Sea World's Storm Coaster is slowly starting to shape up. In this edition of the Parkz Update we take a look at the construction site that is starting to reveal a ride layout, and the car park that is filled with all sorts of twisted steel.
That black thing crawling along can only mean one thing...
... Sea Viper is back up and running.
Some ongoing work is taking place on the Monorail.
Work is taking place on the panels that protect fingers, limbs and other appendages from the monorail trains in lower sections of track.
The Fish Detectives' stadium shade is down for repairs.
Land reclamation continues, making room for next year's attraction.
And the Endeavour continues to sit off in one corner of the lake.
With annual passes on sale for the upcoming financial year, there are some promotions running at the parks.
And it's seagull feeding time at Ray Reef...
The chaotic construction site of Storm Coaster is slowly starting to resemble a roller coaster footprint.
The gutted building is being prepared for construction of the ride's main water pool.
The airtime hill finale that Mack water coasters feature will be found here.
The Log Ride's new shortened track takes a very deliberate path through gaps in Storm Coaster's supports.
The twisted drop here will feature A-shaped supports across both sides of the path. The left side supports will be vertical while the right will be angled to meet at the track above.
The extensive coaster section will make good use of the area that was once Bermuda Triangle's load/unload station.
Pumps continue to operate to keep the low construction site dry while earthworks take place.
Significant amounts of concrete are required to contain the vast body of water.
One of the support beams for the building has been reconfigured to make way for the ride course. Afer the final drop and airtime hill the track will head back into the building for the final section before the station.
The building will extend out into this new area.
No shortage of pipes and rebar for the concrete work that lies ahead.
The slow process of laying all the reinforcements for the concrete flume channels is well underway.
The extensive plumbing needs to be put into place before concrete is poured.
Another water pump system sits in the ride building for construction.
This concrete trough houses the switch track for maintenance.
To answer your next question... the blackboard on the wall behind zoomed and enhanced as best we could.
The station area on Mack water coasters uses roller coaster track, so it is raised above the water level to ensure enough clearance for the motors and electronics that sit under the track.
Seen from behind, the flume channel falls into a lower trough where a conveyor into the station will sit.
The two slots in the concrete are where the coaster track will sit. Matching slots can be seen on the far side. The area to the left on this far side is where the ride's transfer track will sit, with maintenance taking place along this left side towards Jet Rescue.
The final turn into the station.
Sky High Skyway will be going down for an extended period while work progresses on Storm Coaster.
The downtime isn't so surprising when you consider how close the cables come to what will be the tallest section of the coaster.
Track in the car park...
Sea World's car park is slowly filling with mountains of steel track and supports.
This conveyor belt joins onto the base of the lift and allows boats to be safely spaced. by stopping and starting as needed.
Conveyor belts are a staple of most water rides. Because the boats can safely back up against each other in the water sections, the blocking systems are generally simpler than normal roller coasters.
The top end of the conveyor belt.
The guides along the left of the conveyor belt gently align the boats, which is crucial to ensure that they connect to the coaster rails smoothly.
Ever wonder what a piece of water coaster track weighs?
3,500kg (7,700lbs) by our estimate.
Mack water coasters feature eight rails where most roller coasters feature just two.
Sea World have gone with the standard blue-and-grey color scheme that most Mack water coasters feature.
A section of the steep, stright final drop.
From the other side. It's easy to picture the final orientation of this track with the angle of the support bracket
That bracket up close. The track attaches to the supports at two parallel points -- more on this in a minute.
Perhaps one of the more unique features of Mack water coasters is the way that most of the twisted coaster track is actually assembled from two halves on the construction site.
This segmented track is likely designed this way to simplify fabrication, shipping or construction.
With the particularly large size of this track, it's not too hard to imagine giant twisted sections of track being particularly difficult to work with at all stages of the process.
Straight sections however come as one piece.
These walkways will hang from the high sections of track to allow maintenance on the block brakes and other mechanical sections.
A common feature on most water rides, these rails act as guides for the boat, often in splashdown sections.
Grills that will lilely cover drains for the pump and filtration system.
Looks like something from Pimp My Shopping Trolley.
One of the block brake sections, featuring traditional compressed-air driven compressiom brakes.
Square base plates attach to the footings.
Larger base plates for larger supports...
Round plates connect the sections of supports.
Some of the taller supports are made up of three column sections.
These angled supports will make be part of the A-shaped supports on the twisted sections of track.
Small supports for the lowest sections of the coaster.
The knobs allow for precise and painless connection of track to the supports during construction.
The 3.5 tonne sections of track can be simply lowered and correctly indexed on the supports for bolting.
Supports for banked sections of track.
Thanks to the wonders of permanent markers, the construction of Storm Coaster has basically become a particularly complicated IKEA project.
Ever wonder what is inside coaster supports? Would you have guessed primer and steel shavings?
There's certainly no shortage of parts arriving on the scene, with plenty more to come.
That's it for another Parkz Update! As you can tell there's going to be all sorts of exciting things happening at Sea World in coming months -- as always stay tuned to Parkz for the latest!