Comic Restoration Removal Service

CCS’ Restoration Removal service is designed to remove very minor, unnecessary restoration from comics. In many cases, after CCS Restoration Removal comics will receive an unrestored grade from CGC.

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Before and after restoration removal. This book involved the removal of a very minor amount of acrylic color touch on part of the spine. Because of the professional nature of the touch-up, restoration removal was a safe choice.

It is important to note that the grade of a comic often decreases after restoration removal because concealed defects, such as color breaks or tears, become visible again. This is mostly true for high grade comics and with lower grade comics it is less likely that restoration removal will significantly impact the grade.

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In this case a few stress lines were color touched in the box, as well as the purple banner below it. The removal resulted in more noticeable defects, thus lowering the grade.

Only a tiny fraction of restored comics are feasible removal candidates; the restoration must be slight in nature, and only certain kinds of restoration can be reversed, such as color touch, glue, and rice paper repairs. Cover or interior cleaning cannot be reversed, neither can trimming replaced or cleaned staples.

The best removal candidates exhibit professional restoration that can be safely removed with minimal risk to the book itself. This includes tear seals and support using rice paper and water-soluble adhesive, and color touch using acrylics, chalk or watercolors. Removing amateur restoration, which includes the use of hard glue for tear seals and markers or pen for color touch (resulting in bleedthrough), can often deface a comic because it is necessary to scrape, dig and cut the affected parts to achieve an unrestored grade.

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A great example of an excellent removal candidate; the color touch removal was extremely minor.


For Golden Age comics, CGC allows very minor color touch or glue on unrestored books, giving them a label often called “blue with notes.” In these cases the color touch is infinitesimal, and the traces of glue cannot serve a function (like seal a tear or hold a staple in place).

For spine support and sealed splits, be aware that removal often results in a cover becoming detached from the interior and/or the cover splitting in two along the spine. We do not recommend the reversal of this kind of work.

There are four categories of slightly restored CGC books, which are listed below in order of feasibility:

  1. Slight (P) very small amount of glue/color touch (the best scenario, professional and “very small”)
  2. Slight (A) very small amount of glue/color touch (tiny restoration, but will involve some defacement)
  3. Slight (P) small amount of glue/color touch (possibly too much resto to safely remove, but pro work)
  4. Slight (A) small amount of glue/color touch (the worst scenario, possibly too much to safely remove)
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Another good example of very minor color touch removal. Black parts of the cover are the most commonly touched areas on restored books. This one was acrylic.

We take a very conservative approach with restoration removal, and believe it is wise to remove too little restoration rather than “go overboard” with removal which can sometimes cause a significant decrease in grade.

Although the professionals at CCS will work to achieve the best possible results, because of the subjective and sometimes unpredictable nature of their work a particular outcome, including the comics’ grade, cannot be guaranteed.