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Thread: 1995 Alta Loma Cigar cards

  1. #31
    Member Doerrcollector's Avatar
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    Well just got a response from the seller---not exactly what I expected...he is right about Ybor city, he explains why we can't find any info in the cigars, and my cigar store owner Tampa swore up and down again today that he had indeed heard of Alta Loma and the cards back thenThe website and the shilling still makes this seem very suspicious but he's definitely done extensive homework if he's making it all up...

    "Hi Jeff,
    This is a consignment item, so I know mostly what the seller has told me:
    In my own words, these cards were made in 1995 for a company that went out of business before they really got started. A couple of marketing-oriented entrepreneurs wanted to hire some of the old Cuban-American stogie-rollers who were still around in a quarter of Tampa called Ybor City back then.
    They printed these cards, which are nicely done, and they made up a few boxes with some hand-rolled cigars, then used these examples in their efforts to get a big cigar company interested in the concept. (So at no time were they actually a retail item.) Their big idea was to bring back the cigar card, a great idea, right? But the cigar makers they presented them to didn't want to package athletes with their tobacco, because this could easily become a publicity nightmare. No sale, and the Alta Loma guys soon moved on and faded into the woodwork.
    The only other information I have is that Oscar Valdez (or Valdes) was one of the principals, and he might have been from Miami, not Tampa. My consignee purchased the cards in a storage locker auction several years ago.
    As for getting these listed by Beckett, I doubt that could happen anytime soon. limited editions and tiny printings by small outfits like this won't usually be listed in Becketts until they are 25-30 years old. With or without Beckett, I'm sure these are the most valuable cards made by anyone since 1995, just based on scarcity. Most of the Alta cards went to a dealer/collector in Alabama, and he is not interested in selling any of them at any price.
    I hope this information will be helpful.
    Best wishes, Jim"

    Idk.

    Thanks,
    Jeff

  2. #32
    Senior Member Hawk8's Avatar
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    wow, what now?
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  3. #33
    Senior Member DeliciousBacon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doerrcollector View Post
    Well just got a response from the seller---not exactly what I expected...he is right about Ybor city, he explains why we can't find any info in the cigars, and my cigar store owner Tampa swore up and down again today that he had indeed heard of Alta Loma and the cards back thenThe website and the shilling still makes this seem very suspicious but he's definitely done extensive homework if he's making it all up...

    "Hi Jeff,
    This is a consignment item, so I know mostly what the seller has told me:
    In my own words, these cards were made in 1995 for a company that went out of business before they really got started. A couple of marketing-oriented entrepreneurs wanted to hire some of the old Cuban-American stogie-rollers who were still around in a quarter of Tampa called Ybor City back then.
    They printed these cards, which are nicely done, and they made up a few boxes with some hand-rolled cigars, then used these examples in their efforts to get a big cigar company interested in the concept. (So at no time were they actually a retail item.) Their big idea was to bring back the cigar card, a great idea, right? But the cigar makers they presented them to didn't want to package athletes with their tobacco, because this could easily become a publicity nightmare. No sale, and the Alta Loma guys soon moved on and faded into the woodwork.
    The only other information I have is that Oscar Valdez (or Valdes) was one of the principals, and he might have been from Miami, not Tampa. My consignee purchased the cards in a storage locker auction several years ago.
    As for getting these listed by Beckett, I doubt that could happen anytime soon. limited editions and tiny printings by small outfits like this won't usually be listed in Becketts until they are 25-30 years old. With or without Beckett, I'm sure these are the most valuable cards made by anyone since 1995, just based on scarcity. Most of the Alta cards went to a dealer/collector in Alabama, and he is not interested in selling any of them at any price.
    I hope this information will be helpful.
    Best wishes, Jim"

    Idk.

    Thanks,
    Jeff
    He's lying, of course. So they only made a few boxes of these cigars, but made 50 copies each of at least 430 cards (the Doerr is card #430 )? And now they're all in the hands of a mysterious unnamed dealer in Alabama, who won't part with any of them (except the ones this guy is selling)? And they're the rarest cards made since 1995? That he happens to be selling (and shilling)? Pumping the price up to make these look even more in-demand and valuable? Nothing about that adds up.
    I'm DelBacon on Sportlots, tons of great cards!

