31 October 2016

Click Here to View Cart 17: A Box of 2016 BBM True Heart Wrestling Cards

For a Halloween post there are plenty of trading cards I could post featuring people in costumes. There are comic book cards with their caped superheroes, wrestling cards with their spandex-clad personalities, movie and film cards with a wide range of characters, and even sports cards with their colorful uniforms and equipment. Today I am going to feature some of the most colorful wrestling cards around.

One of my favorite US-based card shops, The Puroresu Central Shop, deals specifically in Japanese wrestling collectibles. I've picked up some very cool things from them, including a very rare figure (from a series of wrestling figures I haven't shown here yet) and several autographed cards for my various player collections. They recently posted on Twitter that they had one box of the 2016 BBM True Heart Women's Pro Wrestling cards available in the shop. I wasn't sure whether or not it would be worth going after it, as I'd picked up a bulk lot or two of the autographs in the set and I've got plenty of base cards from the boxes I busted earlier in the year. The price was in the ballpark of what I'd spend to import a box on my own. I finally caved and placed my order. #YOLO

For the full review of this product, you can read my post from February, when I placed my initial order for a few boxes. For this post I am sticking with a handful of base cards and all the hits.

水波 綾 - Ryo Mizunami; 志田 光 - Hikaru Shida
雪妃真矢 - Maya Yukihi; KAZUKI
Collation is the worst part about this product. You get 140 cards in a box with about 5 of those spots being a hit. So 135 base cards should be enough to complete a set of 126 cards. Instead, the boxes consistently give out 110 / 126 cards, with around 25 doubles. Argh! #FirstWorldProblems

紫雷美央 - Mio Shirai
Most True Heart sets have a subset or two after going through all of the individual active wrestlers. Usually these include tag teams, Hall of Fame or wrestlers who retired the previous year, and modeling or casual photo shoot cards.

Here are four of the autographs I got in this box. They match up with the base cards I selected to scan. Often I will pull a wrestler who I don't know well, and I match up the autograph to the corresponding base card, then I use the checklist to search for their name on the internet. 

I didn't know who Maya Yukihi was, so I matched up her picture up with card # 106 on the pdf checklist from the BBM website. Having it in text form allows me to copy and paste the text directly instead of trying to find out how to type the characters, and a quick search (usually) takes me to something I can work with. Those numbers to the right are the print runs for various autographs. The leftmost column is the base autograph, the middle column is the special inscription autograph, and the right column is the Cheki, or Polaroid-type photos that are signed and labeled. The print runs can vary quite a bit, and not all wrestlers have all of the variations.

The backs are pretty standard, with the Certificate of Authenticity and the serial numbering. And now I know why Hikaru Shida wrote # 54 by her autograph on the front of the card. It's card # 54 / 85 in her print run. You can see that KAZUKI's card is extremely limited, as it is one of the special inscription cards. Each wrestler who did those only has 5 of them, and they are usually identifiable by the extra writing and different-colored ink.

Getting a limited # / 5 auto is pretty cool, but the Cheki photos are the biggest hits in the product. And I may have pulled the biggest one of all in Mio Shirai. I've mentioned before that the Shirai's (Mio and Io) are some of the most popular wrestlers around. Mio retired last year, but Io is still active. I've seen rumors that Io has an offer from WWE to join their ranks, along with another popular wrestler named Kairi Hojo. Io and Kairi don't have True Heart cards because they wrestle for a promotion called Stardom that doesn't have cards in the True Heart sets. Stardom recently (sometime in the last year or so) made their own trading card available in their international store, but they are expensive and shipping makes them even more so. I did buy one pack of them a while ago from an eBay seller, but I haven't posted them on the blog. Their brand emphasizes modeling more than other wrestling promotions, and the cards reflect that. They are one of the more English-friendly promotions out there, though. They have a video subscription service that has all of their shows, plus other video events, and every video has English subtitles. The other promotions don't have that, to my knowledge.

Back to the card, Mio Shirai doesn't have a # / 5 inscription card in this year's set, so this is her most limited card in the set. It's a pretty big deal. I guess it would be like an extremely limited farewell year hit of David Ortiz, to compare it to baseball.

