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Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Fri Sep 21, 2018 12:53 pm

The Return of the Cyclone Racer to Long Beach?

It’s closer than you think. If you’ve ever wanted to participate in the bringing back of an old classic roller coaster, now is your chance.
Yes. It is possible thanks to a life time of work by Downy resident Larry Osterhoudt.

I can say that, having done the impossible by bringing back to life a roller coaster that was doomed to the ash heap. The success of the San Diego Giant Dipper project proved to me that anything is possible.

Please write to the following city officials to voice your support for Larry’s dream.

Jeannine Pierce city council District 2: (district2@longbeach.gov Phone 562-570-2222) and

Tom Modica Asst city manager: (Tom.Modica@longbeach.gov 562-570-5091)
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Larry Osterhoudt, of Downy in the Los Angeles area has been hooked on the concept of bringing back the Cyclone Racer, exactly as it was, even before Disney announced its plans to build California Adventure.
All this time he has been painstakingly agonizing over every inch of the plans that he’s recreated strictly from rare photographs using AUTO CAD. It’s all there. The layout, profile, his pier design. Even plans showing the smallest bolts used in the trains have been drafted.
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He’s even built a large scale portion of the coaster and the trains.
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The city Long Beach permitted Larry to start reviewing Larry’s plans at a meeting in October 2013 and since then, he’s been providing them with all kinds of statistics and studies as they demand. Larry has been doing this all on his own so it has been taking a while and every time he submits what they request, they want something else.

They haven’t shot him down yet, so one would say this project is still progressing, just at a snail’s pace.
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In late August of 2018, Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia solicited ideas for the redevelopment of the Long Beach Harbor, hopefully something to replace the failed Pike shopping Mall

Please write to the following city officials to voice your support for Larry’s dream.

Jeannine Pierce city council District 2: (district2@longbeach.gov Phone 562-570-2222) and

Tom Modica Asst city manager: (Tom.Modica@longbeach.gov 562-570-5091)

Mention of increased dollars for their coffers by having this there is encouraged.
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A general representation of the pier on which to build the Cyclone Racer and other attractions.
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The Cyclone Racer opened at part of the Silver Spray pier, later The Pike amusement park in 1930. It stood 85’ tall, same as New York’s famous Cyclone at Coney Island. It is 550’ long, 120’ wide from tip to tip but the bulk of it being a racer makes it appear far more monstrous in its size. The two tracks each make three complete laps rolling over 3500 of track all the while twisting and torqueing over and under itself. At the halfway point the trains switch sides adding to the disorientation.
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Despite its menacing appearance, Cyclone Racer would fall under the category family coaster. The ride was not so intense as to take away the thrill of the race. Shallow radius valleys provided strong G forces while wide long hilltops were designed to give the rider just a hint of weightlessness. Up until the 40’s there were no lap bars present in the trains.
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The Cyclone Racer closed 9/15/68 – just over 50 years ago.
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It was removed to make way for a bridge leading to new developments as a result of the recent addition of the Queen Mary the year before. It was later discovered new Long Beach master plan placed a bridge close enough to the roller coaster to necessitate its removal and that the bypass could have easily been placed elsewhere.
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The racer was designed by engineer and artist Fred Church. His roller coasters were always thrilling and always beautiful to just look at. Both Santa Cruz and San Diego Giant Dippers also come from Church’s drafting board. Rebuilding the Cyclone Racer would be like putting the best of both into one.
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This particular coaster had a very shallow rate of decline, from 85’ feet sloped 3500 feet. Larry is proposing recreating Church’s patented wood track design. He claims that altering this design in any way, the wheel to track relationship, or changing the structure would result in the train failing to make it back to the station.
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The Cyclone Racer appeared in many films, often substituting for Coney’s Cyclone.
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That contact information again: Please write to the following city officials to voice your support for Larry’s dream. Any doubt or discouragement should be shelved as it all boils down to what the authorities have to say after the final study.

Jeannine Pierce city council District 2: (district2@longbeach.gov Phone 562-570-2222) and

Tom Modica Asst city manager: (Tom.Modica@longbeach.gov 562-570-5091)

Re: Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:01 pm

Take a ride!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZXwsRNKsqoM

Re: Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:11 pm

Oh wow, that's pretty cool. I didn't know about this coaster. Thanks for the education! If this does come back, I'd go down to Long Beach next time I'm in the area.

Re: Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Fri Sep 21, 2018 7:02 pm

The Leave It To Beaver photo is funny, because... who fits three guys into a single coaster seat, anyway? :lol:

Re: Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Sat Sep 22, 2018 4:30 am

Why would anyone write to city council members about a project with no land and no money?

Re: Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Sat Sep 22, 2018 11:25 am

Nrthwnd wrote:The Leave It To Beaver photo is funny, because... who fits three guys into a single coaster seat, anyway? :lol:
That was the norm on the Cyclone Racer. It was bench seating. As long as you were thin you could fit 3 easily in there. I've interviewed guys who did it when they were a kid.

Re: Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Sat Sep 22, 2018 11:31 am

Jew wrote:Why would anyone write to city council members about a project with no land and no money?
No land is needed because it's 100% over there water. Investors are waiting the outcome of the cities decision.

Re: Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:38 pm

Famous last words..."Investors are waiting."

Re: Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Sun Sep 23, 2018 8:21 am

Jew wrote:Famous last words..."Investors are waiting."


That reminds me of an article on historic landmarks a :shockr: San Diego Architectural magazine did in 1980 when mentioning the the Giant Dipper: "Now there is talk of restoring the roller coaster. There always is.". Not to mention a whole bunch of other Doubting Thomas opinions and look what happened. Unnecessary comments are so easily dismissed. Sorry.

Re: Long Beach Cyclone Racer Rebuild Inches Forward

Sun Sep 23, 2018 8:35 am

You know, when I set out to build a model of Belmont's adandoned coaster in 1981, I had no idea what I was really getting into. Now it's been open for nearly 30 years! I've been building this recreation of the Racer since 2016 just for my own satisfaction, but now it looks like this could be history repeating itself.
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