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  How did you start collecting space stuff? (Page 1)

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Author Topic:   How did you start collecting space stuff?
em8g16
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Posts: 13
From: Spain
Registered: Dec 2017

posted 01-02-2018 02:34 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for em8g16   Click Here to Email em8g16     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
How did you all start your collections?

I have just started so I am very interesting on how you began, why, what were your first items, etc.

As a college student I don't have much money. This added to me being in Spain results in it being difficult to grow my small collection. I have always been interested in space exploration. A couple years ago I started building rocket models then I added two or three replica patches. Finally, last year (now 2 years ago as it was in 2016) I managed to buy a special LIFE magazine from the Apollo 11 landing and sent and received a personalized signed copy of Gene Cernan's book! This is by far the item I value the most. I know it's not much of a collection, even more after seeing all those signed photos and flown items many of you have, but it is all I can afford by now.

So that is it for me, what about you?

capoetc
Member

Posts: 2038
From: Plano TX (USA)
Registered: Aug 2005

posted 01-02-2018 04:40 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for capoetc   Click Here to Email capoetc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Welcome to collectSPACE!

I started collecting about 25 years ago when I saw an ad in Air&Space Smithsonian for an upcoming Regency-Superior auction. My interest in the space program goes back to my childhood in the 1960’s-70’s.

You do not have an email listed on your profile, but if you will contact me via my email, I would be happy to send you as a gift some extra items from my collection. I only ask that you not sell them right away and that, at some time in the future when your collection grows, "pay it forward" by giving some extras to another collector who is just starting out. Cheers!

em8g16
Member

Posts: 13
From: Spain
Registered: Dec 2017

posted 01-02-2018 04:50 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for em8g16   Click Here to Email em8g16     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you very much! I think it should now be updated. I'm not planning on selling anything of my collection, don't worry. I see this as a hobby, not a means of earning money, but of spending it! (Once I have it )

Out of interest, what were your first items in your collection when you started?

Buel
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Posts: 518
From: UK
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 01-02-2018 06:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Buel   Click Here to Email Buel     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by capoetc:
I would be happy to send you as a gift some extra items from my collection.
What a lovely gesture!

capoetc
Member

Posts: 2038
From: Plano TX (USA)
Registered: Aug 2005

posted 01-02-2018 07:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for capoetc   Click Here to Email capoetc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Ok I see your email now. I am on a trip, returning home tomorrow ... I will be in touch then.

Skythings
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Posts: 218
From:
Registered: Jun 2014

posted 01-02-2018 07:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Skythings   Click Here to Email Skythings     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Remember, every single person who collects started where you are. When I first started collecting I made many mistakes and foolish purchases and I was not very focused at all. My suggestion is to stay focused on one or two aspects of collecting and zero in on those. As time moves forward you will become pretty proficient and conversant with those one or two collecting interests and soon you will be more confident to let the collecting thrusters move you into a higher orbit when your ready. It takes time and yes, some mistakes to educate yourself with this hobby.

As you can see there are some wonderful people on this site whom are incredibly helpful. I agree it is not good etiquette to sell items gifted to you. Trading is an excellent way to grow your collection and in my opinion an excellent way to network with other collectors. There are some items I intend to never sell or trade, but over time as your focus develops you may discover those items you are so attached too can be an excellent currency to your next must have item.

Have fun!

Wehaveliftoff
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Posts: 2091
From:
Registered: Aug 2001

posted 01-02-2018 08:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Wehaveliftoff   Click Here to Email Wehaveliftoff     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I can honestly say my first "collectible" was a signed WSS (white spacesuit) Neil Armstrong portrait he was kind enough to send me to my college SUPO box when he was teaching at University of Cincinnati.

It has some water damage from a house fire whereby all the moon and above his head is gone, but the rest of the WSS is good as gold (or fools gold? now). The signature area looks nearly as good as the day I received it in the mail as it has rarely seen the light of day.

So I guess you could say I started near the top.

Silent Sea
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Posts: 33
From:
Registered: Mar 2015

posted 01-02-2018 08:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Silent Sea     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
One fun thing I did is look on websites to find used space related books. Often you can find reasonably priced items — sometimes you will get a pleasant surprise and find that they are signed!

I also agree with Skythings about focusing on a couple aspects of collecting.

There are a lot of friendly and knowledgeable people here, so you've definitely come to the right place to talk space collections.

randy
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Posts: 1924
From: West Jordan, Utah USA
Registered: Dec 1999

posted 01-02-2018 09:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for randy   Click Here to Email randy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Welcome to collectSPACE. You'll find out this the best website for space collectors.

