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Accommodating Restraints - and unaccommodating restraints


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Simple - which restraints are friendly or unfriendly for overweight people in your opinion? For the record, I've only been walk-of-shamed twice, on CGA's Woodstock Express and Cedar Point's Wicked Twister. I fit on El Toro (50/50 chance or so that I have to be stapled by a ride op) and MF/TTD (sometimes need a bit of help with my seatbelt, but nothing horrible.)

 

Friendly-

-Morgan hyper restraints - I am a relatively large person, but in some seats on Steel Force I can lower the bar completely (to the last ratchet.)

-Arrow individual lap bars - Well, these are pretty accommodating, but Magnum XL-200's seatbelts are now shorter (although ride ops say there is plans to re-lengthen belts.)

-Arrow OTSRs - Buckle the belt and you're good to go!

-Buzz bars - Need I say more? They are a bit narrow between the bar and the seat, but I don't see many situations in which they couldn't be pushed down.

 

Unfriendly-

-Intamin T-bars - Mainly the seat belts on this variety are short. Combined with several accidents which have been blamed on rider size, this restraint has gotten less and less accomodating.

-El Toro's U-bars - These restraints come up higher than the T-bar, hitting your stomach higher up than the T-bar and sometimes requiring one of the few staplings which I'll visually react in shock to. The ride's seatbelts are fine, but the sensors are notoriously strict. I could swear that the real thing is worse than the test seat (which is the opposite of most rides that I've seen, where the test seat is somewhat smaller.)

-Intamin's old OTSRs - Combined with the right seatbelt and buckle position (Possessed at Dorney, new belts on V2 at SFDK), these restraints are not that bad. Combined with horrible belts (KI's Drop Tower, where I can barely buckle the belt) or downright atrocious belts (Wicked freaking Twister...), these restraints are the least accomodating restraints that I've experienced. My only walk of shame on a non-kiddie coaster was Wicked Twister, as I've stated.

 

Questions - I've never been on an RMC hybrid, and I've never gotten a clear answer - how are NTAG's and IRat's restraints? Better or worse than El Toro? And also, how are Goliath/Outlaw Run/Steel Medusa's? I've heard they are better than El Toro's but I still want answers. Finally, is Lightning Run better or worse than Toro's bars?

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I've had no problems with Intamin's T-bars (or any of their restraints, for that matter) EXCEPT for Bizzaro at SFNE. I didn't get walk of shamed, but it was certainly a tighter fit that I remembered from other T-bars. I'd swear the yellow padding hunk is beefier on that ride and I'm not sure why that is.

 

My upper legs are like tree stumps and the only restraints I've consistently had issues with were B&M's godawful clamshells. They'll close enough to let me ride but those restraints always seem to land at the midway point between my knees and my torso. It makes for some uncomfortable airtime as it's a very odd area to have forces exerted on.

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I've had no problems with Intamin's T-bars (or any of their restraints, for that matter) EXCEPT for Bizzaro at SFNE. I didn't get walk of shamed, but it was certainly a tighter fit that I remembered from other T-bars. I'd swear the yellow padding hunk is beefier on that ride and I'm not sure why that is.

 

My upper legs are like tree stumps and the only restraints I've consistently had issues with were B&M's godawful clamshells. They'll close enough to let me ride but those restraints always seem to land at the midway point between my knees and my torso. It makes for some uncomfortable airtime as it's a very odd area to have forces exerted on.

 

Clamshells are weird. They feel insecure. I fit into 2 clicks (minimum) comfortably and 3 clicks relatively stapled. I might be able to make it to the 4th click, but that is VERY uncomfortable. Or maybe I'm confusing that with B&M OTSRs, into which I can super-staple myself with some help. As for the "hunk of padding", it is also thicker on El Toro. Maybe it has to do with with Bizarro being converted into U-bars of a sort. It was, right?

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As far as RMCs, I can only speak to Outlaw Run, which has undergone many changes. Prior to the Texas Giant incident, I don't recall ever seeing a walk of shame. As a tall guy, I was consistently uncomfortable due to the hard shin bar (which has been altered). But I never had to worry about fitting.

 

About a week after the Giant incident, they adjusted the go/no-go sensors to require a much lower position. Rumor has it that there was a walk of shame nearly every train. (There are a lot of big folks in the Missouri/Arkansas area, self included...) Just before TPR went to SDC last year, they revised the sensors yet again adding about an inch of room. I also went to the park in this time frame. I was never denied a ride, but there were several times I was asked to push in order to turn the light green.

 

This year, the restraints have been heavily modified, and seat belts have been added. They aren't very long, but they aren't Millennium Force short. (They use the same Stubai buckle which seems to confuse the GP.) It seems to me that they raised the go/no-go position again, as I have not once needed to staple myself in order to dispatch.

