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Cataloging Patches

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My collection has become large enough to be substantial, to my wife! So i have begun photographing and cataloging the patches for the day the inevatable arrives. Now I am wondering what information should be included. I have started taking photos of each patch front and back, my plan is to create a PDF of all of the patches to include the aforementioned pictures, a short description of the patch, Purchase price, current value. location in the ryker mounts ( I have the ryker mounts labeled with a quick description of the patches and a case number) What else should be included so if that dreadful day comes and I predecease my wife she gets fair market value from the collection?

Thanks in advance


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Well in my opinion even if it is all very well documented as to type era branch of service etc etc , when it comes time to sell the collection it really will depend on the market at the time and if you can find a "reputable" dealer or a "true" collector that will be honest enough to pay you(her) what it is really worth , you know a "dealer" will underbid by a fairly large percentage , the better "sell" will be to a collector , but again that will depend on the market and the "Interest" of the collector on what he will be willing to pay reguardless of "value" .And you'll come up against the "cherry pickers" too that will only want "specific" items and not the whole collection,another thing you'll need to be prepared for.


I had a fairly large and good patch collection I had to sell and all the supposed "collectors" didn't want to pay anywhere near the real value , so when/if that time comes I do wish you very good luck on the sale .


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To piggy back on what Johnny said. If possible contact a few reputable dealers or collectors now and see if you can name them as points of contact for your spouse if so maybe even make some introductions so when the time comes everyone is not a stranger. Sounds like you are doing the hard work of identification, initial investment cost etc. You may also consider sorting E Bay and or similar sources for completed sales to see average sale prices and update the value of each piece as required every 6 months or year.

ASMIC 1729





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Thanks to both of you, please keep the comments coming, I do know a few reputable dealers to handle this. (I think)

Lookig forward to more comments, I can't be the only one thinking of this! From some of the pictures I have seen here on the forum my collection doesn't come near alot of others.



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For myself I tried to do what you are currently compiling, but gave up quickly because of the amount of time / effort to do it. I also stopped because I soon realized I was looking at the items as an "investment" and not as a collection to show and enjoy.


I have a very good friend (who is like a brother) that is the first person my wife / son are to contact if and when they want to sell. My friend is to have the opportunity to set aside any items he want for his collection and then he is to sell the rest the best he can. This is the same deal he has with me!


Also, forum member Teamski and I have discussed this issue a couple of times. I believe his plan is for his wife to place the items on ebay and let the "feeding frenzy" / market dictate the value.


Finally, this is an important thing to consider now. If we are truly the current caretakers of these items today, we should do our best to have these items end up with other collectors and not dealers in my personal opinion.



Sell and / or trade items: http://s1080.photobucket.com/albums/j335/36tex/Military Collectables For Sale or Trade/

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Have stuff organized and labeled. My Dad died suddenly in November and had over 2,000 patches unsorted in the envelopes and sacks where they had sat for more than 40-years for some. He had a copy of the order form and senders copy of the Money Order. He also had sacks with the sales slip in, 10 patches $2.50. He had tons of medals both US and foreign which were mostly in Riker mounts and bags of insignia. His inventory was boxes of scratch pad pages loose and some file cards in recipe boxes. He didn't think he needed a Will so I sorted through all the stuff (pulled out what I needed, my sister had it appraised and it will be deducted from my share of probate) and inventoried everything. The foreign stuff took forever. My sister auctioned everything, she just wanted to get it over. I recommend that stuff be labeled and having a usable inventory. I have been working on mine.



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... current value...

The hard part is current value. I have several collections, some militaria, some not. I have tried to assign a current value on the items with the inventory. But of course the value changes over time (hopefully increases). So unless you go back to it on a periodic basis and change the values, it will become outdated/undervalued. I tried this with some collections, but made note of when I placed those values on the items, and the source. That way if you do like I did, and not update them for several years, that everyone realizes when those values were current. I've kinda given up on trying to placing/updating values, like 36-tex stated:

...I soon realized I was looking at the items as an "investment" and not as a collection to show and enjoy...

I still try to keep my inventories up-to-date with pictures/scans of the items, but more for the enjoyment of the collection.

U.S. Air Force 1979-1986 ... Served in the Air Force Communications Command
Collecting U.S. Military Uniform Buttons and U.S. Air Force Communications Patches.

US Military Uniform Buttons Interesting Facts



Wanted: USAF Communications patches (link below)




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I scanned my collection...it does take time, but the sooner you start the sooner you will be close to being finished. Let's face it, you're not done collecting so you will never be done scanning. Scan 10 or 20 every weekend. Do this for yourself --- its great having my collection available digitally.


Or for your families needs:

1) Make photo records --- the easiest way is to brake your collection into 25 count lots and take a photo of each lot. (5 patches across/ 5 patches down)

Write the lot number on the back of the photo and/or name the digital photo by its lot number.


2) Make written records --- identify each lot number (Top of page) and list each patch with a one or two line description of information; leaving room for info of all patches associated with that lot. (Information you believe is important)


3) Identify your cherry pickers!!! --- if the patch is extremely rare, mark it as such. (Let the family know.)


I also believe it is better for the collectors to get the collection than dealers. So.......


Additional information you might want to provide is Collectors of interest....if your collection or certain parts of your collection was to be sold to somebody...note who you think those somebodies should be. (If you need my information...let me know.) :thumbsup:


Store this information with your patches so it can be found easily. --- Rick (Old B-1)

Always looking for Rare/Hard to find B-1, B-1A, and B-1B related patches.

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