Looking for Advice on Collection Downsizing

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Sorry if this is the wrong place to post, but I couldn't really find a section of the forum that was dedicated to general Star Wars Collection discussion that doesn't revolve around discussion about the toys in particular or displaying.

I grew up through the 90s era of Star Wars. I was into it since I was very young, but as you know, the 90s era was kind of notorious for having a lot of ...bad Star Wars toys/merch. My family knew that I was really into Star Wars so they tended to just overload me at Christmas/birthday with anything that had the Star Wars label on it. As a result, I accumulated a large pile of Star Wars toys from the 90s/early 00s era that no one really seems to want. Lots of old Power of the Force figures, carded Phantom Menace figures, loose vehicles, lots of Micromachines, Bend-Ems, die-cast figures and a whole host of other Star Wars toys/merchandise from that era. I really need to get rid of it to free up room. It's been taking up so much space for years. I really don't want to just throw it away, especially since a lot of it is still in the package (parents kept telling me to not open stuff because it would be valuable one day and would often buy me extras of things I really wanted to open so that I would still have one in the package..._). But almost none of it (a few PotF vehicles aside) really fit in my current collection focus.

I was just wondering what you all think would be the best way to get rid of it or if you had any advice or had a similar situation. Most of it isn't valuable enough to be worth the shipping costs, I would imagine. I live in a small area so I'm not sure that I could find anyone local who would want to take it off my hands either. I don't have any young family members to pass it along to. I would like to get at least SOMETHING out of it if I could
 
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Honestly? Most of my POTF2 - ROTS era figures (not all...some I still think can fit into a modern display) I actually just gave to charity for children in poverty. I mean you can try to make money off them, but trust me when I say...it's more effort than it's worth. Most the stuff is relatively worthless now. So I thought, well...they're toys. Who can still appreciate them? Children in need! Plus it's a kind of feel good therapeutic thing to do whilst still being productive and solving your problem.
 
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Yeah, the donation route sounds like the best idea if it's stuff you don't think will sell for very much.
 
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Agree with the donation idea 100%; a charity/Goodwill/etc. would be a good place to donate these. It's a definite misconception that old SW toys are worth loads of money. For the most part, definitely not.

Maybe the Vintage stuff (1977-1985) is worth something (depending on the shape/condition, whether or not it's packaged, etc.). However, much of the modern toys (1995-on) - especially POTF2 - are in many cases worth less than what they cost @ retail. I remember back in early-mid 2000, many toy stores (TRU, Kay-bee) were blowing out a lot of POTF2 toys for extremely good sale prices. As a result, I suspect that the market got over-saturated due to people getting a lot of these products.

Note also that in some cases, even if you keep old figures in good shape & even if they're packaged - the plastic will in many cases deteriorate & become "sticky" - thereby decreasing the value of the item(s).

In any case, I don't see most of these toys being worth much $. You may get something if you try to sell them via the mail - maybe. However, I suspect that when you add in the shipping costs, you probably won't get much more than you paid for the items - if that.

In my case, I've given my unwanted SW toys (typically POTF2 & some other select figures) to a younger relative who's a big SW fan. This gets it out of my hands & frees up much needed space, and they're going to someone who appreciates the item(s).
 
