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This single-seat fighter was another of Claude Dornier's research essays, this time into the realm of cantilever-wing construction. About two-thirds of the wings were aluminium sheet-covered, over alloy ribs and spars, forming a torsion-box structure. The remainder of the wings, from the rear spar to trailing edge, were fabric-covered, as were also the unbalanced ailerons. The fuselage was an all-metal, stressed-skin assembly, incorporating the vertical fin, all other tail surfaces being fabric-covered. Other unique features were the - apparent - single-leg undercarriage and the streamlined jettisonable fuel tank slung underneath the fuselage. Although not listed in the official list of types participating in the second D types Competition at Adlershof in the summer of 1918, the Zeppelin D I was among several other types submitted for evaluation by Front Line pilots, as an adjunct to the D Competition. The machine was then fitted with Mercedes D III engine, and when being flown by Obit. Reinhard in July 1918 it shed a top wing with fatal results. Another aircraft, with B.M.W. engine installed, competed in the third D types Competition (which was for B.M.W.-powered aircraft only).