Classic Collectibles - Antiques and Nostalgic Item's

What is a Collectible Item?

Since time passes so fast sometimes it seems like various items will be around forever but in fact most things have various limits to their life and production. Reasons for this being true may include material supply, design obsolescence, new innovation, technology, and also fads. Items produced may have a real world practical use, and one might be very fond of a certain way things were done or fashioned.

An element of uniqueness and beauty can be in the eyes of the beholder, seeing an item as being of great value either monetarily or personally. Collectibles can most certainly remind someone of found memories from the past. The interesting collectible may be from an era of long ago or from the current time one resides.

What is valuable to one person may be not valuable to someone else. A variable market of perceived value will always exist. Like the old saying goes “what is one mans junk is another mans treasure. We all value certain items, be it a physical item or a virtual one. It is interesting and not easy to predict trends of value. Perhaps we all decide for ourselves what has value to us or it may just be a simple matter of personal preference based on opinion.

For many the excitement of collecting various items is both rewarding and fun. The items might be new or made in the past long ago. Items of value for collecting that were produced in the past can be loosely categorized as antiques. Collectibles that are considered antique are often of an older nature, or produced in an early era of time.

Antiques of the past may have something inherently special about them, and by their vary existence are in fact valuable in representing the time they came from. For example, early motorcycles were much like bicycles with a motor added to the frame. Compared to modern technology and design they are obsolete by their vary nature but an important insight and nostalgic exists by recognizing the value of what they represent.

Great popularity exists in collecting many fascinating items from rare books to furniture. It all just depends on what somebody loves and is interested in. There seems to be almost no limit to the kind of collectibles people find so interesting. Specialized groups may ban together as enthusiasts regarding a specific interest. Organizing groups in this way might grant them strength in their pursuits of acquiring items they find mutually valuable.

Many destinations online connected to social media also have special collectors groups. Members of these groups have a common interest in items they share a similar passion about. Subjects discussed by the groups participating members can be detailed and wide ranging. Automobiles, bicycles, comic books, fine wine, old furniture, toys, posters, coins, jewelry, fishing gear, stamps, magazines, vinyl records and CD’s are just some of the many popular items considered by the collectors.

Websites will often list many different items for purchase and trading. These websites are numerous and offer a world of different options. Some websites will post important information like scheduled meetings of groups and live auctions. These live auctions are a great way to take a first hand look and inspect items considered for bidding. Often the highest bidder will certainly win the auction for a particular item and possibly get a great deal.

Garage and yard sales can be a very fine place to “pick” and browse for miscellaneous things desired. These random types of sales environments add an element of mystery to your search, and you might find a real rare item quite unexpectedly. Picking is sort of like venturing out in search of collectibles and antiques. A real fun experience can be had by picking for items out of the blue. You never really know what you may find at a garage or yard sale. All that is required is time and an open mind for some looking around. Many people that run a garage or yard sale may have very flexible prices that can be successfully negotiated according to your budget.

Estate sales often occur when a person passes away and their assets are liquidated for cash. These types of selling places might be formally organized like auctions, and sometimes they are rather casual like a garage or yard sale. Estate sales often include personal items like furniture, clothes, shoes, watches, and jewelry. Items for sale may be summarized on a master list for convenience. This is an ideal environment to talk a good deal because the items are there for liquidation and the person selling them is not necessarily attached to them.

Thrift stores will acquire items often donated to the store or organization at random. The items and collectibles offered at a thrift store have the element of being discounted and can be a great bargain if chosen carefully. Don’t worry if a collectible item is incomplete. Even if an item is damaged or has parts missing they can often be collected in several pieces to assemble together completely.

Newspapers and mailing lists can be interesting to browse through for individual collectibles. Sometimes it is as easy as starting up a conversation with somebody and letting them know exactly what you are looking for. Take proactive responsibility for your collectibles search and make your desires known. Be careful not to forget about mentioning something really important you would like to acquire. Make a list of all the items you are interested in, and feel free to hand them out printed on flyers or written by hand.

Junk yards and disposal cleanup area’s can be a great place to find random things. Mostly there might be items in poor condition in these kinds of places. Probably pieces of rubbish will be the most common things found. Often with careful picking one can find items in nice condition for free that someone just wanted to dispose of. I have many times seen things like nice mechanics tools with just a little rust thrown away in the trash. Tools can be reconditioned and reused.

Many items that are left for disposal can be reclaimed or recycled for their composition. Brass, copper, or aluminum items can have value just for the metal they are made from. Televisions and stereos can be refurbished and repaired. Many collectible items can still be quite usable. Real good things sometimes are considered junk. All it takes sometimes is a little effort on your part to clarify if something is no longer wanted and ask if you can have it for free.

Some collectibles are considered broken and junk. A large number of these items can be restored and resold at a nice profit. Often old or obsolete items are considered trash but might be highly collectible. Old furniture might have broken parts and pieces but if restored they might be used for personal use or resold for a profit to the right person.

