Dornier Do 317

Dornier Do 317

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Dornier Do 317

The Do 317 was originally designed to fulfil the RLM’s Bomber B specifications of 1939. The Bomber B was to be a twin engined medium bomber, capable of carrying a 8,816lb bomb load to any part of the United Kingdom, and was to be powered by a new generation of new powerful engines.

The original 1940 design for the Do 317 was very similar to the Do 217M. It would have carried a crew of four in a pressurised cabin, but problems with the new engines caused the cancellation of the program. Some features from the Do 317 were then used in the Do 217P.

The Bomber B program suffered from the failure of the new engines it was based around. The Junkers Jumo 222 was a 24 cylinder inline engine with the cylinders arranged in six rows of four, giving it the appearance of a four row radial engine, but none of the advantages. The Daimler Benz DB 604 was another 24 cylinder inline engine, this time with four rows of six cylinders, arranged in an X formation. These engines were expected to produce at least 2,500hp and would have been much more powerful than contemporary German engines. The first prototype of the Jumo 222 was ready in 1939, but despite three more years of development work it was never ready to enter full production. The DB 604 was no more successful.

As a result the prototype Do 317 had to use less powerful engines. Work resumed on the Do 317 late in 1941. The Do 317A was powered by the DB 603A and was very similar to the Do 217M, although did feature triangular fins on the tail plane. Five prototypes of this model were built, with test flights beginning late in 1943, but it was no better than the Do 217M.

The single Do 317B prototype received the 2,870hp DB 610 double engines, which finally gave the aircraft a power plant with the required level of performance. In this form the Do 317B prototype reached a top speed of 372 mph. The new aircraft features a wider 85ft wing, and would have carried one 20mm MG 151 in the tail and three twin-gun machine gun turrets, two of which were to be remote controlled from the pressure cabin.

When the Do 317 program was abandoned, the five Do 317A prototypes were redesignated as Do 217Rs, and used to launch the Hs 293A radio-controlled missile. In this format the cabins were not pressurized.

Span: 67ft 8.5in
Length: 61ft
Max Speed: 348-372mph (top speed with DB 610)
Range: 2472 miles
Bomb load: 8816lb

Dornier Do 317 - History

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V1 & V2: Daimler-Benz DB 603A inverted V12
Horsepower: 1,750hp
Number: 2

B: Daimler-Benz DB 610A/B double engines*
Horsepower: 2,870hp
Number: 2
*2 x DB 605

Fuel Capacity: N/A
Type: N/A
Lubricant Capacity: N/A
Type: N/A
Hydraulic Fluid Capacity: N/A
Type: N/A

Maximum Speed (V1): 373 mph (600 kph)
Maximum Speed (B): 416 mph (670 kph)
Cruise Speed: N/A
Range (B, without auxiliary bomb-bay tank):
3600km (2,237 miles)
Initial Climb: N/A
Endurance: N/A
Service Ceiling: N/A

Do 317 V1:
Bombload of six 1,102 lb. (500kg) bombs in internal bomb bay.

Do 317B:
Bombload of 12,346 lb. (5600kg) in internal bomb bay
Two 3,968 lb. (1800kg) bombs on wing racks.


The first Skymaster, Model 336 Skymaster, had fixed landing gear and initially flew on February 28, 1961. [3] [4] It went into production in May 1963 [1] with 195 being produced through mid-1964. [2]

In February 1965, Cessna introduced the Model 337 Super Skymaster. [5] The model was larger, and had more powerful engines, retractable landing gear, and a dorsal air scoop for the rear engine. (The "Super" prefix was subsequently dropped from the name.) [2] In 1966, the turbocharged T337 was introduced, and in 1973, the pressurized P337G entered production. [2]

Cessna built 2993 Skymasters of all variants, including 513 military O-2 versions. [1] Production in America ended in 1982, but was continued by Reims in France, with the FTB337 STOL and the military FTMA Milirole. [4]