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-Arrow OTSRs - Buckle the belt and you're good to go!

I've only ridden corkscrew and iron dragon but, especially on corkscrew, I didn't find them accommodating in terms of height. I'm not particularly tall, so I found it quite weird how I kind of had to slouch for it to close properly.

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As for the "hunk of padding", it is also thicker on El Toro. Maybe it has to do with with Bizarro being converted into U-bars of a sort. It was, right?

 

I've never had a problem with El Toro! I lived 10 miles from that thing for years and rode it a million times, never once had an issue. Hell, my brother-in-law who's twice my size didn't even have a problem. Bizarro, though, I dunno why. They weren't U-bars when I rode, either. It's worth noting I rode Bizarro the first year it was converted from Superman. Lucky for me it was a crappy weather day but no wind, so lines were nonexistant (2 train wait for front) and all of the effects were at full blast, yes, including the insane flamethrowers.

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It's weird how everyone looks down on the original Intamin T-bar restraint, even though Millennium Force has been operating with them for 15 seasons now. After visiting Cedar Point twice (2012, 2014), I've never witnessed anyone get the walk of shame (and there were some not-so-skinny people in line). I don't know if it's the ride, the ops, or both, but why can MF operate with them consistently over a number of seasons while the Supermans can't?

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Intamin's older style OTSR's are very unforgiving, but their newer style thin strap OTSR used on some rocket coasters is far better.

 

Never had a problem with B&M restraints, but their vest type system is just so comfortable. Feels like being hugged by John Wardley.

 

The only restraint system I cannot abide is the S&S Lapbar and Shoulder grip combo. If you have even slightly broad shoulders, it is agony.

Edited by Joshuadrooney
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as a nearly 6'4 skinny SOB, the only restraints i've actually had a problem with are B&M OTSR's

 

Seriously, i fit (Tightly) into arrow looper trains but the OTSR comes over my chest perfectly with no shoulder issues, on B&M's i have to almost compress myself down to get the last click of it to reach my chest, rather than stick out at a weird angle (Which then causes it to repeatedly try to close down that last notch during the ride on the loops and such, which -really- sucks)

 

Even old tightening-during-the-ride wingrider trains don't cause me the same trouble, i rode gatekeeper all day at media day then a visit not long before the change and it wasn't nearly as bad as the occasional ride on something like raptor (Which is the invert i've had the most issues with that on)

 

Most accommodating is weirdly the vekoma flyer restraint. that thing has to be an engineering nightmare, but i always felt like i could stay in my seat all day on x-flight (Firehawk now) without any problems.

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Really interested in this topic as I am a bigger guy...and my kids are getting to the point where they want to really explore coasters. Trying to lose some weight in order to be able to ride more. My home park is SFSTL and I know, at this moment, the only 4 coasters I can get on there are The Boss, Ninja, Mine Train, and the always unfun Boomerang. The lapbar on The Boss is easily the most accomadating restraint I have ever seen. The over the shoulder restraints on Ninja and Boomerang are great too. Mine Train is the Mine Train. 25+ pounds ago I had issues on Wildfire at SDC, but they have the "Big Guy" seats in the middle of the train...and that was great (but a bit embarrasing). I know the best thing for me (in many ways) is to lose the extra weight...but, I love this thread.

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I'm pretty thin, so I've never had an issue with a restraint, but I have to say that Le Démon's restraint at La Ronde (Mondial Roll-over) are probably very unaccomodating for some bigger body sizes, because there's usually one or even two, sometimes, walk of shame on almost every ride.

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I'm a big guy, but I managed to squeeze into a few non-big boy seats on B&Ms. Not comfortable, but what are you gonna do? I only managed to get into an Intamin T-bar once, and it was super uncomfortable. Thank GOD that it was a good ride to distract the feeling (Millenium Force).

 

Also B&M hyper trains are a pretty tight.

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I had a really tight fit on lightning run at Kentucky kingdom a couple months ago but I am around 6'5 and 280 so that one was probably just me. Also, had to have some help on el toro on the same trip(it was a rough trip for my thighs between those two and skyrush). Never had a problem or needed any help on mf and dragster at cedar point so I never found those two unaccommodating like other people seem to.

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There are tricks which can be used to fit in some restraints.

I've seen people didn't fit in el Toro which I assumed being lighter than me. I streched my body upwards so that the T-bar hits the lower part of my stomache. "Lifting up" that "moveable" part of the belly also helps quite a bit. Finally holding the hands at the wagon in front and pushing the bar with elbows, I can create a substantial force to push the bar down as much as I need and never had a problem with such bars.

On some coasters I've seen people do the walk of shame which had their pockets full of stuff and probably could have fit if they'd emptyd them.

 

Another story is the seat spacing. On some trains my knees can hit the seat in front of me. And on woodies, especially if the surface in front is metal, that can be quite painful.

