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#279025 - 12/06/03 04:51 AM Great post on light source exposure to graded cards
estang
(S)uper Collector


Registered: 11/15/02
Posts: 496

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I found this thread on the PSA message board about an experiment that was done on the affect of light source (natural/artificial) exposure to PSA slabs over a 90 day period. The results are extremely interesting.

Light Exposure Experiment on PSA Slabs

I keep my SGC / BVG cards and some autographed baseballs on a mounted shelf around the top of my office walls. In essence they are exposed to artificial light 1/2 day (2 60 watt bulbs with a frosted glass shade on ceiling light) and the wood blinds are kept closed ~90 percent of the time, as I'm cognitive of the affect of any direct sunlight. I haven't noticed any problems, but this has me genuinely concerned. I enjoy keep the cards 'on display' 24/7, and the thought of keeping them in boxes is disappointing. I've had this shelving system up for about 1 year. I haven't noticed any fading problems.

I inquired to SGC about their UV protection when I built my shelving and received a response that they should be fine in artifical light, but it wouldn't be good to keep them in direct sunlight. I don't recall any definitive statement from SGC on the UV technology of the plastic or any concrete information. I'm going to contact them again.

All the major card grading companies should be using UV protection in their plastic casings. It doesn't appear that PSA is given the results. Does SGC? Does BVG? I'd surmise that they don't. If they did, you think it would be noted.

Your comments, especially with the affect and any technology information on the SGC slabs are welcome.


_________________________
Enjoy Your Collection & SKOL VIKINGS!

Erik

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#279026 - 12/06/03 07:02 AM Re: Great post on light source exposure to graded cards [Re: estang]
aconte
Bid more or post more... tough one...


Registered: 02/22/02
Posts: 1896
Loc: On The Beach....where else!

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That was a great and interesting thread to read. I do not keep any high end cards
in my display cases for fear of sun and light exposure. I've been thinking
about using one of my closets to display some red man cards. Most though are tucked away at my bank in safety deposit boxes. I guess I display them on the
set registry. And I do doubt that any holders protect from light or sun.

aconte
_________________________

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#279027 - 12/06/03 08:27 AM Re: Great post on light source exposure to graded cards [Re: aconte]
vayank
The Amazing Card-Man


Registered: 04/13/02
Posts: 948
Loc: Alexandria, Va

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It's Deja Vu All Over Again

I think UV protected slabs are a great idea, though all collectors may not be as exacting as we.
_________________________
---- Matthew T. Natale Alexandria, Virginia Completed 1977 Topps Baseball SGC Graded Set, Average Grade 92.89

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#279028 - 12/07/03 08:30 AM Re: Great post on light source exposure to graded cards [Re: vayank]
estang
(S)uper Collector


Registered: 11/15/02
Posts: 496

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Deja' Vu indeed. I did contact Sean again to get the skinny on whether the SGC plastic is UV protected or not, and made him aware of my post here (in case he wants to address the forum).

I believe UV protected plastic is essential in the product strategy for a company in the business of grading cards. I think it is fair to say that the benefits or value proposition to the consumer on getting trading cards graded by a 3rd party, "professional" company are (in this order):

1) Accuracy of grade
2) Preservation of card

Preservation of the card may be attained by:

1. Having a sturdy plastic that is not easily cracked
2. Keeping the card in place that minimizes movement and pressure on edges/corners
3. Reduces the light exposure to the card to prevent fading and color loss

The next most important factor to a consumer when getting a card graded is the aethestics of the holder. I don't think most of us here would say this is more important than accuracy of grade and preservation of card, but it would be next in line.

So how do you preserve the card, keep your consistency in grading and do it with minimizing the aethestics of the holder, your finished product? A tough question that keeps the executives at the major companies up a night.

The good thing about UV protected plastic is that it would not alter the look of their finished product. It would enhance the preservation of the card and do so in a transparent manner. A no brainer, right?

My point to Sean at SGC was that if your holders aren't UV protect now, when you go back to your supplier for more holders, request the plastic to be UV protected. How they want to market this enhancement to their product is up to them and would depend upon what the competition is already doing. For example, if no one else has UV protected plastic in their holders, then SGC would do well to boast this as a benefit of their product to the competition. If others do, then they should still do it and be subtle in how to present it. Irregardless, if they don't have UV now and do so in the future, they need to ensure that there is a way to distinguish this on their product. The serial number of the label seems the best way to do so.

Nevertheless, I find this interesting and so should the management at the grading card companies. They all need to be implementing on a market-focused strategy that fills an unmet need in the marketplace (profitably, of course). Therefore, adapting and change is imminent.










_________________________
Enjoy Your Collection & SKOL VIKINGS!

Erik

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#279029 - 12/07/03 08:47 AM Re: Great post on light source exposure to graded cards [Re: estang]
srs1a
Old, dense-headed hammers are cool. Best nail pounders.


Registered: 08/15/02
Posts: 987
Loc: NY

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Estang, great post and I agree 100%. I sometimes wonder if there isn't more to "card preservation" than just UV protection. Personally, my cards are stored on boxes, so I'm not too worried about UV protection, but I agree it is important and should definately be baked into the plastic.

My question is are all of the components of the holder (black insert, plastic holder, and label) of archival quality? That is, is everyone comfortable that through normal aging of the slab, that no nasty (solvent-based, or not) gases are coming out of the various parts of holder and doing damage to the card? Some plastics are archival quality, some are not...some papers are archival quality, some are not. I'm not exactly sure what the black insert is made up of, so am very curious on this one. I'm positive that the card itself was not made using acid-free (archival) paper, so I think that this may increase its sensitity to other environmental factors.

Sean, I'd love to hear you comments on this matter.

Scott

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#279030 - 12/08/03 07:42 AM Re: Great post on light source exposure to graded cards [Re: srs1a]
Sean_C
Hobbyist


Registered: 10/17/03
Posts: 54

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There was also an interesting test regarding the effects of heat on a card holder as well:

Effects of extreme heat (IE the trunk of a car on a hot day) on PSA and SGC holders by Virtualizard

I beginning to wonder how hot the inside of my safe can get...
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Apt reading.

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