Ebay item descriptions relating to Limited Edition Prints and the shipping often include the words " The print will be shipped rolled in a rigid tube to avoid damage."
Rolling a print can cause damage to the paper. Especially if the print is then left in the tube and stored that way for some time. This often happens with inexperienced buyers. I think there should be a warning about this on the tube or invoice.
For my framing I always use a Fine Art Trade Qualified conservation framer.We have built up a good working relationshipover the years and I know I can rely on him.
Several years ago I took him some prints to frame. They were large ones rolled in a tube to " prevent damage". They had not been in the tube long after purchase when I took the prints to him. He told me that it is sometimes difficult to get prints perfectly flat when they have been rolled, especially the larger ones.
This explained why I had a bad experience with a very large print framed by a previous, non-qualifed, framer. He took the print straight from the rolled state and framed it It did not lay right in the frame and I subsequently had to have it reframed. The print was quite valuable but it could never have been sold as excellent or even very good. I ended up giving it to someone as a present and it takes pride of place in there front lounge.
Now whenever I buy loose prints I insist on them being shipped flat. It might cost a few pounds more but it is well worth it.
I did slip up recently when I forgot to stipulate that I wanted prints shipping flat. They arrived rolled in a tube. The archival paper was very thick and top quality. Suffice to say that when removed from the tube on day of receipt they would not lay flat. I had to store them flat in a rigid slip for a few days before taking them to be framed.
An advantage with having prints shipped flat is that they can be taken to the framer virtually without unpacking them and framed immediately with no risk of distortion. They can also be stored in this state without fear of permanent damage.
Now I refuse to ship prints rolled. This does add to the cost of shipping materials and sometimes to mailing costs but I know that I am not causing unnecessary damage and my customers get best service.
Remember, if you cannot get prints shipped to you flat and they have to be in tubes get them out of the tubes immediately and get them stored flat. Better still get them quality framed or mounted.
Having loose prints properly mounted and wrapped is an excellent way to store and ship them.