Iron Dragon (roller coaster)

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Iron Dragon
Iron Dragon Cedar Point.JPG
Iron Dragon
Cedar Point
Park section Celebration Plaza
Coordinates 41°28′55.75″N 82°41′6.75″W / 41.4821528°N 82.6852083°W / 41.4821528; -82.6852083Coordinates: 41°28′55.75″N 82°41′6.75″W / 41.4821528°N 82.6852083°W / 41.4821528; -82.6852083
Status Operating
Opening date June 11, 1987
Cost $4,000,000 USD
General statistics
Type Steel – Suspended
Manufacturer Arrow Dynamics
Designer Ron Toomer
Model Suspended Coaster
Track layout Terrain roller coaster
Lift/launch system Two chain lift hills
Height 76 ft (23 m)
Length 2,800 ft (850 m)
Speed 40 mph (64 km/h)
Inversions 0
Duration 2:00
Capacity 2,000 riders per hour
Height restriction 48 in (122 cm)
Trains 3 trains with 7 cars. Riders are arranged 2 across in 2 rows for a total of 28 riders per train.
Iron Dragon at RCDB
Pictures of Iron Dragon at RCDB

Iron Dragon is a steel suspended roller coaster located at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, built in 1987 by Arrow Dynamics. It is located in the Celebration Plaza section of the park. It closes for about 40 minutes every night for Luminosity — Ignite the Night!, a nighttime show that takes place right in front of Iron Dragon.[citation needed]

History[edit]

Iron Dragon with red track and gray supports, used before 2004

Before the Iron Dragon’s 1987 debut, the Western Cruise (later known as Paddlewheel Excursions) boats circumnavigated the waters around this island. The popular boat ride’s station sat on the same part of the midway where Iron Dragon’s station rests today (In fact, observant Iron Dragon riders can still spot the docking cleats welded to the dock while climbing the stairs to the boarding station). The Monster circular ride used to call the land under Iron Dragon’s transfer track home. Monster closed on Labor Day weekend in 1986 so Iron Dragon construction could begin. Planning for Iron Dragon began in 1985, the same year the Frontier Lift cable car ride (similar to the Sky Ride found on Cedar Point’s main midway) opened for its final season.

In the early and mid-1990s, a "remote a boat" game was housed in the water under Iron Dragon's final helix element. This was removed in 1997.

Color scheme[edit]

Iron Dragon's previous color scheme was red track with gray supports, similar paint schemes to that of Ninja's at Six Flags Magic Mountain and Vortex at Canada's Wonderland (both are also Arrow suspended swinging coasters). In 2004, the supports were repainted yellow, giving Iron Dragon the same paint scheme as Top Thrill Dragster.

Ride experience[edit]

Iron Dragon over over near final turns

This type of roller coaster features cars that hang beneath the track by a chassis allowing them to swing side to side. Some parts of the ride are built on artificial lagoons, and the track takes riders into wooded areas and over water. Iron Dragon is one of two roller coasters at Cedar Point to utilize two separate lift hills, the other being Cedar Creek Mine Ride. Both hills are built side by side and head in opposite directions.

After departing the station, the ride turns to the right. After ascending the first lift, which travels partially underneath Mantis' lift hill and first drop, the ride drops down the ride's first drop, and then rises into a wide left turn. This leads into a right turn. At this point, the ride makes a slight turn to the left, followed by a turn to the right. The ride continues right, descending towards the ground. After rising up again, the track goes down a descending, 270-degree helix. This leads into a set of brakes and the second lift hill, which goes in the opposite direction as the first lift. This lift leads into a drop. This drop is not very steep, but twists side to side, first going left, then right, then left. The ride then pulls up, transitioning from a left to a right turn. The next drop curves left slightly, then a right-hand turn. This drop leads into a right-hand helix. This part of the ride has mist sprayers under it, although these do not always run. The helix is somewhat pretzel — shaped. The train enters through the helix, goes around the entering track, but then exits over the entering track, and under the helix itself. Exiting the helix, the ride dips and rises, turning left and then right to align with the station and final brakes.

External links[edit]