After I got back into the Hobby, I started buying some wax boxes from my childhood. My local card shop has a great selection of baseball, football and hockey wax from the late 80s and early 90s. These are great for collectors since they are inexpensive and very abundant. I started out with a couple of boxes of 1988 and 1989 Topps baseball. Opening the wax packs, brought all of memories from childhood back to me. From here, it made sense to build these sets.
1989 Topps Baseball
This is an important set to me. This is where it all began with a few packs given to me by my mom in the summer of 1989. As a little boy, the colorful pictures and stick of gum in each pack hooked me from the start. It made sense that this would be the 1st set that I would build as an adult. This was an easy set to build. I ended up buying 2 cello boxes and a wax box. I made sure each card was mint and free of wax and/or gum stains. I love the iconic card design of 89 Topps, with the team name written in LA Dodger type script. This set is loaded with stars from the 80s; Gwynn, Sandberg, Ripken etc. Also, this set has a great rookies crop; HOFers Smoltz, Johnson, and Biggio.
1980 Topps Baseball – set complete April, 2018; 726 cards – 723 raw, 3 graded
The next set that I wanted to build was 1980 Topps baseball. This set is important to me since its my birth year. I knew that this would be a long-term project and much tougher to complete since I couldn’t simply buy wax boxes. I wanted each card to be at least in excellent condition and have decent eye appeal. The big card in this set is the rookie card of HOFer, Rickey Henderson. I purchased this one already graded in a PSA 7. I bought a vendor box from my LCS that helped with the start of the build. Then it was small lots found on ebay, a random cello pack and single card purchases from card shows.
1988 Topps Baseball – set complete
This was another set from my early collecting years. While this set isn’t at the top of everyone’s list, it’s full of nostalgia for me. Along with 89 Topps, these were the first packs I opened as a kid. Isn’t it funny how certain card images stick with you all of these years later? For me, its Jimmy Key hanging out in the dugout. This was also easy set to complete. In total, I purchased 1 rack pack box, cello box and a wax box.
1984 Topps Baseball – set complete July 2020; 792 cards – 790 raw, 2 graded
This was a fun set to put together. 84 Topps is one of my favorite sets from the 1980s. With the selection of stars and rookies and the overall design of both front and back of the cards, this set is up there. I opened a bunch of rack packs and wax packs for the initial build. Then I filled in the gaps with a vending box and some trades. The final three cars were purchased at my LCS.
The following sets are ones that I am currently working on. I try to build as much as I can through boxes and packs. This makes it more personal of a build. With older sets, I looks for lots, purchase stacks at shows or make trades with collectors in the hobby.
1987 Topps – (need 1 card) – built through packs
1986 Topps – (need 17 cards) – built through packs
1974 Topps – 510/678 (75.2% complete)
Waiting on deck: