Saturday, 17 September 2016

Weekly Update #148: Guys & Minds Hardcovers

A VERY special Cerebus fan orders custom-made hardcovers of Minds and Guys... for $10,000 each!
No, we're not kidding.

See also: Why mass-market 'Cerebus Hardcovers' will probably never happen.


Travis Pelkie said...

Without seeing either version myself...

if the current version is on heavier paper stock EXCEPT for the cover, which is the same stock, wouldn't that, by definition, make things flimsier for the new version? It's the same paper weight of the cover trying to hold a heavier inside.

That said, from what Dave showed, they look pretty similar, I guess, flimsiness-wise.

But I wonder if there will be more cases of the cover coming loose from the interiors?

Also, I think if Dave is going to cough like that, he's not fit to be preserving comics art. If he has the nerve to succumb at all to human frailty, he should stop trying to preserve the art and cede all duties to...whomever.

Ahem. ending sarcasm now... ;)

Steve said...

I seem to remember asking Sean about the possibility of fan's purchasing digital files for each book as the restoration is completed, specifically for the purpose of doing a custom printing / binding project of my own.

But not at a $10K price point.

(And I believe it was soon after my question that the Cerebus Oversize project was unveiled.)

And who in the world is Matt Paper?


Paul Slade said...

I wonder if the point about the remastered Reads' alleged flimsiness comes from an unconscious comparison of it with the two earlier remastered volumes - both of which have a much higher page count? Just a thought.

And speaking of the remastered Reads:

You may remember I posted a couple of AMOC comments recently about my problems ordering a copy of the book through Gosh! Comics here in London.

I stopped by the shop last Wednesday (14th) and enquired again about my order. The guy behind the counter checked Diamond UK’s online catalogue again for me as I stood there and found Reads IS now listed as in stock. He’d already ordered the book for me, and tells me that, with luck, it should now reach the shop for my collection on Weds 21st .

Diamond UK must have added the book very recently, because Gosh! had previously checked for me a couple of weeks ago and found no trace of any Reads edition in their listings at that point. I won’t quite believe this UK distribution issue is fully resolved till I’ve got the book in my hot little hands but, as things stand at the moment, I’d say it’s looking quite promising.

Sean R said...

The restored READS was printed in North America, at Marquis in Quebec, using a fantastic-performing paper that happens to be much thinner than the plate-like paper we used for C + S I. That style of paper ("woodfree," i.e. all mechanical pulp stripped out) isn't available from North American paper mills, as it's sourced from bamboo. But it doesn't seem like a loss to me, from a performance standpoint anyway--the North American paper (Rolland Enviro Satin) outperforms the woodfree Senlis we used on C + S I, and is more readable on long/giant books, imho.

We also spent a lot (relatively) per unit on the binding--smythsewn binding, meaning all of the signatures were sewn separately before being bound together. THis is a very durable binding that can lie flat, a huge leap from the previous "Perfect" binding (i.e. the edge of the signatures ground down and then glued together with hot glue, leaving things reluctant to open very far)

So--flimsy? Huh. Thin? Yes, compared to C + S I, but thicker than the original READS printing by a bit.

Would be curious to hear some specific suggestions. THicker card for the cover? THicker interior stock (which is available for the interior paper we've chosen). Both of these choices would come with cost penalties.

Jeff Seiler said...

The discussion that Menachem and I had, on the day I received my copy from him in the mail, stemmed in large part from his having received all of his original order in damaged condition. He had to return them and wait for replacements, meaning I had to wait for my copy. He attributed the damage in part to the so-called flimsiness. I told him that I agreed that it seemed flimsy, although as I think about it now, perhaps floppy is slightly more accurate.

Menachem and I rather quickly concurred that, for the thinner volumes, perhaps a thicker (heavier) card stock for the cover might be in order. So, yes, Travis, good call. And, yes, Sean, it would push up the price point a bit, but I happen to think the new version is undervalued at $20US.

Just a thought.

I'll call Menachem and see if I can get him to weigh in here...

Jeff Seiler said...

Okay, I forgot. Menachem closes the store on Saturdays, due to the Sabbath. So I'll leave a message for him to check out this post and comments tomorrow and, I hope, chime in.

Jeff Seiler said...

BTW, is it just me, or is there some color in the lower left corner of that original cover art for volume one?

Travis Pelkie said...

Oh, the issue was that Menachem received his order damaged from Diamond? Well, that has nothing to do with the product in and of itself, it's because it came from Diamond.


Without the snark, there have been too many reports that I've seen on Bleeding Cool and from my own guy's shop that makes it appear that Diamond just doesn't take enough care in packing and shipping comics out, and they SHOULD know that in our hobby, the condition of the object is a big consideration for a lot of us. Usually, I can live with a dinged up 3-4 dollar book, but when I got my copy of the remastered Cerebus v1, I had my guy re-order because the copy came with a dinged up corner. For 35 bucks, I expect it to not be bent or folded until I get my grubby paws on it!

al roney said...

Hardcovers eliminate flimsiness completely...

...kidding (sort of)!

Uh, Sandeep? Could ya at least send me a link that works (the current one is busted) for the CAN5 Downloads (I bought the portfolio)?

I'm bored and would love to read those letters...

"smiley face".

Menachem Luchins said...

