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Why is prices going up ?

Discuss vintage Kenner and Palitoy Star Wars toys from the 1977-1985 era.
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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby Wreck-It Ralph » Wed Mar 01, 2017 7:25 pm

SublevelStudios wrote:I'm seeing average/beater lots going for monumental amounts recently. Stuff that 2 years ago you couldn't give away are now being fouhgt over tooth and nail.

One lot I saw on eaby last night ended up selling for an eye watering amount - 6 months ago it would have been £300 max, it sold for nearly £700.

I think we're likely to see this more and more but like the property market a few years ago, this kind of madness is unsustainable.


Comic books have continued to go up and up over the years, a high grade Action Comics 1 (origin of Superman) is over a million and still rising so why can't Star Wars collectibles do the same. A 30 Back Fett or Palitoy VCJ (plus many other figures) are much rarer than a Action Comics 1 so what is stopping them from continue to rise especialy with more potential collectors coming from both the established and emerging economies. The high publicised sales (loose Vlix £9500, 30 Back Fett £18000) will attract new collector/investor types as it has done with Art, Cars, Comics.

An important point to remember is that collecting is usually done with disposable income so it is somewhat different to the property market, chances are the people that will be buying Star Wars items and potentialy pushing the prices up will probably not be worrying too much if the price of thier house drops by 20%. If new collectors are emerging on a regular basis and thereby increasing demand and supply is capped then it would be suprising if the current prices seen will suddenly drop.

If you want an example of unsustainable madness look at the property or rental prices in W1 or SW7 those post codes (plus many others) continued to rise by an average of 15% through the recession.
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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby Lee Gregory » Wed Mar 01, 2017 9:15 pm

Been collecting approximately 15 years and prices have consistently risen, don't think I can remember a time they have fallen.....
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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby Jez » Wed Mar 01, 2017 9:20 pm

I've only been in the business since 2009, but I can definitely remember a time when there was a particular ebay seller from Runcorn who had a shed load of loose figures. Back in the day my ebay watch thread was full. Sunday afternoon would come along and it was bid, bid, bid! Rarely did a complete figure (non last 17) go over £4, on several occasions i was the sole bidder at 99P! Yes some were more expensive but you could get complete figures for a quid if you were lucky. All weapons checked out. Different times. The last 2 years have been absolutely crazy.
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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby Wreck-It Ralph » Wed Mar 01, 2017 9:35 pm

Jez wrote:I've only been in the business since 2009, but I can definitely remember a time when there was a particular ebay seller from Runcorn who had a shed load of loose figures. Back in the day my ebay watch thread was full. Sunday afternoon would come along and it was bid, bid, bid! Rarely did a complete figure (non last 17) go over £4, on several occasions i was the sole bidder at 99P! Yes some were more expensive but you could get complete figures for a quid if you were lucky. All weapons checked out. Different times. The last 2 years have been absolutely crazy.


Do you think it is Disney taking over or the success of the last two films or both?
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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby spoons » Wed Mar 01, 2017 10:49 pm

We're now heading into peak demand for vintage Star Wars. Generally men in their 40s with disposable income recapturing their childhood.

The rebirth of Star Wars by Disney has been a big factor in bringing in a load more of these nostalgia seekers. I think the big test will be in 15-20 years or so as people near retirement, and pensions may not be quite what we hope.

I'd expect a mass sell off then and I don't think the younger collectors will collect on the same scale as us, so prices will drop for the common stuff. There will still be demand purely for the SW logo but not on the scale we see today.

Action Man is 10 years older than Star Wars and there has definitely been a drop in prices over the last few years. How much this is due to an influx of reproductions or down to an ageing collector market is hard to tell. Probably a bit of both.
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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby tobedesu » Wed Mar 01, 2017 11:03 pm

Wreck-It Ralph wrote:
Jez wrote:I've only been in the business since 2009, but I can definitely remember a time when there was a particular ebay seller from Runcorn who had a shed load of loose figures. Back in the day my ebay watch thread was full. Sunday afternoon would come along and it was bid, bid, bid! Rarely did a complete figure (non last 17) go over £4, on several occasions i was the sole bidder at 99P! Yes some were more expensive but you could get complete figures for a quid if you were lucky. All weapons checked out. Different times. The last 2 years have been absolutely crazy.


Do you think it is Disney taking over or the success of the last two films or both?


