Music Express

Last updated
The Love Train is an example of the Music Express ride when lit at night. The Love Train.jpg
The Love Train is an example of the Music Express ride when lit at night.
A Music Express in operation at Six Flags Great Adventure Musikexpress.JPG
A Music Express in operation at Six Flags Great Adventure
A Music Express at night in operation at Kennywood Park Musik Express.JPG
A Music Express at night in operation at Kennywood Park

A Music Express is an amusement ride based on the original Caterpillar rides of Germany. Several near-identical ride designs are also produced by other companies: Musik Express by Italian company Bertazzon and US Majestic Rides, Himalaya by American company Wisdom Rides, German company Mack, and French company Reverchon, and Silver Streak by Wisdom Rides. This ride is a modern adaptation of the famous Harry Traver Caterpillar rides.

Contents

Design and operation

The ride features twenty 3-passenger cars connected in a circle. These cars rotate on a track with alternating sloped and flat sections. Rotation is possible in both a backward and forward direction, as the ride is manually operated. The ride is powered by 4 DC motors, and can reach a maximum speed of 12 revolutions per minute. (Certain older models have a hydraulic tire/rim drive and they have a tendency to go faster).

The riders in each car are restrained by a single solid lap bar that is locked across the body of the car, making the ride unsuitable for young children or people of short stature. The bar must be manually locked or unlocked, and only locks in one position. Lights and music are also controlled by the operator, which (as the name suggests) contribute heavily to the ride experience. After a certain amount of rotations or minutes, the ride operator will be alerted by the control box that the speed is going to increase, usually by a light on the box. At that time the operator will speak on a microphone asking the riders if they would like to go faster. Sometimes the ride operator can do this earlier than the alert light to build suspense. After a minute or two of faster speed, the ride will then slow down, and the operator can then ask the riders if they would like to go backwards. The speed up element is then repeated again only done in reverse. Most parks and carnivals require riders to be at least 42 inches or even taller, depending on circumstances and ride design.

Most Musik Expresses are built with a backdrop dividing the rear third of the ride from the front two-thirds. This backdrop, normally covered in artwork and lights, and providing a mild headchopper-like effect as the riders enter and exit the rear section. As this blocks lines of sight, additional staff are required to safely supervise this ride in operation.

More common in Europe than the US, some Music Express rides have a canopy that the operator can cover the ride while in operation, very much like the old caterpillar rides.

At Kennywood Park's and Dorney Park & Wildwater Kingdom's Musik Express, written above are the words "Mit Musik Geht Alles Besser", which translated from German reads, "With Music Everything Goes Better."

The variant used in fairs across Hawaii feature murals of several famous artists, such as The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Elvis Presley, the logo of The Rolling Stones, and even fictional bands and singers.

Variations

Video of Super Himalaya at Cedar Point, a Mack Rides variation
Bertazzon Musik Express
No major variations from Mack Rides version.
Majestic Manufacturing Musik Express
14 cars, hydraulic locking system, increased top RPM. [1]
Wisdom Rides Himalaya
22 cars. [2]
Mack Rides Himalaya
Music Express, Diskothek
Reverchon Himalaya
Original Himalaya ride design. [3]
Wisdom Rides Silver Streak
16 cars, smaller height difference, multiple lap bar positions. [4]
SDC Amor Express
Billed as "The Love Machine", circa late 70s, with hydraulic drive and canopy, very much like the original caterpillar rides. Not many found in US anymore but they still can be found in European fair circuits and parks.