The Skymaster handles differently from a conventional twin-engine aircraft, primarily in that if an engine fails, the plane will not yaw toward that engine. Without the issue of differential thrust inherent to conventional (engine-on-wing) twins, engine failure on takeoff will not produce yaw from the runway heading. With no one-engine-out minimum controllable speed (Vmc), in-flight control at any flying speed with an engine inoperative is not as critical as it is with engines on the wing with the associated leverage however, performance in speed and, particularly, rate of climb are affected. Flying a Skymaster requires a pilot to hold a multiengine rating, although many countries issue a special "centerline thrust rating" for the Skymaster and other similarly configured aircraft. [2]

Ground handling requires certain attention and procedures. The rear engine tends to overheat and can quit while taxiing on very hot days. [6] Accidents have occurred when the runway is shorter than the single-engine take-off roll and pilots, unaware of a rear engine shutdown, have attempted take-off on the nose engine alone. [7] Federal Aviation Administration Airworthiness Directive 77-08-05 prohibits single-engine take-offs and requires the installation of a placard marked "DO NOT INITIATE SINGLE ENGINE TAKEOFF". [8]

The Skymaster's unique sound is made by its rear pusher propeller slicing through turbulent air from the front propeller and over the airframe while its front tractor propeller addresses undisturbed air. [2]

From 1976 until the middle 1990s, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection used O-2 variants of the 337 Skymaster as tactical aircraft during firefighting operations. These were replaced with North American OV-10 Broncos, starting in 1993. [9]

Brothers to the Rescue Edit

From 1991 until 2001 the Cuban exile group Hermanos al Rescate (Brothers to the Rescue) used Skymasters, among other aircraft, to fly search and rescue missions over the Florida Straits looking for rafters attempting to cross the straits to defect from Cuba, and when they found them, dropped life-saving supplies to them. Rescues were coordinated with the US Coast Guard, which worked closely with the group. They chose Skymasters because their high wing offered better visibility of the waters below, they were reliable and easy to fly for long-duration missions (averaging 7 hours), and they added a margin of safety with twin-engine centerline thrust. In 1996, two of the Brothers to the Rescue Skymasters were shot down by the Cuban Air Force over international waters. Both aircraft were downed by a MiG-29, while a second jet fighter, a MiG-23, orbited nearby. [10]

Do317 Explains: The Kessler Mansion

Neighbors have planted trees simply to avoid the sight of it. It’s been marketed as a potential co-working space, a Miami/LA-style party house for the opulent set, or perhaps ground zero of a deep-pocketed investor’s Airbnb goldmine. This is the story of how a nearly 30,000 square foot mansion on Kessler Boulevard was built, and how one man’s quest for absolute luxury gave Indianapolis the ugliest mansion in America.

It began with one structure, a three-bedroom ranch home owned by small-time construction magnate Jerry Hostetler, better known in his heyday as “Mr. Big.” Hostetler stood nearly 7 feet tall, a heavy-set man known by the nickname Indianapolis police coined during his time as a prolific pimp. Hostetler was convicted of the crime in 1964, and later transitioned into the construction business, which has the same vaguely criminal associations as “waste management.” Although his later business checked out as legitimate in the eyes of the law, Hostetler seemed allured by, even addicted to, propping himself up as a large-living local rake who let someone else worry about the consequences.

A probation officer entrusted with monitoring Hostetler was quoted as saying, "When asked how he became involved in the [pimping] business, [Hostetler] said it was difficult to pass up that easy money." What started out as easy money in the pimping biz turned into even bigger, easier and much more legal money in the form of construction loans. Despite his checkered past, it seemed banks (and “banks”) were eager to loan to Hostetler, and he was happy to take the money in pursuit of his fantasy home.

Hostetler, like so many egomaniacal grifters, had an empire in mind, and the three-bedroom ranch was to be the seed. He bought up the houses around his one by one, and used his construction connections to join them together.

A particular verb pops up again and again in photo spreads of the ad-hoc constructed house: “cobbled.”

The section of the compound that faces the road functions similarly to the top of an iceberg. Hostetler apparently preferred the gerbil habitat vibe when joining the five houses, and an overhead view of the property reveals the narrow hallways and round nodes of rooms that stitch together the architectural monster. The Kessler Mansion looks like an amoeba photographed just as it engulfs weaker single-cell organisms.

