• entries
    46
  • comments
    0
  • views
    93

Entries in this journal

 

Tales of... voodoo? Sets gone bad?

Uh my collection got bigger? Anyone see their registered sets have funny additions? My X-Men sets are showing "Tales of Voodoo" (a book I've never collected) in my Uncanny X-Men sets At least after a google search, I've discovered a new book I'm interested in haha... To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

01/28/2014

 

The Pyramiding Scheme

aka "laddering the collection" So I've taken some time off to streamline my X-Men collection, focusing on the core of X-Men 1 through the Byrne era. I sold off a number of later X-Men slabs, mostly 9.8s and I just recently sat down to add my new acquisitions to my scores. I was pleasantly surprised at how many books I've been accruing that are worth a decent amount of points. I'll never have a high score to win an award (at least not in the near future) but as I've been selling off lower copies and getting higher grade ones, I can't help but notice that many books I've bought have gone up in value, or at least made me money since I did my original deal hunting. A fellow collector told me the term for this is "Pyramiding" so that the sales of the lower items fund the purchase of the higher ones. I thought it was funny that "Pyramid Scheme" often implies such evil connotations. When I tell people I'm a pyramider, they assume I'm doing something illicit or underhanded. But as I sell my books, I get brief enjoyment after the sale when I get a request to transfer certification. Somewhere, another collector is on my heels. Lower on the ladder, but climbing. It makes me feel good about a hobby that is more and more often maligned in the press by the "evil" speculators and "malevolent" flippers. I am buying books for investment. I am flipping books. But the top of the pyramid is a collection of my favorite super heroes, with a value that will hopefully someday be a part of a diversified portfolio, or an heirloom. So tonight, I'm just reflecting on my past purchases and sales, and I'm looking forward to the upcoming Allentown Comicon, where I'm hoping to get some collector a great deal on a sale, and maybe for myself get a great purchase. If you're going to the show, shoot me a message and we'll keep this great hobby going. Mike To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

11/04/2013

 

To John Hancock or not John Hancock

Signature Series books In my quest to fill out and upgrade my primary collection of Silver and Bronze X-Men, I've had some frustration recently in finding some books at prices and conditions I would like to buy that are NOT signed. More and more I see yellow label slabs with Stan Lee usually that seem to be overpriced in the market, or just... don't fit my Universal grade collection. X-Men 58 (First Havok) is becoming a bugger to find in blue label at the right price. I started to wonder if "all the good books are gone" in that many high grades are getting signed now and converted to yellows. I'm not sure if this is something that will just take over the market, and on the top level, would an Amazing Fantasy 15 for example really be worth more if Stan Lee signed it vs a pure virgin untouched copy? If not for the CGC stamp, most signed items become green qualifieds.   And I stradle the line of hypocrit. I like getting some books signed, such as Cap 100 by Stan Lee, and some other goodies, but these are for my personal memorabilia collection that I don't intend to sell. My X-Men, although part of my fanboy hysterical collecting, will someday be sold off when I retire, or be intended as part of my estate. Are other people like myself who are looking for specific books UNSIGNED finding some difficulties in the search? And is anyone noticing this trend? I am again by no means bashing the yellows, but is this becoming more of the "norm" and any thoughts on what it means long term to collecting as signature series continues to add to its ranks? To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

