1963 Topps Football
Color Variations
Notes & Observations
Note: As of 3/9, for simplicity sakes, the original purpleish sky varieties will now be refered to as "Type A" and the greenish tint varietis will be refered to as "TYPE B".
What, never seen or heard of these before? You're not alone! Most people are skeptical about these and choose to believe they are simply inking anomolies and not intentional varieties. Well, after exchanging emails with several people, including individuals who are knowledeable in lithographic printing, I now firmly believe they are intentional, never-before-catalogued, varieties.
On this website I will not go into technical matters of how these were done. I am simply going to be showing scans of the cards I am aware of that exist in 2 variations. I will also add a little descriptive text to help describe what I see.
The basic difference in the variations is the total, and intentional, absence of the red color in certain areas of the cards. These cards can be examined under magnification, where each color dot can be seen clearly, and distinguished from each other. (See detailed explanation below)
The cards are going to be listed in numerical order, by team, with each team being on a seperate page of this site. Team cards and checklists are not affected and are not included here.
I will be adding team pages as I get time, and will update each team as I find new variations. This list is not complete and may never be complete, as the total # of variant cards is currently unknown.
 #1-11 Baltimore Colts Updated 8/5/03 **
 #13-23 Cleveland Browns Updated 2/13/05
 #25-35 Detroit Lions Updated 8/11/03 **
 #37-47 Los Angeles Rams Updated 2/13/05
 #49-59 New York Giants Updated 2/21/05
 #61-71 Chicago Bears Updated 2/13/05
 #73-83 Dallas Cowboys Updated 2/13/05
 #86-96 Green Bay Packers Updated 2/21/05
 #98-108 Minnesota Vikings Updated 2/6/05
 #110-120 Philadelphia Eagles Updated 2/21/05 **
 #122-132 Pittsburgh Steelers Updated 2/6/05
 #134-144 San Francisco 49ers Updated 9/6/03 **
 #146-156 St Louis Cardinals Updated 8/13/03
 #158-168 Washington Redskins Updated 2/21/05

** - Denotes that this team is complete as far as I am aware.

 Latest updates and additions
2/21/05 - Added Rosey Grier (Giants), Ron Kramer (Packers), Tim Brown (Eagles), Dick James and Claud Crabb (Redskins). It also marks another milestone as I believe the Eagles team is now as complete as it is going to get. More thanks go to the SBehme Collection for contributions of images.
6/28/14 - Been almost 10 years since I last updated this. Found an interesting uncut advertising panel which can be seen on the NOTES page.
Please note that I am not a printer and do not know the technical terms for all of this. I'm simply describing what I see and what I know.
The lithographic printing process that produced these cards uses a 4-color process, similar to a standard inkjet printer. That is to say that every color you see on the card is made using a combination of 4 different colors only. The colors are yellow, blue (cyan), red (magenta) and black.
In the example above, the card on the left (type A) appears to have a purple sky to the eye. If looked at under magnification, you will actually see blue, red, and a small amount of yellow colored dots. Combined, they give the illusion that it is purple. The card on the right (type B) appears to have a blue sky. Also looked at under magnification, you will see that it only has the blue and small amount of yellow colored dots. The red in the sky has been effectively removed.
I have blown up the 2 areas being pointed to by the blue A and B in the above scan. I chose these areas because they included portions of the sky, the trees, and the uniform, to get a better idea of what I am refering to.
Here is a 60x enlargement of the small square being pointed to as A. Notice that the uniform at the right, the trees in the lower left, and the sky above it, all contain various sizes of the 4 colored dots used in the process. The sky in particular is made up of blue, red, and yellow.
This 60x enlargement of the same area, pointed to as B above, shows all the same colored dots in the uniform at left and the trees in the bottom left. But, the sky now only contains blue and yellow. The red has been ommitted. This is consistant throughout the sky on the whole card. stopping, sharply at the trees, and at the players outline. The ONLY way for this to be able to happen is by masking the red off when the red screen was made.