Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit
|Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit|
|Universal Studios Florida|
|Park section||Production Central|
|Soft opening date||August 16, 2009|
|Opening date||August 19, 2009|
|Model||X-Car / Music|
|Lift/launch system||Vertical Lift|
|Height||167 ft (51 m)|
|Length||3,800 ft (1,200 m)|
|Speed||65 mph (105 km/h)|
|Capacity||1850 riders per hour|
|Height restriction||130–201 cm (4 ft 3 in–6 ft 7 in)|
|Trains||7 trains with 2 cars. Riders are arranged 2 across in 3 rows for a total of 12 riders per train.|
Universal Express available
Single rider line available
|Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit at RCDB|
Pictures of Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit at RCDB
Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit is a steel roller coaster at Universal Studios Florida in Orlando, Florida. With a height of 167 feet (51 m), a length of 3,800 feet (1,200 m), and a top speed of 65 miles per hour (105 km/h), it is the largest X-Coaster ever built by German manufacturer Maurer Söhne. Announced on March 19, 2008, the coaster officially debuted on August 19, 2009, despite original plans to open several months earlier in the spring. Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit features on-ride music LED lighting, and on-ride photos and videos captured from cameras mounted in each passenger row.
During the second week of January 2008, Universal Parks & Resorts filed a Notice of Commencement with Orange County, Florida indicating that they were to construct a ride system that they had code-named "Project Rumble." The notice also stated that the contractor was "Maurer Rides GmbH," located in Munich, Germany.
After months of rumors, the new attraction was announced by Universal Studios Officials on March 19, 2008. Unlike usual announcements, officials did not reveal the specifications of the entire roller coaster. In the original press release, it stated that the roller coaster's vertical lift hill would be 167 feet (51 m) tall, and that the trains would reach a maximum speed of 65 miles per hour (105 km/h). The press release also mentioned that each train would be equipped with a multi-media package, LED lights, built-in video recorders, and the option for riders to choose a song from a list to be played during the course of the ride. The ride would also include six near miss encounters. At the time, the new roller coaster was scheduled to open in Spring 2009. Also, in the months after the announcement, Universal Studios surveyed guests on what songs they think should be included in the roller coaster. Some of the artists that guests could choose from were: The Black Eyed Peas, Bee Gees, The Beach Boys, and Johnny Cash.
Construction began in May 2008 with preliminary land clearing, which caused the removal of some of Twister...Ride it Out’s outdoor extended queue. The first track pieces were installed during the week of December 7, 2008. In February 2009, Universal launched a website for the attraction, which included a construction blog and photographs chronicling progress of the attraction's construction. The track layout was completed at the end of April 2009 with the crowning of the lift hill.
In April 2009, Universal confirmed that the roller coaster would not open as originally planned and said it would open in the summer. Though Universal has never mentioned what the exact problem with the roller coaster was, it is believed by newspapers that issues with the anti-rollback devices on the lift hill that were not working correctly caused the delay.
After the issues with the ride were resolved, Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit began public previews in mid-August 2009. On August 19, 2009, Universal Studios Florida officially opened the attraction.
Guests first enter into one of three queues; either the main queue, the express queue, or the single rider queue. Riders must pass through a metal detector in order to board, and may not board with any loose items on their person or in pockets. Lockers are provided for storage of these items. In each of the queue lines, there are several large screen displays that explain how to pick a song to play during the ride and important safety instructions. In the video, characters called "Video DJ's" are used as demonstrators to provide a visual explanation.
The station for the roller coaster is quite different from traditional stations. As the train enters, it slows down but does not stop. There is a moving sidewalk on both sides of the station moving at the same speed as the train so riders can load and unload. Riders have about 30 seconds to take their seat, lower the lap-bar, and make their song choice. After the restraints are checked, the train immediately begins to climb the 167-foot (51 m) vertical chain lift and the song that the rider picked begins to play while the on-ride video recorder begins recording. When the train reaches the top of the lift, it drops back to the ground, reaching a maximum speed of 65 miles per hour (105 km/h). Following the drop, the train goes through a non-inverting loop (meaning that the train doesn't go through an inversion), which is nicknamed "The Double Take". Then the train makes an upward right turn into one of the several mid-course brakes. It then drops back down, going through a hole in a wall before entering a left upward helix. This section of the coaster is nicknamed "The Treble Clef". Next the train enters a quick element nicknamed "The Jump Cut", which is similar to a non-inverting corkscrew. The train then drops back down before climbing back up into the second mid-course brakes. Following a small drop to the left, it travels straight before making a right turn, followed by a left and then another right leading into the third set of mid-course brakes. Another drop is followed by the brakes leading into an s-bend/turn. The train then travels into an inclined loop before entering the fourth set of brakes after going back up. Finally, the train drops back down and goes over a small hill before entering the final brake run, where the train enters the station and the rider's song ends.
The steel track of Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit is 3,800 feet (1,200 m) long in length, and the height of the lift is approximately 167 feet (51 m). Because the lift hill is vertical, a special evacuation system is used in the event that a train stalls on the lift. Also, the track is filled with sand and gravel to reduce the noise when a train is on the track. Throughout the layout of the roller coaster, there are 5 sets of brakes to control the speed of the trains.
The roller coaster operates with seven stadium-style seating X-Car trains. Each train has two cars that can hold six riders each for a total of twelve riders per train. On the headrest of each seat there are two speakers that play music during the ride. The speakers have been designed so that only the rider's selected music track will be audible. On the restraint is a small touch screen where riders can choose which song they want to listen to during the ride. Additionally, the trains are equipped with multi-colored lights that can be seen during the night.
The initial announcement just said that there would be 5 categories of songs. The full tracklist was not released until July 6, 2009, with Universal Studios Florida unveiling thirty songs (6 in each category) that can be played during the ride.
A touchscreen is built into the restraint on each seat. Once riders board the train and lower the restraint, they may use this screen to select one of the five music categories, then one of the six songs in the chosen category. If the rider fails to make a selection within 30 seconds, a song will be chosen at random. The chosen song begins as the train climbs the vertical lift hill. Depending on the song, it may begin partway into the song, or end early, since the total ride time is 1 minute and 39 seconds.
Hidden song selections
In addition to these 30 songs, Universal Studios Florida also provided additional "hidden" songs that are available to riders, but are not included in the queue video.
In order to access these songs, the rider must press and hold the ride logo on the touch screen for 10 seconds after lowering the restraint. The list of song categories will then be replaced by a 10-digit keypad, on which the rider can enter a three-digit code for the desired song.
|Mitch Hawker's Best Roller Coaster Poll: Best steel-Tracked Roller Coaster|
- Hollywood Dream: The Ride - a Bolliger & Mabillard roller coaster which uses similar technology for music.
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