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Twisted Colossus Construction Update #20

By on 03/27/2015

Six Flags Magic Mountain was kind enough to invite me and some of my fellow coaster bloggers out to the park again today for another hard hat construction tour of Twisted Colossus. It’s getting so close to being done that everyone is very excited and anxious to ride it. The opening date of the ride, although still not announced by the park, can’t get here soon enough. They said they hope to give us a date in the coming weeks. In the meantime, please enjoy these photos.

The first thing we saw was the new purple train that recently arrived onsite. They ripped off some shrink wrap so that we could take a closer look at a couple of the cars:

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This is the lead car. The train is exactly like the orange train we saw in the last tour, but the colors are reversed. The blue and green trains haven’t arrived yet:

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I would expect the shipment to come with some spare parts, but I would’ve thought they’d be in new (and bigger) boxes. I certainly hope these aren’t the “spare parts” that were left over after they built the train and didn’t know where they went:

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After drooling all over the new train, we started our trek over to the coaster. From the outside of the second (and fourth) turnaround, we could see some of the supports being set for the upcoming track placement:

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The blue track through this corner will be an “Outward Banked Floater,” meaning that the train will be banked to the right as the track turns to the left. You can already see a couple of the track supports in place for that turn:

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There were piles of steel track everywhere that we were having to walk around. I wouldn’t be surprised if all the track is now on site and ready to be placed:

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Both lift hill motors, each one a whopping 200HP, were installed and in the process of being connected. The old motors were only about 150HP, but the bigger motors were needed because the new trains are roughly 500 lbs. heavier than the Morgan trains they are replacing:

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This contraption is used to measure the “envelope clearance.” That’s the safe distance all the way around the train to ensure that nobody’s arms or any other bodily parts will hit any part of the structure. A normal sized human being cannot reach out to the outer wire that you see, from either side of the train. They will slowly roll this around the track and make sure that it doesn’t hit anything:

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A normal coaster will only need one such rig. As a dueling coaster, they will need to build a second one of these and roll them around the track together to ensure they not only miss the structure, but also each other. Although it would be neat if you really could “High Five” someone in another train during the ride, that would be a major safety concern. You only want it to look like you can.

This next photo shows were a lot of the track work in currently taking place. Although it looks like a jumbled mess, you can see both tracks starting the second drop in the background:

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As I move the side a little bit, and get more of a dead-on view, you can see the green track coming this way. And yes, it is upside-down:

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This section of the coaster on the parking lot side is where they are currently working. It contains two of the most anticipated (and complicated) elements: the Top Gun Stall and the Zero-G Roll. This is where they are moving from Phase 2 of the build to Phase 3, the final stage:

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If you look closely in the previous photo, you will see a section of old track. This needed to remain to preserve structural integrity. It will forever remain as a small bit of trivia and history of the original Colossus roller coaster:

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Steel, steel, everywhere:

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We were doing the tour right in the middle of the work day, so there were workers everywhere, doing everything. We had to be careful around all of the active cranes, bucket lifts, forklifts, and more. These guys were hooking up some steel to the crane to fly it up somewhere above:

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And speaking of above, the paint crew was high overhead giving the structure a fresh coat of white paint. They steam cleaned everything first to remove any old grime and loose paint. They are painting everything except the track and galvanized steel supports underneath it. The decision was made not to paint that steel because it gives more of a steampunk vibe having a mix of wood and steel:

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This is what everyone has been talking about this week. The green track has rolled upside down, directly over the top of the blue track, for what is called a Top Gun Stall:

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At the start of the second drop, the blue track is on the outside and the green track is on the inside. The green track passes over the blue track and dips below grade to pickup some additional speed:

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This is what you will see when you reach the bottom of the second drop on the blue track, just before the small airtime hill:

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The green track shoots up out of the dip and starts into the roll:

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The roll positions the green track directly over the top of the blue track, albeit upside-down. Any keys or cellphones dropped out of the pocket of a green track passenger will likely end up being caught by someone in the blue train:

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It almost looked like they were placing a giant cross right before the Top Gun Stall. I’m sure a lot of people will probably say a little prayer right before that inversion:

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If you thought Goliath towered over Colossus before, it’s even more prominent now that parts of Twisted Colossus, like this turn, are even shorter than they were. This is the small dip just before the High 5, as seen from behind the coaster:

