Record Grading and Bidding
BIDS MUST BE RECEIVED ON OR BEFORE THE CLOSING DATE:
5PM, Tuesday, January 3rd, 2017.
I would strongly suggest that overseas replies be posted by early December. Air Mail service can vary from a few days to a few weeks. Letters from the west coast (U.S.A.) can take as long as from one to two weeks. You may FAX [631-691-5207] or E-Mail [email@example.com] at any time of day or night. Telephone calls [631-598-2409] will be accepted weekdays from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time only. Please make use of the answering machine if necessary if you call at another time, being sure to mention your name. If a return call is required, please leave your telephone number. If possible, please attend to fax and e-mail dispatches prior to the last day. Last year (again) some seventy bid lists arrived the final day, considerably slowing down the closing and billing process. PLEASE DOUBLE-CHECK YOUR BIDS to be sure you are actually bidding on the items you want. There are a few mixups each year by collectors misreading order numbers and therefore bidding on the wrong items.
PAYMENTS are due within thirty days following the closing of the auction. Should your winning bids be beyond your budget or otherwise inconvenient, extended payments will be willingly accepted. These can be arranged as is comfortable for you. Billings will be mailed within ten days of the auction closing (likely on Jan. 4th). Postage and packing charges are estimates. If it turns out that your costs exceed the actual postage by more than $4.00 estimated (the cost of the packing materials involved), please advise when the parcel arrives and you will be credited the difference. Note that our postal system no longer provides surface mail so all parcels will have to be sent via Air Mail (with resultant costs). Please keep this in mind when bidding, Unfortunately, I do not have credit card facilities, so payment must be in check, draft, money order, or cash (if cash, via Registered, Certified, or Express mail for safety). The Internet Pay/Pal can be used with an additional 3.5%, please, to cover their charges to me. Direct bank account deposit is also acceptable as long as all fees are pre-paid. This must include an additional $15.00 which is levied once the payment reaches my account. All required account and transfer numbers will be included with your billing should you prefer to pay via direct transfer.
HOW TO FIND IT. Items have been grouped in sections [see the contents listing in the right-hand column], but as there are many "crossover" items, it would be wise to investigate the list thoroughly. Note the "late additions", which would include records in most categories. The larger groups have been alphabetized, but please notice that my catalogue numbers are not necessarily in numerical sequence. You are not missing pages as long as the page number sequence is accurate.
RESULTS OF YOUR BIDS. Confirmation as to what you've won (i.e. the bill) or if you haven't won anything should be in the mail by Saturday, January 7th. Please do not call regarding your final results unless there is some emergency. It only slows things down for everyone.
GRADING: Please note that the grading given includes both sides of a double-face record unless otherwise indicated. Specific side problems are indicated. Many items have appropriately high gradings as I am selective as to what is listed. I can assure you that the condition indications are realistic and, if anything, tend to the conservative rather than the optimistic. I like to "fine tune" the grading as much as possible, so you'll frequently see "just about", "conservative", or other such descriptions.
1. A sealed LP record.
1-2. Top condition 78, as new.
2. A very fine copy, a few light rubs or marks. No needle wear
(unless otherwise described).
2-3. Some rubs, marks, non-sounding blemishes. No needle wear
(unless otherwise described).
3. Heavier rubs, marks, non-sounding blemishes. An "average" copy. Please note,
however, that records in this and the above categories should not have needle
wear unless "greying" (LGTs) is indicated. Light sounding wear (greying), rubs.
Records in this category and below will have sounding defects
unless otherwise indicated.
4. Sounding wear, rubs, marks.
4-5. Wear, rubs, marks.
5. Obvious sounding wear, heavy rubs, marks.
5-6. Heavy wear, rubs, marks.
6. Quite dreadful looking. Such items are listed only if particularly rare or if the
playing condition is better than the appearance would indicate.
Please remember that as with beauty, grading is in the eye of the beholder. Two people grading the same record could easily come out with different ratings, even when the same grading scales are used. Those who have dealt with me in the past will know that what they receive will agree with what has been described. You don't want to be bothered by returning records and I don't want to bother with the packing, paper work and refunds involved, so I try my best to grade accurately and err on the conservative side. Of course if there are any errors on my part, the customer is always right and an adjustment will immediately take place.
All cracks, digs, nicks, ticks (i.e. tiny nicks), needle runs, or other forms of damage are described and are not part of the above grading. There should be no unpleasant surprises. As explained above, I take pride in the accuracy of the grading and all records are guaranteed to be as listed. If I have erred, money will be quickly (and cheerfully) refunded. My "almost" or "just about" qualification indicates that the record is much closer to the category cited than the category below it. "Cons." (conservative) would be basically between the listed grading and the next higher.
