The newly-opened Wargaming.net Dornier 17 Interpretation Zone at the RAF Museum in Cosford offers a look at the painstaking process of restoring the last Do 17 bomber in existence.
The Dornier Do 17 bomber brought up from beneath Goodwin Sands may not look like much, but it's an important piece of history. Unlike many other planes from that era, there are no surviving Do 17s, making this one a uniquely important piece. To help cover the expense of recovering and restoring the bomber, the Royal Air Force Museum at Cosford partnered with Wargaming.net, the company behind World of Warplanes and World of Tanks, which spent £75,000 ($122,000) to create the Dornier 17 Interpretation Zone.
A video released today shows some of the restoration in process, as the remains of the bomber are sprayed with a mixture of water and citric acid, softening the crud that encases the plane without causing further damage. Individual components of the bomber are worked on by volunteers who carefully remove corrosion from sprockets, tanks, pipes and various other bits of machinery. The recovery process is part of the overall exhibit and can be viewed by the public as it progresses.
As we noted back in October, history nerds who can't make it to Cosford to see the real thing can still look at a virtual rendition at various locations around the world through the museum's "Apparition: Dornier 17" app for iOS devices. Wargaming.net has invited users of the app to submit "photographs" of the plane, the best of which will be featured at its next RAF exhibit, set to take place in London in early 2014.