I've been collecting for 51 years this year. It doesn't seem like that long. The first things I collected were an autographed picture of Don Lind and some Gemini photos he sent. And the rest, as they say, is history. I have paid it forward in several ways, and will continue to do so after I'm gone.

This has been well worth the time and money, as you'll find out. Welcome to a fantastic hobby!

SkyMan1958
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Posts: 724
From: CA.
Registered: Jan 2011

posted 01-02-2018 10:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SkyMan1958   Click Here to Email SkyMan1958     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Welcome Aboard!!!

This is a GREAT place.

If you are unsure about something, ask questions here, and there's a good chance someone will know the answer. Take it slow, and read, and you'll miss most, but likely not all, of the pitfalls associated with collecting space memorabilia. Everybody makes mistakes, and you may well over time blow some money on counterfeits, or overpay, or... etc. It is VERY common to make some collecting mistakes along the way.

Just remember the single most important thing... HAVE FUN!!!

Mike_The_First
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Posts: 427
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2014

posted 01-02-2018 11:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike_The_First   Click Here to Email Mike_The_First     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
With regard to autographs, signed books are, generally speaking, going to be cheaper than photos. That's what I started with.

There are, of course, exceptions to that rule (signed copies Mike Collins' "Carrying the Fire" and Dave Scott's "Two Sides of the Moon," to name two, will generally run you roughly the same as a signed photo from the same), but, for the most part, it's a great way to get cheaper signatures from the likes of Al Shepard, Jim Lovell, Al Worden, Jim Irwin, and so on.

Signed smaller paper items, like covers & SpaceShots cards, are also generally less expensive than photos/lithos, plus, in your case, they have the added benefit of being cheaper to ship than books.

A number of post-Skylab astronauts still sign mail free of charge, though for anyone before that, if you're on a budget and aren't looking for anything too special, you're probably better off acquiring through the secondary market.

With regard to flown material, between your budget and your location, that's a bit tougher.

Shuttle pieces are significantly cheaper than flown pieces from preceding spacecraft, but your options in that department are limited by ITAR (and dealer misconceptions about ITAR).

Your best option in that regard, both in terms of budget and accessibility, are the medallions or pins that "contain flown metal." The amount of flown metal in each is negligible (someone, I believe Robert, previously referred to it as "symbolic" in another thread), but they're generally affordable, they look cool, and they make for great starter pieces. I know it's not the same as having a display with an actual flown piece encased in lucite, but it's a fraction of the cost and still pretty nice to look at.

I know you asked how we got started, rather than for advice, but what I'm suggesting is how I got started: a lot of signed books (mostly secondhand and personalized to other people), a few Manned Flight Awareness (MFA) and commemorative flown metal medallions, and a not insignificant amount of luck.

em8g16
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Posts: 13
From: Spain
Registered: Dec 2017

posted 01-03-2018 03:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for em8g16   Click Here to Email em8g16     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you all for such a warm welcome. I'm blown away by it. I had been looking at the forum before but this goes beyond anything I could ever think of. I've been reading all your advice, it has been very useful and I'll be sure to follow it all.

Also, you have some very awesome stories like Wehaveliftoff, starting with an Armstrong signed portrait! And now I finally now what a WSS is.

As I said before, I've been looking around a bit, although I still don't understand why some things are more expensive than others when at first sight I'd thought it should be the other way round. I'll probably get the hang of it with some more experience.

Tykeanaut
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Posts: 2151
From: Worcestershire, England, UK.
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 01-03-2018 05:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tykeanaut   Click Here to Email Tykeanaut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The very beginning? ...read newspapers from neighbours for my scrapbook, circa 1968.

jimsz
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From:
Registered: Aug 2006

posted 01-03-2018 06:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for jimsz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Around Apollo 10 a friend and I started writing to the astronauts and received 8x10 lithos, a decent number of autopens and enough actual autographs to cover the majority of the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo astronauts.

I purchased and traded through the years but my start only cost me postage (well my parents) for many years. Dave Scott was a favorite as he replied a number times, Jim Irwin was another one.

Lunar rock nut
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Posts: 864
From: Oklahoma city, Oklahoma U.S.A.
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 01-03-2018 07:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Lunar rock nut   Click Here to Email Lunar rock nut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Welcome to collectSPACE. As a child of the sixties, I followed all of the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo launches and missions whenever televised. At age 14 I was able to travel courtesy of my parents to see Apollo 15's launch. During all those years it never dawned on me to obtain autographs.