It falls under no particular genre of home design, with some nods to Spanish in some places and downright medieval in others. Many rooms have Cathedral ceilings while others are cramped as if drawn by a shipbuilder. Some walls are stark white stucco, and some walls are made of heavy, round stones cemented into place like a meade hall. Hostetler built turrets, ballrooms, wet bars, and even a Playboy-style grotto complete with a hot tub.

In short, the Kessler Mansion looks like a house designed by a committee of drunk 14-year-old boys in 1985. There are rooms that would’ve been rejected by the Scarface set design team as “a little too much,” especially in a part of town known for its modestly upscale family homes. Even if it were plopped next door to Scott Jones’ gothic-by-way-of-Tudor mega-lodge in Carmel, it would seem excessive and gaudy.

The problem with all that easy money is it spends just as easily, and judging by the unpaid bills Hostetler left behind, it’s a safe bet that he would’ve spent as much as the bank would’ve loaned him. It’s also a safe bet that, given Hostetler’s appetite for exorbitance — he had ballooned to an estimated 500 pounds by the time of his death in 2006— no amount of custom marble or plaster would ever be enough. If the money had been available, he likely would have knitted the whole neighborhood together into an abominable tangle of balconies, hallways and weirdly-shaped windows.

Hostetler died in deep financial trouble, alone in his crumbling mansion, having filed for bankruptcy several times. He left the mansion to his secretary, Margaret Moore, in what seemed like a magnanimous gesture but turned into a financial quagmire for Moore. When the banks finally seized the house, it was a foreclosure served in courses, as pieces of the house were repossessed, but not the whole. Hostetler had financed each addition separately, so some wings were paid off while others became the property of his creditors.

Moore sold it to Indiana-born entrepreneur Chad Folkening, who still has it listed on Airbnb, though feedback on the site says Folkening has recently been canceling reservations. The direct website for the house is still active, but does not list either a pool or a hot tub as available amenities.

For a brief period in 2010, the Baha Men, who at the time were being represented by Indy-based agents and producers, rented the mansion during a touring and recording stint. It’s been used as a co-working space, and the marketing implies it should appeal to wealthy and adventurous startups and family reunions. The wine-drinking contingent of Duggars, perhaps.

The house has been featured on HGTV, and seems to provide a bottomless clickbait opportunity for everyone from Curbed to HuffPo. And unlike most clickbait, the Kessler Mansion really pays off on the horrified-gasp-to-click ratio.

The future of the monstrous home is still up in the air. Aside from the building’s abjectly repellent look, it probably goes without saying that such a patchwork of construction has made for a maintenance nightmare. The roof(s) leak, there is mildew and mold all over — some neighbors even claim they can smell it from their own homes — and no one wants to foot the bill for the thousands of lightbulbs, BTUs of gas, and gallons of water the cavernous house requires to be livable, never mind restoring it to Hostetler’s vision.

Folkening put the home up for sale in 2012, and it remains on the market to this day. A small handful of buyers have expressed interest, and a few even qualified to purchase, but none pulled the trigger. For the money, maintenance, and resale value, it seems unlikely to become a single-family home again.

But whoever steps up to take on this globally-known eyesore is in for a lot of work, a lot of money, and a legendarily garish, larger-than-life home — maybe the ghost of its larger-than-life builder, too. If the Hostetler of corporeal being carried over to the spectral realm, it’s hard to imagine Mr. Big being anything but tickled at how many people know his name, thanks to the hideous, spectacular dream home that bled him dry, collapsed his empire, and where his body would lie in unattended state before the coroner arrived.

Regardless of whether the next owners use the mansion as a business or as a home, they’ll be inheriting a priceless piece of local history in all its tacky, improbable glory.

Do317 Explains: Lady Victory

You’ve seen her on nearly every piece of Indianapolis-branded tourist crap, on our city government website, and you can look down the street in four directions downtown and look right at her victorious face.