Try using your imagination to find lots of collectible items you might be interested in. People all the time have closets and sheds full of things they forgot about a long time ago. Collectible items people may have in storage could also be unremembered and acquired for free or purchased at a deal. Talk with family and friends or neighbors. They can possibly lead you to really nice items not initially offered for sale, but if the right offer is made you may find they are readily available to be purchased.

Different Era's and antique types

Depending on what type of items get your interest they usually can be categorized by how old they are or by the time period they are made in. You never know exactly sometimes where something comes from or when it was made. Such matters for consideration like these can affect the item price or collect ability and need to be looked into. Do not over analyze items so you can maximize your time managed. Too much contemplation or mulling over minor matters can use up valuable time. Get a hold of some summarized information to help you buy or acquire what you want in a timely manner. If you waste too much time figuring out miscellaneous facts, the great deal you may find will probably go to someone else.

Do not be afraid to ask for advice about a collectible item if needed. Often rare antiques are inquired about before a purchase is made. A wise purchase needs to involve some kind of thought seriously put into evaluation. For example, if a rare or very old antique item is not common an expert or adviser might certainly be needed to look into pricing information and authenticity. Even if an item is antique it may not carry the same value as the original. Reproductions are often commonly found and are really great deals but will often not be from the same time period and carry the same value as the original item would.

Think about what items you are considering collecting. Classifying them by time period or era might be very useful. Here are some general classifications to help give you some ideas about era consideration.

  • Prehistoric era
  • Medieval era
  • Renaissance era
  • Colonial era
  • Early American era
  • 20th century time period
  • Machine age
  • World War I
  • Roaring Twenties
  • Great Depression
  • World War II
  • Atomic Age
  • Post-war era
  • The Fifties
  • Cold War era
  • Korean War
  • Space Age
  • The Sixties
  • Vietnam War
  • Post-Modern era
  • Information Age
  • The Seventies
  • The Eighties
  • The Nineties
  • Gulf War
  • The Dot-com era
  • 2000 era
  • The Social Age
  • The Big Data age
  • Modern era, and contemporary time period

Furthermore, ages and time periods may be classified and expanded into more detailed sub categories dealing specifically with things relating to geographical areas, mythological and astrological time periods, general historical time periods, cosmological time periods, and many others.

All these details relating to time period will affect the rarity and value of a collectible item. Some very old items might be worth a great deal of money and even newer items might be rather high in price for reasons like rarity. When collecting things like coins or postage stamps, errors in design and manufacture might create a rare mistake that can increase their collectible price dramatically. Other items like old artifacts may be considered priceless in value and become displayed in a museum or gallery. Do not discount the idea of stumbling upon very rare or ancient collectibles. Often these special collectibles will go unrecognized by most people and not considered valuable.

An important consideration for you to make is what items may be worth your attention collecting. Here are some popular items highly sought after by collectors.

  • Toys, action figures, pedal cars, skate boards, surf boards, comic books, old books.
  • Cars, automobile parts, motorcycles and parts, go carts.
  • Bicycles and parts, tricycles, mini bikes.
  • Arcade machines, pinball machines, video game consoles and games, board games.
  • Home electronics, computers and parts, stereos, radios, video players, film projectors.
  • Miscellaneous furniture, lamps, lighting fixtures, chandeliers, clocks, book cases, beds, tables, dining room sets, tables, mirrors, trunks, cabinets, brass spittoons, doors, stain glass windows, carpet, coat racks, display cases, desks, shelving units, vases and pottery.
  • Physical and virtual coins, jewelry, costume jewelry, stock certificates, precious stones.
  • Stoves, ovens, pots and pans, stills, dishes, silverware, cups and glasses, jugs, bottles.
  • Miscellaneous home appliances, blenders, mixers, refrigerators, crock pots, food dehydrators, juicing machines, rotisseries, toasters, hot dog cookers, grills, BBQ’s.
  • Signs, neon signs, classic posters, lithographs, advertising materials, tour programs.
  • Miscellaneous musical instruments, pianos, guitars, violins, cellos, keyboards, organs.
  • Air conditioners, heaters, plumbing supplies, construction materials, wood, electrical.
  • Clothes, shoes, boots, jackets, masks, costumes, robes, helmets, uniforms, hats.
  • Sporting goods, bats, sport shoes, footballs, baseballs, basketballs, jerseys.
  • Miniatures and models, unique replicas, buttons, trophies, medals and patches.
  • Sewing machines, fine materials, stitching needles, crafts, yarn and string.
  • Tools, manufacturing machines, wheels and tires, lawn maintenance equipment.
  • Movies, movie posters and memorabilia, famous photos, autographed items.

There are no limits to the imagination relating to what types of items are collected by everyone in one form or another. Some collectibles are in great demand, others are popular but rare and not easy to find. Even trivial items are considered collectibles to some like soda cans and bottles.

Some antiques and older items do not necessarily show wear or age in an obvious way. People find old motorcycle parts over 50 years old that have rust but can be easily restored and re manufactured so even though they are rather weathered in their appearance they still have value for what they are. Some items made of metal like gold do not necessarily show their age in an obvious manner at all. Old jewelry made of gold or silver may be fantastic looking but in actuality be very old and rare. Knowledgeable advice from an expert might be needed to appraise items which can not be easily identified by their appearance and condition.