Likely the success of the films and how much Star Wars is back in the spotlight.
My generation, 40's, possibly go shopping with the kids who may be into TFA and strikes a chord with the dads. Brings back the memories and they're straight round their parents to fish around the loft, and the nostalgia kicks in.
It has similarly happened to a couple of my mates.

I think misinformed articles like what was published in The Sun has also got folks excited.
All this brings in a lot of casual collectors/newbies who aren't familiar with price guides but just have to get in on the action.

There was some interesting action down at the NEC toy fair a few weeks back:
Looking around, I found a cut bubble Leia poncho complete for £40. Still on the card, cut down one side. Held off.
Had a look around and found some bag fresh Leia ponchos no weapon from another seller for £15. I bought one.
These were going elsewhere for £20-30. Decided to have another look at the carded figure about an hour later and seller had priced it up to £60.
I remember when these were going for £12-15 about 6 months ago, without blaster.
Princess Leia figure has gone up considerably. Without a doubt Carrie's death had an impact on Leia prices.

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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby palitoyjunky » Thu Mar 02, 2017 6:34 am

Yeh since I got in the game in the mid 90s prices have steadily risen from then to now. The birth of professional grading companies have certainly been the catalyst for the ridiculous increase of loose item prices :!:
I rem years ago I had a stunning Kenner 41 back Hammerhead that I picked up for £50. It had one flaw, an absolute tiny bit of ink on the card that really didn't change the piece-but of course stopped it being eligible for grading. A dealer wanted to rip it from my hands for around £100 because he wanted to get the figure U graded as he had sold a U90 previously for £225 :!: :?
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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby SublevelStudios » Thu Mar 02, 2017 8:10 am

I think one thing to remember in all this is that SW is a global cultural phenomenon. We're in uncharted territory here, there's no other franchise like it or likely to be and now Disney have control it will be around for many, many years.

Some Star Wars items will have historical relevance and will certainly increase in value, stuff like the early posters, press and promotional material, props and cast/crew items.

With toys, I think as has already been said, top end items will always be desired, MOC's especially.

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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby Wreck-It Ralph » Thu Mar 02, 2017 6:54 pm

spoons wrote:We're now heading into peak demand for vintage Star Wars. Generally men in their 40s with disposable income recapturing their childhood.

The rebirth of Star Wars by Disney has been a big factor in bringing in a load more of these nostalgia seekers. I think the big test will be in 15-20 years or so as people near retirement, and pensions may not be quite what we hope.

I'd expect a mass sell off then and I don't think the younger collectors will collect on the same scale as us, so prices will drop for the common stuff. There will still be demand purely for the SW logo but not on the scale we see today.

Action Man is 10 years older than Star Wars and there has definitely been a drop in prices over the last few years. How much this is due to an influx of reproductions or down to an ageing collector market is hard to tell. Probably a bit of both.


I am not sure whether you can compare Star Wars collecting to Action Man collecting as I do not believe I have ever seen a Action Man film or not in the last 10-15 years so that particular toy franchise is doing nothing to reinvigorate itself that I know of so understandibly popularity in collecting reduces and eventually disapears altogether until they start making films or cartoons again.

Superman dates back to 1938 and Batman 1939 I dont see those particular Characters popularity dying off any time soon and the collecting of the comics is still hugely popular and prices continue to rise. I think the same will happen with Star Wars if Disney continue making popular films like TFA and Rouge One that will refresh the collector pool and some of those collectors will naturally be drawn to the past.

Another important point is not all purchases are made by collectors some are made by investors and as prices rise it may attract more investor types as it has done with comics.
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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby spoons » Thu Mar 02, 2017 10:55 pm

Wreck-It Ralph wrote:
spoons wrote:We're now heading into peak demand for vintage Star Wars. Generally men in their 40s with disposable income recapturing their childhood.

The rebirth of Star Wars by Disney has been a big factor in bringing in a load more of these nostalgia seekers. I think the big test will be in 15-20 years or so as people near retirement, and pensions may not be quite what we hope.

I'd expect a mass sell off then and I don't think the younger collectors will collect on the same scale as us, so prices will drop for the common stuff. There will still be demand purely for the SW logo but not on the scale we see today.

Action Man is 10 years older than Star Wars and there has definitely been a drop in prices over the last few years. How much this is due to an influx of reproductions or down to an ageing collector market is hard to tell. Probably a bit of both.


