Recent Pre-Code Purchases
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rarely see the Star (Startling Terror Tales, Terrors of the Jungle, Blue Bolt, etc.) in high grade. And when I do, they are going for a premium.

 

There are some tough to find Cole Star books... Shocking Mystery Cases #51 comes to mind

 

Actually, there are a few graded copies of Shocking Mystery Cases #51. I have the Bethlehem copy but it is ungraded as of yet. Front cover is near perfect, but back cover has 2" crease. Once I get power, I can try to post.

 

Yes, 20% over guide probably won't cut it for CGC 8.0's. I was pointing out that while these books (L.B. Cole cover) might have less interested now than 10 years ago (even Metro said this in their June Market Report), maybe the interested has wanned because "OUT OF SIGHT, OUT OF MIND". In other words, why have interest in something that can't be obtained.

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Wow... that SMC #51 must be amazing... I'd love to see it. I don't want to go so far to say that it's scarce, but it seems to be a little tougher to find, maybe because they reside in collections (mine is a beater place-holder for now). I think the same can be said for Blue Bolt #115... I doubt this book was printed in any less quantity, but it's harder to find because people hold onto them.

Edited by paull
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Wow.... the condition of that book is ridiculous! Back cover crease or not, a Star book in that kind of condition is very rare. The books are usually not a problem to locate in the G to VG range, but anything VF or over is very, very tough.

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The books are usually not a problem to locate in the G to VG range, but anything VF or over is very, very tough.

 

You said a mouthful, pal!

 

 

I KNOW!!!

 

Heritage hasn't had a Star L.B. Cole cover book in CGC 8.0 (or higher) in any auction in over six months. 893frustrated.gif

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I hope that you're not trying hard to put together a collection of 8.0 Star Coles... you're not only going to go broke, but crazy also!

 

Please tell me that no one here won this auction:

 

http://cgi.liveauctions.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=2266918825&rd=1&sspagename=STRK%3AMEDW%3AIT

 

This qualifies as one of the most ridiculous auctions of the year.

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The ending price on that Tomb of Terror 15 is steep, but I don't see it as ridiculous - at least not compared to the prices on alot of high grade slabbed Silver, Bronze and Modern books.

 

I think I've seen VG copies sell for around $200 on Ebay a couple of times - after Black Cat #50, it's probably the most wanted Harvey horror book.

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Here's another recent purchase of mine... Startling Terror Tales #10 (1954) with a Cole cover, of course. I'd grade this at about a 7.0 which is, as we have discussed here, a pretty high grade for a Star book. There's nothing better than Cole's primary colors on a black background (as in Mask #1, Mask #2, Blue Bolt #111, etc.)

 

594553-stt10.jpg

594553-stt10.jpg.451d5aef134fdfeceb547cafe68fa906.jpg

Edited by paull
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Two things would scare me away from that auction.... the too casual grading done by the seller, and the fact that there are a bunch of Harvey file copies out there. $900 is just ridiculous, as far as I'm concerned. There are countless books that I would rather have at that price.

 

I don't like to look at a book in isolation to determine its value. I compare a book to other books in its price range... do I want this one as much or less? In this case, definitely less... Another example is Horrific #3. That book doesn't even have one of the better Don Heck covers, as far as I'm concerned. Way overpriced, mainly because people are holding them in their collections and they aren't on the market.

 

Edited by paull
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While I wouldn't pay $900 for that Tomb of Terror, I could see going as high as $600 or $700 as a reasonable bid. It is one of the classic covers after all. Paull, I'm not quite sure why you see a book as less "scarce" simply because people are holding onto the books in their collections as opposed to number of existing copies, etc. I understand the difference but either way the books are less available to YOU (this to me seems to be the key point), and that equates scarcity, be it real or "imagined." Thus prices naturally go higher, as they should for books that are "keepers" to collectors.

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I think I feel that way because in a changing market, those issues will suddenly be available. For instance, let's say there's a sudden increase in prices and interest in pre-code horror like there was in circa 1995. Copies of Horrific #3, TOT #15, Black Cat Mystery #50 and others will suddenly see the light of day. I definitely think that there is a difference between true scarcity and hoarding.

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Thanks! Sorry for the bad photo... the book is very flat, clean and glossy, with no tears or creases, just a little edge and corner wear. I need to get a cheapo scanner if only to scan books to show other people. I got this book for a very good price from a guy I had bought from previously... far below guide. I guess that makes up for the over-guide prices I've paid for other books recently smile.gif

Edited by paull
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The only time classic cover horror books come out of the woodwork in greater numbers is when higher prices make selling an attractive option. Even with the number of file copies out there, I don't think there are enough copies of books like ToT 15 and Black Cat 50 to satisfy demand. These are "key" books for pre-code horror collectors and even at 2 or 3 times guide are still pretty cheap compared to alot of classic cover superhero books from the GA. If not for all the file copies, I think those two books would sell for even more in high grade.

 

As for Horrific 3, it is recognized by many collectors as one of the classic covers of the genre. We all have favorites which haven't reached icon status, and every collector can probably think of a couple "classic" covers which don't excite them, but Horrific 3 has been a high demand pre-code book for years.

 

For many pre-code titles, I've long felt that the most overvalued issues have been first issues - an influence of super-hero titles where that has a real signifigance. I think for most pre-code horror collectors, the issue number is far less importance than the cover and/or interior art and story.

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I agree completely about issue numbers. A #1 has little significance in pre-code horror, unless it's Eerie #1 or Adventures Into The Unknown #1 or something similar.

 

Also agree that there aren't enough copies to satisfy the demand for TOT #15 and BCM #50. But give me $900 to spend on a pre-code book, and TOT #15 wouldn't even get consideration from me.

 

Regarding Horrific #3, I consider it seriously overrated. The cover is pretty bland... especially in comparison to some of Heck's other great covers, including Horrific #7. Somehow Horrific #3 got a reputation as being a classic pre-code book in light of so many other neglected classics.

Edited by paull
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