Coldest temps coasters can run in?

What is the coldest temps roller coasters can run in? I was just checking a trip report about six flags america, and they were saying it was in the forties and worrying a trains not going through circuits for fear of the weather being to cold. I thought about that last year too, as i was at cedar point with my cousin at the last weekend. It was bitter cold or at least felt that way cause it was late october, but we rode millie at like 1100 and it was a fairly cold day, and when we completed the circuit it was just like coming out of an industrial freezer.

Now im not mentioning just any rides, but what is a cut off point, because all of them should have a cut off point because it is too cold.

Resident Arrow Dynamics Whore

A lot of rides here in the US operate at certain temps to prevent them from valleying (i.e. Deja Vu has a rather high temp limit comparitively). Overseas, a lot of coasters run in whatever temps the park is up for. In the Speed Monster thread there are pictures of the train cycling in a snow flurry.
I have seen numerous pictures from Europe and Japan that show parks completely open during snowy conditions. ***************(awesome site, by the way) has some excellent pictures of these conditions.

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Mamoosh's avatar
30.7 degrees. It's true...look it up!
Fahrenheit or Celsius, Moosh?
Mamoosh's avatar
F, or course. This ain't Europe! ;)
I think it varies from coaster to coaster. I know Magic Mountain's Ninja (Arrow Suspended) isn't cleared for operation if the temperature is below 60-65 degrees. Something to do with the lubricants in the wheel assemblies that are of a low viscosity due to the cold temperature which could lead to the potential that the train may not complete the circuit.
With little wind, Millennium Force can run empty down to about 50 degrees. Below that and weight or heat is required. As the temperature decreases, more of either or both is required.

There is a point where they can't run the ride any more. When the ride cannot complete the circuit when fully loaded but the wheels have time to cool off, then the ride cannot be safely run. Downtime where a train is stopped on the lift will allow the wheels to cool off. If the train cannot complete the circuit, then you will either have a rollback or an evacuation off the lift.

Jason Hammond's avatar
It was in the 30's or 40's when we rode the Kentucky Rumbler a few weeks ago.

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Jeff's avatar
I've seen Millennium Force run in the low 30's with heaters under the stations. Actually I think they might have been using those big gas things they use at football games on the sidelines. When you leaned over the gap between cars as you boarded you could feel this intense blast of heat. It was kinda cool. Still some of the slowest rides I've ever had though.

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I've ridden Beast in sub freezing and snow. They actually had to chip Ice out of the bottoms of the trains.

Chuck, Who was told that Face Off was good to 15* F even though it miss catches and valleys on cool mornings.

Most rides shutdown because the air system starts to freeze up. That is why you will see heaters under ride docks, because that is were most new rides have their air valves. Older rides and air driven rides, like S&S Towers, will have a preset shutdown Temp depending on the design of the ride.

Now on the wheel lubrication, unless it is a rebuilt train that has not been broke-in or the temperature falls bellow the normal temperature for the area where it is located, the mechanics can use different weights of grease to keep to wheels moving free. *** Edited 4/11/2006 2:47:05 PM UTC by JLT1997***

I've seen SFA use heaters under the stations on Superman and Joker's Jinx. They did this last year during Fright Fest. Is it possible to heat the rails on some of these coasters?

A day at the park is what you make it!

crazy horse's avatar
I thought that wooden coasters cant run in real cold weather because the wood will start cracking?

At least that was the reason dollywood gave us during christmas when they closed down thunderhead when we were the next ones to get on.) :

what you've just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard.
Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it.
I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

I believe SFGAm's Deja Vu has station heaters as seen here which allowed it to run with the temp. in the 30's during the "Last Blast" weekend a few years ago.
I thought that wooden coasters generally could run in colder temps than steel ones. I was at PKI for Fearfest about 3 years ago and we couldn't ride Vortex in the morning becuase we were told by park employees that it couldn't run below 50 degrees. Beast was open, though, like Chuck mentioned above.

One thing I always wondered was how Dollywood runs TN Tornado during their winter operation months.

They say Vortex and the other Steel can't run below 54 degrees but I've seen em run in the 40*s. Depends on how much Maintences is willing to put into it really. If they have the heaters ect they will run em. If not. They don't run.

Wild Adventures uses station heaters to run year round. It was in the low forties when I visited one New Years Eve and all coasters were running.


Lord Gonchar's avatar
S:UF at SFGAdv ran (albeit slowly) in the low 40's with high winds the day it opened to the public.

I saw an article back when Thunder Coaster (a Vekoma wooden coaster in Norway) opened and they mentionned it can run as long as the temperature doesn't go below -10 degrees celcius. Maintenance has to shovel snow and there's heaters for the trains and brakes.

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