Do you wanna be a Roller Coaster Designer?

Monday, February 11, 2002 3:04 PM
I wanted to know if anyone else here wants to become a Roller Coaster designer? What are you do to help your chances? I have been creating my own designs, play RCT(helps a bit), get A's in physics and geometry!, fencing to earn a shcolership. O, if you're a coaster designed, what helped you?
Monday, February 11, 2002 3:40 PM
RCT is as close as I ever plan to get, really the chances of becoming a coaster designer are slim to none but if you want to trey more power to you sounds liek you are on the right track.
Does CCI know how to make a bad coaster?
Monday, February 11, 2002 3:43 PM
Well I would like to be a rollercoaster designer, but if I can't I want to be a stand up comedian
The Jokes on You!! Ha Ha Ha
Monday, February 11, 2002 3:44 PM
Man i have always dreamed to be one but i am just not good in math. I got a B on my last report card but i really suck. You have to be very smart in math and all and im not. I create me own designs as well. But i guess i will never have the skills in math.
Monday, February 11, 2002 3:46 PM
Im actually setting up to be a designer the roundabout way this summer. I am going to be running SOB at PKI and then when i get out of college, im gonna apprentice at PKI for ride maintenance. During that time, Im going to submit a design, and thats how my career will start.

all about PKI
SOB crew in 2002

Monday, February 11, 2002 3:48 PM
Well, I had thought about it for a period of time, but after taking some of the higher physics classes availabe at my school, I decided it was probably not for me.  While I'm sure I'm capable of doing it, two reasons keep me from pursuing it as a career:
1 - The chances of getting a job as a designer seems to to be low.  While I completely expect to have to "work my way up" in whatever field I choose, I'm not really sure I'd like to do anything other than design rollercoasters.
2 - Related the above point -- I really don't want to spend many years of my life in a job that I really hate to do when there are other jobs out there I would enjoy more.  Sure, I may be able to get a job as a designer someday, but I made a decision that I would rather look at other options.  I haven't completed ruled out designing for some type of amusement ride/mfg company -- there are more than just rollercoasters.

I'm pretty sure the mainstream degree is in mechanical engineering.  It seems to me that aerospace engineers could also find work in the industry. 


Rollercoaster -PA

Monday, February 11, 2002 3:50 PM
Best of luck to you all.  Unfortunately there are only a few positions out there.  But, of course there are only a handful of people in my position too.... so, you never know! :)
- Peabody
Monday, February 11, 2002 3:52 PM
I think all coaster enthusiasts go through this stage. Then, you realize that the designing consist a lot more of  "what is the anti-derivative of y = (x-l)/(3x-8)" than "Ooh, lets put an airtime hill here..." It's not fun. If you were a park owner wanting to submit a design to a coaster company, then it'd be fun. But the actual designing is mindbending math. And a lot of responsibility. I'll stick with RCT. :)
Monday, February 11, 2002 4:18 PM
Yes and no. I'm not so sure that I want to do the actual "engineering" of the coaster, though sometimes I want to the "design" (i.e. layouts) of the rides.

However, recently, I've become much more interested in the "integration" of the rides with the existing park asthetics (some might call this themeing). In about a year and a half, when I'll *finally* be allowed to become a Professional Engineer, I'm going to kidnap RollerGatorWoodie and we are going to show these so-called "theme parks" how to do their rides ups....for an affordable price!
--"Can you hear me now?.......Goood!"

Monday, February 11, 2002 4:26 PM
As a matter of fact, I would believe the first stage in building a roller coaster is actually "Ooh, lets put an airtime hill here...".  First comes the creativity in creating a rough design of what is wanted...  Then comes the math in making it survivable... 

Ever see the interview with the creators of Islands of Adventure?   The guy traveled around the country riding coasters and found out what he liked in them all.  Then he sat down with Walter and Claude for the Hulk, and told them exactly what he wanted....  He wanted a "launch right into a barrel roll", and a "giant cobra roll", and then a "big loop", etc...  He ordered it in coaster enthusiast talk, and B&M delivered the real thing.

I don't think when a designer sits down to build a coaster, they start out by saying "Lets start out with an anti-derivitave of (x-l)/(3x-8)!  That'll really get their noodles in a twist!" 

But, without a doubt, in the end, it does come down to that...

I'd Rather Be Riding Roller Coasters

Monday, February 11, 2002 5:01 PM
I made up my mind to try to pursue a career in coaster design/engineering, with a mechanical Engineering degree. That way I have something to fall back on if I don't get "in."

Sept. 11th 2001, Slayer released God Hates Us All. The song "Disciple" uncannily describes the events of that day, as well as the anthrax letters that followed.
--Slayer: Thrash band, or the next Nostradamus?