Old antique furniture in past eras was usually made of wood. The wood might just need refinishing with paint or stain. Wood furniture might also be partially rotten and need careful restoration and piece replacement. Wood type can be a way of judging something’s value. If the wood is old and made of a low quality particle board it might not be worth anything. Particle board is not solid wood and has been formed into shape by piecing together multiple pieces of wood.

Fine hard woods like solid white oak, rose wood, and hard maple are often considered rather high quality woods used to make furniture and are highly sought after in regards to antiques. Trunks and cabinets from past eras are fun to collect and can be very attractive pieces of furniture to consider having in ones home. Older era trunks were assembled like strong boxes and popularly assembled with solid wood. Newer trunks are often made less sturdy with particle board or ply wood. These examples should give a good idea to illustrate some ways older and newer items need to be considered when sought for collecting and purchase.

Categories and Classifications

As mentioned already many collectibles, antiques, and nostalgic items can be categorized by the time period they come from and type of item they are. Further dimensions relating to collectibles can be sub categorized by additional miscellaneous classification factors. Some find it enough to believe in simple classification, others find it better to add a more detailed element of description to the condition of an item depending on what it is.

For example, physical coins depending on their distribution use and care may be in untouched mint condition or worn terribly by everyday trading. Additional consideration might be given to the composition of the material they are made of. A large number of physical coin collectors assign a grade of quality to the coin.

A mint condition coin is generally perfect and in a un circulated state. Physical coins may receive a lower quality grade depending on how the coin was maintained or used. Lower quality physical coins are often valued most for their metal composition. Metal compositions to be considered popular for collectible physical coins are platinum, gold, silver, and copper. If a physical coin is badly worn or not particularly rare, its main collectible value might exist in its composition. Badly worn coins of valued composition might be called “junk coins”.

Junk silver coins are popular for collecting as an alternative to buying pure metal bullion physical coins and bars. Since the junk coins are usually rather worn they may not necessarily carry numismatic collectible value but might hold a reasonable value for the metal they are made of. The term numismatic refers to the study and collection of money and currency. Other factors to consider regarding physical coins relate to the geographical area or country they may have originated from in addition to the time period they are from.

Similar to grading physical coins, there are grades of condition for books like comics. Old comic books from around the World War II era are usually considered from the “golden age” of comic books. More recent comic books are considered generally from the “silver age”. When dealing with comic books it makes a big difference what age they are considered to have originated from. Silver age comic books could be worth hundreds of dollars, while Golden age comic books may be worth many thousands of dollars each.

Past era books including comic books were not necessarily made to last for a long period of time, nor were they considered to be future collectibles. In general older comic books are made of a type of paper that is quite sensitive to sunlight and will dry out or yellow with too much light exposure. Special comic book polyurethane bags or other collector’s bags are used to store comic books and protect them from harm. The special bags do not contain any acid or oils that can sometimes be released by plastics and damage the books. Even old books from the early 1900’s or earlier can fall apart very easy if not given the proper attention they need. Mint quality comic books in near perfect condition from past eras are certainly considered rather valuable but if they are in poor condition this can greatly affect their value and collectability. Other factors to consider in regards to classic collectible comic books are subject matter, publisher, artist, and featured characters.

The most common solution for books and physical coins to stay protected while in storage is to use some kind of protective sleeve. In the case of comic books special storage bags are used to protect the books. With coins the preferred method for maintaining high quality and protecting the coins is using a ridged plastic display mount or using plastic storage tubes. The plastic storage tubes for coins work well when protecting physical coins in batches of around twenty of the same size or series. Comic books are best sealed individually to protect their mint like quality or they can be carefully bundled and stored several at a time in larger storage bags. When carefully following these methods, high quality coins and comic books can be stored reliably and possibly maintain a higher quality grade over time.

Furniture from past eras is graded by similar means of quality and time period. Both of these grading factors are the determining factors to pricing collectible furniture value. As mentioned before the quality of the wood and type of wood used are big factors when considering antique furniture price. Mint condition antique furniture made of wood will generally have a much newer appearance than its true age and the wood will be fresh in nice condition.

Most of the time classic antique furniture is always made of wood. There are variations of material types, like brass was used on higher line antique beds and some furniture. Glass might have been used to construct some antique furniture like display cases and tables. Rod iron was popular for some older era furnishings. Be careful to closely examine the rod iron for rust because old iron is prone to rust through and not be worth much if in poor condition.

Antique brass furniture might appear to be in almost mint like condition when polished. A better price might be given to you for purchase when a brass antique furnishing has a shabby appearance. If you are lucky a brass furnishing might only need a bit of polish to look as good as new again. Keep in mind that pure brass furniture and brass plated furniture are two different things. Pure brass furnishing can be restored usually to a like new condition but brass plated items often have the plating chipping off and this can be good and bad at the same time.