In the mid 90's I was doing some remodeling on my neighbor's house and I noticed he had a stack of NASA issued poster boards of shuttle missions. I then discovered his sister is Shannon Lucid and he let me pick one of them. I asked for the STS-76 one with flown patches and from that point it was on.

tnperri
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Posts: 390
From:
Registered: Jun 2011

posted 01-03-2018 08:45 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for tnperri   Click Here to Email tnperri     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My first item were medals from the first launch/crash from the New Mexico Spaceport by ZeroG. But I didn't really start collecting space related items until about six years later. First it was space related silver medals and then flown melted-metal medals as I learned more about them.

fredtrav
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Posts: 1532
From: Birmingham AL
Registered: Aug 2010

posted 01-03-2018 10:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for fredtrav   Click Here to Email fredtrav     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I started collecting Presidential signed books. But they were expensive and for the most part boring (if I buy a book, I should be able to read it). One day I had bought several books and there was a signed copy of "Apollo 13" by James Lovell. I read it and was hooked. Mush better than a signed book by an ex president. Started buying only space books.

I second the recommendation about focusing what you want to collect. I started with books and then got hooked on autographed. Veered off into patches, but quickly realized I was doing it wrong. Stopped the patches and concentrated on on books and autographs. Have a few flown items and a lot of miscellaneous stuff now as well.

Check various countries' Amazon sites for space books for example. Their is a list on this site of astronaut authored books. You can get lucky and find signed copies there. I got Harrison Schmitt's book for $10 as it had a blemish, the author's signature. A copy of Edgar Mitchell's "The Way of the Explorer" for about $2.50 inscribed by him. You can find deals if you look persistently.

Good luck and have fun.

Glint
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Posts: 997
From: New Windsor, Maryland USA
Registered: Jan 2004

posted 01-03-2018 11:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Glint   Click Here to Email Glint     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My first space collectible was given to me by a second cousin. He had driven from home to Lincoln, Nebraska to attend a public event at the state capitol building featuring a display of the Faith 7 capsule. I had begged to go along but was too young. My mother didn't want me riding around town with a young teenage driver in the years before seatbelts, and I doubt my cousin wanted a youngster tagging along with him. But afterwards, he returned to the house and gave me a B/W photo print of a publicity portrait of Cooper, like the one below:

I cannot remember if Cooper himself attended the event or not. In any event the photo was unsigned.

yeknom-ecaps
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Posts: 609
From: Northville MI USA
Registered: Aug 2005

posted 01-03-2018 11:45 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for yeknom-ecaps   Click Here to Email yeknom-ecaps     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My dad would drive me to one of the local schools that had a small planetarium with monthly shows. One of the other kids that also regularly attended gave me Apollo 13 and Skylab recovery ship covers and invited me to ride our bicycles over to the local stamp store. Now, many years later, I am able to contribute to the Space Cover of the Week posting series in the Stamps & Covers forum.

You can have fun collecting Spanish related space stamps and covers. El Arenosillo test Centre (CEDEA) is the name of a rocket launch site for suborbital rockets for atmospheric soundings, located near Mazagón in Spain. With its first launch in 1966. There is the Madrid Deep Space Station (DSS) for deep space missions — Apollo and unmanned missions like Pioneer and Voyager. The manned and unmanned tracking sites for the orbital missions — Mercury, Gemini through space shuttle, and unmanned satellites with sites in Madrid and the Grand Canary Islands. Unmanned satellite cooperation, like the 1974 launch cover from Vandenberg AFB in California for INSAT joint US-Spain satellite.

Space covers like these can easily be found on sites like eBay or through dealers like Artifact Cloud. Spain has issued a number of space and astronomy stamps as well. They are inexpensive and are a great way to document Spain's involvement in space history. Have fun!

Mike_The_First
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Posts: 427
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2014

posted 01-03-2018 12:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike_The_First   Click Here to Email Mike_The_First     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by em8g16:
I still don't understand why some things are more expensive than others...
Asking prices don't always have a connection to what the piece is actually worth. There are a number of sellers on eBay and the like who see "Space" and think "$$$$" — you'd think they'd realize that there's a reason that nobody has bought the stuff after relisting it for years on end, but if that's how they want to do things, that's their business.

Even prices that pieces sell at don't always correlate to what an educated collector would pay for them. It's the same phenomena as the above, but with the buyer thinking "$$$$" instead of the seller.