Lady Victory ended up atop the Soldiers & Sailors monument through a combination of public campaigning and a commission of architects and designers selected to create a memorial to all the Hoosier troops that lost their lives in the Civil War. Bruno Schmitz, a German designer, was selected to imagine the perfect monument, and he envisioned a tall obelisk adorned with sculptures and crowned with a statue of Nike, the Greek goddess of war and victory.

Commissioners spent a lot of time studying a similar monument in Cleveland, Ohio, a creation of engineer and architect Capt. Levi Scofield. It was his young assistant, the 29-year-old George Thomas Brewster who submitted the winning design.

If you ever get a chance to look at Lady Victory from a high rise around the circle, it’s an opportunity you should take. She carries an enormous sword as a symbol of justice with the tip touching the winning side of the globe at her feet, and the lamp in her hand symbolizes the light of civilization shining toward the south. On the crown of her head, a young eagle flaps its wings, representing freedom.

The Cleveland figure that inspired the monument in Indianapolis represents a new era in the depiction of Victory.

The classic European style is to depict victory with wings and a laurel wreath (as inspired by the classic Winged Victory), but the French Lady Liberty designer had chosen to symbolize victory with a torch. Indianapolis’s Lady Victory was not only an everlasting statement on the monstrous, bloody legacy of slavery, but a sign to the world that Indianapolis was not going to forget the sacrifice for a more perfect union.

Indiana was on the border of the conflict, and over 74% of eligible men fought in the Civil War — a number only topped by the citizens of Delaware. Following the Civil War, it would’ve been nearly impossible to live in the state and not know someone who fought or died.

On a political timeline, the Soldiers and Sailors monument predates any Confederate memorabilia (and yes, we do have one of those statues in Garfield Park). Enough time passed that the stone edifice became another building, another symbol, and the KKK took over much of Indiana’s local and state government — not coincidentally when those Confederate monuments were erected.

The Soldiers & Sailors monument becomes even more powerful, important, and iconic when set in the context of history. Inspired by some larger understanding about the ebb and flow of politics and togetherness, Indiana legislators centered the city itself around the ideals of justice, civility,

The entire monument is a testament to the power of moving design and sculpture, with multiple artists submitting their vision for the sculptures that surround the structure. Their stoic and pained expressions have faded into a palimpsest of selfie backdrops, wedding photos, and touristy wide-angles. The gut-wrenching “war” side of the monument soothed by the shining faces opposite them on the “peace” side seem to go unnoticed anymore.

Here’s our challenge to you, reader: take an hour and go look at the monument. Study it, stare at it, take photos of each face. Notice the slave holding up his broken chain. Go up into the One America tower to the Skyline Club and study all 38 feet and 19,000 pounds of Lady Victory — heavy, but not as much as the bloodshed, dehumanization, and conflict she represents.

She is the center of our city for a reason: to remind us every day that we are no mean city.

Dornier Do 317 - History

The 317th Engineers was first constituted on 24 October 1917 and organized at Camp Sherman, Ohio as the 317th Engineer Regiment, 92nd Division. Like the rest of the 92nd Division, the 317th Engineers was an all black, or “Negro troops” unit, with many of the NCOs coming from the 9th and 10th Cavalry. The 317th Engineers sailed for France in June 1918, and it was the first unit of the 92nd Division to enter the line, completing the relief of the 7th Engineers on 23 August 1918. The unit earned campaign streamers for the Meusse-Argonne and Lorraine campaigns supporting the 92nd Division and the 1st Army Corps. After the war, the 317th was demobilized 31 March 1919.

On 15 October 1942, the unit was re-designated the 317th Engineer Battalion, and was activated at Fort McClellan, Alabama, an organic element of the 92nd Infantry Division. The 92nd Infantry Division was again formed as an all black unit known as the “Black Buffaloes.” Company B deployed to Italy in July 1944 as part of the 370th Infantry Regiment Combat Team and participated in the Arno River crossing. The remainder of the Battalion deployed to Italy in September 1944 and participated in the North Apennines and Po Valley campaigns. The Battalion was awarded the Italian Croce al Merito di Guerra, and constructed a memorial to the Battalion’s dead at Torre del Lago, Italy. After the war, the Battalion was inactivated 29 November 1945.

