Heritage pulp auctions
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Figured I'd start a thread to discuss some of the upcoming books.  We have both the Rainone collection with a bunch of Spicys, as well as some Weird Tales coming up in the comics signature auction.  

 

Although it's a nice selection of books, I really have to say that the grading looks terrible across the board.  I don't see a single book in either auction that appears accurately graded.  Some are 2-3 grades off.  Am I the only one who feels this way?  

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My personal approach at auction is to disregard a grade and look carefully at the item and determine what I would pay for that copy. There are some VERY sharp ones coming up. I remember when Joe listed some of them in the sales forum here ... I think some of them will sell for much more than his original ask. GOD BLESS...

-jimbo(a friend of jesus)(thumbsu

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3 minutes ago, Bookery said:

I disagree with this a bit.  I think in a collectibles world of 10-point scales, it isn't hard to get an idea of what a 3 is vs. a 10, or a 7, regardless of whether it's a comic, a poster, a pulp, a card, etc.  It's not that people need to adjust their grading for each different collectible, it's that they need to adjust their expectations.  With pulps, a vg (4.0) is a solid collector's item, and in many cases a 6.0 will be a great addition to one's collection.  Pulps in 8.0 or above are pretty rare (not counting some later digests), and although a couple of years back I had a few Weird Tales that I graded as 9.0s... it's a grade statistically insignificant enough that I didn't assign it a valuation in the guide (topping out at 8.0 for listing purposes, much as Overstreet tops out at 9.2 for comics).  But I still think a "vg" pulp will overall look pretty much like a "vg" golden-age comic.  My 2c.

I don't disagree with your thoughts on this really and I know you wrote the book, quite literally(worship)

I think the overhangs present some complications to the grading of pulps as compared to comics. I could show examples of VG golden age books with quite significant visible defects and some that present as Fine. I think that pulps can be the same. I don't know that I have yet seen a pre-WW2 pulp in person with an overhang that if CGC standards were applied would be a 9.2 because of some tiny imperfections in the overhang.

There is a curve, for sure, in the way golden age comics are CGC graded versus silver age versus bronze, etc. Maybe this curve is not supposed to be there in theory but it is definitely there in practice. I think if pulps end up with 3rd party grading there will be a bit of a curve again but I do not believe it will be even as significant as it is between golden age comics and more modern comics. 

If anyone sees anything they feel is a noticeable mis-grade please feel free to email the link of the book to me at RickA@HA.com and we will review it.(thumbsu

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32 minutes ago, Ricksneatstuff said:

I don't disagree with your thoughts on this really and I know you wrote the book, quite literally(worship)

I think the overhangs present some complications to the grading of pulps as compared to comics. I could show examples of VG golden age books with quite significant visible defects and some that present as Fine. I think that pulps can be the same. I don't know that I have yet seen a pre-WW2 pulp in person with an overhang that if CGC standards were applied would be a 9.2 because of some tiny imperfections in the overhang.

There is a curve, for sure, in the way golden age comics are CGC graded versus silver age versus bronze, etc. Maybe this curve is not supposed to be there in theory but it is definitely there in practice. I think if pulps end up with 3rd party grading there will be a bit of a curve again but I do not believe it will be even as significant as it is between golden age comics and more modern comics. 

If anyone sees anything they feel is a noticeable mis-grade please feel free to email the link of the book to me at RickA@HA.com and we will review it.(thumbsu

Yeah... we're really not much apart on this.  I looked over some random images in the auction, and from what I can tell, they're pretty close to how I would grade them.  Though I said most collectibles should align along similar grading patterns, I agree that one still has to account for various idiosyncrasies (for instance, folds in a 1940s one-sheet are not a flaw, etc.).  Pulp overhangs are one of those that get cut a lot of slack without counting off as much of the grade as other flaws might.

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I think some of the books that Rick re-graded,  are graded much more accurately.

The ones graded before were off by as much is two full grades.

Rick has certainly helped tighten the grading up,  which is awesome!

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Just placed my thrill bids .... now to decide which few to get serious with, and that won't be easy. GOD BLESS...

-jimbo(a friend of jesus)(thumbsu

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On 11/7/2020 at 9:41 AM, Ricksneatstuff said:

I don't disagree with your thoughts on this really and I know you wrote the book, quite literally(worship)

I think the overhangs present some complications to the grading of pulps as compared to comics. I could show examples of VG golden age books with quite significant visible defects and some that present as Fine. I think that pulps can be the same. I don't know that I have yet seen a pre-WW2 pulp in person with an overhang that if CGC standards were applied would be a 9.2 because of some tiny imperfections in the overhang.

There is a curve, for sure, in the way golden age comics are CGC graded versus silver age versus bronze, etc. Maybe this curve is not supposed to be there in theory but it is definitely there in practice. I think if pulps end up with 3rd party grading there will be a bit of a curve again but I do not believe it will be even as significant as it is between golden age comics and more modern comics. 

If anyone sees anything they feel is a noticeable mis-grade please feel free to email the link of the book to me at RickA@HA.com and we will review it.(thumbsu

If overhangs were the case then the two most egregiously misgraded -- IMO -- books can't be justified in this manner since they're Weird Tales without any overhang.  It looks like the Conan book was regraded from a VF- to a FN, which is closer to what it actually looks like, so that's progress (although the paper catalog still has it as a VF-).  But the batgirl issue, with a bug chew or abrasion at the corner, a 1/4 inch tear with creasing at the free edge, and a 1.5 inch color breaking crease isn't a VF.  No overhang. 