In other cases, it just doesn't make a lot of sense, and one learns to accept it, never actually figuring it out.

After some time, especially in this community, you'll get the hang of it.

quote:
Originally posted by fredtrav:
You can get lucky and find signed copies there.
I don't know if I ever told this story on this board before or not, but I had an idea for a great inscription that I wanted from Gene Cernan in his book, so I set out to get a copy to send him with that request.

What I thought would be a really simple purchase ("Amazon, Like New, a couple dollars + shipping") turned into a bit of a joke, as the first copy I ordered showed up signed in black Sharpie. I didn't want to send him an already signed book, and I really wanted him to sign a copy just for me, so I ordered again. Same thing. Then a third time: same thing. It wasn't until my fourth purchase that I finally got an unsigned copy of the book (which, thanks to Captain Cernan, was signed within the month).

Bargains are definitely out there if you know where to look and what to look for (and have a decent amount of luck). To that end, this community is an invaluable resource.

em8g16
Member

Posts: 13
From: Spain
Registered: Dec 2017

posted 01-03-2018 06:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for em8g16   Click Here to Email em8g16     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It is amazing to see all these stories! It must have been great to be able to write to all the MGA astronauts and receive autographs back. It is a shame that they don't do it any more due to some greedy people and that these older astronauts are starting to pass away.
quote:
Originally posted by yeknom-ecaps:
You can have fun collecting Spanish related space stamps and covers.
Thanks for the idea, I'll definitely look into it!

Robert Pearlman
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Posts: 38628
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 01-03-2018 06:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Along similar lines, Spanish astronaut Pedro Duque is expected to fly again, according to the European Space Agency. There might be opportunities to collect memorabilia related to his flight locally in Spain. You might also write him; perhaps you can strike up a conversation via mail (I know someone else who did that with another ESA astronaut and was ultimately invited to his launch).

I started collecting (in earnest) when I was in college and like others have said, I learned quickly that focusing on one or two types of items (or topics) really helped in building up a collection.

You have already done the best thing you could do as a new collector — by reaching out and joining the community of collectors and enthusiasts worldwide. It's a great group of people from all walks of life who share a common passion.

Jurg Bolli
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Posts: 855
From: Albuquerque, NM
Registered: Nov 2000

posted 01-03-2018 07:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jurg Bolli   Click Here to Email Jurg Bolli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My dad was working in a large jewelry store in Switzerland that had some agreement with a restaurant to send folks to each other if they asked. When Armstrong visited Lucerne in 1972 he went to the restaurant and signed a brochure of theirs. My dad knew the owner of the restaurant and asked her for the brochure for me since I was fascinated by Apollo. That was my first item, I treasure it.

SpaceAholic
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Posts: 4081
From: Sierra Vista, Arizona
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 01-03-2018 07:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SpaceAholic   Click Here to Email SpaceAholic     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
I learned quickly that focusing on one or two types of items (or topics) really helped in building up a collection.
Haven't learned that lesson yet on this end... waiting for it to happen!

Mike_The_First
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Posts: 427
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2014

posted 01-03-2018 07:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike_The_First   Click Here to Email Mike_The_First     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by em8g16:
...these older astronauts are starting to pass away.
Of those that are still with us, by my count, we're down to zero Mercury, 8 Gemini, and 18 Apollo. Given the cross over (every living Gemini astronaut was also an Apollo astronaut), it's a total, again, by my count, of 18 MGA astronauts who are still alive.

Of those 18, a few are in poor health, and the youngest is 81 years old.

At that point, combined with how easy the Internet makes things for collectors, it ends up, understandably, being too much for them to deal with, so most don't.

That said, a few do still sign by mail (Cunningham, Bean, Haise, Worden[?], and Duke), but not for free. Worden, if he still signs, does it via Farthest Reaches, Cunningham and Duke have stores on their websites, Haise signs to benefit INFINITY Science Center, and Bean's address and fee information is under "Resources" on here.

Of them, the cheapest is Haise at $50 each or three for $100, which is still a decent bit of money when you're on a budget. Generally speaking, you'll find better deals for all of them on the secondary market if you're not looking for a special item or special inscription or anything like that.

Of those that don't sign mail anymore, a few do paid signings that offer send in opportunities, but, again, unless you need a special item/inscription, prices on those are generally going to be a lot higher than the going market rate.

And, of course, for the majority of MGA astronauts, the only option is the secondary market, since they're no longer with us to sign anything at any price.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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Posts: 3284
From: Toms River, NJ
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 01-03-2018 09:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Have to remember, too, that the shuttle astronauts are getting up there in age. Anna Lee Fisher is in her 60s, and she was one of the youngest TFNGs.

