Re: Soo Line boxcar questions

Dennis Storzek

Dennis, can you provide some photos (or links to them) that would clarify the
difference between
"Boxcar Block," "Boxcar block II," and the Venus Bold versions?

I'm fairly sure I have the last firmly in mind, but I would like to be more
about the first


What a pain to find pix. I never knew there were so many pictures of Soo Line covered hoppers in existence. It seems color slides weren't invented until all the good stuff was gone :-( The Soo Line Historical & Technical Society used to have a info sheet for their "Technicals" line of decals that illustrated all the changes to boxcar lettering step by step, but it's not on the web any longer.

Here is the original "boxcar block", introduced in 1951. note the sloping center bar in the S.. This is one of the 1953 home built cars.

Here is the second iteration of the "boxcar block", introduced about 1959, perhaps on this series of cars. Note the bar in the S is parallel to the ground.

Here is the Venus Bold lettering introduced on locomotives in 1962. This insulated boxcar with DF loaders was built at North Fond du Lac in 1956

Here is an example of what started this thread; the car was built in 1940, and is still in its original paint in 1960.

As built, the herald had a black background, which has almost completely weathered away. However, I can see enough vestiges of dark color around the lettering in the herald to feel confident that this is the original paint, not a repaint in the 1948 scheme.

Now, what are the chances that a car built four years earlier would still be in it's original paint four years later?

Dennis Storzek
Big Rock, IL

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