On 20 October 1950, the Battalion was relieved from assignment to the 92nd Infantry Division and allotted to the Regular Army. It was activated on 1 November 1950 at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and moved to Germany in 1951, initially at Hoechst, then Eschborn. Throughout the Cold War, the Battalion provided combat engineer support to the US Army, enjoyed a close partnership with a German engineer battalion, and performed civic action missions throughout the European Theater, to include bridge construction in Tunisia. The German government awarded the Battalion the Fahnenband Einsatz fur Frieden und Freiheit.

In December 1990, the 317th Engineer Battalion deployed to Southwest Asia for Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. The Battalion participated in all 3 campaigns of this war: the Defense of Saudi Arabia, Liberation and Defense of Kuwait, and Cease-Fire. Company D was awarded the Valorous Unit Award as part of Task Force 1-41st Infantry, the first coalition force to breach the Saudi Arabian border on 15 February 1991 and conduct ground combat operations in Iraq.

After the Persian Gulf War, the Battalion moved to Fort Benning, Georgia, and was assigned to the 24th Infantry Division in 1992. In October 1994, the Battalion returned to Southwest Asia as part of Operation Vigilant Warrior, earning the Army Superior Unit Award. On 15 February 1996, the Battalion was relieved from assignment to the 24th Infantry Division and assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division. This reassignment was part of the re-flagging of the 24th Infantry Division as the 3rd Infantry Division.

In January 2003, the Battalion helped liberate Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom, earning the Presidential Unit Citation as part of the 3rd Infantry Division.

In 2004 the 317th Engineer Battalion was inactivated along with the 3rd Infantry Division’s Engineer Brigade, as part of the transformation of the 3rd Infantry Division to the US Army’s new modular force structure. Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 317th Engineer Battalion was reflagged as Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion.

In 2015, the 317th Engineer Battalion was re-activated at Fort Polk, Louisiana, and assigned to 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division.

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The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Indianapolis comprises 126 parishes, 68 schools, six Catholic Charities agencies and many offices of ministry across central and southern Indiana.

This site is intended to draw people more deeply into the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to help them stay connected to the broad world of our faith.

Design and development

In June 1940, Dornier produced plans for further development of the Do 217, which would have a pressurized cabin and more powerful engines (DB 604 or Jumo 222) and would be designated the Do 317. The Do 317 was one of the proposals submitted to the RLM for the "Bomber B" project. Two versions of the Do 317 were proposed: the simplified Do 317A powered by two DB 603A engines and featuring conventional defensive armament, and the more advanced Do 317B with DB 610A/B engines, remotely aimed Fernbedienbare Drehlafette-style gun turrets, heavier bombload, and an extended wing.

Six prototypes of the Do 317A were ordered, and the first of these, the Do 317 V1, commenced its flight test program on 8 September 1943. The Do 317 V1 was very similar in appearance to the Do 217, but featured a pressurized cabin and triangular tail fins. Trials with the Do 317 V1 revealed no real performance advance over the Do 217, so it was decided to complete the remaining five prototypes without cabin pressurization equipment and employ them as Henschel Hs 293 missile launchers. In this form the prototypes were redesignated Do 217R. At this time, the Do 317B project was abandoned due to changing wartime conditions.

USS Indianapolis torpedoed

On July 30, 1945, the USS Indianapolis is torpedoed by a Japanese submarine and sinks within minutes in shark-infested waters. Only 316 of the 1,196 men on board survived. However, the Indianapolis had already completed its major mission: the delivery of key components of the atomic bomb that would be dropped a week later at Hiroshima to Tinian Island in the South Pacific.

The Indianapolis made its delivery to Tinian Island on July 26, 1945. The mission was top secret and the ship’s crew was unaware of its cargo. After leaving Tinian, the Indianapolis sailed to the U.S. military’s Pacific headquarters at Guam and was given orders to meet the battleship USS Idaho at Leyte Gulf in the Philippines to prepare for the invasion of Japan.

