Dive Coaster

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This article is about the roller coaster model. For the Dive Coaster at Chimelong Paradise, see Dive Coaster (Chimelong Paradise). For the Dive Coaster at Happy Valley Shanghai, see Diving Coaster.
Dive Coaster
AltonTowers-Oblivion.JPG
Oblivion's main drop at Alton Towers in the United Kingdom.
Status In Production
First manufactured 1998
No. of installations 9
Manufacturer Bolliger & Mabillard
Vehicle type Floorless or normal seats located above the track
Riders per row 6 - 10
Restraint Style Over-the-shoulder
Dive Coaster at RCDB

A Dive Coaster (previously known as Diving Machine) is a type of steel roller coaster manufactured by Bolliger & Mabillard where riders experience a moment of free-falling with at least one 90-degree drop. Unlike other roller coasters where the lift hill takes the train directly to the first drop, a Dive Coaster lift hill leads to a flat section of track followed by a holding brake which stops the train just as it enters the vertical drop. After a few seconds, the train is released into the drop.

Development of the Dive Coaster began between 1994 and 1995 with Oblivion at Alton Towers opening on March 14, 1998, making it the world's first Dive Coaster. The trains for this type of coaster are relatively short consisting of two to three cars. Bolliger & Mabillard have recently begun to also use floorless trains on this model to enhance the experience. As of 2014, seven Dive Coasters have been built with two planned to open in 2015 at Efteling and Gardaland.

Krake going through a "splashdown" at Heide Park in Germany

History[edit]

According to Walter Bolliger, development of the Dive Coaster began between 1994 and 1995.[1] On March 14, 1998, the world's first Dive Coaster, Oblivion, opened at Alton Towers. Though Oblivion is classified as a Dive Coaster, it does not have a true vertical drop as the drop angle is 88.8-degrees.[2] Two years later, the second Dive Coaster built, Diving Machine G5, opened at Janfusun Fancyworld and also does not have a vertical drop.[3] In 2005, SheiKra opened at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and was the first Dive Coaster to feature a 90-degree drop and a splashdown element.[4][5] In 2007, Busch Gardens Williamsburg announced that Griffon would be the first ever Dive Coaster to feature floorless trains[6] and SheiKra would have its trains replaced with floorless ones.[7] Since SheiKra and Griffon, all Dive Coasters manufactured after them have a 90-degree vertical drop, a splashdown element, and floorless trains.[8] In 2011, the first 'mini' Dive Coaster opened at Heide Park Resort, named Krake. Unlike other Dive Coaster's, Krake has smaller trains consisting of three rows of six riders. [9]

Design[edit]

An example of a Floorless Dive Coaster train on SheiKra.

The design of a Dive Coaster can vary sightly from one to another. Depending on the amusement park's request, one row on the train can seat anywhere from 6 to 10 riders. stadium seating is also used to give every rider a clear view. Next, compared to standard Bolliger & Mabillard 4 abreast cars, because of the extra weight of each car on a Dive Coaster, the size of the track must be larger than other B&M models (such as the Hyper Coaster) to support the weight.[10] At the top of the primary vertical drop, a braking system holds the train for 3 to 5 seconds, giving riders a view of the drop ahead before being released into the drop.[11][12]

In the station, Dive Coasters that use non-floorless trains simply use a standard station. With Dive Coasters that use floorless trains, in order to allow riders to load and unload the train, a movable floor is necessary. Because the front row has nothing in front of it to stop riders from walking over the edge of the station, a gate is placed in front of the train to prevent this from happening. Once all the over-the-shoulder restraints are locked, the gate opens and the floor separates into several pieces and moves underneath the station.[11] When the next train enters the station, the gate is closed and the floors are brought back up where the next riders board.[11]

Installations[edit]

Bolliger & Mabillard has built seven Dive Coasters as of 2014 with two planned to open in 2015. The roller coasters are listed in order of opening dates.

Name Park Country Opened Status
Oblivion Alton Towers United Kingdom United Kingdom March 14, 1998 Operating [2]
Diving Machine G5 Janfusun Fancyworld Taiwan Taiwan March 29, 2000 Operating [3]
SheiKra Busch Gardens Tampa Bay United States United States May 21, 2005 Operating [4]
Griffon Busch Gardens Williamsburg United States United States May 18, 2007 Operating [13]
Dive Coaster Chimelong Paradise China China January 21, 2008 Operating [14]
Diving Coaster Happy Valley Shanghai China China August 16, 2009 Operating [15]
Krake Heide Park Resort Germany Germany April 16, 2011 Operating [9]
Unknown Gardaland Italy Italy March 28, 2015 In Development [16]
Unknown Efteling Netherlands Netherlands 2015 In Development [17]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "IAAPA 2011 Trade Show Part 4 Theme Park Review Fishpipe Water Ride B&M Zamperla". Theme Park Review. YouTube. November 16, 2012. Retrieved October 8, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Marden, Duane. "Oblivion  (Alton Towers)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b Marden, Duane. "Diving Machine G5  (Janfusun Fancyworld)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b Marden, Duane. "SheiKra  (Busch Gardens Tampa Bay)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Splashdown Bolliger & Mabillard". Retrieved October 8, 2012. 
  6. ^ "Griffon at Busch Gardens Williamsburg Roller Coaster Review". About.com. Retrieved October 18, 2012. 
  7. ^ "SheiKra to have new floorless trains installed". Coaster-net. February 2, 2007. Retrieved October 18, 2012. 
  8. ^ "Bolliger & Mabillard Dive Machine". Roller Coaster Database. Retrieved July 23, 2012. 
  9. ^ a b Marden, Duane. "Krake  (Heide Park Resort)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Scott & Carol Present: Getting On Track With B&M". NewsPlusNotes. December 11, 2008. Retrieved October 8, 2012. 
  11. ^ a b c "Griffon (HD)". SeanFlaharty. August 16, 2009. Retrieved October 8, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Coaster opens May 25". Daily Press. March 21, 2007. Retrieved October 17, 2012. 
  13. ^ Marden, Duane. "Griffon  (Busch Gardens Williamsburg)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  14. ^ Marden, Duane. "Dive Coaster  (Chimelong Paradise)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  15. ^ Marden, Duane. "Diving Coaster  (Happy Valley Shanghai)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 21, 2012. 
  16. ^ Marden, Duane. "unknown  (Gardaland)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved April 11, 2014. 
  17. ^ Marden, Duane. "unknown  (Efteling)". Roller Coaster DataBase. Retrieved July 28, 2014. 

External links[edit]