Elrod mold identification

What do the numbers on the side of the Elrod mold reference. I can’t find those numbers in any of the Elrod parts number manuals I checked.
Some of the molds have parts numbers on the face that sticks out when inserted into the machine, as well as numbers on the broad side. Others only have the numbers on the broad side.
I would like to figure out what kind of rule the mold will produce without having to start up the machine.
thanks for any information
Carl Mario Nudi

Log in to reply   6 replies so far

Its been a long time but I think the operation manual has lists of the mold numbers and tells you what they cast.

Some manuals do show the molds, some don’t.
You can download several different Elrod manuals at
and if you get the must-have file
“Elrod Manual, Model E, F & K, James Parrish Draft”
mold info starts at page 79.

Thank you, DickG and Parallel_Imp for the information.
I do have an Elrod Manual that lists the mold numbers and descriptions, and the numbers on the four molds (out or 10) that are on the side of the mold that sticks out when in the machine are listed. But the numbers on the broad side that would be hidden if inserted into the machine mold holder do not correspond to any of the numbers in the manual. They are all 5-digit numbers beginning with either 1 or 7, with none of the nine numbers being the same.
I haven’t checked the James Parrish Draft download yet, so I’m hoping there is more information there.

Do the five-digit numbers look like they were done at the factory, or later? Could they be, say, company inventory numbers?

The numbers that Carl is referring to are definitely factory-original - and definitely Elrod (Ludlow Typograph Co.) rather than a third party. See the attached images for an example. I pulled three examples at random (not all molds have these numbers, of course). All three sayd “ELROD” and PAT APPLIED FOR. One (only one) of the three gave a further patent date: DEC 11 32. That would be US patent 1,476,967 by Arthur H. Hedley, assigned to the Ludlow Typograph Co., for improvements for a mold casting multiple strips. In my case, none of the three molds I examined bore any other numbers - Carl’s molds differ in this respect.

If you look at the Ludlow Salesman’s book for 1962 for Elrod molds, online at:


you’ll see that some molds did have five-digit numbers. See also


for some Ludlow advertising material showing strip styles and numbers (but none five-digit, on quick examination).

David M.

image: elrod-mold-55822-side.jpg


image: elrod-mold-55822-number.jpg


Hi, Parallel_Imp, David MacMillan’s response with photos explains my predicament exactly.

Thank you, David.

The link to the salesman’s book is very helpful. I’m not at the studio today, so I’m not sure of what the numbers are, but some of the five-digit numbers look like they will correspond (just going from my memory, which isn’t ver trustworthy these days).

I had thought I checked all the publications on your wonderful website, David, but I missed the salesman’s book.

I think we can call this query thread closed. Mystery solved.