Appearances

NameManufacturerLocationOpenedStatusClosedNotes
Aztek Express Mack Rides Bobbejaanland 1996Operating
Cannonball ExpressMack Rides Great Escape 1985Operating
CosmotronWisdom Rides Knoebels Amusement Resort 1998OperatingFully enclosed. Converted from a Caterpillar ride
Crab RaceWisdom RidesFantasy Island2021Operating
Electric RingPreston & Barbieri Legendia c.2014OperatingPreviously located at Sommerland Syd as Safari-Expressen (unknown-2012).
Expreso MusicalMack Rides Six Flags México 1990Operating
FantasiaSobbema Coney Beach Pleasure Park 1999Operating
Flash: Speed ForceMack Rides Six Flags Magic Mountain 1974OperatingFormerly named Himalaya, Subway, ACME Atom Smasher, and Atom Smasher.
GalaxySoli Adventureland 1980Defunct1990
HilltopperMack Rides California's Great America 1977Defunct
HimalayaWisdom Rides Adventureland 2000Operating
Himalaya Reverchon Kentucky Kingdom 1990OperatingStanding But Not Operating (SBNO) along with the rest of the park 2009-2013.
HimalayaReverchonSylvan Beach Amusement Park2009OperatingPreviously located at Casino Pier (1966-2000's).
HimalayaReverchon Trimper's Rides 1976Operating
Industrial RevolutionMack Rides Six Flags Great America 1977Defunct1984Formerly named Hilltopper
Music ExpressPreston & BarbieriAllou! Fun Park2018Operating
Music ExpressMoser Rides Hersheypark 1999Operating
Music ExpressMack Rides Indiana Beach 2011Operating
Music ExpressMack Rides Playland c.1981Defunct2022
Music Express SBF Visa Group PowerPark 2002Operating
Music ExpressModern ProductsRainbow Park1975Defunct2008Previously located at Ocean Beach Fun Fair (1975-1995).
Music ExpressMack Rides Rusutsu Resort 1997Operating
Music ExpressWisdom RIdes Rye Playland 2008Operating
Music Express Bertazzon Seabreeze Amusement Park 2008OperatingPreviously located at Wild West World (2007).
Music ExpressBertazzon Waldameer & Water World 2013Operating
Musik ExpressBertazzon Casino Pier 2014Operating
Musik ExpressMack Rides Cliff's Amusement Park 2005OperatingPreviously located at Miracle Strip Amusement Park (1973-2003).
Musik ExpressMack Rides Dorney Park 1984Operating
Musik ExpressMack Rides Kennywood 1987Operating
Musik ExpressMack RidesKuwait Magicc.2007OperatingPreviously located at Yokohama Dreamland (1980-2002).
Musik ExpressMack Rides Lagoon 1982Operating
Musik ExpressPreston & Barbieri M&D's 2017OperatingFormerly named Kiss Me Quick

Previously located at Sofia Land (2002-2006), and Dreamland Margate (2015-2016).

Musik ExpressBertazzon Morey's Piers 1991Operating
Musik ExpressMack Rides Six Flags Great Adventure 1976Defunct2007
Muzik ExpressMack Rides Geauga Lake 1978Defunct2002
Ooort's ExpressSBF Visa Group Berjaya Times Square Theme Park 2003Operating
Rev BoosterSBF Visa Group Ocean Park Hong Kong 2011Operating
Rip CurlWisdom Rides Fun Spot Orlando 2013Operating
Rock & RollBertazzonBelle City Amusements2003Operating
Rock & RollBertazzon Fun Spot Kissimee 2022Operating
Rock & RollBertazzonPlayland's Castaway Cove2021Operating
Rock JetReverchon Gröna Lund 1976Operating
Rockin' ReelerReverchon Worlds of Fun 1991Defunct2005
Space RaceSobema Flambards Theme Park 1990OperatingFormerly named Chariot Race

Previously traveled German fair circuit (1987-1988) and located at Great Yarmouth Pleasure Beach (1990).

Super HimalayaMack Rides Cedar Point 1970Operating
SuperCatPreston & Barbieri Valleyfair 1976Operating
Tango TrainSBF Visa Group Luna Park Sydney 2016Operating
TsunamiBertazzon Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk 1999Operating
YucatanMack Rides PortAventura Park 1995Operating

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References

  1. "Majestic Mfg. – Musik Express Specifications". Archived from the original on 2012-09-06. Retrieved 2007-01-28.
  2. "Wisdom Rides – Midsize Himalaya". Archived from the original on 2007-03-12. Retrieved 2007-01-28.
  3. "Home". May's Himalaya Fan Website. Retrieved 2016-09-16.
  4. "Wisdom Rides – Silver Streak". Archived from the original on 2007-03-12. Retrieved 2007-01-28.