If you really would like to acquire a brass furnishing because it has an element of collectible value to you, a chipping brass plated finish might allow you to purchase the item for less cost because of the lower grade condition. Chipping brass furnishings can be re plated with a new finish, but the additional cost to do so is a important consideration.

Toys and collectibles are generally considered a higher mint quality when presentable in a near new condition, and possibly including the original container or box. An original Star Wars action figure from 1976-77 in the original packaging in nice condition is worth considerably more than a loose action figure of the same type. Reproduction toy boxes are available and can be used where applicable but do not necessarily increase an items value because they are not the original container.

Many people collect old classic hot wheels and matchbox cars. If they are presentable in like new condition, or sealed in the original packaging they are worth much more. This appearance of a more mint item condition adds to the desirability of the item. If one is just collecting for their own personal enjoyment then highly grading an item may not be as important as just acquiring it for collecting.

Home electronics items will sometimes only have a certain shelf life depending on the type of device and manufacture. An old television set might have a burned out picture tube from heavy use, but one used less often may be in like new condition. If someone needs to restore any item like a piece of home electronics factors like parts availability must be considered.

For example, when restoring an old classic record player one might consider the brand name and manufacturer. If the stereo is a Panasonic brand record player there is a good chance there might be an existing supply of replacement parts available somewhere to make repairs. When a stereo is an off brand or unpopular type there might not be any parts available to repair it. Some enthusiasts will often collect several stereos or collectible items, and then assemble a working item using a combination of pieces. This alternative works well when current parts are in rare short supply or unavailable.

A large number of factors will be present and unique to each collectible item considered for your own. Experience and expertise in one type of collectible or more might give you valuable insight related to various elements for consideration. It is also a valuable piece of knowledge to be very aware of the particular categories and classifications associated with any collectible item you have an interest in.

When considering different items for collecting and purchase always be sure to make note of the condition. Try to be aware of how that affects the collectible items value. If you are not definite about pricing such items be sure to get expert advice or a second opinion from someone. Perhaps if you word the sales offer well, any conditional subcategory concerns can work in your favor to receive a better price on the item desired.

Modern application Ideas

When picking for collectible items it is helpful to realize why you want to make the purchase in the first place. If purchasing something like a classic brass spittoon, would you use it for its intended purpose or would you have any use for collecting such an item? An old wooden rain barrel from the 1920’s sure would be nice to have if so desired but do you collect water in that manner as it was intended for? A classic brass cigar box sure would be cool looking to have sitting on your desk for what purpose? Maybe you gave up smoking cigars and why would you really need a cigar box for any reason now or ever?

Various items collected can have new life again, and be given a whole new meaning depending on how they are used. The shinny brass spittoon might make a great conversation piece sitting on your shelf even though you do not chew tobacco. The wooden rain barrel might make an excellent planter outside in the garden and be much less expensive to buy then a comparable planter bought at the garden store of the same size. A classic brass cigar box may be rather elegant to have on your desk and be excellent for holding desktop items like paper clips, sticky notes, or pens and pencils.

There is a whole universe of collectibles that can be recycled or given a new life. Often various collectibles depending on what they are can be very low cost or absolutely free to obtain. A good application idea I saw before was some nice decorative quarry stones that someone had forgotten about in their back yard. The man who owned the quarry stones was saving them for a past project that never quite got off the ground. They were very excellent granite rock stones in many different sizes and just needed a new home.

My friend purchased all the granite quarry stones and then used them to landscape all around his pool, yard, and house for a decorative look. They were imported old stones and quite expensive to purchase retail. It all just worked out to a great deal for my friend successfully negotiating a bargain price to purchase all the collectible stones. The granite stone owner also was glad to get rid of the rocks he didn’t want anymore and everyone was happy.

Sometimes collecting old music equipment can be a rather valuable experience and fun too. A classic 1960’s era public address amplifier my brother picked up at a garage sale seemed extremely interesting to him. It was a high power unit at 1000 watts of power, large and very heavy. For only $5 he made the purchase of this amplifier hoping to use it as a backup system. After getting the amplifier home and testing it out, we found why it was so cheap. Yes, it was sure loud for a PA amplifier at 1000 watts of power but it was such an outdated design and noisy that it was not practical for use.

We ended up disassembling the old amplifier knowing it was kind of a dud and that is why nobody really wanted it. When it was taken apart we noticed it had really cool old Russian high power vacuum tubes in it. After doing some research and looking up the tube part numbers we found out the classic vacuum tubes were worth around $60 each.

The unit had several tubes inside it and we uninstalled them and sold them to a local music store. Although we did not use the badly designed old PA amplifier, we made a nice little profit selling the tubes we removed from the chassis. The classic rare power vacuum tubes long out of production were made available again to someone who could appreciate and readily use them.

As a great fan of collecting antique and unusual furniture I once found an old steel rack shelving table at a local swap meet. It may have once been an auto garage tool shelf of some kind. All I knew for sure was it looked perfect to put my classic stereo on at home. It was attractively finished with a high gloss black enamel finish. The shelf unit must have been made circa 1980’s. After purchasing it promptly from the vendor at the swap meet for $2 it was set up easily. All the classic old stereo components I had fit inside it perfectly, like it was a real stereo rack. Not bad for such a low price I thought and it felt good to give a new use to this old tool rack. Now it is officially my new stereo rack.

