23rd Jan2019

eBuying Comics: Week 11

by Ian Wells


This weeks edition is going to be a hodge podge of ideas. A Frankensteins monster of topics if you will. Or seeing as this is comics perhaps an amalgam of ideas is a better turn of phrase. Rather than go through those topics in an introduction (that looks like I’m trying to make up a word count) I will just jump straight into them and therefore avoid repetition. I will say though I will be referring to a number of topics from my previous 10 blogs so new and old readers may want to go back to those at some point.

Firstly I want to revisit my attempts to sell a copy of Western Adventure. In a nutshell Western Adventure is a British pulp magazine that reprinted material from the American pulp magazine Western Story Magazine. A friend of my Dad set me the challenge of trying to sell his copy of # without telling me it is completely wrecked. But I took the challenge and two years later it is still unsold. I have done a fair amount of research in trying to find a unique selling point to counter act the state of the condition. I have considered whether getting it professionally graded would be of benefit. You often see sought after comics with some damage on eBay with the CGC treatment fetching a pretty penny. I guess the quick answer is I don’t have a sought after item! I done some further research this week before placing my listing. I wanted to see of there were any listings in different or should I say better condition. I found two such listings. One for #10 from volume 2. The seller describes it as battered but complete, almost intact and readable. If mine didn’t have a portion of the cover missing I would grade them very similar. The bidding starts at £4.99 with free postage for this listing. Strangely enough the second listing is for #11 from volume 2 but from a different seller. This one is in better condition, described as a good copy with firm binding. Something mine doesn’t have! Mild tanning and some dog eared pages. Buy now for £5.40 with the price recently slashed from £10.80. I am watching these two items and will report back the final sale. Below is my new listing:

Vintage Pulp Magazine Western Adventure (#12-1957) Low Grade Copy

This listing is for a Street & Smiths Western Adventure #12 pulp magazine from 1957. Featuring six stories from six different authors and two non-fiction pieces. Illustrations throughout. Condition for a sixty plus year old pulp is as to be expected. It has been well read. The front cover carries the most damage. Heavily creased and a large tear in bottom right hand corner. All evident in the pictures. I have included a picture of the back cover to show the slight comparison in quality, it has all the hallmarks of an aged pulp magazine without being too badly affected. However the covers are only held on by one staple (top). Without the cover properly secure the spine has therefore received damage. The interiors fair much better. The pages only show moderate tanning and general dog-earring to the corners. No rips, tears or fading to interior pages with them all being perfectly readable. From a smoke free home the item will come packed between two pieces of cardboard in a padded envelope.

Starting Price £2 + £2 P+P

The second topic I wanted to attack was to have a more in depth look at writing listings. I wanted to use the information I learnt about grading and put into use all the correct terminology from Week 5. I have selected four issues of Marvel’s Tomb of Dracula for this venture:

Tomb of Dracula #18

Tomb of Dracula #18 (UK edition) A Bronze Age Horror comic published by Marvel Comics. Creative team: Marv Wolfman, Gene Colan and Tom Palmer. Co-starring Werewolf by Night. I would grade this comic as a 5.5 (F-) The cover has some creasing, with vibrant covers. There is however a stamp and pen mark from a previous seller right in the middle where the moon is. Minimal stress and creasing to the spine and around the staples. Interiors are clean and crisp with little sign of wear and tear. Some Marvel Chipping is evident. Minimal browning. From a smoke free home. Comic will come bagged and boarded.

Starting Price £4 + £2 P+P

Tomb of Dracula #24

Tomb of Dracula #24 (UK edition) A Bronze Age Horror comic published by Marvel Comics. Creative team: Marv Wolfman. Gene Colan and Tom Palmer. Starring Blade, Frank Drake and Rachel Van Helsing. I would grade this comic as a 3.0 (VG-) A vibrant cover with some light creases. One crease though not deep is the length of the cover. Some stress creases nearer the spine and some spine roll. Crisp and clean interiors with no rips, tears or fading. It carries the defect of a crossword having been filled in. Minimal browning. From a smoke free home. Comic will come bagged and boarded.

Starting Price £3 + £2 P+P

Tomb of Dracula #45

Tomb of Dracula #45 (US Newsstand edition) Bronze Age Horror Comic published by Marvel Comics. Creative team: Marv Wolfman, Gene Colan and Tom Palmer. Starring Blade and Hannibal King. I would grade this comic as a 8.0 (VF) The cover is vibrant in colour and free of any creases or tears. There is a small production smudge on the ‘L’ of Dracula. No creases or stress to the spine and no spine roll. Excellent interior pages. Very little browning, no rips, tears or fading. Staring Price £10 with a best offer option + £2 P+P

Tomb of Dracula #58

Tomb of Dracula #58 (UK edition)  A Bronze Age Horror comic published by Marvel Comics. Creative team: Marv Wolfman, Gene Colan and Tom Palmer. Blade solo story. I would grade this comic as a 7.0 (F/VF) A vibrant cover with slight sign of a reading crease and two small creases. One in top right corner, the other in the middle of bottom edge. Minimal stress to the spine though the spine has been rolled. Clean and crisp interiors. Some Marvel Chipping. No further defects to interiors. From a smoke free home. Will come bagged and boarded.

Starting Price £5 + £2 P+P

Key features I have pointed out include whether it is a UK or US edition. Then US editions are stated if they are newsstand or direct market. Other important information is what era the comic is from and the genre. As for the condition I start with the cover obviously. Highlighting any defects is honest information to provide and key to investors. Condition to the spine is always a sticking point with collectors so I make a mention of that along with the covers condition before moving to interiors. I may have been over complicating things using the term ‘Marvel Chipping’ but people in the know will know and maybe be impressed. I felt it was a good idea to put my opinion on the grade in both the numerical and abbreviated version. However looking at it now I felt I should have put the grade in the title. Especially with the higher ones. This is something to consider when relisting. Before I started this blog I have tried to sell this items before and as I am listing them now they obviously went unsold. It will be interesting to see if this more in depth listing gains more views and potentially more bidders. You never know what is going through a buyers head as they browse items. What I would really like to do is interview people who buy my items, particularly the older back issues. It may be a simple case of 5-10 question questionnaire, so watch this space!

In my last blog of 2018 I spoke about holy grail comics. These were comics I want to/need to complete parts of my collection but are very expensive! I have come up with the following list of comics which are important to the story of characters I follow but are much more affordable. Throughout 2019 I hope to knock all these off my wish list and will report back as and when I do. I will talk about things like price, if it was buy now or a hard fought bid. I’ll describe the condition and why I went for one listing over another. Lastly as I knock them off the list I will tell you why they are important and why I want them, if you haven’t guessed by then already. So here is the list:

  • Classic X-Men #10
  • Daredevil #150
  • Incredible Hulk #340
  • Mighty World Of Marvel #198-#199
  • Special Marvel Edition #16
  • X-Men #5 (vol. 2)



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