Matt C.
  •  Matt C.
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Friday, February 29, 2008 12:06:19 PM
How do Chance Wipeouts do? Are they pretty dependable? Do kids still ride them?
Matt Cook
Matt's Carnival Warehouse / Matt's Web Design
http://www.carnivalwarehouse.com 
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squirrel
Friday, February 29, 2008 1:05:06 PM
Quote:

quote:


Originally posted by Matt C.

How do Chance Wipeouts do? Are they pretty dependable? Do kids still ride them?



Wipeouts are an interesting piece --

I've run one off and on for years, and in a nutshell they can be good earners or bad -- it's all in how you do it. The number one key to a Wipeout is the music you play. A Wipeout HAS to have music if you want to see significant ride grosses from it, and if you don't play the right stuff, you can literally kill the ride gross. Depending on your area, a lot of upbeat dance music and some R&B will make tons of money (but this does best at night, too). During the daytime runs, Pop and Top 40's will keep the crowds happy and being that most of the riders are younger during the day, they don't really care what your playing so much as it's something, but the families will appreciate it and they'll ride as well (which will keep the grosses up). They'll ride it till their blue in the face if the atmosphere you create is good. A Wipeout is NOT a rock-and-roll/hard rock ride though -- it just doesn't earn to it's full potential because the music is 'wrong' for the style of the ride (vs a Flying Bobs or a Gravitron that you can rock out on all day long).

As for the ride's dependability, many factors go into this. #1 is PROPER MAINTENANCE. But this also depends on who had the piece first and did they take care of it. I moved one that only had one other foreman on it and it had been EXTREMELY well maintained before I was put on it. When I took it over, I kept up with the maintenance of the ride -- grease maintenance, electrical and so on. But if you are buying one and someone hasn't taken care of it before you got it, you will have many nightmares. The most problems I had with my first one were regarding the Lap Bar sensors -- they age and wear out and are nothing to change, but they're not exactly cheap. But we also took care of that ride, and kept an eye on other things (plus it was within it's first 10 years of life).

As time progresses, vibration that the ride generates has major effect on it's computers and electronics. The computer racks can go bad and need replaced (mainly because the connectors between the logic boards and the racks get corroded and vibration kills ANY electronic device. If you are buying one, you need to investigate whether or not the center logic racks have ever been replaced. You can usually tell by opening the boxes if someone's been in there and messed with things vs. one that is still factory. Another factor is the light shows -- corrosion and vibration take their toll on the wiring especially -- if you have one that is blowing fuses in the lighting system, there's probably a worn-out wire somewhere and those can take forever to trace. Many times I've seen ones where the lighting had shorts and the fuses weren't replaced with proper matching sizes as OEM and that causes the TRIACS to burn out and get 'stuck' -- this can cause cascading failure of the lighting system including backfeed into the flasher's logic boards and eventually burn one out completely. Again, this relates to proper maintenance -- if you're blowing fuses, find the short, don't circumvent by exceeding OEM spec.

http://www.amusementindustryservices.com  ) to diagnose the issue before it was tracked down. By disconnecting the strobe lights and replacing the fuse that was blown (after several tests), HE was able to diagnose and repair, and get the ride back open in a matter of minutes versus the ride being down for several hours trying to figure out what was wrong. Point in case: Computers and Carnival Rides don't mix, but if you have the knowledge and resources, you will be able to get it back open without much hassle and it will continue to be a dependable piece of equipment.

The ride is a easy piece to move, and with a good crew (2-4 men) it can move in GREAT times UP or DOWN -- but my major complaint comes from the modifications required by Chance regarding the Foot Kicker Plates (the nasty black things added to the tubs to keep stupid people from hanging their feet out of the ride). With those in place (factory requirement now), you have to re-rack all the tubs on the floor so they will fit properly and still be able to fold the walls up. IF you don't modify the floor racks, you crush tubs. Plus, the plates (no matter how you do it) make it so you have to rack two of the tubs in a different load (either a stock truck or another ride) -- Alpine Amusements racks their two last tubs on their Bumper Cars (or had in the past) to avoid damage and so on...

No matter what ride you purchase, maintenance and knowledge are the keys. IF you don't know a lot about electronics and how they're used on a carnival ride, and you have limited financial resources, stick with a ride that doesn't have all those bells and whistles that make it go because no matter what you choose you may have problems that cost major dollars to diagnose (mainly in labor, not so much parts).

