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 "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???

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coachk28
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PostSubject: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:19 pm

The Thread of all Threads!!! Hope to get some good discussion out of this one!!!

The following is taken from the web site of the AFA (Action Figure Authority)....

UNCIRCULATED: Items which meet certain criteria will be assigned the designation of uncirculated. A packaged item sent to us in an unopened factory case or sleeve or a loose item sent to us in a factory sealed blister, box, or heat sealed bag* will receive this designation. You can then be certain that the item has never been handled nor circulated within the retail or collectible market. Packaged toys with double-tape or other characteristics which would normally disqualify them from receiving a grade, and loose items with incorrect or missing accessories can be assigned a grade with the uncirculated designation. All items assigned this designation are graded using the same scale and under the same standards as other items.
*Items must be removed from heat-sealed factory bags to be assured an uncirculated designation. Items from tape-sealed bags will only be assigned an uncirculated designation when an item is commonly found in this type of bag and our graders feel certain about the tape seal. In these cases, the inclusion of the designation will be at our sole discretion.

"U" Grading carded items as really taken off in the last year! Whether it is modern or vintage, more and more people seem to want their figures ripped from their cards in order to receive the coveted Uncirculated grade.

Many collectors love it!!! Others can not stand it!!! I for one am on the fence, and can see where both sides of the argument are coming from.

Part of me is for it, because I... like some collectors want to assemble a full line of U graded vintage Kenner Star Wars action figures. Why do I want them U graded? My reason isn't very solid.... its just my personal preference to have a collection of mint, untouched vintage Star Wars figures.

On the other hand, I am also against the U grading for the same reason. Compared to what other people have, my loose Star Wars action figure collection is very small, and wont grow much further beyond the 100 or so released figures and major variants. Some collectors on the other hand (many of them can be found on Rebelscum) want to monopolize the collecting hobby and want everything!!! Many of these collectors are the ones that will rip dozens of figures from their cards in order to have multiples of every possible figure and variant, or will ruin multiple carded figures in hopes to get that loose U90 or U95. Hording like that I am totally against!!!

So for those of us that are trying to collect carded figures, keep holding on to them and take good care of them! If the U grading sensation continues to grow, then the carded figures that we have will only become more scarce and cherished!!!

I am already aware of many of your opinions on this matter, but I would love for TIGF members to chime in on this topic!!!

Looking forward to reading your posts!!!

Coachk28
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:37 pm

Againsttttttttttttttttttttttt!

Fucking terrible idea when there are so many equally nice ALREADY LOOSE figures out there to find and grade.

U90 and 90 are the same!

I would much rather spend $400-600 on a piece of pre production and know it was really rare than spend it on a figure that exists in multiples of thousands just because it has a letter U on a sticker in an acrylic box.

It was an idea purely based on greed and money making, I don't care for arguments against that statement as there aren't any.

- U grading takes cheaper collectibles away from younger/less wealthy collectors - TRUE
- U grading destroys packaged collectibles that have lasted 30 years - TRUE
- U grading is GREAT for dealers to make insane money out of people who crave for U grades - TRUE

Apart from dealers getting richer and AFA getting richer - what is the benefit of U grading ?

I would like to end my post with saying - the only awesome thing to come out of U grading is that when AFA is dead, when people no longer collect "U" , the U90 collectors who have paid and are paying hundreds of dollars for run of the mill figures with a high grade will be surrounded by the most over priced and worthless collections in the world. (which is a bit of a shame but these guys won't be told ! We have tried!)


Last edited by Joe_O on Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:39 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:38 pm

I have read a post like this one before on RS and it got a harsh response. Where most people where against the opening of carded or sealed figures as its another lost carded figure etc. To a certain extent I would agree with that statement. I would hate to guess how many figures are removed from the cards on a daily basis. But the number of carded figures will be dropping and dropping.

I only think its ok if the owner truly wants to. As he is the owner of the piece after all and that gives them the right to do what they want.

I would resist it all the time if I could.
But if something was battered and say a 60 rated card and the figure may grade at a U90. Then I would if neded send the figure to be U graded.

Everyone is different and has different opinions. But that is mine

Andy
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:43 pm

Have never done it myself and don't like the way they display, but don't have a massive problem with it Wink

That is for carded figures, as for boxed ships, mini rigs and cretures. i'm dead against it Evil or Very Mad

At least with a figure you can see the potential grade, with a vehicle you have no clue and may have destroyed for no reason Evil or Very Mad Evil or Very Mad Evil or Very Mad

Although I do agree on most points with Joe!

To sum it up I would not buy a U grade figure or grade one myself.
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:44 pm

Like I said... I'm on both sides...

But I couldn't agree with you more Joe!!! Perfectly said!!!
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 4:59 pm

Someone paid like $300-400 (or more I can't remember) for a U90 Death star droid.

Now, ok that figure is a huge pain to get in nice condition, and it was the only U90 ever graded but really.. that figure in about a C8 is like $15 at the most.

If you push yourself you can get one C8-9 and perfectly acceptable as displayable for like $40 or so (yeah even that seems pricey but if you want mint its hard to find)

So, to pay $400 for a C9 $40 figure, an acrylic box (what $20 tops??) and a little label is really quite crazy.
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:05 pm

I think Joe has pretty much hit the nail on the head, U grade things out of factory sealed shipping boxes YES! U grade MOC's and MISB stuff NO!
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:09 pm

Sleep
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:10 pm

Hahaahahah!!!

