jf, I think the same was true of Knotts when it came to testing Xcelerator. I think employees are *covered*, liability-wise, under OSHA, so maybe (?) that has something to do with it? Someone smarter than me has some input perhaps? C'mon, there's PLENTY of you out there smarter than ME when it comes to certification and insurance, LOL...;)
In Ohio, a state inspector comes and puts his "Stamp of approval" on a ride, and gives the park a sticker with the year on it. The park does not need the sign off for employees of the park, as the park does this at their own discretion. But in order for the park to use the ride as part of their product line, you need the state's "OK."
I had the oppourtunity to test ride an attraction for a state inspector. It is a neat process, but for the most part, the park is responsible for making sure that the ride is ready to go for the inspection. Before the inspector got there, I was teaching people how to ride and operate it correctly, as I was the only one who had ever operated the attraction before.
So in a sense, of course employees have to ride it before the inspector gets there... how else would the park know if it was ready to be inspected? *** This post was edited by Zero-G 8/24/2004 11:56:03 AM ***
like i said in the tsunami question i had last friday ... I was there sunday and it was testing ... I was scaring people in the group picnic area as it RIPPED through the course by the picnic area... Ok NJ time to get your stuff together and get it ready for the public... I want to ride this thing so bad after being tortured with it testing on and off sunday as I sat and ate.
The ride looks really great and I can remember back in the fall when the ride was rumored to be built with steel supports. Now looking at the photos for the first time I see that the supports are steel. I think that is so weird. It kinda defeats the purpose of a woodie doesn't it?
Not really. Building with steel supports isn't exactly a new idea. The Great Escape Comet has steel supports. Something is happening to that ride that kinda defeats the purpose of a woody and it has nothing to do with the steel supports.
But that's a different discussion altogether... ;)
Ugh, I don't believe I got quoted saying "neatest"...what a dork. Yeah geekboy here.
As for a partial answer to you Jan, in general the state inspection is to allow non-employees (patrons) to ride. This does vary some from state to state and also parks have their own policies that often include no general employees until the state gives the ok. However, test rides are needed to give the manufacturers a good feel. There are things that cannot be detected by watching...sometimes you need to ride to feel something like a bad track area that may need gone over. Also in this process, there is a certain point in which the ride is handed over from the manufacturer to the state. Until then often it is only the manufacturer and subcontractors that are permitted to ride (due to liability, etc).
-Brian *** This post was edited by Wolfhound 8/24/2004 2:43:00 PM ***
I think the steel supports may be being used to lessen the impact of the northeast winter weather... since Great White at Morey's Piers in Wildwood NJ also has the steel frame wooden track layout and to tell you the truth it is the same kinda feel to me on either frame since the coaster actually rides on a normal track for a wooden coaster but i am thinking of ranking these seperately for me calling them something like Hybrid? Cause I can't really realate to a "hybrid" coaster being the #1 wood coaster I ride and yes that is a foretelling of what i think Tsunami will be...
dragonoffrost - you do realize that steel-supported wood coasters have been around for about 80 years now, right? The most famous being the Crystal Beach and Coney Island Cyclones. They've been built in all parts of the world with all kinds of weather.
Why go steel instead of wood? My guess is that it's less expansive and easier to maintain.
I have to assume that you don't need to go as wide with steel. Look at the width of Villain (a narrow footprint) compared to that of Shivering Timbers. Timbers is a little taller, but even still it's a fairly dramatic difference.
Steel is ridiculously expensive right now...prices are much more dependant on the foreign market (Japan) than wood's domestic indicators. I would say that steel is more expensive per unit than an equivalent amount of wood.
As a material, steel is stronger per unit area, i.e. what other's have hit on is that it takes less space and volume for the same strengh and stiffness. It's incorrect to say that a steel structure is stronger...they're going to engineer a wood structure and a steel structure to have the same strength so as to use as little material as possible.
The other distinct advantage steel has is in it's connections. With wood, it's nearly impossible to acheive what is called a 'moment' connection...one that restist rotational movement. It's very easy to achieve a 'moment' connection just by welding steel. This is advantageous when bracing will interfere with other aspects of the ride, a narrow footprint is desired and so on.