SFA 7/24 - Batwing Second Ride, S:RoS Maintenance

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Thursday, July 26, 2001 2:43 PM
Arrived just after 10:00 and proceeded past the HUGE crowd of non-season pass holders waiting at the front gate. It was immediately back to Batwing. After my first ride last time, I must say that Batwing somewhat dissapointed my expections. Keep in mind that that ride came after standing around in the heat for an hour and a half, being forced to ride in the third row of the train and the top restraints being PINNED and bottom half going atleast half-foot too far not into place.

Well, this time, I got on with just over a FIVE minute wait AND got to sit, or rather, lie, in the front row. One train only was still operating with both of the others appearantly ready to go. The lift this time was the loudest in the park compared to last time when all except the peak of the lift was completely silent. I had heard that it didn't matter which row you ride, but I have to say, the front was MUCH MUCH better than the third. First of all, the first flip was incredible as always and the flying sensation was very truely there. With the top of the restraint loose and the bottom fully into place, I had none of the trouble with nearly slipping out and was able to extend my arms. Also, the middle rows are blocked by those in front from the wind. In the front, everything is perfect, let me just say again, it feels EXACTLY like flying without assistance, but better. Now, last time I found there to be a bit too many G's in the Loop. This time, the G's were distributed PERFECTLY with great air at the top. The Double-Spin is the only part of the ride which I still think could be improved. When flipping from below the track to above, you somewhat drop from the restraint and into the seat several times. If sped up more, this element would be near perfection. But then, perhaps the best finale on a coaster ever, the helix is INCREDIBLE, the G's, smoothness, and what X-Flight, from what I've seen lacks, coming so close to the ground. Not to mention the great flip onto the brakes. I have raised Batwing on my top five coasters now to:

#1 - Volcano
#2 - S:RoS, SFA
#3 - Batwing
#4 - Loch Ness Monster
#5 - Laser

Next coaster was S:RoS. The cause of the blue train down is what appeared to be wheel maintenance. There were 18 non-Road Wheels sitting next to the train along with some wheel axels. I got a second-row ride, IMO, equally as good as the front due to the tiered design. I was able to go this time with the lap bar about 8" loose and, nothing can compare to that great Camelback #2 airtime, and the straightaway just before it is even enjoyable IMO speeding ahead and then hitting the hump.

Then it was off to Roar after a refreshing Icee, especially so in the weather that it was. For a while, the ride seemed to be lacking some maintenance, but now it is nearly as good as in it's opening year, a little loud thought. I couldn't resist a second ride on my #1 woodie.

Also, I got in some rides on some flats. The only rides down the entire day were Rodeo, Sky Escaper and Penguin's Polar Express with some others down temporarily.

Now, onto the improvements, some as always, since my last visit. First of all, there is a new fries stand replacing the small drinks stand over next to Krypton Comet. The path for the future Batwing plaza looks to be built as much as it will be for awhile. There was a small, square metal frame over by S:RoS's brake run. Looks to be for a new path-covering. One looked to be missing from the exit to Superman. Also, the S-logo at the entrance to the S:RoS path was trimmed for the first time I've been there this year. And, also, I was very glad that the Gotham and Superman soundtracks were playing this time, they truely create a great themed atmosphere although those darn Gotham Games should be muted. I'll try to get another visit to SFA soon (another Tuesday for the great Batwing waits!), once again, great time at the park and I just can't put into words how much I loved Batwing this time!

Blast Coaster - http://coasternet.danimation.com -COASTERnet IV - COMING AUGUST 1ST!
Thursday, July 26, 2001 3:55 PM
I'm not sure what's going on with the Batwing lift. Sometimes it's completely silent, and sometimes the anti-rollback makes a horrible racket. My bottom line is "Is it running?", and if the answer is yes, then I don't care. The backpack restraints (don't know what they're called) seem to be looser than at first also, which is more comfortable for me. Glad you liked it so much.

Batwing-Bow Down
Friday, July 27, 2001 2:20 PM
Intamin Fan, after just getting my first rides on Batwing this past Tuesday, your sig finally makes sense. ;)

Joshua Wilcox
The following statement is true.
The preceding statement is false.
Friday, July 27, 2001 3:05 PM
That's funny because X-Flight's lift is silent except when going over the top; the complete opposite of Batwing, I guess.

I too, found the 2nd Generation Flying Dutchman nearly perfectly executed in design. Great job, Vekoma! Now, as long as it ages properly, I'll be one happy camper!

By the way, what a great trip report! SFA is one of those parks that I want to visit because it looks like it has a great selection of rides. By other peoples opinions: they have two great wooden coasters, an excellent hyper, a great flying coaster, and two good Vekoma inverts (am I the only ones who actually like these rides??).

A New World. A New Technology. One Last Hope for Salvation. Neon Genesis Evangelion
Friday, July 27, 2001 5:13 PM
Well Two Face is a great invertigo, but Minderaser? eh...

I love roller coasters
Friday, July 27, 2001 6:34 PM
Thanks for the comments!

First off, the first time I rode Batwing the lift was completely silent except for the top. I heard last year an explination of why Stealth's is quiet most of the time with a few loud days....

Yes, SFA is certainly a park worth visiting... Although the park layout needs to be connected in several places (which it will soon be from the Coyote Creek area to the Batwing and Gotham area!) and new trees need to grow in a bit to eliminate the desert feel in the new expansions, SFA has a great collection of coasters and one of the best flat ride collections in any park with one of almost every type of ride and more on the way (including a proposed Top Spin, Ferris Wheel, Flying Scooters & Log Flume). But the coaster collection does seem to currently miss something... I think that when SFA installs their first B&M that will round out their coaster collection very nicely... And the lap bars on JJ will vastly improve that ride IMO! But I think that Batwing is a giant leap in the right direction, a fantastic AND rare type of coaster and they also kept a forest surrounding half of the ride! I'm very impressed that they didn't clear out the trees... I beleive that that's a first for SFA! In several more years, I see SFA as being a coaster and park capital of America, as they are trying for.

Blast Coaster - http://coasternet.danimation.com - COASTERnet IV - COMING AUGUST 1ST!
Friday, July 27, 2001 7:31 PM
The reason I enjoy SLC's is that I am tall so my head doesn hit the OTSR. Because of that, I can overlook that bad aspect of the ride and enjoy its' great layout.

I wouldn't be surprised if in the next year or two we see a floorless debut in this park; it just seems natural, if you know what I mean.

I am proud of Six Flags. In the several years of ownership they have pumped a LOT of great coasters into this park. And most people aren't complaining about poor operations, which is always good. Until I visit it for myself, I can't really hold an opinion of the park, but nonetheless I'm impressed by what I see and hear!

A New World. A New Technology. One Last Hope for Salvation. Neon Genesis Evangelion
Friday, July 27, 2001 7:58 PM
after 21 years of PKD, SFA is now my favourite park!!! thats all i have to say....next year, im totally gettin a SF pass!!!!


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