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Leaf cards-originals and reprints

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1967-Leaf(now Donruss) 72 cards in the set
The originals were put out for a brief period of time in 1967. Rumors abound that they were pulled due to a licensing problem and I have never seen an 'official answer.' They would seem to have had a limited release and a regional one also, mainly in the midwest. The cards are black and white and captions, pictures and backs are not just sometimes incorrect, but downright funny. I would love to hear how they came about with some of the things they wrote. 
Boxes unopened are extremely rare.
Even empty boxes and wrappers command a high price
  The Star Trek Vault 40 years from the Archives bookk had a little sticker on the front stating it had pull out memorabillia inside. I found 3 reproduction Leaf cards (fronts and back).

I've heard a lot of different ways on how to tell the difference between the reprints. The best way (correct me if I am wrong) is the originals have a sandwich look...if you look at them from the side, they are layered white, gray, white. They are also, according to an article in CCPC, slightly smaller....measuring 2 3/8 by 3 7/16 inches. Now, we got into reprints...a touchy issue at best! There are two basic kinds.... 

  • The European set...this set is not 'marked' as a reprint. 
  • A set with a copyright of 1981 that identifies itself as a reprint.

UPDATE!!! Better late then never I always say. I was recently approached by RIchard Arnold, who while working cloesely with Gene Roddenberry years and the merchandising division for many, had a front seat for the Euro set *find*.
Dan Kremmar and his wife approached him in the mid-90's with the cards he reported to have found in a warehouse.   According to him, these are also from 1967, but were never released in the European market as planned.

According to Richard, "He sent me a sample set to examine, which he told me I could keep, saying they were worth something like $1500 to $2000. I immediately shot off a letter to him, on my Star Trek stationery, telling him that the cards were NOT an heretofore unknown version of the original set, but were in fact a modern reprint, and not one that had been authorized by the studio (I worked closely with Paramount's Merchandising and Licensing Division at the time). There was no doubt in my mind that someone was trying to pass these off as originals, when they so obviously weren't (I had a couple of original sets myself).

A few weeks later I got a call from someone in the M & L offices, asking me where I got off writing a letter of authenticity for Dan and his wife. I asked what they were talking about, and went over to their offices to see. Sure enough, Dan had taken my letterhead, my signature and some of the wording of my original letter to him and had fabricated a letter of authenticity from me, stating that his cards were, indeed, a rare, heretofore unknown European edition of the 1967 Leaf cards! It was Dan and his wife who were printing up the cards (it turned out that her family in Holland owned a printing company), and that they were hoping to enrich themselves passing these sets off as real and selling them for a bundle.

Paramount's attorneys then sent him a Cease and Desist and demanded that he immediately stop printing up any more sets, and to get rid of the sets that they'd already printed, but that it had to be made clear that these were reprints and not original 1960s sets. Dan continued to dance around the edge of legality and eventually he and his wife moved back to Holland to get away from Paramount's lawyers." 

(Side note: an ad from Kremmer states the Europen sets are  the only 'legal' set as it is controlled by Paramount, which is an interesting way of avoiding the real issues noted by Richard above. Paramount basically gave their permission to let him sell the sets to 'liquidate his stock and go out of business with this particular item. The spokesman further stated 'the material is not official Star Trek stock, but was done in an effort to make him go away.'" Richard Arnold reports that the only official set is the original 1967 set and that it was distributed in the US and Canada.

This is the text that came with the Euro set (Thanks, Jim): 

On side one....  

Certificate of Authenticity 1967 Leaf (European) Star Trek Set  

This Star Trek Leaf card set was discovered in Europe in 1989 at a former card producer's warehouse that has been in business since well before the 60's. From the information provided to us, we understand that these were manufactured in cooperation with Leaf for European distribution only. Shortly thereafter, Desilu withdrew the contract with Leaf, due to contractual difficulty. Upon notification of the aforementioned problem, the European card manufacturer decided not to issue them and stored them in the warehouse where they have been until their re-discovery in 1989 by Dan Kremer, a European collectibles importer.  
On side two.... 

Upon examination, The European set exhibits the following differences to their American counterpart. The European sets were never gloss coated (very few European cards were ever gloss coated). The cutting was poorer than the American edition (the cutting machines in Europe were early outdated cutters from the U.S.) The camera work is slightly poorer (again, inferior cameras).  

We hope you enjoy the very special previously unavailable set.  

Dan Kremer Imports  


Set #0586  
The 1981 set is marked reprint, so at least for this set, there is no risk of buying what you think is an original Leaf card, only to discover it is a reprint , but there does not seem to be a clear history here either. Who approved for it to be made and distributed? Still, though there is some question about it's origin, reprints have their place...many collectors are unable to afford a set of Leaf cards, but they would like to see what it looks like and this gives them an opportunity to do so.   I am not scornful of those who own the Euro set, I just would hate to find out the cards had been made just a few years and and were no more legal or valuable then he says the other reprints are worth. If they turn out to be from 1967, then what a great investment those people made! 

Unlike the 1981 reprint set, this set isn't labeled as a reprint and the consumer will need to be cautious in picking up cards to verify they are what they are expecting.

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Differences between the three sets: (anybody have any to add??) 

