New Vekoma trains: Dragster for the very poor

Monday, January 26, 2004 9:27 AM
Vekoma introduced a new train design for their Mark 1200 looping coasters at the EAS (European Amusement Show) in Paris.

The trains can be retrofitted on all existing Vekoma loopers and are said to offer a better wheel assembly among other new features.
However, good looks are certainly NOT one of the new features.

See for yourself:

http://www.coastersandmore.de/Rides/eas04/eas6.shtml#ve

Doesn´t it look like a very cheap TTD rip off?!

According to Vekoma a big plus is the new, elevated seating position which is supposed to make boarding much easier. While this may be true I fear that passengers heads are now higher from the centre of rotation which could result in even rougher headbanging than usual.

The pictures are the last page of a six page report of the EAS.

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Monday, January 26, 2004 9:51 AM
Geez,

That worse looking than the god-awful steel coaster train offered by PTC. I didn't think that was possible!

Shaggy

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Monday, January 26, 2004 10:06 AM
Nah, the PTC is worse in my opinion. But if it's gonna be a Dragster knock-off, does it come with break-away action slick tires?
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Monday, January 26, 2004 10:14 AM
Nah, it's Vekoma....the "break-away tires" aren't JUST for theming....;)
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Monday, January 26, 2004 10:27 AM
Vekoma offers a new train that should eliminate rough rides, the one thing that nearly every enthusiast can't stand about their coasters, and people are still complaining? Criminy. The thing could look like an Amtrak and I wouldn't give a damn.
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Monday, January 26, 2004 10:32 AM
Vater....Vekoma's been around for a long time....if these new trains are all they're cracked up to be, word WILL get out. Just can't be too surprised that their *reputation* precedes delivery of the first new vehicles...

Of course, I have one of the two best SLC's in the country (WA's Hangman) AND RnRC within two hours' drive, so I really can't complain as much as those poor folks getting their heads POUNDED by poorly-maintained Vekomas with the hard-shell earbashers...

Trust me, IF these new trains deliver a smoother ride, everyone will know about it soon enough...;)

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Monday, January 26, 2004 10:35 AM
I like that layout at the top of the page too. That first drop looks wicked! And I love seein those motorbikes again. They should find some way to take old Zeirer-type kiddie coasters that are in storage someplace and retrofit them with those motorbikes. I'm sure even that would be a hair-raising experience with that little holding you in!
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Monday, January 26, 2004 10:38 AM
So if these trains eliminate the rough ride experience does that mean they automatically smooth out the track transitions? I thought that was the main reason for Vekoma roughness?
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Monday, January 26, 2004 10:46 AM
Good question. I'm sure that's a part of it, but I have to chalk it up to the sloppy wheel contact too. On an SLC where you can see the wheels, you can watch the guide wheels bounce around against the track. I'm sure that doesn't help.

Of course, having top-notch maintenance helps too. I don't think anyone would call Rock-n-Rollercoaster at Dis-MGM rough.

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Monday, January 26, 2004 10:57 AM
I just realized that the new trains run on an ARROW loop-screw in South Korea, not a Vekoma version. It will be very interesting if we see many of the new trains in the future.

They already designed new, very open and naked trains for their "tilt coaster", which I found quite ugly. But they still looked better like the new ones:
http://www.coasterclub.org/photos/53-gravitymax/img_2.shtml

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Monday, January 26, 2004 11:00 AM
Actually, I'm not so sure there are many Vekomas that have bad transitions. Older Arrow rides are known for having less-than-smooth transitions (although I'd blame the trains first), but if you look at most Vekoma coasters (like Ninja @ SFoG, but NOT Ninja @ SFStL) you can see that the transitions look nearly B&M-like. In fact, if I overlook the typical shaking while riding an SLC, the transitions are phenomenal.
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Monday, January 26, 2004 11:02 AM
RnRC @ MGM Studios is smoother than a few B&Ms I have ridden. I'm sure that Disney maintenance has something to do with that.

I wonder if the Vekoma coasters at Disneyland Paris (Space Mtn and BTMRR) are smooth, too?

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Monday, January 26, 2004 11:19 AM

Vater said:
In fact, if I overlook the typical shaking while riding an SLC, the transitions are phenomenal.

I agree, except for the turn into the station. (maybe that just applies to Kong) The ride is bearable until that point.....almost reminds me of Raptor's sucka punch at the end of the ride.

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Monday, January 26, 2004 11:25 AM
I wouldn't mind seeing these trains on a few Arrow coasters either. But like Mamoosh said, these trains may fix the problem of roughness, but what about head banging? Most people can deal with the hunting and shaking that plagues many Arrow / Vekoma coasters, the real problem lies in the head banging or other rough transitions ( Like in Arrow mine trains - Incredibly smooth, but bad transitions. )
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Monday, January 26, 2004 11:29 AM
What do you suppose is improved about the wheel assembly? Have they decided tto make solid contact like the Swiss coasters?
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Monday, January 26, 2004 11:48 AM

Vater said:
Vekoma offers a new train that should eliminate rough rides, the one thing that nearly every enthusiast can't stand about their coasters, and people are still complaining? Criminy. The thing could look like an Amtrak and I wouldn't give a damn.

I don't know....I have been on a couple pretty rough Amtrak trains. ;)

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Monday, January 26, 2004 1:17 PM
The new wheel design seems to be centered around having each wheel set turn indepentenly while being connected to each other through a linkage. Just the way B&M does on their sitdowns. This design should eliminate hunting which will eliminate the lateral jolts you feel while riding Vekomas and especially old Arrows. They could also help smooth out bad transistions a little.
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Monday, January 26, 2004 1:21 PM
I kinda like the look, but the REAL test will be to see how they ride. I'll give Vekoma credit, they ARE trying to work on past mistakes...

If they really do improve the Vekoma rides, I wonder if any parks will try them out on the old ARROW loopers.

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Monday, January 26, 2004 1:49 PM
It seems to me that Vekoma is doing everything they can to improve upon what they did in the past as well as come up with new and exciting innovations... for the first time in a long while, I am eager to see some new Vekoma coasters installed in the U.S.
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Monday, January 26, 2004 2:37 PM
New and exciting innovations... new Vekoma coasters in the U.S....

Sounds like Deja Vu! ;)

Colin D., who, despite all intended sarcasm, thoroughly enjoyed his one ride on Deja Vu.

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