SSGC Coin Grading Scale

The Seven Seas Grading Company recognizes and uses world renown Sheldon Grading Scale of 1 to 70. The Sheldon Scale was adopted and was first used in the United States in the 1940’s. Sheldon Scale, well recognized around the world and was adopted as the grading method used when¬†SSGC¬†began operations in 2020 which is considered the industry standard.

All graded coins will be encapsulated and assigned a Strike Type and a numeric grade using the Sheldon Scale.

A sample Sheldon Scale grade given to a SSGC certified coin.
A sample Sheldon Scale grade given to a SSGC certified coin.

Strike Type

MSMint State are coins struck in circulation issues.Grades of Mint State is 60 to 70.
PFProof Coins are coins struck at the Mint in a special format for collectors.
SPSpecimen type coins are a type of hybrid between Proof and Mint State.

Sheldon Scale Numeric Grades

MS/PF 70The perfect coin. Very attractive, sharp strike, luster of high quality, No Contact marks are visible under magnification.
MS/PF 69Very attractive sharply struck with only minimum imperfections (2). No hairlines or scuff marks can be seen
MS/PF 68Attractive sharp strike, full original luster, with no more than 4 light scattered contact marks or flaws.
MS/PF 67Normal strike, original luster, has 3 - 4 minor contact marks, and 1 noticeable but not distracting. Eye appeal is above average.
MS/PF 66Above average quality of surface and Mint luster. No more than 3 - 4 minor/noticeable contact marks. Hairlines show under magnification.
MS/PF 65Attractive high quality of luster and strike. 2 larger marks may be visible, with a few scattered marks, 1 - 2 small patches of hairlines may show.
MS/PF 64Average strike and luster, 1 - 2 heavy marks, 1 - 2 small patches of hairlines may show, light scuff marks or defects appear.
MS/PF 63Slightly weak or average strike with moderate abrasions and hairlines of varying sizes.
MS/PF 62Luster appears dull, clusters of small marks throughout, few large marks or nicks in prime focus areas, eye appeal is below average.
MS/PF 61Luster diminished, surface may have large clusters and small contact marks, eye appeal is somewhat unattractive.
MS/PF 60Unattractive, dull or washed out mint luster, many large contact marks, large area of scuff marks, rim nicks, eye appeal very poor.
AU 58Bare signs of trace wear on 1 or more high points, major distracting contact marks, attractive eye appeal and nearly full luster present.
AU 55Only small patches of wear are visible on high points of the design, wear occurs different spots of design, eye appeal and surface average.
AU 53Noticeable spots of wear on high points, few contact marks or blemishes, generally good eye appeal, luster diminished.
AU 50Traces of wear appear on many high points of the design, few contact marks or flaws, some mint luster still present.
EF 45Light overall wear on highest points, design detail sharp, mint luster appears in protected areas.
EF 40Slight wear but more extensive with over all sharpness, traces of mint luster appear, design elements show clearly.
VF 35Surfaces show light overall wear with minor blemishes, 1 - 2 rim nicks, details show clearly.
VF 30Light even wear appears on the surface, design details on high points show wear, legend and major features still bold.
VF 25Entire surface shows light signs of wear and softening of design, major features strong and clear, minor details blend into design.
VF 20Noticeable wear on high points of design, detail are beginning to flatten, surfaces are attractive and free of serious nicks and scratches.
F 15Shows moderate even wear through the surface, design is bold and clear with traces of flattening.
F 12Considerable even wear, design is bold, legend is visible but shows flattening or parts of letters.
VG 10Wear is even throughout entire coin, portions of rim flat, legend may be readable and show signs of wear or flattening.
VG 8Coin is well worn, major design elements visible with faintness in areas, features visible without center details.
G 6Heavily worn, clean attractive features, no major blemishes, rim nicks and scratches, rim very weak but basically complete.
G 4Heavily worn, design elements visible with faintness in areas, major features outlines without center details, rim incomplete in areas.
AG 3Very heavily worn, portions of legend or date, legend worn smooth, date barely visible, rims merge into legend.
Fair 2Design details worn almost completely smooth, legend and date merged into fields, date barely readable, rims merge into lettering.
Poor 1Basic coin type is identifiable, Mintmark and date must be strong enough to read, surface worn entirely, numerous blemishes.

Additional Terms

RDCoin luster appears red. Relates usually to copper coins.
RBCoin luster appears redish-brown. Relates usually to copper coins.
BNCoin luster appears brown. Relates usually to copper coins.
PLCoin luster in fields deeply mirrored. Does not apply to proof or modified proof coins.