UK theme parks from another point of view!

 
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Danny
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 6:30 pm

Just thought I'd confirm that van under the blue tarpaulin was infact the ice cream van. I asked a worker and showed the, the picture and he directed me to where the van is. It's just outside hex next to the dark forest :)
 
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Static Veins
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:12 pm

Heisenberg96 wrote:
Static Veins wrote:
CoventryBee wrote:
Hahaha I'm making the stupid decision of going on the 18th July for someone's birthday. Last week of school term I think. Eeeeeeeek. Are there Fastrack available yet?


Enjoy all those school trips :P

I'm going to be booking a trip in the next week or so. Not sure when for though. I'm assuming it's going to be busy all the way until September now, between school trips and then the summer holidays? Would rather go sooner than later, but would much rather go when it's not packed to breaking point ;)

Oh no, common error my friend.

The very last week of July, around 26th-31st, is one of the best times to go. The last three years I've paid a visit that week. I'm yet to wait in a queue that exceeds 25 minutes. Lets just hope it's the same this year as the common pattern the last three years.

Probably shouldn't be telling people this because it defeats the point...but if you want to ride The Smiler as soon as possible with a small queue, very end of July is a good bet. Of course I can't guarantee it so I take no blame if its packed, but I'm going then again based on how empty it usually is, and how good the weather is. :)

I'm going 23rd of June as well this year...I really don't know why, that'll be ridiculously busy. I'm just too eager to get on The Smiler. Hopefully that time I'll get at least a round or two and then get most my rides in the end of July.


Much obliged. Will look into going that last week of July then I think. I'll probably be going for 2 days over the weekend, as that's just easier for the people I'm going with... Don't suppose you have any inkling as to whether the weekend is usually much worse than the weekdays that week, ey? :P

And a question to anyone been there today (or even yesterday) - are the wheels still screeching badly? In a video taken yesterday, it sounded like it was a bit better, but it was hard to tell.
 
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coliver
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:13 pm

After hearing a few reviews it looks like TS is trying to fight Nemesis off the top spot. Just a quick question about TS links.
How many references are there to MOJ and especially Dr. Kelman around the ride area?
Were there any links to the Sanctuary or the Marmalisation video in the sanctuary?
Thanks
SMILE = 53173 = 5/31/13
IT'S OPEN :)
 
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bealyboy
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:16 pm


Much obliged. Will look into going that last week of July then I think. I'll probably be going for 2 days over the weekend, as that's just easier for the people I'm going with... Don't suppose you have any inkling as to whether the weekend will be much worse than the weekdays that week, ey? :P

And a question to anyone been there today (or even yesterday) - are the wheels still screeching badly? In a video taken yesterday, it sounded like it was a bit better, but it was hard to tell.



Screeching Wheels- Just read some of the reviews and seems that there is a newer car that has newer wheels that haven't been "broken in" yet.
SMILE.ALWAYS
 
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bealyboy
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:18 pm

coliver wrote:
After hearing a few reviews it looks like TS is trying to fight Nemesis off the top spot. Just a quick question about TS links.
How many references are there to MOJ and especially Dr. Kelman around the ride area?
Wree there any links to the Sanctuary or the Marmalisation video in the sanctuary?
Thanks

Apparently not, I havent been on it though but they say no mention on towers street and some coaster review sites
SMILE.ALWAYS
 
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astralAndy
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:24 pm

Right, I'm still perplexed about the "it's really smooth" / "it's pretty rough" thing. Some people are saying one of the good things about the ride is actually how smooth it is, others are outright complaining that it is terribly rough to the point it ruins the whole ride. Some of these opinions, on both sides, are coming from people that have rode multiple times.

Now I thought this was maybe to do with either individual trains or individual sections/cars which are not put together as well as they should be / could be. One reply from someone said that it is pretty smooth (except for the well documented big jolt) if you ride the back but that the front is noticeably rougher. This made me think that it's just where you sit that makes a difference. But then someone else has said 'make sure you try to get the front row because it's much smoother and the back row is terrible!'. Now I've also seen someone post that if you get a seat on the inside of a car rather than the outside it is much smoother.

So, it's starting to look like it's actually that one or more of the trains is of a poorer build AND some of the individual cars on the trains are of a poorer build - but not in any pattern but just some places to sit are going to be better than others. This really points to the fact that there could be some methodical tweaking done to the poorer trains/ sections of trains to get them less rough, rather than The Smiler just being inherently rough in general as a ride.
So this is potentially good news for those that think the ride is overly rough, as long as AT do some changes going by feedback from riders of The Smiler to check and sort out any offending trains and cars to get them in line with ones which are leading people to write reviews saying things like "It was SOOO smooth!!".

Anyone think any different, or have more insight into why people's experience of the the ride (rough vs smooth) is not the same?
 
