SFMM Sat, Jan 25th

Associated parks:
None

Sunday, January 26, 2003 6:50 PM

Went to renew my season pass with Mike "Bassistist" Miller, with Tony Milano meeting us at 11:30am. We stayed until 4pm, leaving the park for an hour to eat lunch at Hamburger Hamlet. Here's a quick recap:

X - single train, opened at 10am. I love this coaster but it sucks with a 1-train operation. We were 8th in line in our queue row and it took an hour to ride. By 11am the queue was full, which we estimated to be at least a 4-5 hour wait if not more. Of the two trains in the shed, one sat idle and the other was being worked on. The second train was never added.

Deja Vu - 20 min wait. While still a fun ride the trains now have that signature "Vekoma Rattle." The ride itself is not rough or jerky but like Stealth, X-Flight, and Batwing the Deja trains vibrate quite a bit with a sort of "loose metal" sound.

Goliath - 2-train op, 5 in wait. Ride ops were pulling up on the lap bars and on both rides the three of us had plenty of room to float over the third hill.

Colossus - how a great looking racer like this can suck so bad is no longer a mystery to me. Year by year it is slowly becoming less a wood coaster and more like Gemini as the wooden track bed is replaced by steel I-beam. In fact it is more I-beam than wood now. But unlike Gemini, which uses polyurethane wheels, Colossus still runs Morgans which means every single vibration goes right into your body.

Batman - single train op due to yearly maintenance, line seemed to be long, opted not to ride.

Riddler - 2 train op, 20 minutes wait. While not my favorite stand-up [that honor goes to Chang] I still really love the ballet-like movements of Riddler. Mr Stengel did himself proud with this leyout.

Gold Rusher - aka "the other GR." Still fun, could use more trees hiding the layout...what happened to them all?

Psyclone - one train op. So few people were riding they would only dispatch the train with "at least 17 riders." What an odd number to decide upon. Anyway despite some decent pops of air the ride still sucks and is the worst Cy-clone in existence IMHO. The only redeeming value of Psyclone: reminds you not to take the great wood coasters for granted

Ninja - single train op due to annual maintenance, 20 min wait. Still my favorite suspended it gets better and better as the trees continue to hide its layout.

Other operating coasters that we did not ride due to time constraints: Viper, Revolution, Superman, and Flashback.

Other observations:

Their Tilt-o-Whirl has been reduced to "tilt only." Because the ride is computer-driven and revolves at a constant speed the cars end up stuck along the outside, slowing rocking back and forth and rarely spinning. We were tempted to start a chorus of "Less Tilt! More Whirl!"

The log flume gets you really, really wet. Their Jet Stream flume does not. Thank god is was sunny and warm

Season Pass processing was quick and efficient.

Next up: A pre-Super Bowl visit to Knotts.

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Welcome to the New & Improved Coasterbuzz...mor with 25% more tomfoolery!

*** This post was edited by Mamoosh on 1/26/2003. ***

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Sunday, January 26, 2003 8:59 PM

The more I hear about MM the less I am impressed. Thanks for the TR Moosh.

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Coming in 2003-The Spawn Of Magnum!

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Monday, January 27, 2003 4:17 AM
MagF - Don't forget that because its one of my home parks I tend to be a little jaded about it. Despite its faults SFMM still has a lot going for it and is better than many other SF parks I've been to. It is neither as bad nor as good as those who really love it or hate it claim the park to be.

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Welcome to the New & Improved Coasterbuzz...now with 25% more tomfoolery!

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Monday, January 27, 2003 6:06 AM
What time did you ride X at? I've noticed that its lines tend to start out incredibly long, but by 2 or so in the afternoon, they thin out nicely...

My roommate went on Sunday and claimed that X was near 10 minutes between dispatches, and had also broken down twice. He never rode it. Also, Viper apparently was being run regularly with empty trains, then got stuck on the lift hill. The ride ops told them assembled crowd they didn't expect it to run at all for the rest of the day after that. After that, apparently Goliath managed to get goofed up around 2pm as well.

I'm going next weekend, but it sounds like this last Sat. and Sun. was really bad, much worse than the Sunday I went, Dec. 22nd or so. Do you know if this is normal for a Super Bowl weekend, or can I expect a bad trip there on next Sunday?

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Monday, January 27, 2003 6:19 AM

Tom - X opened with the park at 10am and we went right to the ride. We were among the first 200 or so people to get into the station and could have gotten on much sooner had we not wanted to wait for the last row.

With 8 pairs of riders ahead of us it took an hour for us to get on. That's about 210 people PER HOUR. When we walked away from the ride at 11:20 the queue was filled. Judging by how long it took us - and we were 8th in our queue row - a person entering the line probably would still be waiting at 2pm.

To anyone heading out to So Cal and going to SFMM: if you want to ride X get their early and go there first.

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Welcome to the New & Improved Coasterbuzz...tomfoolery allowed!

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Monday, January 27, 2003 6:54 AM
Wow, that sounds even worse than normal single train operation, I usually clock them at about 270 to 280 people @ hour.

