Counterfeiting Tool – Serial Number Machine

Some people will do anything to try and make a card look real.  That includes spending a nice chunk of $$$$ on a machine that can make serial numbers for you.  These machines usually are used for making business cards, crafts , and various other things, but there are a lot of counterfeiters that use these machines to place their own serial numbering on cards.  Sometimes it can be hard for a counterfeiter to get the exact font that a major card company uses, so the best thing you can do is compare the card you are thinking of buying with another to see if the numbering matches up.  Its also not a good sign if you look at the seller’s feedback and see they bought something like this.

SP Authentic Patches – A Counterfeiter’s Dream

Upper Deck SP Authentic is one of the most popular brands of cards for baseball, basketball, and football card collectors.  They have some of the best patch cards that the hobby has ever seen.  Just take a look:

That is an awesome looking card.  The signature is on card and the patch is multi-colored.  Although these cards look really nice, counterfeit card makers love this product.  Wanna know why?  Its because Upper Deck numbers these cards so high.  If you have ever seen a fake patch card for sale, the sellers usually number a patch very high.  You have to be very careful when buying SP Authentic patch cards.  Since the real patch cards are numbered high and the fake cards could also be numbered high it can be hard to determine which is real.  What some counterfeiters will do is buy a one color patch version of a card for little money, and then they will insert a fake multi-colored patch to make it more valuable.  Check the seller’s feedback to see if they have recently purchased a card like the one you are planning to buy.  One of the best ways to avoid a fake patch card is to buy one that is graded and/or certified.  SP Authentic patch cards are some of the coolest, and trickiest cards to buy.  Good luck!!!   

Choose your grader wisely

If you are new to collecting it can be very confusing when you see all the different grading companies.  Personally, I only trust a few of them: PSA, SGC, and BGS.  You will see other companies such as GEM, Pro, WCG, etc……  Companies such as those are not very reliable and have been known to have a hand in taking part in the largest counterfeiting ring of all time.  GEM grading will give almost any card that comes through the front door a 10.  If you took that card to BGS it would proabably get a 7 or 8.  Many of these second rate graders have even accepted money for giving cards higher grades.  PSA, SGC, and BGS are the best grading companies in the world.  It is very hard for a counterfeit card to get slabbed by them.  Just because a grading company is cheaper doesn’t make it better.

Sellers Using Photoshop To Manipulate Cards

There are a lot of low sellers trying to take advantage of people.  People have found a way to use Photoshop to make cards look better than they really are.  They scan a picture of a card and then they use Photoshop to slightly crop the card to make it appear that it has smooth edges and sharp corners.  This is usually done with vintage cards since they are the ones that most likely aren’t in the best condition.  Here is an example,  below is a picture of a vintage baseball card with round corners.

Here is that same card after cropping it a little. 

As you can see the second picture makes the card appear to be in better condition when it really isn’t.  When deciding to purchase a card whether in person or online it is better to buy a vintage card that is graded and/or certified.  If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Watch Out For Those Refractor Colors

Refractors have become one of the most collected types of cards in the hobby today.  Since they were introduced in 1993 Topps Finest baseball cards, many collectors have become hooked on finding those rare refractors of their favorite players. 

When purchasing a refractor over the internet you should be very careful.  There are a lot of different levels of refractors that have different numbering.  It is important that you know which colors have what numbering.  For example, Bowman Chrome Gold Refractors are numbered to 50, Reds are numbered to 5 or 1 etc…….  It really depends what set you are looking at.  When a seller takes a photo or scans a card that is a refractor the computer can sometimes make the card look like a different color than what it really is.  Sometimes a gold refractor can look orange, and a plain refractor can look blue.  The difference in these colors can really increase or decrease the price of the card.  This is why you should do your research before buying.  You should find out the different numbering of the refractors from a particular set before purchasing online.  There are people out there that will try to pass off a gold for and orange just to make more money.  Please be careful.

Are You Sure That Card Is A 1/1 Don’t Be Fooled!!!!!!!

Pulling a card out of a pack that is numbered 1/1 can be one of the highest momments of a collectors life.  Just knowing that you beat the odds is exciting enough but now you have a card that is the only one like it in the world.  Cards that are numbered 1/1 can hold a large value which is why people try and make a non 1/1 numbered card into a 1/1 card.  People have found a lot of creative ways in which they will take a high numbered card or low numbered card and say that it is a 1/1. I have created this guide to inform people on how to stay away from cards that say they are 1/1 but aren’t.  Below is a list of the many ways people create a 1/1 card that isn’t a 1/1:

  • Jersey Number – Say a card is numbered 10/100.  The seller could say that the card is a 1/1 because the player’s jersey number is 10 and thats the only one like it.
  • First One Made – People may say that a card is a 1/1 because it was the first one made.  For example, a card numbered 1/100.
  • Last One Made – People may say that a card is a 1/1 because it was the last one one made.  For example, a card numbered 100/100.
  • Statistic – Someone may claim a card is a 1/1 because the number matches a statistic from their career.  For example, height, weight, birthday, debut, etc…
  • Math – By doing addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division people may claim a card is a 1/1 because just by doing math and using the numbers the answer may match up with the players birthday, jersey number, or statistic from their career.  For example, a card numbered 12/20 being considered a 1/1 because 12 + 20 = 32, and 32 is the player’s jersey number.
  • Only One They Have Seen – Some people may say a card is a 1/1 because it is the only one that they have seen.
  • High Grade – Cards have been considered 1/1 because the seller thinks that it would get a high grade.

    As you can see people have become very creative when taking a non 1/1 card and trying to turn it into a 1/1 card.  I hope this guide will help you avoid these people that are selling cards like this.  The only way a card can be a 1/1 is if it is stamped or written on by the company it was made from.  People are always coming up with new ways to consider cards to be 1/1.  Please be careful when buying a card that the seller says is a 1/1.  Read the description carefully and check the sellers feedback and you should be just fine.