The card shop's owner shut down the store a few months ago, citing a need to reorganize and decide what his plan for the future was. During the shutdown he contacted me and we discussed some of the sources for True Heart cards. I guess there aren't a lot of people collecting these cards, and he didn't want the knowledge to be lost if he decided not to reopen. One of the sources he uses is the same one I use, but my e-mails with him were what convinced me to try out the Buyee shopping service. He e-mailed me again after I purchased the box, expressing surprise that I had been the one to jump on it as I know how to get the cards elsewhere. He was a little remorseful about selling the cards when he heard what I had pulled, which I think would be the really hard thing about selling products for a hobby you enjoy. On the one hand, you get to earn money from something you enjoy. On the other hand, the things you enjoy can double as inventory, and you either don't make money because you hold onto everything of value or you have to watch cool stuff move on to new owners. I am glad that someone out there does it, but I would have a hard time owning a card shop just because I'd want to always be busting boxes of stuff and hoarding the cool singles that came through.

30 October 2016

Pack of the Day 145: One 2016 Panini Prizm NASCAR Blaster Box

I went to Target the other day on an errand, secretly hoping to find a blaster box of Panini's new 2016 Torque racing cards. I didn't find those, but I did pick up some Pokemon cards for my kids and a blaster of 2016 Panini Prizm NASCAR for me. My kids have begun to collect Pokemon cards, which is a pretty cool development. They've got binders and card sheets, and they enjoy sorting and flipping through their cards. We had to ban them from trading outside of the immediate family, though, as they have a cousin who was taking advantage of the younger kids. My eldest son even dug out his Cincinnati Bengals collection and spent some time going through those cards, so I am making some headway with them on the sports front. Hopefully the cardboard habit will mean they never have money for getting into drugs or other vices. The younger boys haven't picked favorite teams yet, but I imagine that once they do I will try to get a couple of card lots together for them.

Blasters of Prizm are kind of like blasters of Chrome. You don't get a whole lot of cards per box. One good thing about these Panini racing blasters is that they promise a hit per blaster. Nine times out of ten it's a relic of someone you've never heard of before, but I guess that's better than nothing. I am not really chasing anything here besides inserts, parallels, and the hit, as I picked up a complete set of Prizm recently from eBay.

I try to scan a couple of base cards any time I do a break post. I enjoy shiny cards and hits just as much as anyone, but I think the base cards deserve some limelight as well. The Kyle Busch card is a standard base card, while the Kyle Larson card belongs to the Driver Introductions subset. I think I chose that card because he's got the Target logo on his uniform and I bought the blaster at Target. I ought to give that Busch card to my son, as he was excited to rediscover some of the M&M's race car cards I gave him among his football collection.

I still miss the garish green and orange of the GoDaddy cars, but Danica Patrick's new Nature's Bakery colors are pretty nice-looking as well. I've got some pretty cool new Danica cards in-hand and on the way to me, so I'm looking forward to writing those posts. The Kevin Harvick card is part of the Champions subset.

I was disappointed about not pulling any of the colorful Prizm parallels, settling instead for three base Prizms and an SP Prizm of Mark Martin. I don't have the base SP of the Martin card, but this is the second Prizm version I've pulled. I've got it earmarked for Billy Kingsley of Cardboard History, as he's one of the most prominent NASCAR collectors on the blogosphere.

I was happy to pull a couple of inserts for drivers I collect, Danica Patrick and Dale Earnhardt Jr. The Danica is a Qualifying Times insert and the Dale card is a Prizm parallel of the die-cut Machinery insert. I didn't pull any of the die-cut inserts from the Hobby box I opened, so I was glad to make up for that here. In looking at that previous post, it appears that the Qualifying Times insert of Danica is a double.

Here are a couple more inserts. The Jimmie Johnson Raising the Flag insert is another die-cut card. Die-cut cards are still cool to me after all these years. I guess it takes me back to my 90's days as a card-collecting teenager. The Winner's Circle insert is pretty cool, as it features a card for each 2015 race winner. Other major sports just have too many events for this to be an option (although there are days when it seems like Topps NOW is trying to highlight every baseball game), but with 36 races in a season, it is pretty feasible to put out this sort of insert.

edit: I guess 2008 Upper Deck Documentary actually did put out a card for each game that each team played that season (so two cards per game played, one per team), in a behemoth 4,890-card checklist. The quality control was poor, though, so they didn't actually use pictures from the games in question or even pictures of players who had appeared in the card's featured game.

