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Graded Lobby Card

jayn_jjayn_j Member, Singin Dancing Fool, Lobby Master Posts: 628 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
As I posted here, I recently won the Flying Down to Rio Fred/Ginger lobby card.  It probably will be a couple of weeks before I see it as Heritage is much better at taking money than it is in shipping.  I guess Bruce and Phil have spoiled me.

Here's the deal though.  The card has been slabbed and graded.  It was graded at 6.0.  IMO, that's a 'don't sweat much' type grading.  The poster has some slight aging on the borders, 3 pinholes on the top and a 1' tear on the right side.

I am thinking the 6.0 grading is too harsh and actually hurts value of the poster.  I am wondering about breaking the seal and sending the card out for minor restoration to fix the tear and fill the pinholes.

Opinions?



While we are at it, what are your opinions on slabbing lobbies in general?  I personally see little value unless it is for authentication of something that is often counterfitted.
- Jay -
Curmudgeon in training 

Comments

  • DavidDavid Member Posts: 10,230 admin
    I guess you sort of answered the questions yourself.  B) If you see little value in slabbed collectibles then breaking it open to restore shouldn't worry you.

    I don't know much about slabbed items, albeit I am aware of them, but they're not for me.
    David
  • EisenhowerEisenhower Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 4,038 admin
    I used to collect coins; buffalo nickels, Morgan silver dollars, liberty dimes. I think it's more worthwhile for that type of a product, which sees more increase in value among the general collecting populace. But, i'm relatively new to poster collecting so not sure.

    Paper seems to have more forgiveable "defects" which will still allow a poster to sell for a higher price just because it's rare.  A somewhat rare silver dollar which is graded Proof 67 instead of Proof 64 can command a much higher resale price if it's slabbed by a company. 

    I don't think id ever by or have a lobby slabbed. I want to at least hold it once...

  • CharlieCharlie Member, Administrator, Moderator, Game Master Posts: 6,298 admin
    I think slabbing is ok if you never plan to hang or touch the item again.  It will be what it was when slabbed - a reference point in the items condition history.  If you want to take it out and restore it, the more power to you.  But if you slabbed it again it may be a higher grade or come out with a restoration grade, if that exists...
    That second mouse in the bowl of cream we call life...
  • SvenSven Member Posts: 2,093 ✭✭✭✭ Three-Sheeter
    Hi Jay i think its ok to open and restore but before doing so careful inspect to see if any restoration done already (shinne bright light from rear and on front from various angles)
  • jayn_jjayn_j Member, Singin Dancing Fool, Lobby Master Posts: 628 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    Sven said:
    Hi Jay i think its ok to open and restore but before doing so careful inspect to see if any restoration done already (shinne bright light from rear and on front from various angles)
    great idea.  Will do so.
    - Jay -
    Curmudgeon in training 
  • PanchoPancho Member Posts: 583 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    I play a little bit in the shallow end of CGC collecting for comics, so I have a little understanding of value vs grade.

    Starting at 0.5 up to 9.0, the grades jump in 0.5 increments, with 9.0 - 10.0 moving in 0.2s. For comics, the difference in $$ between say a 5.0 and a 7.0 can be marked and collectors certainly appreciate the impartial grading of CGC, allowing them to know that a comic they're buying from 1,000s of miles away is of a certain quality and is genuine.

    A standard CGC grading is called a 'universal' grading and is recorded on a blue label. They also have a 'restored' grading which is a purple label and gives a score in regards to both the amount of restoration (1 - 5) as well as the quality (A, B or C). A1 means slight restoration of excellent quality and C5 means extensive work of poor quality.

    Even an A1 restoration grade will impact the value of what's been slabbed. Most - and I stress most - collectors would take a lower universal grade over a higher restored grade. There is plenty of sales evidence to support this. 

    So there's a high likelihood that this lobby card as a universal 6.0 would be worth more 'as is' than if if was restored to a 7.5 (for example).

    If you're slabbing for protection and presentation then I'd say that's already been done. If you're looking for a higher grade to increase the card's worth then I'd advise caution as a purple restored label could hurt the card's value more than the current pinholes! :-)
  • jayn_jjayn_j Member, Singin Dancing Fool, Lobby Master Posts: 628 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    Thanks for the input.  I really do appreciate it, and am trying to understand.

    I looked at Bruces and HA for graded and slabbed lobbies.  I then went and looked at lobbies of that title.  I can't seem to find a correlation between slabbing and increased value.

    A good example is The Beatles Let it Be.  There are both slabbed and raw copies with similar dates.  
    Card #3 - Slabbed condition 9.8 from CGC and VG to Fine from Bruce sold for $107 in 2013.  Raw VG-Fine sold for $141 in 2017 and Good condition for $80 in 2014.  I got similar results for other titles.

    I get that slabbing is widely accepted in the comic world, although I fail to understand how a process that makes the comic unusable is a feature.  I agree that in the comic world, slabbing increases value.

