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homestar92

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homestar92 last won the day on June 14 2015

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About homestar92

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  1. That was part of the fun of the Banshee cam. You could see the entire ride from the camera's position so it felt significantly less pointless.
  2. Unless there are under-the-hood differences in the trains such as different wheels or differences in the way they articulate, they are the same style trains as Vortex. Same body, seat, and OTSR design at least. I kinda doubt there are differences at all though. There's really nothing inferior with Arrow's looper train design when compared to anything else that existed when they were in business. The headbanging reputation that Arrows have is more due to Ron Toomer's design philosophy than the trains. In fact, having ridden Tennessee Tornado and Phantom's Revenge, I would say that their trains are among the most comfortable out there (excluding vest restraints which are an obvious improvement) when a modern track design is used. Tennessee Tornado is less headbangy than many B&Ms with the old restraints and definitely less so than most Vekomas.
  3. Is... Is there an intentional reference in there to a certain KICer who I think we all miss?
  4. Great trip report as always, and thanks for all the nice pictures of Vortex (both in this post and in the past). Vortex is really special to me. I sure don't have anywhere near 1200 rides on it, but it's my most ridden ride by a landslide as well. The park is sure going to be different next year. Vortex has always been my constant thing that I ride every single visit to the park. Maybe it's the emotions talking and things will change in the coming months, but for now, I don't see this hobby ever being the same for me. I already renewed my platinum pass for next year, so I'm going to try and keep enjoying the park, but it might be time for me to move on to a new hobby now with Vortex gone. We will see what the future holds. Since my #1 and #2 rides have been removed over the last two seasons, I would just like to announce loudly and publicly that my favorite coaster is now Invertigo. Yep. Definitely Invertigo. Golly, I sure love that ride bunches and it sure would be a darn shame if it were the next coaster to leave.
  5. There is though because a US dollar is worth 1.31 Canadian. That's a pretty hefty savings even with the sales tax being more than double what it is in Mason.
  6. I will enjoy my Vortex rides, as I always do... But I can tell you that for me and probably many others, it will probably not be a happy day. There will be tears, and probably not only from me.
  7. However, it is very likely that they share many common parts and therefore Firehawk's train could still be useful as a parts donor.
  8. I get what you're getting at, but Vortex doesn't really fit that profile actually. Vortex's ridership is still higher (as of 2014 which was the last time stats were published, anyway) than many coasters that are perceived (perhaps falsely) as being more "popular" and it has historically not been an expensive coaster to operate. I highly, highly doubt that corporate arbitrarily told them they need to get rid of a coaster, even if there was one with above average maintenance cost and below average ridership (Firehawk fit that bill, but the reason for its removal is quite obvious and was definitely not a last minute decision). All we will ever have is speculation, but the closest thing we have to a "consensus" among those speculating is that something is damaged in a way that would be extremely expensive to fix. The apparent suddenness of the announcement would also seem to point that way. In my mind, the most likely thing is metal fatigue or other structural issues that would require complete replacement rather than a patch job. However, deep down in my mind, I would really appreciate the irony if it turns out the reason it's going away ended up being because a sinkhole formed under it. That would actually make me chuckle, which is something I haven't done much of regarding this removal. One did form seemingly out of nowhere under the Corvette museum, so I suppose that's a thing that can happen.
  9. Did they turn on Vortex's tracer lights at Winterfest the last two years? Seems weird to turn those on for a coaster that's closed for the year. They never ran Son of Beast's lift hill lights after it went SBNO.
  10. I've ridden a great many B&M Inverts and I can say that in my experience, Banshee does have a noticeable rattle that doesn't exist on any of the others, and is my second least favorite B&M Invert besides Patriot at WoF. Banshee is definitely the least smooth of all of them. In fact, the only reason it beats out Patriot (which is far smoother) is because Patriot's layout is unbelievably boring. Shame, too, since it has my number one all time favorite paint job on a roller coaster besides maybe the Joker at SFDK (seeing a coaster with two different colored track rails was so different that I had to love it)