Also a problem are U-bars which are very narrow so the side of the legs hits them, again especially on rattling woodies.

 

B&M bars are tight but just ok. With the exception of Shambala (Port Aventura, Spain) which seems to have different bars or seats.

 

The worst restraints are magnum XL2000. They are not flat like most others but round so that the force of the ejector airtime concentrates in a very small spot making that rather painful. I Wonder how expensive a change of the shape of those can be.

 

PS: The problem of the belts on MF is not only that they are shorter than those of el Toro, but also the sideway location of the clasp. So you can't really pull the belt together like on other rides where the clasp is in the middle.

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Now that I think of it, the restraints on TOGO stand-ups are very awkward and uncomfortable. They are also terrible for small peoples (like me back in the time I rode Skyrider @ CW for the first time) because then your hears are right at the good height to be smashed back-and-forth on the barely padded restraint.

Photo by Steve Lizauckas from RCDB

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-Intamin's old OTSRs - Combined with the right seatbelt and buckle position (Possessed at Dorney, new belts on V2 at SFDK), these restraints are not that bad. Combined with horrible belts (KI's Drop Tower, where I can barely buckle the belt) or downright atrocious belts (Wicked freaking Twister...), these restraints are the least accomodating restraints that I've experienced. My only walk of shame on a non-kiddie coaster was Wicked Twister, as I've stated.
Yeah V2 used to be bad until they put new (and longer) belts on it. Wicked Twister at Cedar Point still had short belts as of last year and was walk-of-shaming people left and right. These were not fat people and they walked away with a more bewildered than shameful look because it had clearly never happened to them before. The way the restraints come down on you its not so much your gut/stomach that gets in the way its if you have big legs or thighs, so people who were just big dudes were getting denied. I've never been walk-of-shamed on anything before including V2 but it took the combined strength of me and the ride-op to barely get the buckle clicked on Wicked Twister, so much so that I didnt want to ride again and chance not being successful.

 

Another frequent offender is Grizzly at California's Great America. It has one of the worst restraint systems I've ever seen. There's the rider's seat belt, the lap bar, and then a seat belt that buckles the lap bar. There are actually extra warning signs in the station that the seats are less accommodating to larger guests and it's very common to see people taking a walk of shame on that one. Those over redundant restraints are the reason that Grizzly's dispatches are so slow that the ride op has to play "Jungle Cruise Skipper" and do standup comedy over the mic for the people stacking in the final brake run while they wait for the train in front of them.

I have a theory too that Grizzly gets such a reputation as a "bad ride" not because it's actually that bad but because after people wait 30 minutes for what should be a walk-on station-wait theyre just angry and take it out on the ride.

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Skyrush is increadibly unforgiving if you're skinny and have muscular legs... Gives me bruises every time I ride it, and before (When they didn't loosen the restraints) if the trains stacked for too long then it would begin to cut off circulation and actually made me pass out when someone refused to accept that they wouldn't fit...

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Skyrush is increadibly unforgiving if you're skinny and have muscular legs... Gives me bruises every time I ride it, and before (When they didn't loosen the restraints) if the trains stacked for too long then it would begin to cut off circulation and actually made me pass out when someone refused to accept that they wouldn't fit...

 

You see, I actually love Skyrush's restraints. I love the feeling of having nothing to the side of you or on your chest. You're upper body is completely free which makes for a pretty exhilarating experience, especially for first time riders.

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You see, I actually love Skyrush's restraints. I love the feeling of having nothing to the side of you or on your chest. You're upper body is completely free which makes for a pretty exhilarating experience, especially for first time riders.

 

That's a very good point, but B&M hypers have a similar concept and in my opinion are designed to be more comfortable. And since they're mechanically ratcheting restraints they don't typically tighten on your legs so its a more "free" experience

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^I naturally find B&M's much better but I would say that (although good enough) they don't quite provide the same freedom as skyrush's because of how you kind of "sink" into the seats on B&M hypers rather than sitting more upright like on skyrush.

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Anaconda at KD has THE WORST restraints! I was in second row and at the MCBR they became looser. I was still safe, but I will not be riding it anymore. They were Not unlocked, but the clicked one notch looser, scaring me half to death. Is this common on arrow loopers? LNM at BGW I have had great experiences with.

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Anaconda at KD has THE WORST restraints! I was in second row and at the MCBR they became looser. I was still safe, but I will not be riding it anymore. They were Not unlocked, but the clicked one notch looser, scaring me half to death. Is this common on arrow loopers? LNM at BGW I have had great experiences with.

 

I've been to KD three times and I've never had that happen before....In fact, as a bigger guy, I find that to be one of the easier coasters to get in. For the woodies and Flight of Fear, I have to tuck my balls between my legs in order to be comfortable.

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