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1974 A Review of the Year In Unopened Rack, Cello and Wax Packs
One idea that has been raised was to focus on one year for each post. So here it is... the focus will be on 1974. This was picked specifically because it is not the most popular year to collect and when you stop and look around, there are not many unopened items available from this year in the market. Hence this could offer a good opportunity to purchase.
Photos of Wax Trays and Rack Packs
Unopened Items That Were On The Market
Here is a quick breakdown on what was issued in terms of unopened items to collect
- Topps Baseball Packs
- Topps Baseball Packs - Fun Packs
- Topps Jigsaw Puzzle Packs Test (Seaver on wrapper)
- Topps Baseball Stamps Album (Test)
- Topps Baseball Action Emblems (Test)
- Topps Deckle Edge Baseball Photos (Test)
- OPC BB
- Topps Football Packs
- Topps Football Packs - Fun Packs
- Topps Hockey
- OPC Hockey
- OPC WHA Hockey
- Topps Basketball
- Topps Hockey Emblem packs
- Topps BB
- Topps FB
- OPC Hockey
- Topps BB
- Topps FB
NOTE: Any so called 1974 Grocery Cellos (10 to 12 card cellos) were not issued by Topps
Did you know that 1974 was the year of Price Increases? At the end of the BB card production cycle, Topps tested raising the pack price from 10 cents to 15 cents.
Ever seen a 1974 BB Wax Tray? How is different from the 1976 BB Wax Tray? The 1974 tray has a 10 cent price on the cello wrapper while the 1976 Tray has a 15 cent price.
In 1974, Topps changed the color of Rack Header. Previously, from 1970 - 1973, the Header had been mainly a yellow, two sided design (with some exceptions in 1971)
Cello Packs and Test Issues
So what are some potential opportunities that collectors might be interested in?
Racks and Cellos (Baseball and Football)
From a collector standpoint, this is not the most popular year, thus 1974 tends to fly under the radar but take a look at the supply that is currently on the market. For the last three years it has been both limited and flat!
Key Stat: Compare 1974 BB this to 1975 BB, Clearly 1975 is a much more popular year with collectors. You have the Brett and Yount rookies, dual color design, MVP cards, etc. However in terms of market volumes, 1975 rack hold their value even though they are five times more available than the 1974 racks. If you do not believe it. Test it yourself. Measure the amount of 1975 vs 1974 racks available across a 90 day period. In an average year (i.e. no one selling huge collection, etc), let me know what you see. As for 1974 FB, how many racks and cello packs have you seen on the market this year or in any previous 90 day period?
This is a tough one, as some collectors will not share this view, but I've always been a fan of the Test Issues. First off, I think they are significantly rare. How many Test Packs or wrappers do you currently see, or have you seen over the last couple of years? Do you think you have seen more than 15 packs of the four test issues COMBINED over the last three years? I do not think that I have seen more. If you think about this, this is a very tiny amount. So based on the limited volume, I see this as something that will continue to appreciate greatly over the near term. If the price for these packs are too high, you may want to consider purchasing the Wrappers for your collection. These too, tend to be limited and some are still in the hundred dollar range, but sometimes you can find them at a bargain price.
There is so much more to get into - focusing on Basketball and Hockey, but we'll have to hit that another time.
What do you think about the 1974 Issues? Where do you think there are hidden opportunities for the Unopened Pack Collector?
Some Links for the Unopened Pack Collectors
- eBay Store - The Unopened Pack Store and More
When you are ready to buy PSA, GAI, Cello Pack, Wax Pack and Rack Pack items, please consider my Unopened Pack Store.
- The Ultimate Guide to Collecting 1970 Baseball Cards eBook: Sports Collectors Daily, Unopened Pack G
The Ultimate Collector’s Guide to 1970 Baseball Cards includes an incredible accumulation of information on the cards, the sets, the packs, the boxes, the sidebar sets, the test issues, and much, much more. Over 50 photos in total!
- Old Unopened Topps Packs (Wax, Cello and Rack)
Here is a link to a blog I've set up with some other interesting information on unopened items from the 1970's.
- Overview of the Unopened Pack Market from the 1970's.
If you an Unopened Pack Collector, you may enjoy this link to my About Me page on Ebay.
- Unopened Packs - To Grade or Not Grade?
Here is a link to Tuff Stuff Magazine for an article on the Unopened Market and Grading.