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I hit a point when really, I had to ask myself how many (example) Tatooine Luke Skywalker figures do I need? I did keep most the accessories, usually the exclusive or unique stuff like for example: I kept the floppy hat, T-16 model, and binoculars from past Tatooine Luke figures but gave the figure itself away, that way I could give those accessories to more modern and vastly superior Luke figures. I kept the oxygen masks from the cinema scenes Mynock Hunt set to put in my falcon and of course kept the Mynock. I always kept tools from prior dated figures too to put in it as well. But why do I need a He-Man like Han Solo or a dozen Princess Leia's with monkey faces? I remember back when the POTF2 era was being released, people were buying them up in droves believing they'd be worth something. For a brief time, at the time, they were. They certainly didn't retain that value long. Some of them you practically can't even give away anymore. I think it was just due to the novelty of new SW figures being made but also that misconception that they would be a goldmine later in life. My poor parents paid like $50 for a Princess Leia. Looking back, it's silly. So I began to purge my collection. Unless it's a fairly exclusive one and done character like, say, some senators from Attack of the Clones or a random cantina alien, I gave them away. Save for POTF2-ROTS figures/character like that, my collection is almost entirely made up of (at the earliest) 30th Anniversary collection, 2006 and 2008 SAGA collection, Legacy collection, Black Series 3'', and the modernized Vintage collection. Even most ships have modernized versions that just make the originals pale in comparison. I've updated almost every classic ship I had to the newest version. I just felt I'd stick with one "definitive" version of a character or ship if they have a multitude of versions to chose from. It does seem like some of this more modern stuff is retaining its value though.
 
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You could google search toy stores, comic shops, collectible stores, antique stores, flea markets in your area or nearby towns/cities and see if any come up.

There is a local, independent toy store in my area that pays $1.00 each for loose action figures of any type and $2.00 each for carded figures so you might find a local store in your area(or close enough to drive to)that pays that much as well. It doesn't hurt to look into since you are trying to get something out of them. Just keep your expectations low but even at $1.00 to $2.00 a piece per figure, if you have quite a few, it adds up nicely. Also, keep in mind that one store may only want figures but another store might want some of the other items you have.

You could even try Craigslist and then just meet up with the person you are selling to at a store parking lot.

I've actually sold a lot of figures over the years to local Scummers and meeting them at Target/Walmart parking lots to conduct the transactions.

Hope this helps.
 
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But why do I need a He-Man like Han Solo or a dozen Princess Leia's with monkey faces? I remember back when the POTF2 era was being released, people were buying them up in droves believing they'd be worth something. For a brief time, at the time, they were. They certainly didn't retain that value long. Some of them you practically can't even give away anymore.
Agree completely with this - very relatable. I remember the POTF2 era well (1995-2000). The first "dog faced" Princess Leia was an extremely HTF figure at the time; I think it took me close to a year to find this @ retail - and when I finally did, I was thinking I had found something very valuable - LOL.

I remember comic stores selling this for high prices - despite that fact that this was a really ugly figure. These days, there are so many other superior 3.75" ANH Leia figures that this sub-par version is very forgettable - other than due to the novelty aspect. So, these days - I agree you may have a difficult time giving this away - LOL.
 
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Agree completely with this - very relatable. I remember the POTF2 era well (1995-2000). The first "dog faced" Princess Leia was an extremely HTF figure at the time; I think it took me close to a year to find this @ retail - and when I finally did, I was thinking I had found something very valuable - LOL.

I remember comic stores selling this for high prices - despite that fact that this was a really ugly figure. These days, there are so many other superior 3.75" ANH Leia figures that this sub-par version is very forgettable - other than due to the novelty aspect. So, these days - I agree you may have a difficult time giving this away - LOL.
Really there's very few POTF2 era figures I still have. I kept the cantina band, EV-9D9, 8D8, 2-1B Medical Droid, ASP-7 Droid, Lak Sivrak (wolfman), Ishi Tib, Pote Snitkin, Jawa's, Aunt Beru, Motti, Wuher, Max Rebo Band, Spider Droid, Jabba's Dancers cinema scene, and Kabe and Muftak. For TPM I kept Captain Panaka, Padme, Theed Battle Padme, Senator Palpatine, Chancellor Valorum, Rune Haako, Captain Tarpals, Nute Gunray, Holographic Darth Sidious, Gasgano, Sio Bibble, C-3PO, Pit Droids, Ody Mandrell, and the Sebulba and two Watto's Box aliens from the cinema scenes. For POTJ I kept Shmi, Tessek, Zutton, Duros, Boss Nass, R4-M9, FX-7, Sebulba, Bo'Shek, Ketwol, Mas Amedda, Anakin (oddly still the most modern Tatooine Anakin from TPM), Amanaman, Bacta Tank Luke, and all three Padme's/Amidala's. For original SAGA (AOTC era) I kept General Rieekan, Ephant Mon, Djas Puhr, Imperial Dignitaries, R1-G, J'Quille, Tanus Spijek, General Dodonna, Captain Antillies, Admiral Ozzel, General Madine, Rappertunie, Kitik Keed'kak, and a select few AOTC characters. For the Original Trilogy collection I only kept Myo, the Gotal alien, Dannik Jerriko, and Lobot. For Vintage on the Card I kept all of those but Obi-Wan (Ben) Kenobi, R2, C-3PO, Yoda, and Bespin Luke.

