William Cobb

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This article is about the engineer. For other persons by this name, see William Cobb (disambiguation)

William L. "Bill" Cobb (1917 – December 17, 1990), was an American designer and engineer of roller coasters, as the founder and head of William Cobb & Associates. He is particularly noted for his work on designing and relocating several major wooden roller coasters in the 1970s and 1980s. A number of these coasters were world-record holders at the time of their opening.

On the subject of roller coaster design, Cobb has been quoted as saying "You have to be a little bit mean. Sometimes you have to be a little bit sneaky. You get them going on a nice straight track and they think 'This looks smooth,' and then you dip it down a little to give them a good jolt. Or you have it so that when they go over a hill it looks like they're going to get their heads chopped off at the bottom" .[1]

Roller coasters by Cobb[edit]

The following roller coasters were either designed or engineered (in whole or part) by William Cobb:

Name Park Year Built Notes
Anaconda Walibi Lorraine 1989
Arkansas Twister Magic Springs and Crystal Falls 1978 Built as the Florida Hurricane for Circus World (later Boardwalk and Baseball) in Florida, relocated to Arkansas in 1992. Named to "Top Ten Coasters in America" its first year of operation. It is the largest wooden coaster to be relocated in its original configuration.
Cyclone Six Flags New England 1983 Currently being rebuild by Rocky Mountain Construction as Wicked Cyclone. Expected to open Summer 2015.
Judge Roy Scream Six Flags Over Texas 1980
Le Monstre La Ronde 1985–1986 Was and still is today the world's tallest two-track wooden roller coaster.
Rolling Thunder Six Flags Great Adventure 1979
Screamin' Eagle Six Flags St. Louis 1976 Was the world's tallest, fastest and longest duration roller coaster when it opened.
Sierra Tonante Mirabilandia (Italy) 1992 Was Europe's tallest, fastest and longest duration roller coaster when it opened.
Texas Cyclone Six Flags AstroWorld 1976 AstroWorld hired Cobb to design and build after an attempt to buy and relocate the Coney Island Cyclone, in danger of being torn down at the time, proved too expensive. The Texas Cyclone is a mirror image of the original Coney Island Cyclone. The Texas Cyclone itself was demolished with the closing of AstroWorld in 2005.
Tornado Adventureland (Iowa) 1978 Once listed among the top ten wooden roller coasters in the world[2]
Tree Topper Upper Clements Park 1989 The last roller coaster designed by William Cobb

Quotes[edit]

"If you make it too smooth, it'll be like sitting in your living room."

— William Cobb[3]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Adam Sandy (2006). "Roller Coaster History, 1980's - 1990's". Retrieved 2006-06-09. 
  2. ^ http://www.adventurelandpark.com/about/
  3. ^ Sandy, Adam (2006). "Roller Coaster History - Introduction". Retrieved 2008-06-22. 

Other references[edit]