How to preserve your action figures
Many people who collect action figures and other toys/collectibles want to keep them in the best condition possible. This is not just for themselves or for resale, but so that the figures can be passed on from generation to generation, to be enjoyed as much by descendents as they were by the original collector. Or, if the collection is valuable enough, and has been kept in immaculate condition, it may be sold to help pay for a child’s college tuition or another major expense.
Collecting action figures is a fun hobby, but if you are really serious about it, you will do whatever it takes to keep your figures in mint or at least near-mint condition. The following are some tips for making sure that your action figures will look as good ten, twenty and more years from now as they did the day they were purchased, and retain their value:
• Keep carded/boxed figures in the original packaging. If you want to have loose figures, buy at least two of each figure, to ensure that you have one that is carded.
• Keep your action figures in a smoke-free area. If you are a smoker, or there is someone else in the home who smokes, have a separate room for your figures. If this is not possible, try to at least have them encased in a glass cabinet, so they are visible, yet protected somewhat from the smoke.
• Do not store action figures, especially carded ones, near sunlight. This means keeping them away from windows. Direct sunlight will fade the figures and the packaging over time, causing them to not look as good, and to lose their value.
• Do not store your action figures in a damp area. If they are boxed or carded, the cardboard will become warped and damaged, and eventually, the packaging may even come apart. If you live in a home where the temperatures fluctuate greatly, you may want to consider investing in airtight storage containers.
• Do not hang carded figures with tape or thumbtacks. You do not want to do anything that is going to cause damage to the packaging. Instead, build a shelf to set the figures on, or buy some display cases and stands. If you feel you must hang the figures on the wall, only do so if there are already spaces in the packaging to do so, such as the holes that are already there for store displays.
• Do not clean loose figures with harsh cleaners. If you really need to clean them, try to do so only with a damp sponge, and make sure that you completely dry the figures before putting them back on display.
These are just a few of the tips to ensure that your collection remains in the best of condition for many years.
For more in-depth instruction on how to properly care for action figures, there are many great books available on the subject. You can also find plenty of great information online, not to mention all kinds of new action figures you may be interested in buying.