Comic Pressing Service

The concept of comic book pressing is simple: it removes slight non-color-breaking defects in a comic book through non-restorative techniques in order to improve its appearance. CCS is the industry leader in comic book pressing, combining a refined process with unmatched knowledge and experience.

If you have chosen our screening service, we will decide which comics are appropriate candidates for pressing. Those comics that are determined to be appropriate candidates will be pressed. Screening fees are charged in addition to the pressing fees except for Walkthrough tier, where the screening fee will be waived if the services are performed. If we believe that the comic is not an appropriate candidate for pressing, you will pay only the screening fee, your comic will not be pressed and it will either be returned to you or transferred to CGC for grading if so designated.

We have broken down the most basic questions below. When you feel that you are ready to submit your books to CCS, go to our submission page to start the process.


What exactly is pressing and how did it begin?

Pressing removes minor defects from comic books, such as dents, folds and bends to make the comic appear flatter and less flawed. Pressing will often enhance the appearance of a comic book.

In a general sense, pressing has been around since the beginning of comic book collecting. Crude and simple methods of pressing were employed in the beginning, with little thought given to long term effects. By the ‘80s pressing became more sophisticated, serving as part of the evolving restoration process. In the ‘90s pressing became linked to water and solvent cleaning (hence the catch phrase “cleaning and pressing”) as general cleaning broke away from the restoration process. Some did not consider cleaning and pressing to be restoration during this time.

That all changed when CGC entered the market in 2000. CGC immediately considered water or solvent cleaning to be restoration. This leaves pressing as the sole technique allowed on unrestored comic books. CCS has developed a process that maximizes the outcome and minimizes the hazards.

CCS is the leader in professional comic book pressing. Our secret, multi-step process has been modified and honed through thousands of hours of research and pressing tens of thousands of comic books.

One misunderstanding about pressing is that it is easy; this is based on peoples’ awareness of unsophisticated pressing techniques from prior decades. It results in poor, ineffectual pressing that can adversely affect your comic books. There are people who claim to press comics today that in fact have very little experience under their belt. Given the many variables involved with pressing-Golden Age vs. Silver Age vs. Moderns, DC vs. Marvel, low grade vs. high grade, tanned pages vs. white pages, the countless combination of defects—there is no simple way to press a book. It is important that you consider who has invested the most time and effort into how to account for these variables to insure your books safely reach their full potential.


Does CGC consider pressing to be restoration?

CGC does not consider pressing to be restoration. Read more on the CGC website. CGC also does not consider dry cleaning to be restoration, which we automatically include in our pressing service. Dry cleaning’s main purpose is to remove dirt or pencil from a cover, particularly in the white areas. Dry cleaning does not remove tanning, stains, pen or marker, sun shadows or foxing. If we feel your book’s grade would benefit from a dry cleaning, we will automatically perform this during the press process.


How do you press a comic?

We get asked this quite often, but our process is a trade secret. It’s a process we have spent thousands of hours developing through research, testing, and pressing tens of thousands of comics. We strive to make sure every technique is safe for the short and long term. Our pressing process does not involve disassembly, nor do we use abrasive materials like chemicals, nor do we perform any work that is considered restoration. The end result is undetectable, with each comic exhibiting a fresh, untouched look and feel.


How do I spot a good pressing candidate?

The first step is to identify a comic book’s “good” defects and “bad” defects. In short, good defects can be diminished or removed with pressing, and the bad defects cannot. Here is a comprehensive list of both:

Good defects (do not break color) Bad defects
Dents
Bends
Folds
Light creases
Minor spine stresses
Impacted corners or edges
Slight warping
Ripples (with no stains present)
Spine rolls
Waviness
Stacking bends
Light cover impressions
Light pencil marks (usually in white areas)
Dirt
Creases that break color
Missing chips or pieces
Tears
Stains
Detached staples or staple tears
Spine stresses that break color
Fading
Fingerprints or smudges
Dust shadows or sun shadows
Rusted staples or rust stains
Rounded or blunted corners
Pen markings or printer ink
Cover veins
Brown or brittle cover or pages

Identifying good press candidates can be very challenging because it requires you to understand the projected outcome.

It is also important to note that just because a comic exhibits good defects does not mean it will automatically increase in grade with a pressing.


What grade range is the best for pressing candidates?