SO I mean I guess I kept more than I realized before the more "modern" style figures, most of those characters are one and done figures and never got remade. It's kind of shocking that EV-9D9, 8D8, and some of the others haven't been touched since the 90's. Phantom Menace has fairly large characters that are extremely dated like Panaka, Theed Padme, Nute Gunray, and Tarpals. Lobot hasn't been touched since the early to mid 2000's. But once you get to POTJ, most those figures aren't so dated that they can't work in a modern display. But I really would love to see some redone. I really think cantina aliens should all be made to sit, articulated knees.
 
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Making donations is always a worthy cause, but make sure you choose a good charity, as some are little more than a business, with little going to those in need. For packaged items, theres always Toys For Tots - I like donating there, because they go directly to kids.

Another option that doesn't involve tedious selling, is trading - it can actually be fun. I've traded with dozens of collectors here over the years, so you might be able to find someone that wants what you have, and has something to exchange in return.
 
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Fore sure.

Though I do find it interestingly comical?, if kids aren't that interested in figures today. WTH would they want figures from 30 years ago? lol
 
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I used to just send everything I didn't want to my nephews. But they are getting older now and I kind of think it might do more harm than good to just unload toys on kids when they get into their teenage years. All you are basically doing is teaching them that they never have to work for anything and they are entitled to get everything they want for free.

So, now I just donate stuff to the Salvation Army. Sure, they own stores and resell the items, but their businesses provide jobs and income for people who would otherwise be unemployed and even homeless. So it's still a good cause.

If I have actual vintage stuff (1978-1985) that I want to get rid of (which is happening less and less frequently these days), then I have a friend who is always interested in buying my stuff. Otherwise, I just put it up on eBay. For vintage Kenner toys, selling everything individually is almost always worth the time and effort.
 
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Thanks for the input everyone. I do wish I had someone I knew in person who would appreciate them. If I could find a local buyer I'd gladly take $2 a figure for most of them but we barely have any flea market-type outlets here. Have a couple but they already have random Star Wars toys from the same era rotting in display cases and in booths for years so I figure it's not worth trying to sell mine off at these locations.

I guess I just feel bad about giving them away because most of them were gifts from family including my grandma, who's no longer with me and I just have this feeling like I'm throwing away gifts they bought for me. Other issue is some of the stuff seems to be worth a least a good $10-$20 here and there and I'm not really in a position to turn down cash. I think I'm going to have a family member look into the local facebook buy/sell group for me (since I don't use it) but I'm not expecting any bites. All in all I think I have about 5 storage tubs full of stuff I want to offload but I know a lot of it is going to be a hard sell. I've got everything from carded figures to multi-figure packs to vehicles to completely random stuff like board games, coin banks and a big stuffed Jar Jar Binks with a Pit Droid alarm... (No I didn't ask for that!)
 
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To those who have a lot of SW stuff (or other belongings) that they don't want but are still not sure about unloading, make sure you do eventually get rid of this stuff so your place doesn't end up looking like this guy's - LOL:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLJjiXFMUwg

So, now I just donate stuff to the Salvation Army. Sure, they own stores and resell the items, but their businesses provide jobs and income for people who would otherwise be unemployed and even homeless. So it's still a good cause.
Agree 100%. I feel the same way about Goodwill (not that many Salvation Army's around here to donate to). Though I know Goodwill is a business that sells their donations, here is my take on this:

-They do employ people who would otherwise probably not have work.

