# B&M Question

Wednesday, April 11, 2001 8:17 AM
What is the purpose of the thing that is infront of B&M's looping, Stand-Up, and Hypercoasters? I've been wondering this for awhile so I would like to know. And is it for the same purpose as the thing infront of the Vekoma's flying coaster trains?
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Wednesday, April 11, 2001 8:21 AM
They are called "Zero Cars."

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Wednesday, April 11, 2001 8:21 AM
I think you are thinking of the "zero car."

Perhaps Rideman can enlighten us.
*** This post was edited by Neil on 4/11/2001. ***
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Wednesday, April 11, 2001 9:43 AM
Wow... that's creepy. :)

In most cases, I think the zero car is there just so you don't fall off of the front of the train when boarding in the front row. That was a good enough theory for me until I saw that Alpengeist had one, which obviously you won't fall off of since it's inverted.

Longer trains do have a tendency to get through inversions and over hills more easily, though I can't tell you about the physics that prove this (it's all RCT theory).

This was the one and only question I could think of to ask Walter or Claude at IAAPA, but I totally forgot to!

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Jeff
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Wednesday, April 18, 2001 4:05 PM
Actually zero cars have a serious mechanical purpose to them. With B&M Trains, each car trails the one after it like a trailer behind a car via a universal joint. Without the zero car, there is nothing for the front car to hang onto & wouldn't work. The zero car is fixed to the front car via an inline axial pivot only - no more 'trailering' effect here. If you look at photos of B&M Trains carefully, you'll notice the zero car & the front car never pivot towards each other in inversions. With Inverted coasters, the front car is a zero car with seats attached to it! Exactly the same goes for Floorless coasters. If you ride in the 2nd row, you'll see the seats in front of ya never tilt towards your face in inversions & the likes. Alpengeist has a true zero car to reduce the stress on the axial pivot & to allow more speed. I know this as built a model B&M Inverted & was confused as to how the front car runs without anything to hang onto. Studied a photo of a train on Raptor's Loop & noticed the front two rows were still parallel to each other, 'Eureka!'

Vekoma SLC trains are exactly the same, only in reverse. The zero car is at the back!

*** This post was edited by CoasterGod on 4/18/2001. ***
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Wednesday, April 18, 2001 4:30 PM
I get what you're saying, but whether the zero car has seats on it or not isn't what is so curious. Some do, some don't, that's the thing that is so odd. See Alpengeist vs. Raptor.

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Jeff
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Wednesday, April 18, 2001 5:33 PM
I think this was explained somehow back when Alpengeist opened in Rollercoaster! or Ace News. I will look it up tomorrow.

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Don't touch the watch.
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Wednesday, April 18, 2001 5:39 PM
I swear that I read in the Sandusky Register when Mantis first opened that the "zero" car had something to do with making the trains run quieter. Sort of like how the nose of a jet makes it very quiet. Of course, I'm not sure in any way on this.

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BreakersBoy
CP Reservations '00, '01

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Wednesday, April 18, 2001 5:59 PM
Actually i always thought that the zero car was either the catch for the chain or they had the chain dogs on them. I dont know though, i could be way off.

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CP in 2002, get to the point
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Wednesday, April 18, 2001 6:22 PM
It is areodynamic, and it looks really cool. I think it makes the trains look really neat.

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RCman4
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