Since moving to Madison, Wisconsin nearly four years ago my card collecting hobby went from casual to hoarding. In a strange city with plenty of free time I jumped back in the hobby with weekly trips to Target for retail blaster boxes. Then Craigslist browsing for bigger collections.
Not only did I have more retail options in the larger city, two card shops call Madison home. I moved from Macomb, Illinois where the Wal-Mart was not well stocked with baseball cards, and the nearest card shop was nearly 90 minutes away.
The two card shops in Madison are about five minutes apart, and offer a much different experience for collectors. The Baseball Card Shoppe is in a nicer mini mall, though it neighbors a bunch of vacant spaces. It’s stocked with wax including a huge supply of junk wax. Unfortunately the 1990’s wax is still priced at 1990’s prices and it appears 99% of it is in the same shelf space it was when I first walked in the place four years ago. The Baseball Card Shoppe does keep up to date on all of the new releases with a great selection of recent wax. They are my go to for a quick hobby box fix.
Jim’s is tucked away in an older corner building on the near west side of Madison. It’s fairly disorganized, which gives it a lot of character. Jim doesn’t stock very much wax, but does keep up with the latest sets and singles. His wax prices and supplies are slightly lower than the Baseball Card Shoppe. He also had a cool selection of memorabilia and older magazines.
This past Sunday I wanted to get my One Million Cubs Project closer to organized and have run out of storage boxes to properly get this project started. I have plenty of storage boxes, but there’s been a lot of transferring as I sort so a few fresh monster boxes was on the agenda.
Normally I buy storage supplies in bulk, though monster boxes in bulk are very close to hobby shop prices. The last 25-count monster box buy ran me $80 (about $3.20 per box). The Baseball Card Shoppe has them for $3.99. I will gladly pay the extra dollar per box for convenience and more importantly it having to put the boxes together (for obvious reasons all of the pieces are shipped flat).
I bought four monster boxes which will give me a good start with the recent trades that have been sitting in the trade boxes that have been in my mailbox. One surprise was a couple boxes appeared to be unsorted. These boxes may have come on a busy day and I never got around to looking through them. Surely I would have remembered a stack of Ty Griffin Oddball cards. I’ve loosely collected Griffin over the past two decades and this stack included a couple new ones in my collection.
My initial goal is to get all of my Cubs accounted for in 5,000 count monster boxes and give them proper shelf space. Then I can continue cataloging them in my spreadsheet and eventually get them further sorted into player and set collections.
Another idea I have is to put the player collections in nice binders (Baseball Card Shoppe has them for about $5) and maybe find a book shelf to display them. At this point my goal is to hoard more Cubs cards (trade me your Cubs!) and set them in the monster boxes.