Guide to Basketball Card Holders and Cases

Collectors want their cards to be in the best condition when they acquire them and to keep them that way, it’s wise to invest in an assortment of basketball card holders and supplies.  Some cards can be kept in a cardboard sports card box but a different approach is needed for the cards that are a little more valuable or those you want to display.

The easiest way to store basketball cards is with clear plastic pages.  Around the size of an A4 piece of paper, the 9-pocket page keeps the cards secure and protected from dust and sports card sheetssunlight and fingers.  The sheets are then put into D-ring binders and can be stored like books on a shelf.  You can also fit 18 cards by placing them back to back inside the sheets but it does mean the backs of the cards cannot be viewed.

While 9-pocket pages are needed for the majority of basketball cards there are some oversized cards that require something different.  A couple of older Topps sets as well as the Fleer Jam Sessions releases of the 1990s, the obscure 2001-02 Topps High Topps and some others feature oversized cards.  Collectors will need 6-card pages when putting their 1969-70 and 1970-71 Topps, 1993-94 to 1995-96 Jam Sessions and 2001-02 Topps High Topps cards into sports card binders.

The giant 1976-77 Topps set is even bigger than the other oversized cards and a four-card page is needed for them.  Three pocket horizontal type pages can also be considered for some oversize cards A 1-pocket page also exists, it can be used for the "box-topper" and other very large items as these sheets are typically used for 8x10 size items.

binder for basketball cardsSports card albums are readily available on eBay and Amazon and sometimes those from office supply stores will also work well.  Those who collect different teams or players can sometimes color coordinate, using folders with the color of the team.

When storing, posting and displaying individual basketball cards there are many plastic basketball card holders and cases to consider.  The value of the card and also how important it is to the collector, can determine what type of holder is used to protect it.  The first line of protection for basketball cards, and the cheapest, are the penny sleeves.  These can keep the card from being scratched when it is put into a box or plastic holder.  It will also keep the card protected when being handled if someone’s hands are not perfectly clean.

semi-rigid holdersThere are a huge amount of individual sports card holders.  The semi-rigid holders, that come in a variety of sizes, provide some protection for the card when it is stored or when sent out in the mail.  The stronger rigid ones are better, and many collectors will place their card in a penny sleeve and then put it into a top loader card holder, and then tape the top of the card holder or wrap it in a team bag.

For display purposes, and to provide greater protection for the card, collectors use magnetic one touch holder and screwdown holders.  Many collectors prefer the magnetic holders as a screwdriver near an expensive card can be worrisome.  The card is covered by two pieces of plastic, which join together with a magnet or a screw.  The plastic that these holders is made from is also treated to safeguard the basketball card against UV rays.

Basketball cards keep getting thicker, with memorabilia pieces inserted in them, and collectors will find a variety of card holders for different types of cards.  There are many types of sets with thick base cards, from Exquisite Collection to Topps Echelon, and they will need a card holder with a higher pt (Points) number than other base cards.  A 35pt one-touch can be used for the regular common cards, like Hoops, while the sizes increase to 360pt for very thick cards.

Something that collectors will want to have available are trading card stands.  These are usually small, clear plastic stands that hold one card holder but other types are available.  It can hold a magnetic one-touch in a vertical or horizontal alignment.  Using the stand a card can be displayed on a desk or shelf.

trading card display case graded cardsMany collectors want to have their best cards out in the open for others to view and because of that they will invest in display cases.  These can be glass cabinets with shelves that sit on the floor or wooden cases with glass on the front, and sometimes the sides too, that attach to a wall.  Specially made to display cards, the wall-mounted cases come with a number of shelves where cards in one-touch or graded card holders can stand up and be viewed, like this lockable 36 graded card display case with door.

Collectors can also find different types of basketball card display cases for sale on eBay.   Another type of display case is the flat one that dealers use at card shows.  They are an option for a collector who has a large table or desk that can be used to hold the display case.

The top end of the card storage world is the fireproof safe.  A LeBron James Exquisite Collection rookie card or a Michael Jordan jersey card from 1997-98 Upper Deck can't be left in a folder.

Cards have come a long way from when a shoebox in the attic was the place to store them. Fortunately, there are plenty of basketball card holders and cases to keep your collection in good shape.

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