(Oiler by Takeshi Yuki scanned from "Color Paintings of Japanese Warships")


Tabular Record of Movement

© 2008-2018 Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.

Revision 2

20 September 1943:
Matsunoura. Laid down at Harima Zosensho K. K.ís shipyard as an 891-ton Standard Type 2TE coastal motor tanker. [1]

9 October 1943:
Launched and named MUROTSU MARU.

29 October 1943:
Completed and requisitioned by the IJN. Registered as a specially installed transport (oil supply) in the Kure Naval District. That same day, begins conversion to a fleet oiler.

4 February 1944:
Completes conversion.

5 February 1944:
Departs Kure.

6 February 1944:
Arrives at Tokuyama Naval Fuel Depot.

8 February 1944:
Departs Tokuyama and transports fuel oil to Kobe, Owase, Yokkaichi, Kushimoto and Kure, then returns to Tokuyama.

30 March 1944:
At Kobe undergoes compass adjustment.

29 May 1944:
Departs Shimotsu.

31 May 1944:
Departs Motoyama.

2 June 1944:
Arrives at Maizuru.

9 June 1944:
Departs Maizuru and then travels over the next 3 months between Niigata, Ominato, Kataoka, Otaru and Tokuyama.

25 June 1944:
Arrives at Kure.

4 July 1944:
At 1920 departs Kataoka Wan in convoy O-405 consisting of KOJO, SANTO, KOAN and MUROTSU MARUs escorted by destroyer NOKAZE and kaibokan HACHIJO. The latter is apparently later detached.

9 July 1944:
At 1920 arrives at Otaru.

10 July 1944:
Arrives at Ominato.

24 July 1944:
At 0400 departs Otaru in Ki-404 convoy also consisting of KASUGASAN, KOJO and SANTO MARUs escorted by kaibokan HACHIJO and destroyer NOKAZE.

29 July 1944:
At 2325 arrives at Kataoka Wan, Paramushiro Island.

25 August 1944:
Kure. Undergoes system repairs.

6 November 1944:
System repairs are completed. Departs Kure for Tokuyama, then transports fuel oil to Kure, Kobe and Yokkaichi.

30 November 1944:
Arrives at Kobe.

15 August 1945: Cessation of Hostilities:
Assigned as a special transport to the Maizuru demobilization bureau.

1 November 1945:
Lt Samejima Osamu (67) is appointed CO.

20 November 1945:
Maizuru Navy Yard. Begins repairs.

20 January 1946:
Repairs terminated. Never serves as a repatriation vessel.

21 August 1946:
Removed from the Navy List. Sold to an unknown private firm, probably a ship yard, for reconstruction.

The reconstruction is completed. [2]

1950 or earlier:
Sold to Tokyo Yusen, K. K., Tokyo. Used as a coastal tanker along the Japanese coast.

Sold to Nisshin Tanker K. K., Tokyo and renamed NAGATO MARU No.7.

22 November 1962:
Begins scrapping at Tsuneishi.

Authorsí Notes:
[1] The prototype of the 2TE class, the most unreliable and poorly constructed of the Japanese War Program ships. Three types of engine were used on the design, including an older hot bulb diesel type. With poor construction, the ships were plagued with frequent engine breakdowns and other problems. In contrast to the somewhat better 2E cargo design used mainly in Japanese waters, many 2TE tankers were called on to steam to the Philippines, Borneo and Singapore areas.

Ironically, the small size and very poor quality of the design actually meant a much higher survival rate than other wartime designs sent south as the ships spent much of their time laid up in ports awaiting, or undergoing, repairs. Postwar, the poor condition of the ships meant they were rebuilt, often from the mid-hull up, and as effectively new units, often enjoyed long post-war lives, longer than any other design. The last 2TE believed to be still afloat, cargo ship KAH POH (ex-NANSHIN MARU No. 25), was listed in Lloyds Register until at least 2002.

[2] MUROTSU MARU remains a tanker, somewhat unusual, as most such ships are rebuilt as cargo ships.

Thanks to Gilbert Casse of France.

- Bob Hackett and Peter Cundall.

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