Had a blast on this at CoasterCon, all three of that park's wooden coasters are top notch. The brakes towards the end kill a bit of momentum, but the first half's really great. Pretty warped looking lift, though.
Comet is a classic wooden coaster. I still enjoy a good ride when in Hershey, but it just isn't as exciting as the other woodies in the park. Plus the line is always long. I guess because its the closest coaster to the entrance of the park, and a good family ride.
When i first seen comet i thought it was going to be lame, but that coaster took my breath away. It is my favorite classic wooden coaster. I love it. its one of the best. To bad it doesnt get as much credit as it deserves.
------------- Hershey park happy Hershey park proud so much fun stuff to see and do Hershey Hershey Park:)
The Comet has an absolutely fantastic first drop, as well as a good one right off of the first turnaround. The brake on the second turn definitely kills to momentum over the out-and-back section of speed hills that comprise the second half of the ride, but its still so much fun!
I noticed the bend in the lift hill its pretty scary, but the thunderhawk at dorney has the same bend in it. i believe the two coaster were built by the same company, it might be the normal design for that era.
The "bend" in the lift hills of both the Comet and Thunderhawk are probably there because of the coasters' ages. After time, the wood settles and I am sure that it can be quite costly to tear down a lift hill and rebuilt it just because its a little crooked. If you ask me, I think it adds to each coasters' personality.
And yes, both the Comet and Thunderhawk (as well as the nearby Phoenix) were designed by Herb Schmeck and built by PTC. How nice it would be to live within an hour of 3 schmeck coasters!
I'm one of those lucky ones... 3 Schmeck coasters with in 2 hours of me.
Comet and Phoenix (1946 and 1947 designs) actually share more characteristics than Comet and Thunderhawk.
Hershey's original coaster was Wildcat (originally named Joy Ride) and was a Schmeck design built in or around 1923... the same year as Thunderhawk (which was heavily modified in or around 1930). Not sure, I've always wondered how much Wildcat and the "original" (pre renovation) Thunderhawk resembled each other?
With WWII, and a shortage of materials here on the home front, Hershey Park did only the minimum work needed to keep Wildcat running. When the war ended, they did an assessment of the coaster and decided that it would be more cost effective to tear it down and replace it than to repair it. Schmeck (who they said was never really happy with his Wildcat design) was called in once again to design the new coaster, and in 1946 Comet opened and has been running (and a park favorite) ever since.
The trim on the 2nd turn around does slow the second half of the ride down, but when those trims are not on or not on heavily, the tran screams through the bunny hops to a wild end. Very little coasters can give the visual thrill of that first drop over the creek, espeically from the front seat.
------------- "I wasn't always this cynical, but then I started kindergarden..."
*** This post was edited by SLFAKE on 8/6/2001. ***
I was wondering how the Comet's ending would feel had the trims been turned off... I don't think I have ever ridden the coaster without those brakes on. One major thing that the Comet and Thunderhawk DO share- some of the effects of Herb Schmeck's "design genius" are compromised by trim brakes (the Comet's second turn, and the Thunderhawk's first turn & final speed hills). Thankfully, the Phoenix is unmolested by trims!
You're right about the Phoenix and Comet sharing a lot, although I think the Phoenix is most similar to the Great Escape Comet, while the Thunderhawk gives a ride much like that of the Lake Compounce Wildcat. I just consider myself lucky to have had the chance to experience 5 of Schmeck's wonderful creations!
I personaly cant wait to ride it again I will be visiting Kennywoond one more time at the end of August. I will be visiting Dorney and a lot more parks during the week. I actualy never got to ride comet at night so this will be my chane to. ------------- Inverted coaster coming soon to Valleyfair!