You never really know what collectible gems and treasures you may find in the open market. Seems like many collectible items out there have some new application they can be used for. All it takes is someone to be creative and open minded.

Restoration and revision

Collectibles previously used are not often found and purchased in like new mint condition. There are some antiques and nostalgic items that are indeed in excellent shape, but most classic collectible items will require some work to preserve or restore. Older automobiles like a 1966 Ford Mustang sports car are genuine classics. One would be rather hard pressed though to take hold of a 1966 era sports car in perfect mint condition.

A 1966 Mustang sports car is a good general example for a restoration project because these are very collectible classic cars, and they are really worth fixing up and restoring. One might start at an auction making a purchase of a Ford Mustang for a good price. Probably if it’s a good deal it would need some restoring to get it nice again. Typically with classic car restoration one would need to start by working on the body work first.

Older model classic cars will not usually come with the greatest paint jobs. Many times the paint will be worn and need to be refinished. There might be accessories like authentic replacement parts that need to be added. Classic cars if they have the original paint finish did not have a clear coat to protect the paint, so even if the original paint on the cars is in OK condition sooner or later it will need a more modern paint job done.

After the attention to getting the body of the car restored and painted, the rims might be seriously considered along with new tires. Classic cars from the 1960’s would usually have 14 inch rims and tires. Compared to modern standards, these types of wheels need special attention. Original 14inch factory Mustang wheels are recommended for a 1966 Mustang since that is what the stock car configuration came with. A wider tire series is also recommended because classic sports cars often came with rather thin and skinny tires. Thin and skinny tires on classic collectible cars are referred to as “pizza cutters”.

Classic cars were kind of on the heavy side compared to modern cars and wider tires help the car handle the road much better when driving. Possibly a good choice would be 60 series tires instead of the factory 70 series. After the body of the car is restored and the wheels are done then the interior needs attention to detail. Sometimes if lucky, another car of the same type can be parted out and those parts used for a restoration of the car in better condition. Auctions, swap meets, and classic car enthusiast groups can be a great place to find original car parts and bargains. Nostalgic collectibles like cars look their very best with original parts if you can find them. Using original factory parts on classic cars also increases the value of the restoration performed.

Original Ford Mustang pony upholstery is an excellent choice. If original upholstery in nice condition can’t be found it is possible to buy reproduction classic Mustang interior materials. The reproduction materials and accessories appear as new and are often made with great detail. If needed the windshield and other auto glass has to be replaced with the right parts. Classic cars usually had clear auto glass from the factory. Modern style auto glass can be used which will be slightly tinted and will have a visor tint present on the upper front windshield. This is the best because old style clear auto glass does not protect the interior from fading and save your eyes from glare.

Last but not least the motor will need to be rebuilt and installed. This must be done delicately and is the final touch to finish the restoration. The 1966 Ford Mustang typically came from the factory with either a straight 6 cylinder engine with a manual transmission or a 289 small block V8 high performance motor. The V8 motor option came with a choice of an automatic transmission or a 4 speed manual transmission.

In this restoration a custom Ford 5 speed manual transmission will be used. The 5 speed transmission is a more modern transmission. The newer transmission will enable a more desirable driving experience and better gas mileage, since lower RPM’s can be achieved driving high speed on the freeway rather than using the old 4 speed.

These cars from the factory would have engine heads that used leaded gasoline. In this restoration the V8 engine heads will be restored to original condition but modified with adjustments to enable the use of modern unleaded gasoline. The original mechanical distributor will be maintained and restored. The nice dual exhaust system installed from the factory on the vehicle will not need to be modified with catalytic converters because cars this old are generally exempt from smog requirements in most geographical areas.

The V8 engine will be re built on a standard engine stand and completed before being installed in the car. Before installing the engine in the car, new motor mounts will be installed to facilitate a smooth running motor. New electrical wiring will be installed to replace the old original car wiring that is over 40 years old. A new battery with more amperage and power than the original battery will be installed. The new battery will supply more power to the car. This will also insure more reliable and available power to the new car stereo.

First a quick test drive to see how the car handles on the road after the restoration is done. Feels like the springs on the suspension are weak and spongy so they will be replaced with new ones. Also brand new shock absorbers and ball joints will be added to complete the suspension work. Lastly, a full wheel alignment will give the car straight and reliable steering.

With this classic 1966 Mustang car restoration outline example, we can see as much of the car as possible was kept original. Some things needed to be revised and brought up to date because this car is well over 40 years old. The revisions that were done like adding a better modern transmission and the ability to use regular unleaded gasoline are not original to the car but still add value because now the car is optimized to be driven in modern times.

Depending on the classic collectible, antique, or nostalgic item you are restoring some revision might be advisable to bring the item up to modern standards. Try to keep the collectible as original as possible. Small revisions are acceptable as updates to many collectibles and can add additional value and appreciation for the item. Use your own methods as you like and try out what is important for you.

