Cjet, I might not have been clear enough on the last post, the estimate was for 114144. At any rate, there are probably as many methods to read a bad tag as there are folks on this forum. On steel tags I use a small brass brush or some kind of plastic based scrub pad. The main thing is to try not to remove (or smear) any more of the base material than is already gone. Sometimes you can highlight the numbers by rubbing them with a marker or something and wiping off the excess. The best viewing method I have found is a good magnifying glass and a flashlight (not necessarily a bright one) and move the light and the magnifier at different angles until you can read each number. They can almost always be read with enough patience. I've included this photo of a pretty bad steel tag from a 43 B. It's 140268. Once you know what it is you can almost read it in the pic, but otherwise it looks hopeless when you just look at the tag. Hope this helps.
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