04/19/2013

Coupons Coupons Coupons

what to do with my 4 gradings I've been sitting for a bit on my CGC coupons from my membership renewal. Recently I've had a bit of a re-org in my collection; if you've looked at my sets you'll notice that my X-Men have gone down over the past few months as I've been selling off my post-Byrne X-Men. Granted, my 99% sets are whittled down, but in the end, my goal is to have Uncanny X-Men 1-144 more or less with annuals as a nice investment and personal collection (investment side is the ongoing battle to upgrade to those 9.8's. Maybe never for some of the big issues, but that's the fun). So I've been trying to see if I can grab a raw X-Men #1 for one of the grading certs, but with the scattered restoration bugs on many of the sub 5.0 copies ("color touch by kids") and markings (writing or stamps on the cover), I think I'm going to stick with buying a slab. I picked up a really nice HONEY WEST #1 at a show. I think it was undervalued by the seller, and honestly, it might pull a 9.0 with the corner, spine, and page condition. It looks like it's been in a mylar since it was purchased. I'm not a big Honey West fan, but it's a fantastic photo cover... ... just like the Gold Key Dark Shadows #2 I snagged from a bin at a local shops. Barnabas in all his glory, suitable for slabbing and displaying. Will go well with my goth and horror items. I also have a terribly bad Amazing Fantasy 12 that deserves a slab for the preservationist side. It's probably a 2.5 but without the slab, it's 1) hard to sell down the road and more importantly 2) hard to preserve without a fear of "is today the day the cover decides to disintigrate?" So there's some of my ideas. Wizard World Philly is coming up and CGC will once again be on the spot, so I might gather a few more fun issues to have graded. I really do enjoy the "shopping" experience of the membership certificate grading coupon. I always feel like it's a wish list of books to grade when otherwise my submissions in bulk come down to a cost vs turnaround time vs priority matrix of decisions. (Inspired by Tnerb's coupon posting...) To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

03/29/2013

 

I am the 99% now!

And 100 too! Man, finally got my April Pittsburgh Comicon submissions back and updated my registry. As a result, I've now accomplished the following: X-Men 1-66 98% X-Men 67-93 100% X-Men 94-143 100% and my big collection goal: X-Men 1-201 99% Just missing a copy of X-Men #1 now. Granted, I have some dogs in the collection, but the first part is amassing the bulk of the issues. I feel like I can breathe a sigh of relief and now sit back work on upgrading issues. Though I doubt I'll ever catch Ghost Town for the highest rated 100% set in X-Men 1-201, it's nice to be the second most completed set as a hobbyist collector without a store front, deep pockets, or a charitable uncle donating his collection to me. Ghost Town, I'm still gunning for you!   Also got back a Hansi 7.5 and two lower grade Skyman issues to finish off the 1-4 run. Phew. To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

10/20/2012

 

CGC milestone... and my books are almost ready

Wow So the CGC announced that they graded their 2 millionth book, which kind of puts into perspective how many books they have to go through, and that we expect a high quality of service in the grades to get these certifications i.e. I don't think they have somewho flips new books over, thumbs the pages, and goes "yep". It's an arduous process. I saw the book listed in their article/promo was Thief of Thieves #1 from 2012. I had to laugh wondering how many books in queue were close to number million but might have been "it" if the owner had or hadn't ordered a different service level, or mailed in versus drop off, etc. So it's September now, and this is one of my favorite months. Why? Because some of my potential "book number 2 million" will come back. Every year I drop off a big handful at the Pittsburgh Comicon in April, and the turnaround times always hit the post Labor Day window. It's like a back to school gift, plus it gives me a nice pre-Christmas present, as I can now flip my lower grade copies on the ones I've had upgraded in my collection. At least, that's how I try to think positive when it comes to CGC. Love the product, appreciate the process... but hate the waiting. To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

09/05/2012

 

Killing my registry sets softly

It was easier as a kid to just buy "cool books" and throw them in a box... I've been thinking a lot lately about my Uncanny X-Men 1-201 run that I've been working on. I have one of the most complete sets in the registry, and did a lot of work upgrading my copies of existing issues. Then I started a 3-front war between economics, patience (or lack of) and hobby lust. My set has reached the point where in order to get some books at a nicer grade, I have to start shelling out bigger and bigger chunks of money. I can handle that, I can save. But if I want the books faster, I should pre-sell the books I need to upgrade... which will drop my registry score, albeit not by much when I'm ditching a 4.5 copy of X-Men 58, for example. I have a spreadsheet I keep with all my issues and the scores, and within certain ranges I have a color code for "adequate" and "goal". I break it down like this: Issue Adequate GOAL 1 3.5 5 2-10 5 8 11-30 8 8.5 31-50 8.5 9 51-100 9 9.4 101-130 9.4 9.8 131-201 9.8 9.8 Annuals 9.8 9.8 Giant1 8 9 Giant2 9.4 9.8 Now I've decided to add a third tier/color code, which is "SELL". Anything a full 1.0 grade under the adequate will be put up for auction. Will it hurt my scores? Short term, yes. But long term, I'm hoping it pays off in being able to patiently seek out hidden gems and deals, and someday, I swear, I'll have a complete set worthy of recognition. Does anyone else obsess this much with organizing their collection process?

