Kings Island will retire Firehawk roller coaster at the end of the season

Posted Thursday, September 27, 2018 10:34 AM | Contributed by Jeff

Kings Island announced Firehawk will close at the end of Halloween Haunt. The park first formally announced plans to close the ride earlier this week.

Read more from The Springfield News-Sun.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 10:56 AM

I have to wonder if this is due to capacity as it seemed like it was a pretty popular attraction. I like the Vekoma Flyer concept, but the loading process is painfully slow even at an efficient park like Kings Island. I've only been to Kings Island a couple times since Firehawk was installed but even with long lines, there was only ever one train and one station operating. I'm doubting it will be relocated again since according to Kings Island it has reached the end of it's service life, but it would be nice if it found a home at a park with less attendance.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 10:58 AM

Perhaps some of the parts will be sent to Carowinds to keep their flyer running for a little while longer?

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 12:11 PM

Hmm;
Maybe Michigan's Adventure would find this attraction to be a good fit for there park. It'd be unique to Michigan. That park lacks large additions like this. Considering the cost for the original X-Flight was I believe 10 million, so based on the cost of moving the product, it'd be about 5 million to the park. It's a cheap way to add a major coaster with fittable capacity for such a park.

They could give it a new color scheme and cool unique name and BAM! The coaster count rises and marketing hopefully will go wild with it.

Honestly, that park has so much more land that they could utilize.

Last edited by JECmodels, Thursday, September 27, 2018 12:57 PM
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Thursday, September 27, 2018 12:17 PM

So long, and thanks for all the.. uhm.. uhh.. nothing, really.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 12:26 PM

I was surprised to read that 640,000+ riders was the most riders of any year in operation. For a park with attendance as large as Kings Island, that seems very low.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 12:33 PM

I had more fun operating X-Flight than any other coaster when I worked at the park... It will be missed, some great memories on that ride!

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 12:38 PM

Sucks.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 12:50 PM

urumqi said:
I was surprised to read that 640,000+ riders...

That’s because they only sent out 24 riders every ten/fifteen minutes.

Truth told, I’d have been ok with the determination that either Firehawk or Vortex had reached the end of their service life.
(I hope nobody ever uses that phrase about me.)

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 1:15 PM

RCMAC, it's your Lastday. Enter the Carousel. This is the time of renewal.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 1:30 PM

urumqi said:

I was surprised to read that 640,000+ riders was the most riders of any year in operation. For a park with attendance as large as Kings Island, that seems very low.

That's only 4000 a day with a 160 day operating season.

300-400 pph? Oof.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 1:48 PM

Surprised they would take Firehawk out being a newer major coaster. But, the KI staff loves to tease us with false hints thinking Vortex was doomed. Relieved to know that The Bat is still safe! Only a handful were built and a few of them are around.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 2:05 PM

Concrete Enchilada said:

Relieved to know that The Bat is still safe! Only a handful were built and a few of them are around.

Well, that's one of the reasons I'll miss Firehawk. Only a handful of Vekoma Flying Dutchman coasters were built and only three are currently operating, so after October there will be only two, one of which has become too rough to be tolerable. I'm a great fan of this coaster model despite its extremely slow loading process. The riding position is something out of which I get a real kick. Despite what the park says about its having come to the end of its service life, maybe they could send it to Dorney!

This unfortunate announcement could mean a special trip to KI for final rides/rites, which wasn't on the agenda. Just checked American Airlines and roundtrip Philly to Cincinnati is $226.40, not bad at all, so maybe I'll do it despite having visited KI in April.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 4:32 PM

And in a related article, Dorney announces it will be getting a new coaster in 2019, called “Bird Thing.”

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 4:52 PM

Bobbie1951 said:

Only a handful of Vekoma Flying Dutchman coasters were built

There's a reason for that

and only three are currently operating

There's a reason for that

one of which has become too rough to be tolerable.

And there it is!

EDIT: Okay, well I dorked that up pretty bad, but I think you get my point.

"Useful Life?" What a joke, considering all of the recent discussions on Hulk and Dueling Dragons. I think what they mean is "This POS just isn't worth it any more."

Last edited by Tommytheduck, Thursday, September 27, 2018 4:55 PM
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Thursday, September 27, 2018 5:12 PM

Yeah, that's not a good lifespan for a seasonal ride, especially one running so few cycles. I still believe it's the real reason. I bet it's not an issue of track though, and more one of the trains and mechanical stuff. Cedar Fair is pretty meticulous about tracking the maintenance costs of rides.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 5:14 PM

Bobbie1951 said:
Only a handful of Vekoma Flying Dutchman coasters were built and only three are currently operating

I thought only 3 were built:
Stealth->Borg->Nighthawk
Batwing
X-Flight->Firehawk->?

Am I missing something?

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 10:47 PM

Yup. RCDB.com has three built.

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Thursday, September 27, 2018 11:01 PM

Interesting post from a fairly reputable source on another board claims that X-Flight was originally intended for PKI in 2001. Certainly makes this ride's story even more interesting to know it bounced between three different park operators.

https://kicentral.com/forums/index.php?/topic/33943-the-firehawk-back-story/

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