How I try to Grade Cards

Well, none of us are professional graders, although, I do collect graded cards. I like to think I do pretty well grading raw cards, of course not everyone agrees. Either way, here is a short description of how I provide a grade to the cards on the website. The first couple quick things:

  1. I assume most new stuff in Mint/Near Mint so I don’t bother grading it, unless there is an issue.
  2. I count anything from pre-1980 (including 1980) as Vintage.
  3. Any card trimmed, colored or otherwise altered is automatically (Poor – lowest grade)

Speaking of Grades/Condition here is ta link to the PSA grading standards. It’s pretty much what I use.

In short it goes like this:

GEM MINT (GM): A virtually perfect card. Coloring, centering, corners, edges, overall appearance, even the reverse.

MINT (MT): Awesome looking card. Slight (very slight) off-centering, minor color issue.

NEAR MINT/MINT (NM/MT): Still an awesome looking card, but upon a closer inspection may have a minor ding on an edge, corner, slightly off centered, minor print defect.

NEAR MINT (NM): May have minor surface wear, minor ding(s), minor print defect, minor off-centering

EXCELLENT-MINT (EX-MT): May have visible surface wear, obvious print defect (that does not distract from the overall appearance of the card), visible dings on corner(s) and edge(s). Off-centering issues.

EXCELLENT (EX): May have slight rounding of the corners starting, visible surface wear, light scratching on the surface

VERY GOOD – EXCELLENT (VG-EX): More rounding of the corners, more visible surface wear, possibly even light creasing, visual print defect that takes away from the card’s appeal. major off-centering issues, off-color issues.

VERY GOOD (VG): Rounding of the corners, surface scratches, noticeable loss of gloss on the surface, color issues, centering issues. Light creasing is visible.

GOOD (GD) or FAIR (FR): Creasing very visible, Corners rounded, surface gloss worn

POOR (PR): Major damage. The card is authentic, but creased, etc…