Wow, I remember seeing the prototype footage on television when it was first released, it struck me as impossible to corkscrew a swinging suspended then, and it does even more now, I can imagine one or more of the shocks failing or downrods cracking and then POW here comes a 1000 lb fiberglass bucket with 600lbs of people in it careening towards the crowd, Hey its Bowling for Park Patrons! I can certainly see how the Bat would have been the cause of someones death or serious injury had it continued to operate. I think it was a wise choice to close it and avoid all the carnage, Hey I know, lets tie a playground swing to the bumper of a Ferrari and have the driver do repeated, High speed U turns till the chains break..... No but seriously, I 've ridden both Ninja SFMM and Vampire @ Chessington with the original trains, and I felt kinda unsafe with all that mechanica over my head, not to mention the vinyl tarps/diapers to keep our hands out of the gears oh and to catch the oil drips...... Um, I love thrills, but safe ones, Give Me a B&M Invert any day, I dont wanna die for fun...... Wow, Im pretty mouthy for a new guy, Huh?
First: I want to say the single Biggest THANK YOU to all those people who posted these great finds on one of the rarest of all coasters- and SECOND only to the Crystal Beach Cyclone as one I'd build a time machine to go and ride-
I've been researching (So far quite nearly impossible) the Bat to make a model of the Bat in all it's glory. It is TRULY a shame that no park has taken the initiative to build an updated version of this amazing ride- the simple geomertry and use of high speed curves, and the sensual and subtle actions of the train movments are certainly a rarity- and if the videos posted are anything to be judged by, a graceful ride no less. Having ridden a majority of the existing suspended/'swigning' coasters produced, I have yet to see even the Mighty BBW do things that the Bat did- and I truly love BBW.
Perhaps S&S Arrow should REALLY REALLY REALLY Consider reading this thread- and perhaps someody should get off their duff and get to work on one- A rebuild of BAT would be a treasure that the coaster enthusiast community as well as the general public searching for an ever increasing thrill threshold. Mabye Knoebels, purveyors of classic coastering could introduce the first 'new' BAT as their first 'preserved' steel coaster?
It would be amazing to see the Bat done again with banked turns and a workable lasting and more reliable suspension system, and It is very cool that these historical materials are available to show us the progression from invention to trial, to park installation, to alterations in the industry, and finally to the viable working lasting rides we have today. Bravo to the keepers of these examples, So interesting to see the progression, and how far the engineers have come by learning from their own work.
Heres some Info from Wikipedia
The Bat was a state-of-the-art coaster that was only open sporadically. After SBNO (Standing But Not Operating) for an extensive period of time, on November 9, 1984, park officials announced the ride would be dismantled. Over the next two years the ride was removed.
The problems that plagued the ride and ultimately led to its closure included:
Excessive stress on the supports and track due to unbanked track.
Excessive stress on the wheels due to brake fins being mounted at bottom of the swinging cars.
Excessive stress on the trains' shock absorbers due to violent swinging.
Hairline cracks on wheels and chassis.
Arrow Dynamics went on to perfect the suspended coaster, starting with AstroWorld's XLR-8 in 1984. XLR-8 operated successfully for 2 decades, however was demolished after the closure of AstroWorld. XLR-8 was quickly followed by Busch Gardens Williamsburg's Big Bad Wolf. The Big Bad Wolf was, and continues to be, a success, due in large part to lessons learned from The Bat. However, it was also plagued with excessive downtime and an embarrassing grand opening delay in its first season.
i was lucky enough to visit WSMK in 1976 (well -- i guess that goes without saying; when ELSE could i have visited) when i was about 7 or so, on vacation in Atlanta. like someone in one of your previous posts, i could remember very little about the place -- despite being a huge fan of all the Krofft shows, the park had precious little to do with its TV counterparts. (the pinball machine ride left a stamp on my brain, but little else.)
in fact, after a good 20 years of telling people about the park -- especially in the pre-internet years -- i met with so little affirmation that this place had actually ever existed, i became convinced that i had dreamed the whole thing... that is, until i read about it in a Krofft book in the 90s. talk about obscure.
hopefully with the upcoming Land Of The Lost feature film, there will be a renewed interest in all things Krofft, and maybe more information will start to resurface. thanks again.
I hope all of your summers have been as good as mine. I have been busy hitting several parks with my kids; SFMM (love the retro Revolution trains), SFGAdv (LOVE El Toro!!!!), Hersheypark (ehh Fahrenheit was just ok but love the park), Legoland (my kids still love legos) and Lagoon (hey it is my home park). We have also been incorporating other activities into our summer vacations such as Comic Con, River Rafting, Mountain Biking, camping and boogey boarding at the beach.
Of course the highlight of my Summer was the TPR trip to Europe!!!!! (thanks Robb & Elissa) I had such a great time and visited some really great parks with great friends.
One thing I have really missed this summer is posting to Shane’s Amusement Attic. I am thrilled to see that this thread has made it into the top 20 most visited! So as a summer bonus, here is one of my most favorite things I have in my attic: 2 Schwarzkopf ride catalogs. ANTON ROCKS!
I have one big trip planned for the end of the summer: Canada’s Wonderland, Darien Lake and Niagara Falls. Then I will be back with Season 2 and weekly updates to the attic.
I am gonna start off with just a couple of quick shots of summer fun then the Schwarzkopf goodness. Hope you enjoy and keep the comments coming. I am not as big of a attention whore as Big Mike (lol) but still love to here your thoughts on items posted.
Me and my sons West & Fisher attend our first Comic Con. Lets just say it was "interesting"
an Elvis stormtrooper makes an appearance at Comic Con in San Diego
We had a GREAT day at Magic Mountain, even with the 2 hour wait for X2. I gotta say it again I love the retro Revolution train!
West & Fisher are like their dad, they like the old-school coasters.
Legoland's new splash battle. I was dissapointed in this ride compared to some of the others I saw over in Europe
Our summer travels also took us to the mountain resort of Sundance Utah.
Fisher does the ropes course
and of course no trip to the mountains is complete without river rafting!
Now onto some Anton goodness. Me with Anton a long, long time ago
Here is the second catalog I have. From the looks of this, I need to give my scanner a good cleaning, sorry about that
I sure with Six Flags over Texas would get retro with the ShockWave the way that Magic Mountain has done with the Revolution. It looked so good when it first opened all bright white with those brilliant blue trains!
I have now riden every shuttle loop except for the two originals. I need to take a trip to Africa and Brazil. Montezooma is still the best!
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