FAQ: Trading and Collecting
Do you sell your custom figures?
No. There are four reasons why.
- I put so much time and attention into most of my customs that I simply want to keep them.
- Some of my customs are "miracles of the moment." In other words, I really donít know if I could pull it off again.
- If I did sell my custom figures, my prices would probably seem too high. I would really only be charging for my time and the cost of the figures needed for parts. However, most people would just think I was greedy if I charged $50 for a customized figure. I donít want to seem greedy.
- If I donít have a license with Lucasfilm, it is illegal to sell figures that are based on Star Wars characters. I donít want to risk my site being shut down.
Do you trade your custom figures?
On very rare occasions, I will offer a custom figure on my Trade List. This will only happen when I am redoing a figure and I no longer want the old one.
What do the words "POTF2", "POTJ", "EP I", etc., mean?
What do the words "c-9," "loose," "MOC," and "complete" on your trade list mean?
They all refer to the condition of a figure and its packaging. The overall condition of the figure and its packaging is rated from 0 to 10, with a c-10 being in absolute mint condition and a c-0 being a formless lump that in no way resembles what it once was. Factors affecting condition of figures may be paint wear, discoloration, or damage (for example, breaking). Some factors affecting condition of packaging may be tearing, creasing, discoloration, or water damage. Much like a new car when taken off the lot, an item removed from its packaging automatically depreciates and can be no better than c-9.5.
Loose items are those that have been removed from their original packaging. Items still in their original packaging are described as MIB (mint in box) or MOC (mint on card). The condition of the card or box may then be described using the condition scale. For example, an original Luke figure that is still enclosed in the plastic bubble on the card, with some minor damage to the card, would be described as: Original Luke (MOC, c-8).
Complete items have all of their accessories (capes, guns, etc.). Conversely, an item which is missing any of its accessories is incomplete.
How can I find out about the accessories that come with figures and ships?
There are several resources for finding out what accessories are supposed to come with Star Wars toys:
- For vintage figures, check 12back.com.
- To find out about accessories for larger toys like playsets or ships, check out The Star Wars Toy Resource Page.
- For POTF2 and Episode I stuff, check Rebelscum.com.
- A great hard-copy book is Tomart's Price Guide to Worldwide Star Wars Collectibles (available for purchase at the Tomart website), which has pictures of each figure and its accessories.
Erik, where did you get all your vintage stormtroopers?
I bought most of them from people who advertised in a publication called Toy Shop. This was back in 1995 and 1996 before buying and selling over the Internet really took off. I believe the Toy Shop is still in existence.
Have you had any bad trading experiences?
Yes. I've had two.
- The first was with Daniel Lebowitz. When he contacted me in 1996, his e-mail address was firstname.lastname@example.org. Here's his mailing address (NOTE: this information is publicly available at www.whitepages.com):
Daniel S. Lebowitz
1428 Parkview Dr
Lyndhurst, OH 44124
This trade was agreed to back in November of 1996. I sent Daniel his half of the trade, but my half did not arrive when expected. After sending Daniel repeated e-mails for several months, I eventually received my half of the deal six months late. If you have any questions about this trade, e-mail me.
- The second bad deal was with Shannon Vickers. Here's his information:
3001 Poolside Dr.
Greenacres, FL 33463
The trade was agreed to back in April of 1999. I sent Shannon his half of the trade, and he even wrote back to me saying how much he enjoyed it. Then Shannon fell off the face of the earth, ignoring my repeated e-mails, in which I stated that I hadnít received what was owed to me. To this date, I have not received my end of the deal. I suspect Shannon Vickers is not this personís real name. If you have any information on Shannon Vickers, please e-mail me.
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