes, do not ever store them in shoe boxes and the like. These boxes are not made for sports cards, and they will damage the cards. One bent corner on a card can drop the value to near zero. On a similar note, do not ever put rubber bands around your sports cards. This will leave creases on the edges which is yet another condition mistake.
Take the time to purchase some of the white hobby boxes that can be had for a few bucks. These boxes keep the cards protected and are fairly inexpensive. They come in various sizes to fit most any collection.
Some individual cards are so valuable that they need to be kept in individual holders. These holders are called hard holders, and they can be purchased anywhere that sports cards are sold. You need to also get what is called penny sleeves to give added protection. Loading the cards into these holders can be a danger as well.
To load them safely, you need to hold the penny sleeve in the open position with one hand and carefully place one corner of the card into the opening. Once in, the card can then be safely moved into the penny sleeve. Take caution not to catch the corners or edges on the sleeve. Then you take the sleeved card and do the same process with a hard holder.
While this seems like a bit of a pain in the tail, consider this example. A 1986 Fleer Michael Jordan Rookie Card could be had for about ten bucks back when they first came out. 1986 was not so long ago, huh? Now that card in Mint condition sells for thousands. I ask you now, is it worth it?