Zap Comix Registry Project
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It's 1 year to WW Chicago, got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark...


My recent discovery of the Zap Comix registry set, coupled with my recent trip to Wizard World Chicago when I acquired a lovely #4 1st, has me revisiting my Zap Comix collection. I don't often grade books anymore or buy slabbed books (it does happen), but it has always been one of my collecting goals to assemble the best run of 1st print Zap Comix that I could afford. Perhaps my primary collecting goal.


I began acquiring Zaps c. 2000-2002. I bought almost exclusively from Apex Novelties publisher Don Donahue... my goal was to buy copies from him and then find those first prints that he did not have (e.g. 1, 2, 0, 3, 4, 10, 12). As most u-comix collectors know, Don Donahue's catalog and eBay auctions were some of the best kept secrets in undergrounds (may he RIP). Any books that Donahue lacked were always going to be hard to find. For a long time I acquired books from him and scoured for the others. Twice c. 2004 I submitted books to PGX (once to CGC) to learn how to develop my grading eye at the upper echelon. The results were always pretty good and so I continued to acquire raw books over the next 8+ years.


ANYways, once I saw the registry set it renewed my interest in grading comix. And so I started my Zap Registry Project. Here it is:


Pre-screen the following books at 9.4:

7 Donahue copy

8 Donahue copy

9 Donahue copy; $1 cvr... held off grading this til I was certain there wasn't a 75c cvr as listed in Kennedy 1982

10 found in wild

12 found in wild

12 bought at WW Chicago

13 bought at WW Chicago

14 bought from Last Gasp

14 bought from Last Gasp

15 bought from Last Gasp

15 bought from Last Gasp


Crack PGX & resub to CGC (Pre-screen at 9.4):

5 9.4

7 9.6

11 9.6

13 9.8

All are Donahue copies, so the condition is there


Uncertain what to do about the following:

3 PGX 9.0 signed by S Clay Wilson; likely will keep as-is. While I would love a nice CGC Zap 3 1st, this book is personalized to me, so I prolly will never sell and not certain I want a Qualified book in my set


4 PGX 8.0 from Donahue. I bought his last copy of 4 advertised as VG and it graded higher than I would have predicted. IMHO this book would likely grade down upon resub to CGC (~7.0-7.5). It is likely a moot point as I would peg my WW Chicago copy acquired from Steve Wyatt at 9.2++.


6 PGX 9.4 Picked in the wild; my only copy right now. My Donahue copies came back from PGX as 9.2 and color touch 9.4. I sold both on eBay as a lot to the same collector. Not sure what to do? Likely will crack, resub, prescreen.


10 PGX 9.0 Picked in the wild. My new copy will definitely beat it, so I am keeping this book as-is.


Wild cards:

3 Cracked PGX 8.0. I bought this book for a song and popped it out to see if PGX got it right. I believe they did, but b/c this book was acquired only a few years ago I have a fear of microtrimming along the top edge. I was thinking of PROscreening this book for resto prior to any further action. I also acquired a FN 6.0 raw at WW Chicago '11 that I am uncertain what to do with.


4 The WW Chicago purchase, a raw VFNM stunner, and one that will be CGC slabbed no matter what. I hope it comes back 9.2++ I think the book can over perform.


All this may result in the following doubles/undercopies:

3, 4, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 14

These may be used to upgrade over time or offset grading cost



The cost and TAT for submission to CGC are big barriers. I started working on my booth for the October VCC and will use any money I make as seed money for this project. I hope to accomplish all of this by WW Chicago '13, i.e. giving myself one year (TAT >100 days).


I think I am a little weak in...

3 (perhaps)



I added them back to my want list


As part of all of this I am also going to create a Homegrown Hardcover of Zap Comix #0-15 through the library binding company. I have already acquired the content, so it is just a matter of submission. This way I have all of the issues in a readily accessible and readable format (I cut up books so that upon binding the wrap-around covers could be seen as one image or the 69/flip books could be read without flipping the bound volume upside down etc).


I am also eagerly awaiting The Complete Zap Comix (Fantagraphics) book. Last year they announced the project at SD Comic Con, due out late 2012, but since then there has been no word in the press or on their website. I cannot wait to see this version and how it compares to my homegrown version. Wish it were out in time for Christmas.


Thanks for reading!


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I have stack of material of which I am not certain whether I should have it graded.


In it a copy of ZAP 3, which might be of interest to you.



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