Intamin AG Rides (Xcelerator, TTD,Kingda KA) question.

Why is it on rides like Xcelerator and TTD the track is short? its like 20 seconds and you are done after 2 hours of line what kind of fun is that? you spend more time loading the car than you do on the ride why dont they add more twist and turns make it more fun?

DantheCoasterman's avatar
I'm not sure, but my best guess would be money. Plus, wouldn't all that speed that you get on TTD and KK be too extreme to continue through more laterals and negative g's?

BTW, for those who have managed to get the credit for KK, does the camelback hump after the main top-hat (hill) provide any airtime? Just curious....

This is a somewhat tired subject, and XLR8TR has overbanks after the top hat. Rides like TTD and KK were built with height and speed in mind.

Winningfreak said:
Why is it on rides like Xcelerator and TTD the track is short? its like 20 seconds and you are done after 2 hours of line what kind of fun is that? you spend more time loading the car than you do on the ride why dont they add more twist and turns make it more fun?

You know, if you thought your questions out thoroughly once in awhile, you could easily answer your own questions.

Xcelerator is short solely due to space constraints at Knott's Berry Farm.

Top Thrill Dragster and Kingda Ka are short due to space constraints as well as their astronomical costs. Think about it. If Top Thrill Dragster cost $25 million for a launch, top hat, and brakes -- how much do you think the price would have increased by to lengthen the track by just a little bit? A LOT.

Stormrunner has lots of elements after the top hat. (But it's still only about 40 seconds long.)

DantheCoasterman's avatar
What was the price tag on Storm Runner?
Many opinions about the topic, but you must experience a ride like TTD and KK before you can judge anything. I fell in love with the shear speed and acceleration you experience on TTD's launch. It is out of this world and you just can't get that feeling anywhere else.

Second, with a ride time as short as 17 seconds one must be a little open minded to understand that the moment you get near the ride, the experience begins. Trains launch over 100mph overhead as you enter the line and you feel the wind and hear the screams. You anxiously watch every train creep up the tower while you're waiting, just waiting for a rollback to happen. The actual ride begins as you enter the seat. You pull down your restraint and realize just how open the cars really are. You're either geeked in excitement or extremely nervous for whatever reasons.

The ride hasn't even started yet, but for most people, their adrenaline is already going.

The train now rolls up into the staging area and the crowd of spectators and roar of the engine sound effects create a surreal experience (you're in the zone at this point). The brakes retract, the train creeps back into the catchcar, and life is suddenly in slow motion. Yellow...Yellow...Yellow... The green light flashes and off you go. The speed sensation is truly incredible.

You've just gone down the tower and are speeding into the brakes. Several seconds later you're entering the unload station and getting off. The ride experience happens so fast, few have much to say at first since their mind hasn't quite caught up. All you see are smiles from the incredible rush and the sensation last for several minutes after the fact.

That is the reason I love the ride. That feeling never gets old and it gets me every time.

On a side note, I would never wait three hours for a ride I've been on 20 times nor am I very happy with all the downtime, but for a first timer, it is all very worth it.

*** Edited 2/23/2007 4:33:21 AM UTC by gomez***

ApolloAndy's avatar
Any launched coaster is going to be somewhat short compared to a ride with a lift hill. Agreed that some of the rockets are obviously on the short side on top of that, but that has been discussed many times...

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Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

SFoGswim's avatar
I love TTD to death, but that's not the point.

Imagine how much more expensive the track alone would cost on a ride that speed. An average sized coaster is going 60 mph at its fastest point. TTD is going 120. That means, for every second of ride time, TTD needs twice as much track, twice as many supports, and twice as much space. A 10% cost increase is big when you're talking about coasters, but a 100% cost increase is hard to even comprehend.

Welcome back, red train, how was your ride?!
Mamoosh's avatar
It is out of this world and you just can't get that feeling anywhere else.

Really? ;)

I always wondered why the parks didn't just go all out and add a little more length. If it's going to be one of the largest coasters in the world, why not make it fun?