Some other notes: IN MY OPINION -- the Wipeout was one of the last quality designed rides Chance came out with. Soon after, they came out with the Chaos (electrical nightmare among other things), and of course many people remember the problems with the Inverters and so on down the line. They (Wipeouts) were solid, well built pieces, with a ton of flash and it was all racked on one trailer (but they are HEAVY rides - alot of iron for that one trailer). Miller Amusements had the right idea and used a small stock truck to transport extra stuff for the ride such as a couple pieces of scenery lighting, the sound system (good because it was under lock and key obviously, but bonus because it was out of the weather), lead-lines were stored in it, as well as blocking and so on -- this lightened the main load and made many things easier to deal with. Not to mention the short-truck usually pulled a kiddie ride behind it during the jumps.

I can go on with more detail, but most people have probably stopped reading already, so I'll give it a break for the time being.
squirrel
condoralex
Friday, February 29, 2008 2:12:40 PM
Fantastic write-up, secret.squirrel. Wipeouts are what I consider a ninties fairground stape, and I really enjoyed the read and retained quite a bit of what you posted. Thanks again!
Sit back, relax, because we're taking it to the max.
2ndgencarnie
Friday, February 29, 2008 2:12:47 PM
I agree with squirrel... you can definitely make or break your gross with the piece according to your music. When I was with CTA we only had one sound system, sometimes it was on the casino, other times the Kamikaze crew would steal it, I would say the ride did 3 times as good with music rather than without.
squirrel
Friday, February 29, 2008 2:47:27 PM
Aye, thank you both for the props on the post -- I tried to keep it short, but when you evaluate a ride, I think it helps to cover all the bases -- keeps you from leaving someone in the dark about things --

@condoralex --> I agree on them being a staple of the midway -- I feel there are very few rides that no matter what you do, you can make money, but there are some rides that when done right, a midway should never be without.

Chance introduced the Trabant and Casino models back in the 60's if I remember correctly, and it's one of only a couple ride designs that have stood the test of time and survived the years of the amusement business. When they took the Trabant/Casino and updated it, they PERFECTED it's concept with the Wipeout and came out with a winner. It's really a shame they don't produce them anymore (unless you want to drop the serious money to get them to re-tool the shop for one).

@2ndgencarnie --> What's great about music and rides is that almost any ride can have it's grosses doubled with the proper music -- there are some exceptions though. An example of a ride that usually gets hurt by music are ones like the Tilt-a-Whirl -- generally no matter what you play, you hurt the ride's gross because EVERYONE rides the Tilt, but if you are playing music, your music will ALWAYS drive someone away from the ride -- there will always be someone. Either a family person or teenager that doesn't like the songs or genre of music will get in line for another ride instead, and the variety needed will have you spending more time playing music than you get earning money. With the crowd that rides the wipeout, you don't see that hurt so much because you don't get as many people who will ride one religiously -- that's where the music comes into play -- you can draw them back and back again with the right music on a Wipeout, but with a Tilt, they'll ride it regardless.

I work with a guy named Andy that can make more money with a Tilt-a-Whirl than anyone else I've ever seen -- he gets em on, runs 'em silly, and gets em off and up with another load in RECORD time. All his customers have claimed he gives the BEST rides they've ever had on a Tilt, and his grosses with the ride truly reflect that fact. But if we gave him music, his tastes would conflict with those of the customers, and then the gross would suffer no matter how good he is with the ride (in my opinion).
Ted
  •  Ted
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Friday, February 29, 2008 2:57:54 PM
I love a good wipeout, especially if the backwall still holds its good traditional color! The one trailer is a plus, backwall and all the lighting could be compared to a european if lit and painted good. Definately a great chance ride and if its got a good sound/lighting system like mentioned above a think it could do great!!
rdcolles
  •  rdcolles
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Friday, February 29, 2008 3:14:03 PM


OK, what's everyone's opinion about changing the way it looks? Nothing wrong with the original, but to me, this looks outstanding. But does it make a difference?


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squirrel
Friday, February 29, 2008 3:27:47 PM
Quote:

quote:


Originally posted by rdcolles



OK, what's everyone's opinion about changing the way it looks? Nothing wrong with the original, but to me, this looks outstanding. But does it make a difference?