  11. Mantis and Vortex (CA Great America) got overhauls while remaining largely the same ride (stand-up to floorless conversion). Obviously that's not happening to Vortex, as nobody makes floorless trains compatible with Arrow track. Hurler at Kings Dominion and Mean Streak both got RMC'd. However, I would argue those are a whole new coaster. If there were any RMC-like treatment for steel coasters, this would be the most likely chance of Vortex not *really* going away. But no such conversion exists, so this won't be happening. The Flying Cobras at Carowinds got a new Vekoma train upon its relocation to replace the old Arrow train it ran at Geauga Lake. If anything were happening to Vortex that would cause it to not actually be leaving, this is it. Though, I don't think the park would try to claim the ride was being "retired" if that were the case, but rather renovated. Especially with Vortex being a staple of Kings Island and one of the most immediately recognizable coasters in the world, nobody would fall for it as a "new" ride the way they did with Rougarou. If there is some plan to upgrade Vortex in some way, this is what it would be, though the odds of that are a million to one. Frankly, if Vortex were in a good enough state that new trains would breath new life into it, then there would be no reason to do that as it still gets great ridership with the old ones. The interesting one to take note of was at a SIX park. Ninja at Six Flags over Georgia (a Vekoma, but in terms of track design they are Arrow's closest relative) got new paint, trains, and extensive track work in its conversion to Blue Hawk. If Vortex has any future (and that's a big if, and one that I've already come to terms with simply not being the case) then that would be it. Technically speaking, you could maybe get away with marketing it as a new coaster so it would explain the "retired" verbiage, but the 99.9% certain reality is that Kings Island is going to look very, very weird, empty, and wrong to a lot of us next year. All that said, don't get your hopes up guys. There are very few people on this planet who love Vortex more than me, so believe me that it brings me unbelievable pain to say this, but the old girl is done. Get your rides in before the 27th and say your goodbyes because you aren't getting another opportunity. I would absolutely love to be wrong. It would literally make my year if I'm wrong. But I just don't think that I am. And as much as I would have loved a farewell season, at least we got a little bit of warning and time to say our goodbyes. That's more than the Son of Beast or Tomb Raider fans got, and for that much, I'm grateful.
  12. While I GREATLY prefer Cedar Fair parks, and I love the way they manage Kings Island, now that the imminent threat is gone and I can think more rationally, I don't think Six Flags would be the death knell of Kings Island if a theoretical merger happened. I certainly don't WANT Six Flags Kings Island to ever be a thing, but realistically, the park would survive. They have at least one park that is very Kings Island-y in Six Flags Great America, and I actually love that park (it's my second favorite right after KI, in fact). I think they could actually manage KI fine and the things that they would change for the worse are fairly minor things in the grand scheme. Almost every other park in the chain, I think they could do fine. In fact, I think many of the smaller FUN parks would see far increased capex if they were to get "flagged". Heck, Worlds of Fun in particular has an extremely Six Flags vibe to it in my opinion already. Cedar Point, however, would definitely suffer under Six Flags ownership. Mostly because it's so incredibly different from any other seasonal park out there. Six Flags certainly has no experience running a park like that. Especially not when you consider the beach and all the activities available there, the two hotels, the campground and cabins, etc. That's the one that I don't ever want to see fall into Six Flags's hands. Especially because "Six Flags Cedar Point" sounds icky and wrong. There's always the possibility it wouldn't get rebranded, but it's generally only the very small parks that don't, like Great Escape and La Ronde. In my perfect world, The chains would merge, Six Flags would relocate Whizzer onto Vortex's plot of land for some reason, and then somehow the merge would be undone and everything would go back to how it was before, but with Whizzer now located only 20 minutes from my home. This is my favorite timeline (other than Vortex remaining where it sits, naturally).
  13. If you have a group of 6 or more, the cabins and cottages at Lighthouse Point turn into a great deal since the price per person ends up well under 100 most days. I prefer the cottages over the cabins because of the patio with the lake view, but on my last stay, the cabin I was in was essentially directly under Maggie's turnaround, which was a really cool thing to wake up to out the window.
  14. Most of the people I associated with (this was long before I was interested in roller coasters so I was associating with non-enthusiasts) interpreted the news as Cedar Point, not Cedar Fair, being the ones acquiring the park, and believed that we were going to be getting a 300+ foot coaster every year from now on. Obviously, that was not realistic, but people had a certain perception about Cedar Point and were expecting that Kings Island would turn into Cedar Point South. Which I am thankful didn't happen. I don't think they would encounter any issues with such a merger. Keep in mind, the two chains really aren't in competition as it is because there is very little overlap in their current markets. Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay area are the only markets where both currently operate a park, and in both of those markets there are other amusement parks outside of either chain.
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