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  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeliciousBacon View Post
    He's lying, of course.


    no , no , no.....he's not lying.....he's just reverse-engineering the back story on these beauties....
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  5. #35
    Member Doerrcollector's Avatar
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    Still waiting to hear back from my friends in the cigar industry on this---they are trying to dig up info on the names he mentioned. I'm doubtful they will find anything to back him up, but want to cross all my t's and dot all my I's so to speak before filling a claim.

    Thanks,
    Jeff

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    Have you heard back from you friends regarding these 1995 Alta Loma Cigar cards? If so will you post your information. Thank you.

  7. #37
    Junior Member Bob M's Avatar
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    Your friend in the cigar business has not been smoking the wrong kind of cigars, when he says he remembers this brand. I have 4 of these same kind of cards purchased in 1996 at Charlies Grocery on Sligh Ave at Rowlett Park Road. That year I was living in an apartment at 5912 N Central in Seminole Heights, and working as produce manager at Winn Dixie on Fowler and Nebraska Ave. Twice a week I had to go up to 30th St and Hillsboro Ave to place orders at the wholesale produce market in the early AM before work. From there I would head to the WD via 30th and Sligh, (it was a shortcut) and usually would stop at Charlies for coffee and a deviled crab on the way. I bought a few packs of these before I left Tampa to work for Albertsons back in Orlando in July of 96. It was 4 or 5 cigars and 1 card to a box I believe they sold for $5, which sounds cheap but it was pricey for me at the time. Maybe they could have been copied later on, but they were definitly sold in 1996 in Tampa, and who would copy a 1995 card anyway?

