DIM Paper Money Grading Scale

DIM uses a 70-point numerical scale derived from the internationally recognized Sheldon grading scale. The following descriptions show how a note’s condition is reflected by the grades assigned by DIM.

What is a 70?

DIM defines a 70 as having no evidence of handling visible at 5x magnification. Notes graded 70 must also qualify for the DIM Exceptional Paper Quality (EPQ) and DIM Star () Designations.

The DIM Grading Scale

70 Gem Unc

70 EPQ

The highest grade assigned. Notes must have no evidence of handling visible at 5x magnification.
The margins and registration must appear centered to the unaided eye. Notes must qualify for the
DIM Star Designation to be graded 70.
Superb Gem Unc

69 EPQ

This note is nearly visually indistinguishable from a 70 but the margins and registration may appear
slightly off center. There is no evidence of handling visible to the unaided eye.
Superb Gem Unc

68 EPQ

The margins and registration are slightly off center. There may be very minor handling.

Superb Gem Unc

67 EPQ

A note with above-average margins and registration. There may be minor handling.
Gem Uncirculated

66 EPQ

There may be slightly more handling than a 67 EPQ note. The centering must be above average.
Gem Uncirculated

65 EPQ

The note may have one or two minor distractions as a result of minor handling. The centering must
be above average.

EPQ =( Exceptional Paper Quality) Give the paper a rating greater than 65 and higher.

64 to 25 is not given EPQ

Choice Uncirculated


The centering is off on one or two sides. Some handling may be evident but there must be no folds
in the design.
Choice Uncirculated


The centering is imperfect and the design may be flat. There may be several flaws but there will be
no folds.


The note is strictly uncirculated but may have minor-to- moderate handling and/or corner tip issues.
There will be no folds, however. The margins may touch or come into the design.


The note is poorly centered and the margins come into the design. There may be counting marks,
smudges or other signs of handling. There will be no folds through the design.


A note with problems that may include toned paper, a small stain or fading. There will be handling
issues but there will be no folds through the design.
Choice About Unc


Often a note with a single fold that crosses the design.
About Uncirculated


This grade is commonly assigned to a note that has one fold or two to three corner folds through the
About Uncirculated


The note has two heavier folds or light horizontal and vertical folds. The handling can be significant.
Choice Extremely Fine


A note with two to three heavy folds, one of which may be horizontal.
Extremely Fine


There are three or more folds, one of which may be horizontal.
Choice Very Fine


For years dealers and collectors called this grade “VF-XF.” This note looks Extremely Fine, but it will
have four to seven light folds.
Very Fine


This note will be lightly circulated and may have light soiling. There will typically be seven to ten folds.
Very Fine


This note may look like a Very Fine note, but upon closer examination it is found to have too many
folds or too much circulation to warrant a Very Fine grade.
Choice Fine


The note is moderately circulated with numerous folds, mild soiling. There are no serious detractions
but there may be minor defects.


The evidence of circulation is considerable with rounded corners, margin splits and other issues. The
note must be whole with solid paper.
Very Good


A solid, whole note with lots of circulation. The note is too limp and has a number of minor problems.
Very Good


The note is heavily circulated but is intact. Some small pieces may be missing. Soiling, light stains or
splits are common for this grade. The note is limp.


A very heavily circulated note with numerous problems. It is totally limp with impaired visual appeal.
Notes in this grade are commonly seen with pieces missing.