Twenty Fifty
Jan 24, 2012 6:44 PM
Just realized I hit my 7 year anniversary on the OR. What a world of difference the years have made. While I had been a Oakley fan/collector for well over a decade before joining, being part of an organized collector’s forum has changed everything, including my collecting habits. I suppose the following list is part of my collecting “creed”, though it’ll always in the refinement stage, so it’s never completely set.....

1) Cool trumps rare. While all collectors want their pieces to be both, I wouldn’t hesitate to choose a mass produced cool looking pair over a super rare bland looking one if I was forced to make a choice. I didn’t always see it like that, however.

2) Quality over quantity. As a rookie, I wanted as many items as I could get my hands on. As a veteran collector, I realize that high volume actually detracts from the collection; what I deem non-special items dilutes the importance of the special ones in the display cabinet.

3) Buy retail from OPDs. While it hurts to pay full retail at first, it pays off in long run with deep discounts and access to display and rep items.

4) Collecting display items is fun. I guess have to thank Cal and Brennan2x for this one, since they’re the pioneers of collecting display pieces. Nothing like getting some unique display pieces to give your collection some extra character.

5) Sweat the small stuff. I didn’t pay much attention to the accessories (like keychains and stickers) when I first started. Good thing that changed, as it adds some variety to the collection. Speaking of which...

6) Diversity is vital. I think all collectors go through a “down phase” on certain product lines, so having interest in other lines keeps things fresh. If I’m not feeling the new sunglass releases, I can still be happy with the apparel or the footwear lineup.

7) Be patient. In a small, young and niche hobby as Oakley collecting, everything seems to show up on the auction block or via other collectors. I find being patient eventually leads to grabbing that holy grail. Speaking of holy grails, the hobby’s full of them. Even if I don’t get the exact one I’m looking for, another cool item that I wasn’t expecting (or even knew existed) will show up eventually.

8) Official releases over customs. At first, customs were all the rage, especially factory produced customs. Now that pro customizers could mimic what they do at the factory very closely (at least on frames), customizing has lost some of its shine for me. I have a new appreciation of the factory colourways and the thought that went into some of them. That said, there are a number of exceptions to the “rule”. There are some amazing stuff that transcend custom work and are true works of art. The fighter jet-inspired X-metal, cratered Montefrio and battle damaged airbrushed RJ are all pieces that I find amazing works of art.

9) Don’t feed the scalpers. Sometimes it’s difficult to hold off paying a king’s ransom for that very last piece to complete a line or to obtain that holy grail. However, the more I pay now means the more I’ll pay later. I won’t feed the scalpers anymore and hopefully this mindset will keep the hobby affordable for everyone for a little while longer.

10) Meet your fellow collectors. I’ve met some amazing people on this board. Wouldn’t trade that experience for any pair or Oakley product the world can offer.

That’s my list. Please feel free to share how your collecting habits have changed through the years.
Justin "Scorpion Zero" Jones
Jan 24, 2012 7:18 PM
Oak, you always have great threads and great contributions. Before I read your response I mentally formulated my own and it mirrors yours very closely. Some points I didn't consider and others I didn't even realize I was doing until you quantified it in words. I'd say these are some VERY important points and sometime a newbie to Oakley collecting could learn from as well as the other veteran collectors. Great work sir.
Dann Thombs
Jan 24, 2012 8:01 PM
I think anything I'd have to say has been represented above. The key points for me are:

1) Patience. Waiting for that final piece makes it all the more worthwhile. This corresponds with don't feed the scalper.

2) Community. A great majority of my collection has been collector to collector. I, as well as others, rather pieces go to another at cost or close to. No chance I could have the zero's without a lot of help.

3) Enjoyment. It's all too easy to burn out. We've seen it a lot. Sometimes a small liquidation helps enjoy what you have that much more.
Jan 24, 2012 8:14 PM
I agree with all of the above. What you all list is pretty much how I feel. I've been into Oakley for about 20 years. I haven't quite the collection as a lot of folks but I truly value each piece and most pieces I truly have put thought into. I've always been into Oakley's other products as well though. I remember back in the day when the AFA was basically three tees, a hat and two stickers. The days when I heard about jackets, pants, footwear, watches, etc - I almost flipped - it was an awesome time. I jumped on what I could too. It was so cool to wear an Oakley Ballistic Jacket, Shoe One or Bullet watch when they first were released. WOW! Oakley for more than just my face!

I tried my hardest to get display stuff before it was on ebay - never had any luck but that made getting that first piece even sweeter. I'd have to say collecting display stuff is one of my favorite Oakley things to do. Even more so than the eyewear or AFA itself.

Oak you summed it up very well. Thanks for starting this thread.
Nik Gutscher
Jan 24, 2012 8:17 PM
Couldn't agree more Oak. I'd title this "Collectors Creed" and put it up top... Well said my friend.
paul jewiss
Jan 24, 2012 8:55 PM
i agree with all the above

i would also add, dont be afraid to release some of your collection to add something new, to rejuvanate your collection.....times change, models change, your preferences change and so your collection changes.....it keeps things fresh and keeps you motivated to continue collecting.
Jan 24, 2012 9:45 PM
Very well-put Oak, as always!

Stories. For me it's all the stories:

-how a product came about
-how fellow members met
-how a member acquired a pair, when it's a crazy story
-how members got into the O-insanity
-how this or that technology works etc.

Learning about special releases that aren't widely announced around the globe - if it's local...

And quality, over quantity as usual.
Kenny "HED" Wu
Jan 25, 2012 2:33 AM
What a great piece mr oak... if you were there on a pulpit, i would have voted you for president or something! thanks
paul mcj
Jan 25, 2012 3:10 AM
Great thread, great post, Oak. I can wholeheartily agree with most everything, and can see myself in a lot of your message.

There really does seem to be some sort of life cycle to oakley collecting that many of us have witnessed over the years. I think we see that is more evident in the other oakley forum as well. Not that it is a bad thing, but it is almost undeniable to trend through a fanatical stage of collecting ... and it is just a 'choose your adventure' type path as to whether your burn out and sell out, or mature into a far more boring collector (zing!).

Most of us have made mistakes along the way, but I certainly hope we also feel that we are smarter about how we go about this oakley thing now.
Nickolas Smith
Jan 26, 2012 12:10 AM
Nothing constructive to add other than well said by all.

It was meeting many of you at the Co-Pilots thing that really turned me into a real enthusiast for the long haul.

People before thing.

Andrew Gregory
Jan 26, 2012 5:17 AM
Congrats on the 7 years Oak and thanks for the your thoughts/insights on collecting...cheers.
Jan 26, 2012 5:12 PM
Congrats as well Oak! I got so involved in what you wrote I forgot to mentioned that.
Eric Arsenault
Jan 28, 2012 9:11 PM
Another great thread by my friend Oak, this is the one for me:
10) Meet your fellow collectors. I’ve met some amazing people on this board. Wouldn’t trade that experience for any pair or Oakley product the world can offer.
It helps put things in perspective, and prevent some of that burnout that Dann talked about. If you get the chance to meet with someone from the OR, do it, it will be awesome believe me !

the 1 rule I go by is this one:

Buy what you like, something you would wear and not just because its rare. And try to have no regrets, thats the hardest part.


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