Some really great bargains on classic video game machines I found once in an abandoned convenience store that was being renovated and sold to another owner. The store had been out of business for about 10 years. Inside there were several machines. A black and white display machine that was the original asteroids game, another game was centipede, an original donkey kong jr. game, and the last working video game machine was a frogger game.

These old arcade games were fairly simple. For every game with a joystick controller they needed springs replaced in the controller for direction. The centipede game used a track ball controller but nothing was wrong, and it was just fine. Only thing was the ball on the controller needed cleaning. The cabinets were all made of wood on every machine and were amazingly enough in very good condition considering the were about 30 years old. So we got those wiped down clean also, mostly just dusty.

After a few days the monitor on the old asteroids game went black. Since there was a second asteroid game that had no power in the back room I switched its monitor out with the machine that was working before with power. Lucky that’s all it needed and we sold the games to a local arcade for the new store owner and made a small commission. Seemed like fairly simple repair work, maybe because those old video games were really built to last years and years.

The only other video game or arcade games I saw that were built better than these were 1970’s pin ball machines. If you go inside an old arcade you will find many of these old pinball games still operational. Must still be worth thousands of dollars for most of these classic pin ball machines. They are a very nice investment I believe if you can find one for sale.

Another fun restoration project I worked on was the restoration of a classic statue. The statue was a novelty item from the 1950’s. It was shaped like a hobo clown and painted. The head could be removed and it was partially hollow inside. This was great because someone could store things inside it like paper receipts or other small things

The body had a few minor pieces chipping off and some of the paint was peeled. This old statue was not worth very much but it was my aunt’s property a long time ago. I was fond of the little statue since I was a kid and I could not throw it away. First I just finished breaking off a few small pieces of the statue to prevent it from any further breakage that might occur if I did not prune off the breaking parts of the statue. Then I went to a hobby store and purchased a tube of white porcelain statue repair glue. I also bought some white plastic putty that looked like porcelain.

I glued back the broken pieces as best I could right onto the statue. One piece was the toe of one of the clown shoes. Then I used the white plastic modeling putty to seal any obvious small cracks on the statue. I had a small nail file that I used to shape and smooth any sharp pieces of dried glue or modeling clay. Certain types of glue do not work on clay or porcelain so be sure you get the right type of glue if you need to do something like this yourself on statue repair.

After everything dried I used some small bottles of new modeling paint to repaint the repaired areas. Model paint is nice and works well because you can get many colors premixed so you can replace most colors you are trying to match rather easily. Also I bought some small plastic model painting brushes from a hobby shop, and they worked out very well. Lastly I sprayed the statue with a dull coat clear spray to help blend the new painted colors into the old paint. It made the paint finish all look faded back together again.

And there you go, statue was repaired. Some things were revised to get the statue pieced back together like gluing some of the pieces back on and repainting in spots. All in all I am glad I took the time to save the statue. It’s my good luck charm and I hope to keep it in my family for a very long time.

Approach any project you have logically and do the research to find everything you need that will do the job right the first time. Do not cut corners on restoration because things may not work right or final results could be unpredictable. Have fun and be proud of your work, and share it with others like family and friends.

Item identification and valuation

Classic collectibles are not always immediately identifiable and recognized. It is not possible to have knowledge about everything in existence. When picking and hunting for new items for your collection, sooner or later you will find something you want that is ambiguous and not readily identifiable. Some items have series or serial numbers that are helpful. Other possible information that might be on the item would be a brand name or part number. Another method to help in identifying an item might be by its shape, size, or design style.

Color could be a nice clue in identification of an item. Some items may be limited in production in various shades of color. Physical coins have a mint mark than can aid in identifying where it is made and by what mint. Item composition is good for gathering information in some context and situations.

For example, most USA physical coin currency was made of silver until the mid 60’s. If a United States coins date is unreadable then do a silver verification test. If the coin tests positive for silver content you know approximately how old it is. Possibly some coins might have some features unreadable such as the date and mint mark, but other images on the front or back might be plain and clear.

If you know what a coin has printed on it for a denomination relative to a certain set of years you can use this information to perform an educated guess. Look closely at the coin surface. Does the back of the coin have a known design common for a certain year? Details like this can be used to arrive at a conclusion when confirming identification of a collectible item.

Serial numbers are very good to make reference to identifying information. Generally a serial number may possibly indicate the place and time of production, model of item, series, and manufacturer information. The numbers on a serial number are often very significant in specifying something about it.

Many times a serial number will be a good indicator of how old an item is. Lists of serial numbers for various collectibles can be found online. Sometimes information regarding serial numbers can be obtained by contacting the manufacturer if still in business.

A helpful and easy way to price common items that are popularly collected and sold is to do a web search and look at different sites for similar items that are offered for sale. Even if a item listed for sale has been sold the price it was sold for will probably remain displayed. This can help you arrive at sort of a market estimate relative to what has been offered for sale. Antique and thrift stores may have the item you are interested in or something similar than can help estimate a price. The same type of research methods can be applied relative to pricing at local yard sales and auctions also.

