Millennium Force Seatbelts

Saturday, May 15, 2010 3:10 PM

Just got a call from a friend at Cedar Point. He had to do the walk of shame on Millennium Force. He has never had a problem in the past, and is the same weight as he was last year.

The ride op said that the belts were shortened during the off season.

Has anyone else been there today to report on this?

I am going tomorrow and hope to fit. :(

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Saturday, May 15, 2010 4:04 PM

Oh, no, not this again...

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

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Saturday, May 15, 2010 5:28 PM

On the one hand, perfect time in life to be the thinnest I've ever been (165, 32"), on the other...increased walk-of-shames and crappy capacity sounds like dreck to me :(

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Saturday, May 15, 2010 9:02 PM

Here we go again....when are Americans going to learn to eat more fresh fruits and vegetables and less high fructose corn syrup and sugar? I dare say if you are above a 40" waist you are gonna have trouble, that's just the facts of life with Intamin T-bars and it isn't going to change no matter how much people complain. It really is your choice.

Last edited by mlnem4s, Saturday, May 15, 2010 9:02 PM
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Saturday, May 15, 2010 10:12 PM

The sensors on the lap bars on Ride of Steel at DL, S:ROS at SFA and the old trains on SFNE S:ROS were added by Six Flags after the 2004 ejection.

Intamin caught up with that and started installing sensors on their hyper coasters and wooden coasters in 2006. They are VERY sensible. I never had a problem with seatbelts and lap bars and on Kawasemi, the japanese Intamin Megalite, I strangely needed help pushing the T bar even further, even if I had slack on the seatbelt!

Last edited by Absimilliard, Saturday, May 15, 2010 10:13 PM
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Saturday, May 15, 2010 10:39 PM

Keep in mind it is also the first day, the belts are all going to be very stiff on all the rides, as the season goes along they do give a little more but not very much.

The other issue is body proportion versus actual weight. Some people have smaller legs/thighs/waists but are bulky in their chest/shoulders, they seem to fit fine. Others may have small upper bodies and small frames in general but carry all their weight through their waist and thighs, this is where I see issues with lapbars not securing.

My only suggestion with MForce would be to of course try the test seat first. If you fit and then get on the platform and the belt doesn't meet requirements then ask to switch to a seat several rows away from that seat.

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Saturday, May 15, 2010 11:36 PM

I really don't think weight issues are relevant to this discussion for a lot of reasons. The biggest reason is that year after year it's inconsistent, and if belt length is being dictated by Intamin arbitrarily, that's a raw deal for the park.

The second issue is that the design is flawed to the point that people within a normal weight range, especially women, often have difficulty. I've seen some tight fits for women who have perfectly normal wide hips, which should tell you that the shape of the seat and placement of the belt is all wrong.

At a 34" waist I've not had any issues, but in the fall in particular, when I'm layered up with sweatshirts and jackets, it gets to be a really tight fit. That to me implies that the design is wrong. The Dragster iteration of the seat does not have that problem, in part because of the deeper seats and bent T-bar post. I mean, the Millennium Force T-bars will touch your nuts before your legs, particularly if you have skinny legs. It's a poor design.

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Saturday, May 15, 2010 11:55 PM

Yet another issue is that there is no reasonable way to determine the "correct" position of the lap bar. On Xcelerator, thanks to CalDOSH, there is not merely a go/no go indicator, but the add-on rails on the sides of the seat provide a logical location for a lap bar minimum position.

On the B&M lap bars, or the GCI trains, the minimum lap bar position is easy to figure out: it's the position where the lap bar meets the end of the "armrest" so that there is a closed loop around the rider. On Millennium Force, almost nobody can get the bar down that far. So what is your signal that it is "good to go"? What makes any given position adequate for any given rider? That standardization simply doesn't exist on that seat.

You can't even rely on the point where the lap bar hits the thighs. Jeff already pointed out why that doesn't work (ouch!!). And my thighs are...uh...not exactly skinny!