I am not sure whether you can compare Star Wars collecting to Action Man collecting as I do not believe I have ever seen a Action Man film or not in the last 10-15 years so that particular toy franchise is doing nothing to reinvigorate itself that I know of so understandibly popularity in collecting reduces and eventually disapears altogether until they start making films or cartoons again.

Superman dates back to 1938 and Batman 1939 I dont see those particular Characters popularity dying off any time soon and the collecting of the comics is still hugely popular and prices continue to rise. I think the same will happen with Star Wars if Disney continue making popular films like TFA and Rouge One that will refresh the collector pool and some of those collectors will naturally be drawn to the past.

Another important point is not all purchases are made by collectors some are made by investors and as prices rise it may attract more investor types as it has done with comics.


A fair point on the global appeal of action man, but the bulk of 80s and 90s superheroes toys are worth next to nothing. Its only the iconic pieces that fetch big money. I've got a few 70s mego superheroes and would liken them very much to Action Man. Its only the rare and sealed ones that tend to fetch good money (i.e. removable cowl batman).

Higher end stuff includes things like sealed Mego Palitoy Hulks for £200-£300 and they are generally bought by 40 somethings too, but they are pretty iconic so I'd expect to hold their value. Loose Mego superheroes seemed to have dropped in price considering inflation.

The very early superhero toys are good investments much like mint first issue early comics and the first 12 SW figs. But there will be 1000s of pieces of Star Wars merchandise made between now and when the next gen get to 40 odd. Do you really think future generations are going to be paying silly money on ROTJ Jabba goons, I'd also be surprised if a 1980s Luke Skywalker with orange hair or a red bar R5 will be at all desirable in years to come? The kids of today will have their own Episode 15 rarities to collect :) I feel that we are essentially the next generation of train collectors and we'll be replaced by video game collectors or something else.

Iconic pieces will go up in price, but I'd be willing to bet money that the bulk of what we own will be worth less in real terms in the future. The potential longevity of Star Wars may actually lessen its appeal. Does anyone get excited when another Marvel film comes out anymore - who saw Antman at the cinema?

Its a long held mantra but collecting should be for the fun of it, as soon as you start collecting purely as an investment you could find things go downhill quickly.
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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby poncho » Thu Mar 02, 2017 11:27 pm

prices going up

new rebooted franchise of our beloved starwars is a major factor

but ultimately i blame facebook and the influx of newbie uneducated collectors who believe what anyone tells them something is worth

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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby ScruffyLookingNH » Fri Mar 03, 2017 8:51 am

spoons wrote:
Wreck-It Ralph wrote:
spoons wrote:We're now heading into peak demand for vintage Star Wars. Generally men in their 40s with disposable income recapturing their childhood.

The rebirth of Star Wars by Disney has been a big factor in bringing in a load more of these nostalgia seekers. I think the big test will be in 15-20 years or so as people near retirement, and pensions may not be quite what we hope.

I'd expect a mass sell off then and I don't think the younger collectors will collect on the same scale as us, so prices will drop for the common stuff. There will still be demand purely for the SW logo but not on the scale we see today.

Action Man is 10 years older than Star Wars and there has definitely been a drop in prices over the last few years. How much this is due to an influx of reproductions or down to an ageing collector market is hard to tell. Probably a bit of both.


I am not sure whether you can compare Star Wars collecting to Action Man collecting as I do not believe I have ever seen a Action Man film or not in the last 10-15 years so that particular toy franchise is doing nothing to reinvigorate itself that I know of so understandibly popularity in collecting reduces and eventually disapears altogether until they start making films or cartoons again.

Superman dates back to 1938 and Batman 1939 I dont see those particular Characters popularity dying off any time soon and the collecting of the comics is still hugely popular and prices continue to rise. I think the same will happen with Star Wars if Disney continue making popular films like TFA and Rouge One that will refresh the collector pool and some of those collectors will naturally be drawn to the past.

Another important point is not all purchases are made by collectors some are made by investors and as prices rise it may attract more investor types as it has done with comics.


A fair point on the global appeal of action man, but the bulk of 80s and 90s superheroes toys are worth next to nothing. Its only the iconic pieces that fetch big money. I've got a few 70s mego superheroes and would liken them very much to Action Man. Its only the rare and sealed ones that tend to fetch good money (i.e. removable cowl batman).

Higher end stuff includes things like sealed Mego Palitoy Hulks for £200-£300 and they are generally bought by 40 somethings too, but they are pretty iconic so I'd expect to hold their value. Loose Mego superheroes seemed to have dropped in price considering inflation.

