Thursday, January 10, 2019

New Set: 1930 One-Color Disks - C301

Discovering new menko sets is always a thrill.  Discovering new C-Series/Round menko sets is awesome and on a whole new level.  It is what keeps me going in the sumo card hobby.  I came across this set recently and knew it was extremely unique when I got it in hand.  Why?  First, it was printed in 1930 during a time when only a few cards/postcards were being printed of rikishi so it captures some obscure wrestlers.  Second, C-series menko were not popular so only a few of these types of sets were printed and even fewer survive today.  And lastly, this is the only C-series set that actually uses real photos of wrestlers instead of drawings.  This set is constructed by printing the images on paper, gluing that paper to thin cardboard, and then die cutting the menko out.  On some of my menko the paper and cardboard are separating as the 90-year old glue is starting to lose its grip.
You can see the glue separation as well as the layout of the menko on this miscut example:




As an added bonus, this set's checklist is the largest of the type coming in at 14 cards.  Each menko measures approximately 1.75"/4.5cm in diameter.

Here are the four colors shown with the Gyoji card - Grey, Purple, Pink, Blue:



Here are the three Yokozuna in the set.  The rather lackluster Yokozuna Minanogawa (shown here as Komusubi Asashio), the equally lackluster Yokozuna Miyagiyama, and the great Tamanishiki (shown here as a Sekiwake)!


10 comments:

  1. Nice find! I guess that will be another addition to the updated edition of your guide?

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    1. Thanks Sean. These are pretty unique. You bet they will make the next edition!

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  2. Congratulations on the discovery! Love the rainbow!

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    1. Yeah, an early form of parallels I guess. Ha!

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  3. That is an amazing looking set, I love the colors.

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    1. Thanks! A pretty unique set for sure with the 4 different colors!

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  4. Very cool! I love seeing old sets like this. Did the original Allen & Ginter cards (1800s era) feature Sumo Wrestling at all?

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    1. There was one card from the era, Matsada Sorakichi, but he was out of sumo and in pro wrestling by time the card was made. This set definitely captures an era not often depicted on Japanese cards. Thanks for swinging by!

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  5. Wow! These are so cool! Reminds me of those round sets they made with baseball players and comic characters on them...Pogs maybe?

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    1. Japanese menko were precursors to POGs. POGs had been around a while, but made a huge leap in popularity starting in 1994. I missed the POG era by about 2-3 years. I was out of collecting and in college when the craze hit in 1994-1995 and when I got back into collecting in the early 2000s the POG craze had "long" been over having ended in 1997. You ever collect them?

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