Friday, 12 January 2018

4 CMBG Tactical Callsigns and Vehicle Markings - various resources --- UPDATED 15 Jan

Howdy folks,

I recently received a question regarding vehicle markings on Canadian Leopards from my previous post of the start of my Leopard C1's  for my Royal Canadian Dragoons (RCD) squadron.  While I have spent some time around Canadian military equipment and vehicles, like any other nation, Canadian markings have adapted, adjusted, and changed many times over the years...subtle changes and not so subtle.

Starting with my Flames of War Canadian tank company, I carried out a lot of research to satisfy my OCD and make sure I was reflecting some historical this end, I discovered the Armoured Acorn website and the dozens of Order Of Battle docs as well as the dozens of Vehicle Markings docs and representations.

Giving full credit to the Armoured Acorn...unfortunately that website is no longer are the docs for Canadian Vehicles with 4 CMBG and also Canadian Army circa 1990's-2000's in Canada:

Canadian M113's - general

Canadian Vehicle Markings - 4 CMBG

M113's and Lynx - 4 CMBG

Canadian Vehicle Markings - general, early and later Brigade Markings

Canadian Vehicle Markings - general, continued

Canadian Vehicle Markings - M113, Leopard, M109 - in Canada

For my current Team Yankee run...I have also used the Modern Canadian Vehicle forum as there are many discussion threads on specific Canadian vehicles and units...and I have also gone and dug up my old Battle School notebooks (couldn't believe that I still had them) as well, I have also leaned on buddies and family for pics and advice from their time with the Brigade.

From the Modern Canadian Vehicle forum:

Royal Canadian Dragoons

A Squadron Headquarters element:
Officer Commanding vehicle marking 1A - tac callsign (c/s) 19 (one-niner)
Battle Captain - 1B
Dozer - 16 (Sergeant or Master-Corporal
Liaison Officer - 19E in Lynx

1 Troop (4 x Leopard MBT/Troop)
Troop Leader - 11 (Lt or 2Lt)
Senior NCO - 11A (Warrant Officer or Sergeant)
Sergeant - 11B
Master-Corporal - 11C

2 Troop          3 Troop          4 Troop
12                   13                  14
12A                13A               14A
12B                13B               14B
12C                13C               14C

From my buddy Pete (ex-PPCLI and gunner):

PPCLI (1984-1988) - the regiment had 3-4 companies numbered from A to D; each company had 3 platoons numbered in sequence...however first platoon of second company was not "1" platoon, it carried on the sequence (as indicated below)...each platoon had 3 sections numbered 1 to 3.

Alpha Company: 19 is the Officer Commanding (OC); 19C the Company Sergeant-Major (CSM); 19D and 19E Company Quartermaster (CQ)
A Coy, 1 Platoon: 11 Platoon Commander; 11A is 1 Section; 11B is 2 Section; 11C is 3 Section
A Coy, 2 Platoon: 12; 12A; 12B; 12C
A Coy, 3 Platoon: 13; 13A; 13B; 13C

Bravo Company: 29 is the OC; 29C is the CSM; 29D and 29E is CQ
B Coy, 4 Platoon: 21 Plt Cmdr; 21A 1 Sect; 21B 2 Sect; 21C 3 Sect
B Coy, 5 Platoon: 22 Plt Cmdr; 22A 1 Sect; 22B 2 Sect; 22C 3 Sect
B Coy, 6 Platoon: 23 Plt Cmdr; 23A 1 Sect; 23B 2 Sect; 23C 3 Sect

Charlie Company: 39 is the OC; 39C is the CSM; 39D and 39E is CQ
C Coy, 7 Platoon: 31 Plt Cmdr; 31A 1 Sect; 31B 2 Sect; 31C 3 Sect
C Coy, 8 Platoon: 32 Plt Cmdr; 32A 1 Sect; 32B 2 Sect; 22C 3 Sect
C Coy, 9 Platoon: 33 Plt Cmdr; 33A 1 Sect; 33B 2 Sect; 33C 3 Sect

Combat Support Company: 59 is the OC
Mortar Platoon: 51 was Headquarters element
Mortar Group 1: 52 callsigns
Mortar Group 2: 53 c/s
Pioneer Platoon: 54 c/s
Armoured Defence: 55 c/s
Recce Platoon: 56 c/s
Spare number: 57 c/s...for some time, this also included extra armoured defence elements

Info from my buddy Jay at the OMG club:

"I thought I'd stick my oar in since one or another of the 2PPCLI tracks was my home from '85-'88 in the Coy HQ would be 19A (Coy 2i/c I think). I forget who 19B is. The CQ vehicles were 2 1/2 ton trucks.
Delta Coy (call sign 4) arrived in the summer of '85...