Another quick question before I head off to work (and, invariably, end up cruising coaster sites instead of actually working), did they have an employee down at the fork under the station, or were people just cruising through unimpeded? I've noticed that everyone follows the rail, i.e., goes to the left side of the station. The right *always* has a shorter line, and IMHO, a better ride. If there wasn't an employee down there, that'll definitely alter my strategy for getting the most rides out of the park next Sunday.

Oh, and OH MY GOD I hurt. Never go skiing. It's the most painful thing ever.

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Monday, January 27, 2003 7:03 AM

Tom - yes, there was an employee at the fork but he was not directing traffic, at least when I passed by. Ironically we chose the right side for the very same reason you mentioned only to look over to the other side and see fewer people. LOL!

FYI, X was on the list of rides not operating along w/ Ninja, yet both rides were running, so the list is not always correct. I'd suggest getting to the park at 9am and keeping an eye on X. If you see trains cycle before the park opens chances are the ride will not have a delayed opening. Still, its best to to to X right off the bat and hit it first.

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Welcome to the New & Improved Coasterbuzz...tomfoolery allowed!

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Monday, January 27, 2003 8:49 AM

Anyone know why Psyclone will only run if enough people are on the ride???? They did the same thing when i went to SFMM and ive never been on a ride that had to have a set amount of people before they would dispatch it.

I also didnt think the ride was that bad. Not great but did have some air time and no waiting, so thats always a positive.

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Monday, January 27, 2003 8:56 AM

I have no idea, Bob.

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Welcome to the New & Improved Coasterbuzz...tomfoolery allowed!

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Monday, January 27, 2003 1:55 PM
They seem to always do that with Psyclone now. I seem to remember a website out there that an SFMM employee had, and he mentioned that on the site. It said something like "If you want to know why, e-mail me and I'll let you know." Given that his site was last updated about 3 years ago, though, I figured that that might not be worth it, so I didn't.

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Monday, January 27, 2003 2:01 PM
Bob - apparently they need 17 riders to weight down the train so it makes it full-course.

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Welcome to the New & Improved Coasterbuzz...now with 25% more tomfoolery!

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Tuesday, January 28, 2003 4:11 AM

Once again Moosh, an outstanding TR. Although I cannot STAND reading about coaster riding adventures in January, since we are about to be pummelled by 5 inches of snow tonight, but RCT will be fun on my day off.

Anyways, I completely agree with you about SFMM. It is probably the best SF park among their litter. After visiting 4 SF parks this summer, two were horrible, and two were above average. MM deserves an elite status. The only major problem of your day, must of been X, then. What a disappointment that 8 months later, they still can't figure out this prototype.

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There's nothing like a woodie...

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Wednesday, January 29, 2003 6:58 AM

Good report to read, Mamoosh, I'm really looking forward to my trip to Socal. Despite some of SFMM's operations, it still looks like a great park to someone who has never been there.

Thanks a lot for the coupons! :)

And Tom Servo, skiing is only painful if you're bad at it. ;)

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Wednesday, January 29, 2003 9:56 AM
PT300: That'd be my problem then! I just learned how to turn on Sunday (well, how to turn reliably, as opposed to making a half turn, then careening wildly down the mountain until plowing face first into the snow), and my legs are KILLING ME.

I'll try to write a TR (which will invariably be not as good as Mamoosh's) after my trip to SFMM this sunday...

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Wednesday, January 29, 2003 11:00 AM

Looking at some of the TR's everybody seems to hate Psyclone, and yet others love Georgia Cyclone and the other clones, why is that?

BTW, Nice TR Moosh.

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Emerging from the ashes of Eric 013...

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Wednesday, January 29, 2003 12:12 PM

3r1c - in addition to being slightly different layouts the biggest problems with Psyclone can be attributed to the following:

1] excessive trim braking.

2] wood coaster trains - from B&M, no less - that are way too heavy and cause excessive track wear and misalignment.

3] the replacement of much of the track bed from wood to steel I-beam.

4] sub-par maintenance [in my opinion]

-----------------
Welcome to the New & Improved Coasterbuzz...now with 25% more tomfoolery!

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Wednesday, January 29, 2003 1:37 PM
Nice TR! We will be at SFMM this coming Saturday for the first time and I am looking forward to it--just hope X is running. I am hoping we can do all there is to do there in one day :)
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Saturday, February 1, 2003 7:28 AM
Ah, thanks for the info Moosh. It seems like the other giant woodie at MM is victim of the points you mentioned also.

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Emerging from the ashes of Eric 013...

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Saturday, February 1, 2003 8:15 PM
What aboot flashback?
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"I remember the first time I had sex - I kept the receipt."- Groucho Marx
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Tuesday, February 4, 2003 8:40 PM
I'm known for my bad luck, and if X isn't open when I'm there in mid-March I will laugh hysterically before bursting into tears! Good TR Mamoosh, please keep us informed and thanks again for the coupons. :)

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Millennium Force Laps-103
**Vertigo Launches-21**

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