Saturday, February 21, 2009

Cracking Open a Graded Card - PSA

About a month ago, I described how to open a slabbed card graded by Beckett Vintage Grading. Today I'll describe how to uncrack a PSA graded card.

My 11 year old son did all the work and I took the pictures. We started with a 1959 Topps Run Preventers #237, featuring Gil McDougald, Bob Turley and Bobby Richardson. I plan to get this card signed by all three of them.

The PSA card was the easiest card we've cracked. It's much like the Beckett Vintage Grading slab, except the PSA slab doesn't have the inner plastic sleeve like the BVG slab.

We began by placing the card on its edge in a vise.

Place a narrow chisel on the seam on the edge of the card towards the top of the card, next to the PSA label. This way, if the chisel goes too far into the slab, it won't damage the card. Lightly tap the top of the chisel with a hammer.

The chisel will easily break through the seam. Tap the chisel lightly until it is about a half an inch into the slab.

Next, flip the slab over and place it back in the vise and repeat the previous procedure.

After this step, both sides of the slab next to the label will be split open.

At this point, remove the slab from the vise. You should be able to simply begin pulling the slab apart from the top.

The card is pretty loose within the slab, so be careful it doesn't fall out and on to a dirty floor as you pull it apart.

The whole process took less than five minutes. Be careful as you are breaking the plastic as small pieces can break and fly off. Wear some protective glasses to avoid injuring your eyes.

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