Locked Re: Southern 390399 "Ortner's 10,000th Rapid Discharge Car" Questions

Robert Graham

That Ortner rapid discharge hopper was a one-of-a-kind commemorative paint livery car, similar to the Pullman-Standard 200,000th car SOU boxcar 550555 that ran around for quite a while in its blue/green/yellow special paint on the SOU. I have a shot of it somewhere. But, be aware that those SOU Ortner rapid discharge N scale model hoppers illustrated are incorrect for SOU. They are 5 bay cars and the SOU Ortner rapid discharge cars were all 4 bay. In HO scale, MDC (I think it was) made the same error.

As to the more mundane stenciling seen on these commemorative painted cars, the SOU 550555 did receive the more common stenciling common to the other SOU cars in this group of P-S exterior post boxcars. I shot it in service that way several times. I doubt there is a set of drawings that reflect that car, other than as-built. I would imagine the commemorative Ortner rapid discharge hopper car was handled in a similar fashion.

Bob Graham  


From: "Ryan Harris"
To: main@SouthernRailway.groups.io
Sent: Friday November 22 2019 3:52:16PM
Subject: [SouthernRailway] Southern 390399 "Ortner's 10,000th Rapid Discharge Car" Questions

I've only seen one photo of the 10,000th Rapid Discharge Car, Southern 390399:


In this photo the car appears to be marked with only the large SOUTHERN name and numbers on the side, along with the tagline "Ortner's 10,000th Rapid Discharge Car". This photo is pretty low resolution, but it doesn't appear to show any of the typical data that appears on other cars in the 390xxx series, such as the consolidated stencil, dimensional data or discharge plunger instructions as seen on adjacent car 390423.

A company called Eastern Seaboard Models made a limited run of N scale models of this car many years ago. Their version of the car includes all the data that would typically be found on the other cars in the series. I asked Eastern Seaboard Models if they still had any of the research materials used to create the artwork or if they could put me in touch with the person who prepared the artwork for them. Here is a website showing a couple photos of their model:


So my questions are:

Did this car receive all the data markings at some point after the publicity photo was taken in 1980?

How long did it remain in this paint scheme?

Ryan Harris
Fort Worth, TX

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