Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

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Urmel
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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Urmel » 11 Nov 2010 16:39

Jon G. wrote:Hi Polar bear, what you are after is a rather tall order. You probably have to go to period sources to get precise figures for numbers of troops lost.
I somehow doubt you'd find that there either.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by vathra » 01 Jan 2012 23:13

Regarding sending of material to DAK via Balkans, where can I find more data?
I guess that Balkan supply line was open during time when Axis held Tobruk or at least Benghazi, and that amount was limited by capacity of those harbours (given by Creveld to around 40k tons per month).
Is it known when first ships went from Greece to North Africa, and when last one departed?

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Urmel
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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Urmel » 01 Jan 2012 23:18

Shipping to Benghazi often went via Patras, and the first ships left in 1941.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by David W » 18 Feb 2016 20:51

John G's monthly breakdown of fuel tonnage arriving is invaluable.

Does anyone have a monthly tonnage breakdown for Axis deliveries to North Africa for ALL supplies?

The figures quoted for each port's capacity is useful, but I'm trying to put it into perspective.
As a for instance; Tripoli had a maximum capacity of 150,000 tonnes per month (@ 5,000 tonnes per day), but on which months between June 1940 & November 1942 was the 150,000 tonnes actually delivered and unloaded.

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 18 Feb 2016 23:31

Check John Ellis 'Brute Force' I recall he had a chart showing material embarked vs material delivered in his section discuss the effects of Malta & other Brit interdiction of Italian cargo ships. Unfortunatly I dont have a copy on my shelf.

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 18 Feb 2016 23:36

There is a Jeff Lesser who hangs out on Con Sim World who went to italian records for this data. He found it was very complete, in Italy & of course in Italian. Not sure what he proved with it but the 500+ post "North African Logistics Monster" discusion is still famous among some ConSimWorld grognards a decade later.

While lurking on a Italian history discussion board I saw some remarks by Italian history afficandos that confirmed the records Jeff drew from did exist.

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by David W » 19 Feb 2016 00:01

Thanks both.

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by jwsleser » 19 Feb 2016 01:57

David

Yes I have the info. What do you need?

Carl

The AS Logistics debate discussed (after the dust settled) whether 1) whether the ports were the problem; 2) was Malta the major factor since the Italians were successful in delivering over 90% of all cargos; 3) could anything be done about it.

What my research uncovered was:

1) the ports weren't the major problem. Plenty of capacity if it could be used.

2) Malta (the UK) didn't sink that much tonnage as a percentage of the total. However, the second-order effect of Malta was increased convoy transit times and higher consumption of oil as routing was used to reduce losses. This created the third -order effect, inability to schedule ships into the ports to maximize port capacity. Instead of a steady flow of shipping to the A.S. ports, shipping arrived in bursts, limiting the number the ship that could unload and leaving ports idle at other times.

3) coastal shipping could have solved the problem. However Malta again precluded effective use of coastal shipping.

When I participated in the debate, my initial position was that Malta wasn't a major factor in the problem due to the high delivery rate. By the end of the debate I recognized that Malta was the significant factor due to the second and third order effects.

Pista! Jeff.
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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Urmel » 19 Feb 2016 07:06

David W wrote:John G's monthly breakdown of fuel tonnage arriving is invaluable.

Does anyone have a monthly tonnage breakdown for Axis deliveries to North Africa for ALL supplies?

The figures quoted for each port's capacity is useful, but I'm trying to put it into perspective.
As a for instance; Tripoli had a maximum capacity of 150,000 tonnes per month (@ 5,000 tonnes per day), but on which months between June 1940 & November 1942 was the 150,000 tonnes actually delivered and unloaded.
USMM 'Dati Statistici' has all the data. I have some here, but it is more expansive in the book:

https://rommelsriposte.com/2008/07/16/s ... th-africa/

You need to keep in mind that the capacity of the harbour was only one factor.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by David W » 19 Feb 2016 07:35

Hi Urmel, Hi Jeff.

Urmel.
Do your figures include deliveries by methods other than the Italian navy? (Such as air or German navy) I ask because the figures quoted are Italian naval figures.

Jeff,
You have saved me the trouble of trying to locate you on Comando Supremo forum.
Assuming Urmel's figures are complete (see above). Then I need the same statistics for the months of June 1940 to June 1941 inclusive.

Thanks to you both.
Kind Regards,
David.

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Urmel
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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Urmel » 19 Feb 2016 08:42

In terms of weight delivery by air is just going to be noise. It's not a meaningful amount.
The enemy had superiority in numbers, his tanks were more heavily armoured, they had larger calibre guns with nearly twice the effective range of ours, and their telescopes were superior. 5 RTR 19/11/41

The CRUSADER Project - The Winter Battle 1941/42

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Dili » 19 Feb 2016 18:03

Santoro lists for all war sectors from 10 June 1940 to 10 May 1943.

44000 flights
580000 persons
40000t cargo
210 transport aircraft lost
430 crew missing or killed.

Air transport to and from Libya 1942 by SAS - Servizi Aerei Speciali ( the independent transport arm which was separated from Squadra level transports and unit level transports)

flights: 13355
military : 142786
civilians: 43969
mail: 1098t
engines:400
torpedoes: 112
various: 10781t

Air transport to and from Libya 1941 by SAS (February to December)

persons(civilians+military) IN: 17658, OUT:23030
cargo:IN: 2177t OUT:1161t
Last edited by Dili on 19 Feb 2016 18:14, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by Dili » 19 Feb 2016 18:12

David W wrote:John G's monthly breakdown of fuel tonnage arriving is invaluable.

Does anyone have a monthly tonnage breakdown for Axis deliveries to North Africa for ALL supplies?

The figures quoted for each port's capacity is useful, but I'm trying to put it into perspective.
As a for instance; Tripoli had a maximum capacity of 150,000 tonnes per month (@ 5,000 tonnes per day), but on which months between June 1940 & November 1942 was the 150,000 tonnes actually delivered and unloaded.
I don't have per month statistics but the period more cargo was sent was February-June 1941 with 89000t/month
January-June 1942 was next with 73000t/month.

This is for all sea transport to Libya not just for Tripoli.

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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by jwsleser » 19 Feb 2016 19:38

David

It was easier to scan the applicable charts. Source is Dati Statistici USMM 1972 tavoli LII a and LII b (pages 130-133).

Months are down the left, who the cargo was for across the top, immediately underneath is type of cargo (liquid fuels or other cargo). The upper number is total shipped, the lower number is cargo delivered.

I hope this helps!

Pista! Jeff
Cargo Libya.pdf
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Re: Axis shipping in the Mediterranean

Post by jwsleser » 19 Feb 2016 20:02

Andreas
You need to keep in mind that the capacity of the harbour was only one factor.
True, but when you examine the entire supply issue, the issue of Malta as I outlined above was the critical factor. Everything else is solvable once Malta is resolved. The problem of Malta magnified the problems of fuel and trucks to greater extent than they actually were. These issues, already stretched, now had to compensate for the problem created by Malta. The effect was synergistic.

Don't forget that Greece and Russia soaked off a significant amount of material from A.S. Greece was particularly critical as the A.S. ports were vastly underutilized at a time when it was almost too easy to sail convoys.

Pista! Jeff
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