Monday, February 11, 2002 5:10 PM
P>ONT face=Verdana size=2>I>Man i have always dreamed to be one but i am just not good in math. I got a B on my last report card but i really suck. You have to be very smart in math and all and im not. I create me own designs as well. But i guess i will never have the skills in math./I>ONT face=Verdana size=2>/P>
P>ONT face=Verdana size=2>I agree with totally...Im not doing all that great in math myself but im really focused on being a coaster designer....I might hiring muyself a tutor/P>
Monday, February 11, 2002 5:15 PM
Opps forget that topic i made before......I wanted to say that im doing really bad in math to but im really focused on doing rollercoaster designing. I might hire myself a tutor 4 this summer.
Tuesday, February 12, 2002 2:38 AM
That's exactly what I want to be;) I think it would be awsome to be a rollercoaster designer, I could design new things and more!
Tuesday, February 12, 2002 4:44 AM

scanz said:
"  "what is the anti-derivative of y = (x-l)/(3x-8)" )"

x/3 + 5/9[log(-8-3x)].....yes, I have no life!

Tuesday, February 12, 2002 6:30 AM
Nice work, Antuan. =)

"Making it" in the coaster biz is just like making it in show biz.  You need a lot of determination, actual talent, and a bit of luck.  You'll need a degree, probably advanced, in Mechanical or Civil Engineering and you'll have to be willing to sit at the bottom of the totem pole for a long time.  There are probably not more than 25 people in the world who are at the level of "let's put an airtmie hill here."  One of my friend's brothers has worked for premier for *years*, and he's still at the level of designing brakes (although he did help design the brakes for B&R:TC).

The legend lives!

Tuesday, February 12, 2002 7:39 AM
I want to get a degree in Civil Engeneering. It involves designing and engeneering coasters, but I'm not in which of the two I'm interested in. I want to work for B&M (Hey, some dreams come true).

I also think, that if it's what you really want, and you have the determination, and you can deal with all the math and creativity needed, go for it. For those who are afraid of going into this business, don't be. If you think you can do it, and you propose yourself a goal, you'll get it. The risk is worth it. It may take time, but if you are good, you'll get it.



Tuesday, February 12, 2002 8:49 AM
I became an aspiring coaster designer when I was 12 years old.  I did tons of research on rides, took pictures, studied articles, did drawings... the whole bit.  I took drafting classes in high school, and as much math and physics as I could, then went to University of Illinois to major in Mechanical Engineering.

And then my math skills decided to take a walk.  For some reason, I just could not handle theoretical math.  I did fine in all the physics-related classes (theoretical & applied mechanics, etc.), but I couldn't hold my own in the math classes... which is at least half of the classes you'd take as a mechanical or civil engineering student.  So, after five semesters of struggling, I dropped out of the college of engineering.

On the bright side, I changed my major to English, which had been my best subject in high school, and I blew my GPA through the roof.  I guess this means I'll have to write a book about roller coasters now.

I certainly don't regret trying to become a designer, though.  I still love roller coasters, and I do plenty of vicarious living through RCT and NoLimits.  The market for designers is excruciatingly small, especially in this country.  But that doesn't mean you can't try.  Along the way you might discover some other careers you'd love and be skilled at.

Tuesday, February 12, 2002 9:22 AM
I love designing rides in the computer games that are out there, but I'd never be able to do the real thing.  too much math for me.  if you want to do it, go for it.  to those that say "it'll take too much work" or whatever, I say that the extra work that you have to go through makes the final job that much better.  I want to direct films when I get out of school.  do I expect to jump right in and be the next Lucas or (shudder) Speilgberg?  no.  I realize that there's a lot of work and that the extra work will only help.  if you can't bear through the extra stuff, there's no way you'll make it at the top.  good luck.
Knott's Berry Farm Cuba ~South Park
"Your proctologist called, he found your head!" ~Jerry "The King" Lawler
Tuesday, February 12, 2002 10:38 AM
I have always wanted to be a coaster designer. When I was a kid, I maid mud models of Big Thunder Mountain Railroad at both Disney parks in my backyard. Just sand, dirt and water and I could create my version of those rides. I also used garden hoses to create looping coasters :), I also have been an avid player with Spacewarp Rollercoaster since 7 years old.  All I can say is that if you really want to get somewhat (emphasis on somewhat) of an idea of how to design a coaster, get the game No Limits. It will teach you patience. It is not easy to build coasters in that game. Just think about how much harder the real thing would be.
I must admit that I'm with 2hostyl on the part with theming. I would enjoy working on the concept of a ride. The ride experience itself, queue line entertainment, anything to make the ride more suspenseful, and interactive.
The point is, yes I would love to become a designer. I just wish it would be as easy as we wish it would!
Gravity is your friend!

*** This post was edited by go with gravity on 2/12/2002. ***


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