Convoy Size

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Macquarrie1999
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Convoy Size

Post by Macquarrie1999 »

I am playing as the Allies against the Japanese. Right now I have been making my convoys large enough to dock in the port they are headed to, but I was wondering if it is better to just run massive convoys instead. Right now I can only fit one escort per convoy, but so far submarine attacks against my convoys have been very rare.
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RangerJoe
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by RangerJoe »

ORIGINAL: Macquarrie1999

I am playing as the Allies against the Japanese. Right now I have been making my convoys large enough to dock in the port they are headed to, but I was wondering if it is better to just run massive convoys instead. Right now I can only fit one escort per convoy, but so far submarine attacks against my convoys have been very rare.

That depends. Please describe the situation and what you are hauling plus where it is going.
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Lowpe
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Lowpe »

I take it you are playing the AI...then my advice is to experiment -- which is really the heart of the game.

If you are playing a pbem game, then you probably want to think about it a bit. Large convoys, really large ones, might set off intelligence reports and actually increase some risk especially if it can be intercepted by an astute IJN player.

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HansBolter
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by HansBolter »

Size above 15 ships increases the chance of collisions.

Don't build huge supply TFs with ships freshly commissioned with crew experience in the 17/15 range.

I like to build what I refer to as Sup Divs consisting of 40 Liberty ships with 4-8 escorts.

I tried doing this once as soon as I had stored up 40 Liberty ships at San Fran.

The first Sup Div didn't make it past Pearl before collisions forced me to limp several ships into Pearl for repairs.

That was when I finally bothered to look at crew experience.

I then split them up into TFs with 14 Liberty ships and 1 escort to ply back and forth between SF and Pearl for 6 months to gain enough crew experience to be able to handle their ships in larger TFs.
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Macquarrie1999
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Macquarrie1999 »

The main convoys I have are moving supplies from SF to Sydney, Cape to Sydney, and Cape to Madras. I also have tanker convoys moving fuel from LA to Sydney and Abadan to Perth.
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Macquarrie1999
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Macquarrie1999 »

Once you to get their experience up to you put them in larger convoys though? I have been doing it the way I have doing thinking that if they can dock they will be able to unload faster and therefore deliver more supplies over the long run.
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HansBolter
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by HansBolter »

I'm really referring to the mid to late game situation where you need to be moving supply in the Millions.

My described Sup Divs with 40 Liberty ships carry 250k supply and 20k fuel in each run.

Last game I had 12 Sup Divs hauling supply from San Fran to the Home Islands in '45-'46 and still didn't have adequate supply for my needs. That's 3 Million supply on the move at any given time.

In the early game most ships have been at sea for some time and crew experiences are not as low as for the mass produced ships rolling out in '43.

During the early period it makes sense to tailor TF and ship size to port capacity.

Later, you will be moving so much supply you can't afford to dilly over inefficiency, but you do need the ship's crews to be able to handle the ships in large TFs.
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RangerJoe
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by RangerJoe »

Also, if you are going to small ports from your regional supply hubs then you will want small TFs and if they are going in harm's way they will need more escorts.
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Treetop64
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Treetop64 »

ORIGINAL: Macquarrie1999

I am playing as the Allies against the Japanese. Right now I have been making my convoys large enough to dock in the port they are headed to, but I was wondering if it is better to just run massive convoys instead. Right now I can only fit one escort per convoy, but so far submarine attacks against my convoys have been very rare.

Dependinding on how deep you are into the campaign, the composition of your convoys will vary. Early on you'll have to be very flexible, and you will not be able to afford to have escorts on every convoy. In fact, most of your escorts will be unescorted. One escort per convoy is all but pointless. Best to save multiple escorts only for your most important convoys, the rest will have to go naked.

By late '43 you will be accumulating more ships, planes, people, and everything else than you'll know what to do with. Setting up nice and neat convoys in exactly the composition you want, hauling 100k to 200k tons or more, will not be a problem. Until then, however, you'll have to wing it.
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HansBolter
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by HansBolter »

One escort per Tf is not pointless.

Any escort, even one without an ASW capability, is better than none.

Submarines will target escorts a high percentage of the time if they are present.

