Monday, March 19, 2012

Scott and Carol Present - X-Flight At Six Flags Great America

Nicely framed by Raging Bull in the distance under a beautiful blue sky, we could have done this tour in shorts this year! X-Flight features many speed runs low to the ground. It is slightly reminiscent of Batman: the ride in how it coils around itself and has lots of tight changes in direction.

We didn't count how many time the track crosses over itself, but there are a lot of them. All of the drops go to ground level which should accentuate the sensation of speed, especially for the outside riders. The two barrel rolls will contrast nicely with the lazy zero-g roll.

The pull out from the inverted first drop is in the foreground with the last dip before the brakes at the ready station.

Added since the animation was released, water cannons will add some excitement as X-Flight riders fly by.

The riders on the inside of this turn will be angled very close to the ground.

The ready stop is right about where the edge of the antiques car track ran out by the railroad track. Some of the train track has been removed for construction access.

Here is the frame for the station and you can see the conduits are already in place for the myriad of cables required to the various controllers. The station will be covered with corrugated metal for a hard industrial look. It is located on the far side of the roller coaster away from the midway.

The lift hill is very wide since it has to cover the width of the train. It raises the trains over 120 feet in the air before the inverted twelve story drop that accelerates the train to 55 mph.

The restraints appear to be quite roomy, with the over the shoulder part serving mainly as an attachment point for the hip bar, which does the actual restraining of the rider.

The trains width means there will lots of intense fly-bys for the guests seated in the outside rows, and the inside seats are much farther out from the center rail compared to most past Bolliger & Mabillard creations. At one time the Public Relations staff wanted to cart around a car for various publicity events but that idea was scrapped due to the size and weight of the cars.

You can see the inverted drop behind this reversing inversion. This is the north end of the very tight layout.

The zero-g roll stretches high above the keyhole section. Soon the landscaping crews will get started and the fencing around the dangerous areas will be installed. Guests will enter and exit under the ride.

Here is a view of the keyhole section from the east with a few of the nearly ground level sections of the track.

A slightly tighter shot, to show you just how close the riders will be to the supports as they zoom by while rotating around the track. And by the way, there also will be a building there where they will pivot 90 degrees to fit through the keyhole.

From this vantage point east of the keyhole you can see the lift hill, zero-g roll, entrance and exit to an over-banked turn, and the keyhole. One can only wonder what the view will be from the Sky Trek Tower when X-Fight is in operation.

Here is a nice artsy shot from the south, or American Eagle end of X-Flight. The wooden coaster in the background is Viper. Many thanks to Brandon, who kindly missed some Second Round NCAA action, to make this tour possible. Can't wait to experience this ride.

Thanks again to everyone at Six Flags Great America for the opportunity. A special shout out to Brandon for arranging the excellent weather. X-Flight train photos courtesy of Six Flags Great America.