Millions of items coming to hobbyDB from our newest partner, Heritage Auctions!

We are super excited about working together with Heritage Auctions, here the official press release text  –

Heritage Auctions and hobbyDB to Bring Vast
Collecting Archives to the Masses

DALLAS, Texas (November 14, 2019) – Heritage Auctions, the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer is helping collector site hobbyDB document and provide values for every collector.

Designed to become the ultimate crowd-sourced database for collecting, hobbyDB offers the ability to research, track, value, buy and sell collectible objects. Collectors from around the world already come to hobbyDB to research and acquire everything from Golden Age comics to Porsche posters to Tiffany Glass and beyond.

Now, to the delight of hobbyDB’s millions of visitors, the hobbyDB database will be boosted by over 5 million past lots previously sold at Heritage Auctions.

“As a collector myself, I believe that hobbyDB could be exactly what the collectibles world needs,” said Heritage Auctions Co-Chairman Jim Halperin. “We’re delighted to support their ambitious goal to eventually index and document 100 billion collectibles in the most accessible way.”

Since launching in 2014, hobbyDB has become home to over 605,000 collectors, growing its user base 94% in the last 12 months alone. hobbyDB’s combined collections now have a total value of $624 million, and its database will increase roughly tenfold with the gradual addition of Heritage’s archive.

“Heritage Auctions is No. 1 for many areas of collectibles, so we are very excited about this alliance,” commented hobbyDB CEO Christian Braun, “We know that by working together, we’ll be able to bring their data to the widest possible audience and get even closer to becoming the ultimate resource for collectors worldwide.”

About Heritage Auctions

Heritage Auctions is by far the largest fine art and collectibles auction house founded in the United States, as well as the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer. Heritage maintains offices in New York, Dallas, Beverly Hills, San Francisco, Chicago, Palm Beach, London, Paris, Geneva, Amsterdam and Hong Kong. The Internet’s most popular auction-house website, www.HA.com, has over 1,250,000 registered bidder-members and searchable free archives of over five million past auction records with prices realized, descriptions and enlargeable photos. Reproduction rights routinely granted to media for photo credit.

 

 

In our books, Heritage is our biggest possible auction house partner. Different from Christie’s and Sotheby’s, Heritage is focused on what we are focused on – collectibles. They are also courteous, diligent, professional and overall a perfect ally.  Here some of the cool items they have auctioned  –

From left to right – a Patek Philippe Yellow Gold Automatic Perpetual Calendar Minute Repeating Wristwatch With Moon Phases sold for $322,500, a Dracula Poster, Universal from 1931 sold for $525,800, a 1913 Liberty Nickel, PR64 NGC CAC sold for $3,290,000, a copy of Detective Comics #27, DC, 1939 sold for $1,075,500 and a Hermès 30cm Matte Gris Cendre Himalayan Nilo Crocodile Birkin Bag with Palladium Hardware sold for $112,500!

Soon you will be able to find these and many more items on hobbyDB!

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Meet Tony Karamitsos, Car Designer: 1/64, 1/1 and Scales In Between

As hobbyDB grows into new collectible territory, diecast remains one of our most important core categories. Over the years we’ve had a chance to talk to a lot of legends and heavy hitters in the industry to find out what makes them tick. Tony Karamitsos has been a designer for several important brands over the last couple of decades including Johnny Lightning and Round2.

Tony KaramitsosTony’s first job in the industry was with Playing Mantis in 1999. The company had recently started reissuing some of the original Johnny Lightning Topper models and was fairly new to creating fresh diecast designs for a new millennium.

Tony Karamitsos camaroTony KaramitsosHis career is a natural fit for someone who has had a lifelong passion for cars. “I’ve always had a huge passion with small scale and 1:1 scale cars since I was a kid,” he said. Though it’s not his job, he builds real 1/1 scale cars in his spare time. In fact, several of his own cars have been the basis for scale models over the years. His ’69 Camaro became a Johnny Lightning casting, although it has since been modified to more of a pro-street look. It’s one of the perks of helping to decide what cars get produced in scale. (We’ll cover some of his other Chevy cars in an upcoming article)

Tony has been designing die-cast cars non-stop since those days at Playing Mantis. When the JL brand was sold to Round 2, he went along in 2005. As diecast Brand Manager, “ I oversee the employees, layout specs for 1/64 & 1/18 die-cast programs,” he said. “I’m responsible for all tooling development and graphic design for numerous programs.”

