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Buckeye Brad

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Buckeye Brad last won the day on April 22 2012

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About Buckeye Brad

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    Cincinnati, Ohio

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  1. I am curious about B&M giga coaster chain lifts. My limited coaster understanding In the 90s was that coaster chain lifts above 200’ were heavy and reaching the practical limit. This appeared to be confirmed in 2000 when Steel Dragon utilized dual chains, and Millennium Force introduced a cable lift. Flash forward to 2012, and Leviathan breaks 300’ with what appears to be a traditional chain lift. Not only that, it’s quite fast, and there’s no return trough hanging below... it’s enclosed in the beefy track. This has obviously been successful with Fury and now Orion. So my question is, what’s special about B&M giga chain lifts? How did they seemingly so simply solve this problem that other engineers did not?
  2. I ride KC a lot from 1985-1991 as a teen. My experiences were almost always smooth. It had a bit of an edge to it because the tall restraints felt a bit shaky, but I never had discomfort or even head banging. I also learned how to adjust the restraints quickly while boarding: equal clearance above the shoulders and below the crotch. This provided airtime up top, and protection down below. Carefully looking at the layout photos of KC, you may notice that it has a certain elegance, and smoother transitions between elements, that Vortex for example did not. This elegance helped provide a smoother ride in my opinion. The loading was always slow. Two train stacking was the norm due to lots of customized adjustments by the operators to most every seat. Even short lines took longer than expected. One unique feature was the abrupt final brake run. I learned to relax my body right before, providing a weird forward air time. Another unique feature was a station flyby just after the helix. After exiting the train, you could stand periously close to the next train speeding out of the helix, close enough to see the contorted faces of the riders. Another memory is the forced exit though the Safari themed gift shop. One of the fancier KI shops. In my final analysis, KC was a fun, consistent ride, always worth a <25 minute wait. It was a great compliment to Vortex, and had great theming, especially in the early years. I rode Skyrider in 2014, and sadly it was painful and did not match my memories of King Cobra.
  3. I also rode X2, on my first ever visit to SFMM this past summer. My thoughts... 1. It looks awesome and intimidating 2. In theory it’s fantastic ride... the rotation was a gimmick, but a really cool gimmick. 3. My first ride was rough but unique and enjoyable. My second was downright brutal. I was being shaken like crazy, and begging for it to be over. Both rides were in the same seat (front, right, outboard) but perhaps different trains. I consider my coaster pain tolerance to be above average (happily endured 3 Vortex rides in half an hour last October). But this second X2 ride was a dealbreaker for me. 4. I think there are only 2 of these because it just appears ridiculously complex and expensive, and because it's just too extreme for most of the general public. I think that beyond the hardcore coaster fans, the GP would much prefer to ride a B&M wing coaster, which looks "close enough" to this with a much more comfortable riding experience. I'm glad Arrow and Six took a risk and tried something new... But in the end I can see why other parks go a safer route. I doubt KI will install anything more "extreme" than Banshee in the foreseeable future. If Orion is anything like my rides on Leviathan, it will be a magic carpet, smooth, fast delight that will appeal to far more riders than a 4D coaster.
  4. My son and I went last year. Highlights: 1. As mentioned, the freedom to roam an empty park. The cool weirdness of seeing the park in "winter mode" (no flowers or landscaping, many rides disassembled) 2. Getting up close and personal with the Intamin coaster trains. Millennium force and Dragster trains were on the midways near their stations, separated into cars and up on risers. Very nerdy, but I actually laid down on the cold pavement to look underneath at the mechanics of the wheels and axles. It's cool how complex and heavy duty everything is. 3. The separate trip to the Amazement Shop” on the mainland. More up close and personal encounters with most every coaster train, many stripped down to the frame. Also enjoyed the newly painted Corkscrew cars and the huge paint booth. 4. The hotel laundry room. Those machines are big. Really big. 5. The overall VIP feeling. It was cold so they passed out hats. Plenty of hot chocolate. Every employee we encountered was enthusiastic and eager to share and answer our questions. It’s a 4 hour drive, and therefore maybe a once or twice a decade activity for us. But we’re very glad we went.
