Equipment & Vehicles
Type: Aircraft
Affiliation: United States Air Force
Main Operator: Matthews Field Air Base
Crew: 3 (pilot, co-pilot, and navigator)
Appearances: The Cham-Cham

The RTL 2 is a type of military aircraft, and is featured in the episode The Cham-Cham.


Originally, the RTL 2 was designed to transport military rockets (which were produced by the Maxwell Rocket Corporation. Since then, the aircraft have been adapted for use as a strategic bomber (designated the B-17) and as a passenger airliner.

In The Cham-Cham, the first RTL 2 aircraft was tasked with carrying an unknown cargo to an undisclosed location. But the plane was shot down by enemy fighter aircraft before it could deliver its cargo. The same series of disastrous events played out with the second RTL 2.

The third aircraft had been tasked with delivering two large missiles to Europe; and this time, the security was far tighter than had been the case with the previous two attempts. One new precaution was that the crew were not to call Control, except in the event of an emergency. Despite this, the third RTL 2 was still shot down - and by the same unidentified fighter jets.

However, due to the help of International Rescue, the fourth RTL 2 managed to reach its destination.

Technical DataEdit

Crew: normally 3
Engines: 6 general electric gas turbine after-burning jet engines
Length: 330 feet
Maximum speed: 920 mph
Range: 8,400 miles
Wingspan: 235 feet

Aircraft ProfileEdit

Cabins and CrewEdit

The aircraft has two main cabins - the cockpit and a navigation room.

Cargo HoldEdit

The RTL 2 has a massive cargo-holding bay, large enough to carry a Poseidon missile.


At the front of the aircraft, forward of the nose wheel storage well, is a radar scanner dish and an avionics bay. Behind the cockpit and the communications station is a life-support systems bay and a personal hygiene station.

Further down the craft is an equipment storage bay as well as a conference and strategic command area. After these are two personnel/troop transportation cabins (one on port side, and one on starboard side) in addition to a personnel seating area and a personnel equipment storage area.

Even further down the RTL 2 is a weapons bay with underside deployment/access doors. Around this area are some fuselage-mounted underfloor fuel cells.

Past this point, separated from the weapons bay by a bulkhead and firewall is a cargo bay (which contains cargo clamps and is divided into two sections) that can accommodate vehicles, humanitarian supplies, and military equipment. A ramp at the end of the RTL 2 allows the loading of cargo.

Attached to each wing is a triple jet engine nacelle. Each nacelle contains three VEI turbofan jet engines.

Additionally, there is an electronic countermeasures antenna attached to the tail section of the craft.


The RTL 2s are stationed at Matthews Field Air Base, and are stored in massive hangars.

Shot DownEdit

An RTL 2 is attacked and shot down by three enemy fighter planes while on a secret missile delivery mission.

4th Mission Edit

Wanda Lamour (Lady Penelope) changes the vocals to the hit tune Dangerous Game which then gave the fighters the wrong information, thus allowing the fourth RTL 2 to arrive safely.

Tail MarkingsEdit

Cross-sections (Cutaway Drawings)Edit

For a full list of books and magazines which the cross-sections (cutaway drawings) appeared in, see:

Main article: History of the Cutaway Drawings (Classic Thunderbirds)
RTL2 Cutaway

Redan's edition


  • According to the flight map, the RTL 2 must have been shot down somewhere near the Canadian border with Alaska, possibly over the Beaufort Sea.
  • The RTL-2 model was later slightly reworked and repainted for the Anderson's next series Captain Scarlet & The Mysterons as an airliner and a bomber.



View-master reels cover image (Dutch)

Known merchandise containing the RTL-2 can be found on the Sawyer's View-master reels that were released for sale in 1966.

Somportex Gum CardsEdit

Somportex gum cards, issued in 1966, included 3 cards with shots of the RTL-2 on them.


Solo magazine
  • Redan comic No.18, issued 15th January 2002, included a cut-away drawing.
  • Solo magazine No.26 issued 12th August 1967, had a picture of the RTL-2 on its cover.

Ad blocker interference detected!

Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.