An online auction just pulled another piece of fake unopened product. This time, it was a 1970 Topps Baseball Rack Pack. Like the 1958 Topps Cello Pack forgeries I wrote about previously, there are many fake 1970 Topps Baseball Rack Packs on the market. In this post, I’ll summarize the characteristics of a legitimate pack and then show examples of some suspect packs at the end.
First, the header, which has its own cell, is yellow with red and white text. A legitimate 1970 Topps rack pack will have 54 cards in three cells and was originally 39 cents. The promotion code on the lower right says “1-991-93-01-0.”
The header should have a large circle punch hole. The cross-cut wasn’t put into production until around the summer of 1971 when the 4th series of 1971 Topps Rack Packs were released. Topps used that circular die-cut from the fall of 1968 through the summer of 1971. So stay away from packs with the cross-cut in those years, which of course includes all 1970 Topps Baseball Rack Packs. Again, if you see a 1970 Topps Rack Pack without a circular punch hole, it didn’t leave the Topps factory that way.
After the header, there are three more cells, each with 18 loose cards. 1970 Rack Packs were issued by series, but blended series also exist. No insert cards were included.
You should always be suspect of a pack that has too many stars on top. Plus, if the cards are in rough shape, question the pack. Why would they be in rough condition from the factory? As an aside, Topps Archives recalled that “approximately one half of the run in the first cell would usually appear in the third cell (sometimes upside down in relation to the other cards). Random cards that also appeared elsewhere in the rack would also appear upside down, usually on the front or back of a pocket. So maybe 20% of each rack contained duplicate cards.”
The seams between the cells of 1970 Topps Rack Packs are pretty wide, like a tire tread. Topps used heat roller seals, so if you zoom in, the lines between the packs are three lines of small dots. Many forgeries will use a heat press that shows as a solid straight line, and Topps didn’t use that method until a few years later.
Next, after 50 years, the cellophane should show some yellowing or tone and a bit of warping.
Here are examples of a few 1970 Topps Rack Packs that I would stay away from.
Thanks for reading. If you have any other information to share about 1970 Topps Rack Packs, please share it in the comments below, or let me know over on Twitter.