Danthecoasterman, that info is easily found at Copied and pasted...$12,500,000

12 and a half Million is not bad for such a great ride, imho. That's half of what CP paid for TTD, and I consider SR a much better coaster. What a different park CP would be right now if they had gone the fun factor route instead of the record breaker route.


TTD isn't fun?
rollergator's avatar
^Not *as* fun...the 'Runner is funner than any of the other US Intamin a WIDE margin, IMO. :)

Togo lovers alert: You can get your twist-n-dive on at Hershey....LOL!

Why are Intamin AG coasters so short?

#1) Money. $25,000,000 was the price tag just for TTD's one hill. The cheapest one I've seen is Storm Runner, but I haven't tracked down all of the prices yet.

#2) Space. Xcelerator is crammed in a very tight space in the park, so I think they did a pretty good job on the layout of that coaster. The overbanked turns kinda added something to the ride. Thank God it didn't end up like Stealth. That looks too short.

#3) Main Purpose of the Experience. The point of these coasters is to feel the launching experience, which brings one-trick-ponies like TTD and Kingda Ka and really short coasters like Stealth and Zaturn into existance.

While Intamin AG launchers are short, they're starting to incorperate more elements, and that's really the purpose of these type of coasters: short but sweet.

Wikipedia says Storm Runner was $12,000,000:, but I guess it's close to the $12.5 million RCDB said.

Roller first true love.
The experience of riding Dragster the first time was one of the best thrills that I have ever had. It reminded me of the very first time that I ever got on a rollercoaster. I actually was scared. Not just the butterfly feeling that I get with any new coaster, I'm talking about real fear.

Dragster is my favorite coaster anywhere. Yep, I said it... My very favorite!

Why are the launched rides so short? Have you ever looked at the size of the motors required to launch them? They're HUGE! That surely is a significant part of the cost right there.

The launch track on Storm Runner, for example, may be short, but the launch track on Kingda Ka is anything but short. During a breakdown last year, the maintenance guy had to walk all the way down the track and back. I'd estimate it was a ten-minute walk each direction.

Afterall, when you watch a KK train, the first thought is "How is that tiny train going to get overtop of that enormous hill?" The answer: It needs a lot of room to build up and maintain the steam to go vertical.

Let's look at some of the other costs of TTD and KK that the smaller launchers don't have:

1) TTD-Six trains, KK-four trains

2) Maintenance elevator that is the height of the tower

3) Support structure for the spike, including maintenance bridges at various levels

I totally agree that a longer ride would probably not be in the best interest of the two larger launchers. It might sound great on paper, but you would need an extremely large area of land to put in the extra elements so as to not kill anyone.

I can't speak for everyone, but I think a lot of people are actually relieved that a ride moving at 120-128mph is over at quickly as it is.

You get a little air from the camel hump,. Rnough to add something extra. In my experience the air changes alittle on that hump depending on how the launch went.

But kk and ttd dont need more elements. The view at the top of kk is enough for me lol.

Launch coasters are about the launch and thats all they need. At those speeds who wants a 2 minute ride.

Timbers crew 08

While I'll admit that TTD was scary the first time I rode it, every time afterwards I was disappointed that there was nothing to look forward to after the launch and tophat.

I worked at CP last year and only rode TTD a few times (4 or 5). Compare that to Magnum, of which I rode maybe 50 times.

Maybe my dislike for TTD is partly because I worked right next to it and had to put up with it interfering with my job all day. At Paddlewheel Excursions, we had to keep an eye out for falling loose articles from TTD. One time, for example, an large open pocketknife fell inches from another Boat Captain. That was the worst; most of the time we were only bombed by cell phones and sunglasses.

And dealing with unhappy guests when TTD was not open was not fun. Sometimes it was best to not mention the ride at all.

The point is-Different strokes for different folks.

Winningfreak said:
Why is it on rides like Xcelerator and TTD the track is short? its like 20 seconds and you are done after 2 hours of line what kind of fun is that? you spend more time loading the car than you do on the ride why dont they add more twist and turns make it more fun?

Sheer dollars and sense. Intamin gets more bucks for the bang on short rides like these.

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