A spacecraft is any type of vehicle or machine which has been made to travel through space. There are several types of spacecraft featured throughout Hitchhiker's, most notably the starship Heart of Gold. Zaphod Beeblebrox and Ford Prefect appear to be avid enthusiasts of spacecraft, with both of them having detailed knowledge of different makes and models, and both of them being somewhat capable at piloting them.
- 1 History
- 2 Known spacecraft
- 2.1 Billion Year Bunker
- 2.2 Bistromath
- 2.3 Blagulon Kappa policecraft
- 2.4 Business End
- 2.5 Giant silver suncruiser
- 2.6 Golgafrinchan Ark Fleet Ship B
- 2.7 Grebulon reconnaissance ship
- 2.8 Haggunenon Admiral ship/Disaster Area stunt ship
- 2.9 Hotblack Desiato's limoship
- 2.10 Heart of Gold
- 2.11 Krikkit One
- 2.12 "Little star trolley"
- 2.13 Tangerine star buggy
- 2.14 Tanngrisnir
- 2.15 Vogon Constructor Fleet
There is not much information given on the history of the invention of spacecraft, although there is a detailed explanation on the discovery of the Infinite Improbability Drive, which is used to power the Heart of Gold.
This starship was commissioned by the Galactic government to carry certain "by-products", such as aorist rods and biological weapons. It was made to be almost indestructible - featuring a cargo hold which had been reinforced in many different ways. The crew was to steer the ship towards a black hole, where it would be sucked in and forever be destroyed. However, the captain took a detour to his home planet because he wanted some of the lobsters that were in abundance on the planet. The ship crashed into the water and split in two. The Billion Year Bunker only appeared in the novel Young Zaphod Plays it Safe.
Blagulon Kappa policecraft
This policecraft was described in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy as slate-green in colour, bulbous and shark-like. It also had stenciled writing in various degrees of size and unfriendliness which informed whoever cared to read them as to where the ship was from, what section of the police it was assigned to, and where the power feeds should be connected. It was also totally dark and silent, as if dead. It was piloted by Shooty and Bang Bang.
Giant silver suncruiser
This ship was two miles long and capped by a bridge that offered a panoramic view of the stars. Its interior corridors were covered in brown Hessian wall-weave, and home to fifteen million Golgafrinchans in cryonic suspension. It was piloted by the Captain, who spent the majority of his time in a bath on board the ship, and his Number One and Number Two. Upon completing its five-year journey, this ship crashed onto Earth.
This huge, grey ship was structurally damaged when it was struck by a meteorite, rendering much of it's programming and cyberbrain functions useless. The Grebulons on board decorated much of this ship with furniture and technology from Earth, after becoming fascinated with studying transmissions from radio and televisions on Earth. Tricia McMillan was invited onto this ship by the Grebulons to discuss astrology and astronomy.
Haggunenon Admiral ship/Disaster Area stunt ship
This was a ship with a classic, simple design, which was about twenty yards long and shaped like a flattened salmon. It was admired by Zaphod and Ford when they saw it parked outside Milliways, as it was very clean, very sleek, and completely black. It was so extremely dark that it was hard to make out the shape, and it was almost impossible to tell how close you were standing to it. Zaphod commented that the light "seemed to fall into it", and Ford said that his eyes seemed to slide off it. Zaphod repeatedly attempted to reach out and stroke the outside of the craft and feel the surface, however his hand was stopped, as it was totally frictionless. Zaphod called it "one mother of a mover".
Marvin was able to touch the surface of the ship and open up an entry hatchway, and the interior of the ship was completely black. There were black controls labelled in black, on a black background, with a little light that lit up black, which made it difficult to control the ship. The ceiling and walls of the swaying cabin were also black, as well as the seats, control panel, the instruments and the little screws that held them in place. The thin tufted nylon floor covering was black, and when a corner of the foam underlay was lifted up that was also discovered to be was black.
In the Secondary Phase of the radio series the ship belonged to the Admiral of a fleet of Haggunenon battle ships, with a communication screen and a comfortable chair with two headrests, which was revealed to be the Admiral himself, who had shape-shifted into that form and fallen asleep. In The Restaurant at the End of the Universe the ship was a stunt ship for the band Disaster Area, which was owned by Hotblack Desiato and was set on a collision course with a sun. The decor had been chosen in honour of its owner's sad, lamented, and tax-deductible condition.
Hotblack Desiato's limoship
This coach built craft was thirty yards long, a big ship which had "obviously been designed" for the purpose of "making the beholder sick with envy". It was seen in the car park of Milliways. The paintwork and accessory detail clearly said: "Not only am I rich enough to afford this ship, I am also rich enough to not take it seriously". It was "wonderfully hideous". Zaphod noted that it had a multi-cluster quark drive and perspulex running boards, and had to be a "Lazlar Lyricon custom job", due to the infra-pink lizard emblem on the nutrino cowling - which was Lazlar's trademark. Ford had passed one of these ships before, calling it "amazing-looking", and he stated that it looks like a fish, moves like a fish, and "steers like a cow". On the other side of the ship was a large mural with the image of a bursting sun - the unmistakable trademark of the band Disaster Area. Having seen Hotblack Desiato, a member of the band, inside Milliways, Ford concluded that the ship belonged to him.
Heart of Gold
This starship features an Infinite Improbability Drive, which Zaphod Beeblebrox stole.
The sole Krikkit starship.
"Little star trolley"
A small craft admired by both Ford and Zaphod, who spotted it in the car park outside Milliways. It was small but extraordinary, and "pretty much a rich kid's toy". It resembled nothing so much as a paper dart, about twelve feet long, and was made of thin yet tough metal foil. At the rear end was a small horizontal two-man cockpit, and it also contained a tiny charm-drive engine, which was not capable of moving the craft at any great speed.
Tangerine star buggy
A small ship noted by Ford to have "black sunblasters" when he spotted it parked outside Milliways. The star buggy was said to be misnamed as it was not capable of making interstellar distances. It was in reality a "sporty planet hopper" which had been "dolled up" to look like something it wasn't, however it did have nice lines.
Bowerick Wowbagger's spaceship.
A fleet of yellow spacecraft which was said to hang in the air in "the way that bricks don't".