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 12:23 AM

Crap. I'm in trouble. I gained 15 pounds over the winter and I barely made it on two years ago. Time to lose some weight I guess.

I am curious to hear the reports from those that went today.

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 12:27 AM

Obviously the best solution would be to purchase new trains, after all the Intamin blunders don't they really owe Cedar Point something for all the business they have thrown Intamin's way?!?! New trains would go along with my idea that MForce should get an update treatment like Tower of Terror every few years creating new experiences for guests and keep the coaster enthusiasts "bussing" about what might come next. First, MForce.2 with new trains with speakers for techno music while riding. Then maybe MForce.3 with new special effects in the tunnels and throughout the ride. Etc, etc, etc.

Of course it is just a dream since we know a certain CEO never considers ideas like this to be worthy of his time or capital expenditure program.

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 1:36 AM

I don't think it's worth it either. I see no return on investment to add music to the ride. The trains certainly don't need to be replaced to get better seats either.

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 3:31 AM

^^Techno music? EEeeeekkksss.. that would keep me off the ride!

Too bad about the seatbelts. I remember when the ride opened, it was this whole big deal Intamin 'open air' seating, which really isn't a big deal.

How fun is it being open to the air when you are strapped and pinned to your seat nearly to the point of pain?

I'll take the old Intamin trains, anyday... the ones with sides and comfortable lap bars.

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 10:48 AM

Jeff said:
which should tell you that the shape of the seat and placement of the belt is all wrong.

The placement of the belt is ridiculous. It is a pain to get buckled most of the time trying to find where to snap it, and like you said if you have a couple layers on for warmth, it is even harder. I don't see why they can't use a similar belt only one that buckles in the middle. I think doing that might improve efficiency by a little.

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 11:32 AM

What is it with Intamin FAIL lately? I've gained about 10 pounds since last summer. I'm big, but not that big. If I can't get on MF, then I really don't see the point of visiting Cedar Point.

How safe was the ride last season, when the belt was just a little longer? How safe was the ride before that, when the belt was even longer than that? Is the answer really "not safe enough"?

Going by what has been said in this thread, I'm pretty sure that I can still "fit" on the ride, but I understand how upsetting it would be if one couldn't. Maybe people who can't ride should boycott the park or something. Money talks.

Last edited by LostKause, Sunday, May 16, 2010 11:32 AM
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Sunday, May 16, 2010 12:30 PM

If they did change the seats/restraints on Millennium Force, would Intamin require them to get the new I305 style restraints? You could likely get larger people on the ride, but with obvious disadvantages..

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 1:22 PM

Those belts were shortened by at least 2 inches. Ive been touch and go for awhile but there was no hope of me buckling yesterday, zero. Its back to the length it was originally when it was shortened.

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 1:33 PM

I would also say the belts were shortend by 2 inches. Last year I had no trouble buckling the seat belt with at least 3 inches to spare. This year, same waist size, same weight, same pants even, and I had almost no spare belt.

Granted, it was a night ride Saturday, and I had on a sweatshirt and jacket, but it was still too close for comfort. And I never even considered the test seat.

I also saw the walk of shame at least four times, and I'm sure it was more because the crew was not even close to hitting their intervals.

Last edited by Bozman, Sunday, May 16, 2010 1:33 PM
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Sunday, May 16, 2010 1:52 PM

So much for using the statement that well Millennium Force is the one that wasn't screwed up by Intamin. To quote popular culture the whole Intamin Cedar Fair thing has the definite makings of a bad romance.

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 2:22 PM

I guess I'll cancel my trip to CoasterMania. My waist size is down to 38", but I'm not taking any chances.

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Sunday, May 16, 2010 3:29 PM

I'm sure you'd still be welcome at Holiwood Nights. :)

I'm also sure that if asked CP will simply say that the belts were changed in response to "manufacturer recommendations". It just makes me wonder how much patience CP has with Intamin. CP has to deal with the PR problems related to constantly changing the rider requirements year to year.

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