As for how I got started, I just did. Hoot Gibson and Deke Slayton and Georgy Grechko were the first astronauts and cosmonauts I met — Gibson near my college and the other two at a science-fiction convention(!) — so it follows that I started with autographed photos. One of the first photos I bought was an inscribed Shannon Lucid photo — I was so new I had to ask what inscribed meant!

I wound up collecting a bit of everything, but as time went on, a lack of space (no pun intended) and personal issues developed, I had to narrow down my collection severely.

My main focus is on the space shuttle, since I grew up with that program.

In addition to my signed photos, I have books and signed books, but I'm very selective as to what books I kept/keep. (To my credit, I don't recall what books I used to have as something I want to re-read, so I have no regrets there.)

Most of my collection has been in-person, either myself or through friends. Some of it has been thru the mail.

I guess as I get older I have the realization that I can't take it with me, so again, I have no regrets as to what I no longer have (I used to have a sweet Snoopy and NASA collection!) and I have no expectations with what will happen to my stuff after I pass (and obviously, will have no cares, either.) My kid will get my autographed photos, for either sale or keeping — all I want is that whatever my kid does, that said kid gets enjoyment out of the results.

Mike_The_First
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Posts: 427
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2014

posted 01-03-2018 10:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike_The_First   Click Here to Email Mike_The_First     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Hart Sastrowardoyo:
Have to remember, too, that the shuttle astronauts are getting up there in age.
Jeeze... Where the heck did the time go?!

It's hard to believe we're coming up on the 37th anniversary of STS-1. A kid born during the last shuttle flight will be turning 7 years old this July...

I actually think this is a good reminder for all of us. We think of the MGA guys as old, but don't really think of the shuttle astronauts in that same category (at least, I don't). Chris Hadfield, for example, turns 60 next year.

Mike Dixon
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Posts: 1229
From: Kew, Victoria, Australia
Registered: May 2003

posted 01-03-2018 11:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike Dixon   Click Here to Email Mike Dixon     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Precisely why I turned my attention to the shuttle program and gathering all autopenned and "clean" versions of the lithos. A task I would not like to repeat as quite a few are already quite rare.

kosmo
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Posts: 349
From:
Registered: Sep 2001

posted 01-04-2018 08:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for kosmo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I started collecting newspaper articles and magazines on the John Glenn's flight. Loved the 60's Life magazine cover stories on the astronauts.

I really didn't seriously start collecting space related stuff until about seventeen years ago, when I set out to meet all the living Mercury, Gemini and Apollo astronauts, introduce myself, shake their hand, and get a photo. The astronaut photos with myself and the experience of meeting them are the most prized part of my collection.

datkatz
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Posts: 165
From: New York, NY
Registered: Mar 2009

posted 01-04-2018 11:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for datkatz   Click Here to Email datkatz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As an old fart, I started collecting long before there was much to collect. When I was nine, in 1960, I became very interested in Project Mercury. I wrote to NASA many times, and was sent many booklets and photos.

Of course, I was one of the hundreds of thousands who wrote to Alan Shepard after his flight. I received a rubber-stamp signed form letter. (Many years later I met Shepard, and took along the letter. You can see the result below.)

Larry McGlynn
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From: Boston, MA
Registered: Jul 2003

posted 01-04-2018 01:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Larry McGlynn   Click Here to Email Larry McGlynn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It is interesting to see this question come on this message board over the years. So I found one of my posts from 2013 answering this very question.
For me, it was 1959, I was taken to the local Raytheon plant that would build the Apollo Guidance Computer a few miles down the road. My older brother was writing a report on rockets and missiles. While at the company, the manager who guided us through the plant gave each of us a small piece of Mylar which was the same as the material used on the Echo satellite. I was hooked from then on and collected newspapers, toys, magazines and NASA related public relations pieces.

Yes, college, sports and women took over until about 1995. Then I found out that one could buy flown artifacts at Superior and various dealers. I was off on the collecting binge again. Haven't stopped since.

The Chinese have landed on the Moon, Pad 39A has been privatized and I am working in antiquities.

It's been a fun ride.

And it is still a fun ride.

em8g16
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Posts: 13
From: Spain
Registered: Dec 2017

posted 01-04-2018 03:53 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for em8g16   Click Here to Email em8g16     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'm so jealous of you all! I would have loved to be alive at the time of the MGA and early shuttle astronauts. It truly was an amazing time.

datkatz What an incredible story! And Shepard was so nice.