Tell us how you really feel about the subject Josh!!!

lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol!
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:16 pm

I think he just did! :I am stupid:
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:22 pm

He's been there and done it, he must be getting old because he has run out of steam to argue Laughing

To be fair I wasn't going to reply, its nothing against you coach its just the topic has been thrashed on all forums I have been on, I do however still feel strongly about it and although I hardly pick up the pitch fork on the other forums I wanted to at least have one rage post on TIG Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:24 pm

It was about time this forum got its own U-grading thread. celebrate celebrate celebrate celebrate celebrate
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:25 pm

LOL Joe! too true smoke
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:28 pm

No offense taken!!!

I've seen similar threads on other forums, and have talked to other Gunnery members about it.

I'm sure many of you have already beaten this topic to death.

But with all the new members, me included.... its nice to see what people feel about the topic!!!!!
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:32 pm

doh
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 5:34 pm

What Josh?
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 6:13 pm

The forum is new yes Smile the people on here aren't!

Now someone post that dead horse getting flogged pic already lol!
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 6:16 pm

What more can be said about the U grade? It destroys carded figures, even if the are beaters just for a letter. Now, if its a cut card, that might be a different story all together. I'd rather buy those for a mint figure than rip one from a whole card, but AFA still wont touch it. I don't need someone to tell me how a figure rates.
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Sun Jan 03, 2010 7:42 pm

When it was found out that a U grade collector was not only sending beaters in but was in fact buying up already graded MOC figures to get at U90 figures for his own collection and resale it was time to write in- Here is my entry (Useless of course as AFA replied - "Educate the collectors to send in cards of lesser condition")

Quote :
To whom it may concern,

In light of a recent discovery on the rebelscum forums I am writing to you to
show my lack of support for the "U" grading scale that you currently offer for Vintage Star Wars
figures.

It has been made public that some customers of yours are not only sending
in quite respectable pieces to be opened but are now sacrificing already
graded MOC with a high figure subgrade in order to gain a high "U" graded
loose figure.

I personally feel this is quite threatening to the hobby that many collectors enjoy.

I am writing to ask for some kind of reasoning (other than money) as to why
you accept submissions for loose grades on items that are NOT considered
to have MAJOR flaws ( card rips,cracked bubbles, water damage etc)

There are many more people that feel the same way as me and I presume you will
be getting some emails about the same subject from different collectors.

From your population reports we can see that almost 3,000 MOC and bagged figures
have been sent in and "U" graded for coveted high grades. If this were to carry on, before long
you will have helped to completely change the vintage star wars collecting community for the worse.

In offering this service you allow wealthier collectors to buy up and destroy a
considerable amount of figures that would otherwise be bought by new collectors
or people with less money to spend on collectibles, its not fair and it shows you have no respect for
the items you are grading.

Take a moment to focus your attention elsewhere, there are many other services you could offer that
would appeal to collectors who truely want to preserve and display figures graded by the AFA, if I were
to highlight one in particular it would be to better train your graders to be able to spot and identify reproduction
weapons, part of the reason why some collect "U" grades is that people can't count on you 100% of the time to grade
figures correctly that are already loose and instead send in figures straight off the cards.


Joe O
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Mon Jan 04, 2010 1:27 am

I used to be of the opinion if theyre beaters then why not, however what you should be doing is storing them beaters for another 10yrs or so - the price can only climb Wink
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Mon Jan 04, 2010 7:54 am

The U Grade Debate on RS

Many of my thoughts and feelings on the subject can be seen in that thread.

What i will say is many people at the time of the debate kicking off said the collect U Grades as its the only way to know the weapons / items are genuine. This was one of the reasons we set up The Imperial Gunnery Websites as we wanted people to know they didnt have to go the AFA or U Grade route just to know something was real.

Jay
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:56 am

Had some good talk with Joe O about all of this yesterday. He should me the same thread!!!!

I had no idea it was getting to the point where people were cracking open MOC AFA Graded figures in order to find a U90 or U95 loose graded figure!!!

That is just totally wrong!!!

As I complete or look to upgrade figures in my loose AFA figure collection... it is safe to say I will NOT get a U85 or U90. I don't want to fuel someone like Rulairs reasoning to continue such horrible actions!!!!
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Mon Jan 04, 2010 11:53 am

Looks like we are official now with a U grade thread. lol!

I never had a problem with basic AFA grading in general. I've never collected graded items and never will, but I can see the market for it. However, the whole U thing is just ridiculous. As has been said there are plenty of excellent condition loose figures out there to go around. There is no need to start ripping open packages/baggies for them. To me there is no difference between a 85 and a U85. In the end they are both loose figures and if someone cracked open the cases, there would be no difference between them. There is a limited supply of carded/baggies and once they are gone that's it.
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Mon Jan 04, 2010 12:20 pm

It got real bad when they started U grading mini-rigs and creatures. To me thats when it turned into an obsession than a collection. I think it was said before, but it will be a sad day in collecting they they decided to U grade the mini cataloges and paper work to have a complete set of U grades for a vehichle.
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PostSubject: Re: "U" Grading... Love it, or hate it???   Mon Jan 04, 2010 12:27 pm

What about U grading the weapon/survival packs???
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