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Dollywood Discussion Thread

p. 734 - Lightning Rod closed for remainder of 2020 season

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6 hours ago, thrillseeker4552 said:

That sounds about right to me. I can't wait to see hardcore enthusiasts melt down over whether this is still a wooden coaster or not. Grab the popcorn!

Took the words right out of my mouth.  This thread and some of the other forums are about to be nearly as entertaining as the ride itself

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There was a time in my life when I would have cared what Lightning Rod was made of.  So refreshing to give precisely zero effs. I just want to go to Dollywood and not worry about it being open! 

Yeah, the difference to the rider between I-Box track and the current track is really minimal. The only major difference would be that the ride would actually be open when you wanted to ride it and wh

You mean like this. . . (pssst, all wooden coasters run on steel rails, well, with the exception of the flying turns)   Also, who would have thought the first RMC coaster to get the RM

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34 minutes ago, u4icmusic said:

Here is a photo of the I-Box track on the left and the all-steel Topper Track on the right. As you can see, the Topper Track is on top of stacked wood, but it is still a steel coaster as the trains run on top of and under the Topper Track. It is a marketing gimmick. The Lightning Rod is not a wooden coaster. It is a steel coaster on wooden supports. Now, depending on how much Topper Track they replace with I-Box track, then Dollywood may not even be able to get away with calling it a wooden coaster next season.

iboxvstopper.jpg

giphy.gif?cid=ecf05e472xxh15gn45kxdvtxzs

 

If Dollywood wants to still call it a wooden roller-coaster because its got wooden supports, let them. Does it really matter if the park calls it a steel/hybrid/wooden coaster etc? Outside of a very vocal minority of enthusiasts, 99% of the park going people won't even blink. They'll only care that the ride that they thought was awesome on the one ride they managed to get, and then disappointment at a closed sign on the other visits isn't closed as often anymore.

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31 minutes ago, u4icmusic said:

 As you can see, the Topper Track is on top of stacked wood, but it is still a steel coaster as the trains run on top of and under the Topper Track.

You mean like this. . . (pssst, all wooden coasters run on steel rails, well, with the exception of the flying turns)

spacer.png

 

Also, who would have thought the first RMC coaster to get the RMC treatment would have been Lightning Rod lol lol. 

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21 hours ago, jarmor said:
(pssst, all wooden coasters run on steel rails, well, with the exception of the flying turns)

Been away and was just about to point that out.

All modern wooden (at least 50yrs) coasters have a steel top layer on the wood. Just walkover to Thunderhead and look.

"A wooden roller coaster is most often classified as a roller coaster with running rails made of flattened steel strips mounted on laminated wooden track."


RMC's topper is just a box instead of a flat plate.

"consists of replacing the traditional wood track top two layers with a 'steel box' . A new six layer laminated wood stack is attached to the Topper Track during the manufacturing process."

 

On 11/14/2020 at 3:57 PM, tndank said:
 
Screenshot_20201114-145836_Facebook.thumb.jpg.06cfb296fc52fd5219afbe090819caa7.jpg

Who is "Lloyd" and why should we believe him?

 

On 11/13/2020 at 6:20 AM, megan said:
Maybe part of the lawsuit settlement), 

What lawsuit? I've not seen any stories about such.

They are public record so please link to the info on it.

 

On 11/12/2020 at 4:32 PM, prozach626 said:
I wouldn't think the solution to Lightning Rod's downtime is to complicate the point of failure even more.

Again, assuming facts not in evidence.

There has been no credible source claiming problems with the launch, and many credible sources have repeatedly said the launch is fine.

 

 

 

So using I-Box in some sections would suggest the forces from speed and weight of the cars is causing problems, so they are making the track stronger in some places.

The I beam of the I-Box would be much stronger than 6 layers of pine and the Topper box.

 

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14 hours ago, TEDodd said:

Stuff

 

14 hours ago, TEDodd said:

More stuff

 

14 hours ago, TEDodd said:

Still more stuff

 

14 hours ago, TEDodd said:

Even more stuff

 

14 hours ago, TEDodd said:

Annnnnnnd one last stuff.

Holy crap, guy, there's a multiquote feature for a reason.

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Holy crap, guy, there's a multiquote feature for a reason.


And it doesn't work for crap on my phone.

I used it in forums long before it was a built-in feature, just copying and pasting from multiple tabs. And in newsreaders and email before that.

Then the people quoted generally can't/won't edit and respond to the quote. Instead the whole thing gets quoted multiple times.

So I practically gave up on multi-quote. The exception being to quote the same person multiple times.


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Maybe I missed it somewhere (even though it hasn't officially been announced), but I wonder if new trains are coming with this "upgrade" as well. I could see them purchasing the 2nd-gen RMC trains that may handle the elements better, but perhaps the current trains are a non-issue and once the track is upgraded, that's all the ride needs to operate consistently? I guess time will tell.