The promised hit of the box is a Landon Cassill autograph. This is the base level autograph. Cassill tends to run in the back half of the pack, with a 2016 average start of 31.6 and an average finish of 26.5. This isn't the most amazing hit in the world, but I was happy to get an autograph of a current full-time driver. Overall I was happy with the break.

Yesterday my wife and I went to see a local music theatre's presentation of The Little Mermaid. Musicals aren't usually my thing, but it was pretty good and my wife was happy that I agreed to go with her. I guess it counted as our anniversary date, as we are a couple of days away from our 12th anniversary.

29 October 2016

Thanks for All the Fish!

P-Town Tom over at the Waiting 'til Next Year blog has been cleaning house recently when it comes to his non-Cubs cards. One of his posts detailed how hard it has been to find a taker for his Florida/Miami Marlins extras. I am not a closet Marlins fan or anything, but there are plenty of players I follow who have passed through the team's roster at one point or another. I gave it a couple of days to give a real Marlins fan a chance to step up and claim the cards; then I posted a comment offering to take them off his hands. A little while later, a few hundred Marlins cards showed up in my mailbox. I didn't scan all of them, but I pulled a couple dozen to show here.

In my younger years I was almost exclusively a basketball and non-sports collector, with the occasional foray into football or baseball. I dropped out of card collecting almost entirely around 2000. Over the next decade or so, I picked up cards from trading card games like Magic, World of Warcraft, and WWE Raw Deal, but no sports cards. In 2008 I picked up most of a baseball set because my wife and I were having our first kid and I wanted to collect a full set of baseball cards from his birth year. My dog knocked the box containing Series 1 out of the box and peed on the pile of cards, so I've only got 2008 Topps Series 2 now. In 2013 I picked up card collecting again, this time going all-in on baseball and non-sports cards. I don't know exactly why I switched over from basketball to baseball, but that's how it worked out. I still gather cards for a couple of player collections in basketball and football, but those sports are pretty far down the list in comparison with baseball, Star Wars, comics, NASCAR, wrestling, and UFC.

The main point of all that text is to say that I missed out on nearly a decade worth of card sets and designs, and the 2000's were full of card sets. This lot was a great chance to look at many of the sets I missed out on over those years. That first scan really contains some cool stuff, like Upper Deck Ionix, Topps Stars, and Fleer Metal Universe. I remember the basketball versions of some of these sets, but a lot of them were new to me. Even though I was out of collecting for many years, I still played fantasy sports pretty heavily. Many of the guys in this lot spent time on my fantasy rosters, like Josh Beckett, Juan Pierre, and Hanley Ramirez. 

P-Town Tom would probably like to see his Cubs re-enacting the scene pictured on the first card in this scan, as the Marlins celebrate a victory over the Indians in the World Series. The Cubs have an uphill battle, though, as they dropped Game 3 and fell behind 2-1.

A.J. Burnett found his way onto quite a few of my fantasy rosters, as he usually piled up a decent number of innings and strikeouts. There is plenty of awesome shiny foil in this group, and a cool farewell-type card for Andre Dawson, whose time in Miami wasn't exactly the highlight of his Hall of Fame career. He also missed the Marlins' 1997 World Series run by one year.

Future Yankee Miguel Cabrera has piled up so many stats with the Tigers that I sometimes forget he was a Marlin. He even won a championship in Florida. Mike/Giancarlo Stanton is the current face of the franchise, and he's got the contract to match his status. Jake Marisnick is currently a defensive specialist for my Houston Astros, but his bat hasn't kept up and I don't think he's the answer as a full-time guy. We'll never see the full extent of Jose Fernandez' talents, as he died in a boating accident last month.

The box of Marlins also included this nice Hanley Ramirez Clubhouse Collection relic card from 2009 Topps Heritage. It's got a pinstripe and unlike most relic cards of today, it even has some text and a cartoon on the back.

In addition to the Marlins cards, P-Town Tom included some PC cards of famous Mariners. I don't add to these player collections very frequently on my own, so it is always pleasant to have them show up in a package.

I think that bubble gum card in the center is one of the more famous baseball card photos out there, and I am glad to finally have a copy of it. There is plenty of other cool stuff here, too, including a couple of father/son cards and a representative from the ever-cool Collector's Choice brand.

Even though the Marlins are not at the top of my favorite teams list, there was plenty of stuff in this package to entertain me. There were a lot of familiar names for me to reminisce on, and a lot of unfamiliar card designs for me to discover. The only part that I dread is the sorting, as I've found in my big sorting project that big player or team lots are time-consuming to process just because you're jumping around from year to year and brand to brand instead of just collating a big block of cards from the same set.

