Vekoma/Arrow worked together?

Monday, December 1, 2003 12:02 AM
I read in the Rollercoaster Book by Cokey (too lazy to get the whole name, book is in my bedroom), that the Ninja in Georgia was made by Vekoma and Arrow. Did they used to be one company, then split with the departure of a few employees(like how B&M formed from walter and claude left intamin, or how interactive rides formed from the departure of gary slade from S&S( what Mr. Slade told me at IAAPA)).
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Monday, December 1, 2003 12:04 AM
Vekoma used Arrow-designed trains for many, many years.
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Monday, December 1, 2003 12:31 AM
As I understand it, it was a licensing deal that allowed (in principle) Arrow entree into the european market and allowed Vekoma access to rollercoaster technology that they did not have nor would likely have developed on their own. Vekoma paid Arrow for the right to use Arrow's technology/patents. If my understanding is incorrect, then hopefully someone will correct and we can all be enlightened.
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Monday, December 1, 2003 12:34 AM
I always thought that since Arrow and Vekoma used the same track gauge, that the trains were interchangeable. Notice how a lot of Vekoma coasters will use Arrow trains.
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Monday, December 1, 2003 6:12 AM
Heck, all you need to do to is ride a Vekoma / Arrow and you tell ME if they're not the same company... I can count on one FINGER the number of rides built by Vekoma that I would ride again.... if it was ever operating. Deja Vu. That's it.... well, maybe invertigo at PGA... ok, but only those two. As for Arrow? NONE of their traditional coasters, but I'll ride Ninja or any other suspended all day... and I'll ride X.

-Escher

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Monday, December 1, 2003 8:57 AM
Marimba - it's not so much that the trains are interchangeable as it is that Vekomas just used to use Arrow trains up until the late 90s.

I'm under the same impression of the Arrow/Vekoma relationship as prabe. And while neither company is known for silky smooth rides, I think Vekomas are noticeably "rougher" because their designs tend to lack any straight-line elements. They almost constantly twist, whereas early Arrows had straight drops, and fairly simple turns and transitions.

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Monday, December 1, 2003 10:04 AM
If you´ll ever get the chance to ride the Python at De Efteling you will leave the ride shouting: "I can´t believe its not B&M!".

Well not exatcly, but this Vekoma coaster, built in 1982 is so smooth and fun, its amazing. They added new Vekoma cars a few years ago and the ride got even faster but still no headbanging.

I don´t know how the similar designed Arrow loopscrews at Carowinds and Vegas run, but the one in the Netherlands is one of the smoothest coasters I know.

The similar Big Loop at Heide Park which still uses the old Arrow trains feels much rougher.

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Monday, December 1, 2003 10:20 AM
Can we not turn this into another arrow/vekoma bashing thread?
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Monday, December 1, 2003 12:44 PM
I guess not. Some people just don't give up...

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Monday, December 1, 2003 1:58 PM
^Where do you see arrow/vekoma bashing in this thread? O.K. escher was ranting a bit, but the other posts are dealing with similarities and differences of said companies in a productive way.


And yes, Arrow earned money on every Vekoma installation that used the Arrow track. I don´t know if this licensing contract is still intact. The Invertigo and Flyer track is a further development and is "Vekomas own".
I have no idea about the SLC track: Is it just Arrows design turned upside down? Or is it a genuine design?

If you look at the trackdesign of early Arrow loopers and corkscrews you will notice that they indeed look different from the Vekoma track that they used from their first coaster in 1979 onward.

(Pointing to the "Jolly Roger" thread: If rcdb.com is right, the Corkscrew that used to be there is the first ever built Vekoma coaster. It was the one which was originally built as a fairground coaster. But it was soon sold to "Traumlandpark" which would later become Warner Bros Movie World Germany)

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Monday, December 1, 2003 2:34 PM
I thought Ninja was actually designed by Vekoma, and just used Arrow trains. Maybe I'm just assuming here, but it seems odd to me that Kamikaze (Ninja's original name)--built in '89--has no straight sections of track from the top of the lift to the brakes, yet some of Arrow's later designs do, such as Anaconda ('91) and Drachen Fire ('92). The only exception to this that I can think of is SFStL's Ninja, which looks like it has more Arrow-like transitions than it's sibling in Georgia. So that could conceivably blow my theory to pieces, but I'll still stand by it, because I'm stubborn like that. ;)

