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Learning From Steel Cart Crash

Ohhhh Noooo! Everything was going along so well. The track was going up fast and beautiful, Jeff, Abraham, and I were in high spirits as we ran the new cart down the new track during our first test. Then, it happened! It was time for us to switch from being super pleased with ourselves into a slightly less comfortable, but ultimately more productive mode: Namely, Learning From Roller Coaster Cart Crash mode!

We ran the new cart down the track three times. The first and second times, things seemed to go well. The third time, as they say, was the charm. But only if you define the word “charm” as metal-on-metal-crash-with-cart-filp-and-disappointment. Yep. Charming, alright!

Cart Test Crash - Ouch!This was the first time Abraham and Jeff had seen me destroy a roller coaster cart. Truth be told, I’ve done it a hundred times. It’s important to have more than one roller coaster cart crash when you’re designing and building roller coaster carts. That’s how we learn. For me, the process goes like this. Think, Dream, Draw, Build, Think, Dream, Draw, Rebuild, Test, Break, Fix, Rebuild, Rethink, Dream, Redraw, Test, Destroy, Rebuild, and so on. There’s no shame in failure….

Especially if you’ve got POV Video of your most spectacular failures :)

From our pile of slightly twisted metal will come a new design, a rebuilt cart, and a far more stable wheel assembly. All told, it was a great couple of days!

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Backyard PVC Roller Coaster – Finished Track

I woke up early Saturday morning and worked as fast as I possibly could to build the last part of the track! Now, the Backyard PVC Roller Coaster has a finished track. Wohoo! Next stop, mechanical lift segment! That’ll be an adventure, for sure.

You know, the whole thing got me thinking it might be fun to build another kind of cart for this coaster. I’m thinking steel tubing instead of wood.  It’d be lighter, which means the payload (passenger) could be heavier… Hmmm.
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Roller Coaster Disaster Update – Look What Happened!

Well, we didn’t name this coaster Caution Zone for nothing! It got pretty windy last night, and a huge oak tree branch fell from about 30 feet up and landed on the track! Check out the video to see what happened! Okay.. maybe it wasn’t a full-blast roller coaster disaster. But, it definitely got my heart racing for a minute or two. I guess that’s what roller coasters are all about, right?

Also, please be sure to Like & Share. CoasterDad appreciates your support!

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