I can't get over the fact that an RMC is getting RMC'd. Anything can happen in 2020!

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On 11/14/2020 at 10:38 PM, Garet said:

giphy.gif?cid=ecf05e472xxh15gn45kxdvtxzs

 

If Dollywood wants to still call it a wooden roller-coaster because its got wooden supports, let them. Does it really matter if the park calls it a steel/hybrid/wooden coaster etc? Outside of a very vocal minority of enthusiasts, 99% of the park going people won't even blink. They'll only care that the ride that they thought was awesome on the one ride they managed to get, and then disappointment at a closed sign on the other visits isn't closed as often anymore.

I have to agree with you. I think at this point, guests just want the ride to be up and running smoothly. I have a season pass and on almost every visit this year the Lightning Rod was closed for at least part of the day, but mostly for the full day. I'm sure Dollywood just wanted to get into the record books when they made the poor decision to build another wooden roller coaster with untested technology by outside vendors. Had they built Lightning Rod as a steel coaster from the beginning, we wouldn't be having this conversation right now and the guests wouldn't have cared less if it was steel or a wood/steel hybrid with a topper track.

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"Lloyd" is the name of the character this park official played as a cameo in the Hallmark Christmas movie "Christmas at Dollywood" To be safe (cause I am not sure of the rules here) I won't name him but it's easy enough for you to figure out who in park management this is and this was at an official Q & A session at Saturday's Smoky Mt Coasterfest, which I attended. He did confirm that sections of the topper track would be replaced by I-box, stated that the launch should now be much more reliable,  and did not discuss the trains at all. I got the impression they firmly believe the track is the issue not the trains. He also said there will be trackwork done on Mystery Mine and indicated that they were looking at replacing the trains so that over the shoulder restraints would not be needed. Which as I am now sitting here with actual bruises on my shoulders from the airtime jamming me up into the shoulder restraints, I am only 5' 1" not sure how much that factors into it, is welcome news.

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Oh and a total loud Thank you shout out to the very very kind Dollywood staff who helped get my car key back to me (and the very kind anonymous person who turned it in after I was stupid enough to lose it from a zippered pocket 🙄) so that my son and I were not stranded 500 miles from home waiting for someone in St Louis to fedex the spare key to us.

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1 hour ago, teacherkim said:
I won't name him but it's easy enough for you to figure out who in park management this is and this was at an official Q & A session at Saturday's Smoky Mt Coasterfest, which I attended.

 


Then I have a good idea which I'll confirm later.
And if I'm correct, it's interesting he mentioned launch reliability as previously he was quite adamant that the launch was fine.

Was this event under an NDA? If not I think public comments like that would be attributable.

 

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1 hour ago, teacherkim said:

He also said there will be trackwork done on Mystery Mine and indicated that they were looking at replacing the trains so that over the shoulder restraints would not be needed

I swear, that would make the ride 10 times better!  I wonder what track work could be done? There is quite a bit of shuffling after the vertical drop.

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Then I have a good idea which I'll confirm later.
And if I'm correct, it's interesting he mentioned launch reliability as previously he was quite adamant that the launch was fine.

Was this event under an NDA? If not I think public comments like that would be attributable.
 
If it's who I'm thinking of you are correct, he had mentioned several times the launch was working correctly and smoothly.

However, it's very possible the launch as in the mechanism that performs the launch works great but the launch as a section of the coaster (including the track) was having issu e

Sent from my LE2117 using Tapatalk

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4 hours ago, teacherkim said:

He also said there will be trackwork done on Mystery Mine and indicated that they were looking at replacing the trains so that over the shoulder restraints would not be needed. Which as I am now sitting here with actual bruises on my shoulders from the airtime jamming me up into the shoulder restraints, I am only 5' 1" not sure how much that factors into it, is welcome news.

I'm 5'3" and had a REALLY bad time with the shoulder restraints; for me the issue was my head knocking back and forth against them. My 6'something" friend didn't have that issue.

So, yeah, I would love to see MM without shoulder restraints. I wouldn't mind something like the lap bars they have on Dare Devil Dive at Six Flags Over Georgia.

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On 11/14/2020 at 3:10 PM, thrillseeker4552 said:

That sounds about right to me. I can't wait to see hardcore enthusiasts melt down over whether this is still a wooden coaster or not. Grab the popcorn!

Bro. I literally just came to this thread to comment on how there are already arguments breaking out on some of the roller coaster facebook pages.

The ride will still kick ass. I'll take reliability over novelty.

 

  

6 hours ago, teacherkim said:

Oh and a total loud Thank you shout out to the very very kind Dollywood staff who helped get my car key back to me (and the very kind anonymous person who turned it in after I was stupid enough to lose it from a zippered pocket 🙄) so that my son and I were not stranded 500 miles from home waiting for someone in St Louis to fedex the spare key to us.

