In episode 2 of season 1, the Eagle you can see in the first five minutes is referred to as Eagle 1. Yet, in the scenes within the cockpit, you can clearly see a nice big 6. There's another episode (can't remember which) where an Eagle is referred to as 8, where you can also see a 6 within the cockpit.

So, what's the reason? Were they lazy in decorating the Eagle's interior before filming? Or am I missing something else?

I did check both audio tracks of my german DVDs, and what I'm referring to is the english soundtrack. The german one is partly different (Eagle 6 for episode 2, Eagle 8 for the other one).

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    I believe it's just a designation for the mission as TangoOversway mentions. It's not a fixed vehicle. Jul 5, 2012 at 18:36

3 Answers 3


I don't have the links, but a year or two ago I ordered the full Space: 199 DVD set and viewed them all in order. That prompted me to do some searching on the Internet with some of the same questions, such as why Eagle 1 could get destroyed so many times and how come they didn't run out of Eagles.

It turns out they have a manufacturing system to make new Eagles or put together parts of old ones that are damaged to create more usable ones. As I recall, "Eagle One" is like the United States "Air Force One." It's the commander's Eagle.

Of course, there's the out of universe explanation that they had one set and may not have always taken the time to put up a new number on the set.

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    +1 for "Air Force One" although in that particular episode it wasn't the commander flying it, so maybe he rents it out. :)
    – takrl
    Aug 21, 2011 at 15:37
  • Who was flying it? It might also apply to one particular pilot. Didn't Alan have special standing as Chief Pilot?
    – Tango
    Aug 21, 2011 at 16:07
  • There were two people in the cockpit, but I don't think Alan was one of them. But I'll check tonight to be sure ...
    – takrl
    Aug 22, 2011 at 5:58
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    I think an out-of-universe answer is that this was the first live action production Gerry and Sylvia Anderson did and the crew may have just lost track of points like that. I noticed the numbering on the Eagle doors as well, but that would only make sense for the crew module, since modules could be interchanged. Honestly, when frameworks and cockpit sections can be interchanged, numbering Eagles makes less sense. Does the number stay with the frame or the cockpit?
    – Tango
    Sep 5, 2011 at 15:39
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    Just as an aside - Any USAF aircraft that carries the President uses the call sign "Air Force One". Much the same, Marine helicopters use "Marine One", Naval craft use "Navy One", etc. If the President takes a civilian flight, it uses "Executive One".
    – JohnP
    Sep 18, 2018 at 15:41

It's most likely that the Eagles are being given a semi-fixed identifier which consists of a name followed by a number. The name would be assigned to a unit on a semi-permanent basis, which in this case the unit would the moon base. In the show, 'Eagle' could quite possibly be the units's assigned name, and 1, 2, 3, etc. would be specific identifiers for each craft regardless what the actual hull number is.

So while it would appear odd for people to see a craft numbered 6 to be called 1, it is a pretty regular occurrence in real life.

As a side note, this naming setup is very common in the United States military and specifically with the Air Force (wikipedia reference).


There's another explanation- the Eagles are modular constructions, the frame, the command module & the cargo/passenger module are all separate - a given Eagle is assembled out of different modules, hence the Command module '6' could well be part of the Eagle designated as "1" that day.

Eagles were given numbers up to 29 in the series- the numbers must have been assigned on a mission basis, not to a particular Eagle craft (though the modules may have had permanent numbers painted on them).

  • There's a couple of reasons in your answer here, do you have any evidence you can edit in for them for why this is correct?
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Sep 18, 2018 at 13:45

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