From: Old Los Angeles pre-1960
In regards to the fuel shortage, from Bragadin, pages 188-191;
"The Italian Navy calculated it would take 200,000 tons of fuel per month to obtain complete freedom of movement at sea, However, with limitations progressively imposed by lack of sufficient supplies, the navy had been forced to accept a consumption factor of one half of that originally foreseen. 100,000 tons a month, therefore, was the basic figure advanced in the negotiations with Germany for supplies after the Italian war reserve had been exhausted by the summer of 1941. In actual practice, despite the agreement with Germany and the continued pressure of Supermarina, the shipments of fuel were always less than and frequently far below the necessary minimum."
"In spite of agreements made with the Germans following the meeting at Merano, the Italian Navy received scarcely 38,810 tons of fuel oils during the second quarter of 1941. Consequently it was necessary to introduce new limitations on naval movements. Consumption, which in the first quarter of 1941 had been 348,230 tons, was reduced in the second quarter to 297,327, and in the third quarter to 266,865 tons. This last figure ment an average consumption of less than 90,000 tons a month. No further reductions were bearable - except at the cost of intolerable limitation on operational activity. In spite of all requests, however, only 64,703 tons arrived during the summer quarter of 1941, even as the pre-war reserve was running out. As a result of the dwindling fuel supply such a crisis developed at the end of September that the operations of the Italian Fleet were cut down to a fearfully low level for almost two months, precisely during the period of the first battle of the convoys when it was most necessary that the fleet enjoy maximum freedom of movement."
He goes on documenting a fuel shortage situation that gets progressively worse (though I won't type it all out) - and they eventually were reduced to retiring capital ships and cruisers - as they have to drain their fuel bunkers to provide fuel for the corvettes and other convoy escorts later in the war.
I know Japan faced a serious fuel shortage due to tanker losses and therefore had to station large fleet units not in Japan but in the SRA where the fuel supply was, but I don't recall that they had to retire major fleet units just to provide some operating fuel for DE's and the like...certainly not for the majority of the war.
< Message edited by Big B -- 12/8/2007 11:24:23 PM >