Mid-way Recap!

By , October 22, 2012
Kevin Young

Hey everyone!

As I reach the midpoint of my internship here at GCII, I thought it might be a good idea to recap some of the things I’ve done and learned so far for those who haven’t been reading along.  It’s already been a great couple of months here and I’ve been busy from Day 1.

The Fun Spot project is the primary reason I was brought in to GCII.  This project, GCII’s first ever completely steel-structured wooden coaster, requires hundreds of individual supports that are cut and punched to specifications here in Sunbury.  While we have just scratched the surface on the processing of this material, the problems that have already been uncovered and solved have given me valuable experience into how to go about managing a first-time project.  Furthermore, seeing the attention to detail taken by the employees here in regards to this project has shown me exactly why GCII’s rides are some of the highest quality in the amusement industry.  Absolutely no detail is too small to examine in depth, especially when dealing with a new structure type.  I cannot wait to see White Lightning built and know that I had a hand in its creation.

In addition to White Lightning, Jerry has given me many opportunities to get my hands dirty working with part fabrication for Gold Striker as well as our transfer tables.  I’ve gotten to see several parts through from raw material all the way through final painting.  I’ve also gotten to go out to the job site and see how some of these individual parts fit into the big picture of the ride being built, which from an engineering standpoint might be the coolest part.  Seeing exactly how a part fits onto a ride and getting to experience part fabrication first hand will be invaluable in the future with part design.

So, what are some of the big picture things that working at GCII has taught me thus far?  First, and most obviously, there is a whole lot more to building a roller coaster than jotting down an awesome layout.  Every individual part of the ride is carefully designed, from the loading platform all the way through the final brake run.  Secondly, when working at a small company the responsibilities of the employees are amplified much more so than at a large corporation.  As an intern, l get to do meaningful work that has a direct impact on the product GCII produces.  This has created a highly rewarding experience so far.  Lastly, as an engineer it is very rare that you will work exclusively with your discipline.  So far in my internship I’ve gotten to see civil and mechanical engineering in action, as well as part fabrication and construction.  These are three different disciplines all equally important in making a high quality ride.

Well, I hope this has been a decent recap of what I’ve done so far this term.  In my next entry I’ll get back to talking about our current activities and such, which should be pretty interesting.  I hope my blogs so far have been informative and I encourage you to continue reading throughout the second half of the term.

Happy Early Halloween!

 

 

 

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