  5. Fishleehooker, I believe Diamonbacks supports are "different" because there are buildings and pathways where the typical "triangle" supports would bottom out. The splashdown zone might affect the support placement too.Looks like the B&M engineers used lots of ingenuity to fit Diamondback's first hill over that busy part of Rivertown. Orion (and most every other B&M Giga and Hyper I've seen) is built over more of a clean slate type of land.
  6. Shawn, Tennessee Tornado was not “redone”... rather it was built from the ground up with a more modern track design and smoother transitions, and I believe better trains, than previous Arrow designs (like Vortex). I’ve ridden Tennessee Tornado on 2 occasions. Both times I was impressed by the smoothness and the great (albeit short) ride. If Vortex was designed and (re)built in the same manner, I believe it would be outstanding.
  7. I stopped by for a few hours last night (Saturday), 8:30-11. Beast, Vortex,Mystic Timbers were all walk ons. Vortex 2 train op. Diamondback line was 10 minutes. Urgent Scare was 5 minutes.
  8. It’s fun to imagine if the late Will Koch (Holiday World) could have owned KI. I remember reading an interview that he loved KI, and that Beast inspired his love of wooden coasters +woods+terrain. Combine his enthusiasm, service values, and wooden coaster operations* with a park the size of KI... *Not knocking KI's wood coaster operations...they are better than most In my opinion. But my first trip to HW in 2000 and then riding Voyage in 2006 opened my eyes to what wooden coasters could be. When I rode Legend and Son of Beast in their opening months, I immediately realized that HW got the far better wood coaster that year.
  9. The Screamin’ Demon closing was mostly painless for us. Late in the summer of 1987 (Vortex opening year), I read an Enquirer article that Amazon (Congo) Falls was coming in 1988, and Demon would be leaving to make room. While my friends and I liked Demon... 1. A full summer of enjoying Vortex made the Demon less necessary 2. The loss of Demon was simultaneously tempered with the announcement of what looked to be a fun water ride (and an overall improvement) 3. We still could get our backwards coaster fix on Recar. We were still a bit bummed because it left KI with only 5 coasters (4 adult coasters) and we would rather have not lost even a mediocre one, but after Vortex we were hopeful that KI would continue with bigger and better coasters in the next decade.
  10. Hawaiian Coasters 325, My prediction is that from the parking lot, Orion's first hill will look roughly the same height as WindSeeker. Maybe a bit shorter. Both are a similar height, and some eyeballing on Google Earth indicates that they are a similar distance from the center of the parking lot. I'm not sure about the elevation changes between the sites though.
  11. Before you enlighten them, ask them what they specifically think is dangerous. The trains derailing? The trains colliding? The structure failing and falling? The restraints failing and a rider falling out? Perceived Extreme G forces causing injury? Hitting a bird in the face (sorry Fabio)? A personal reason (bad experience perhaps)? Their answer may help direct your response.
  12. Yesterday (Sunday), we saw several test runs in the afternoon. Some trains with water dummies, some without. Some isolated trains, some multiple train operation. At least one that paused on the curve just before the drop for several minutes. No real insights or reopening prediction, but nice to see trains testing. In other news, Blue Streak was closed all day due to flooding. The CP employee at the entrance said that the water was rising. So without BS and Valravn, that area of the the park was quite desolate.
  13. Great report Shaggy! Coincidentally we took a California trip also...we hit Disneyland on June 9 and SFMM on June 11. My first trips to both. I agree with everything you said about Galaxy's Edge. However, our disappointment over Rise of the Resistance being not yet open was negated by another surprise (to us) Star Wars ride... Hyper Space Mountain. This was so awesome! The music track, the tie fighters, the sound effects... To us this was even cooler than Smuggler's Run. Up to this point, Magic Kingdom was my overall favorite theme park. Disneyland gave us the perfect day, and I actually now prefer it to Orlando. Indiana Jones, Hyperspace Mountain, Matterhorn, Galaxy's Edge, and so much more. I will add that the Disneyland crowd control was very well done for us. Galaxy's Edge felt quite comfortable crowd-wise, due to the limited number of reservations.
  14. Thanks for clearing that up Shaggy. And for the "Afterburn" clarification. :^) (To me, AfterburnER was a "ride" that existed in the late ‘80’s, in a Rivertown arcade, where Diamondback was built)
  15. Shaggy, sorry to derail this thread, but I have a question about the Screamin Demon. Seems there is some confusion about whether or not it was at Fun Spot in Angola. For it's worth, I have an old Cincy Enquirer clipping from 1987 that claims it was headed for Fun Spot. Your blog (and RCDB) indicate it went straight to Camden, Furthermore, RCDB states that Afterburn at Fun Spot came from Florida. Did the Enquirer simply get the facts wrong, or did the Demon's plan change after that was written?
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