    Just not seeing it in lobbies.  The hobby seems to have rejected it.  If I do decide to open the card and have it restored, I don't see a lot of value in having it reslabbed.  Also, I probably need to state that I have never sold any poster I own, so doing this would be for my personal aesthetics and not to increase value.
    - Jay -
    Curmudgeon in training 
  • BruceBruce Member, Captain Movie Poster Posts: 860 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    The biggest problem is that the "slabbers" have almost no clue as to how to grade movie paper (and they inject comic book grading values onto movie paper). This is especially true with slabbed stills, where the grades seem to come out of thin air sometimes.

    I would wonder about restoration, so I would take it out of its coffin and look for that. And then store it as you do all your other great lobbies.
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  • jayn_jjayn_j Member, Singin Dancing Fool, Lobby Master Posts: 628 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    Thanks, Bruce.  Solid advice.
    - Jay -
    Curmudgeon in training 
  • PanchoPancho Member Posts: 583 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    Bruce said:
    The biggest problem is that the "slabbers" have almost no clue as to how to grade movie paper (and they inject comic book grading values onto movie paper). This is especially true with slabbed stills, where the grades seem to come out of thin air sometimes.

    I would wonder about restoration, so I would take it out of its coffin and look for that. And then store it as you do all your other great lobbies.

    I'd like to politely challenge you on this point Bruce. CGC grading has been around for nearly 20 years and have developed a pretty robust system with 25 possible scores on their rating scale. I understand that we've yet to find a universal system for movie paper, but I think suggesting CGC graders have 'almost no clue' is a bit rough. FWIW I believe Grey Smith spent some time with the CGC team.

    I don't have access to their grading criteria, but I imagine it's similar to the one they use for comics, which includes things like: how big a tear is, how big a crease is, does the crease have colour breakage, are the corners sharp or rounded etc.
  • BruceBruce Member, Captain Movie Poster Posts: 860 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    Sorry Pancho, but I have been consigned some graded lobbies and a lot of graded stills, and they were WAY off a lot of the time.

    But then again, I am not impressed with much of the grading of unslabbed lobbies or posters at most auctions. Many seem to "accidentally" miss a lot of defects. But I am still learning myself. Maybe when I get to my two millionth auction I will finally get the hang of it.

    But you should do what makes you happy, and buy from those auctions where you like their grading. Each man (and woman) has to decide for themselves.
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    See all of our current auctions in one gallery here: http://www.emovieposter.com/agallery/all.html
  • PanchoPancho Member Posts: 583 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    But what reference point are you using? If a slabbed still is given a 6.5 are you comparing it to your grade of VG to Fine? Or just VG? Or just Good?
  • BruceBruce Member, Captain Movie Poster Posts: 860 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    edited November 2017
    No, I am talking about inconsistencies from item to item.  I found slabbed stills in "fine" that were in better condition than ones that were in "near mint". Restoration that was missed. Stuff like that.

    But if you are a believer, then by all means you should buy as many as you can, because, except on certain exact items at one auction house, it seems that the only people making money slabbing lobby cards and stills are the grading companies, and if you buy a bunch of them without paying a premium for the slabs, and then they "catch on", you will make a bundle.
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  • RichRich Member, Dealer, Tea Lady Posts: 237 ✭✭ One-Sheeter
    Pancho said:


    So there's a high likelihood that this lobby card as a universal 6.0 would be worth more 'as is' than if if was restored to a 7.5 (for example).
    Pancho is shooting .500 with me. I agree this time. I would not remove it from the slab.

    here's the deal, as Pancho states, restoring the item will not benefit the value to the positive and down the road will most likely have a negative impact.

    Of course, I also will say that linenbacking a poster does not add to it's value, especially when it's in decent condition to begin with and who gives a crap about folds, they don't bother me.

    30-35 years ago, comic book restoration was viewed as a plus and I had it done on books I sold. At some point however, it became obvious that it was not a benefit and within a couple years I had stopped doing it. I seriously do not believe it is a benefit to the movie poster hobby in the long run either, and that raw, unbacked posters in lesser grades will be worth more than nice looking linenbacked posters.

    Hey, my House of Dracula 1sh has a small piece missing about the size of a piece of tape that was removed (maybe 1" in length). So what! I don't care. My Drunk Driving 1sh has some crossfold paper missing. So what!!!! I've also been actively replacing any backed posters in my collection and at this point, less than 1% of my total posters (in my collection) are backed

    Rich Halegua
    Visit MoviePosterBid
  • jayn_jjayn_j Member, Singin Dancing Fool, Lobby Master Posts: 628 ✭✭✭ Daybiller
    One point Rich is that this will be the only slabbed card I own.  I will not be able to display it in the same way I display similar cards, so unless I free it, it will sit in a box.
    - Jay -
    Curmudgeon in training 
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