The very early superhero toys are good investments much like mint first issue early comics and the first 12 SW figs. But there will be 1000s of pieces of Star Wars merchandise made between now and when the next gen get to 40 odd. Do you really think future generations are going to be paying silly money on ROTJ Jabba goons, I'd also be surprised if a 1980s Luke Skywalker with orange hair or a red bar R5 will be at all desirable in years to come? The kids of today will have their own Episode 15 rarities to collect :) I feel that we are essentially the next generation of train collectors and we'll be replaced by video game collectors or something else.

Iconic pieces will go up in price, but I'd be willing to bet money that the bulk of what we own will be worth less in real terms in the future. The potential longevity of Star Wars may actually lessen its appeal. Does anyone get excited when another Marvel film comes out anymore - who saw Antman at the cinema?

Its a long held mantra but collecting should be for the fun of it, as soon as you start collecting purely as an investment you could find things go downhill quickly.


Absolutely nailed it, Andy. Cream always rises to the top. Yes, Action Comics #1 is worth a fortune, but look at Silver Age Superman comics; not worth a fraction of their Marvel equivelants and the Bronze age Superman stuff is worthless. I know, I have a few hundred of the buggers.

W-I-R makes good points about the influence of the films on the whole culture: Action Man, GI Joe/Action Force and even He-Man miss out on these super-popular films so their popularity will always be on a slower, lower curve. But Andy makes a great point with the Marvel films. I am a massive Marvel fan and have been for 25 years, but even I can't get excited about Ant-Man, Dr Strange, etc. Although I would like to see Logan I'm not desperate. There has been such a surfeit that it's rather killed it. Same with the endless TV shows.

So yes, to a degree, we are the next Gen of Baseball cards, model railways, Dinky Toys, and all those other declining hobbies. But whilst it makes money Disney will keep churning the franchise and reviving it. If they get the formula correct we'll never see the price drop. They do a Marvel (also a Disney company, note) then we'll see a Superman comic market: only the rarest most iconic will be worth anything.

I look at my more left field items and do not see them as investments at all, only fun. Luckily most of the price tags are still fun. If they're worth nothing in the future that's fine with me. Had my MOCs been worth nothing overnight I would have been a little upset!

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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby peekaygee73 » Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:48 pm

spoons wrote:The very early superhero toys are good investments much like mint first issue early comics and the first 12 SW figs. But there will be 1000s of pieces of Star Wars merchandise made between now and when the next gen get to 40 odd. Do you really think future generations are going to be paying silly money on ROTJ Jabba goons, I'd also be surprised if a 1980s Luke Skywalker with orange hair or a red bar R5 will be at all desirable in years to come? The kids of today will have their own Episode 15 rarities to collect :) I feel that we are essentially the next generation of train collectors and we'll be replaced by video game collectors or something else.

Iconic pieces will go up in price, but I'd be willing to bet money that the bulk of what we own will be worth less in real terms in the future. The potential longevity of Star Wars may actually lessen its appeal.


I completely agree with you on this - I just can't see vintage SW figures having the same appeal to future generations as they do to us; they'll have their own figures. I think there'll be a number of short-term collectors selling up in the next 2-3 years as Star Wars reaches saturation point, then once the current 40-somethings reach retirement there'll be another glut of people selling off their collections. I think this means prices'll peak in the next 2 years then either level out again or start to drop.

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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby Dannywhiteley » Fri Mar 03, 2017 1:34 pm

Look at it this way and see what you think.

If you collected something like vintage Action man or matchbox that as a toy line goes back years and years, but like me were born in the mid 70's would you only collect action man/matchbox from your own childhood or would you go (much) further back to earlier years of the line?

As vintage StarWars collectors we can only really look back as far as 1977 to when it all began, but if it did go back further where would you stop?

What I'm trying to say is this is how future generations of SW collectors might view vintage Star Wars toys. I think the serious collectors (that admittedly wil be a declining number) will tend to go right back to the beginning. Casual collectors might want a few they remember as kids, but the good stuff will always have a reasonably strong market.

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Re: Why is prices going up ?

Postby Wreck-It Ralph » Fri Mar 03, 2017 1:41 pm

This is a very uplifting thread especially to a new collector who has just spent a lot of money on 12, 20 and 30 backs in the last two months, I do hope they don't become worthless overnight :lol: :lol: :lol:
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