locked need help: Southern low side gon lettering 1929

A&Y Dave in MD

Hi all,

I need your interpretive eye help.  I'm going to create a Ghost decal for the gondola pictured below. Other than one rib off (8 instead of 9) the Ertl model is almost perfect for this number series (add a .005 gusset at each corner top and some archer rivets and choose some Yarmouth twist stirrups and other than the missing side rib, it's really close.  Yes, the Speedwitch Media 1937 gon (of which I have a couple of kits) may have the ribs, but I got 3 Ertl gons for $16 on eBay recently so I can live without the rib for the price difference in developing a fleet for my layout.

The photo is a blow up from the Duke University construction photos of 1928-1929. You can get the full photo at
https://repository.duke.edu/dc/dukeconstruction/19290301WC0174 This is the West Campus Progress Picture #174.  This photo is dated 1929 and the gondola built date is '24.  I'm going to say this gon made it to '34 without repainting, just usual reweighing and repacking.   I'll make a simplified '34 scheme later, but I like the way the data are laid out here.   So any help would be appreciated.  There are several similar series Southern gondolas as well as other cars from other railroads in this photo series if you're not familiar with it. Attached are part of two lettering diagrams from the Southern, one for 1921 and one for 1928 (I don't have a gondola specific lettering diagram for that time). They may give you more of a clue than I got.   Anyway, on to my help request!

First panel from left.  No idea what that tiny writing next to the grab is, but I'm guessing it might be the "United States Safety Appliances Standard" lettering found on both the '21 and '28 lettering guides.

Second panel.  I'm comfortable that the CAPY has a bracket for the top row "958 CU FT" and the next row "100,000 LBS"   as I saw those values in Note K for an ORER entry for this series of gondolas and while the bracket is not in the box car lettering diagram, I can see it here and I will include it.  But the next line should be "LT WT 40000" and I cannot tell if that is just some scuff marks or is there something else stencilled there.   I'm confident the next line is "LOAD LIMIT 129000".  That tiny writing below could be repack data.  I don't think it is chalk marks.  Looks too regular. Guesses?

Third panel.  I'm trying to figure out the small lettering above the rivets here, but no clue unless that is repack data (but they all cannot be repack data).  About all I could even guess is that bottom right corner is "GA" or "KA".   Clearly under the rivets is "BUILT 7-1924"

Any suggestions or help from other sources would be much appreciated!

Dave Bott


Sent from David Bott's desktop pc