Mail Call 6! Exciting Drifting and More Dragon Ball

Another package == another mail call post! Let’s see what’s inside, probably more Dragon Ball trading cards if I had to guess

Hello again! This post is kind of an odd one, see I already opened this package and I even reviewed one of the items inside it. I cheated a bit there because I knew what was in this one and I really wanted those Initial D trading cards to be my 20th review. But that wasn’t the only thing in this package! If I had to guess there will be some more Dragon Ball cards in here, cause when I have ever opened one of these and not found Dragon Ball cards?

On International Logistics

This delivery was actually part 2 of a single order. See shipping things from like China to the USA used to be really expensive and even more logistically challenging then it is now. Like 30 years ago being a “Courier” was still a job. This meant that you took packages on a commercial plane, it was cheaper and simpler for a company to pay you to do that then to deal with shipping. This is the big change that AliExpress bought to us, it allowed shipping costs to drop to basically 0.

The way that works though is by abusing some international postal agreements. Countries have to agree to deliver each others mail you know? It isn’t the case that a US postal worker drives up to Canada to deliver that letter you sent to your cousin. No, the mail changes hands at the border and a Canadian postal worker will do that delivery. But how do you charge or this? Who do you charge for this?

Countries kind of all decided to just let that be a wash. Canada will accept and deliver anything the US gives it (up to a certain size/weight) and deliver it essentially for free. The US will do the same thing. The idea is that each sides costs balance out and everyone wins.

This all falls apart though when one of the trading partners has billions more people then you do, along with massive export deficits. That’s the situation between the US and China. They’ve agreed to deliver mail, up to a certain size, basically for free. AliExpress helps vendors to get in under those limits, so these AliExpress packages are mostly free for the vendors to send to you – they pay for the shipping materials and labor.

Ok sorry, back to trading cards lol

What’s in the box!

Cutting the wrapping and popping open the bubble cocoon we see this has 3 boxes in it. That’s what I was talking about above there, I ordered 7 boxes from this vendor. They sent it in two shipments so it would go under that delivery agreement weight limit. This can cause weird effects like you get 1 thing quickly, and the other 2 things take a month longer. I’m waiting on a few things like that now, fortunately I order enough that the delays don’t matter – always have something new coming in 🙂

As you probably guessed that purple shiny cube is filled with Ultraman cards! I knew I wanted some, but I could not figure out what was what from the vendor marketting or advertising so I just kind of grabbed a random box. It’s a 5-yuan box, so the packs should be decent. I’ve heard really good things about this line of cards, even that it might be the best set Kayou makes – we’ll see about that when I get back to this one.

Of course that little white box was the Initial D one I just reviewed. Since I already talked about these cards in the review, I’ll talk a bit about why I decided to buy those. If you’ve read the review you know these are expensive, the most expensive cards I’ve bought at around $1.18 per card. Now that might sound insanely cheap to a western collector – but in Asia, this is priced like a luxury good at that point. Remember that like the Little Dinosaur Demon Slayer cards are only 8 cents a card. So these initial D cards are 15x more expensive.

I still bought them, that’s because I love Initial D. With this site I’m not trying to flaunt wealth like you see on a lot of the sports cards breaker streams. I’m actually trying to do the complete opposite, I’m trying to show that this hobby doesn’t have to be so expensive. You can have fun, break packs and pull some really stellar cards from 40 cent packs too. So in that sense, these Initial D cards are above the range I’d usually work in. So when I’m talking about money on this site, try to keep it in that frame of reference – I’m trying to be cheap intentionally here.

Ah there it is! More Dragon Ball cards… As you know if you’ve been keeping up I knew nothing about this show, still really don’t. I bought the cheapest box of cards I could just to so I could cross this property off my list. Those cards were so impressive that I bought a 5-yuan box. Those were then also so impressive that I bought another 5 yuan box :). I’m planning to pick up one of the really nice boxed sets for these – but I’m waiting for the next release to do that. This blue box is from LZ01, the first series. At 20$ for this box, and 100 cards in here — these only cost 18 cents each. You see what I mean now about relative expense?

Conclusions

I don’t usually conclude a mail call post but I wanted to mention a few things that I’m planning for the next few weeks. Of course, box reviews will keep coming, I have I think 40 un-opened boxes to get through yet. I’ve also got two boxes of supplies, like sleeves and toploaders that finally showed up – I was planning to do some pieces on those, a review and maybe a how to use them correctly sort of post.

Then I’ve got a bunch of sports cards coming. I know, I know, but look this is the Trading Card Archives – not the anime card archives. I love the anime cards because of how inexpensive they are. But I feel bad that I can’t really compare them with anything. I can’t tell you if this 8 cent demon slayer card is higher quality than this 8000$ rookie prizm card – I’ll never be able to tell you why the prizm card costs 8000$.

So yeah, I bought some sports cards. I tried to get stuff from each of the main vendors, Topps, Upper Deck and Panini. The idea is not to become a sports card site, there are plenty of those and they are so much better than I can ever be at that – they actually watch sports! I don’t. My plan for these is to use them to compare the quality, retail techniques, design, printing tech and anything else I can between these western manufacturers and the eastern ones we’re already pretty familiar with.

So yeah, look out for that in the future, catch you later!

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