Osprey's Dornier Do-335

Author:

Robert Forsythe

Publisher/Distributor

Osprey Publishing

Price

$20.00 MSRP

Reviewer:

Scott Van Aken

Notes: 80 pages, 7 x 9 inches, softbound
ISBN: 978-1-4728-2889-7

One of the more interesting types developed by Dornier was the Do-335. It was designed pretty much as a fighter bomber and took advantage of mounting an engine in front of and behind the pilot to make up the twin engine layout. This meant an extension shaft from the rear engine to the aft propeller. The design was worked out with the very small Go-9 technology demonstrator.

Interest languished for a period of time before it was decided to start up the full size type. As Dornier was fully committed to various projects, the work was given to Junkers. However, they moved very slowly on the project until it was taken back by Dornier. There were some issues with what turned out to be a very large aircraft, the biggest one, and one that was never fully solved were problems wit the rear engine overheating. Undoubtedly continued development of the type would have seen that cured, but like most late war projects, time ran out.

A rather large number of prototypes and pre-production aircraft did make it into the air with many more still under construction. There were developments as a trainer and as a night fighter which did make it into metal as well as a rather ambitious long range reconnaissance Do/Ju-635 aircraft which only progressed to the mock-upk stage.

Sufficient flyable aircraft were available at the end of the war so that the major powers were able to test several types. Those who had a chance to fly the plane lauded its flying characteristics with some calling it overpowered. However, poor workmanship quality often caused issues even during wartime testing of prototypes.

Typical of the series, we get a very good background on the need for the aircraft as well as a very comprehensive look at the development of the airplane. This includes the various test flights and the changes made as development continued. Fortunately a lot of high quality period photos survived and many of those are included in this book. While one airframe has been fully restored, there is only one photo of this plane in the Smithsonian at the end of the book. In all, this is an excellent look at this rather unique aircraft and a look at what could have been.

October 2018

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