I have to say that looks REALLY sharp. I'm a traditionalist when it comes to a ride. One of my favorite things about the Wipeout was the originals had the full front signs as well as the huge back wall sign, and with the lightshow, that added to the whole overall flash. There were several I've seen modified without the front sign, and to me it took some from the ride with it's main front platform and presence. But that one you've pictured there still maintains that overall appearance and does look very sharp, in my opinion. Let me ask you -- who's is that?

Below are some images of one with the full sign package. These are of the old Miller Amusements Wipeout I used to move -- the latter pictures are after my days with Miller, but the first ones are when I had it --

One thing I noticed in your pics, rdcolles, was that particular Wipeout has had it's light towers modified and no longer has the place to hang the speakers for the sound system. My original that I moved had a 4-speaker system - two hung above the entrances and pointed out to the crowds, and two were mounted behind the front sign and faced into the ride -- it made it a music powerhouse that everyone could hear, and as well it also had them mounted in a way that people waiting in the lines had overhead speakers instead of ones that sat on the platforms blasting directly in the customers' ears.

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Images are from the rideguy.com photo galleries and are copyright their respective authors (including me).
rdcolles
  •  rdcolles
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Friday, February 29, 2008 4:14:42 PM
Wade, Hastings Michigan, July 2007. Only place I've ever seen it. I'm sure Chris can give us the scoop on it.
squirrel
Friday, February 29, 2008 4:17:56 PM
Quote:

quote:


Originally posted by rdcolles

Wade, Hastings Michigan, July 2007. Only place I've ever seen it. I'm sure Chris can give us the scoop on it.


It definitely looks sharp -- I like the color scheme for sure -- I'd like to see it lit up at night too -- Lights are 50% or more of what makes a ride for me, but that's because I start at 'em instead of ride 'em, I think...
with-it
  •  with-it
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Friday, February 29, 2008 4:37:16 PM
I personally never liked the Doghouse in front of the ride... It hides all the action....People like to see other people having fun and it only makes it worse when the door(s) are open on the Doghouse....
cny_chris
Friday, February 29, 2008 5:31:38 PM
Personally, I haven't seen many Wipeouts. I've seen a lot more Trabants, and have to echo that the music is key to the ride. One in particular that I'm thinking of was the show's music ride until they got a Majestic Musik Express. The new owner of the ride also uses it as their music ride, from what I'm told.
"A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step." - Lao-Tsu

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condoralex
Friday, February 29, 2008 5:33:26 PM
Quote:

quote:


Originally posted by with-it

I personally never liked the Doghouse in front of the ride... It hides all the action....People like to see other people having fun and it only makes it worse when the door(s) are open on the Doghouse....



Agreed. This was a ridiculous Chance tradition at late, just look at the Inverter and Chaos.
Sit back, relax, because we're taking it to the max.
squirrel
Friday, February 29, 2008 6:53:50 PM
Quote:

quote:


Originally posted by condoralex

Quote:

quote:


Originally posted by with-it

I personally never liked the Doghouse in front of the ride... It hides all the action....People like to see other people having fun and it only makes it worse when the door(s) are open on the Doghouse....



Agreed. This was a ridiculous Chance tradition at late, just look at the Inverter and Chaos.



I think I can see where you're coming from -- one of the things about the Wipeout design vs. the Trabants and Casinos was changing the design from a 3-4 foot tall platform that was level to the inclined plane that the Wipeout uses. In my opinion that allowed for much more vision all the way around the ride, especially for those who are a few feet away -- you actually get to see more of the ride because of the angle and that counteracted the doghouse blocking the view concept (except for the back wall blocking the rear). I will say that the doors being bungee'd open does take away from it a little, but that thing turns into an oven if they're closed on a hot day... Personally, I did appreciate the doghouse, as the Wipeout is one of the rides that can operate with no issues in the rain, and for some reason kids still ride rides even in a downpour, and it sucks being the operator standing in the rain running it for em (just ask my buddy Andy who as a die-hard runs that Tilt rain or shine) - so it was a pro and a con for me either way. This did make it a corner piece instead of a center piece though as well. But to me, the doghouse didn't take that much away from the ride except for shows that allowed the placement of tacky stickers all over the windows of the doghouse... I felt it added more to the dominance of it's appearance to be honest. I remember in my past seeing people flocked all the way around the fencing on the ride watching and enjoying, vs staring at a Trabant where they can barely see the action.