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TurnOfTheCentury

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Posts posted by TurnOfTheCentury

  1. I am definitely intrigued by the TTD mystery.    Based on what we know now, it's looking like a conversion to LSM launch?

    My guess is that they will be keeping the launch track and tower track (otherwise why go through the effort of first removing the brake fins and hardware, but leaving the launch track in place -- wouldn't you just take off the track as a whole and remove the hardware on the ground?).  I'm not entirely sure why they are moving the station unless the train dimensions are changing significantly or the launch needs to be lengthened (but I thought I read convincing math on TTD having plenty of launch length).

    I am secretly hoping that they will do a dual track loading station to TRY to get a train in place to hit the launch window on time -- given the likely small trains, hitting a 45 second or so launch cycle is key for capacity.

    Anyway, eager to see what they come up with.....

  2. 3 hours ago, coasterbill said:

    This is one of those things that I just ignore, not because it's necessarily wrong but it just strikes me as one of those things that someone said once and everyone just took it as gospel forever. None of us have any clue what the limitations are, and technology is always evolving. I'm sure it's possible if they want to do it. They can even put LIMs up a curved hill if they want to, Intamin does it all the time.

    Yeah, I agree.   I don't doubt they can find the length.  Just not sure the technology can get it up to 120mph or whatever (I bet it can - I just don't know of any ride that uses LSMs to achieve that speed - doesn't mean they couldn't.  It's only about 10 mph more than the Ferrari LSM coaster in Spain).  What I do have some doubts about is whether CF is willing to go right out to the cutting edge AGAIN with Intamin on LSM technology, on the SAME Ride when they went cutting edge and paid a steep price.....

    But, given speculation is fun, I think they will simply keep the same ride profile, maybe change trains (lighter trains?), and essentially just replace the launch system and move the line . . ..  (Maybe fancy enclosed light show like Montezooma?)

  3. Well, I initially thought they would re-evaluate the ride and make serious changes to the launch.... knowing full-well that had nothing to do with the accident, but when I re-viewed the capacity and maintenance logs disclosed in the state investigation you could tell this ride was a maintenance HEADACHE with very, very low capacity.  So, it makes complete sense to consider what to do with it.  But then lots of people made valid comments about the expense of all that... and would it pay off?  Then I saw what they are doing to Montezoomas revenge, and that, on the surface, seemed to have as little economic sense as TTD re-do. .... Now I'm just confused.  but it's cools that CF leadership is interested in not just abandoning historic rides.

    The obvious thing is to (somehow) convert it to LSM launch -- I just forget the math on whether they can reliably get it up to speed with a Ferrari World-type launch on the TTD launch length (is length the sole limiting factor or does the technology somehow tap out at a given speed?)- there is a substantial amount of post-launch straight track at the end of the launch and one could put LSM partially up the hill.  That seems to be quickest way to resolve the issue.  The reverse spike/launch idea seems way to complicated - not only are you building the spike, installing the LSM system, but you also now need to slide the station over or otherwise reconfigure the connection from the reverse spike to the launch because of capacity problems -  I don't think they could launch 24-person  (or bigger capacity) trains and the tophat wasn't configured for a long train?

    For me, the true dream is that they will repurpose the enormous top hat for a full circuit conventional coaster - somehow get a near-vertical lift up there and then build off the break run out toward the lagoons or something (I know, will NOT happen....)

    • Like 1
  4. hmmmm..... those markings at TTD.....

    the safest guess is that they are simply re-configuring the line area (not sure why that necessitated an entire down season, but maybe they needed the findings to come out, consider a variety of options, and finally execute on a plan....)

    I do suspect that they must have considered scrapping the ride because of the enormous costs and downtime on it.   But as much as a LSM or multiple launch like Pantheon would make sense if built TODAY, from a return of investment standpoint, it makes very little sense to invest in an entirely new launch system on this ride because of all the reasons others have mentioned (new trains, LSM system, control system, etc.... -- that's a many, many millions investment for a change that the general public wouldn't even notice and so how do you market that investment? )

    Now, I have to confess that the irrational fanboy part of me was hoping they would simply repurpose the tophat to create a 400 foot-full circuit ride (somehow)

    • Thanks 1
  5. Went to Tivoli for first time in my family's scandinavian trip.

    Both Grona Lund and Tivoli showed me what you can do with limited space, and still create great atmospheric, themed parks.   I thought Tivoli was just gorgeous: lush landscaping, well-themed, well-maintained, and just exuded old school charm.

    If the story is true, I can see how Walt Disney got inspiration from this park.   The park is much more than the rides, but we have a blast on the rides, especially Alpengast(?) coaster (and it's history) and the also really enjoyed Demon (I can't remember any of the names).

    Completely charming.

    • Like 1
  6. Visited Grona for first time last Friday.  

    Holy cow, what a fun, surprisingly well-themed little park, with really fun coasters!

    I loved it!

    Monster had a great themed line, efficient two-train operations, and the ride packed a punch!   Loved it's pacing, the foot choppers, and the final little airtime moment (which I never experienced on an inverted before).  The great gray color and cool supports only added to it.

