Vortex (Kings Island)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Vortex
Vortex Kings Island.jpg
Kings Island
Park section Coney Mall
Coordinates 39°20′27″N 84°15′51″W / 39.340724°N 84.264219°W / 39.340724; -84.264219Coordinates: 39°20′27″N 84°15′51″W / 39.340724°N 84.264219°W / 39.340724; -84.264219
Status Operating
Opening date April 11, 1987
Cost $4,000,000 USD
General statistics
Type Steel
Manufacturer Arrow Dynamics
Model Custom Looping Coaster
Track layout Terrain
Lift/launch system Chain lift hill
Height 148 ft (45 m)
Drop 138 ft (42 m)
Length 3,800 ft (1,200 m)
Speed 55 mph (89 km/h)
Inversions 6 (Loop, Loop, Double Corkscrew, Batwing)
Duration 2:30
Max vertical angle 55°
Capacity 1,600 riders per hour
G-force 3.9
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.
Fast Lane available
Must transfer from wheelchair
Vortex at RCDB
Pictures of Vortex at RCDB

Vortex is a steel roller coaster at Kings Island located in Mason, Ohio. Designed and built by Arrow Dynamics at a cost of $4 million, the ride officially opened to the public on April 11, 1987. Vortex debuted as the tallest, full-circuit roller coaster with the highest drop in the world. It was also the first to feature six inversions.

Vortex occupies the same location in the park once held by The Bat, the world's first suspended roller coaster. Attendance at the park exceeded 3 million in 1987 for the first time in the park's history. With more than 38 million rides given, the roller coaster is one of the most popular attractions at Kings Island to date.

History[edit]

For the design and construction of Vortex, Kings Island turned to Arrow Dynamics, an industry-leading manufacturer at the time. Construction began in the winter of 1986 on the former location of The Bat, the world's first suspended roller coaster that was removed after the 1984 season. Kings Island invested over $4 million on the ride that required 750 tons of steel to construct.[1] The line queue and train station from The Bat were reused for the Vortex.[2][3] The ride opened to the public on April 11, 1987, and helped the park exceed 3 million visitors for the first time in its history.[1][4] At its inauguration, Vortex briefly set a few records for full-circuit roller coasters. It was the tallest, featured the highest drop, and had the most inversions with six. All were surpassed the following year with the debut of Shockwave at Six Flags Great America.[4][5]

Vortex has been repainted at least twice: during the 2001 season[6] and again in April 2009 before opening day.[7] The ride celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2012, and since its debut, Vortex has given more than 38 million rides – sixth-most in Kings Island's history.[8]

Ride experience[edit]

Aerial view of Vortex

As the train leaves the station, it dips slightly taking a hard right into the beginning of the lift hill. The train ascends slowly giving riders a view of the park including The Beast to the left, Diamondback straight ahead, and the Eiffel Tower to the right. Once reaching the top, the train dips slightly, immediately making a right hand turn into a 138 ft, 55-degree nosedive down the first drop. The train then ascends into a left-banking turn as the track flattens out. After turning roughly 180 degrees, the track straightens briefly before descending into a sharp left turn that takes riders through two consecutive loops. Upon exiting the second loop, the train ascends to a level portion of the track that makes a sudden right turn into a set of midcourse brakes that slow the train almost to a complete stop. Next, the train drops off the midcourse brakes into the two corkscrews. After the corkscrews, the train goes through a batwing inversion, a heart-shaped element containing both a dive loop and an immelmann loop, that inverts riders two additional times. An on-ride camera is featured in between both inversions. The train then enters its final maneuver – a 450-degree ascending clockwise helix – that generates positive g forces before slamming into the final brake run stopping the train abruptly. A final right-hand turn is made to re-enter the station.

Ride elements[edit]

Incidents[edit]

On Saturday, July 2, 2011, damage to Vortex's chain lift was detected by a computer as a train was pulling out of the station. The ride was stopped and all passengers were able to safely exit. The ride remained closed for several weeks while a replacement part was on order.[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Richardson, Rachel (April 15, 2012). "http://cincinnati.metromix.com/events/article/kings-island-thrill-ride/3047733/content". Metromix. Retrieved January 17, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Random Facts". KingsIslandCentral.com. Retrieved 2 May 2012. 
  3. ^ "KIExtreme.com". @2003-2012 KIExtreme. Retrieved 13 April 2012. 
  4. ^ "Vortex at visitkingsisland.com". Cedar Fair Parks. Retrieved 2 May 2012. 
  5. ^ "Coasterbuzz.com". Retrieved 2 May 2012. 
  6. ^ "Vortex Gets a New Paint Job". KICentral.com. 2 April 2009. Retrieved 11 May 2012. 
  7. ^ "Coaster.net". COASTER.net.com. Retrieved 13 April 2012. 
  8. ^ Goldsmith, Ethan (July 13, 2011). "Kings Island Closes Vortex to replace part". Fox 19. Retrieved 13 April 2012. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Viper
First Roller Coaster With 6 Inversions
April 1987–June 1988
Succeeded by
Shockwave