I mean... Anything to keep me coming back here to St. Louis would be considered a good thing, Kim. But, that's just me.

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If it's who I'm thinking of you are correct, he had mentioned several times the launch was working correctly and smoothly.


The video just linked confirmed my thought.

And full retrack, not just replacing sections with I-Box. That's a large expense.

And his word choice seems to confirm that the issue was track strength in the more "dynamic" sections.

Maybe we've found the limit of wooden track?


Regarding MM's restraints, at 5'9" they've never bothered me. Not that I'd miss them, just never a problem that they are there.
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On 11/14/2020 at 4:10 PM, thrillseeker4552 said:

That sounds about right to me. I can't wait to see hardcore enthusiasts melt down over whether this is still a wooden coaster or not. Grab the popcorn!

Definitely a hybrid hybrid.  Tallest and fastest hybrid hybrid!  

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2 hours ago, TEDodd said:

 

Regarding MM's restraints, at 5'9" they've never bothered me. Not that I'd miss them, just never a problem that they are there.

 

Newer gen trains without the OSR would really make this ride 100% better. It's quite rough now.

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To me it depends on how much I-Box track they end up using.

At the same time, all I-Box could still be a wooden coaster. Just depends on how you define things and I don't think there's a universally accepted one.

The point of I-Box is to mimic the normal wooden track (much like RMC's topper is). The design tends to follow the same rules as wooden track vs tubular steel.

It gets iffy when you get to inversions, and more due to the support methods/structures than the inversion. Could the be done with wood? If not then clearly not a wooden coaster. But if you could build wooden track in it's place I'd not have an issue thinking of it as a woodie.

That where the RMC'd cyclones move into hybrid territory. The inversion as they are couldn't use wood track. Meanwhile New Texas Giant is still, a woodie at heart.

And LR could have a traditional wooden track. Maintenance would just be a nightmare as the wood can't take the forces.

I missed when the pre-fabs were a topic, but I'll bet there was the same arguments about the use of plywood and adhesives instead of 2" pine boards and nails. (Plus the metal used to join sections)

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20 hours ago, TEDodd said:


 

 


Then I have a good idea which I'll confirm later.
And if I'm correct, it's interesting he mentioned launch reliability as previously he was quite adamant that the launch was fine.

Was this event under an NDA? If not I think public comments like that would be attributable.

 

It was not under an NDA , but he did joke about it and a few of the crowd were gullible enough to think he was serious, lol. He never stated anything he said was confidential, I am sure he was aware the info he gave out would be disseminated on social media

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14 hours ago, prozach626 said:

Bro. I literally just came to this thread to comment on how there are already arguments breaking out on some of the roller coaster facebook pages.

The ride will still kick ass. I'll take reliability over novelty.

 

  

I mean... Anything to keep me coming back here to St. Louis would be considered a good thing, Kim. But, that's just me.

Lol, I get that a but I do have this annoying job I have to do in order to earn money and my son has this annoying thing to finish called his last year in high school and oh yeah, we left Dad at home, he might notice we didn't come back at some point.

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1 hour ago, TEDodd said:

To me it depends on how much I-Box track they end up using.

At the same time, all I-Box could still be a wooden coaster. Just depends on how you define things and I don't think there's a universally accepted one.

The point of I-Box is to mimic the normal wooden track (much like RMC's topper is). The design tends to follow the same rules as wooden track vs tubular steel.

It gets iffy when you get to inversions, and more due to the support methods/structures than the inversion. Could the be done with wood? If not then clearly not a wooden coaster. But if you could build wooden track in it's place I'd not have an issue thinking of it as a woodie.

That where the RMC'd cyclones move into hybrid territory. The inversion as they are couldn't use wood track. Meanwhile New Texas Giant is still, a woodie at heart.

And LR could have a traditional wooden track. Maintenance would just be a nightmare as the wood can't take the forces.

I missed when the pre-fabs were a topic, but I'll bet there was the same arguments about the use of plywood and adhesives instead of 2" pine boards and nails. (Plus the metal used to join sections)

Any Rocky Mountain coaster with full I-Box is a steel coaster. There is absolutely no argument here.

I-Box coasters are all listed as steel coasters on the TPR Coaster Poll and will remain listed as such. Wildfire at the Kolmarden Zoo and Outlaw Run at Silver Dollar City both have zero-G rolls that are made using the Topper system and they are both wooden coasters.

Intamin prefabricated wooden coasters are just that, wooden coasters. Again, there is no argument here.

Lightning Rod will be listed as wooden for the 2020 poll and will likely not change for 2021 unless the application of I-Box is significant and changes the characteristics of the ride.

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