Using Advanced Search

Advanced Search is similar to Basic Search, but has additional capabilities to help limit searches by finding files of interest within a specific TCI Library category, or using only the Title or Description text.

It uses commands that are different than many operating systems and internet search engines.  Please read the following and note the known issues at the end of this article.  Features details that are common with Basic Search are not repeated here.  See "Using Basic Search."

HINT: Click on the 'Print" icon on the right to open a text copy of this page in a new window for reference. Then click on Advanced Search to view the keyword entry box and try some searches.

To start an Advanced Search:

  • Click on Search / Advanced Search on the Menu Bar or click the Search Document icon (magnifying glass) if visible.
  • Enter your keyword or keywords in the “Search keywords” box.
  • If desired, limit or re-order the search results using the drop down boxes.
  • Click on "Search."

Keywords are matched to any word in the title and/or description.  These are added by TCI Library staff. Advanced Search does not search the contents of a file.

The keyword string including spaces between keywords is currently limited to 40 characters.

Each keyword must include two or more characters. One character keywords are ignored.

WARNING! If Advanced Search returns more than 50 documents that match your keywords, you are not seeing all the drelevant ocuments in the Library.  Use more keywords or a category search to limit the number of matches.

 HINT: You do not need to enter keywords as complete words.  You can use any substring of two or more contiguous characters.  (e.g. For "Western Electric" try "wes ele" or "ster tric" etc.)  This trick allows you to get the essence of more keywords with less typing and while staying within the maximum character limit.


By default, an Advanced Search is: all categories, alphabetical, all words and both title and description. To change the scope or order, use the following entries on the request form:

 “Select category” – Use the drop down box to select a single Library category from the list.  These are usually groups of related documents such as catalogs from a particular manufacturer, or technical reference documents (BSPs, GSPs, etc) on a related topic.  This is very handy if you know the most likely BSP division and section for a good result.

 “Ordering” -- Use the drop down box to change the order of the displayed results. Alphabetical may be most useful for general research. 

 “Search by” -- If you enter multiple keywords, the default is to return results containing any of the keywords. This may be limited by using the options in the drop down box (see examples).

 “Search where” -- The default is to match keywords with words in both Name and Description. To select either, click on the one you want. To select both, hold down the Control or Shift key on your keyboard while clicking on the non-selected (white) entry.

Name is the title of the found result (highlighted in blue).
Description is the text below the name.


Search Examples: (Keywords underlined for clarity.)

 Keyword: -000-000

  •  Find documents with "-000-000" -- which are index BSPs 

Keyword: index

  • Find documents with "index" in the title and/or description. 

Multiple Keywords: Bell System

  • Search by “any words” to find any document with either bell or system.
  • Search by “all words” to find any document with both bell and system.
  • Search by “exact phrase” to find only documents with “bell system.”

 If you don't find the BSP you're looking for...

 ... try looking up a BSP number in one of the index documents and search for the full BSP number.  The titles and descriptions may not contain the search keywords you're using.  You can also try using the Google Search, which may find keywords within the files.

... try a different form of an abbreviation -- for example, WE, W.E. or WEco.

... try the Google Search.

Since this site is a work in progress, recommendations for additional keywords for any document are always welcome.

Please use the "Contact Us" link to send corrections, suggestions and additions. 


Known search issues

Searches may fail if strange characters are entered into the search box.
This can happen when using copy-and-paste to move text from an html email to the search box.  In some cases, the characters are not visible, so you won't know they're there!  If a search returns 0 results, try typing in the search string and restart the search.

Recent Contributors

Thanks for new documents from David Gruger, Jeff Lamb, Walt Aydelotte, Dennis Hock, Steve Flocke, Paul Wills, Sam Etler, Fred Haynes, John Novack, Clint Gilliland, Steve Cichorsky and Karl Brose.

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