THE FOLLOWING ABBREVIATIONS have been used to facilitate grading: NR=needle run [or NS=needle scratch], TN=tiny nick (possibly one or two light sounds), SN=small nick (a few light sounds), ND=needle dig (a few heavier sounds), LSS=light superficial scratch (likely non-sounding), scr.=scratch, TB=tiny pressing bump (one or two light sounds possible), SB=small bump (a few light sounds possible), PC=pressure crack (hair crack on one side only, usually not sounding), MGT=minor grey trace (light needle wear, likely superficial), LGT=light grey trace (needle wear, likely sounding), flake=small chip from rim one side only (non-obtrusive unless described otherwise), chip=piece missing from record (both sides). In addition, gen. = generally, lt.=light, abt.=about, cons. = conservative, elec. (or el.)= electrical, RR=re-recording (not pressed from an original stamper), ULC=under label crack, crk.=crack. EE=early electrical recording (acoustical style label).
AS LABELS ARE OF CONCERN TO SOME COLLECTORS, listings can be presumed to have no label damage unless indicated. Many European and South American records were issued with affixed royalty stickers and original dealer labels. As these are, in essence, a part of the original production, they are not mentioned. In the case of stickers added later (usually for index purposes or in indicating a later vendor), the designation lbl. stkr. will be found. Labels bearing index marks written on the label (usually a letter for album and a number for sleeve) or other short bits of writing are cited by the abbreviation IMs. HMV records imported by Victor in the mid-'20s often have a "Special Record" sticker covering the HMV logo. These are designated as SR. In addition, Vr=Victor label, Vla=Victrola label, VrBk (or VlaBk)=Victor (or Victrola) back [decorative "etched" back on otherwise blank side], Pats.=Victor label with Patents information at bottom followed by the date [pressed 1909-1913], GP=Grand Prize label (pressed 1905-1908) followed by the reverse sticker date (please refer to Michael W. Sherman's highly recommended "The Collector's Guide to Victor Records" for a complete color display and description of Victor labels); Col.=Columbia, B&S=early Black and Silver Columbia label, TC=Tri-Color "Symphony Series" U.S. Columbia label [1908-1923], Flags=silver or gold Columbia lbl. with two flags (1924 through early 1925), VT="Viva-Tonal" electrical Columbia label [1926 to app. 1932]. EE = an early electric issue bearing an acoustic style label. VDP = Voce dal Padrone. VdSM = La Voix de son Maître. "Late VDP" refers to ‘50s Voce dal Padrone pressings (non-laminated, usually of particularly good quality shellac). If there is anything not clear in the listings, please do not hesitate to request further information.
VINYL PRESSINGS. Over the years, a number of special pressings have been made using differing sorts of flexible material, ranging from "Vitrolac" by RCA in the early 1930s through various types of plastic or vinyl through today's Historic Masters issues. I've made no attempt to differentiate and have called all such pressings "vinyl". "Red Vinyl" are mostly issues tested by Victor in the late 1940s, apparently mainly with their Heritage Series in mind.
HOW MUCH SHOULD I BID? The amounts given for the items are bidding starting points. Bargains are indeed possible, but as there are hundreds of bidders, I would suggest keeping in mind a realistic offer for items particularly sought. All bids (on or above the minimum figure), however, will be accepted and are very much appreciated. I keep the minimums at the lowest possible figure, even considering the outstanding condition and rarity of many offerings, so that all items will find new homes. The end result is that from 80% to 90% of the items listed do sell. As to the condition, I select for the list the most interesting and/or best copies of the thousands of records I see each year. I am therefore not being optimistic in the grading. In the case of multiple listings of the same record, EITHER/OR bids will be accepted (so you won't win more than one copy of the same item). Otherwise only unit bids should be entered. My computer program cannot accept group bids.
Overseas, Canadian and South American collectors may wish to keep in mind the present low value of the dollar as compared with your currency, an advantage to you in bidding.
ANY QUESTIONS? If anything on the list is not clear or you have any questions, please do not hesitate to telephone [1-631-598-2409, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. weekdays], answering machine operating when I am not available. Fax number is 631-691-5207 [available at all times] or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Mail: 54 East Lake Drive, Amityville, NY, 11701-3211 USA
Voice: 631-598-2409 • Fax: 631-691-5207
Back to Top