Auto World BuickThat makes him responsible for AutoWorld models, known for their accurate models of mostly stock automotive offerings. They are also known for taking chances on cars that haven’t been oversaturated in diecast, such as mid-1970s Buick wagons and quirky but interesting early 1960s Chrysler designs.

Over the years he has had a hand in designing hundreds of highly detailed die-cast replicas for numerous scales for other well-known brands including, Racing Champions, American Muscle, Legends of the Quarter Mile, slot car replicas, as well as other resin models & model kits which are all currently owned by Round2.

For all his efforts, Tony was inducted into the Model Car Hall of Fame in 2017.

He has never forgotten his childhood roots in his hobby… er, career. “The oldest model I have is an original Topper Toys Johnny Lightning Mako Shark,” he said. “I also collect GI Joe, He-Man, and Thundercats.” His other non-automotive interests include being a DJ (you can follow him on Instagram @DJ_Grind1).

Tony Karamitsos

Tony always draws a crowd at diecast conventions.

In the meantime, He’s on the lookout for interesting cars that haven’t been overexposed in the diecast market. “We have a lot of new 1-64th tooling in the works,” he said. “We’ve announced a couple so far… a Dodge Stealth and a Chevy II Wagon. But I’d like to keep the others under wraps for now.”

 

Interested in joining forces with hobbyDB to take charge of our collectible destiny? Learn more at our Wefunder profile.

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Every Collector Benefits as hobbyDB Database Expands into New Territory

Ron Ruelle

Ron Ruelle hobbyDB

A couple weeks ago, we told you about hobbyDB’s endeavor to add every collectible shot glass from Hard Rock Cafe to the hobbyDB database. In their typical fashion, Hard Rock has created thousands of different designs, including each location, year, and event when possible. Combined with their pins and other collectibles, the hobbyDB database has surpassed 80,000 different Hard Rock collectibles.

hobbydb expansionMany long-time users discovered hobbyDB when diecast vehicles were far and away our biggest subject, and Hot Wheels dominated those listings. In fact, a quick check of our database shows close to 50,000 items when “Hot Wheels” is punched into the search bar which is a lot!

But we’ve come a long way in the last five years. Now with more than 500,000 items and subjects in the database, we’re working to add all sorts of different collectibles. Here’s a quick look at how we got here.

hobbydb sloganFirst, a reminder of hobbyDB’s mission… our slogan, found at the bottom of the main page is “Over 100 Billion Collectibles… Eventually.” And that includes every kind of documentable collectible under the sun. The very first items in the database years ago were from a collection of James Bond Corgi cars. Sprinkled in with those were some View Master reels, corkscrews, and chess sets.

We then moved to diecast cars, particularly Hot Wheels, and quickly became an authoritative source for information on those. Why? Because hobbyDB grew from a diecast website, and our founders have always had a keen interest in diecast, and that brand had the best and most complete data available at the time.  We integrated data from Diecastlovers, Gary’s Cars, Model Pack Rat and South Texas Diecast.

hobbyDB has and will always be a user-driven site. We count on collectors to see where there are holes and add their own items to fill in the blanks. And we have a data team that does the same thing, keeping track of the current offerings as they come out.

dysentery pac man x box commodore 16After working to build out our giant Hot Wheels database, it was time to add video games! So, we partnered with the owner of Hugada (the HUgh GAme DAtabase), to import the result of his long years of adding video games that included fan favorites such as Assassin’s Creed, Final Fantasy and The Legend of Zelda.

