The Sheldon Scale is a 70-point scale for grading coins, developed by Dr. William Sheldon in 1949.

A slightly modified form of the Sheldon Scale has become the de facto standard for grading U.S. coins today, and is used by the major third party grading services when assigning a grade to a coin.


Now I don’t want to take anything away from Dr. Sheldon as he developed a system in 1949 and at that time and for 20-30-40 years this system was good.  What I want to do, is use Technology to clearly identify a coin that has been delivered to the Federal Banks and put into circulation.   AJsystem100.doc


Circulated coins:

It what a SET is worth.   A Set of Coins in GREAT shape.  A set of Coins that ANYONE can build and get graded. 


To get back to collecting coins that reflects our life style and affordability. 

97% of the coins in circulation are general coins, what separates that coin from one another is the fact that the owner took that coins from circulation.


PARAMETERS for Grading Circulated Coins:

1.      You must grade both sides of a coin. 

2.      You must note damage on the coin from 1 (scratches) to 10 (major)

3.      You must note alteration (deliberately) made 1 (buffed) to 10 (File)

4.      You must to the best of your ability determine the degree of CLEANING  1 (light)  to 10 (heavy)

(now the majority of coins in circulation has had some degree of cleaning)  


Take digital 10x photos of each side of the coin and then GRADE that photo. 

Photos are to be given to the owner and stored in a website such that can be retrieved by anybody looking for that particular coin.  YES it gets a serial number. 


Remember this is YOUR set, you collected it, you’ve dreamed about it, you’ve upgraded it and you have sold some of this set such to upgrade it. 



The scale is 1 to 100 --- Circulated coins only.  

No Proof,  NO Collectable (rare), No Mint State are not graded with this system as it is used to determine the value of a set of coins the same. 

They all you’re the traditional Sheldon system.

Sure, you can have mint state set put together by the collection system and offered for sale as a graded system, but where’s the fun in that? 

 Collecting the coin yourself is the glory!  The excitement!


Poor-1 to 5 (Poor)

 The type is barely discernible, but little else, due to the coin being badly damaged or worn smooth.


Fair-6 to 10 (Fair) - Type and date are barely discernible, but otherwise the coin is damaged or extremely worn.


AG-11-15  (About Good) - Type and date are discernible, although some spots may be worn out. Some lettering should be apparent, if not necessarily readable.


This is where we count by 10 because this is where most the wear will happen.

G-16-29 (Good) - Major devices and features are evident as outlines, although the coin overall is heavily worn.

Coin has a full rim plus major devices and features are clearly outlined. Heavy wear.


VG-30-39 (Very Good) - Full rim with clearly discernible devices and features. Most legends are readable clearly, but the whole coin is still significantly worn.


F-40-49 (Fine) - Distinct rim, all legends readable, clear devices showing some detail, but the whole coin is moderately, but evenly worn.


VF-50-59 (Very Fine) - Clearly readable but lightly worn legends, devices show good detail, rims are clean, but the whole coin shows moderate wear on the high points and a little wear below.


VF-60-69(Good Very Fine) - Legends are clear, devices show all detail with little wear; high points are lightly worn.


EF-70-79 (Extremely Fine) - Legends are sharp, devices are clear with slight but obvious wear on the high points.


XF-80-89 (Choice Extremely Fine) - Legends and devices are clear and sharp, with slight wear on the high points, and great eye appeal.


This grading is by 5 points since this is the hardest to actually grade!

AU-90-95 (About Uncirculated) - Sharp legends and devices show only a trace of wear on the highest points. There must be some remaining mint luster.


AU-96-100  Sharp legends and devices show only a hint of wear on the high points. Remaining mint luster must be at least half; great eye appeal.  

Virtually uncirculated, except for minor wear marks on high points. Nearly all mint luster must be present, and must have outstanding eye appeal.