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Everything posted by Cameron

  1. Wind was very gusty this morning (and possibly still is up in Gurnee) so perhaps the are not able to install the top of the lift today.
  2. ^ Yes - because the one thing SFGAm needs to *more* freaking advertising. The park is borderline intolerable as it is..
  3. Even the best Starbucks is still a Starbucks .. It's a chain, get over it. Besides, what's this mad obsession to be the "BEST" park in the chain/state/country/region/world etc? SFGAm can be a great park for various reasons, and SFGAdv can be a great park for various (some over-lapping) reasons. There's no need to get all defensive and argumentative .. like whichever parks you like, for the reasons which matter to you; and let other people like the parks that they like for reasons which matter to them. Arguing will go no-where. In fact I'd rather chat with someone about what they like about other parks (which might not appeal to me), because I'm interested in seeing what other people like; and maybe I can see a meh-to-me park or coasters in a new and better light. I already know what I like so much about (for example) V2 and Whizzer, so what am I going to gain by talking to someone who feels the same way? Conversely, I enjoy hearing from non-enthusiasts who like Raging Bull, because they get all excited and dreamy-eyed and that's cool. Cameron ("I do draw the line at people who like the SUF clones, though") Silver. PS: More pictures of Goliath please, I just bought a new tub of hand-cream..
  4. Well the actual first proper wood coasters - side friction coasters - ran on 100% steel rails. See this picture of the Scenic Railway in Melbourne (Australia), which was built in 1912.. By your standards then, every non-side-friction wooden coaster isn't traditional and should not have been built Joking aside - this argument is getting a little ridiculous. You don't want to call it a wood coaster? Fine, then don't .. but it seems like you're not going to let anyone change your mind (which is fine), and you're not going to change anyone's mind (also fine). Going round and round in circles over it is a bit silly and subtracts from the big picture: RMC and SFGAm are doing something totally mental and insane and that's awesome. It could be built from ground up kittens and baby seals, and it would still be awesome!
  5. A 1978 Volvo 264 that I started driving when I got my license at 19 .. it originally entered our family when dad bought it new when I was 4 years old. That thing was indestructible!
  6. Then go ride American Eagle and Viper, Goliath isn't trying to be a traditional wooden coaster Joking aside, SFGAm already has two very good examples of traditional wood coasters, adding a third would be kind-of redundant. If no-one ever broke with tradition then we'd have no "plug and play" wood coasters, no inverted coasters, no impulse or launched coasters, heck we wouldn't even have steel coasters. This is a thrill-ride in an amusement park, it's totally OK to go a little mental (I would even argue that it should be encouraged!) ... I can totally understand how some people might be concerned that crazy-insanity coasters like this might mean the end of new traditional wood coasters, but I personally don't see that happening. I can't see the future of course, so I have no proof; but just like there's room in the industry for many different types of steel coasters, there should be room for various types of wood coasters too. History has shown us that gigantic traditional wood coasters just don't work (Son Of Beast, Mean Streak, Voyage, and many many others), devising new technology to deliver these types of thrills is a Good Thing . Cameron.
  7. ^^ From the rendering I'd bet there are great head-choppers at each end of that "bridge" .. but just imagine being up there, upside-down, with just a lap-bar, over nothing Oh pish-posh, it's fine. There are plenty of wood coasters that use 100% steel structure and no-one bats an eye.
  8. (Scroll up for even more photos!) Some more pictures from this morning.. First the very necessary thanks to Six Flags, Brandon, and TPR for the opportunity to cover the ride during construction. There is still a lot of work to do, but it is already seriously impressive. Now remember that I'm an old man, and I don't like anything - but Goliath genuinely looks like it's shaping up to be awesome; a definite several-changes-of-underpants ride. Really appreciative of the enormous amounts of time that Brandon and Six Flags have given to us to follow construction. Everyone involved is clearly very excited about this, and with good reason. It was cold! Now to be honest, the cold doesn't bother me too much, but my phone wasn't having any of it! The poor thing shut down several times while we were walking around, and I ended up using hand-warmers in my pockets to keep the phone warm - sacrificing my fingers in the process (you don't want to know what I'm using to type..) Our group of weary travelers.. And here we go .. I know it's stupid, but there's something oddly cool about being lead past "Keep Out" and/or "Employee Only" signs. This large space in the structure allows for the "service road" to pass beneath the ride. The service road is necessary so that trucks, vans and emergency vehicles can access different areas of the park. Now these are real men! Seriously, the RMC guys are out in 0-degree temperatures all day - kudos to them! I'll be inside, by the fire, with some sweet pink alcoholic beverage (with a little umbrella, of course ). Close up of one of the construction guys. It's a little difficult to see in the pic, but he's outfit in climbing gear. Brandon **assures** me that the snow will be removed from the tracks before running trains. You can really see the profile of a lovely hill there. We're are all going to be screaming over that! The "bents" are mostly constructed on the ground, and then lifted into place to be bolted up to the ride. It's such a manual process, but RMC is really kicking ass. It's an odd feeling seeing this ride - it is at the same time a pretty small foot-print, but also an imposing structure .. and it's not even finished yet! Bulldozers are cool. When we arrived, this bulldozer was smashing against the (frozen) ground - probably trying to loosen it up a bit. Brandon wasn't sure exactly what is being dug out there, possibly utilities or other mechanical components. One cannot under-estimate the size of the tunnel .. it's actually more like a cavern. It's huge! What is probably one of several little work stations for trimming and shaping wood. Work hasn't progressed too far on the station, but the renderings show how great it will look once complete. Only the framing will be kept from the old station, other than that it's going to get extensively remodeled. Tromping through the snow! Marcus Leshock from WGN came by to talk to us .. he was mildly interested in Goliath, but really just wanted to say "hi".... Joking aside, Marcus is a big-time coaster enthusiast, and is also staggeringly excited about this ride. (He's current number 1 is Outlaw Run). A random salt truck.