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

08/28/2012

 

There's no reason to be a jerk from the get-go

Already regretting selling a book on ebay So I just sold two books in one lot, a couple of Michael Turner cover Wolverine issues, one being a signature series. After taking a couple of days to pay, the buyer contacted me with rather explicit and demeaning instructions on how to pack the slabs. They went over the top with the directions and concluded with " I do NOT want cracked CGC cases." My first reaction? "No SPIT, Sherlock". My second was to cancel the sale. But I responded back with a nice email saying certainly, and then I asked if they needed signature confirmation as some people do not have ideal mail situations; most books I get are not signature required, unless it's a really big ticket item. His one sentence reply? "well I guess that would help". Nothing else. I think people really need to watch what they say on the internet. I still want to sell these books, but I don't NEED to. I considered re-reading the emails. It could be interpretted as someone being witty and sarcastic, but in an email, people get ticked or misread tone very easily. So when dealing with people online, please remember that you need to stick to the business, strict factual sentences, or be over the top friendly to ensure someone, like me, doesn't misread your emails and think you may be more trouble than you're worth... and cancel the sale... which leaves you more out in the cold than me, quite frankly. I can just go to the second highest bidder. You'd have to wait for the next available book. Sorry to vent, and on the off chance you are the buyer and you come across this, I've treated you with nothing but professional sales respect on the transaction, and please note that some people not like me will be far more vindictive and cancel the sale. Do unto others as you'd have done to you, and treat everyone with respect when you are making a transaction. We're all fans of comics and slabs, so let's start there and maybe we'll all keep this hobby as cool as it is. To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

08/22/2012

 

Same day dropoff, two different journeys

Pittsburgh (April) Comic Con submissions So I dropped off two batches of books with CGC at the Pittsburgh ComicCon. I do this every year, and it usually takes until September to get the books back. Funny thing. The other day I checked my status and saw that one invoice was graded! Oh happy day to me. Books were getting done! Today they are marked as shipped. The other books are still in "Verified" status. The batch on the way to me is 4 modern era books, and the ones waiting are 20 economy older books. The books I'd rather get back first are the ones still in verified. So let it be said that turnaround times can still exceed expectations, if you set them low and casual. To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

07/20/2012

 

Walking Dead #100

Ah variant covers So I decided to sign up for a deal at my local shop to get the package they offered off all the WD #100 covers for a flat price. I was thinking about slabbing them, flipping some, and keeping others, but as a WD fan, I also wouldn't mind keeping these in my permanent collection (I strongly believe in never collecting something unless at the end of the day you like the item and don't mind holding it even if the price is nearly zero in 5-10 years) That said, what's other people's thoughts on WD100? I made my order a couple weeks ago and then read this: http://investcomics.com/weekly-hot-picks/investcomics-comic-hot-picks-7-11-12 Keep 'em, flip 'em, or don't bother; what are other people doing? To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

07/08/2012

 

September

Earth, Wind and FIRE! My Uncanny X-Men 1-201 run is waiting on a few books to come back that are in my "100 business day turnaround" batch. I'm the 2nd most complete set in the group, and I'm closing in on the top 10 scores... and impatience is a terrible thing. This has led me to some recent purchases to upgrade some JB run issues from 9.6s to 9.8s, and the spending curve is getting steeper to upgrade my books. I've started doing "bang for the buck" score upgrades, combining information on the book's "value" versus price vs the point bump in my rank. If the price is X% under the alleged value and I can get Y% change in points on my existing book, the purchase is made. Does anyone else put this much thought into their purchases for registered sets? I need to underscore this with the fact that I wouldn't be doing this if I wasn't a giant giant giant X-Men fan. As many people have said about collecting (and investing), "GO WITH WHAT YOU KNOW, AND NEVER BE CAUGHT HOLDING THE BAG UNLESS YOU LOVE WHAT'S INSIDE". To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