Also, it looks like a LOT of books in the Pulp auction are trimmed, and that is only mentioned in the body of the description, not in the grade.  That's not cool.  That should either be factored into the grade, or the grade should be listed as an 'apparent' grade.    

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It is about time pulps had their day in HA auctions, and I hope this will not be the last, some amazing issues...if this is a regular occurrence you are gonna look back at this auction and say I should of bought or bought more...this is a real defining moment for pulps collecting to expand world wide...

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Will have to see how they do.  Heritage has had other pulp collections and higher grade examples, but they didn’t have it under a separate pulp auction, that could make the difference.

However, I don’t think one single auction at Heritage will expand it worldwide, but repeated auctions certainly might.

Dwight

Edited by detective35
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I was the loser on the June 1938 WEIRD TALES. It was a pretty example of Classic. GOD BLESS....

-jimbo(a friend of jesus)(thumbsu

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36 minutes ago, jimjum12 said:

I was the loser on the June 1938 WEIRD TALES. It was a pretty example of Classic. GOD BLESS....

-jimbo(a friend of jesus)(thumbsu

Ah, sorry you missed it.  It looks like a lovely copy!

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3 minutes ago, RedFury said:

Ah, sorry you missed it.  It looks like a lovely copy!

Started "Lovecraft Country" on HBO and couldn't  help but notice the minty mint copy of The Outsider and Other Stories" at the beginning of the series. GOD BLESS....

-jimbo(a friend of jesus)(thumbsu

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1 minute ago, jimjum12 said:

Started "Lovecraft Country" on HBO and couldn't  help but notice the minty mint copy of The Outsider and Other Stories" at the beginning of the series. GOD BLESS....

-jimbo(a friend of jesus)(thumbsu

I'm sure it was a facsimile.  Also, he big "Arkham House" logo they had on the spine is not on the original.  But is *was* super cool to see that book represented in the show!

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2 hours ago, RedFury said:

I'm sure it was a facsimile.  Also, he big "Arkham House" logo they had on the spine is not on the original.  But is *was* super cool to see that book represented in the show!

I really do need to sit down and watch that...

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I've been waiting with bated breath for reactions now that the Heritage Auction is over....so I'll jump start things a bit! I've included some screen shots of final prices I was tracking.

Two caveats: 1) My bias is towards the older sci fi pulps (Astounding/Amazing/etc from 20s-40s), so not sure if these rang true across all genres, and 2) I'm much newer to pulp collecting than most boardies, so these observations only cover what I've seen in the last ~6 months...and I would love to hear from folks who've seen the ups and downs of pulps over the years!

1) Prices were....high :golfclap:! The FN Buck Rogers pulp went for $4,320 with buyer premium which is the most I've ever seen. Same goes for many other issues. Not listed below, but one issue went for less than I expected: the August 1939 Astounding with Robert Heinlein's first story - final price with BP was $132 for FN- 5.5. Thought that would get closer to $200

2) Across the board, these were nicer examples than 99% of what I've seen over the last 6 months. eBay auctions are usually in the Fair to VG- range (despite many claims of VG+ to FN- ), and HA were solidly in the VG+ to FN. I know there's a premium for the nicer issues, but curious if others think these higher prices will trickle down at all. I've already seen one eBay listing pop up referencing the HA auction for the Buck Rogers pulp.

3) @Bookery made a great comment in an older thread that it's hard to gauge overall trends from these auctions because a high price might just be "Bob and Joe both wanted that issue to complete a set and bid it up". Many auctions had 10+ bidders, but none I tracked had more than 15....so agreed it's hard to gauge what this means for prices of lower grade issues. Lots of trackers though, so people (like me) are interested! My 2 cents - I'm guessing there will be a short term pop in low grade listings from speculators at sky high prices...and then it will die down in a few months as they sit unsold...unless HA has another Pulp auction up their sleeves.

4) I might need to find a new hobby if these prices are indicative of a new trend :S I got into pulp collecting because I couldn't afford a first edition of Asimov's Foundation novel...and that opened a can of worms of pulp collecting which has only accelerated over the past few months....It's been a really fun ride, but the calculus changes when the chances of snagging a rare pulp at a reasonable price disappear with speculation. Unlike Comics, there isn't a continuing supply of Pulps to satiate future speculators, so price increases would seem somewhat inevitable over time.

Agree/Disagree/Wise words from folks who have gone through this before? Thanks!

 

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1808616219_HAAuction2.thumb.JPG.32d50de3babfca9913aac32fea8c2067.JPG

Edited by asimovpulps
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I followed it until a bit after midnight, when everything faded to black for me. I noticed that many of the Weird Tales I had on my eBay watch list had been removed from sale by this morning. Many issues of that title enjoyed robust activity in the auction. There were some bargains, but most of the better material seemed to be strong. This was the first Pulp auction I ever watched and couldn't help picking up a few of them. None of my tracked lots were in my budget this time except for maybe a couple of the Spicy's. I had no idea the first "Call of Cthulu" was so sought after. I guess that one will just have to remain a fantasy for me. I ended up with one Weird Tales, a few ASTONISHING's, a 3 issue lot of Black Book Detective, and a Famous Fantastic Mysteries. I think Joe will likely be happy with the results as a whole. GOD BLESS....

-jimbo(a friend of jesus)(thumbsu

Edited by jimjum12
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