TM Numbering Specification

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Signal Corps Technical Manuals, TM-11 Series

Technical Manuals originated around 1940 as a consolidation of earlier Radio Pamphlets such as:

  • (NOTE- unfortunately not all operators manuals are TM's or even under the signal corps system. evidently the coast artillery published several radar manuals under their "4" designation.)
  • FM 4-95 Seacoast Artillery: Service of Radio Set SCR-296-A
  • FM 4-96 Seacoast Artillery: Service of Radio Set SCR-582
  • FM 4-97 Service of the Radio Set SCR-682-A
  • FM 4-143 Antiaircraft Artillery Field Manual Service of Height Finder SCR-547
  • FM 4-144 Antiaircraft Artillery: Service of Radio Set SCR-584
  • FM 4-146 Antiaircraft Artillery: Service of Radio Set SCR-545
  • FM 4-176 Service of Radio Set SCR-268.
  • (Note The 3 or 4 digit specific equipment identifier always begins at 200 because 199 and below are reserved for FM's.

TM 11-201, the earliest known, is entitled "Aircraft Radio SCR-134" and was formerly documented TR-1201-5. Initially, the manuals were not always grouped by equipment category, as the need did not then exist. With the explosion of equipment in World War Two, groupings soon became necessary. Many of the earlier numbers were "recycled" when the equipment for which they were originally designated became obsolete. There was also an inclusion of early 1950s equipment among much older units. In some cases, an A or B suffix was added to an original number while updating. But in general, a new number would be issued, especially in the latter 1950s. In 1958, a new FSN (Federal Stock Number) procedure was instituted, which more accurately defined the item in question and linked its TM 11- number to its supply number.

  • (note The lowest number in the system that replaced the TR's (Technical Regulation) is TM 11-200. I don't know for certain that it had been issued earlier on the SCR-AA ...AE-183 (probably but maybe retroactively on a previously un-numbered manual) but it is the lowest number in the short number system. The edition that I have is dated 10/21/42 and covers SCR-AF ... AN-183 and SCR-AL ... AN-283. R. Downs

In Mid-1958, the FSN Series appeared, consisting of a four-digit number, followed by a three or four digit model number of the apparatus in question, then a two-digit number defining the scope of the manual. A P-Suffix indicates that a Parts List is involved. The system commenced with a new category number, 5805 though a few instances of lower numbers are known.

  • (Note Suffix "P" doesn't mean that a parts list is involved. It means that the manual ONLY contains a parts list. Whether the list is just a list or is an Illustrated list cannot be determined by the TM number. Suffix "&P" means that in addition to whatever else the manual contains, it also contains a parts list. So a manual whose number ends in "-15&P" is directly equivalent to the Short Number manuals published before about 1946. It in almost all cases is the only manual published on the particular equipment. R. Downs

Example: TM 11-5805-201-12&P is for Telephone Set TA-312/PT. It contains Operating Instructions, local Maintenance Procedures, and a Parts List.

Another example:

TM 11-5815-283-35
TM Technical Manual
11 Signal Equipment
5815 Teletype and Facsimile Equipment
283 AN/FGC-70X
35 Field and Depot Maintenance
P Repair Parts and Special Tools

The Chart below Explains the Designators

Technical Manual Designations
Manual Type
TB - Technical Bulletin
TM - Technical Manual
TO - Technical Order
Equipment Designation
1- Army Air Forces.
2- Cavalry.
4- Coast Artillery Corps.
5- Corps of Engineers.
6- Field Artillery.
7- Infantry.
8- Medical Department.
9- Ordnance Department
10- Quartermaster Corps.
11- Signal Corps.
12- Adjutant General's Department.
13- Inspector General's Department.
14- Finance Department.
15- Judge Adovcate General's Department.
16- Corps of Chaplains.
17- Armored Force.
18- Tank Destroyer.
19- Military Police.
20- Msc.
Class of Equipment
5411 - Prefabricated and Portable Shelters
5805 - Telephone and Telegraph Equipment
5810 - Scrambler Equipment for above services
5815 - Teletype and Facsimile Equipment
5820 - Radio and Television Communications Equipment (except airborne)
5821 - Radio and Television Communications Equipment (Airborne)
5825 - Radio Navigation Equipment (except Airborne)
5826 - Radio Navigation Equipment (Airborne)
5830 - Intercommunications & Public Address Systems (except Airborne)
5831 - Intercommunications & Public Address Systems (Airborne)
5835 - Sound Recording and Reproducing Equipment
5840 - Radar Equipment (Except Airborne)
5841 - Radar Equipment (Airborne)
5845 - Underwater Sound Equipment
5895 - Miscellaneous Communications Equipment
5985 - Antennas, Waveguide & Related Equipment
6115 - Power Supplies
6605 - Compass Equipment
6615 - Helicopter Electronics
6625 - Test Equipment
6655 - Visual Radiation Equipment
6660 - Meteorological Equipment
6665 - Atomic Radiation (Radiac) Equipment
6695 - Criminology Equipment
6720 - Photographic Equipment
6730 - Projectors, Still & Movie
6740 - Film & Print Processing Equipment
6760 - Aircraft Cameras & Accessories
6780 - Photographic Equipment
6940 - Training Equipment
7440 - Data Processing Equipment
7450 - Special Audio Equipment
Specific Equipment Designator
Indicator of Coverage
10 - Operators Manual
12 - Operator and Organizational Maintenance Manual
14 - Operator, Organizational Maintenance & Field Maintenance
15 - Operator, Organizational Direct Service, and General Service
20 - Organizational Maintenance (Second Echelon)
24 - Organizational, Direct Service, and General Service Maintenance
25 - Organizational, Field and Deport Maintenance
34 - Direct Service and General Service Maintenance Manual
35 - Field and Deport Maintenance
50 - Calibration Procedure
P - Repair Parts & Special Tools

