Is Kong really that bad?

Sunday, June 24, 2001 10:00 PM
I have a question for those of you who have ridden Kong. I was recently browsing around RCDB.com, and I came across Kong. I was looking at the pictures they have of it, and this one caught my eye:

http://www.rcdb.com/installationgallery163.htm?Picture=2

That picture makes the coaster look very impressive to me. It looks to have a great layout, and good elements and pacing, but every time something comes up about this coaster, I always hear negative things about it, mainly complaining about the head-banging. I guess, to get to the point, my question is:

Is Kong really that bad? Is it a good coaster, but the head-banging ruins it, or is it just all and all, a crappy coaster?

My take on it, from what I've heard (I've never ridden it myself), is that the head-banging is bad (Well duh, it's Vekoma), but that it has a GREAT layot. It looks like one of those coasters with a good layout, that would have been better had it been manufactured by a certain other manufacturer of inverted coasters. *cough*B&M*cough*

So what's your take on it?

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-Joe
(Who will be at Cedar Point August 9th. E-mail me if you're gonna be there.)
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Sunday, June 24, 2001 10:31 PM
Two words: KONG SUCKS! Its slow, alot of head- banging and it breaks down a whole lot. The lines are ridiculous for such a crapy ride. I wouldnt ride it if my life depended on it.

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Artifficial Intelligence is no match for Natural Stupitidy.
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Sunday, June 24, 2001 10:35 PM
It may be nice to look at, but one ride was more than enough for me. Ouch! This was a first gen. Vekoma SLC, so it's among the roughest.

You are right when you say that it could have been an great ride if produced by another company (like a Swiss one :) ).

Here's what I don't understand sometimes: The Vekoma SLC (Kong) and the B&M "Batman" style clone are roughly the same height, same track length, have the same number of inversions, etc. The cost......almost the exact same! (Currently, in the neighborhood of $10,000,000) Why buy a cheap car when you can buy a Mercedes for almost the exact same cost? In 10 years I wonder how a 2001 SLC will be running. Look at how badly many have deteriorated in such a short time. (In 95, when Kong was at Opryland as Hangman, it wasn't 10% as rough as it is now.) On the flip side, I bet a 2001 B&M invert will be running beautifully. (Look at Batman at SFGAm after 9 years. Kong hasn't aged well at in half that time)

I don't mean to bash Vekoma too much, as I do think they're improving in many ways, but, when are they going to wake up and fix the SLC (especially the trains and wheel assemblies)? Many of their newer products such as the invertigo feature improvements that could help the SLC. If they bent the the transitions on the SLC better, and had spring-loaded wheel assemblies it could be an AMAZING ride!
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- Peabody
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Sunday, June 24, 2001 11:01 PM
Well said, Peabody.

Kong isn't a 'bad' ride, it just hasn't aged very well. The roughness and head-banging have improved vastly this year thanks to a new paint job, and what appears to be one new train. These things are still a problem, though, just not as bad as in previous years. Like Medusa there, the plot of land Kong is built on is ugly as sin and gives the ride a really bad look to it. Just rocks, dirt, and weeds. The actual ride itself isn't that bad, really -- the ride just has many, many other negative factors that make the whole experience bad. Among some of them are: Very little/no landscaping, unbearable waits (mostly due to Kong's more-than-often single-train operation), and poor placement in the park.

Once you're on the ride, it is just as you said: well-paced and fun, but getting to that point can really suck the life out of you.
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Life's too short to mind,
Just keep on with the sweet up and down
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Monday, June 25, 2001 1:45 AM

Peabody said:
"...I don't mean to bash Vekoma too much..."


Why not? They certainly bash me everytime I go on them!

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Parks done 2001: BPB, PKI, SFWOA, CP, KW, HP, DP, Knoebels, Astroland, SFGAdv, SFNE, SFA, LC, Moreys Pier, PKD, PC, BGW, DMP.
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Monday, June 25, 2001 12:38 PM
LOL...true, Grant!
- Peabody
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Monday, June 25, 2001 12:56 PM
Actually, I enjoyed Kong quite a bit. I went on it twice during my last visit. It's nothing like batman, but it truly was a fun ride. No headbanging for me. It was pretty slow, but I had great fun.
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Tuesday, June 26, 2001 4:18 AM
I'll agree. Went on it twice. The ride seems like it's running in slow motion. There is alot of head banging, you have to keep your head against the head rest. I came off it the 2nd time and my head was hurting. We didn't do it anymore. Another outdated ride that needs to be torn down, but won't because the parks need to save money. So now the park considers that their inverted, and you don't get a new one.

The answer is to tear it down and put a full length B&M inverted in there to go with Medusa West. There's enough room to intertwine the two coasters. I could see a new B&M inverted going over that walk way to Medusa and back. That would be the perfect 1-2 punch.

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Robin Fox - "I see Stars, Can You See Them Too?"
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Tuesday, June 26, 2001 9:02 AM
Is Kong that bad? I say yes and no.

SLC's tend to be jerky when going through the elements, but more so toward the front of the train. The pacing in the front is just off due to the rest of the train catching up to the apex of the inversions. For some reason, the SLC's are particularly bad with this problem.

I have ridden Kong and Serial Thriller (SFAW) and both were not bad at all, in the back of the train. Slow and not too intense, but little or no head banging. The front was horrible.

"The roughness and head-banging have improved vastly this year thanks to a new paint job..."

Ah, I guess they used that new "smoothing paint" I have been hearing so much about. I don't see how a paint job can make a ride smoother. But if it did, then quick, SOMEONE PAINT SFMM'S FLACHBACK!!

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"X" marks the spot in 2001!
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Tuesday, June 26, 2001 9:30 AM
I'm not saying that the paint job has completeley smoothed the ride out, but it certainly has helped. (Because they didn't do a whole heck of a lot else to the ride :))
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Life's too short to mind,
Just keep on with the sweet up and down *** This post was edited by dmb-crush on 6/26/2001. ***
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