Robert I didn't know that he was going to fly again, though I did know he wanted to. I hope he achieves it! As you might guess he is my personal hero. We just have one Spanish astronaut! Do you know how I could write to him? I haven't found any way other than his Twitter.

Again, thank you to everyone for your warm welcome and your comments, I'm really enjoying reading them!

Mike Dixon
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Posts: 1229
From: Kew, Victoria, Australia
Registered: May 2003

posted 01-04-2018 05:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike Dixon   Click Here to Email Mike Dixon     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
You should try contacting him through the ESA. They may well send you a hand signed item/portrait.

SpaceyInMN
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Posts: 300
From: Andover, MN
Registered: Dec 2013

posted 01-04-2018 08:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for SpaceyInMN   Click Here to Email SpaceyInMN     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Run while you still can! This hobby is very addictive! Haha, seriously, though, I started with mailing a photo to John Glenn that he was kind enough to sign and return. After that, I was hooked. My next quest was to obtain an autograph of all the moonwalkers, which morphed into one of every astronaut who had flown to the moon. I completed that last year. Along the way, I've added many other astronaut and NASA personnel autographs, a flown strap from Endeavour, some covers, numerous books, patches, and who knows what else.

Enjoy the ride, and please hang around cS and post your successes! And welcome!

Ken Havekotte
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Posts: 2552
From: Merritt Island, Florida, Brevard
Registered: Mar 2001

posted 01-04-2018 10:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ken Havekotte   Click Here to Email Ken Havekotte     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Wasn't this same topic posted years ago, or something very close to it? I do recall responding to a similar cS topic way back, but can't recall the time frame or if I am just mistaken about it, and didn't Larry say it was a topic here in 2013?

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 38628
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 01-04-2018 10:34 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The 2013 topic that Larry cited asked "How long have you been collecting space?" — a similar, but different question.

We've had other similar topics in the past. The passage of time has changed some of the advice offered.

woodg2
Member

Posts: 125
From: Lompoc CA
Registered: Feb 2010

posted 01-04-2018 11:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for woodg2   Click Here to Email woodg2     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I got hooked while in grad school, right after "Apollo 13" hit the theaters. One of my classmates had worked at Mission Control. We visited his apartment and he had a modest collection. I was hooked!

Then he showed a Superior catalog. I paid way too much for a Glenn/Cooper signed photo but it is still one of my favorite items. After that I picked up one the the Astronaut Scholarship Foundation prints signed by six of the Mercury 7 and started collecting through the mail. I even received an Armstrong signature through the mail in Summer 2000 — long after he officially stopped signing.

Since then I have collected signed books, medallions with flown metal, small flown items (including Florian's Artifact Cloud displays) and am now collecting a particular type of Apollo 11 first day cover (the one with the three astronaut heads on he left) signed by various astronauts and support personnel.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
Member

Posts: 3284
From: Toms River, NJ
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 01-05-2018 06:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Mike_The_First:
We think of the MGA guys as old, but don't really think of the shuttle astronauts in that same category (at least, I don't).
Which is why one should see the shuttle astronauts when they make appearances. Even though there's a lot of them, even if you take the subset of US shuttle astronauts, there's only a few that regularly make presentations, rarer still that a crew or most of a crew appear once their debrief is over.

I hate to use the term "once in a lifetime opportunity," but the last few presentations I have gone to are just that — the Hubble 25 commemoration at Udvar-Hazy just almost three years ago is one of them — is a perfect example. Where else could you get see most of the STS-109 and 125 crews, as well as Claude Nicollier from Switzerland and Bruce McCandless, among others? And most of them were signing!

Lagazza
Member

Posts: 20
From: Santa Monica, CA
Registered: Sep 2017

posted 01-06-2018 11:50 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Lagazza   Click Here to Email Lagazza     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was lucky enough to have a news correspondent father who covered the Program from the beginning. My mom worked for NACA/NASA in public affairs. Shorty Powers baby-sat me. I literally grew up surrounded by these wonderful people. So not only do I have memorabilia - but memories as well.

Mike_The_First
Member

Posts: 427
From: USA
Registered: Jun 2014

posted 01-06-2018 02:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike_The_First   Click Here to Email Mike_The_First     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Hart Sastrowardoyo:
Which is why one should see the shuttle astronauts when they make appearances.
I just did the math over in the John Young RIP thread — aside from STS-2, there are no full shuttle crews that are still alive until STS-51J.


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