The grades that most benefit from pressing typically falls between 8.0 and 9.6. Because pressing removes small defects like bends, folds, dents and non-color breaking spine stress, improvements from pressing tend to be subtle, which means they have the greatest impact on very high grade books that exhibit only minor flaws. In many instances, however, lower grade comics will also be excellent candidates for pressing.


Can you press Signature Series comics and they still retain their yellow label?

Yes. We are authorized by CGC to press SS books as long as the submitter chooses to have them transferred directly from CCS to CGC. Please note that CGC will charge the applicable Signature Series grading fees. CGC graders know only that the book is Signature Series and have no knowledge of the previous grade or any work performed by CCS.


Do you offer discounts for bulk pressing?

We do not currently offer discounts for bulk pressing.


What happens to the old labels for CGC books that are pressed?

When we remove a book from its CGC holder to press and transfer it to CGC, the old label is included with the book. CGC’s Receiving department will remove the grade from the Census and destroy the label. CGC graders will never see the label or previous grade. If a CGC graded book is pressed by CCS and returned to you uncertified, the old tag will be included with the book. In this situation it will be up to you to return the label to CGC for census accuracy.


Will CGC graders be made aware that my book has been pressed?

No. CGC graders will not be made aware that CCS has pressed a comic, except in instances where other methods of restoration have also been performed. CCS’s pressing and CGC’s grading services are handled completely independently from one other.


Do multiple pressings hurt my comic?

When considering a comic for another pressing and resubmission to CGC, one question inevitably arises: will multiple pressings hurt my comic book?

There are various levels of pressing we have witnessed in the hobby, from spot pressing to very aggressive methods. The more aggressive techniques can cause warping, cockling, waves, color loss, flaring, damage to staple areas, and an overall limpness to a book, even with one pressing. With slightly less aggressive techniques, one press may not damage a book, but multiple pressings using the same method can produce negative results.

Our pressings are devised to remove all “good” defects without causing the unwanted side effects that can negatively impact grade. Our process allows for safe multiple pressings, and can even diminish or completely remove negative effects a book may exhibit from someone else’s improper pressing.

This last scenario has become more commonplace as others attempt to press comics in recent years. We get a lot of other peoples’ pressed comics through our doors, either to fix damage caused by their improper pressing, or to remove defects they were unable to fix with their process.

The bottom line is, because of the number of years we’ve been pressing, the number of books we have pressed, and the depth of knowledge we have, there is no one else in the industry that can duplicate the safety and effectiveness of pressings we provide.


Is it possible my CGC graded comic will receive a lower grade after pressing?

While rare, it is possible that a CGC-certified comic will receive a lower grade after it has been pressed. It is also possible that a pressed book will see no grade change even though the technique was properly performed. CCS does not offer any type of grade guarantee for any comic subsequently graded or certified by a grading company or individual.


I’m ready to submit my comics for pressing.

Once you’ve read through the information above and you’re ready to submit, simply go to the submission page and follow the instructions. You must be a CGC Collectors Society member or CGC Authorized Member Dealer to submit comics to CCS. CCS and CGC are independent members of the Certified Collectibles Group.


How does the process work once I submit my comics for pressing?

After you have finished entering all of your books in a new work order through our website, you’ll print the work order and mail it with your books. Once they arrive they will be marked as “received” in the work order and an email notification will be sent to you.

If you have chosen our screening service, we will decide which comics are appropriate candidates for pressing. Those comics that are determined to be appropriate candidates will be pressed. Screening fees are charged in addition to the pressing fees except for Walkthrough tier, where the screening fee will be waived if the services are performed. If we believe that the comic is not an appropriate candidate for pressing, you will pay only the screening fee, your comic will not be pressed and it will either be returned to you or transferred to CGC for grading if so designated.

Once your comics have been pressed, they will either be shipped back to you or be transferred to CGC if you have chosen to have them graded. The work order status will be marked “shipped” and a copy of your invoice will be emailed to you. For comics going to CGC, their invoice numbers will be recorded at the bottom of your CCS invoice. Once CGC finishes grading your comics, they will be shipped directly back to you. Your work orders and invoices can be viewed on our website any time.

At no time will CCS assess any grade to a comic, nor will CGC graders be made aware that CCS has pressed the comic (except in instances where other methods of restoration have also been performed).

You must be a CGC Collectors Society member or a CGC Authorized Member Dealer to submit books to CCS. To learn more about the CGC Collectors Society membership options, click here.

All CGC grading, handling and shipping fees will be billed by CGC.