  8. #38
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    I hardly know where to begin.
    The original poster says he spoke with a local cigar dealer who clearly remembers the Alta Loma brand. There are others who do as well. During the years since this post was first published, I have been contacted through eBay by at least 10 different people who own one or more of these cards, and are interested in buying more of them or finding out what their card is worth. I didn't realize that this forum was where they obtained my eBay username. But, based on what I have heard and saved in my email, these cards were clearly made in 1995, and distributed locally in '95-96, just like I said they were at the beginning.
    I haven't been fortunate enough to obtain any of these cards in years, but the "mysterious dealer in Alabama" referred to has been slowly selling a few of them in the $50-100 range, as recently as last month, when he sold 2 of them for $60 and $80 on eBay. Search it yourself and see.
    The website cited is linked to me by the OP because it is hosted in a facility 70 miles away, in Houston. The fact is, more websites are hosted in Houston than in any other US city. It is the home of the largest private server company in the US (The Planet) and the world's largest shared hosting facility (Hostgator). There are many millions of websites hosted in Houston. About half of all US based websites are located in Texas, mostly in Houston, but also a lot of them in Dallas. And who buys hosting based on geography? Do you go down to the local hosting company? Hell no, you buy hosting online. You may have the option of US based hosting, but nobody hosts a website because it is located nearby. The very idea makes no sense.
    The total number of Alta Loma cards sold by me on eBay was 41 cards. I have been selling sports cards on eBay since 1998. That's 21+ years. During that time I have sold more than 500,000 cards. So the Alta Loma cards make up less than one-one hundredth of 1% of my sales. The notion that I would create a website containing over 100 pages filled with information regarding mostly Topps, Bowman, Fleer, etc. for the purpose of selling a few cards in 99 cent auctions is ridiculous.
    The original poster was offered a full refund, including the cost of return shipping. He chose to keep the card. Why? The offer still stands. In fact, my buyers know that I will refund the full purchase price on any card I sell, even if it is ten years later! But he chose not to return the card. If he is so convinced he was cheated, why doesn't he want his money back? That would be the normal response of anyone. There is something else at work here that he is not telling us. There must be some reason he won't accept a refund. Did he find out the truth - that these cards are as scarce as I said they were? Is he trying to make them questionable so he can buy them inexpensively? What is the true reason for this fictitious hatchet job?
    The accusation of shill bidding is also false. Over the years, eBay has developed measures that prevent this from happening. They have metrics which look at a number of factors: Location of bidders, their last names, their purchase history of similar items, their canceled or retracted bids, whether purchased items are shipped and delivered, and a lot more. I am not saying some shilling does not occur, but if you are going to shill, the shill bidder can only be used once or twice. There may be some shilling on items selling for hundreds or thousands of dollars, but c'mon, this was a 99 cent auction! And the two guys who bought most of the Alta Loma cards I sold paid full price, and the cards were shipped and delivered to them. They left positive feedback and both have periodically asked if I could find more of these cards for them.
    Now, the fact that the cards were unlicensed when they were issued. There is no necessity of licensing retired players regarding the MLBPA. The subjects of the Alta Loma cards are not members of the players association. Bobby Doerr never belonged to the MLBPA, because it didn't even exist. In addition, under copyright law, printing 50 of anything is lawful, and not considered an infringement. Further, I remember when the Berk Ross cards were not listed by Becketts because they were unlicensed. They remain unlicensed, but Beckett reconsidered after they found that collectors were paying out hundreds and thousands of dollars for them. And, as one post points out, Panini are also unlicensed.
    The OP also thinks there is something "fishy" about my using a PO Box as a return address. Sorry city slickers, but there are still places here in rural Texas where home mail delivery does not exist. You have to get a PO Box or you won't get any mail. In fact, I just started getting home delivery of mail in 2016, and was pretty thankful about it. As soon as home delivery was available, I changed my eBay return address to my street address. Furthermore, there is nothing sinister about any eBay seller using a PO Box as a return address if what he sells has value. Why would a person who owns a half-million dollars worth of sports cards want to let strangers know the street address where they are located? Get real.
    And finally, the allegation that I sell "home made" cards made on an inkjet printer. Absolutely untrue. Every card I have ever sold was printed by a printing company on a printing press. "Offset litho" means printed on an old-style printing press. All Topps, Bowman, UD, Fleer, etc are offset litho. Period. I have never sold inkjet creations. If anyone out there has an inkjet creation printed and sold by me, I will pay $5,000 cash for it. There will be no takers, because it has never happened.
    So, after 21 years selling on eBay, following a distinguished 20 year career in the US Navy, I find my good reputation being irreparably damaged by this site, the OP, and others. The OP is no longer on eBay, but I am. If I were doing anything but legitimate business, I would have been kicked off eBay a long time ago.
    This post was first brought to my attention several weeks ago, and I was horrified to find that it has been out there on the internet harming my legitimate business for almost five years. I have copied the entire thread and the information regarding the OP and the site owner, and am planning to consult an attorney and see if damages are in order. There is no way to calculate the monetary damage it has done to my business, but I am sure it must be considerable, given the number of impressions this site gets.
    The internet is a great thing, but it can be used for harmful purposes, whether intentionally or out of ignorance or malice. Fortunately for me, I have collected enough information to prove that these cards were issued in 1995, that there was never any shill bidding, and that the OP was given the opportunity to return the item for a full refund, but chose not to. That's all I need. Now, I just have to find an attorney who will take a case in Tampa Florida against the OP and against the owner of this forum.
    I want to assure anyone reading this who has bought from me in the past or who is considering buying from me: My money-back guarantee is good for life. If you bought it from me 20 years ago, I will still issue a 100% refund. That still goes for you as well, Doerrcollector.
    Best wishes, GrouchyOldMan

  9. #39
    Member Doerrcollector's Avatar
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    1995 Alta Loma Cigar cards

    Quote Originally Posted by grouchyoldman View Post
    The original poster was offered a full refund, including the cost of return shipping. He chose to keep the card. Why? The offer still stands. In fact, my buyers know that I will refund the full purchase price on any card I sell, even if it is ten years later! But he chose not to return the card. If he is so convinced he was cheated, why doesn't he want his money back? That would be the normal response of anyone. There is something else at work here that he is not telling us. There must be some reason he won't accept a refund. Did he find out the truth - that these cards are as scarce as I said they were? Is he trying to make them questionable so he can buy them inexpensively? What is the true reason for this fictitious hatchet job?
    Well my goodness this sure is some nice popcorn to read on a sunny Thursday afternoon here in Tampa

    1st off- my only intention initially in posting was to gather information on a card I was excited about. Only later did we discover it was a custom card and I added the note to warn others. Because thatís what we do in this hobby- warn our friends of people trying to pass cards off as legit. My track record here and across the hobby speaks for itself- feel free to ask around. I hold no sinister motives, and only have a passion for collecting. However, shilling is a drain on the hobby and that whatís really made me mad.

