B&M New Coaster Shake/Vibrations?

I've noticed the difference between front and rear seats as far as vibration goes. I couldn't help but pay attention to it on Sunday at Kings Island. A front row ride on Banshee was much better than the back, and row 15 on Diamondback 'bout rattled our teeth out. I think it's the worst it's ever been.

Vibration, though, is at least tolerable as opposed to general head-knocking roughness. Certain B&M rides deliver that especially on the back half, past the mid-course. Somebody mentioned Dominator as an offender, and I think Kumba and Alpengeist follow along. The worst of all, though, is Hulk. There's something about the way those rides are designed, in both track and restraints, that contributes to neck-banging roughness.

Funny, now that I think about it, I bet I've had hundreds of rides on Raptor and I can't recall feeling roughness or vibration in any seat on that one.

There are inconsistencies in this thread in terms of rides which have vibration issues and those which are totally smooth. So maybe there is more to the issue than just variance from ride to ride, seat selection and maintenance by the given parks. Maybe the size and shape of the rider is an issue as well. Different lengths and sizes of rods will act very differently when subject to the same frequency of vibrations. Some won't move at all and others will oscillate back and forth wildly. Vary the frequency of vibrations and what was still starts to oscillate wildly and that which was moving a lot becomes still. Maybe its the same with rides and different riders.

I rode Diamondback 13 times last Weds in various different rows/seats. I commented that I thought I could ride the ride for hours without any issues. Others here say it has a vibration/shake issue. I rode Banshee 20 times also in various seats and rows. Each ride brought the same vibration/shake that causes my head to hurt on Gatekeeper. Front of the train was better but it was still there. Never had that on Raptor in 50+ rides.

Do not recall that issue on Dueling Dragons, Scream at SFMM or Hulk at Universal. Though Hulk is the only one I rode more than 10 times. The vibration/shake issue was there for me on Wild Eagle a couple weeks ago though I only rode it twice.

Jeff's avatar

Totally agree. It's not even the same train to train, as I can attest when it comes to Banshee and Diamondback. Wheel and bushing conditions can dramatically affect the ride experience, and then multiply that with differences in ride experience front to back on the train. I don't think there's anything inherently broken about Hulk, but if they allow those spongy bushings to remain there, and the cars shake around laterally, it's going to be rough.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

Jeff said:

You would think, right? But sit in that back row and watch the cars shimmy around through the loops, pretty much every time.

I know exactly what you mean... The individual cars just jackhammer side to side all over the place. The past few years it has been really bad (when we have ridden it). Kumba on the other hand was really, really smooth our last visit... I don't think any B&M has been as bad as Hulk though that I can remember. Mantis may be close...

I have wondered if the wheel compound may have an influence on the bushing usable "life" before they need replaced, creating the rougher rides... But if you look at Raptor or Great Bear that use nearly all nylon road wheels, those rides are silky smooth (abrupt transitions aside). So I think that debunks my own theory.

Maverick at CP is another great example... The past few years, I had some TERRIBLE rides on it... Really bad in different seats. This year though, they must have done a more serious overhaul with the bushings/wheels because I never felt it so smooth since opening year. A few of my friends have said the same thing. I have ridden it more this year than the past few years combined because of how well it is running.

To this day though, Leviathan was by far the smoothest B&M I have ever ridden, and this was on a day where the high was mid 50's. It feels like it is gliding across the track without a single "shimmy". I wonder if it will feel as smooth this year as it did last if we head up there this October, since it is not as new.

Last edited by SteveWoA,
Jeff's avatar

I had not been on Kumba in more than a decade, then a few months ago I finally got a couple of laps. Back in the day, it was awful, but now it was fine. The only conclusion I can draw from this discussion is that the engineering is fine, but maintenance matters.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

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