Cliffhanger (ride)

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Not to be confused with Cliffhanger (roller coaster).
SantaCruz BeachBoardwalk CliffhangerInFlight DSCN9414.JPG

The Cliff Hanger is a ride that is very popular, and is seen at amusement parks and traveling shows. The ride is for the intent of simulating hang gliding.


This device consist of a metal ram with a hinged end. Attached to the ram are hydraulic cylinders that push the ram upward about 65 degrees off a base trailer with supporting outriggers, or concrete set in. Attached to the opposite end of the ram the hitch is on, is a drive motor in which a circular boom is fixed. The boom primarily consist of foldable triangular truss structures. Attached to the parameter of the boom are gondola cars with kite tops. The cars are designed to hold 3 people in a laid position. In the center most models of these rides have a triangle center ornament with lights. This ride also has a very strong light package bar set, running along the perimeter of the boom. The ride most commonly uses kites, flags and banners in its operating structure to hide its skeletal lurking beams. The rides paint usually consists of neon, or bold colors. The overall design of the ride is similar to the Star Trooper ride, also manufactured by Dartron.

Ride experience[edit]

The ride starts off by the boom lifting a few feet of the ground. The boom then will start to spin. After about 3 seconds the ram bar will activate and lift the boom holding gondolas to its 65 degree tilt. Sending passengers on a swaying 50 foot fly through the air. The ride will then lower. Brakes are then activated to keep the gondolas from swinging while passengers are getting off. The Paratrooper is similar, but riders sit up instead of lying down.


This ride is built with two operating modes, manual or automatic. Most carnivals like to use the automatic mode, for it is easier on the ride as well as its operator. To activate the automatic mode all the operator has to do is lift up on the boom lever and the ride will complete its path itself. The manual mode can be used if someone needs to get off, or to shorten the ride for any reason. Most controls of these rides are fixed with a foot pedal that will deactivate controls in absence of operator.

Safety features[edit]

  • Overhead body harnesses.
  • Emergency power cut off button.
  • Activate/Deactivate controls foot pedal.
  • Anti-Swing gondola breaks.
  • Built-in computer with safety in mind that detects R.P.M. as to deactivate ride if they were too low.

Power required[edit]

80KW for drive motor.

External links[edit]