Another way we expand is by partnering with companies who see the value in having their entire inventory documented not just on their own site, but alongside other seemingly unrelated topics. Kidrobot, conveniently located in Colorado, also home of hobbyDB Headquarters, was one of our first big partners. Their online archives were incomplete and randomly documented enough that some of their history was in danger of being lost over time. So they partnered with us to form one of our first Official Archives. These archives (and there are a lot of them now) are the result of a collectible company providing the data to us so we can provide that data an organized home.

We’ve also partnered with Funko to add not only their complete archive, but up to date pricing information on their vinyl art toys, old and new to their App.

The benefits of Official Archives are many… the data is accurate and complete because it comes directly from the horse’s mouth. And it’s going to stay up-to-date, as the companies can easily provide listings of new and upcoming products as they are announced. And one of the best parts is any entry can be cross-referenced with other collectibles in the database.

July 4 hard rock cafe

The Hard Rock Cafe items came about another way, though. In this case, we found a community of dedicated collectors of their pins (Pin Masters) who were looking for a new home. So they decided to locate it all on hobbyDB in a standard format with easy search functions and cross-referencing. The result is over 80,000 pins and other collectibles.

Over the past year, we’ve worked hard to add more pop culture brands as well. These include Dark Horse Deluxe, Diamond Select Toys, Garbage Pail Kids (in cooperation with Geepeekay.com), Hot Toys, Eaglemoss, Kotobukiya, Mego, NECA and more!

We are now adding model boats, Lego minifigs, film posters and much, much more! If you have some collectibles that you’d like to add to the database, join us! Find out more about how to become a Contributor here.

 

Interested in joining forces with hobbyDB to take charge of our collectible destiny? Learn more at our Wefunder profile.

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8 Real-Life Customs That Became Hot Wheels Vehicles

Ron Ruelle

Ron Ruelle hobbyDB

If you had a chance to see the Hot Wheels Legends Tour this summer, it was an amazing gathering of customs, hot rods, stock cars, whatever’s cool in car culture. Each stop on the tour featured lots of local cars, but there were also several amazing customs that made it to every location.

In addition to being a good-time festival, it was also a competition among some very serious customizers. The grand prize included the winning car being miniaturized by Mattel and turned into an actual 1/64 scale Hot Wheels diecast car.

hot wheels legends the nashFor 2019, the winner is The Nash, a slightly modified Nash Metropolitan by Greg Salzillo and Dave Ford. By slightly modified, we mean the original 40 hp engine was replaced with a Small Block Chevy 305, cranking out 300 horses. It also has unique headers coming out of the fenders, dice shaped coves on the velocity stacks, old school stock steel wheels, and original bias-ply tires that stick way outside the fenders.

This isn’t the first time Hot Wheels has commemorated brilliant real-life customs like this, of course. Here are some others.

hot wheels beatnikEd Roth’s Beatnik Bandit – Most collectors know that some of the early fantasy designs for Hot Wheels were based on actual custom show cars. One of the very first and most famous was the Beatnik Bandit by Ed “Big Daddy” Roth. Some of his other designs would be miniaturized later, but the Bandit is the pioneer.

hot wheels paddy wagonTom Daniel’s Paddy Wagon – Another legendary customizer/hot rodder of the 1950s and ’60s, Daniel created many wicked hot rods that were turned into model kits. And some of them would also make it to 1/64, such as the Paddy Wagon, one of the “just outside the Original 16” offerings.

hot wheels fleetsideHarry Bradley’s Custom Fleetside – Many of the customs have been turned into Hot Wheels cars over the years, belonged to Mattel employees. One of the Original 16 cars, the Custom Fleetside was based on a custom El Camino owned by designer Harry Bradley. In fact, this car inspired the mild custom look that was shared by many of the Original 16 and beyond.hot wheels larry woodLarry Wood’s Ford COE Truck – Wood joined Hot Wheels one year after their debut, but he may as well have been. Among the hundreds of designs he has contributed, his actual custom ’38 Ford Cab Over Engine Truck has been replicated in 1/64 for the Hot Wheels premium line.

hot wheels vetuskeyBrandon Vetuskey’s Custom Firebird – More recently, Brandon Vetuskey has been one of the lead designers at Hot Wheels, turning out all sorts of new classics. His real custom ’67 Pontiac Firebird became 1/64 legend a couple years ago.

