The Messerschmitt Me 323 Gigant originally started out as a glider (Me 321) that was to deliver troops and vehicles into combat zones. With its large size special aircraft had to be developed to tow the Me 321, but there weren't enough. It was decided to make the Gigant powered with six engines.
Large quantities of the French Gnome-Rhône engines were available after the fall of France in 1940.
Early models of the glider version of the Messerschmitt Me 323 had wheels the jettisoned after takeoff and then landed on skids.
Powered Me 323s had multiple wheels that were useful during landings on rough fields.
The fuselage was made from steel tubes and fabric coverings.
The nose of the Me 323's cargo hold had clamshell doors and a low bed that made it easy to load large cargos.
The wings were wooden framed with a fabric cover.
The Me 323 was difficult to fly as the flaps and rudders required a lot of force to operate.
To get a loaded Messerschmitt Me 323 into the air rocket boosters were used.