-They sell the items that are donated for reasonable prices, so people who go in there - who want the items - are getting them for a lot cheaper than they would anywhere else. Obviously, the items are used - but that may not matter to some people.

The above reasons are primarily why I prefer to donate items (that I don't give to relatives) to a charity instead of trying to sell them. I.e., I wouldn't get much money for these anyway - and, IMHO they're going to a worthwhile cause. Plus, I have donated items in unopened packages - so, when the charity sells these particular ones - whoever buys them will be getting a brand new item.
 
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I have heard locally in this area. The Goodwill president has said about current employees that have challenges. She said if they can not work they shouldn't be here. I personally thought the comment was out of line and rude. I have since not donated anything to Goodwill or plan on it. Also, had a friend that passed away before Christmas. Her car since it was becoming difficult to transfer it,due to still being in her deceased husbands name. It got donated to Goodwill. It was a nice car with low mileage. Instead of them reselling it, they just crushed it for scrap. So two instances where this company doesn't do the correct thing. I now give to a local store that helps abused women and families.
 
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It's tough for sure, especially if you're in a small town. In the city there are many outlets, including craigslist. What Ive learned is that there is a market for almost anything. Eventually there will be a collector who decides he has a hole in his collection and wants that stuff. The question is whether you can find that guy.
 
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Good to know re: Goodwill. I typically will donate items in convenient charity drop boxes around where I live; not sure if they're Goodwill or not.

However, I will say that - despite the above - donating items in decent shape to Goodwill has to be better than throwing them away in the trash or dump. At least - if you're giving them away, someone out there may get some use out of them. Just my .02
 
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I gave all my carded figures to my daughter when she was three.
it was glorious.

now she's a teenager and we've got a huge rubbermaid-bin full of "loose" figures. LOL
I have no idea what to do with them. :p again. LOL
 
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What led to all of the hoarding and perceived value back in '95 was the fact that even loose vintage figures were selling for $50 or more, never mind the hundreds, even thousands of dollars some MOC figures were going for. Vehicles, too. Also, remember that these were the days of the price guides, which people you tried to sell stuff to at Flea Markets would ignore, but people still believed those numbers. Few realized it was the scarcity of packaged vintage figures that made them so valuable, since most of us actually opened them and played with them! A lot of idiots likely felt, for example, "if one vintage figure is worth X amount of dollars 10 years later, then I must buy TEN of each of these new figures - then I'll make 10 times that much money in 10 years."

As for that Leia, she was initially one per case, and not in every case assortment, as was common (yet ridiculous) for toy lines to shortpack the female figures (Cheetara was near impossible to find for the old Thundercats line). Ironically, it was the fact that ebay didn't exist that drove the prices up. While you can often get decent prices on there today from scalpers due to competition, in 1995, scalpers were simply the local flea market guys who walked into TRU, cleared the pegs to CAUSE scarceness, then charged whatever they wanted because there was little to no competition, and they WERE the only way you could buy the figure, unless you beat them to it in the store. Hence the $50-$80 Leias until she appeared in more frequently in Wave 2, at which point the moronically shortpacked Lando saw his value go up. We had a guy like this from the local flea market who would wait outside for the stores to open, as TRU was notorious for stocking during the night. Once we figured it out, a bunch of fans and other scalpers started doing the same thing. Only reason I figured it out was, when the SOTE wave came out, I went to TRU no more than 10 minutes after opening, and this father with his kid told me he saw the flea market guy walk out with the entire case that was on the pegs. As a collector who was still relatively young (in college) and naive, this whole thing was a huge learning experience for me, especially when I tried to sell a few loose vintage figures (ones I had multiples of ) for quick cash, and walked out with less than $10, because, as I was told, "we don't look at price guides."
 
