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E-Stops

21 posts in this topic

Was at Dreamworld the other day and rode the Claw, and I got to thinking - when the arm is at it's 120 degree angle (or how ever high it is that it goes) - if someone hit the E-Stop, how quickly could it stop? Are the brakes on it strong enough to overpower the momentum from gravity?

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I think the braking system is magnetic is it not? if so, in theory it could go from full swing to dead stop at ground level relatively quickly. (half a swing?) Most swinging rides generally can stop in one swing or less - i do recall years ago at wonderland on bounty's hearing an e-stop from across the lake (bounty's is a tire drive) and the squealing screeching of the tires was extremely loud... obviously that doesn't apply to the claw, but an e-stop is exactly that - an Emergency... so you would expect it to stop pretty quickly anyhow. I've checked huss' website - they don't list those kinds of specs.... and neither do any of the other usually informative enthusiast websites - not even wiki covers it in any great detail.... so i'm open to hearing anyone "in the know"... (bella i'm looking at you!)

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HUSS probably wouldn't have info on Claw, it's an Intamin ride afterall. Oddly enough on a HUSS Piratw ship e-stop cuts off power to the motor, leaving the ship to swing freely, wouldn't surprise me if Claw worked in a similar way. Personally, I'd assume normal stop would be the quickest way to stop the ride

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I know the Gyroswing was intamin, but the majority of info out there was for the giant frisbee, and assumed would work in a similar fashion. The HUSS pirateship is over 30 year old technology however - alternative systems and safeguards would have been developed since then, i would hope...

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Ive never seen it used, but my understanding of the Claw E-stop is that it works pretty rapidly, much so in the fashion that Alex described above. Using the E-stop locks everything out though (floors wont rise and harnesses wont release on stop etc. as the ride hasnt referenced back to its Point of Origin). Autostop is the other stop, which is a much better option for those general stops (Loose items on ride etc.) Just finishes the cycle early and brings the ride to a normal stop.

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The massive Disc Brake on the Claw can be seen pretty easily. It's the huge shiny silver circle you can see that rotates as the arm swings, and the large calipers that close on it can be seen also. I'm guessing that an E-STOP would close those Brakes damn quickly and that ride would stop very fast. You'd then have all the riders stranded whilst waiting for maintenance staff to come and bring the ride down. One of the many many reasons you only EVER hit an E-STOP in the case that serious injury is immanent.

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The claw has brake calipers and a disc and if the e stop is pushed it shuts the motors down and applies the brakes which lets the gondola swing to the ground at a slower speed and will however swing past its home position and then back close to home position. The operator then must wait for engineering to reset the ride home the gondola and raise the floors.

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While we're talking about the Claw, I thought I might ask something that I have always wondered about....How the motors are actually set up. In this pic here you can see a few motors mounted on the left side of the top of the pendulum: http://www.parkz.com.au/photo/AU/Gold_Coas...nstruction.html Are these geared directly to the top of the pendulum, or does it work a bit like a pirate ship, with the motors each having a friction tyre, with this then making contact with a drum at the top of the pendulum?

Edited by Gazza

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Looks to me as though they are connected through a gear diretly to the shaft connecting to the pendulu which is supported by the large bearing. The disc break can be seen on the right hand side. They look like electric variable frequency drives to me rather than hydraulic so each would rotate in both directions to move the arm. All just observational speculation though.

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Hey guys, i have manage to get a hands on the Adventureland Ride ops manual :D it says about E-Stop The E-STOP is for emergencies only. Know what the E-Stop on your ride does – You will be fully trained on any ride you are expected to operate or attend. a. On some rides the E-STOP will work just like the stop button and stop the ride as normal. b. On other rides, such as the Balloon Tower, the E-STOP will shut off all power to the ride… in some situations making it worse to hit the E-STOP than the regular stop button. c. Before pressing an E-STOP make sure you know what it does.

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^ If that is a real manual excerpt (I'm a dubious) then I think the park has a problem. Before pressing an E-STOP make sure you know what it does? WTF? Surely knowing what an E-STOP does is a prerequisite operating a ride (which is why I'd never make a good Claw op...).

