AFA these days....love em?..or errrr..other?

Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by TheMint1980, Jul 1, 2012.

  1. TheMint1980

    TheMint1980 Member

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    Ok,

    So I've been sending pieces off to AFA here and there for many years....mainly just for the case protection aspect, and 3 rd party photos and verification for potential resale down the road. I've never been too hung up on the grades as long as they make some kind of logical sense.

    Here's the thing....these days, their cases are awesome, their customer service is great overall, but their grade consistency as of late has just been horrid. Ive been at this hobby a while. I know how AFA grades their toys in regards to conditional aspect, but the things they are pointing out as of recent, in regards to flaws, aspects that may downgrade a piece, etc, are frankly, ludicrous.

    Ive run into this multiple times now with them in the last few months.

    One example is A MIB/ opened to inspect contents, Optimus Prime i sent off to be graded MIB, AFA qualified.

    The toy was in a sealed box, untouched. The box was rough, so i opened it to inspected it. Prime was flawless and brand new. Perfect paint, chrome, factory stickers, all accessories on trees, sealed in baggies..the works. I decide he's a good AFA Q candidate and send him off.

    I get him back and AFA has graded the toy a 70, 80, 80 That's a 70 box, ( understandable, the outer box had some rough edges) an 80 window...( also understandable...window looked fine but not minty/ new), and an 80 for the mint, untouched Prime?..( whaaaaa?...hold the phone).

    So....I email AFA, and they explain that a big reason the toy sub graded an 80 was because his box removal instructions , which are held to the inner styro by a single piece of tape, had come undone from the upper left corner of the box due to dried/ aged tape and had fallen to the bottom of the tray. So...to recap, in part, they downgraded the physical, perfect, untouched toy....made of plastic and metal....based on a completely separate piece of paper that had become detached from the inside of the box??? To further this maddening little hang up, I found an AFA 85 ( red label/ factory sealed ) prime on ebay today, where the same leaflet had become detached, and they graded that one An 80, 85, 90.... A 90 figure! See ebay item 290720905211....and in that case, the leaflet is physically blocking the truck.

    Meanwhile...they're sub grading my untouched Prime an 80 on the toy...then assigning 90 s to out of box loose graded Primes with their decals applied, and parts loose/ off their sprues? ..for more crazy, contradictory examples... see EBay items 350570869579, and 160803926534.

    This is just 1 of several maddening examples in the last few months, but I wanted to post here and see if anyone else wanted to chime in with their experiences, good, bad, or indifferent as of late with the ol AFA....specifically in regards to consistency.

    Ive never seen it quite this wonky before.
     
  2. firehawc_69

    firehawc_69 cloppers = ignore list

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    AFA is nothing but a scam. The "grading" aspect of it doesn't follow any true standard (of which there is none), so you'd be better off just getting a protective case on your own if you feel the need. All AFA does is artificially inflate the value to the point that nobody can 1) afford it, and B) want it. Then when you can't sell it for what it's "worth", you drop the price and feel like you lost money. The only ones who benefit from AFA grading is AFA.
     
  3. seali_me

    seali_me Well-Known Member

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    ^

    Like the above poster.
     
  4. Fallout

    Fallout Well-Known Member

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    i don't get all the hype for it. they give your toy a 'rating' which, according to what i've heard is bullshit and a half, and put your toy in a plastic case. suddenly it's worth ten times the price.
     
  5. Scantron

    Scantron Well-Known Member

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    I don't really see the appeal of it, would never have anything graded myself and would never buy an AFA item. But if people want to waste their money on it, that's they're prerogative and I'm not going to get worked up about AFA's existence.
     
  6. Might Gaine

    Might Gaine The Devil Express

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    Man, does every AFA thread have to turn into this? The stuff you guys are saying is totally unrelated to what the original poster said.

    Them downgrading the figure for the piece of paper floating around is pretty dumb. I've definitely sent in a Prime to AFA that had that issue, and it did not get an 80 toy grade. Something like half of the sealed Primes have that issue, too..

    If you want a good discussion of your problem, you should join the AFA TF Social Group on TFW. Clearly people can't help but bash AFA for every reason under the sun in these public threads...
     
  7. clintfca

    clintfca G1 Inspired

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    I've never sent anything to AFA but I love their acrylic casing and buy the CGA bottom-sliding cases instead. IMHO AFA should have just stuck with grading sealed figures. Now that they're open to grading opened and even loose figures without boxes I think it opened a whole can of inconsistency.

    I myself consider MISB G1 Transformers 'worth' sealing in a case of plastic for protection and preservation (there's something about seeing a 20+ year old toy that looks like it just came off the shelf on day 1 that gets to me). But if you hate the cost of grading/grading system but love the casing, I would suggest their CGA bottom sliding cases that they sell. Yeah it's not completely sealed but that may be positive or negative depending on what type of collector you are.
     
  8. TheMint1980

    TheMint1980 Member

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    I posted here looking for some insight. I'm relieved in some regard to see every comment thus far being skeptical to say the least, in regards to afa, since they are technically in the wrong on many issues. I can see...their reputation precedes them in some ways, but agree, the comments thus far don't seem to be from people with personal experiences or an in depth education as to their so called process.