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make sure you do eventually get rid of this stuff so your place doesn't end up looking like this guy's - LOL:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DLJjiXFMUwg
Collecting goals right there. :grin:

Seriously, though, I felt like I needed to wear gloves and a respirator just to watch that video. I'm sure there are plenty of great finds hidden in there, but I wouldn't be able to deal with all the dirt and the smell.
 
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As for that Leia, she was initially one per case, and not in every case assortment, as was common (yet ridiculous) for toy lines to shortpack the female figures (Cheetara was near impossible to find for the old Thundercats line). Ironically, it was the fact that ebay didn't exist that drove the prices up. While you can often get decent prices on there today from scalpers due to competition, in 1995, scalpers were simply the local flea market guys who walked into TRU, cleared the pegs to CAUSE scarceness, then charged whatever they wanted because there was little to no competition, and they WERE the only way you could buy the figure, unless you beat them to it in the store. Hence the $50-$80 Leias until she appeared in more frequently in Wave 2, at which point the moronically shortpacked Lando saw his value go up. We had a guy like this from the local flea market who would wait outside for the stores to open, as TRU was notorious for stocking during the night. Once we figured it out, a bunch of fans and other scalpers started doing the same thing. Only reason I figured it out was, when the SOTE wave came out, I went to TRU no more than 10 minutes after opening, and this father with his kid told me he saw the flea market guy walk out with the entire case that was on the pegs. As a collector who was still relatively young (in college) and naive, this whole thing was a huge learning experience for me, especially when I tried to sell a few loose vintage figures (ones I had multiples of ) for quick cash, and walked out with less than $10, because, as I was told, "we don't look at price guides."
Ah, yes - I remember collecting in the mid-late '90's..and definitely not with fondness. I was in my last semester of college when POTF2 first hit (Fall 1995 for my area) & my nostalgia for OT SW toys was huge then - so I was really into collecting these. I hated scalpers with a passion. They always seemed to get to the stores right before I did, and during that initial year - I rarely found anything @ retail. Also, that was before online stores - so if you didn't get the toy(s) at a brick & mortar store, you were pretty much relegated to getting these on the secondary market, i.e. comic stores, etc.

Things have changed so much these days. The positive(s) are that you can find a lot of product online, and sometimes they don't jack the prices up too much. Going along with this, my days of driving all over town looking for new product are gone - not only is it pointless in most cases - but, there aren't nearly as many brick & mortar stores out there as there were 10/15/20 years ago. Target & Wal-mart have a lot fewer SW toys than they did in the '90's/200X's....and stores like TRU & Kay-bee (where I used to go to quite a bit to look for toys) are out of business.
 
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Ah, yes - I remember these days...and definitely not with fondness. I was in my last semester of college when POTF2 first hit (Fall 1995 for my area) & my nostalgia for OT SW toys was huge then - so I was really into collecting these. I hated scalpers with a passion. They always seemed to get to the stores right before I did, and during that initial year - I rarely found anything @ retail. Also, that was before online stores - so if you didn't get the toy(s) at a brick & mortar store, you were pretty much relegated to getting these on the secondary market, i.e. comic stores, etc.

Things have changed so much these days. There's not nearly as much new product out there, and going along with this there aren't nearly as many retail stores as there were in the '90's/200X's. I do still get some stuff at retail, but also order online as well.
Yep, between Star Wars and Startling Lineup figures, 1995 was a horrible year for scalpers. And those guys were brazen about it, too, walking through the store with their carts loaded with the figures. At least the ebay guys today are fairer than the flea market guys used to be. The markup on most items is not so ridiculous that the thought of how much gas I'd waste searching around makes it worth paying a few bucks more for them doing the legwork - and with free shipping & today's gas prices, you might just about break even. And keep in mind, there was no such thing as free shipping when stores started going online - you'd still be paying anywhere from $5-10 more for that alone.
 
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