The Dornier Do 217 was one of the best “performers” of the German Luftwaffe that ended up fulfilling various roles from bomber to reconnaissance aircraft and heavy-night fighter. This twin-engine 4-man aircraft appeared in prototype form by 1938 and would see several variants exist before the end of the war. Design of the Do 217 followed along the same lines of earlier Dornier bomber designs. Extetically ugly and with a “brutal”look, it was a scaled up Dornier Do 215 and initially powered by the same engines. In the late 1942 two new variants entered service, the K and M models. These had a rounded and streamlined nose profile; the reduction in drag and the use of powerful engines (expecially for the M version), enables the “217” to made some 50km/h faster than the earlier E model, with a bomb load of more than 4000kg. The Dornier 217 M, which first flew on July 16 of 1942, switch to more powerful in-lineV12 liquid cooled Daimler Benz DB603. This engine had better performance at high altitude than BMW 801. The Dornier 217, in majority K and M versions was present with KG2, KG40 and KG66. During Steinbock raids the “217” flown with a load of AB1000 and AB500 bombs container, charged with fire bomblets. The only capability in which the Do 217 was used up to the end of the war was as a night reconnaissance plane. In every way, the Do 217 was a success. It was fast, reliable and versatile. It wasn’t very easy to fly (it was heavy and dangerously fast in landing approach) but his high wing-load was an advantage in stability during bad weather bombing runs. The Do 217 was only built by the three Dornier plants: Dornier Werke Friedrichshafen (DWF): 316 aircraft, Dornier Werke München (DWM): 985 aircraft and Norddeutsche Dornier Werke (NDW): 602 aircraft.
Zes uitvoeringen mogelijk;
- Aufklarungs Gruppe Nacht, 1st Staffeln, Kastrup, Denmark, 1945.
- KG2, 2nd Staffeln, 1st Gruppe, Operation Steinmock, Columiem, France 1944.
- KG2, 9th Staffeln, 3rd Gruppo, France 1944.
- 7th Staffeln, 3rd Gruppo, Melun-Villaroche, France 1944.
- Auklarungs Gruppe Nacht, 1st Staffeln, Kastrup, Denmark, 1945.
- KG 2, 7th Staffeln, 3rd Gruppe, Melun-Villaroche, France 1944.
- Lang; 234 mm.