    Might, this forum you mention, do you have a link? I'm having trouble finding it. Also, I know you're a big afa proponent. Is this forum an open minded, free reign place...or would I be joining a group and posting in an area where the vast majority have drank just a bit too much of the ol afa cool aid?

    I posted HERE in hopes of honest,open , public opinion.
     
  9. seali_me

    seali_me Well-Known Member

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  10. opt1musaber

    opt1musaber Victory Saber's Recruit

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    I never had any problems with AFA. However, as a coincidence, I did come across an article about vintage sealed Star Wars figures and AFA a few weeks ago:

    U Grade | powerofthetoys.com

    I know it's not Transformers and packaging is different, but it does make you think about their practices and they are certainly questionable imo. After reading through it made me look at AFA in a whole new way and maybe for you too.
     
  11. bny888

    bny888 バグバイト

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    Personally, I would rather have a bad condition MOSC/MISB TF with a low AFA grade than having them open it and U Grade it.
     
  12. opt1musaber

    opt1musaber Victory Saber's Recruit

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    Their grading actually requires them opening certain MISB figures. I have an AFA graded U Predaking(first reissue) and both sides of the box looked to be opened. I guess they had to seeing it has no see-through window, but I did ponder on it for a while, why open something that essentially is untouched...

    My thinking now is, if you have a figure in 'perfect' condition be it MIB/MISB, buy yourself a UV protecting clear case, or better yet, just buy a display case and save yrself the trouble of getting AFA graded stuff.
     
  13. 3.8TransAM

    3.8TransAM 1989 Turbo Trans AM

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    All this crap will blow up in everyone's face.

    It's all crap.

    Face it AFA is "in" right now. It's cool.

    Now lets go look at muscle cars, baseball cards, comic books, they all have busts and boom times, its finding out where the bubble is as to what actually matter.

    I can go on to housing or the economy as well.

    I will laugh when it does, its just when.
     
  14. Haloid1177

    Haloid1177 Hey, That's Pretty Good

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    I never liked AFA. Don't see the point, and I think the price increases on AFA graded figures is just ridiculous.
     
  15. Gingerchris

    Gingerchris Telly-headed Tyrant

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    With a thread title that says 'AFA these days... love em?..or errr..other' means the thread is open to people being allowed to express their negative opinions about AFA, regardless of if the content of the first post deals with that or not. Many people just read the thread title and reply to that. They shouldn't of course, but then maybe a thread title that better reflected the OP's actual topic should've been used, something like 'AFA Grading Inconsistency' or whatever.

    I mean read this:
    The OP is asking for experiences, good bad or indifferent. Okay, maybe there are more people in here just slamming AFA that have never personally dealt with them, but AFA is one of those topics that will always bring in people not glowing with praise for it (like KOs), so some is to be expected.

    You could've easily just posted for the OP to join the AFA TF Social Group for a glowing discussion of the matter in a safe closed community without feeling the need to have a dig at people only following what the title of the thread and general gist of the opening post asks of them.
    But like you said, it's a public thread. Put something out into the public then expect these responses from the public, as is their right.

    Personally I'll never AFA anything because they're not an official grading authority and their grading seems to be inconsistant. I have no problem with other people using them or collecting AFA graded items. I'm still interested in the subject in passing though, which is why I came in here to read. I certainly wasn't intending to post anything supporting it or not.
     
  16. TheMint1980

    TheMint1980 Member

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    Well put Gingerchris.

    I'll also try the "tandem" approach and the AFA forum as well as this thread as one user suggested. I think there have been several great, not necessarily negative, but insightful responses to this thread at this juncture. I appreciate you guys taking the time to post your opinions, good, bad, or indifferent.
     
  17. Malach Ra

    Malach Ra TFW2005 Supporter

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    Are you kidding me? Its the "in" thing to do right now? Actually, AFA toys had a bigger draw about 4-5 years ago, when the first AFA80 Megs pulled in over 4k. Its not going away. The lower grade, run of the mill toys are actually cheaper, but your high grade stuff will always be popular and demand a high price tag by the people who collect them. Its all about the high grade for some, all about have a sealed AFA collectin for others, some people just want a toy graded inside an acrylic case. These toys will not go bust anytime soon.

    To the OP, just hit up the AFA group as others have said. Lot of good dudes in there will to be informative without all of the dislike and hate.
     
  18. chrisr291

    chrisr291 Master of the Unknown

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    Ebay:
    I don't think I'd want to AFA U loose figures that were once MISB, but I'd LOVE to own a AFA MISB G1 Megatron and Prime. However, I'm not going to spend four figures on it so that probably won't happen.

    Still, I can see the appeal for this service:2c: 
     
  19. Might Gaine

    Might Gaine The Devil Express

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    The group has other AFA collectors in it, and people do have bad experiences sometimes, and they don't sugarcoat it. And unlike a lot of people posting in this thread, they actually have experience sending in toys to get graded, rather than complaining about a service they've never used...
     
  20. Might Gaine

    Might Gaine The Devil Express

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    I can take digs at people for posting the same crap over and over. It's a totally legitimate complaint :) 
     

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