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^ If that is a real manual excerpt (I'm a dubious) then I think the park has a problem. Before pressing an E-STOP make sure you know what it does? WTF? Surely knowing what an E-STOP does is a prerequisite operating a ride (which is why I'd never make a good Claw op...).
NO Silly billy, men don't need manuals, who cars what the button does, it's big, red and shiny, therefore it has to do something cool

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My understanding is that any e-stop (including in manufacturing processes) is basically a cut to power systems, if the system/ride is designed so that the brakes apply when the power is cut then that would be the reaction, however if the brakes are operated by applying power then using the e-stop would result in a "gravity" stop and swing for a long time. This is what the manual would be referring to as "know what an e-stop does on your ride". This doesn't really help work out what the claw would do because it depends on design, but from what I've seen on many roller coasters and rides is that when they shut down in an emergency brakes normally apply with out power. An E-Stop is basically when something is mechanically wrong with the ride (ie: someone about to put their hand into the motor or similar) so an e-stop shuts down the electrical and mechanical systems so there is no applied force, however unless the device is "fail safe" momentum and gravity will continue moving some parts. A ride stop however implies that the ride is functioning correctly but there is some reason to stop it quickly and before the end of cycle, as a result a ride stop often will stop quicker that a E-stop.

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Anyways back onto the topic at hand, What DEAP is saying is valid and makes perfect sense. Having worked in the amusement industry it is VERY important to know when to push the Emergency Stop button or just the normal ride stop button. The ride I have worked on is a Break Dance type ride and depending on the circumstances will determine how we react. For example if we hear a noise, we don't immediately stop the ride we just slow it down in a way that it looks like it's part of the ride cycle while one of the other workers checks it while the ride is still moving at a slower speed. If we see an item become dislodged from the carriage (phone etc) we just slow the ride to a stop to retrieve the item as there is no need for an Emergency stop as that requires a decent amount to get the ride started again. However if the object appears to have come from the ride (Has never happened but an example used could be a light fixture) then the ride will be E-Stopped. It all depends on the circumstances and on the person to know when to E-stop the ride. The E-stop is always the last option and if the ride can be manually slowed down to a stop it is what we will do. I hope that all makes some sense to you :)

Edited by joz

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In manufacturing its a bit different actually, an estop will turn the machine off but wont cut power to it. It then wont be able to turn back on until the estop button is unlatched and returns to the out position. On hydraulic machines is has to finish the cycle because with the machine off you cant keep the cylinders pressurized to halt it. Also the fact the off button is usually near the power box of the machine while the estop is near the control panel for emergency sakes, even though if you have an accident its going to be over before you can even think about hitting the stop button.

Edited by Scott.

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Yeah i know i just pointed that out because deap brought it up, but knowing what the estop does on our machines before pressing it is important too, you wouldnt believe the amount of idiots who use it as an off switch then the next person comes and thinks its broken because the estop is still on and they dont know.

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I guess I'm the one who has the experience to answer this question as I'm pretty sure I'm going to be the only person on here that has actually operated The Claw (well it's equivalent at Canada’s Wonderland). I never had to e-stop it (came close once) but I did see it get e-stopped, it was during the first half of the cycle, with the pendulum rising to nearly full height, it took the down swing and half of the return swing to come to a complete stop. Maintenance was then required to come and release the lockout and raise the floor. Each ride stops differently after an e-stop and it also depends on when it is hit. For example Space Probe would stop halfway up the tower if you hit it then but after the release it was pointless hitting it. Demon was pretty much the same, once the train had passed through the station, if you hit the estop, it wouldn’t stop until hit got to the lift chain. During my nearly 5 years of ride operation I hit the e-stop numerous times, the scariest was when the cable snapped on The Demon, major brown trouser time there! Sorry to bring up Wonderland again, but its where my experience is. Bussy

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Bussy, if e-stopped while the train is in the boomerang, would the brake line at the bottom of lift 2 stop it before it climbed the hill itself?
It depended how full the train was. If it was empty then yes. If it was full of heavy adults, sometimes not. But it wouldn't get far past them and up the hill before it would come back and rest in the brakes.

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