Escorts, normally being more maneuverable than most transport ships, get missed a high percentage of the time.

If said escort has an ASW capability, it may attack the sub.

One is always better than none.
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Nomad
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Nomad »

I also believe that having at least one escort ship will keep the sub from attacking on the surface.
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Ian R »

I do something similar to Hans- they convoys start at 6-8 ships plus an escort or two, and get bigger as the game progresses, and assets multiply. Even surface vessels with no ASW can provide escort against subs making surface gun attacks. If they land any sort of hit on a sub it might submerge and beat a retreat.

Two things that are useful is, first, to establish an air cover corridor from Xmas island, down the chain via Starbuck Is, to Pago Pago, along the line south of Fiji and eventually all the way to Brisbane. If you keep your TFs in the corridor, the air activity makes the subs submerge and they can't see your ships to attack them; also, when the subs are detected, the convoy will avoid them if on normal or safe routing. As a bonus, any surface raiders tend to retreat from the air threats.

Second, build Cochin into a 9 port ASAP, so you don't have to go around Ceylon to Madras (and turn Male into a flying boat base to get air coverage almost to the edge of the map).
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Nomad
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Nomad »

I misread something
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Macquarrie1999
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Macquarrie1999 »

I already have my air corridor set up, too bad I don't get more PBYs, I could double the amount I have and still want more. Building up Cochin is a good idea.

For the Abadan-Perth route should I try and hold Christmas Island IO. I originally left it abandoned because I figured anything I had there would get bombed to shreds by bombers from Java. I am holding Cocos Island with some forces I retreated from Borneo.
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Ian R »

You only need PBYs for the atolls where it takes a year to build the airstrip from 0(0) to 2. Xmas, Starbuck, and others can be built up to 4+ so you can base some 4Es there. Even a B-18 will make subs submerge. Also, SBDs do a reasonable job on naval search.

I'd say don't bother about Xmas IO - ship the fuel from Abadan across the far corner of the map and off it again to Capetown, then haul it straight to Adelaide. The benefits - the tankers involved use almost no fuel, have little to no wear and tear, and are mostly out of harm's way - outweighs the cost of tying up some extra hulls on the longer transits.
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Sardaukar
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Sardaukar »

I love to use CVE Long Island in convoys with SBD squadron on it, set for ASW, between SF and PH.
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Ian R »

ORIGINAL: Sardaukar

I love to use CVE Long Island in convoys with SBD squadron on it, set for ASW, between SF and PH.

Do you embed her in the convoy, or put her in a small CVE TF with a follow command?
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HansBolter
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by HansBolter »

The AI in my current game was very aggressive around Colombo for most of '42.

This caused me to use Bombay as my main naval base in the region and Cochin for deliveries from Cape Town.

One drawback is the port size at Cochin. Unloading is slow and I would probably have been better off sending the convoys to Bombay.
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Sardaukar
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RE: Convoy Size

Post by Sardaukar »

ORIGINAL: Ian R

ORIGINAL: Sardaukar

I love to use CVE Long Island in convoys with SBD squadron on it, set for ASW, between SF and PH.

Do you embed her in the convoy, or put her in a small CVE TF with a follow command?

Depends, both seem to work OK. It is 1943 in my game and IJN sub threat is minimal, but it is good training for those Marine VSBM squadrons.
"To meaningless French Idealism, Liberty, Fraternity and Equality...we answer with German Realism, Infantry, Cavalry and Artillery" -Prince von Bülov, 1870-

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RE: Convoy Size

Post by RangerJoe »

ORIGINAL: Sardaukar

ORIGINAL: Ian R

ORIGINAL: Sardaukar

I love to use CVE Long Island in convoys with SBD squadron on it, set for ASW, between SF and PH.

Do you embed her in the convoy, or put her in a small CVE TF with a follow command?

Depends, both seem to work OK. It is 1943 in my game and IJN sub threat is minimal, but it is good training for those Marine VSBM squadrons.

After 90 days they are also carrier qualified. Repeat as needed.
Seek peace but keep your gun handy.

I'm not a complete idiot, some parts are missing!

“Illegitemus non carborundum est (“Don’t let the bastards grind you down”).”
― Julia Child

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