Thanks for all the fish, P-Town Tom! I know this was a no-obligations offer, but I will try to gather a few cards to send back in your direction.

28 October 2016

Topps NOW - Year of the Colon

Apparently 2016 was The Year of the Colon for me, as I picked up several of Bartolo Colon's Topps NOW cards throughout the 2016 season. There are actually even a few I am missing, which seems crazy for a guy who isn't exactly a superstar.

2016 Topps NOW # 315 - Print Run: 741
He appeared on 6 total cards in the regular season set (46, 57, 270, 315, 360, and 396) and one Postseason card (NYM-11), for a total of 7 Topps NOW cards. Most players didn't even get one card, let alone seven, but most players aren't rotund hurlers with legendarily zany plate appearances, either. His everyman appearance and his highlight/lowlight reel make him a fan favorite of sorts, and probably perfect for multiple cards in this print-on-demand set. I've discussed before my wishy-washy internal conflict about collecting the cards of a guy who has been suspended for PED usage and sued for allegedly failing to pay child support for his mistress' children, but in the end I've allowed myself to look past that stuff and enjoy his on-field exploits. I am not too worried one way or the other about the PED case, but I do hope that he is doing right by all of his kids. The facts surrounding the child support case aren't public as far as I know, so I can't fairly judge him one way or the other. Ideally, every child would be raised in a good environment by loving parents, but most families have some kind of complications.

Although Colon is a pitcher by trade, several of his NOW cards have focused on his batting. The big one was his first home run, which really put Topps NOW on the map and sold a whopping 8,826 copies. a number that was only surpassed by the card printed for Ichiro's 3,000th hit a couple of months later. His HR card's print run is still almost 3,600 more than the 3rd place card, which features Yankees rookies Tyler Austin and Aaron Judge after hitting back-to-back home runs in their first major-league at-bats. He also got a card for drawing the first walk of his career in the same season as he hit his first home run, after a record 282 plate appearances without drawing a free pass. This one was a lot less popular than the HR card, though with only 1,120 copies printed.

2016 Topps NOW # 396 - Print Run: 492
This card is a little bit hokey, but by the time card #396 came around Topps knew that Bartolo Colon NOW cards were like free money for the taking. Colon had his first multi-hit game since 2002, and Topps went ahead and commemorated the event with a card. This one was a little less popular with collectors and only pulled in 492 ordered copies.

2016 Topps NOW # 57 - Print Run: 8,826
There are three Bartolo Colon Topps NOW cards that I do not have in my collection. The first one, 2016 Topps NOW #46, is the most rare of the bunch. It came before the popular home run card and has a print run of just 298. It is currently the most expensive of Colon's NOW cards on eBay. As far as subject matter, it highlight's Colon's 220th win, surpassing Pedro Martinez on the all-time wins list.

His other regular season card that I don't own is card #270, which shows different retro uniforms that MLB teams wore. Colon isn't the only player on the card, but he is one of the six players who have pictures on the card. He certainly didn't get onto that card for his performance, as he gave up 6 earned runs on 8 hits in 4.1 innings in a 2-6 loss to the Cubs.

He also has a postseason card, #NYM-11, which is part of the Mets' postseason team set. That was only available as part of the team set, but some internet sellers have parted out the sets into singles. The set had a print run of 392.

I don't know if I will chase down those last three cards. Card #47 is a little expensive for what it is, and the other two don't really move the needle for me as far as subject matter.

27 October 2016

Cloak & Dagger Sketch Card by Ryan van der Draaij

Cloak and Dagger are some of my favorite under-the-radar comic book characters. They first showed up in comics in 1982 as minor characters in a Spider-Man book, but were popular enough to get their own run of titles (sharing a title with Dr. Strange for part of their run) that lasted for a total of 49 issues. I've got all of those comics in my collection, but it's been a while since I read them. In the years since their stand-alone series was cancelled, they have popped up from time to time, but never for more than a few issues. Apparently they are slated to get their own TV show in the near future, but I don't know anything about it beyond the announcement of the series. I am even worse at keeping up with shows and movies than I am at keeping up on reading my monthly comic subscriptions.

