Monorail Refurbishment

Steve74

TS Member
Where is it controlled from? I'm guessing one of the cabins on the stations (if there is one on the main entrance station?)
 

Josh

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
Where is it controlled from? I'm guessing one of the cabins on the stations (if there is one on the main entrance station?)

Each train has its own autopilot which communicates with the other trains to keep the correct distance and knows where to stop in each station (sometimes :tearsofjoy:).

Each station has a control cabin, which has a member of staff in it to dispatch the trains when ready.

The drivers control the doors, and have the ability to drive the trains manually if needed, but in normal operation it will always be run in auto.
 

Matt N

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Mako (SeaWorld Orlando)
Out of interest, what sort of throughput does the monorail get these days? TowersStreet’s ride file for it says 4,100pph, but I was unsure whether the procedure with not letting people wait on the station platform anymore was slowing things down. Is it slowing things down? I know it certainly did on Nemesis for the brief period at the start of the season when the airgates broke, so I assume it’s similar on the Monorail.

Also, I rode the ride in April, and I have to say; I get what people mean about the windows. I don’t know about anyone else, but I found them really quite hard to see through, even though I’m often told I have very good eyesight, and they were particularly hard to take pictures through; I tried to get some nice aerial shots of the park as we passed over it, but they didn’t come out particularly well. In fairness, though, I guess you couldn’t have the nice visuals on the outside if you had windows you could see through properly.
 

John

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance
I'm not sure where the figure of 4100 comes from but it seems pretty unachievable to me. Each train can seat around 100 people, so 4100 would be a train every 90 seconds or so. I've never timed how long it takes to get round but I'd guess that if you had 5 trains on the system and ran them evenly spaced without stopping in the stations the trains would probably be at least 90s apart, so to get close 4100 they would need to run more trains than they do currently AND to drastically improve loading times. I'd settle for just the latter.

The condition of the trains these days is extremely poor. It's more obvious on wet days when there's water leaking in and you can see literally nothing out of the windows. Sadly I think anything more than minor cosmetic improvements is very unlikely.
 

AT86

TS Member
I think originally the monorail had 9 trains (and they were each named after a planet I believe), I suspect that 4100ph figure comes from the days it ran flat out on all trains?

No idea how many working trains they have left these days, plus the added faff of the way they operate it now the throughput must be way lower than that figure.
 

John

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance
They bought 10, one was written off prior to the rest getting vinyl wrapped. Since then they've lost another (daisy) so there are 8 on the system now. Some of those are certainly used more than others but I think they all work to some degree.
 

Matt N

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Mako (SeaWorld Orlando)
They bought 10, one was written off prior to the rest getting vinyl wrapped. Since then they've lost another (daisy) so there are 8 on the system now. Some of those are certainly used more than others but I think they all work to some degree.
Do they run all of the trains they own at once? Or do they tend to run a varying amount dependant on how busy the park is?

Am I imagining it, or did I hear it get said that the ride now runs less trains than it did in its prime?
 

rob666

TS Member
Think it used to max out at six trains, one entering each station as the previous one left, with the third "on each side" running the track.
Very efficient, very fast queue, constantly shuffling forward, and probably not seen in at least a decade.
 

AT86

TS Member
I’m no expert, but wouldn’t be surprised if they undertake annual maintenance on the monorail trains on a rolling basis throughout the year, so at any point they won’t have all trains available for service, but it saves them having to do all the work in the winter when tech services are at their busiest.
 

Josh

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
The most trains that can be run at once is 7, although it hasn't run 7 trains since the mid 00's, or even 6 trains recently. Most of the time these days it's on 4 trains, with 5 on the busiest of days, the new loading procedure makes it pointless to run any more as the trains just stack up outside each station.

It used to take 10 minutes for each train to complete a lap when guests could be pre-batched onto the platform, so on the highest capacity 7 trains would pass through each station every 10 minutes. That would therefore be 42 trains an hour, approx. 100 people per train would give a throughput of 4,200 pph, so that's where the theoretical 4,100 has come from.
 

Kraken27

TS Member
I forgot all about them being named after Solar System Planets. That was awesome

Yep - that was when it first opened... I even think Spock from Star Trek was present at the official opening. Back in the Broome era it was quite common for serious celebrities (i.e. not Z-listers) to be present at ride openings. i.e. Spock at the Monorail. Kylie Minogue at the Alton Mouse etc.

When the trains were names after planets where must have been some smirks on the monorail radio channel... "Pluto calling Uranus over"...
 

delta79

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis, Air
Yep - that was when it first opened... I even think Spock from Star Trek was present at the official opening.

It was William Shatner and it should have also been George Takei, however a fight issue meant George turned up a hour or two late. Leaving him open to jokes about the enterprise navigator not navigating to alton towers on time.

Sent from my SM-A217F using Tapatalk
 

Kraken27

TS Member
A copy of the news report from opening day



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At about 01:30 in that video (and indeed the preview screenshot YouTube have used, above)... it looks suspiciously like the monorail train is travelling with the drivers compartment external door open.
 

John_P

TS Member
I was going to say wasn't it Shapner, Leonard Nemoy opened the Springfield monorail in the Simpsons.

Fun fact The Simpsons actually approached George Takei initially (who'd previously appeared on the simpsons) but he turned them down as he was very much an advocate for public transport and didn't want to be in something that disparaged the idea.
 

Matt.GC

TS Member
Fun fact The Simpsons actually approached George Takei initially (who'd previously appeared on the simpsons) but he turned them down as he was very much an advocate for public transport and didn't want to be in something that disparaged the idea.
That is interesting as I knew he'd been in it before. Note how he was late for the opening of the Alton monorail, he shouldn't have stopped for that haircut!
 
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