  • Original has a layered look: white/gray/white when viewed from the side.
  • The US reprint set has the back printed in B&W and now a second set which has a light pink tone to the back.
  • The European set and the US set have a red border around the text and the picture on the back has a red, almost maroon tint to it. 
  • The US reprint has a 1981 copyright and says reprint.
  • The Leaf and the Reprint are the same size. The European cards are slightly smaller.
  • The image on the European cards are cropped, slightly less of the image (around the edges) is present.
  • The images and text are much clearer on the US Leaf set than the others. 
  • The Leaf set has more of a gloss finish compared to the European set that has a satin type finish and the Reprint set that is like the European set. 
  1976 Topps
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88 cards and 22 stickers.
It has been noted that the ratios of cards to stickers is such that there is not an equal number of card sets to sticker sets, with the sticker set being the lesser of the two. This set occasionally gets called the Captains log set, due to the fact that that is the title of the back side of the card.  Some of the cards even carry a form of free advertising: "Be sure to watch for the new full-length motion picture." Since these were packed with bubble gum and in wax packs, there  are many cards with stains. I also had one collector tell me:. "I've also seen many stickers with front damage that looks like someone ran a perforating machine lightly across the face, diagonally. Sorta looks like a packaging machine process would have done that, rather than the actual manufacturing process, itself. " (Thanks, Vince) 

One reader noticed that cards had either one * or two ** on the back of the card like this: * c 1976 TOPPS CHEWING GUM. INC PRTD. IN USA. He discovered this possible explanation:

One * represented sheet "A" and two ** represented sheet "B". Both were printed at the same time and later separated. It is possible to put together a complete set of either although one is no more valuable or difficult to obtain than the other given enough singles to search through. (Thanks, Gary!)

sell sheet?!

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Star Trek Topps Cards A set of 4 cards offered with the purchase of the Topps 76 card book.
This is a cool item up for auctionne (as of 4/22/9), an empty case for the Topps 76 set. (Thanks, Andy for permission and Larry for noticing it!)
  1979 Topps 
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88 cards, 22 stickers. Based on the first movie, the fronts show images and posed photos from the movie. The backs for a puzzle of an image of the crew. One odd mention....card 54...Transporter Malfunction is actually a scene of Ilia and Decker playing an electronic game. This set consists of a lot of posed cards rather than action shots. The backs have plot summaries...incomplete actually, so as not to spoil the movie?   This set was also packed with gum and runs into the same problem with stains as the 76 set. 
There are 3 different wrapper designs in the set, the variations are in the ads on the side of the wrapper. Boxes and wrappers are not as hard to acquire as the first two series.
These were also released in 4 bread companies, Colonial, Kilpatrick, Manor and Rainbo bread  as both singles and uncut sheets. Manor seems to be the rarest of the 4 sets.
  Sell Sheet
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  The Star Trek Vault 40 years from the Archives book had a little sticker on the front stating it had pull out memorabillia inside. I found one sheet of Topps 79 reporduction stickers.
FTCC Star Trek II-1982
Large size 5x7,  30 cards in set.  

2 cards/pk,  36 pks/bx  

ST II FTC, 5x7. Print rumored to have a print run limited to 7500 sets. (See interview with the owner of FTC to see the real truth-end of page) No captions on back, just the movie title. Some consider them more like postcards than cards. Would have been nice if they had included a scene of Kirk and Spock saying their goodbye's though. 
There are 4 different wrappers.
  FTCC Star Trek III-1984 
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60 cards/20 ship cards 

5 cards/pk, 36 pks/bx  

Short text on back about the depicted scenes. Card #47 shows a shot of 'our lady' as she falls from orbit, a nice dramatic scene. There is a 20 card ship subset, showing the ships from this movie from several different angles. These are not inserts, exactly, and should be included as part of the set.
There are two oversized promo cards for this set.
  FTCC ST IV-1986 
5 cards/pk & 1 spaceship, 48 pks/bx 

60 cards. Slightly fancier back, with longer text. .Captions on the back reflect the front's scenes.
Q and A with Mark Macaluso, creator of the FTC card sets listed above: 

Questions: 1. What gave you the idea to do the ST cards?  

Topps didn't do it, so I asked for & got the license. 

2. Not possible now that Skybox has it all tied up, but what is involved in getting the rights to do the cards. 

It's pretty much the same for any card set. You call up the licensing department of the company that owns the product you're interested in and if they have any interest in having a set made, you negotiate an agreement. Royalty payments and such. 

3. Is the statement floating around that only 7500 sets of the ST II can be made correct? 

We made 18,000 sheets of trek II = about 250 12 box cases were made, the rest who collated directly into sets.

4. Did you decide to stop producing sets or did something happen to cause you to stop? (ie. Skybox took over, that sort of thing)  

When Trek's 25th Anniversary came around, Paramount really wanted someone big to take over - Skybox filled their demand. 

5. How did you go about choosing images for the cards. film clips? 

As part of my license, Paramount provided an assortment of slides using guidelines that I gave them, then I picked the best images and used them. 

6. Anything we don't know about the sets that you think we should??!!  

Not really. All 3 series had really small print runs (under 350 cases). No more can be produced. What exists around now is all there's ever going to be

Information for this page was gotten from Vince and NSU Issues May/June 1994 and Feb/March 1995 and CCPG, August 1994 ( Thanks Sam!!) . To order NSU.  

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