Why are so many coasters breaking down early?

Sunday, March 25, 2001 5:55 PM
I think so many coasters are breaking down early because maybe the designer of the coaster used technology that was so ahead of our time. Take for example, California Screamin at DCA. That coaster has broken down so many times because the cars wouldn't run on the track or the LIM's wouldn't work. If your going to build a great coaster, build one that will not break down early!
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Sunday, March 25, 2001 6:03 PM
California Screamin' uses LSMs not LIMs. The first ride to tamper with LSMs was Superman: The Escape, which is just about an hour and a quarter away from The Disneyland Resort. S:TE opened a year later than planned, and I suppose they are still working the bugs out with the complicated propulsion system on CS. LIM motors have also plagued coasters that accomodate them such as the Mr. Freeze: The Ride(s), and Batman & Robin: The Chiller. *** This post was edited by kRaXLeRidAh on 3/25/2001. ***
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Monday, March 26, 2001 8:34 AM
All coasters have their fair number of shutdowns in their first couple of years of operation - things are much different in an actual park rather than on a computer simulation or engineer's drawing board. Distribution of weight, weather conditions that may not affect the entire track, and other unanticipated factors. True, prototype coasters will have more than the average number of breakdowns, but that is only to be expected - only so much can be accomplished in the laboratory before you put it in the park.

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Po!nt of View: A different look at Roller Coasters.
http://www.crosswinds.net/~justmayntz/thrills/index.html
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Monday, March 26, 2001 9:34 AM
Every coaster has its share of technical glitches when it first opens. It's just part of the game. I'm sure these problems will be worked out before peak season starts.

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E.J.
Webmaster: Theme Park New England
http://tpne.8m.com
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Monday, March 26, 2001 6:46 PM
one Premier ride that has had few problems is Speed: The Ride here in vegas. It runs smooth and fast and to my knowledge has never rolled back. The only problem present was when it first opened that coming back into the station the breaks would stop it before it reached its loading/unloading position. Ride ops would have to open the breaks and "push" the train back.
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Tuesday, March 27, 2001 3:55 AM
There are bugs inherent in any new ride design. Even the clones seem to need their adjustment/break in period. Computer modules don't cooperate etc.
When Batman and Robin the Chiller opened a few years ago the first year was a nightmare. At one point every launch motor had to be replaced as well as the motors on the tower. That took almost a month or better. I remember when the Scream Machine opened it took about 3 or 4 weeks to get it running without a shutdown and even then during the hot weather the sensors would fail and have to be replaced due to overheating.
Every year when the park opens it seems that the coasters all need a little tweaking here and there. Last year during the first weeks of operation even Medusa and Batman the Ride needed adjustment and were up and down.
My point is simply that these are large, complicated, and sophisticated pieces of machinery. They are either new (not been run before continuously) or have been sitting for up to six months in some cases. The maintenance crews at all the parks seem to do their level best to have everything ready to go for opening day. Yet there are still hidden problems that are not found until actual operation of the ride commences.
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Tuesday, March 27, 2001 6:06 AM
zeusagis - you make an excellent point (well, several actually): the coasters have "not been run before continuously". No matter how many years a coaster is a prototype or how many computer designs it has gone through, little stress-testing can compare to a full day's operation in variable weather conditions (cool/wet in the morning, hot during the day, sudden storms, lightning), ride loads, winds, etc. Every new thing always takes some breaking in like that when you're considering how coasters are primarily specialized for the park/land/load/climate they are designed for. Even if you took a tried-and-true (let's say Magnum) and moved it to a different park, it would still have the breaking-in period.

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Po!nt of View: A different look at Roller Coasters.
http://www.crosswinds.net/~justmayntz/thrills/index.html
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Tuesday, March 27, 2001 6:23 AM
When you think about it, alot of the coasters being built this year are either prototypes or new concepts.
Hypersonic XLC is a prototype. It's been breaking down.

California Screamin' uses a relatively new concept, LSM's, and has been breaking down.

V² is a pretty new concept and it may have some early trouble.

The Vekoma tilt coaster and Gio tilt coaster being built in Japan and Europe are new and they will probably have some problems.

X is a totally new concept. It could have problems.

Acrophobia might have trouble tilting outward 15°.

The new flying coasters, only one year of experience with Stealth.

Most of the coasters having problems are prototypes or new concepts and as these coasters evolve and get more intense, higher faster, etc. the machine they use get more complex and need more care.
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May 5th, Gurnee, Illinois, "I'm sprinting for Deja Vu!" *** This post was edited by SFGA2001 on 3/27/2001. ***
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Tuesday, March 27, 2001 8:24 AM
Do think that the parks that go first-to-market with these new technology rides receive price breaks (not brakes) from the ride manufacturers/designers?

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My name is Jason, and I'm addicted to coasters.
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Tuesday, March 27, 2001 8:29 AM
Ruffryder.....what do you suggest? no more prototypes ever?

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Don't touch the watch.
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