    2nd- no where in the message I posted did you ever offer a refund. I donít recall one ever being offered, but in reality without the posts in this thread I wouldnít remember many of the exact details of any of this because itís been 5 YEARS man. In addition, I am still on eBay- account is still active. I just verified I have zero messages from you beyond the initial one I posted.

    Obviously you couldnít of worried about these too much and about it affecting your business over the years because this has been the top 2 or 3 post on google for a number of years.

    To this day, I still have not found a single person in Tampa or anywhere else who can verify the story on these or about Alta Loma. I even went to check for business incorporations at city hall a few years back and found nothing for any company ever existing with that name.

    Provide me with verifiable information and I will edit the post to reflect that. None of what you have written about above is legit or verifiable, and I look at it as nothing more than you trying to continue a lie you started many years ago instead of just selling these as custom cards, which I still probably would of bought. The issue was not you selling them, the issue is you have gone to great lengths to try to make these seem like they are real and not custom. The hobby deserves to know that they are custom, as well as the fact that shilling probably took place.

    Lastly, I have been on and off in the hobby as life has happened over the years. However, the one post that continues to attract attention is this one, mainly from the [MENTION=12065]Ernest1919[/MENTION] fella a few posts above. His only post ever has been on this thread, and he messages me every 6 months inquiring about the cards. Would love to know where he is located in the US and what his story is...

    The posts stands and I think [MENTION=1720]cgilmo[/MENTION] is fine with that until new information come to light.

    Thanks,
    Jeff

    P.S. I have kept the card all these years because to be honest the story about this is worth the $43 dollars I paid originally, even though it was shilled. Thanks for giving me a great one for telling around the cigar lounge with a scotch on the rocks. Cheers 🥂!





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    Last edited by Doerrcollector; 05-16-2019 at 05:56 PM.

  10. #40
    Member banjar's Avatar
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    Nice response Jeff. It blows my mind that this guy comes out of the woodwork after almost 5 years to stir things up - and by the way, to reactivate this dead thread for all to see! I for one never knew about any of this garbage before now. I'd add more, but Deliciousbacon's post above sums it up better than I could.

    And finally, this:

    "Now, I just have to find an attorney who will take a case in Tampa Florida against the OP and against the owner of this forum."

    Oh god. You sir?! Just shut up.
    Collecting Roberto Alomar. Over 4000 unique cards, but always looking for those I'm missing!

  11. #41
    Senior Member Brewer Andy's Avatar
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    Ha, forgot all about this thread. One things for damn certain: there sure as EFF wasnít anyone even remotely considering serial numbering a card as low as 50 in 1996. Thatís the biggest damn tell here


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  12. #42
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    For those of you who enjoy reading threads like this, I stumbled on an awesome story on a BO thread recently.

    About 5 years ago a collector had outed this guy Tony Podsada on his blog for selling stacks of obvious forgeries, like Mantle autos etc. Then Podsada got on the comments for a long back-and-forth about how all his stuff was legit, and how he was being slandered, and how he was going to sue, yada yada. It was classic pathological lying, dissembling, and accusing, internet-style. What we have here in this resurrected thread is not the same thing, but I am at least smelling whiffs of a similar stench.

    https://live.autographmagazine.com/f...cchi-certified

    Fast forward to 2018, and Podsada gets a police escort away from his table at the National for selling his forgeries...

    https://www.sportscollectorsdaily.co...ny-autographs/

    Here's the BO thread

    https://www.blowoutforums.com/showth...hlight=podsada
    Last edited by banjar; 05-16-2019 at 06:16 PM.
    Collecting Roberto Alomar. Over 4000 unique cards, but always looking for those I'm missing!

  13. #43
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    Next season on Sneaky Pete......
    Look, I'm gonna be honest with you. I really need a job. And I will take any position, as long as it doesn't involve having sex with old ladies for money or bear traps. Those are my two bugaboos. While mulling over my resume feel free to check out my baseball card collection, it's small and simple, kinda like me - >>>>> https://s822.photobucket.com/user/JDf...ds%20n%20stuff


  14. #44
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    For some reason now I can't get the name of the band Aldo Nova out of my head.

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  15. #45
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    i think we should sic cardcop on him and let them butt heads ....might keep em both occupied for a few months and would likely result in several classic threads along the way....
    I collect any and all South Carolina Gamec0cks in any sport including players and coaches .
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