06/28/2012

 

Wizard World Philly Thursday PM

5/31/12 Well I got a chance to swing in on Thursday night for the preview. Dropped off some books for on-site grading (one batch is already done, saw my orders up top updated with the invoice) and got some mixed to happy results; my Next Men 1st appearance of Hellboy came back a 9.2 and I was hoping for a 9.4. Mostly moderns done so far but my 1940s-1960s books are on deck. Lots of good vendors so far. Saw a LOT of slabs around including a convention special Killing Joke wall for $39.99, great price if you want a cherry copy. Spoke to a few vendors, some high end books as usual feel a little overpriced, but was able to work out some cash deals. On a side note, it looks like they have a better handle on the ticket line system; there's another convention downstairs so they have a ticket corral up stairs in one of the big rooms. If you remember waiting outside in the heat last year, this is much much more awesomer. Yes. I just said awesomer when referring to waiting in line. Will be back on Saturday and Sunday, happy hunting to those who go! To see old comments for this Journal entry, click here. New comments can be added below.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

06/01/2012

 

Thanks Gemma

Got the 411 I contacted the CGC and got a nice reply back from Gemma on how to recertify my "invalid" book. I want to give a nice shout out and thanks for the quick attention and potential resolution on getting my new book re-certed. (I just made that word up). Thanks to all those who sent me replies, information, and horror stories!

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

05/15/2012

 

Grade to be VERIFIED?

WTH? "The grade for this comic must be verified. Your request has been added to an admin queue and will be resolved by CGC." Ok, maybe one of the veterans can help me out on this one. I recently purchased a graded copy of X-Men 99 on eBay and this message popped up when I put it into my registry. I've had typos before, or put books in the wrong slot by accident, and I've had more than plenty of the transfer request messages, but I've NEVER seen this. Any ideas? My biggest fear is that somehow this is a book that has been reported as stolen somehow and this is the "PC" way to let me know it's being investigated. My second biggest fear is that something about the number is questionable such as a recert that someone is trying to recirculate. Any fear-appeasing emails welcome.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

05/14/2012

 

Grader notes, my 2 cents (or $5)

Grrrrader notes I'm not a fan of the fees for the notes, but I also do not really use the service nor have I required it in the past. I personally feel these should be included with any purple label submission (the description of the S/A on the label is sometimes clear, sometimes not). What I fear is that somehow people will start pushing these into the costs of a book at resale. I've seen some price snobbery about CGC cases and labels. The grade is for the BOOK. If the case is uncracked and unopened, it doesn't matter if it has a scrape or scuff or hell stickers and magic marker all over it (side note, I've stopped using comic link due to the stickers I've had on the cases. I don't like the look and find them a pain to take off) but the book's VALUE is still the same. A 9.8 copy of Hulk 181 is the same whether or not it has a scuff on the case. If the notes are registered and stored with CGC, I don't want to see people trying to jack up prices because they included a print copy of the notes. So while people are debating the cost and act of being charged for these, I'm asking for people to look down the road at some of the downsides possible for books. However, I know I will be getting notes on a few of my 4-6.5 range books to help educate myself better on some of the grading process.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

05/04/2012

 

The Doors, Track 11 (or side 2, last song)

This is The End... I heard "The End" in my head as I was packing my last CGC bundle for live drop off at the Pittsburgh Comicon a couple weeks ago. I decided to throw in all of my ungraded remaining X-Men for the sake of getting a grade for completion (still missing issue #1 and #3) but I felt this sense of completion, the closing of a chapter. Work has been busy and I've been reprioritizing while watching my collection gaps continue to close. So I thought, this is the end of my project. I can't get into the new A vs X stories, I'm losing steam on modern books, and I thought, "Could it be? Am I done with comics?" I see older and older fans buying the books I like/collect, and the new stuff the kids are into just doesn't appeal to me as a fan or collector. Heck I love the Walking Dead, but at this point I'd only be into getting the trades. I could buy a pretty okay copy of X-Men #1 for the cost of Walking Dead #1-5 9.8 (since no one seems to want any books from 1990 onwards unless they are perfect; a 9.4 is a GREAT copy! But I digress...) So as I was trolling the floor of the Pittsburgh Comicon on the final day, looking for last bargains, I realized my collecting days were drawing to an end. Then I pick up a copy of Nick Fury, Agent of Shield #1(you know the Steranko cover...) and Atoman #2. I'm still all in!