I picked up this sketch card featuring Cloak & Dagger from eBay. The artist is Ryan van der Draaij, whose work I've had on my watch list for a long time. The sketch was drawn for 2013 Upper Deck Marvel Fleer Retro. I think it's a nicely-done sketch that captures the characters very well. I think this is my 4th sketch card featuring Cloak and/or Dagger, so this is turning into a real PC for me. I'll be keeping an eye out for more, as their light/dark power sets make for some good artwork.

26 October 2016

Pack of the Day 144: 2016 Topps UFC Chronicles

When I made my (relatively) recent order from Blowout Cards, I tossed in a pack of 2016 Topps UFC Chronicles. This product was put out in a jumbo pack format, so you get a decent number of cards (40) and a 1:2 chance at pulling a hit of some kind. Each box contains 10 packs with 5 hits, made up of 3 relics and 2 autographs. Additionally, there are parallels and inserts.

Apparently this is my third pack break post of this stuff. I guess I must like it. I have to admit that I've been using the same scan of the pack front, though. Scanning is kind of a pain, so I will reuse a photo if I can.

The base cards don't really break any new ground. I think I showed that Robbie Lawler card in one of the other pack break posts. I just like cards that show title belts in the photo.

I guess I showed these cards in those other posts, too. There's nothing new under the sun, especially on this blog.

I got a couple of Black & White parallels in this pack. They are numbered out of # / 188. This is probably the best-looking parallel in the product. It would make for a cool set to collect, but I don't think I have the drive for something like that right now.

I was flipping through the images during my photo editing, and this happened. I don't know why it makes me laugh to see Holly Holm and Joe Lauzon switch places, but it does and I made a gif of it.

These must be the Silver parallels. Some pretty decent photos in this batch, especially that submission attempt on the Brandao card. Silvers are unnumbered and are barely distinguishable from the base cards.

Here are the inserts from the pack. I got a Fight Poster, an Octagon of Honor insert of Demetrious Johnson, a Victorious Debut of Jimi Manuwa, and an autograph of Yoel Romero. I can't complain too much about pulling a hit. Romero's autograph looks kind of funny since it's offset way to the left. It looks like he got interrupted halfway through writing his name.

Today's post is a little light on content, I suppose. Sometimes it's hard to get something written. The UFC had a stretch there with an event every weekend, but they've taken a bit of a break and there haven't been any fights for a little bit. There are some good fight cards coming up, though, so I have that to look forward to.

25 October 2016

Using the Buyee Shopping Service to Get Wrestling Cards from Japan

I finally took the plunge and used a buying service to pick up some Japanese wrestling cards from Amazon.co.jp and Yahoo! Auctions. The service I used is called Buyee. They have a browser add-on that allows you to use Amazon.co.jp to add items to your Buyee cart, and their site has a direct link to Yahoo! Auctions that allows you to search, make purchases, place bids, and place snipe bids directly form the auction listings. They have partnerships with other sites, too, like Rakuten and ZOZO. The one seller I use on Rakuten ships directly to the US, though, so I can't see myself using them for that.

I purchased five cards through Yahoo! Auctions and one card set from an Amazon seller. I'll show off the single cards first, and then I'll go into a breakdown of how using Buyee went for me.

I was able to add three autographed BBM True Heart wrestling cards to my Command Bolshoi autograph timeline. First up is the card from 2005. I showed off the 2005 base set just a couple of days ago. This autograph is numbered # 60 / 89.

Here is Command Bolshoi's 2006 BBM True Heart autograph. Her 2012 card also pictures her with a guitar, and many of her Facebook posts show her and some friends on a stage with instruments. I assume they have some kind of band. This one is numbered # 62 / 99.

The last Command Bolshoi autograph I got was the 2007 version. This photo is a little more standard than her usual fare; it's just a posed outdoor shot. This autograph is numbered # 064 / 100. These three cards filled a nice gap in my Command Bolshoi collection. I think the only True Heart autograph I am missing from her now is 2004. I am not certain that a 2004 autograph exists, though. It is likely, but 2004 cards in general just don't show up ever.

I also picked up a couple of Rabbit Miu autographs that I didn't have yet. I haven't made a concerted effort to build her autograph timeline like I have for Command Bolshoi, but I'd be willing to bet that I've got most of her autographs. This is her 2012 autograph. It's numbered # 013 / 100.

I also jumped ahead a few years and got the 2015 version of her autograph. This one is numbered # 61 / 90. I think the sets with wrestlers pictured in regular clothes predate her wrestling debut in 2011, so she only has cards with posed shots in ring gear.

