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Grading Help NeededQuestions

How Do You Identify a 9.8?2343

Collector Drogio private msg quote post Address this user
I've sent about 10 comics in to CGC and CBCS now...the highest grade I've received one 9.6 with no notes to help me determine why a 9.8 wasn't achieved. All others were 9.4's and below...

Typically I'm finding that my opinion on the higher grade moderns is about 1 or 2 "grading levels" lower than the professionals (I guess that's why they're professionals). For example...I send in thinking 9.6...and get a 9.4 to 9.2. I'm stunned when I get 9.0's with similar notes to 9.4s. There's obviously a very fine line and I'm having trouble seeing it.

As disappointing as this is, I understand I'm paying third parties for their honest opinion and I'm good with that...and I'm learning, reading the notes and examining the comic.

Long story short...anyone use techniques (beyond your natural awesome 20-20 vision and rotating the comic in natural lighting) to spot a 9.8/9.6 versus, say, a 9.4/9.2 that's been highly successful/rewarding?
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Collector DertyComix private msg quote post Address this user
Ive started using a jewlers loupes to help me assess the books I am turning in.
Post 2 IP   flag post
Collector Drogio private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by DertyComix
Ive started using a jewlers loupes to help me assess the books I am turning in.


I've thought of that...I'm thinking that has to be a staple in this business. Curious what black lights catch too (let's keep it professional, btw) if anyone has experience with them.
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COLLECTOR drchaos private msg quote post Address this user
I would think that most 9.6s and 9.4s are victims of either slight damage to the interior corners, soft outside corners, or pressable defects (finger bends, non-color breaking spine ticks, creases, etc).

It really does not take all that much to turn a fragile 9.8 comic book into a 9.4 comic book.
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Collector dpiercy private msg quote post Address this user
It helps to be checking the spine and corners under bright halogen lights and at angles. Front and back covers.
Post 5 IP   flag post
Collector DertyComix private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by drchaos
I would think that most 9.6s and 9.4s are victims of either slight damage to the interior corners, soft outside corners, or pressable defects (finger bends, non-color breaking spine ticks, creases, etc).

It really does not take all that much to turn a fragile 9.8 comic book into a 9.4 comic book.


I agree with this. Most of my modern books that came back under a 9.8 had spine ticks that brought it down under that 9.8. The corners are always an issue.
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COLLECTOR JLS_Comics private msg quote post Address this user
3D imaging analysis with a bat computer
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Collector DertyComix private msg quote post Address this user
Can't afford the bat computer, so I decided to use my hook up at my local P.D. forensic team and get my C.S.I. on.
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COLLECTOR shrewbeer private msg quote post Address this user
Best way to identify a 98 is to notice zero defects. If I think a book is perfect itll prob come back a 98 lol.

The tiniest spine stress is allowed once, but usually you cant see that without magnification. Some small corner blunting is allowed as well, Steve chimed in about that Here

My January discount submission included 10 books at 9.8 grade screen. I thought 8 of them were sure things, the other 4 borderline. I got 5 back 9.8. I'm at 50% success rate, quite shitty lol. (supposed to be delivered today!)
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Collector comicsforme private msg quote post Address this user
I sent 7 for 9.8 and got 9.8 and at the same time sent 5 9.6 to 9.8 at the same time and got even lest and all graded at the same time. I think a lot depends on the grader. Do you think the grader is the same person sealing it too? I have been getting some comic labels mix ed up and having to send back because of that.
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Collector DocBrown private msg quote post Address this user
The best way to learn how to grade is to have multiple examples of already graded books, in various grades, and examine them every way you can.

Get the notes, match the notes with the flaws, and see what they saw.

Crack the books open and examine them.

And remember to get multiple copies of the same grade (not necessarily the same book, but that would be good, too), because grading is subjective, and a single book...or even just two...could easily give you an inaccurate impression of what that grade is.

And the jeweler's loupe is your friend.
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Collector TruckJohnson private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by shrewbeer
Best way to identify a 98 is to notice zero defects. If I think a book is perfect itll prob come back a 98 lol.

The tiniest spine stress is allowed once, but usually you cant see that without magnification. Some small corner blunting is allowed as well, Steve chimed in about that Here

My January discount submission included 10 books at 9.8 grade screen. I thought 8 of them were sure things, the other 4 borderline. I got 5 back 9.8. I'm at 50% success rate, quite shitty lol. (supposed to be delivered today!)


