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Comic books (Comics)/Comic Strip lead printing plate-Popeye


bob horn wrote at 2009-06-30 22:27:42
Printing plates that are complete pages from comic books; especially before they were curved' are, at present worth 100 to 800 dollars depending on subject matter and condition. I arrive at this value because of the number of plates that I have sold at big conventions like San Diego. They can be framed with the actual page or with a copy of the actual page or can be inked and printed and then cleaned off. If these plates were properly advertised and enough people knew about them, their worth would be many times more. There is only one plate for each page and that makes them rarer than original art because so much more original art survived. Printing plates were almost always melted down and the metal reused.Occasionally, someone would sneak plates out of the factory; otherwise, few would have survived.

Newspaper strips are much smaller and usually tinnier as well and are not worth as much...yet.I personally believe that printing plates will be a huge collectible one day.

bob horn wrote at 2012-02-25 23:10:57
the best way to display printing plates, which have the image in reverse, is to get a copy of the plate and frame them together. The copy will, of course, be what you see on the printed page. Copioes can be made by inking the original plate or by ccreating a copy from the book itself (or cutting out the page) or by finding the original image on the net or in a library, and making a photocopy. Without promoting the plates, I sold these years ago at the San diego Comic Book show for prices ranging from $200 to $1,000. I displayed the plates framed kalong with its normal image. It was a show-stopper. I heard as lot of "O Wows". I feel that these plates should be worth much more but probably need to be promoted. Super-hero plates sold best even though they were most expensive.  

bob horn wrote at 2013-09-30 22:51:20
Recently on a Pawn Stars episode, a customer came in to have an old printing plate evaluated. He was told that although the item was interesting and rare it would be hard to display because everything is in reverse on printing plates. What they didn't realize is that when printing plates are displayed WITH a copy of the original page or the page itself within the same frame as the plate, the printing plate becomes suddenly eminently displayable. I have been tempted to send a photo to the Pawn Star folks, but probably never will get around to it. I have sold individual plates at the San Diego show for five hundred to one-thousand dollars, although with proper promotion, they should be worth many ties more.

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Chris Brown


I have extensive knowledge on comic books published from 1897 through 1975. My knowledge goes beyond superheroes to include early strip reprints from 1897-1930 or so, science fiction, horror comics of the 50s and 70s, love, crime, satire and other genres. I can provide advice on buying or selling comics as well as answering general queries.


I am a longtime collector and occasional seller of older comics.

Bachelor of Arts

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