Hopefully you can click the image to enlarge it.

Now that I've showed all of the single cards I bought, I wanted to go into some detail about my experience using Buyee to get these cards. Buyee acts as a middleman for transactions with Japanese merchants. They take care of payment and domestic shipping, and they then forward your packages to you. All of these actions have one or more fees associated with them. So many fees, and I didn't even use all of the services.

For the 2003 BBM True Heart set, I made the purchase from an Amazon Japan seller. Buyee has a browser extension that you can download. When you find an item you want, you click the button to add it to your Buyee cart, which takes you to the Buyee page where you can add special instructions and adjust the quantity you want to purchase. Once the details are all good you click the button to make the purchase. In addition to the price of the item, you also pay a 150 JPY service fee. The yen tracks pretty close to the dollar, so you can roughly read 150 JPY as $1.50. The other fees come later. So making the purchase costs the item price plus the Service Fee. There are additional services you can pay for, like having Buyee inspect your items for damage and correctness upon arrival in the warehouse. I declined these services.

For the Yahoo! Auctions, Buyee is integrated into the auction listings. You can do a number of things, such as Buy It Now, bidding, and snipe bidding. For Buy It Now listings you pay right away, and I think for bids the money gets moved when the auction completes. In addition to the 150 JPY service fee, there is a 200 JPY payment fee that I guess covers the cost of making the payment to the seller and arranging shipment. So just for that you tack on an additional 350 JPY to each auction you win. 

Once you make all of your purchases, you wait for the packages to arrive at the warehouse. This is where the domestic shipping fee comes in. You are paying for the shipping from the seller to the Buyee warehouse. You don't pay this cost until you pay the international shipping fee at the very end. But it's there, and just like with your standard eBay or Amazon sellers, the shipping cost can vary. I paid between 194 JPY and 390 JPY each for shipping on these six items. My totals so far are 4,430 JPY for the base purchase price, 900 JPY for service fees, 1000 JPY for Yahoo! Auction payment fees, and 1,546 JPY for domestic shipping.

Once the items hit the warehouse, you have thirty days to request shipment or you start incurring storage fees. This gives you a decent window to gather items together because consolidation of packages is a big cost saver. You want to wait until all of your packages are in the warehouse before you consolidate, because each time you consolidate it costs more. You can choose not to consolidate, but then you will pay international shipping on each package, and you don't want to do that. For only two items, you can consolidate them for 500 JPY. For three or more, it is a flat 1000 JPY fee. But if you combine two items at 500 JPY and then want to add another item to the package, it will cost an additional 1000 JPY. And then an additional 1000 JPY each additional time you consolidate. I waited until all six packages were in the warehouse and consolidated them all at once for 1000 JPY. I divided it evenly between them in the chart. There are additional services that you can purchase, like protective packaging. I declined them.

Once your package is consolidated, you choose among the international shipping options that are made available based on the weight and size of your package. For my package there were around 8 different shipping services with different delivery speeds. I again went with the cheapest option at 1,190 JPY. There were options all the way up to around 4,000 JPY, if I recall correctly. Once you click that final button, the domestic shipping, consolidation, and international shipping fees all get charged to you and the package gets prepped and shipped out. In my case, all of the packages (PWEs for the single cards and a padded mailer for the set) were placed in bubble wrap and then placed together in a shipping bag. My wife had an appointment on the day the package was scheduled to arrive, so I took some leave from work to stay home and sign for it. Most of my packages from Japan require a signature, so I was expecting this.

In the end, fees and shipping charges wound up increasing the price I paid on my items by more than double. I still feel like I got a pretty reasonable deal overall, but it's tough to see a $45 purchase balloon up over $100 after fees are added. This isn't a service I would use often or casually, but I could see myself doing something like this once a year when I see a few really desirable items pop up. I might have skipped the Rabbit Miu autographs if I had anticipated how much the fees would really cost me, but in the end I am happy to have them in my collection. The price could have been even higher if I had used some of the other services that Buyee offers, like inspection and protective packaging. Overall I did get pretty fair prices for items I couldn't find in the United States, and didn't really vastly overpay on the transaction as a whole. The Buyee site was a little hard to follow, but in aggregate the FAQ pages gave me a pretty good awareness of the fees beforehand, although I don't know if they really sunk in until I made my little chart.