Catalogs and valuation guides are like price lists that can be used for item pricing. There are also mailing lists or compilation lists that can aid a price search nicely. Also these online or printed materials often include a picture that can be very good to help compare collectibles and item details.

If a collectible item is very popular whole books of information may be available to collectors. The local library can be a fine resource when seeking current and older information. Books and magazines archived can have details that might not be found easily. It’s best to be creative and keep an open mind allowing ideas relative to item information.

Stamp book catalogs and price guides are routinely published to aid people in finding information. Stamp collecting can be complex and fine details are often formally documented for researchers. Many times popular publications are archived at local libraries.

Price guides can be found especially easy for very popular collectibles like dolls, comic books, antiques, classic vehicles, bicycles, boating accessories, souvenirs, musical instruments, and sports memorabilia. Different guides have various prices and information that might vary from publishers. Often information will vary depending on region and authors expertise. Current market conditions can also be a factor that influences many things.

Talk with others interested in subjects regarding collectibles you are most interested in. Often individuals that deal frequently with certain items will have valuable knowledge they have acquired over time. Be aware different experts will not necessarily have the same information or opinion about various subjects of interest. Gather all the information and build a reasonable conclusion about what is important to you.

Considering and Making the sale

There are many different factors to consider when building a collection. Certain geographical areas will more commonly have certain items for sale. For example, some believe the eastern side of the United States has a great deal of antiques and collectibles much more than the western side of the country. The reasoning behind this is many older towns, cities, and communities first began in the eastern USA.

If people and their families first settled down in an eastern part of the country they probably well established an environment with their possessions there. Often people may relocate for various reasons, and if they do it is possible when they move they will leave some of their assets and possessions behind. Moving can be a major event in ones life and many times unnecessary items are left behind to facilitate an easier move to a different location, especially if the place they are moving away to is far away.

Items left behind when moving may be things like furniture, appliances, rugs, cars, motorcycles, boats, clothing, and other personal possessions. It’s not necessarily true that these items are uncared for. They just might not be convenient to transport or store. People can leave behind all sorts of things. Some might be in large sheds, storage buildings, and yards. Other places things might be left behind are often in the trash or disposal area.

A moving or going out of business sale could be a great place for finding bargains and collectibles. I have heard of people that do disposal for a living and often acquire many fine items for free or a discount price. Since situations like these are often urgent negotiating a deal and price can be easier than at a formal type of sale.

When entering places to pick or search for items consider the proper behavior relative to the place you are. In large private yards or junk yards, be careful of broken items that might cut your hands. Watch any young ones that might accompany you to keep them from touching items or collectables. If something is rusty be careful not to get cut or damage your body because you can acquire illness from these situations.

Identify if an area is dusty and how it is kept. Use a paper mask or other filter so you don’t inhale harmful dust that may be in a place like an old attic. If an old storehouse or building has excessive moisture or a leaky roof, there might be harmful mold or slippery floors. Possibly collectible items might be stored in cardboard boxes or other containers that have attracted pests. Spiders, mice, and ants can be encountered sometimes. In old barns there might be bees. Just be aware and mindful of the area you are browsing in so you are proceeding safely.

Observe proper etiquette and manners when browsing for collectibles in people’s sales areas. It is often helpful to ask permission before touching or picking up items. Ask for information if you are interested in something and request to have a closer look if you like. Many times the people offering items for sale will appreciate your good manner when shopping around. Good manners might help you get a better price for an item or allow you to buy something nice that might not even have been considered for a sale. Sometimes making a sale is easier when done through an inquiry or remotely.

People that offer collectibles for sale might have their own preferred conditions when making a sale. Buying an item from a distance is sometimes convenient when a collectible item is offered for sale outside of your local area. Asking for a picture or other information about an item is usually welcome and can be easily done by email or a website.

Inquire or find out what may be an acceptable method of payment or trade. In many situations money is not needed and a trade might be done. Items can also be free sometimes. Be sure to find out how to complete the sale. Methods for payment regarding collectibles can be negotiated in local currency, checks, paypal, and possibly traded for a virtual currency like Bitcoin or Devcoin.

If you do not have a monetary way of negotiating payment for a collectible item just ask about alternatives. Possibly a seller might accept help of some kind or work done. Be honest and friendly showing your genuine interest in a collectible item you like. Don’t forget to replace items you pick up back to the place they were. Be careful not to accidentally miss return something you might have been taking a closer look at.

Browsing for items before an auction can give you a good idea on what you might like to purchase. If the items are identified by a number just make note of it so you can bid on it later. When bidding for items try not to overbid for something beyond its true value. Also do not hesitate and wait too long before making an offer for something you want because someone else might win the auctioned collectable before you.

Look into local methods that might be formally needed such as a title transfer or ownership papers. Some local areas require license or registration for certain collectibles. Be aware of details like these and how they may influence completing a purchase.

Keep in mind how you will transport an item you have purchased. If it is a large item like a car or motorcycle find out if it’s drivable. Otherwise you might need a van or flatbed truck to transport something large. Shipping or mailing a collectible item is a good way to receive a purchase. If the item is rather valuable consider a delivery service that can confirm shipment and insurance of some type.