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

04/30/2012

 

I should just take my grading assumptions and downgrade everything 2 points.

Yep. Grades. Next 4 grades are in. Flashback to a prior journal... with lots of cut and paste. So I got my CGC renewal coupon and decided to put in 4 books right away. Grades are in: Avengers #5: Thought upwards of a 7, came in at a 4.5. Good thing it was bought on the cheap. This is a flipper, not a keeper. Daredevil 53: ... got it for $25 and looks like it could hit as high as a 9.2 if I'm lucky, but thinking an 8.5 One of those covers I just loved too much to resist. Came back as an 8.0 X-Men 100-101: Picked these up last year at Pittsburgh from a different guy than sold me my X-Men 3 SA (see my old journals for that one) Both are really nice with a corner flaw, probably looking at a 9-9.2, and very affordable prices when I picked them up. I think $100-120 for both together, considering the ebay/comiclink prices for a 9.8 copy. I'll take a lesser book without costing me a mortgage payment. 100 was an 8.5, that's okay. #101 was a 6.5 which is a big let down, especially since it's white pages. Will have to review the graders notes and see what I missed. I try to learn from these experiences best as a I can, including comparing to the Overstreet grader's guide. The Avengers #5 had a full notation on the back from the prior owner explaining the "flaws" so I'll have to compare how they ranked against the CGC downgrades. "Thanks for reading"

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

03/07/2012

 

Selling the cheap books

CGC loss leaders from my collection So as I've been laddering up the issues in my X-Men 1-201 collection (very proud of some of the recent acquisitions), I've been moving the lesser value copies on ebay and at shows. While some of these books may have been acquired for 5-25 bucks and the CGC grading cost was between 20-30, I'm not always able to get all that money back. The CGC costs are averaged out over different tiers/services/coupons, and I'm cool with that. Many of the books would probably get only a small value back ungraded, as these are books in the 3.0-5.5 range for the most part. With the CGC slab, I'm able to get anywhere from $20-50 each on ebay currently. My "losses" are paper losses written off over acquisitions from 2-5 years ago, so it's not a loss I feel in my wallet, it's been amortized at this point. But it's impressive to see someone want to spend $30 on a 2.0 CGC book that otherwise will barely draw $5 on eBay. So I'd like to give a shout out to the CGC slabs for helping preserve some of my capital. I'll be bringing more of these to the Philly Comicon in March, some will be $20 a slab blowouts, others priced below overstreet for those looking for bargains. I know some people don't like solitations on the boards, but if you're look for some cheap CGC X-Men from the 1-201 run, shoot me a message, I'll send you my ebay seller name, and as a gratis I'll give you a "secret word" if you want to bid that will be good for free shipping. I don't like to act like a book flipper when it comes to grading, but I look at as part of my collection process. We all have to start somewhere, and sometimes you need to sell the dogs to get the tigers.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

02/23/2012

 

Next 4 in for grading (coupon submission) with mid-high hopes

Next 4 So I got my CGC renewal coupon and decided to put in 4 books right away. Avengers #5: picked this up for a $100 barter session and it's really nice given that it's in the 7-8 range. Hoping for an 8, but less than 7 would be a let down. I couldn't resist it... Daredevil 53: ... and this was part of the deal, got it for $25 and looks like it could hit as high as a 9.2 if I'm lucky, but thinking an 8.5 One of those covers I just loved too much to resist. X-Men 100-101: Picked these up last year at Pittsburgh from a different guy than sold me my X-Men 3 SA (see my old journals for that one) Both are really nice with a corner flaw, probably looking at a 9-9.2, and very affordable prices when I picked them up. I think $100-120 for both together, considering the ebay/comiclink prices for a 9.8 copy. I'll take a lesser book without costing me a mortgage payment. Side note: I love paying in cash when it comes to picking up books! This put my X-Men 1-201 run (including annuals/giant-size/king size) at 15 issues left to be graded/obtained. I have some "on the way" purchases that aren't in my collector slots yet, and I still need to obtain copies of #1 and #3 but it looks like with some careful planning, I can put my collection into "complete" by the end of the year! Also, been selling some of my lower copies back on ebay and will bring to the Philly Comicon next month, but more on that later... Happy collecting everyone. Be patient, be prudent.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

