Space Mountain: from the Earth to the Moon

Saturday, November 22, 2003 6:22 PM
Does anyone know exactly how the launching system on Space Mountain: from the Earth to the Moon at DLP works? I know it doesn't use LIMs or LSMs. Does it use a catapult launch system similar to Schwarzkopf shuttles?
Saturday, November 22, 2003 7:01 PM
I have no idea what you're talking about.
Saturday, November 22, 2003 7:37 PM
What a helpful reply...maybe I can help.

After discovering the very informative Unofficial Space Mountain homepage, I learned a thing or two about the Paris ride. You are correct, the ride is neither an LIM or LSM, but instead consists of a hook that catches under the train, pulls it to the launch hill, then rapidly accelerates, much like an aircraft carrier launch. It is considered an "electric-motor-propelled catapult". There is a rumor (unconfirmed) that the ride now launches from halfway up the hill because the launch from the bottom was too fast, but in any event, I think that's your answer.

I got my info from You can go there to find out more or go to the Unofficial Space Mountain homepage at to find out more about the other Space Mountains.

Saturday, November 22, 2003 7:54 PM
Sorry about that. I don't understand any of these cryptic initials.
Saturday, November 22, 2003 8:46 PM
Then do some studying ;)

Dave is pretty much right on. Imagine Millennium Force's lift hill, but instead of having a elevator lift motor and spool all the way down on the ground, there are LSM's (or LIM's. Not sure) mounted directly underneath the track (This is from what I noticed while riding). Once you leave the station, you go around two turns, a small drop, then head up the lift. The brakes on the lift stop and hold the train, the catch car locks in place, then the train launches. The launch is actually really cool, although not powerful by any of todays "standards".

The train does stop about 1/3rd of the way up the hill, and then the launch goes for another 1/3rd or so, then you slow down and go over the top of the hill and into the building.

I've got a POV of it around here somewhere... Let's see if I can find it. *** Edited 11/23/2003 1:53:10 AM UTC by rOLLocOASt***

Saturday, November 22, 2003 10:49 PM
No LSM or LIM on Space Mountain... Basically, you got a second track under the main one. A huge pusher cart is on the second track. A huge spool at the bottom is linked to the cart by a steel cable that runs from the spool, to the top, then down to the cart.

The spool is connected to 2 electric motors (next to the cannon is a huge concrete slab... the motors are under there). The pusher has a rubber nose, that push against a small piece under the fourth car.

How is the train lauched? Simple, the motors wrap and unwrap the cable on the spool... launching the trains.

The train is launched from halfway through for capacity reason (we need the extra block given by the bottom of the cannon to run 5 trains... yes 2 trains can fit in the cannon).

Saturday, November 22, 2003 11:08 PM
Hey Absimilliard you sound like a cast member....or have lot of stories/info about Space Mountain Paris. Could you care to share anything you know. This coaster is on top 10 must ride list.
Sunday, November 23, 2003 2:35 AM

Coasterjosh said:I don't understand any of these cryptic initials.

Cryptic? No, that'd be something like M:TCFKAB (TM, Rideman). ;)

And I suppose you wouldn't know who CPNut is either, eh? *** Edited 11/23/2003 7:37:19 AM UTC by Michael Darling***

Sunday, November 23, 2003 10:04 PM
Yes, I was a cast member on Space Mountain at DLP from november 2000 to august 31st 2001.

Any other questions on Space Mountain?

Sunday, November 23, 2003 10:17 PM
anything than's not printed or and interesting storys you have?

BTW...Is the 3rd inversion "the tongue" really an inversion.

Also do all of the effect than open with the ride the cannon and such?

Sunday, November 23, 2003 10:53 PM
The third inversion? Look at the cutback that was on Drachen Fire. The Tongue is Vekoma version of the Cutback. There's a picture of the Tongue circulating on the web. I personally fell its an inversion. (Slower and you get a true "we're gotta fall out!" feeling absent from the Intamin overbanked turn)

Effects that don't work? Off the top of my mind:

The recoil of the cannon

the sun does not move (its on the cannon)

No huge blast of vapor (the smoke of the cannon)

Some effects inside the ride don't work

Sunday, November 23, 2003 11:03 PM
Not recoil, no vaper.....that sucks

Are things that have been given up on...or will be worked on during the next rehab?

In regards to the tongue...I l've heard you only bank 90 degree....

Sunday, November 23, 2003 11:30 PM
The Sun and recoil not working goes back to the company (a french contractor) that originally installed the effects. Sometimes, they'll get the recoil working for a few days, but its takes weeks for maintenance to fix it up...

The Tongue is exactly like the Cutback.

Monday, November 24, 2003 12:11 AM
I didn't even know the sun did anything....what diud it do?

That's ashame that the canon effect don't work well. I am guessing the company that own DLP or is it now PDL is as cheap as disney here. It really pathitic that all this time and money goes into this stuff and could be working again with a the systems being modified.

Has the ride gotten rough over the years and does the music always work?

Also do you know were that picture of the tongue can be found?

Monday, November 24, 2003 3:20 AM
What exactly is "the recoil"?
Monday, November 24, 2003 1:36 PM
There is a picture of the model of Discovery Mountain in the book "Imagineering: A Behind the Dreams Look at Making the Magic Real" that shows the 'tongue'.
Friday, November 28, 2003 10:15 AM
Thanks everyone!

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