Hi everyone. I was comparing Reads to the other volumes of the re-mastered versions, not to the older versions of Reads.
Sorry for the confusion!
Bye everyone.

Dave Sim said...

I have to admit that I'm not a "mint" guy -- except when it comes to preserving the 50 copies of each issue in THe Cerebus Archive that Sandeep and Fisher and Rollie have been working on for about a year now. Or the CEREBUS ARCHIVE Portfolios: making sure they get to everyone in mint AND specifying that we'll replace ANY damaged copy no questions asked (that is, if YOU, as the customer, consider it damaged, it's damaged).

Menachem - Do you think that the 250-page books (MELMOTH, WOMEN, READS, MINDS) need heavier cardstock for the cover? Again, I'm not seeing it, personally, but -- in between books (assuming we ever GET to the point where we're in between books with Marquis), we could probably get them to mock up a couple of different variations and send them to you.

Sean - The problem I see with changing the paper as a "going forward" policy is that on the thicker books it just makes them WAY too thick. I'm inferring (perhaps incorrectly) that what Menachem is talking about is the 250-page books specifically. In which case, I think we start with mocking up 250-page books with thicker cover stock. If that solves the problem (and I infer -- perhaps incorrectly -- that Menachem doesn't see a problem with the thicker remastered books), then we don't have to worry about consistent thickness of the books.

See what Marquis has to say about it.

al roney - I'll mention it to Sandeep when he comes in tomorrow. Is it GENERALLY busted or just busted SPECIFICALLY to you?

Paul Slade - Thanks for your fax, keeping me posted on the GOSH situation. I guess we'll know in a couple of days!

Travis - If it's any consolation, I only thought of the line because I had never coughed on camera before. Which is weird since that's going back seven years to CEREBUS TV.

I should also mention that the Secretary Clinton "bonus strip" last week was Sandeep's idea which he tweeted under his own name and posted to his Facebook page...and then Tim decided to post it with the week's OFFICIAL CEREBUS IN HELL?

So, I hope, lesson learned: there's no such thing as an UNOFFICIAL or PERSONAL CEREBUS IN HELL? strip. But, trust me, I had nothing to do with it.

And hopefully other lesson learned: if you're offended by a CEREBUS IN HELL? strip, better safe than sorry when it comes to who you're offended AT. Just ask, we'll be glad to tell you! :)

Menachem Luchins said...

Dave- I was, indeed, saying that the thinner books (250 pagers) are the issue at hand. I honestly don't know if thicker cardstock is the answer. I mean, it would probably help but I am ALSO not a big "mint condition" guy and am perfectly happy with my bent-corner remastered Reads. If the cost wouldn't shift too drastically (like, $5 or less I would say, is a good limit) then yeah, sure- why not?
But if it's going to be a whole crazy thing... It doesn't seem worth it. I and all the other retailers (all those Cerebus retailers, you know there are lots of us, secretly, biding our time) will just keep sending 'em back to Diamond until they pack them carefully.
And hey, ANY time you want to send me so mock-ups or even unbound wrap around covers... go for it. The Wall of Cerebus is always open to new additions! :D

Dave Sim said...

Menachem - Thanks. Diamond definitely has very strict rules for shipping books to them, right down to the size of the box. Which, I think has to do with storage issues at the Star System in Memphis. If all of the boxes that come in are the same size - EXACTLY -- you can use your space more economically and predictably. Picture the sheer volume of trade paperbacks entering the Memphis warehouse on a daily basis, all of which need to be found on a moment's notice and all of which are at a variety of inventory levels at any given moment. A city-block square lake filled with inventory tidal pools.

Packaging Too in Waterloo repacks all of our storage boxes according to the exact Diamond specs -- which, as far as I can see, are all directed towards making sure the books arrive in mint condition and can be stored on shelves designed to hold those size of boxes. The most recent order for 103 JAKA'S STORY departed on the 19th and -- repacking, shipping and customs costs -- are ca. $300 on a ca. $1200 order.

Like so many elements in the comic-book field, we're all engaged in impossible tasks: moving heavyweight (the only thing heavier than paper is cement, is a shipping truism) printed matter over vast distances and requiring that it arrive in perfect condition. And we've been doing it on a weekly basis for decades!

Dave Sim said...

Menachem II - I don't know if we'll ever do individual order fulfillment again, but one of the things I'd look into if we did (as I know you do) is: "mint" shipping prices and "just getting it there" shipping prices. How much of a savings is there?

Dave Sim said...

al roney - Hi al, just noticed your hardcover reference. Auto-response: read my post for July 6 of this year: that outlines chapter and verse the hoops anyone would need to jump through for me to agree to do A hardcover or hardcoverS generally.

Can I ask for volunteers to jump in anytime anyone mentions hardcovers?:

"If you want hardcovers, read Dave's post for July 6, 2016. That tells you what you need to know."

Tony Dunlop said...

Or what I've been saying for years: Hardcovers will have to wait until Cerebus is in the public domain - hopefully many years from now!

Paul Slade said...

Just to clear this issue up once and for all, my copy of the remastered Reads arrived safely at Gosh! in London where I collected it today. The system works!

Paul Slade said...

Just to draw a line under this whole Diamond UK discussion, my copy of Reads arrived at Gosh! just as promised and is now safely in my possession. No sign of any damage in transit either. Hurrah!