The Real Coverage Index, or RCI, was created by a restorer who went by the name kong1971. The RCI was created in response to the Foreskin Coverage Index, which has been criticized for not indicating men's restoration status. The Foreskin Coverage Index is good for describing the starting point, but, once a man starts restoring, the Foreskin Coverage Index is not adequate.
In 2006 kong1971 posted the RCI on a forum in FRCChat.org. Unfortunately, the original forums on FRCChat.org have disappeared from the Internet. The following is a copy of the original post, and kong1971 has given permission to reprint his post here.
Posted by: kong1971
Posted: Tue Dec 05, 2006 10:29 am
Post subject: The REAL Coverage Index
The Coverage Index is broken. From my experiences restoring and from observing the progress of others, I have come to the opinion that there isn't really anyone who walks around half-covered all day. It seems to me that the skin bunches at the corona and then scoops forward and grabs over the end of the glans, being first a tight, constrictive covering and then gradually loosening into a more natural and comfortable stage before moving on into the later stages of overhang and erect-size covering. The real stages of restoration, in my opinion, are:
RCI-0 ... Super tight cut.
Flaccid: penis has very little skin mobility. Exhibits signs of excess tissue loss, such as stretch marks and hair bearing skin protruding onto the shaft. Shaft skin cannot be pulled over the glans.
Erect:: Hair and scrotum pulled up the shaft to compensate for loss of tissue. No skin mobility. Erections may be uncomfortable or painful. There may be some loss of Erect: size due to lack of skin to accommodate erections. There may be other signs of overly aggressive circumcision, such as bending of the shaft or abnormal tilting of the glans.
Sexual sensation and function may be moderately to severely impacted. There may be dissatisfaction with normal intercourse, frustration, lack of interest in sex, uncomfortable or painful sex and symptoms of erectile dysfunction.
RCI-1 ... Tight cut.
Flaccid: No slack at all when soft, but signs of aggressive circumcision less obvious. Penis appears to have been circumcised "normally", though there may be loss of sensation and function.
Erect:: No skin mobility. Skin cannot be pulled onto the glans, but erections are not painful, and penoscrotal webbing and hair encroachment onto the shaft is less evident. Penis is not abnormally bent or glans tilted.
Sexual sensation and function may be moderately impacted. Individual may experience a sensation of tightness with erections, but not pain. Individual may have a sense of dissatisfaction with sexual sensation. Individual may have mild problems with performance.
RCI-2 ... Medium cut.
Flaccid: Able to pull skin to corona or just over it when soft. Shaft may exhibit mild signs of wrinkling. Little hair of scrotum protruding onto shaft.
Erect:: Some skin mobility. May be able to pull skin to coronal ridge.
Sexual sensation and function may be mildly impacted. Individual may have a sense that sex is lacking or that his love life is lackluster, but there should be only mild signs of negative impact to sensation and function. Many medium-cut restorers report that their love life is perfectly satisfactory.
RCI-3 ... Loose cut.
Flaccid: Skin of the shaft bunches at the coronal ridge and may at times roll over a bit when individual is cold or suffering shrinkage. Little to no hair or scrotum protruding onto shaft.
Erect:: Able to pull skin to corona or just over it when erect. Skin is mobile.
Sexual sensation and function is good. Individual may not feel any sense that his love life is lacking at all. Many loose-cut restorers report that their sex life is very good and that they are not restoring to improve sex life but for aesthetic or philosophical reasons.
RCI-4 ... Intermittent rollover/"The Hump".
Flaccid: Skin spontaneously rolls over corona at times when penis is at smallest flaccid size. Coverage of the glans may last for a few moments before retracting. Skin bunches behind the coronal ridge most of the time. This is reported to be the most frustrating and longest lasting stage in restoring. The shaft skin may appear to have enough length to cover the glans at this stage, but the skin tube must accommodate the increased breadth of the glans before steady coverage commences. Many refer to this stage as "the hump" due to frustration.
Erect:: Restorers begin to notice their sexual techniques changing as increased skin mobility allows for masturbation and other forms of sexplay to include the skin being pulled and held and stroked up over the glans. Although some skin can be pulled onto the erect glans, often the scrotum and hair skin is pulled up at the base by these actions.
Individuals begin to note a dramatic increase in sexual sensation and function at this stage. Restorers experiment with various types of stimulation involving pulling the skin over the glans. Many restorers report improved orgasms and sensitivity at this stage.
Extra Notation: Many restorers report that the transition from RCI-4 to RCI-5 is very time-consuming. It can be easy to feel frustrated at this time. The new looseness of the skin can make progress difficult to gauge. Also, in many instances, the skin must begin to relax outwards before it can roll forward and envelope the glans. Two large factors in the time it takes to transition from RCI-4 to RCI-5 is the size of the glans in proportion to the shaft and the tightness of the original cut. Men who started this process with a large glans in comparison to the thickness of the shaft (a "mushroom head") may find the shaft of their penis growing thicker. Although it may seem for some that progress has slowed or stalled, many changes are occurring at this stage that one may note if he observes his body closely.
RCI-5 ... Partial Coverage.