    The sleeper hit for me was Jet Liner.  Wow: super fun Schwarzkopft, with great pacing, smooth as can be, and easy old -school lap bar train.   Extremely re-rideable.

    Twister was reallly fun in the back and well-placed.

    oVerall, extremely well done, fun, and far exceeded expectations (because I entered into it with virtually none!)

    • Like 2
  7. Makes me sad.   This was my childhood park back when it was still called Marriott's Great America (and before the Turn of the Century became The Demon, hence my name).

    The truth is that it felt like the park has been on borrowed time for many, many years, off and on.  I always wondered why it didn't ever get greater attendance?  Part of it is the region (there are a lot of competing things to do in the Bay Area, particularly outdoors), and part of it is frankly the relatively lousy ride investments.  While it's "sister" park in Chicago got the American Eagle, we later got Grizzly (smh);    Batman vs. Top Gun (now flight deck), Iron Wolf vs. Patriot (formely something else).   Nearly always the smaller versions.   There was never a true signature ride: Demon was as close as we got.

  8. I (obviously) have no idea what CP plans on doing with this ride.

    I was surprised to hear them preemptively say it would be closed for the entire 2022 season, and I initially would not have thought they would close the ride permanently.

     

    But then I think about this: II think they knew pretty quickly what the cause was -- the plate and bolts were recovered immediately in August 2021.  I would not *think* (?)  the fix to better secure the plate would require THAT much additional engineering and repair (given it's nearly 20 years of operation with those bolts, so it doesn't seem to a core design flaw).  The metallury report indicates that one bolt sheared off instantaneously (causing the second one to fail under increased load).  It could be something as simple as a bad bolt, or, if they imaged the other bolts and saw similar fatigue, you may need to increase diameter/ tensile strength of the bolts and/or add an additional bolt.  Now, since I'm no engineer, maybe that is a more complex engineering issue requiring Intamin re-design, test, manufacture the parts and design, etc.?  Same with the protecting the line: you could provide a higher side wall and partially enclose the line fairly easily?  And the damage to the track appeared limited to a brake bracket.  All these repairs wouldn't seem to require more than 1 year?

    My suspicion is that this accident has caused CP to want to consider much more carefully the future of Dragster.  We all know it has been a maintenance nightmare, and they attach tons of pages of maintenance logs to this report, along with its true hours capacities.  Its cost per ride has to be astronomically higher than any other ride in the park.  

    Maybe, just maybe, they are thinking: we got nearly 20 years out of this ride; it's expensive as hell; it's ridership levels are relatively modest in comparison to its cost; let's cut our losses and move on?

    • Like 2
  9. So I went to Magic Mountain for the first time in over 20 years on Saturday.

    I was surprised at how clean and relatively "lush" the park looked, especially in the area from Viper over to Samurai Summit.

     

    For me, the surprise hit was X2 -- I simply could not believe that first drop and the subsequent switchback hill (raven turn?) in the first seat. It may be the best first drop I have ever been on? I thought the entire ride was disorienting (in a good way) and spectacular -- and incredibly intense. I also have my first ever calf bruises from a rollercoaster ride. I left the park hoping that Schilke would find some way to make a next generation 4th dimensional ride with RMC technology/ design.

     

    I also thought Tatsu was excellent: a great layout, and the flying coaster design really works better soaring that far above the ground.

     

    Finally, Twisted Colossus is a blast: very different feel from the RMCs I have been on (Goliath and Steel Vengeance) with a ton of quick pops of air, and I loved all the head choppers from diving around the structure. Great ride.

     

    Although operations were slooow, I was impressed by the park and thought it actually looked "nicer" than what I remember.

  10. Please do not do what we know you're about to do and make it 7am because nobody wants to get to a park at 6am on their vacation except for crazy people.

     

    ... well that dream is dead

    It's worth the early morning. Seriously.

     

    I mean, we’re probably doing it anyway. How early would you suggest arriving at the parking gates? Do you think 45 minutes before park opening is good enough to get through the parking line and get into the park?

     

    It should be.

    I got there around that time and had plenty of time - was in park by 640am or so

  11. Finally made it SeaWorld Orlando for the first time.

    I really enjoyed the park: thought it was clean, well-themed, and pretty well run for a not-too-crowded-Thursday.

    Good set of B&M coasters:

     

    (1) Manta: thought it was pretty to look out, very well-themed, and probably the best flyer I have been on-- but my only comparisons on the Supermans. the Chinese one(s)? look amazing. I still maintain the pretzel loops are the most insane and possibly most intense elements I have been on, and I am always curious why they don't have a two on these longer rides - one to start and one closer to the end (I know u need more momentum/ height to make it work so it might be closer to the middle).

     

    (2) Kraken: surprisingly fun (for me -- I'm usually not a B&M inversion fest super fan). Love the trenches -- I presume they had water in them at some point? That would have been awesome. Good snappy inversions and great, intense final tunnel dive at the end. Change the restraints and I would ride it even more.