Delta Company: 49 is the OC; 49A is the 2ic; 49C is the CSM; 49D and 49E is CQ
D Coy, 10 Platoon: 41 Plt Cmdr; 41A 1 Sect; 41B 2 Sect; 41C 3Sect
D Coy, 11 Platoon: 42 Plt Cmdr; 42A; 42B; 42C
D Coy, 12 Platoon: 43 Plt Cmdr; 43A; 43B; 43C's what I remember about mortars:
51A was HQ M577; 51A was a Lynx (platoon 2ic, Lt, command the Lynx responsible for recce and baseplate positions).  Each group had 4 x M113s and 1 x M548 ammo vehicle. (I sat in group2)
Mortar Group 1 and 2:
52 and 53 (Group comd - WO, and 1 mortar and crew)
52A and 53A (Line Cpl and 1 mortar and crew)
52B and 53B (Mortar and crew)
52C and 53C (Mortar and crew plus the Command Post Operator the guy who did the math and stuff so the mortar rounds landed in the general area of where the MFC wanted them)
52D and 53D - the ammo M548
From about '87 the Charlie vehicle would be one of the M113A2's with the external fuel tanks. When we got them (one per mortar group), they took a while to settle into being the Group CP vehicle, which is probably why Barry Beldam (Armoured Acorn) shows one as 52B. They never got painted in a camouflage pattern, remaining the base green at least as long as we had them in 2PPCLI."

From other folks on various forums:

"Combat support company housed anti-tank platoon (Armoured Defence)...this comprised 16 x M113s in 4 groups subdivided into 2 sections each.  Recce platoon also housed the battalion snipers"

I think that covers all that I have in my notes...the beauty of this is that thanks to my notes, I realize a little late that I made an error with my RCD' I'm off to fix my err and remove callsign 11D from my troop.

Please let me know if the links are troublesome.

Cheers and take care.


  1. Thanks for this!! Great stuff.

  2. Handy information to know - should I ever get my own Canadian Cold War going again! Thanks for sharing!

    1. You're welcome Tim...ill have to get a few pics of my battle school notes and get the arty regiment callsigns.


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  4. Hi Stan,
    Great stuff. I wrote a long reply with some info about 2PPCLI callsigns of the era, but realized I'm not sure what the blog etiquette is. I was in 2PPCLI from '85-'90 (Germany '85-'88). I can send you a bit of info if you want, especially about Mortar Platoon (my home from '86-'88). I should have your email in the OMG list.
    By the way, I think you have typo in the notes above. You listed RSM in the company listings, and it should be Company Sgt Maj (CSM).

    1. Hey Jay,

      Thanks for the c/s info...I don't think I realized you were former for etiquette, I think all was good so no worries there. Any extra info you would have would be outstanding...and yeah, I totally typo'ed and brainfarted, lol...I've read those notes at least a dozen times this past year and totally missed the RSM vice CSM. Thanks for keeping me honest, lol...

      I will update and also include c/s info from your previous comment.

      See you at the club!

    2. Updated with your mortar platoon details and made some edits to the CSM c/s's...Thanks Jay!

    3. Happy to help Stan. What sort of force structure are you planning to model in the end?

      I have to admit I've been tempted to dip into TY, now that the distance of time has removed me from my previous life as a speed bump on the Soviet drive to the Rhine.

      If I remember any other c/s or unique paint details I'll let you know.

      Make sure you paint any Patricia dismounts with cam paint on their faces!

    4. Thanks the moment I'm thinking of a squadron of Leopards, a battery of M109's, and a couple platoons of infantry with some support options.

      Will do on the cam, lol...cheers.

  5. Stanley,

    Great stuff! HAve you had any luck finding 15mm Decals for 4 CMBG? I'm having no luck at al



    1. Hey Greg,

      Sorry for not seeing this sooner...I went the same route as many in this case, I bought the 1:87 decals from TL-Modelbau.

      Good luck.