JamieH93
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:38 pm

why people complain about 'smoothness' is beyond me.
Its a rollercoaster for christ sake,  who cares aslong as your not bashing your head on the restraints all time.
enjoy it and stop picking fault.
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Lexie
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:38 pm

astralAndy wrote:
Now I thought this was maybe to do with either individual trains or individual sections/cars which are not put together as well as they should be / could be. One reply from someone said that it is pretty smooth (except for the well documented big jolt) if you ride the back but that the front is noticeably rougher. This made me think that it's just where you sit that makes a difference. But then someone else has said 'make sure you try to get the front row because it's much smoother and the back row is terrible!'. Now I've also seen someone post that if you get a seat on the inside of a car rather than the outside it is much smoother.....
Anyone think any different, or have more insight into why people's experience of the the ride (rough vs smooth) is not the same?


I found that there is quite a lot of vibration at the back, and little to none at the front. The front row certainly has more of a side to side jolt on the three last inversions though. On the first day I found one train in particular to be agonisingly rough and can only assume that that one is the newer of the four they had running. On the Saturday she was definitely running smoother across all rows than she had been the day before. I don't believe I had a repeat experience on that newer train on the Saturday though. I think the wheels just need to run in a little. Those last three inversions are always going to be rough on your body though, and honestly, I think they are meant to be. I find it quite a challenging ride. That doesn't mean she's not absolutely awesome!
 
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Static Veins
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 7:40 pm

astralAndy wrote:
Right, I'm still perplexed about the "it's really smooth" / "it's pretty rough" thing. Some people are saying one of the good things about the ride is actually how smooth it is, others are outright complaining that it is terribly rough to the point it ruins the whole ride. Some of these opinions, on both sides, are coming from people that have rode multiple times.

Now I thought this was maybe to do with either individual trains or individual sections/cars which are not put together as well as they should be / could be. One reply from someone said that it is pretty smooth (except for the well documented big jolt) if you ride the back but that the front is noticeably rougher. This made me think that it's just where you sit that makes a difference. But then someone else has said 'make sure you try to get the front row because it's much smoother and the back row is terrible!'. Now I've also seen someone post that if you get a seat on the inside of a car rather than the outside it is much smoother.

So, it's starting to look like it's actually that one or more of the trains is of a poorer build AND some of the individual cars on the trains are of a poorer build - but not in any pattern but just some places to sit are going to be better than others. This really points to the fact that there could be some methodical tweaking done to the poorer trains/ sections of trains to get them less rough, rather than The Smiler just being inherently rough in general as a ride.
So this is potentially good news for those that think the ride is overly rough, as long as AT do some changes going by feedback from riders of The Smiler to check and sort out any offending trains and cars to get them in line with ones which are leading people to write reviews saying things like "It was SOOO smooth!!".

Anyone think any different, or have more insight into why people's experience of the the ride (rough vs smooth) is not the same?


I am yet to ride it, so this is just guess-work based on what people have said, but it seems the two middle seats are the smoothest on each row, and the front row is the smoothest of all 4 rows, while the back is the roughest.

Basically:
- Front row, middle seats = smoothest ride
- Back row, outer seats = roughest ride

Some of the trains seem to be rougher than others too.

In others words: complete pot luck!

Of course if someone who's been lucky enough to ride it already wants to correct me, by all means go ahead! :P
 
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Lexie
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:02 pm

Static Veins wrote:
I am yet to ride it, so this is just guess-work based on what people have said, but it seems the two middle seats are the smoothest on each row, and the front row is the smoothest of all 4 rows, while the back is the roughest.
...Some of the trains seem to be rougher than others too.

Of course if someone who's been lucky enough to ride it already wants to correct me, by all means go ahead! :P


Middle seats, second row are the smoothest for me, so far. Less of a jolt into the last three inversions than the front, little to no vibration, unlike the back. Part of me even prefers the second row to the first as visibility is great in all seats, and the front row misses out on the halfway corrected screens, as you stop literally underneath them.
But yes, that one train seems notably rougher. I am hopeful though, as even in 24 hours I could see a change for the better.
 
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astralAndy
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:04 pm

Thanks for your thoughts Lexie and Static
:)

Just something that intrigued me as I've experienced similar on other great coasters before. I've not ridden it myself yet, going for a camping trip in a couple of weeks right next to Alton with a night at the Splash Landings too, so will have plenty of time to find out for myself! I'm personally not too bothered about things being super smooth, but if there's an actual problem that can be fixed I reckon it's always best to sort it out! Hopefully once the trains are all worn in and the ride opening fever has cooled down a bit AT/Merlin can have a look at any problem areas on the trains. Another thing is that if a car is shaking about too much from the start then it's going to rattle itself into an even worse state much quicker than it should.

And Jamie, I think if someone didn't enjoy a ride because it was overly rough it's fair to not be overly happy about it. We can all have our opinions  ;)
 
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:52 pm

I'm not usually a contributor to this forum - but wanted to thank all of those over the past months who have devoted time and effort to providing great updates on The Smiler.

I got down to Alton Towers today - so thought I'd share my thoughts.

