Author Topic: Grades of Fur  (Read 12808 times)

Offline Hern

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Grades of Fur
« on: December 15, 2007, 04:58:55 AM »
So you have some beautiful fur and you put 'em up well.
Here's an insight how the large Canadian auction houses grade your fur. All fur going to these auction houses get graded this way.
There are 4 areas graders look for...defects (damages/imperfections), size (dried to correct size and not over stretched), weight (this means, is the fur prime, flat, semi and so on), and color (this means, is the fur dark, extra dark, pale, extra pale and so on).
So if you think you did a good put-job and your fur is good color and well handled...this is where you get graded hardest. Or if'n you are selling to a local buyer, he, in turn is more than likely shipping to Canada at the end of the season. If your fur is not handled well the local buyer will downgrade your fur because he knows he will be downgrade when reselling.

(except Muskrats - see further down)
IPTII Fully prime, above average in quality, texture and pelt preparation. No defects.
I & II Prime pelt of above average quality and texture.
Good II Slightly early pelt with well finished guard hair but lacking underfur.
II Early or late pelt with incomplete guard hair and lacking underfur.
III Very early or late pelt with poor finish, little or no underfur, dark coloured leather.
IV & V Inferior pelt of little or no commercial value.

Good Slight (GD SLT) Good quality with small imperfections.
Slight damaged (SLT DGD) Average quality with small imperfections.
Good damaged (GD DGD) Good quality with large imperfections.
Regular damaged (REG DGD) Average quality with large imperfections.
Badly damaged (BDLY DGD) Extensive damage, little or no value.
Tainted Area of pelt has rotted, little or no value.


    Largest size, Jumbo 0
    Extra, extra large 1
    Extra large 2
    Large 3
    Large medium 4
    Medium 5
    Small 6
    Extra small 7

GD: Good ORD: Ordinary
SLT: Slight DGD: Damaged
BDLY: Badly PT: Part
RBD: Rubbed STND: Stained
GRSY: Greasy HVY: Heavy
S: Singed SH: Straight Hair
LT: Light ASST: Assorted
RR: Red Rim DK: Dark
BR: Brown T/S: Ticks and Scars

Red Fox  
Marten (Sable)  
Heavy prime, very dense underfur, shearable long nap length, deep underfur long nap, deep underfur deep, thick underfur
Semi dense underfur, suitable for short shear medium nap length, medium underfur medium nap length, medium underfur medium density or underfur
Light or Flat lacks underfur, not recommended for shearing coat, short nap short nap, low underfur low density or underfur

A denotes the most desirable colour through D, least desirable,
except beaver where D denotes pale.
X preceding a letter indicates Extra ie. X-A=Extra Dark, X-D=Extra Pale
Some additional descriptive terminology may be used to denote unusual colouration.

Red Fox  

Eastern (A,B,C)  
Western (XXPale to ORD)  
A - D Colour of Back  
1 - 4
Colour of belly  
1 - 3  
A clear, very dark, natural colour XXPALE: double extra pale bright, silvery, clear underfur extra pale 1: clear, white belly deep, dark rich red clear, very dark bright white belly XPALE: extra pale 1: clear
B dark, slightly brownish XPALE: extra pale slightly yellow or brownish pale 2: slight off belly medium dark red dark, dark brown narrower belly, slightly brownish PALE 2: slight off/casty underfur
C brown to red over all PALE yellow to brown yellowish cast 3: off belly pale red brown narrow belly, noticeable brown red band LT BRN: Light brown 3: off/
reddish underfur
D   ORD: ordinary/ reddish brown dark yellow to brown or orange tawney 4: very off (brown) belly very pale to yellow pale very narrow or red belly BRN: brown  
XD                   extra pale    DK: Dark    

Heavy (HVY) Thick underfur and guard hair, heavy leather
Semi Thick underfur and guard hair, semi heavy leather
Fall Dry leather, poor fur quality
Light Light leather
Papery Ordinary quality
XSmall or
Kitts & Mice Immature muskrat, underdeveloped guard hair and extremely light leather.
Shedders Past prime, losing hair on kidney area
Damages Varying degrees of damage from slight through bad damaged


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Grades of Fur
« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2007, 04:25:56 PM »
Thanks for all that information, Maybe this should get locked somewhere on the board so people understand grading fur.

Offline CoyoteJeff

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Grades of Fur
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2007, 09:44:08 PM »
Thanks for the infro Hern.  Do you have the correct sizes for each ?
PPHA District 3

Offline Hern

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Grades of Fur
« Reply #3 on: December 16, 2007, 07:15:21 AM »
CJ asks-
Do you have the correct sizes for each ?
The 'size' chart above is the code for grading (graders code).
Do you mean the correct board size (streacher size?)?

Offline CoyoteJeff

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Grades of Fur
« Reply #4 on: December 16, 2007, 01:33:35 PM »
Correct board sizes for each .  length and width
PPHA District 3

Offline Cooper13

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Re: Grades of Fur
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2012, 11:46:49 PM »
WOW!..a wealth of info here!! i know nothing about skinning or even selling pelts but when i learn i will def come back to this info!!Thanks for your knowledge!!
District 4, Camp Hill

Offline Hern

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Re: Grades of Fur
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2017, 12:59:34 PM »
One other note on grades...I forgot to list.
A friend just as me...
If an * appears on your grade sheet, on a pelt or several pelts, what does that mean?

An Asterisk = a "Labeled" fur.
Labeled furs are the better grades and the buyers of them get "labels" to put on the finished garments.

From their web site:
"Garments carrying one of NAFA’s four quality labels provide consumers, designers and manufacturers alike the confidence that the furs used have met quality and environmental standards".

Offline Hern

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Re: Grades of Fur
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2017, 04:55:59 AM »