Flaccid: The restorer will find his foreskin rolling over and staying over the glans for longer periods of time. There seem to be two types of partial coverage. Some men experience a seemingly "almost-instant" full coverage of the glans, but only at their smallest flaccid size. If the restorer's penis becomes partially tumescent or erect, the coverage will snap back behind the coronal ridge. Normal "warm weather" hang will also cause the foreskin to retract. When covered, the muscle fibers of the short foreskin will make the tip of the foreskin sphincter closed. Lack of skin length causes penis to be held close to body, making it appear visually smaller than normal, and restorer may notice his penis feeling constricted by the skin. Other restorers experience a partial covering of the glans, which advances to cover more and more of the glans as he progresses. Physical differences in the shape and the size of the penis, as well as circumcision styles seem to be what causes this difference. However, one cannot consider oneself at the RCI-5 level unless the coverage is consistent and the foreskin can be tugged back down into place reliably if a slip-off occurs. If your foreskin will not stay in place over the glans and continues to roll off, you must consider yourself still an RCI-4, albeit perhaps an advanced one.
Erect:: There is significant looseness of the skin on the shaft. It is likely there will be wrinkling as well. Skin mobility has improved so that the skin can be easily moved over the glans, at least part way, and at later stages can be moved to a position completely covering the glans. The restorer will notice his foreskin feeling increasingly looser and more pliant.
Sexual sensation will continue to improve. The sensation of "gliding" may be recognized at this stage. Orgasms improve further, becoming what many term "full-body" orgasms. The sensation of longer, looser foreskin stimulating the glans when erect is more satisfying than stretching the skin up tightly. Restorer may experience emotional changes: heightened sexual awareness and confidence, stronger sense of passion and bonding with sexual mates. There may even be some mild negative emotional disturbances at the stage, as the restorer attempts to adjust to physical and sensory changes. Sex is becoming a more full, more intimate and more satisfying experience. The restorer may feel himself becoming more "connected" to his body.
RCI-6 ... Full Flaccid Coverage.
Flaccid: Skin stays in place throughout most of the day. The foreskin does not retract at normal-sized hang. Loss of coverage occurs only at semi-erect sizes and above. At this stage, you will notice overhang when your penis is at it's smaller size. Restorer may notice the shape of the glans changing slightly as it becomes accustomed to being enveloped by the foreskin.
Erect:: Wrinkling of the shaft skin when erect. Increased instances of gliding. Skin can easily be pulled over the glans when erect with very little tug on hair and scrotum at the base.
At this stage, restorer may begin to feel "whole" and "restored". Sex continues to improve and feel more natural and satisfying. Gliding becomes more pronounced and stimulating, although other forms of sexual behavior may seem overly-stimulating and rough until the individual adapts to increased sensitivity. The foreskin behaves much better at this stage, and can be easily manipulated up and down over the glans, with fewer unwanted retractions. Without the frenar band to hold the foreskin in place, it may slip from time to time or become stuck behind corona, but can easily be pulled back down over glans. Coverage is spontaneous but slow, even after being purposely retracted. The brain becomes adjusted to having a new body part, and the restorer may feel normal and intact.
Many men consider themselves done at this stage and abandon restoring. Others continue on.
RCI-7 ... Large-size penis coverage.
Skin only retracts with full erections. Coverage stays in place even while hanging low. Overhang with CI-6 size.
RCI-8 ... Partial erect coverage.
Skin will somewhat stay over the corona during erections, but tends to retract. Overhang with CI-5 through CI-7.
RCI-9 ... Full erect coverage.
Skin will stay in place even during full erections.
RCI-10 ... Full erect coverage with overhang.
From the moment I hit coverage, I discovered that my foreskin was either completely covering the glans or fully retracted behind the corona. There is very, very rarely any times of half-coverage. There seems to be a "sweet spot" in my foreskin length at which the skin rolls over and stays in place. As I progress, that "sweet spot" range is widening, allowing the coverage to stay in place the bigger my penis is. Currently, I have a bit of overhanging coverage at my smallest flaccid size (which is about 2.5-3 inches) and decent coverage with a bit of the glans peeking out the tip at my normal flaccid size (3.5" to 4") but my foreskin slips and retracts at my heavy hanging size (4"-5"). When I first started having coverage, my foreskin would clamp down over the end of the glans and hold my penis tight to my body, making it appear smaller, and sometimes even feeling constricted. As I continue, it looks and feels more natural and comfortable.
Has anyone else noticed this same effect?
On the same day as the original post, kong1971 responded to a comment with some clarification of his last paragraph of the original post:
Kong1971's reply: I don't know. Mine stays rather well, as does the foreskins of several other guys I know who are at my level of restoring or further along. The slippage really occurs more often earlier in the process of restoring, when you simply don't have enough skin. There seems to be a "sweet spot" when the skin length versus the length of the penis and glans creates a flipping over point. The muscle fibers in the penis skin will do the rest, constricting the opening of your skin tube so that it is narrower than the diameter of the glans.
The end result is the same as having a ridged band to keep the skin in place, although a restored penis is obviously not going to be snappy fast at returning to coverage after being retracted. Mine doesn't snap back. It just kind of rolls forward. 10 seconds instead of 1... Not such a huge deal. Physiological differences also play a role in this too, I'm sure. But you have to be honest with yourself. Stretched skin length is very much different than relaxed skin length when we're talking about coverage. If your penis is 4" soft, you are going to need approx. 6" of relaxed, unstretched shaft skin for your coverage to traverse from the base to the tip of the glans, fold in, and travel back to the sulcus. With restoring, it's loose, unstretched length that counts. That, to me, is real coverage.