02/17/2012

 

Comic Link good, Comic Link BAD

Frustrating Well a key book that I want/need is listed on Comiclink but the ordered was cancelled because the book is not available. Then I realized I had tried to order this book before and the same thing happened (I must have missed the email somewhere in the last bundle I ordered). THEN I realized that the book has been "up" since March of 2011. Seriously, WTF. I dig CL, they have great prices and I have dealt with them on the phone/email and had a great experience, but can they please police their inventory or get a listing dumped if it's been cancelled numerous times? Why does their system allow that? I know I'm b!tching but I'm not "mad", just frustrated because it's a tough book to find CGC'd, let alone in a nice grade.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

02/09/2012

 

Cash in, cash out, and a blog plug

Who Watches the Wallet? Well the bonus from work is coming in the next paycheck so I went on a comic link splurge for some X-Men CGC upgrades, I'll report back with the bid successes. I've got 4 books that are nice copies in the 9.0-9.4 range from the original run that I'm eyeing up. Those 9.6's and 9.8's are just too much for me to swing right now. I've also got to get cracking on putting the other lesser grade copies up on ebay... hmmm... might be a good SuperBowl project. Also, I'm putting together my signature list for Stan Lee at Pittsburgh Comicon in April. I'm bringing one of my Marvel Omnibus hardcovers to have signed for personal trinket collection, but I'm contemplating whether I want to go rogue and get something worthy of a "Green Label" for my private stash as well. Stan Lee is Stan Lee, and having an old X-Men with his name on it would be priceless for me, even if the resale can't be verified.   And to plug the blog, I wrote my own 2 cents on the Watchmen Prequel Project from DC. http://jackowick.wordpress.com/2012/02/02/why-i-dont-hate-the-watchmen-prequel-idea/ Have a great February everyone, and don't forget to set aside a portion of your upcoming tax returns for some comics!

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

02/03/2012

 

Restored copy sells well, thanks to CGC

Woo hoo! Teaser! Ahhhh. A big sigh of relief today. I wrote earlier about the hearbreak of getting a dreaded purple label on my X-Men 3, a 4.5 SA for slight touch up and a cover tear repair. I'm not into flipping, but my collection plan is to have all blue labels. I put the book up on eBay to try to get some money back towards buying a new raw or low graded copy. The auction sat for almost a full week at around the $30 mark until the last day. Suddenly, it jumped up to $160. The bidder had the dreaded "1" feedback rating, but it turned out to be a person who only bought one other item, a 3.5 ASM 1 for $2500+. My faith was restored. In the end, another bidder grabbed it for a hair over $200, and paid promptly. It's very tough to judge the value in dollars on a restored copy, especially the silvers and golds. Luckily, the buyer saw a value book and grabbed it, and I can't help but thank the CGC grade for giving the buyer confidence in what they were buying. In checking and re-re-re-checking my records, I believe this book was one I had original purchased raw for between $150 and $180. While it may be a zero-sum game, the CGC service helped me preserve my investment. Again, I'm not a flipper, but I'm glad this worked out that I can restart my quest to finish my permanent collection. Thanks to Tnerb for giving the book a look over the other weekend at Philly Comicon and discussing the noted areas of restoration. We do a lot online, but at the end of the day, a physical copy needs a physical eye to appreciate a book.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

01/24/2012

 