hot wheels zarnockMike Zarnock’s Altered Roadster – Zarnock is not a Hot Wheels employee, but he may as well be. He is one of the prominent historians of the brand and also a part-time drag racer. Mattel decided his pedigree and design skills should be honored with a 1/64 model of his red dragster.hot wheels 2jetz Luis Rodriguez’s 2JetZ – This is the second year of the Legends Tour competition. For 2018, a completely different kind of car was the winner. Luis Rodriguez’s 2JetZ custom car, a completely scratch-built jet fighter/salt flat racer-inspired ride, was the winner. That car should be on the pegs any day now as well.

The exact release date of The Nash has yet to be determined. “We’re extremely overwhelmed, proud and excited over what Dave and I created with The Nash,” says Salzillo. “I can’t wait to see my kids’ faces when they see their dad’s car turned into a real Hot Wheels toy.” Best of all, these cars will be part of the mainline collection, so they will be affordable and available to most collectors.

Expect to see The Nash in stores sometime as part of the 2020 series.

 

Join us and learn more about the hobbyDB mission and vision at our Wefunder Profile.

Comments (1 Comment)
Kirk Smith

The 'Nashole' will most likely not make it to the line-up until 2021, because 2020 is all ready slated. It takes about a year for each casting to be added to the line-up. As you can see the '2JetZ' took a year as it is just now being released in the 2020 line-up.

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Take charge of your collecting experience like never before!

It’s been three weeks since we announced the launch of our crowdfunding campaign. Now with the support of more than 100 backers, we’re uniting to build an army of collectors; one that will be strong enough to influence how the $450 billion collectible and licensing market moves forward. To help ensure we can get there, our goal for the next two weeks is to grow to 500 backers worldwide.

Throughout the campaign so far, we’ve received two important pieces of feedback. The first is that people don’t quite understand what crowdfunding is. The second is if it would be possible to lower the minimum investment. Well I’m here to assure you that we are ready to help with both requests.

First off, what the heck is crowdfunding?

It used to be that investing in awesome projects and great teams (and potentially lots of $$$) was just for the top 1%. But now, thanks to the JOBS Act, EVERYONE gets the opportunity to own a piece of something great that they love! Equity crowdfunding allows anyone to invest in early-stage, pre-IPO companies that they believe will do great things! What this means is that when you invest in hobbyDB, you will actually own a piece of the company. And, if all goes well, have the potential to reap the rewards of the business.

hobbyDB family of brands

The power of 500 backers

hobbyDB is the very first company in its space designed to be owned by collectors and fans!

In the past, we raised funding the more traditional route. But, when we discovered the opportunity of crowdfunding, we decided that we had to give our communities a chance to own what we are all working to build. We believe hobbyDB and its sister brands, PopPriceGuide and The Toy Peddler, get their strength from the powerful communities that are behind them. By uniting collectors and fans of all kinds, we’ll be able to become the ultimate collectible influencers and create a resource that we all love to use. We’re not quite there yet, but with the power of the community behind us, we’ll be able to build and innovate so much faster and develop the tools that the community really wants.

An important piece of helping our community become backers of hobbyDB is making sure that the minimum investment amount isn’t too high. So when some of you told us the $220 minimum wasn’t within your budgets, we heard you loud and clear. So, we lowered the $220 price point minimum to just $110.

By becoming a hobbyDB backer, you’re helping us build the ULTIMATE resource for collectors and fans worldwide. A place where you can explore, track, and most importantly, safely buy and sell collectibles. With your involvement, we’re powering a movement that unites fans across the “collector-verse”, and pays tribute to our shared passions.

 

Now is your chance to join collectors worldwide in disrupting the $450 billion collectible and fan merch industry. Find out more about the benefits of becoming a hobbyDB backer and our vision at our Wefunder profile.

Need more convincing?

Don’t take our word for it! Get to know some of our newest backers and shareholders and see what some of them have to say…

 

Also if you haven’t watched the video – check out some of our awesome hobbyDB collectors here –

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