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Just an interesting note: Montezooma's Revenge at Knott's is the only Schwarzkopf shuttle in the U.S. that still operates in its original location---30 years this year, in fact.

 

I don't know about ones in Europe or Asia.

 

Eric

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How about the weight drop models not being quite as good as the flywheels? Or is the difference too miniscule? I was at Great America and I believe I chose not to ride Greased Lightnin' because I had already been on Montezooma's Revenge. I really wish I had known better.

 

And I think out of the 8 currently operating in the world, only 4 are in their original location. Too bad you guys on the Japan trip missed the one at Toshimaen.

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^ There is a definite difference between the earlier weight-drop models and the later flywheel ones. In my own experience, I find the flywheel launch to be a bit quicker. Of course, on those, the trains aren't braked on their way back through the station as the weight-drop ones were.

 

Also, if you notice, there's a slightly longer stretch of straight track behind the station leading to the back hill---perhaps that's one reason why trains aren't braked there.

 

Eric

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^ Nice video. Just after the three-minute mark, you can see why The Bat had its problems---those cylinders came awfully close to the track, and may well have hit on some occasions. You can see why banking the track on later models was a good idea.

 

The more I watched, the more I realized what a great idea the suspended coaster was. Honestly, I enjoy them more than inverted coasters because of the swinging sensation. I truly believe that this was one of the best coaster ideas ever, and am grateful to have one of the best in my own back yard (Ninja at SFMM).

 

Eric

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^ This is a relatively simple explanation, but basically there's a huge (read: heavy) flywheel turning at a high rate of speed. A clutch mechanism engages when the button is pushed and that pulls the cable forward. The cable is then released once the train has reached proper ride speed.

 

This whole flywheel/clutch setup replaces the dropped weight. Notice the lack of that big, hollow tower under the first reverse point on flywheel-launched models (that's a good way to tell what kind of launch that particular ride is).

 

Eric

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The bat flew sparadically its initial season. Luckilly it was operating the week that I visited the park. I will never forget my first ride on the Bat, it was such a unique experience compared to coasters of the past. The only thing to rival that unique experience was the original Batman: the ride at SFGAm.

 

Anyways here is the ride in action.

 

You can clearly see some of the problems with the Bat in 4th picture down. The track is flat and the train is almost 90 degrees.

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Thanks. That makes more sense. I've only been on one Schwarzkopf launch coaster: the defunct Greased Lightnin' (I still call it Tidal Wave) at California's Great America. That was a weight drop launched coaster. Man, I wish more parks had these coasters, as they were so much fun. It's a shame that many are not operating anymore.

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After Arrow did all the research and testing of this great concept Vekoma came up with this...

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you can see that this ride was licensed to Vekoma from Arrow.

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Vekoma's marketing piece for their "Swinging Turns" ride. Brochure from IAAPA convention mid 80's

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Here's a quick update from a couple of manufacturer's IAAPA brochures.

 

The one below is from OD Hopkins , makers of Sky Rides (the county fair kind), Log Flumes, Rapid Rides and Steel Coasters (the county fair kind...lol) IMO OD Hopkins is the poor man's Intamin.

 

And speaking of Intamin, if you love Drop Rides, Water Rides, Dark Rides and motion based Simulators Rides, check out the link below to see the updated Intamin - Ride Trade IAAPA brochures that feature all those rides.

 

Intamin - Ride Trade

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^ Back in May 2005, my mom and I took a trip to Amarillo, TX to work with a distant family member on a geneaology, and we had a few hours to go out to Wonderland Park---a rather ghetto park, if you ask me.

 

There, of course, is the Texas Tornado, OD Hopkins' first major coaster. I was looking forward to riding it, but unfortunately, it was down for its pre-season maintenance.

 

I've heard varying stories about the ride. Other Hopkins coasters (at Ghost Town in the Sky and Adventureland) haven't had much press, so I don't know much about them either.

 

Is OD Hopkins still in business? I've also heard (yeah, I hear a lot of stuff) that they did go out of business sometime back. What is their status?

 

Oh, and again, thanks for sharing your stuff. It's amazing how much is out there!

 

Eric

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^OD Hopkins is no longer in business, that's why so many chute the chutes water rides made by them are either up for sale or being torn down due to maitenance woes.

 

Great updates Shane, Even though I didn't exist when most of these old brochures and parks existed, I still find it interesting to see just how the amusement park business has grown! Thanks for taking the time to share it with us!

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Ah yes, my first job...was a small park, even smaller than Carowinds...it was off HWY 27 in Davenport,FL..I remeber the Hurricane, loved that ride, however we dropped the Florida part from it after it became Boardwalk and Baseball...and the Zoomerang was called the Double 'O'...Lots of good times... I still have a small piece of the boardwalk itself somewhere.

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I never knew Sandor worked for Hopkins, or that Intamin had offices in Berkeley. I've really learned interesting stuff from your archives, Shane. That's too bad that Hopkins is gone already, but from pictures I've seen, their roller coasters were some odd looking contraptions.

 

^and welcome to the forums (or your first post)

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OD Hopkins, the Seguay (sp?), and Adam Sandler....are all my state has contributed in 20 years. I apologize on behalf of NH.

 

Aside from that...is there any way we can nominate Shane for TPR contributor of the year? (I swear the man has sold his soul to the devil for all the vintage scans.) Shane, you RAWK...got anything on La Ronde?

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I love doing it....I have been saving this stuff for years and it is great to share it with others that really find it interesting...Lots more to come!!!

 

Unfortunately La Ronde is one of my smaller files

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AUSTRALIA'S WONDERLAND

 

Well I don't know too much about this park, maybe our friends down under can shed some light and history about this park that is now gone.

 

I know it was designed and managed by KECO (the company that Paramount bought out) but the park always remained under a private owner, it never became part of the Paramount Parks.

 

It seems to have alot of similarities to Canada's Wonderland as far as the theme areas go. The Medieval Faire section of the park changes names several times to: Old Bounty Bay & International Plaza.

 

I am not sure what happened to the Intamin Drop Ride but the Boomerang was sold to Alabama Adventures

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