The book series I am thinking of featured a family of mother, father and two brothers living on a fairly ramshackle spaceship, each book was about 150-200 pages long, aimed probably at the 9-12 age group and was available in the UK.

The series premise was that the family travelled around doing odd jobs, but of course something always intervened and turned into the main plot point. The space ship was in bad state of repair; and most of the technology on board was dated by the standards of the time and constantly breaking.

They did have a food replicator which 'created' food based on the thoughts of the operator, again this didn't work very well and most often the flavour or texture was off. At one point one of the boys thinks really hard and tries to make roast dinner (?) but all that happens is that for weeks afterwards every food created by the replicator is a cross between the operators thoughts plus some component of the dinner (peas were mentioned ISTR).

  • It sounds like the comic "The Space Family Robinson".
    – Moriarty
    Jan 12, 2022 at 23:57
  • Definitely was a series of a few books rather than a comic.
    – cbz
    Jan 13, 2022 at 0:44
  • 2
    Dragonfall 5? maybe.
    – mwarren
    Jan 13, 2022 at 6:14
  • It dos sound like Dragonfall 5, though I don't have a copy to check the plot points you mentioned. Did they have a flying dog called Jerk and ratlike creatures called Minims? Jan 13, 2022 at 7:04
  • Ah yes, it's Dragonfall 5 - Thank you :)
    – cbz
    Jan 13, 2022 at 10:48

1 Answer 1


The series I was thinking of was the Dragonfall 5 series by Brian Earnshaw, verified by looking at extracts of the books online. The plot does indeed surround the doings of a family featuring two brothers (Tim and Sanchez) who live on an eponymously named spaceship and travel around transporting people/goods.

While it was originally published in the 70s, it was evidently available in public libraries into the 80s.

Credit too @mwarren above.

  • 2
    Cool :-) In a day or two you can accept your answer to mark the question as answered. You do this by clicking on the tick symbol to the left of your answer. Jan 13, 2022 at 11:30

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