A.500 batting average in baseball would make you by far the greatest hitter in major league history. Not too shabby.
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Collector esaravo private msg quote post Address this user
When you hold the book just right under a bright light, it should create an effect similar to the one shown in the link below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjYciW9sVCE
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Collector RyanHicks private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drogio
I've sent about 10 comics in to CGC and CBCS now...the highest grade I've received one 9.6 with no notes to help me determine why a 9.8 wasn't achieved. All others were 9.4's and below...


CBCS provides free graders notes and these notes are fairly thorough, especially on 9.6 books (they even provide notes on 9.8's). If you have multiple 9.6 CBCS books, you should be able to see in the notes what prevented it from 9.8 to help you look out for that on future books. This is not the case for CGC, most of the time, they provide no notes at all on anything above 9.4.
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Collector DocBrown private msg quote post Address this user
Notes are a double-edged sword. If a book is a 9.8, but has notes, potential buyers may think "this book is overgraded", especially if they rely on notes as a crutch.

The most effective notes are quantitative...that is, they have specific counts and measures, like "two 1/16" CB spine stress tics", rather than qualitative, like "slight bend lower right corner."

What does "slight" mean...?
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Collector RyanHicks private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by DocBrown
The most effective notes are quantitative...that is, they have specific counts and measures, like "two 1/16" CB spine stress tics", rather than qualitative, like "slight bend lower right corner."

What does "slight" mean...?


Agreed; however, OP is having issues identifying 9.8's in a sea of 9.6's. At that grade level, he is likely not going to be getting quantitative notes.
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Collector DocBrown private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanHicks
Quote:
Originally Posted by DocBrown
The most effective notes are quantitative...that is, they have specific counts and measures, like "two 1/16" CB spine stress tics", rather than qualitative, like "slight bend lower right corner."

What does "slight" mean...?


Agreed; however, OP is having issues identifying 9.8's in a sea of 9.6's. At that grade level, he is likely not going to be getting quantitative notes.


Granted, but I haven't seen many quantitative notes at ANY grade level.

There's been much discussion (and much misunderstanding) on this board and others about qualitative notes, like "slight" this, and "small" that, and "several" these...and people have gotten the inaccurate impression that books are overgraded, because the book "sounds" worse than it is.

What does "slight", "small", and "several" mean to the graders? We don't know.

Add to that the erroneous method of grading that says "such and such a grade can have X defects", without defining the degree of those defects, and you compound the misunderstanding.

Example:

"This book only has two defects, so it must be a 9.8." (This thought has been expressed along these lines here on this board.)

But what if those two defects are a 2" color breaking crease, and a 1/2" tear on the right edge?

That's just "2 defects." But those 2 defects are severe defects, and not acceptable in 8.0, much less 9.8, even if the book is otherwise flawless. That's why the "number of defects" method of grading doesn't work (and why grading is, and needs to be, subjective. The grade of a book is more than the sum of its defects.)
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COLLECTOR Towmater private msg quote post Address this user
My 9.8 verified McFarlane signed book with a sketch has the following notes on it:

- tiny wear top & bottom spine
- light spine wear

That's it.
I was pretty happy when that came back to me 2 years ago from CBCS. It was a blank cover bought at a convention before it was signed and doodled on by McFarlane.
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Collector Logan510 private msg quote post Address this user
A lot of it also depends on what you're looking for when examining books.

Looking for what you feel is a flat out 9.8 is different than looking for books that are 9.8 canditates, which are not 9.8's as is, but can potentially be pressed into 9.8.
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Collector TruckJohnson private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by DocBrown
Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanHicks
Quote:
Originally Posted by DocBrown
The most effective notes are quantitative...that is, they have specific counts and measures, like "two 1/16" CB spine stress tics", rather than qualitative, like "slight bend lower right corner."

What does "slight" mean...?


Agreed; however, OP is having issues identifying 9.8's in a sea of 9.6's. At that grade level, he is likely not going to be getting quantitative notes.


Granted, but I haven't seen many quantitative notes at ANY grade level.

There's been much discussion (and much misunderstanding) on this board and others about qualitative notes, like "slight" this, and "small" that, and "several" these...and people have gotten the inaccurate impression that books are overgraded, because the book "sounds" worse than it is.

What does "slight", "small", and "several" mean to the graders? We don't know.

Add to that the erroneous method of grading that says "such and such a grade can have X defects", without defining the degree of those defects, and you compound the misunderstanding.