  9. The forecast for Wednesday (for the construction tour) is 10 degrees .. the overnight low (Tuesday night) is -4, so really on Wednesday morning it'll probably be 0-5 (and then there's wind-chill on top of that). Fortunately the forecast is calling for sun, so the photos will look great - but dress very warm! Cameron.
  10. I don't play Tapped Out - but today (January 14th) marks 21 **years** since "Marge Vs The Monorail" first aired (according to IMDB). That was really the Golden Age for that show!
  11. I realized that I forgot to post this - taken from the old Iron Wolf exit ramp (which will be re-used)..
  12. TPR was invited out to the park this morning for a delightful construction tour of Goliath - and when someone says "take photos of Goliath woody erection", we say "YES". Goliath will be the tallest, fastest and steepest wooden coaster when it opens in "late Spring" of 2014. It's still just a baby, but they grow-up so fast. We also got a few inches of lovely snow yesterday, which makes for some rather pretty photos.. The train engineer will be treated to this lovely view each time he pulls into the station. Small panorama of one end of the site. The frame from the Iron Wolf station will be reused, but the platforms will be expanded. I suspect we won't recognize this station once it's done. Some wood. Goliath is a wood coaster The old Iron Wolf queue will be reused too (although the snow will be removed before opening day). Additional queuing space will be created on the midway where the karaoke booth currently stands. This "box" is sunk below grade and will house the lift-hill motor and other machinery. A little snow won't stop these guys .. I mean that makes for some crappy headlines "SNOW-FLAKES DELAY WORLD'S TALLEST FASTEST AND STEEPEST WOODEN ROLLER-COASTER". This bent was being actively worked on - the construction equipment was dropping some beams into place. The tunnel - into which the first drop plunges. This tunnel will be 15 feet below ground, and is what will give us the 180 foot drop. EXCLUSIVE REVERSE-POV SHOT!! For the wooden-stake enthusiasts (don't be shy, we won't judge). An American Eagle car being worked on in the maintenance shed. I stood by this crate of harness parts for over an hour, but no-one jumped out of it I see cute little Whizzer cars over there! Goliath thanks to Brandon Bruce and the rest of the staff at Six Flags Great America. We know these little tours can be a bit disruptive, but we really appreciate getting a glimpse of all the hard work being done. The excitement is growing as quickly as the ride itself!
  13. Great report! I *love* NYC and don't get to visit anywhere near as often as I'd like. Thanks for the delicious pics
  14. More envious, I cannot be. Please give Olympia Looping a big awkward hug from me Cameron.
  15. For a number of years they ran the water (blood red) during Fright Fest only, but for the last 5 or 6 years they don't even do that anymore.
  16. The videos are rendered at 30fps (frames-per-second), clearly the new coaster will have 30 pops of air. (Joking aside - great catch with that Iron Rattler postcard on the pin-board..) Cameron.
  17. Maybe they'll call it Wooden Wolf? Well - maybe not. I have to admit that part of me thinks it's a pretty strange (reckless? foolish?) for the park to be installing a major coaster just two years after X-Flight (which certainly still seems to be bringing people through the turnstiles). But then there's another part of me that's rather quite excited by the possibility of a cute, little, Insane-O-Wood from RMC, Intamin or even GCI. In fact if this does indeed come to fruition, then you're likely to find me doing naked cartwheels up and down County Fair.. Cameron.
  18. Don't forget that the Iron Wolf plot borders the employee car-park - there's a massive amount of space there to expand for a bigger coaster. (Hopefully if they do build there, it won't get the Scream treatment..) Cameron.
  19. It cracks me up how upset some people are getting that the park is "messing" with the enthusiasts .. just enjoy the game. Of course these will be the same people who'll be upset when the new ride turns out to be a show or some kid/family thing. Enthusiasts - where no good deed goes unpunished Cameron.
  20. I'm a bit puzzled by all the resistance to possibly improving Eagle with a RMC treatment .. Eagle is big, old, slow, and presumably fairly expensive to maintain. Sure it's fun, and for a wooden coaster its age and size it actually runs pretty well - but why no love for RMC who could take American Eagle from "fun" to "thoroughly awesome"? (Besides, is this an actual rumor, or still just "maybe they could do it, I guess"??) Personally I'd love to see the ride overhauled .. keep the "out" section mostly the same, but then some patented crazy-ass RMC insanity for the "back" section. Of course I don't think it'll actually happen, certainly not next year; but it sure would be great Edit to add: I do feel that if Eagle ever does get major work / re-profiling, it would be a shame if it became a 54" ride (it's 48" now, correct?). Cameron.
  21. Six Flags St. Louis had advertising printed on the line painted on the pavement that marked the smoking area. (I'm actually not joking - it was pretty gross). Cameron.
  22. ^ Oh man - don't get me started on Rodney: He hates pinball and keeps calling me "Dumpling"! He's going to meet his demise at some point .. (Animal Crossing needs hired assassins to "take care" of some of the more loathsome animals..!)
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