# Bumper Car Voltage

Wednesday, February 12, 2003 4:39 PM
I was wondering if anyone knew how much voltage runs through bumper cars when they are running. I searched and I really couldn't find anything (although 90V seemed to be suggested, I wasn't made clear) Anyone?
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Wednesday, February 12, 2003 4:50 PM

If riding your bumper car in Europe you need an addapter;) Sorry could not resist.

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Jim Wolgamuth
WGCGTI

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Wednesday, February 12, 2003 5:04 PM
If no one knows, I'll have to just stick a volt meter onto two wires, or wire hangers and stick 'em on the floor and ceiling during the ride :)
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Wednesday, February 12, 2003 5:10 PM
Doing search of RRC there is thread on bumper car voltage and the concensus is that the voltage is rather low. Here is the link for the thread;

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Jim Wolgamuth
WGCGTI

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Wednesday, February 12, 2003 5:16 PM

ZNitroMan said:
If no one knows, I'll have to just stick a volt meter onto two wires, or wire hangers and stick 'em on the floor and ceiling during the ride :)

I can picture some one using a Simpson Meter(VOM), or a DMM on a bumper car ride. Plus I dont know how well that would work, because to measure current you have to break the circuit.
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So you believe that you are studying us, then kindly explain why you are the ones trapped in your seats.

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Wednesday, February 12, 2003 8:10 PM
I always wondered what would happen if someone touched the floor on the new style one's that are powered by an electrical floor. The voltage can't possibly be too high, otherwise it would be a liability waiting to happen.

~me
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Six Flags: "Catapulting shameless apostasy to a new stratum of excitement and entertainment!"

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 5:29 AM
Touching the floor would probably be harmless, since that's going to be the ground (electrically speaking as well as physically). However, touching the "ceiling" and floor at the same time could be a different story.

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--Greg, aka Oat Boy
My page
"Friendship -- more lasting than love, more legal than stalking."

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 5:34 AM
Just wondering...is it a delusional memory from childhood, or did they used to run with considerably more force *back in the old days*...seems like you used to be able to get a solid BUMP on a bumper cars, now they all (except for KG's) seem to run a LOT slower...SFMM's was the same on the I-5 as it was in the park...bumper-to-bumper-gridlock, no acceleration whatsoever...;)
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Thursday, February 13, 2003 6:05 AM
Both Camden Park and Delgrosso's have fairly new bumper cars and they are quite a lot of fun. Reliable runners, good speed, and satisfying bumps.

Kings Island's cars on the other hand are pathetic as are a lot of cars from the larger parks. Why is that?

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I started out with nothing and still have most of it left.

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 6:05 AM
Greg,
nelson is talking about the new kind of bumper cars that don't connect to the ceiling, a'la Buzz Lightyear's Astroblaster at Disneyquest (Or even WhirlyBall for those in the Chicago area)
which are powered by parallel metal strips in the floor.

If my hunch is correct, nothing happens unless you touch two strips at the same time while the power is on. This is the way to complete the circuit... and as you know, without a complete circuit, there's no electricity.

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 6:07 AM
Update: I did some poking around today and found a web page which includes a history of the Lusse bumper car. In that history it is suggested that the original Lusse cars were 110v AC and that the industry standard shifted to 90v DC. If that is the case, then I wouldn't be surprised if it's really 84v DC, the same as is used for many projection lamps, provided by simply rectifying standard AC.

I know that there are now battery operated models available, so I suspect that there are some 24v units out there now. So I don't think we have a definitive answer (anybody know anybody at Majestic we could ask?). But it seems that 90v DC is or at least was an industry standard.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 6:47 AM
A lot of the difference in the thunk available depends on the construction of the cars, not just the voltage used. Older cars had steel bodies with steel springs used on the bumpers. Modern cars have lightweight fiberglass bodies and air cushions. If you like the old cars, go to Knobels. They have wonderful vintage bumper cars.
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Thursday, February 13, 2003 6:58 AM
ThemeDesigner, thanks, I forgot about those.

Hmmm, so I wonder if it'd be possible to leave a car stranded by positioning it so that it's straddling only hot strips (or only ground strips) :)

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--Greg, aka Oat Boy
My page
"Friendship -- more lasting than love, more legal than stalking."

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 7:08 AM
When I worked at Great America, Rue Le Dodge had 5 settings in the back. They normally operated on level 2 (second lowest). On occasion they would run the cars for employees at a higher level after hours. However, after a couple motors burned out, they stopped soing that.

Actually, we used to play a basketball-like game called Rue-Le-Ball. Very fun!!!

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"Know thyself!"

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 7:08 AM
I've wondered that too, Greg. I don't know where the contact strips are placed on the cars, but I have to assume that it's geometrically impossible to ever be out of contact with a hot and a ground. I've never managed to do it.
I've wondered if maybe the same strip could alternate hot & ground, but that would seem much more dangerous that just alternating.
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Thursday, February 13, 2003 10:40 AM
The floor-pick-up cars have a minimum of three brushes on them (I think they actually have four) which are tied into a network of steering diodes...in essence, the power comes in through a full-wave bridge just like the ones used for converting AC to DC. That way, any pole can provide any current polarity, and the geometry, as ThemeDesigner suspects, is such that at least one brush will be on each pole. What the motor (and lights and everything else) "sees" is plain DC.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 10:49 AM
One time my bother and I took a ride on the bumper cars. We both sat in the same car. He took the wheel, while I stood up and climbed on top the car to touch the ceiling. It wasn't a pleasant experience. -But, there sure is a lot of volts running through those cars! lol

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YOUNGSTOWN 2010

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 10:53 AM
jkpark....

That's proof positive that Darwin's Theory of Evolution isn't always true ;) ;)

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--George H
---Superman the ride...coming to a SF park near you soon...
Currency tracking experiment... http://www.wheresgeorge.com (Referring to The "George" on the \$1 bill - Not Me)

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 10:55 AM
That is why there is the Darwin Awards for those that remove themselves from the gene pool in the most creative way.

Jim Wolgamuth
"Lord help me I love pudding"

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Thursday, February 13, 2003 10:56 AM

Tell me about it. :-)
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YOUNGSTOWN 2010
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