Example:

"This book only has two defects, so it must be a 9.8." (This thought has been expressed along these lines here on this board.)

But what if those two defects are a 2" color breaking crease, and a 1/2" tear on the right edge?

That's just "2 defects." But those 2 defects are severe defects, and not acceptable in 8.0, much less 9.8, even if the book is otherwise flawless. That's why the "number of defects" method of grading doesn't work (and why grading is, and needs to be, subjective. The grade of a book is more than the sum of its defects.)


Exactly! You need context. The notes are pretty much useless with out real numbers/details attached to all of the specific defects of a book. "Spine stress" and "corner crease" could be applied to any book in the higher grades. You need more details than that to know exactly where the book fell short. It's not just the number of defects you have, it's the severity of those defects. If I have an otherwise pristine Batman Adventures #12 with a 1 inch corner crease that breaks color -- guess what -- that ONE defect will prevent it from getting a 9.8. And I'm willing to bet the notes on that book simply say "corner crease breaks color."
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COLLECTOR shrewbeer private msg quote post Address this user
There are some very good answers from Steve on the specific notes givenHERE as well. CBCS is very specific, especially in higher grades.
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Collector DocBrown private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by shrewbeer
There are some very good answers from Steve on the specific notes givenHERE as well. CBCS is very specific, especially in higher grades.


Those aren't very specific. He's using qualitative terms like "very tiny" and "tiny" and "large" and "very large", etc.

What do those words mean?

What's "very tiny" to you may be glaring to me.

But everybody understands things like "...1/16" spine crease front cover, breaks color."

There's no ambiguity there (though I prefer "tic" or "tick", but that's a minor quibble.) Everyone can take out a tape measure and have a precise idea how big that tick is.
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COLLECTOR shrewbeer private msg quote post Address this user
It is a thread worth mentioning given the topic and the company forum we're on. Happy to hear you enjoyed it. 👍🏻
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Collector DocBrown private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by shrewbeer
It is a thread worth mentioning given the topic and the company forum we're on. Happy to hear you enjoyed it. 👍🏻


If you make a claim, expect the claim to be scrutinized. That goes for everyone. Knowledge is the goal, right...?
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Collector Logan510 private msg quote post Address this user
While it would be nice to get notes that were more specific, I'm not sure that's realistic given the time constraints. That's my best, educated guess.
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Collector TruckJohnson private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by Logan510
While it would be nice to get notes that were more specific, I'm not sure that's realistic given the time constraints. That's my best, educated guess.


Are the notes any better "across the street?" I know they charge for them over there. I appreciate the free "bullet points", but I'd be willing to pay the $5 (anywhere) if could get REALLY DETAILED notes about why my book got the grade it got.
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Collector Logan510 private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by TruckJohnson
Quote:
Originally Posted by Logan510
While it would be nice to get notes that were more specific, I'm not sure that's realistic given the time constraints. That's my best, educated guess.


Are the notes any better "across the street?" I know they charge for them over there. I'd be willing to pay the $5 (anywhere) if could get REALLY DETAILED notes about why my book got the grade it got.


From my experience no, they are not. I've only bought graders notes a few times, when it might have been worth CPR'ng it to try to get the bump from 9.6 to 9.8.

Here is an example for an Avengers #144 I sent in to CGC in 2015 that came back a 9.6:

"Spine stress lines"
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Collector DocBrown private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by TruckJohnson

Are the notes any better "across the street?" I know they charge for them over there. I'd be willing to pay the $5 (anywhere) if could get REALLY DETAILED notes about why my book got the grade it got.


It needn't be any additional work or effort. They don't need to have a tape measure on hand. With experience, one learns what is 1/16", 1/8", 1/4", etc.

It takes as much effort to record "...2.5" crease" as it does "...large crease."

But the benefit to the customers is out of this world, because now we're dealing with precision.
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Collector Drogio private msg quote post Address this user
Quote:
Originally Posted by esaravo
When you hold the book just right under a bright light, it should create an effect similar to the one shown in the link below.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fjYciW9sVCE


sweet...I will look for that.
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Collector DocBrown private msg quote post Address this user
"You said it was a 3" crease, and it's really 3 1/4"!! I want my money back!!"

Granted, and those crazies will come, because they're already out there.

However...that's easily dealt with in the terms and conditions disclaimer, with an addendum that says "all measurements are approximations, made to the best of our ability."

...which covers them, but still allows for much greater precision.

It's a lot better than "large crease", which could be, what...1"? 2"? 4"? 6"?
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