But still, SFoG's Ninja, if it was solely designed by Vekoma, would explain the similarities between it and the modern SLC. *** Edited 12/1/2003 7:36:26 PM UTC by Vater***

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Monday, December 1, 2003 2:36 PM
tricktrack, Carolina Cyclone, IMO, was still a pretty decent ride when I was there this Spring...with the wood running like CRAZY, certainly didn't get more than an obligatory lap....but it was pretty good...:)

The Vegas coaster in the Adventuredome I didn't care for as much, but others tell me I got the *unusually bad ride* rather than a typical ride on CB (the other CB, Canyon Blaster)...;)

The Jolly Roger thread makes me sad....opporrtunities lost...:(

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Monday, December 1, 2003 4:57 PM
I don't understand the confusion in this thread. The coasters credited to Vekoma (ie Boomerangs, Vekoma corkscrews/split corkscrews such as Knoebels' Whirlwind and SFNO's Jester, and the SFoG & SFStL Ninja coasters) were Vekoma designed and built; they just used Arrow technology. To rephrase, all of the coasters out there credited to Vekoma were actually designed and built by Vekoma. They just used the same track design as Arrow coasters (which was licensed from Arrow) and, pre-1997, Arrow trains. That certainly doesn't make them Arrow rides.

-Nate (who finds Vekoma corkscrews infinitely better than the Arrow counterparts)

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Monday, December 1, 2003 5:21 PM

tricktrack said:
If you´ll ever get the chance to ride the Python at De Efteling you will leave the ride shouting: "I can´t believe its not B&M!".

Well not exatcly, but this Vekoma coaster, built in 1982 is so smooth and fun, its amazing. They added new Vekoma cars a few years ago and the ride got even faster but still no headbanging.

I don´t know how the similar designed Arrow loopscrews at Carowinds and Vegas run, but the one in the Netherlands is one of the smoothest coasters I know.

The similar Big Loop at Heide Park which still uses the old Arrow trains feels much rougher.


Don't need to ask again. The Canyon Blaster on the Las Vegas strip is probably the smoothest traditional looping Arrow coaster I've encountered yet. Very enjoyable and intense.

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Monday, December 1, 2003 7:06 PM
Wow! I actually seem to have gotten something almost correct! :-)
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Monday, December 1, 2003 7:13 PM
Has anyone else noticed the Arrow building pattern?

60's-Mine Trains

70's-Loopscrews

80's-Suspendeds

90's-Hypers

With a few exceptions for each decade of course.

I do know of a *very* short lived Arrow-Huss partnership, not to mention Arrow Development leading to Arrow Dynamics leading to S&S-Arrow, etc.

In short, Arrow had all sorts of partnerships and I think I remember another coaster where they collaboated on more than trains but I can't remeber ( brain-block).

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Monday, December 1, 2003 10:09 PM
VATER SAID "has no straight sections of track from the top of the lift to the brakes, yet some of Arrow's later designs do, such as Anaconda ('91) and Drachen Fire ('92)."

Drachen Fire was designed by B&M.

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Monday, December 1, 2003 10:16 PM
I thought the "Drachen Fire was designed by B&M" rumor was disproved a long time ago? I even remember a formal letter from B&M that specifically stated that they had no involvement with Drachen Fire posted by someone who inquired B&M with a few questions.
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Monday, December 1, 2003 10:20 PM
The whole "Drachen Fire was designed by B&M" thing doesn't seem to have mush support from what I have seen/read/heard. I think maybe it's one of those things like Magnum sinking into Lake Erie. Show me documentation and I'll consider it.
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Monday, December 1, 2003 10:35 PM
That was a major reason that the ride was so rough and transitioned badly. Arrow used the calculations that were already in place, not considering train weight, wheel assemblies, and other factors that weigh in on speed and friction, thus the roughness. Also, how many Arrow coasters can you think of with a Cobra Roll? I know of none, and that is the story I have heard with and read on websites, though the sites (other than coasterf-orce.com, escape me). I could be wrong but that is what i have read.
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