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This is the High 5 as seen from the direction you will be entering it. I still have a hard time believing a coaster train can navigate the twist of that green track:

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This is the dip right after the High 5, as seen from inside the structure:

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There were even more painters working on the backside of the coaster. You can see bare wood above them where the steam cleaning removed a lot of the old paint:

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There were even guys shoring up the old wood with new steel bracing:

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There are still parts of the structure that look like spaghetti as you walk through it:

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Here you can really see the difference in the 2nd drop between the two tracks:

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Moving over to the station, the entrance sign has been removed:

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The master ride control panel has been installed and was being wired up:

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Several of the ride control systems have also been installed in the station track:

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The track leading back to the station has received some new brakes:

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There is a new fence protecting the track leaving the station:

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The stanchions for the queue switchbacks were ready to be installed:

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The exit ramp from the station, which leads over the track, is being rebuilt:

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The railing for the exit ramp, which you can see in the previous picture, is all stacked up out front and ready to be installed:

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I have many photos I also took of the work being done in the new Screampunk District. However, this post was getting somewhat long, so I’ll put those up later this weekend in a separate post.

I’d like to thank Sue, Connie, Bruce, Tim, and everyone else at Six Flags Magic Mountain that made today’s tour possible. It’s always a pleasure to see everything that goes on behind the scenes to bring us such amazing rides and attractions.

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20 Comments

  1. Adrian

    03/27/2015 at 11:31 pm

    AWESOME UPDATE YOU ARE THE BEST!

  2. steve austin

    03/28/2015 at 2:34 am

    Always the best update there is…..thanks Kurt. I was a little disappointed that they decided not to paint the grey steel supports..but oh well at least the main superstructure will have a nice shiny white coat… I love the colors of the track to bad the center of the rails wont stay green/blue after the wheels of the trains go over it consistantly…but i dont think there is anything that can be done about that.

    • tina

      03/31/2015 at 4:43 pm

      But at least Scream! will have nice blue rails when it opens cause it already went through testing back in 2003 🙂

  3. RollerCoasterLover

    03/28/2015 at 8:31 am

    By next week, the whole top gun stall will be done! oh yeah, and in case you didn’t know, twisted colossus will be getting an emblem, just like WC an IR. Also, the park will release the opening date in about three weeks.

    • Dane

      03/28/2015 at 5:02 pm

      they might still paint the rails there’s still plenty of time.

  4. RollerCoasterLover

    03/28/2015 at 12:07 pm

    I thought the trains were red, blue, orange, and purple. I didn’t know there was a green train.

  5. Eric

    03/28/2015 at 4:44 pm

    It would be nice if they could mount one of the old trains on that track section left for structural integrity. Of course, they won’t because it would rot out in the sun and elements.

    Thanks for these updates. It’s nice to get a glimpse of things from the other side.

    • Francisco O

      04/02/2015 at 5:36 pm

      I was thinking they should do that exact thing.

  6. Justin

    03/30/2015 at 11:47 am

    Great update Kurt! The photos are fantastic.

    Also wanted to note that I’ve been linking your updates for some time now to the /r/rollercoasters community on Reddit to give you some more exposure. Hope you don’t mind!

    Here is the link:
    http://www.reddit.com/r/rollercoasters/comments/30tmpa/twisted_colossus_construction_update_20/

    • The Coaster Guy

      03/30/2015 at 12:11 pm

      Not at all. Thank you!

      • Justin

        03/30/2015 at 3:48 pm

        My pleasure – those that do comment on the posts are usually positive and have good things to say (many mistake me as you (the blog owner) but I try to set them straight)

  7. Exgroj

    03/30/2015 at 9:56 pm

    Is there any chance that Twisted Colossus will go backwards for Fright Fest?

  8. tina

    03/31/2015 at 4:40 pm

    Now it makes more sense that the green double down is so twisted. That twisted motion will give the train the momentum to go up and over that top gun stall.

  9. Charles

    04/01/2015 at 9:26 pm

    It looks like they will be able stop the train before the station this time, we ran through the brake run and around the station and ended up stopping at the lift hill, and walking out on one of the first runs in 1978. Opening day Saturday June 27, 2015 ??? Just in time for 4 of July Weekend ??? Thank you for the pictures I cannot get out to MM, this update is like being there. Charles

  10. Ryan

    04/10/2015 at 5:18 pm

    Top gun roll is done and it looks insane

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