Shortly after midnight on July 30, halfway between Guam and Leyte Gulf, a Japanese sub blasted the Indianapolis, sparking an explosion that split the ship and caused it to sink in approximately 12 minutes, with about 300 men trapped inside. Another 900 went into the water, where many died from drowning, shark attacks, dehydration or injuries from the explosion. Help did not arrive until four days later, on August 2, when an anti-submarine plane on routine patrol happened upon the men and radioed for assistance.

On August 6, 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, inflicting nearly 130,000 casualties and destroying more than 60 percent of the city. On August 9, a second atomic bomb was dropped on Nagasaki, where casualties were estimated at over 66,000. Meanwhile, the U.S. government kept quiet about the Indianapolis tragedy until August 15 in order to guarantee that the news would be overshadowed by President Harry Truman’s announcement that Japan had surrendered.

In the aftermath of the events involving the Indianapolis, the ship’s commander, Captain Charles McVay, was court-martialed in November 1945 for failing to sail a zigzag course that would have helped the ship to evade enemy submarines in the area. McVay, the only Navy captain court-martialed for losing a ship during the war, committed suicide in 1968. Many of his surviving crewmen believed the military had made him a scapegoat. In 2000, 55 years after the Indianapolis went down, Congress cleared McVay’s name.

Aftermath and Legacy of the Indianapolis

After the war, Captain McVay was court-martialed and accused of negligence. He had been given orders to zigzag at his discretion in order to avoid submarines. In an unprecedented move, the commander of the Japanese submarine that attacked the Indianapolis was called to testify. Mochitsura Hashimoto, who had previously participated in the Pearl Harbor attack, testified that he would have been able to target the ship even if it had been zigzagging. But this was not enough to exonerate McVay, who was demoted for his negligence. The punishment was lifted after Admiral Chester Nimitz became Chief of Naval Operations, but McVay retired soon after anyway. His final rank was Rear Admiral.

His supposed culpability continued to haunt him. He received “hate mail” about the Indianapolis, including from families of men who died. McVay ended up committing suicide in 1968. Many suspect that the memories of the sinking played a role. He was not the only survivor to experience psychological impacts. Cox, the seaman quoted above, reported still suffering from symptoms of PTSD, even decades later.

There is a popular perception nowadays that McVay was a “fall guy” or scapegoat for the Navy, which was attempting to cover up its numerous organizational failures regarding the sinking. This perception has been fed by both the clear evidence of McVay’s efforts to protect the Indianapolis and the strangeness of the conviction .

A few details made the court-martial unusual and suspect. No other officer in the history of the Navy whose ship had been sunk in war had been tried for negligence. The Navy also required a second charge―failure to issue a timely order to abandon ship ― to bring the case to trial. That charge was quickly dismissed because of the speed of the sinking, and because the first torpedo struck the ship's electrical center and disrupted communication. Finally, McVay had not technically been ordered to zigzag: the order left it up to his discretion, and he had complied with that diktat.

Many survivors from the ship have come to McVay’s defense over the years. A campaign was waged to clear his name in the late 1990s and early 2000s. The effort was led by a Florida middle-schooler named Hunter Scott, and involved remaining survivors and historians. Hashimoto even wrote to Senator John Warner, a sponsor of the exoneration effort in Congress. He wrote: ''Our peoples have forgiven each other for that terrible war. Perhaps it is time your peoples forgave Captain McVay for the humiliation of his unjust conviction.''

Hashimoto did not live to see the culmination of these efforts. But a measure recognizing McVay’s blamelessness eventually passed, as part of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2001. A letter reflecting the measure was placed in McVay’s file.

The mystery and horror of the Indianapolis’s voyage, sinking, and rescue have captivated the public imagination over the years. The horrific tales of shark attacks spurred new military research into shark repellents, with mixed success over the years. They also inspired writers: in addition to numerous historical works about the doomed cruiser, there have been a fictionalized novel about it and a made-for-TV movie. Another full-length film, starring Nicolas Cage, premiered in 2016.

Most famously, a scene from Jaws features the character Quint (Robert Shaw) recounting his experience surviving the sinking of the Indianapolis. Quint’s harrowing narrative presents a surprisingly faithful depiction of this strange and tragic chapter of atomic history.

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