     

    (3) Mako: Really loved it. B&M is FINALLY getting comfortable with negative-G airtime. For me, it was a back seat ride, especially because of the first drop air and the third drop. But any seat was good. The attendants kept smashing down the lap bar unfortunately, but I really think this is the best B&M hyper I have been on (but I haven't been on Fury..... or any giga of theirs - just Raging Bull, Apollo and Nitro).

     

    Overall, great park. And, yes Ice breaker seemed to be in the middle of nowhere, but that might be the point. As they phase out the killer whale water shows, the part of the park is ripe for expansion of rides.

  12. Finally checked out Rise of the Resistance last Friday.

    Did the craziness (which I never do) and got to the park at 615am. Got Boarding Group 11 and was on by 820am.

    I actually think Disney did an amazing job with the organization and staffing of the park, given the craziness.

     

    The ride is truly spectacular. I don't want to spoil it, but for me the most memorable parts were BEFORE u boarding the actual "final" segment of the ride (in the small transports). I loved that Disney messed with the concept of multiple "experiences" of the ride during the line, and it felt immersive, like u were actually walking through the actual experience rather than waiting in line. It felt like several rides, not just one.

     

    Absolutely fantastic. Up there with Shanghai Pirates and Journey to the Center and Tower of Terror as the best Disney rides I have been on.

     

    As a side note, I also rode Flight of Passage in Pandora for the first time -- and I was BLOWN away but how much fun I had. Possibly the value of low expectations? But I loved it.

  13. THIS may be the one I look forward the most in 2020.

    I love what Intamin is doing here.

     

    It looks like they are designing almost-PERFECT swiss army knife type coasters to me:

     

    (1) lots of twisty craziness (especially low to the ground);

    (2) launches;

    (3) huge steep drops;

    (4) airtime;

    (5) crazy inversions;

    (6) and even miscellany like RMC type outer banked hills.

     

    It really feels like it has a little bit of EVERYTHING? (the parc asterix one in France looks even MORE amazing!)

    Other than perhaps Maverick, I can't think of too many other steel coasters with this kind of diversity (obviously, RMCs have it, and are likely the inspiration here, with two elements: the stall and the outer bank looking very RMC-ey)

  14. I was just at Great America this past Saturday and it was a fairly rainy day, so I can share what I saw about the "rain policy" with rides. First, I was pleasantly surprised how little "typical" rain affected ride operations (see below about the thunderstorm, however). Despite some pretty steady rain, every coaster was running in the rain, and the only one I saw with limited capacity was Raging Bull (two train vs. three) and Eagle (one side). The ONLY exception was MaxxForce, it was testing and ran a bit off and on in the rain, so it didn't appear that rain was a limiting factor, but rather mechanical(?) -- but I don't know for sure. As a side note, I had my best ride ever on Raging Bull, nighttime in the rain: more airtime in the back seat than I can ever recall!

     

    Now, a massive thunderstorm moved in and pretty much every coaster shut down as you would expect because of lightning concerns. But they got everything back up and running within less than an hour or so. I was actually impressed with park operations (although some of the dispatches, like on Goliath, remain terrible).

  15. Pantheon looks great to me. The layout looks excellent, with lots of cool elements. Intamin continues to evolve and do cool stuff like this (and what they are putting in at Park Asterix and Walabi look nuts).

     

    Now, APPARENTLY on the rumor mill, BGW may have purchased a two-coaster package from Intamin and there may be ANOTHER Intamin coaster going in in 2021 -- they just obtained a ~355ft (forget exact number) FAA height waiver and the distance between the soil bearing tests suggest a coaster, not a tower ride, with work to begin in January 2020. Will use the Drachen Fire station, and possibly a Redforce-like ride with additional things after the launch? Would be unusual for BGW to do back to back major coasters like this, tho, especially two launchers ..... but who knows?

  16. Looks pretty cool, and never look a Giga gift horse in the mouth.

    I enjoy B&Ms.

     

    That said, I have to confess that the layout doesn't look particularly inspiring, and it's a little surprising they would choose something with a profile somewhat similar to Diamond Back. I would have thought that like Millennium Force vs. Magnum or Fury 325 vs. whatever (Dominator?), they would go for a lower-to-the-ground profile and try to deliver a different kind of ride experience than Diamondback. But maybe there are only so many things you can do at that speed?

     

    Anyway, it will be all about the speeds on which it takes these elements. If it ends up being an airtime machine, no one will complain.

  17. I think the concept art looks incredible. But the part no one seems to be talking about and to me, the most fascinating thing about Epic Universe is the Las Vegas Bellagio Hotel inspired resort “INSIDE” the park with fountains and all. That looks amazing.

     

    The hotel does look cool, as does all the water and fountains in the huge "hub" (which is really the spine of the park).

    But the hotel is at the back end of the park overlooking the park, not so much "inside" the park anymore than the Disney hotels at DisneySea or California Adventure are "inside" the park.

     

    I, too, think theming areas directly to IPs of questionable longevity, like Fantastic Beasts and How to Train Your Dragon, seems odd, rather than simply having a "mythical" creatures land or something, but I don't think THAT many people care about the actual IP: they focus on "cool looking land, and/or great ride". For instances, I know very little of Harry Potter, but really enjoyed the two lands and rides at Universal nonetheless.

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