Dornier Do 335
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Dornier Do 335

The unusual tandem-engined layout used in the Pfeil was first patented by Dr Claude Dornier in 1937, but it was not until the end of 1942 that permission to build a prototype fighter with tractor and pusher DB 603 engines was given. However the Pfeil was never encountered in operations, although available in small numbers as the Do 335 A-1 single-seat fighter (with a maximum speed of 763km/h), Do 335A-6 two-seat night fighter and Do 335 B-series heavy fighter and night fighter towards the end of the war.

Dornier Do 335

 ENGINE2 x DB-603A, 1800kW
    Take-off weight9610 kg21187 lb
    Empty weight7400 kg16314 lb
    Wingspan13.8 m45 ft 3 in
    Length13.9 m46 ft 7 in
    Height5.0 m16 ft 5 in
    Wing area38.5 m2414.41 sq ft
    Max. speed700 km/h435 mph
    Ceiling12000 m39350 ft
    Range w/max.fuel2250 km1398 miles
    Range w/max.payload1100 km684 miles
 ARMAMENT2 machine-guns, 1 x 30mm cannon, 500kg of bombs

Dornier Do 335A three-view drawing (1667 x 1057)

Comments1-20 21-40
John, 11.06.2016

Dawkins, I believe this fighter should have been intended as an interceptor for the allied raids. This would have made a more effective combat plane unlike the Me 262 which took double the fuel of a twin engine piston aircraft and had engines often prone to flameouts, alongside a lack of strategic metals for the engines, those were its main weaknesses. I believe this fighter would done more contributions if it had been in the place of the Me 262. It would have performed better against the bomber raids.

Fardad Izadi, 17.04.2016

In comparing, between the general engine installations methods on twin engines aircraft, This tandem engine configuration,gives the aircraft better chance to escape from the enemy fighters firings damages , specially from the rear side (6 clock)during combat & dogfight.

Dawkins, 11.04.2016

While undoubtedly cool looking, and certainly likely to have been effective as a figheter bomber, I think people here are over rating its chances as a fighter. There is literally no rearward visibility, and visibility is hindered in every other direction.. a common failing of German fighters in particular of the era.

Oldgysgt, 09.01.2016

If one looks at the “Big Picture”, the outcome of WWII was never really in doubt. Wars are not won or lost by one or two “Wonder Weapons”. The combined industrial might of the Allies could not have been defeated by Hitler’s last minute gadgets. Remember that the US had the Lockheed P80 coming off the assembly lines in February 1945, and the UK had the Gloster Meteor in production and the De Havilland D.H.100 Vampire coming on line. The Manhattan Project was not being pursued to Nuke Japan; it was intended for the Nazis. If Germany had had enough advanced fighters to drag out the war in Europe for another 4 months, it would have been two German cities who received “Fat Man” and “Little Boy” in early August 1945, not two Japanese cities. The end result would have been the same; Germany’s total defeat.

Ron, 05.03.2015

Imagine a twin-engined Spitfire or Fw 190 based on this configuration! Or any fighter you like. Less drag than any other style of twin.

If you put couter-rotating props on the tail pusher-style with a safe detach mechanism or ejection seat to bail out, it cleans up the nose for unsynchronized weapons. Of course handling might be a problem. You might put the main plane behind the elevator plane like the Kyushu fighter prototype. Jet power by that time does the same without the bailout danger or torque. Just keep the gunsmoke from entering the jet intake by mounting weapons well away or behind it.

shangri-la, 25.04.2014

I would like to post some information in defense of this excellent aircraft design: 1)Centerline Thrust(counter rotate. props,no torque). 2)Twin Engine design (for performance; can fly on either for. or aft. engine; safety "net")2 DB 605 V 12's 1800 hp each. 3)Centerline armament-fuselage mounted (1 30mm & 2 20mm cannon), kept "warm" by for. engine; not prone to 'freezing' or jamming like wing mounted armament; long range, exploding shell benefit of cannon over guns. 4)Fastest piston engine prop driven fighter/bomber of WW2 (pushing 800 kph - 500 mph). 5)First aircraft DESIGN in history w/ ejection seat-jettisonable tail unit. 6)Internal bomb bay (500 kg). 7)"Teething" problems would have likely been fixed upon mass production-aircraft would have made formidable fighter/bomber, along with Me 262, Me 163 & He 219 against Allied bomber streams. 8)Armored radiator housings & other vital ventral areas make aircraft less prone to damage from ground/AA fire. 9)Prof.Claude Dornier pioneer/patent holder-centerline thrust designs. Arguably one of the great piston engine prop.driven fighter designs in history-certainly one of the most unique! Thank You for the time.

paul scott, 10.04.2013

Amazing, shaped aircraft,, love it!

