If there are others, I am sure someone else will chime in.
Conneaut Lake Park had a Hell Hole, not a rotor. Very similar, and only 3 made.
Most parks have removed theirs, and now you have to find a traveling show to get a good ride.
Kennywood had the newest one, now sold, made by Chance. All fiberglass. Quiet runner, but not as durable as the old days.
And since we're on the Rotor topic, what year was Conneaut's Hell Hole originally built and who was the manufacturer? It resembled the old Rotors of the 50's with the multiple viewing decks and the larger drum that seemed to spin twice as fast as the Chance models.
It's a shame these rides are all but extinct. It was a unique experience that kids really seemed to like.
Is SFMM's gone, the one down by the mine train?
ETA: There's also a list of operating Rotors on Wikipedia, although as always the information is subject to not being accurate: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rotor_%28ride%29 *** Edited 5/5/2008 2:55:56 PM UTC by CarrieR***
I don't know how often you get to Columbus, but COSI, (the Center of Science and Industry) is a great family oriented science museum. There they have in the outdoor Science Park portion of the museum a Rotor called Centripetal Generotor. It's fun to see, as they have stripped the original Chance ride (which we were told came from a park in Maine) of it's top and outer shell, so the spinning drum, doors, etc. are visible from the ground. It's themed like a large generator of sorts with an oversized (huge) horseshoe magnet that's seemingly stuck to the side of the drum, as if to hold the riders inside in place. As with all things COSI, when you ride you get a science lesson about things like centripetal force, G forces, and so on. It's a great place with lots of fun and educational things for the entire family. Check it out. http://www.cosi.org/visitors/exhibits/big-science-park/generotor/
Doesn't Hershey still have their's? It might be the closest to Erie for you.
Kennywood's Chance Rotor was one of the best, the floor went down very far away from the rider's feet. I rode Hoffmeister's Rotor at Cedar Point which I believe operated from the late 50's to late 60's. It was the old style gallery rotor with the large wooden drum and it was great. The scariest ever was the Hell Hole at Coney Island, NY. Like a torture device, it was. It went so fast the kids on it were crying. I was, too. I think there was finally a bad accident on that one (like a part of the wall coming off while it was in motion, or something) and it went away.
Always made me curious why these things went out of style. Was it the safety factor? I always wondered if there were any horror stories about passengers getting footgear or clothing pinched between the wall and the floor when the platform rises back up.
I don't know about them going out of style so much, but I don't believe they are made anymore. As they get older and worn out the parts may be harder to find, who knows?
Most Rotors operated so that the floor didn't come all the way back up to the riders feet, and as the ride slowed down the riders would slip slowly back down the last couple of inches to the the floor. When it stopped the riders would step to the center (sometimes there was a pole to grab onto for balance) and the operator would raise the floor back up to door level. The Chance rides had a nubby rubber covering on the wall, making it harder to slide down. The Hoffmeister rides had smooth walls, and usually they would let the riders slide all the way to the bottom, and not raise the floor back up at all until it had stopped completely. The Hell Hole I rode had an exit door at the bottom and they just let the riders out there, then raised the floor back up once everyone was gone.
I don't know of any horror stories, Mike, but one time at CP I saw a girl's flipflop fall between the floor and the wall, disappearing down below. The operator had to go to ground level, go in the small door at the back of the ride and retrieve the shoe for her. Neither the shoe nor the girl were injured. All in all it was a very safe ride, not much could go wrong, and most times didn't even post a height restriction.
You must be logged in to post