Prepare Comics for Long Term Storage
Your comic books are not just collectibles, but they are treasured items that are part of your memories. Thankfully, you can keep them in excellent shape for years because preparing comics for storage is easy. Whether you plan to store them for casual use or grade them as a collector's item, the methods are straightforward.
Overall, protecting your comic books does not cost a lot of money, but your proactive steps can maintain the value of rare editions with high market values. The three main offenders to comic books are extreme temperatures, humidity, and sunlight. When you take measures to protect your books from these elements, you can enjoy your collectibles for many years.
This quick guide will show you how to prepare your comics for long term storage at home or at a storage facility.
Caring for Loose Comics
Loose comics are comics that you casually enjoy and want to recall at any time but keep in good condition in storage. They aren’t planned to be sold. These quick tips will help you store them correctly so that they can stay in pristine condition.
Put Your Comics in Boxes
Comic books are usually stored in either long or short boxes. This enables the comics to be placed upright. Cardboard boxes work fine, but you can also upgrade to collector-grade soft plastic containers, which are known to be more durable.
Plastic containers are also waterproof, which can be beneficial to you if you are worried about water damage such as a leak in an attic or a flood in the basement.
The comic books do not weigh a lot, do not stack too many boxes on top of each other. The maximum number of stacked boxes you should have is 5. Also, do not place boxes that contain heavy contents on top of a comic book box. The smallest mishap can result in crushed pages.
Use Cardboard Backings
Comic books need to be kept crease-free to be considered viable for sale or collection. This is why collectors use cardboard backing to keep the books straight and prevent any bending. Before you commit to a backing, as for acid-free boards. Sometimes you may see people trying to get away with using any type of cardboard, but if it contains acid it can corrode the pages slowly over time.
Keep Comics in Plastic Sleeves
The only do comics need to be kept straight, but they also need to be kept safe from moisture damage. Comics must be sealed with some type of waterproof barrier after they are boarded to make sure that they don't succumb to any warping or deterioration from pest and water damage. Otherwise, you may find your comics with bubbled areas or with some pages damaged by silverfish and bookworms. For the best results, get a bag that is made of polyethylene, polypropylene, or Mylar. The size of the bag also matters.
Older comics better made before 1950 favor size 7 bags (3/4” x 10 1/2”). These are often called “golden age” comics and are rare and valued highly. Silver age comics which were made between the 1950s and 1980s also do the best in size 7 bags (1/8" x 10 1/2"). Anything made after the 1980s uses size 6 bags (7/8" x 10 1/2"). If you're ever in doubt about what size bag to use, simply bring the comic that you want to protect with you to your local comic store and ask what products they have that can help.
Caring for Graded Comics
Graded comics have been professionally assessed and given a firm value for their rarity and market value. These comics need to be kept in hard plastic holders, which cost more than bag and board. However, this investment is worth it to prevent any damage or creasing of the pages. Hard plastic holders also allow you to display the graded comic with pride. Here's how to make storing graded comics easy and convenient.
Paying the Right Company to Grade Your Comic
Rare comic books that you plan to sell should be professionally protected. By spending a few dollars per comic, you can have a Certified Guaranty Company grade your comic and then seal it in a hard plastic clam case.
This case, also known as a ‘slab’, has a barcode to identify the comic and hologram sticker on the seal to indicate any tampering. If the sticker is broken, then the grading is voided. This extra investment does not just secure your comic’s price, but it also prevents any buyer’s fraud.
For All Comics, Use a Temperature-Controlled Storage Area
For both graded or non-graded comics, a climate-controlled storage area is vital for your comics upkeep. You do a lot of good by protecting your book from moisture with a bag or plastic case, but a temperature-controlled storage unit will prevent your paper from expanding and contracting due to extreme hot and cold temperatures.
An indoor storage unit can also keep the sun away from your books so that they don't fade over time. This is especially important for vintage comics or anything delicate.
We're Your Storage Solution!
Storage Rentals of America is your convenient self-storage solution. So come into our office or give our storage experts a call at 1-800-457-5678. Our call center is available 7 days a week and can help determine which storage unit size best fits your storage needs.