Firstly - The Smiler is a great ride - and adds a different experience to the ride line up. It's a lot longer than the other coasters, and I really liked the second lift hill as it broke the ride up and gave another great view over the park and chance to look down again on where you're going. The airtime hill is a highlight - and I reckon as people ride more - the marmaliser will start becoming more apparent as you start to know the layout etc. The staff today were pretty good - considering they were dealing with 2 hour lines all day and having to wear those hideous outfits.

However - does The Smiler knock Nemesis off the top spot (or even get in my Top 10)? Absolutely not. Nemesis is amazing because it's so unique. Whether it's gliding down through the trees to start, the best near misses with the alien, the non-stop under / over ground transitions, or the fact in constantly gathers momentum right until the end. It may not have more loops, or be as long - but it's still my favoutite.

A few other bits amount The Smiler from today - I found the restraints really pinched halfway through the ride - making the second half uncomfortable. They really have missed a trick I think with the effects in the tunnel. And two little niggles - after getting there at about 8.30am - it was about 10.20am before they opened the ride - with a three hour line waiting - you'd hope they'd make an effort to get the thing going on time. The second one is lack of a front row queue - after you've waited so long - it's pretty annoying not to be able to get the seat you want.

For those wanting to know about the single rider line - I gave it a go for my second ride - it took about 50 mins from the entrance to the line.

Anyway - a great, fun ride - and I hope you all enjoying riding it over the coming months (and keeping the Nemesis line quieter for me!)
 
paulturner1974
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:53 pm

anyone know how long the disabled que was waiting
 
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Liam-AltonTowers
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:55 pm

Anyone who's ridden The Smiler, how comfy are the seats - i.e. are the restraints comfy, are they too tight, are the seats comfy etc...
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Credit to Lewis97, thanks for the amazing signature!
 
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Danny
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:57 pm

Liam-AltonTowers wrote:
Anyone who's ridden The Smiler, how comfy are the seats - i.e. are the restraints comfy, are they too tight, are the seats comfy etc...

I found them very comfy however some bigger people did complain it hurt their shoulders :)
 
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Lexie
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:57 pm

paulturner1974 wrote:
anyone know how long the disabled que was waiting


Between 5 and 30 minutes on Saturday. Between 5 and 20 on the Friday.
 
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Lexie
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:59 pm

Liam-AltonTowers wrote:
Anyone who's ridden The Smiler, how comfy are the seats - i.e. are the restraints comfy, are they too tight, are the seats comfy etc...


Seats are comfy. Restraints pinch at thighs but then have a lot of room between your shoulders and the restraint (five inches for me and I'm 5'8") so you can slam down onto your shoulders quite hard. Lots of padding for the head though, and restraints wide enough that you don't get your head banged from side to side.
 
Grumpyg
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 8:59 pm

Liam-AltonTowers wrote:
Anyone who's ridden The Smiler, how comfy are the seats - i.e. are the restraints comfy, are they too tight, are the seats comfy etc...


I'm not a big guy - and found this really pinched down hard on my thighs. Didn't experience any real headbanging though
 
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Phild94
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 9:01 pm

Liam-AltonTowers wrote:
Anyone who's ridden The Smiler, how comfy are the seats - i.e. are the restraints comfy, are they too tight, are the seats comfy etc...


If you're tall watch your shoulders but should be fine :D seats for me were really comfortable I've got to say though try not to pull the restraint down too far otherwise it can trap your legs a little tight.... But the foam padding in the head bump areas is a welcome bonus :D XD

Edit: Once again Ninja'd
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Credit to Lewis97 for the fantastic signature :D
 
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BHXDMT
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Re: The Smiler - General Discussion

Sun Jun 02, 2013 9:14 pm

Static Veins wrote:

I am yet to ride it, so this is just guess-work based on what people have said, but it seems the two middle seats are the smoothest on each row, and the front row is the smoothest of all 4 rows, while the back is the roughest.

Basically:
- Front row, middle seats = smoothest ride
- Back row, outer seats = roughest ride

Some of the trains seem to be rougher than others too.

In others words: complete pot luck!

Of course if someone who's been lucky enough to ride it already wants to correct me, by all means go ahead! :P


For me, in order of comfort of my 4 rides today;

1. Front middle
2. Row 3 middle
3. Back middle
4. Back outer

The back was such a different experience to the front, for the right and wrong reasons! Lol.

Liam-AltonTowers wrote:
Anyone who's ridden The Smiler, how comfy are the seats - i.e. are the restraints comfy, are they too tight, are the seats comfy etc...


I'm quite bulky and I'm 6 ft 3 in tall, but the Smiler restraints were really comfortable. And plenty of room! Or that was my experience anyway, after 4 rides.

And for anyone wanting to know about Single Rider, I tried it 3 times...

1 hour at 11am
5 minutes at 1pm
10 minutes at 1:30pm

So pretty decent if you catch it just right!
Last edited by BHXDMT on Sun Jun 02, 2013 9:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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