Pfeil, 27.10.2012

The ejection seat didn't have to clear the pusher prop. Both the dorsal fin and the propeller could be jettisoned using a switch in the cockpit prior to ejecting.
The ventral fin could be detached in the same manner in the event of a belly landing, even though there was an emergency valve to lower and lock the landing gear in case of hydraulic failure.
The Do-335 also had a fire suppression system for both engines. With annunciators to warn the pilot of engine fires. In later prototypes mirrors were added to provide rearward visibility.
Another interesting feature was a system that would limit control surface deflection at high speeds, operated using a switch in the cockpit.

Barry, 13.08.2012

Apologies my posting of the 12.11.2010 is incorrect. The first aircraft to feature ejection seats operationally was the brilliant He219 Uhu.

gooda, 20.06.2011

intelligence later identified the aircraft as DO 335. This indicates the aircraft could have been used operationally in small numbers.

, 20.06.2011

Dornier Do 335

Bob Murphy, 07.01.2011

Aleksandar, the DO335 that Pierre Clostermann encountered in the air was being flown back to Munich at the end of the war to return it to Dornier.
It was their property, not the Luftwaffe's. If I remember correctly it was not armed and it was being flown by a test pilot with no gunnery experience.
He wrote about that flight and others in a book called Luftwaffe Test Pilot which is quite interesting. It included (from memory) pages from his log book showing the flight details.
I saw that same plane, I think, in the Deutsches Museum in Munich where as part of the restoration deal that got to put it on display for awhile.
One of the curators at the Smithsonian said it was the very same plane I had seen in Germany.

Robin DePledge, 09.12.2010

The Do-335 at Dulles was returned to Germany for refurbishment in 1980. The aircraft was refurbished at Oberpfaffenhofen Flugplatz nr. Munich, then returned to the US. A fascinating aircraft to see and very fortunate for the outcome of WW2 that it wasn't developed sooner.

Barry, 12.11.2010

The coloured illustration is, I believe, a reprsentation of the A-6 model which featured an observer to operate the installed FuG 220 radar system.
As noted elsewhere this was the first operational aircraft to feature an ejection seat, for obvious reasons.

Cliff Underwood, 05.10.2010

I saw this plane in a hanger at Reims in Sept. 1945, and then again at the Udvar-Hazy museum in 2009.

ddc, 26.09.2010

british and american pilots tested this plane. it out classed anything short of a jet,and even some of them. heavy armment high speed, and long range. i don t want to face that in a mustang or anything else.

carlo, 28.12.2009

do335 arrived too late as others beautiful and strong airplanes
if politicians don't make a lot of mistakes, deutschland technology may be win the war... I think

Mike Leptuch, 06.12.2009

The one at the Air and Space Museum near Dulles Airport in Washington DC has been restored to mint condition the tail number is 102. It is displayed next to a mint Arado 234 Blitz that even has 2 RATO units strapped to the wings. A must see if your ever in DC.

Dale Gallmann, 26.03.2009

I had read that a DO-335 shot down an P47 Thunderbolt during the war. Also, it was the first aircraft fitted with an ejector seat. Two handles on either side of the canopy were pulled back for release and the pilot was ejected clear of the pusher propeller. Interestingly... a pilot who used this feature was discovered dead without his arms... the thought was when the canopy cleared it took his arms with it and... without arms... was unable to open the chute.

Tom, 06.02.2009

Jep, controlling it is a bit hard, turning requires good skills. But it has very good speed, so you get away from an enemy, and turn at big angle.

1-20 21-40

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