> Should fine or first editions be kept in their shrink-wraps? If so, can a
> rough percentage of increase in value be expected because of that?
> Should magazines be kept in the factory-sealed shrink-wrap as well to
> their value?
Since no one else has taken a crack at this question, I'll have a go.
My inclination would be to remove the shrink-wrap, for the following
1) If it's wrapped, how do you know it's a first? (I'm only half joking,
but, okay, let's assume you know what's inside.)
2) If it's wrapped, how do you know what's inside? Again, only half
joking: Although it's unlikely, your volume may have something seriously
wrong with it--bad binding, missing or swapped signatures (bundles of
pages, that is), or a big ink blot or blank space where page 38 should
be--that couldn't be determined without removing the plastic.
3) Depending on the type and tautness of the plastic, the shrink-wrap might
cause some wrinkling or warping of the volume. And not all plastics are
chemically neutral; there might be some chance of chemical vapor damaging
the binding or paper. (I'm just guessing on this. Anyone out there know if
this is possible?)
Also, shrink-wrapping isn't a particularly unique or difficult process.
How could anyone be sure that the plastic was, in fact, the "original"
4) It is my understanding that books benefit from air circulation--that
"stifling" a book can hasten the degradation of the paper, especially
highly acidic paper.
On the other hand, I'd still be willing to bet that you could find buyers
who would pay a premium for a book or 'zine that was wrapped. I can only
say what I would do. Personally, I wouldn't want a book I couldn't open or
read. It's one thing to have a valuable first that you choose not to read,
but another to have a book that is utterly inaccessible.