By , September 6, 2012
Colin Coon

Hello again everybody,

Last week was rather exciting to say the least and was a real eye opener for me in many different ways.  More on that in a bit, but if you don’t already know Kevin the other intern has arrived in Sunbury and has already completed his first week of work.  Go check out his blog as while I will be talking mostly about train assembly Kevin will be talking a lot about the structural components going on with Fun Spot and Great America.

Speaking of Great America, on the 29th Gold Striker was officially announced!  We were all pretty excited about that, and the train components should be arriving in Sunbury in the near future.  So along with Fun Spot I will also be working on the Great America trains as well.

But the bulk of our work was done at Dollywood this past week.  On Monday Dan and I drove down from Sunbury to Pigeon Forge, which took about 10 hours total including a stop for lunch and gas.  Of course, to relax a bit we spent some time on the Go Carts located on the strip.  And also the ever-amazing Jurassic Jungle Boat ride, which most definitely was the highlight of my time spent in Pigeon Forge.  If you’ve never been on it, I highly suggest doing it!

Anyway, on Tuesday and Thursday we were on site at Thunderhead doing some small projects both on the trains and on the structure itself.  Dan and I finished our little project up in a little over a day, so for about 10 hours on Thursday we helped the other three guys do some structural work.  Until that day I completely underestimated what it takes to build a wooden roller coaster.  I mean we only replaced a few dozen boards or so in the whole ride, but the manual labor required to do so was completely insane.  I give these guys a lot of credit for doing what they do to keep a wooden coaster up and running (while also looking good too).

It was a really cool experience to get some work in the field with one of our rides.  It really wasn’t anything like what I was expecting, but it was probably one of the best learning experiences that I’ve ever had in this industry.  It takes a lot to keep a ride looking and functioning like new, and I now have a better grasp on exactly how much work is involved.

Until next time..


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