7000 points vs 100%

Collecting Goals For This Year Well it's that time of year when my CGC membership renewal comes up (please no sidebars on the whole "paying for membership vs 10% discount thing) and I'm looking at my collection goals for my X-Men 1-201 collection, X-Men Olympics. I'm sitting about 7000 points below the next jump in rank, at about #26 right now. I've got the 3rd most complete collection in the run at 88% and I'm looking at my next decisions for the year. I mostly need to fill out my issues between 100-134 to get the most bang for my buck, looking to get some 9.4 or higher in the range. Yes, I'll settle for a 9.4 of a classic book, but those 9.8s on eBay (and comiclink) just look way overpriced at the buy-it-nows, and the auctions are an ongoing hit or miss luck/timing battle. My X-Men 3 restored is on ebay currently, and I need to get a nice blue label copy or an unrestored raw to fill that spot. And there's X-Men #1, which I'll take in any grade above a 3.5 if finances this year allow. So while I'd like to complete my run in slabs, I would like to get nice copies. My early Silver X-Men are a hit or miss of grading and pricing combinations, so I'm happy with the 7.5s but my goal of the next couple years is keep laddering up copies, get an 8.5 here or there, and keep building the set. For some people, I know that it's an impossiblity to put out the money for a nice collection. For others, I know my collection is a laugh to them, seeing a 3.0 copy of X-Men 50 currently registered. But to each his own. I'd love to have an all 9.8 run, but as a person who does not make a living off of comics, this is not easy at all. So this year, I'll settle for 100% or 7000+ more points. Either one will make me very happy. Of course, there's still those other ungraded books lying around like my extra Skyman 1-4 copies...

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

01/18/2012

 

Scheduled to Graded!

A mixed bag, but recovered from depression. So my 3 collector coupon submissions are graded! Here's the breakdown: X-Men 3 Apparent SA 4.5 While I am disappointed in the SA, I was thinking this book would be about a 3-3.5, so there's one big plus! Obviously the SA is a setback but it gives me hope in being able to flip this towards a same/better copy... unrestored. X-Men 4 Universal 7.0 This was a bit of an X-periment ha ha. I bought this at a deep discount as a PGX rated 7; I've had two prior PGX books and one graded higher by a half point (Captain America went from 5.5 to 6.0) so I'm glad there is a consistency in silver age mid-upper mid grades. Have faith buyers, if you find a PGX online and want to get it redone as a CGC! X-Men 56 Universal 8.0 This was bought at a deep discount from a cash multibook purchase at Wizard World Philly. I was hoping for an 8.5, but I got this book so cheap that I won't complain! I've got my run really coming together now in my registered set. I've got about 26 left to get graded, 28 if you count two purple labels in the set. 9.8s from 145 onward, aiming to get 9.4 or better for all the post Giant-Sized 1 books, 8.5 or better in the reprint run, and aiming for 8+ for the original run. Obviously going to take a lot of time and more money, especially since my only missing book is X-Men 1. But I'll settle for a 5.0 or better on that when the time comes in 2012. Happy holidays to all, may all your books be Universal Grades, and I'll be at the Philly Comicon January 15th with lots of $1 or less books plus some deep discounted CGC slabs in the back of the room. Excelsior! (Always wanted to say that at the right time, like starting a slow clap...)

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

12/19/2011

 

Scheduled for Depression

Waiting for the shoe to drop So I checked on my 20 day submission coupons and saw it was scheduled for grading. Great, right? Then I looked in to the received details for the first time... my X-Men number 3 is an Apparent SA. It wouldn't have mattered if I knew this 19 days ago, yesterday, whenever, but it looks like I've got another hack job book. I'm going to go through my ebay receipts and other receipts to track down the seller, but I think this may have been the copy I picked up at the Pittsburgh Comic Con this year... and if that's where it was from, I know the face of the guy who sold it and will give him a talking to next time I see him. I find a lot of the early X-Men ungraded go for much much cheaper than the CGCs, but this is the risk you run. I keep a pocket blacklight for checking color touches, but some things I still can't detect well in person if someone did a good enough job. Oh well. Look for a purple graded X-Men 3 up on ebay in a couple weeks at a deep discount... because no one's going to buy that... I wanted this for my permanent collection. Sigh.

duckduckmike

duckduckmike

12/16/2011