Signal TM General Categories

Mainly complete radio sets (SCR), including DF eqp.
Specialties, as indicated below:
Telegraph and Telephone Equipment
Teletypewriter Equipment
Line Construction and Miscellaneous Wire Equipment
Cryptographic Equipment
Visual Equipment
Mixed equipment, plus instructional texts
Photographic Equipment
Pigeon Equipment, Miscellaneous
Meteorological Equipment
Miscellaneous Equipment & Training Manuals
Radio Sets, Aircraft
Radio Sets, Aircraft (including DF)
Radio Sets, inc. Mobile
Interphone & Audio Equipment (Ground)
Training Manuals
Power Supplies
1000 - 1099
Miscellaneous Air & Radar Equipment
1100 - 1199
Radar Sets
1200 - 1299
Miscellaneous Ground Radar Equipment
1300 - 1399
Technical Operation Manuals (Radar)
1400 - 1499
General Maintenance Manuals (Radar)
1500 - 1599
Service Manuals (Radar)
1600 - 1699
Field Service Procedures Manuals
1700 - 1799
1800 - 1899
Higher Echelon Repair Manuals
1900 - 1999
Telephone Equipment
Telephone Systems and Centrals
Teletypewriter Equipment
Line Construction and Miscellaneous Wire Equipment
Test Equipment
Antennas and Test Equipment
Installation of Equipment (small selection)
Installation Manuals

NOTE: The entire TM 11-4000 Series is devoted to Maintenance

Repairs of Radio Equipment
Repairs to Telephone Equipment
Repairs to Telephone Systems
Repairs to Telephone and Telegraph Terminals
Repairs to Power Equipment
Repairs to Miscellaneous Equipment
5000 Series
Antennas and RF Test Equipment
Misc. Electronic Equipment
Photography-Audio Visual (small selection)
Mostly Audio Equipment

Parts or SIGs

under the Signal Corps provision system, the parts manuals mirror the Ordnance Dept. system.

  • SNL (Standard Nomenclature Lists)
  • WD CAT. ORD 1 Introduction to Ordnance catalog
  • WD CAT. ORD 2 Index to Ordnance supply catalog
  • WD CAT. ORD 3 list of items for issue to troops, posts, camps, and stations.
  • WD CAT. ORD 4 Allowances of expendable supplies
  • WD CAT. ORD 5 Stock list of items
  • WD CAT. ORD 5-1 Numerical index of manufactures part numbers, and drawing numbers
  • WD CAT. ORD 6 Tools, and tool sets
  • WD CAT. ORD 7 Organizational Maintenance Allowances.
  • WD CAT. ORD 8 Field and Depot Maintenance Allowances.
  • WD CAT. ORD 9 List of all service parts.
  • WD CAT. ORD 10 tool load, and supply guide
  • WD CAT. ORD 11 Ammunition
  • WD CAT. ORD 12 Obsolete general supplies
  • WD CAT. ORD 13 Parts common to two or more major items
  • WD CAT. ORD 14-1 Interchangeability lists for tanks, and vehicles of related chassis.
  • WD CAT. ORD 14-2 Interchangeability list
    • Vol. 1 Interchangeability list for ordnance, general purpose and combat vehicles (except full track vehicles) group 0-0800
    • Vol. 2 Interchangeability list for ordnance, general purpose and combat vehicles (except full track vehicles) group 0900-2500
  • WD CAT. ORD 15-1 (Ordnance numbers) Cross reference list of ordnance part, and stock numbers (ten volumes)
  • WD CAT. ORD 15-2 (stock numbers) (ten volumes)
  • WD CAT. ORD 16 Captured Foreign Material


  • WD CAT. SIG 1 Introduction to catalog
  • WD CAT. SIG 2 Index to supply catalog
  • WD CAT. SIG 3 list of items for issue to troops, posts, camps, and stations.
  • WD CAT. SIG 4 Allowances of expendable supplies
  • WD CAT. SIG 5 Stock list of items
  • WD CAT. SIG 6 Tools, and tool sets
  • WD CAT. SIG 7 Organizational Maintenance Allowances.
  • WD CAT. SIG 8 Field and Depot Maintenance Allowances.
  • WD CAT. SIG 9 none
  • WD CAT. SIG 10-1 fixed plant maintenance lists- instructions, and index.
  • WD CAT. SIG 10-2 fixed plant maintenance lists- factor table, MFR. code No. list abv.
  • WD CAT. SIG 10-3 fixed plant maintenance lists- equipment for which maintenance parts will not be furnished