Storing rare Item's and collectibles properly

After gathering collectibles for your collection think about where you want them. Do you have room in your home for the new items you have recently purchased? Are the items something in need of work that requires storage before placement? A good rule to follow is to not buy more than you need. Yes, sometimes it’s great to go all out and buy many things for a collection. They might be easily affordable and sought after but there must be a nice place for them to be. Many people display collectibles on shelves and in special display cases. Others may choose to bundle multiple items together of a similar type like books. The usual way to store books is in a book case or on a shelf.

You might be low on storage space for collectibles and need to consider where to place them. It is helpful to match the collectibles being considered for storage to the proper environment. If there is not room in the home for antiques or furniture a temporary storage rental space can be a great way to keep them nice. Some storage spaces are designed to keep them especially clean or limit dust.

Certain roll up storage doors do not seal out the wind very well. If you are in a place with high winds or reoccurring wind roll up storage doors will allow the wind to generally let in debris and dust. Sealed hinged doors are usually more secure from wind and they are a good place to store items in your collection you want to keep clean.

Bubble wrap and moving blankets are good for furniture when you are concerned about preventing them from being scratched and dented easily. Cedar wood chips and mothballs can help discourage pests that may find their way to your items. Be careful of glass or fragile things. It is good to store delicate items in a safe way to prevent them from being broken.

Most of the time cardboard boxes are not recommended for storing collectibles. They can tear apart, become prone to moisture, and attract pests like mice. Vinyl or plastic containers are much better than boxes made of cardboard. These containers are also sturdier and better for stacking upon each other. Be careful to use a container sturdy enough to bear the weight of the items inside. If soft plastic containers are used with heavy items they can bend out of shape and break.

Wrap delicate items individually before storing them. Glasses and dishes can be wrapped in paper or newspaper pieces. Bubble wrap is one of the best protective wrappers but use them sparingly if concerned about cost because the wrap can get expensive when using large amounts.

Collectible items like clothes, jackets and shoes are sometimes stored with cedar wood and moth balls to prevent pests from chewing on the materials. A solid air freshener is a fine way to keep away pests. For some reasons pests do not like the smell and will keep away. Bars of fragrance soap can be used sometimes, just be sure to keep the in their wrappers.

Trunks are secure and can be locked to prevent easy access to valuables and collectibles. Trunks from older eras are much stronger generally than modern ones. They are kind of like treasure chests and very nice to store collectibles inside them. Some trunks have a security loop built into them. The security loop is used to attach a cable or chain from the trunk to a stationary object to help prevent the trunk from being moved or stolen.

Some people use metal chests or drawers to secure important items. They often can also be secured with a security cable for extra protection. A heavy safe is great for securing valuables. Best to use something like this for valuables like coins and jewelry.

When storing items in an open yard unprotected try using a waterproof tarp for protection if the collectible item is large. I have seen rare bicycles and motorcycles rot away and rust in the rain when they could have been easily covered up and protected from rain and moisture. For automobiles stored in an open yard use a waterproof car cover. Collectible cars are too valuable to just leave them out in the open air. If items are not cared for well in a storage yard they will often quickly become decomposed and prone to unnecessary damage.

If using open yard storage in an area that can experience snow take the time to shovel and remove excess snowfall. The snow will melt and probably damage items. Snow is especially hard on metal collectible items and wood.

Take some extra steps to move items like these before a snow storm or heavy rain fall if you can. Paper and delicate items are not recommended at all for open yard storage. If you have no other place to store valuable collectibles other than in the open be sure to use plastic containers and waterproof tarps.

External storage closets are fine most of the time if they are clean and secure. The most common concern I have heard of with external means of storage space is danger of moisture type damage. Seal off any unnecessary ventilation holes or cover them with screen. Do not block mandatory ventilation holes and ducts because these are there for a reason, and it could introduce unnecessary concerns if they are sealed.

An attic is a good place to consider storage if it is made for it. Some attics have dangerous insulation and fibers that are not good to be exposed to and this type of attic needs to be avoided for storage. Large attics are designed specifically for storage sometimes. These special storage attics can be great but make sure to inspect them for unwanted moisture, leaky pipes, and pests. If an attic has unprotected openings patch them over because open attic holes will attract spiders, bees, and birds.

Be extra cautious of storage places with water pipes routed in them. In very cold weather the pipes can leak water or even burst. Do not consider such areas like these when storing valuable collectibles.

If you can afford one, a private storehouse or warehouse is great for serious storage use. Other similar options might be considered like sheds or barns in good condition. Make sure they can be secured or locked up properly to prevent possible theft. Custom storage buildings and modules that are easy to build and prefabricated can also be considered a very good possible option if looking for your own private storage site.

The best place for storing valuables and collectibles is in your own residence. Many times there will be no need for overflow type of item storage. Be sure though, if you need to store collectible items outside of your home to have a well thought out and secure place to use. Always use the best methods you can to store any valuable items, and in time this will bring you much better results in the long run.

collecting | do_it_yourself

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