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Roller Coaster Helmet

For rough rides.
 
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I recently came back from Cedar Point, an amusement park on a peninsula on Lake Erie. Cedar Point is a very old park (the first roller coaster there was built 111 years ago), and so has many old rides. Three of the roller coasters, one 27 years old, one 8 years old, and the last brand new, are rough and can toss riders' heads around to the point of pain. I came off them with red ears and/or a headache each time, wishing for some padding for my poor head and ears. Many roller coasters at other parks are just as rough.

Enter the Roller Coaster Helmet. Looking just like a regular open-face motorcycle helmet, riders put it on before boarding the ride. After the harness is down and locked, the rider positions their head in a comfortable place in the harness and presses a small button on the top of the helmet, which activates three small hideaway spring pistons. These fold out of the helmet and press against each side and the back of the harness/seat to absorb sudden shocks. The springs are relatively soft so as not to give the rider whiplash when their body moves and their head stays in place. The pistons fold back into the helmet when the built-in accelerometer detects the end of the ride.

For rider comfort, the helmet has air vents and is padded inside to absorb more shock. The padding also absorbs the roar of the coaster, as well as the shrieks of some of the passengers.

The Roller Coaster Helmet can be purchased at the entrance to the park or on any ride that it can be used on, in a myriad of colors or patterns and sizes. It can also be rented for a small fee, with the requirement that the passenger keep the included plastic sheet inside the helmet to prevent odors and moisture becoming stuck in the padding.

tekym, Aug 03 2003

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       welcome back bert... sorry but you just would not get me up on one of those things no matter how you kitted me out. +1 anyway
po, Aug 03 2003
  

       Yay! I *love* Cedar Point. I've been away too, too long.
phoenix, Aug 03 2003
  

       The idea is practical enough, but I would prefer a fluid-dampened (or 'buffered') circuit over that of a spring, the spring just won't suffice... as you would come to find out in early stages of prorotyping. Perhaps the ideal would be to combine the springs with fluid-dampening?   

       (+) though... anything that helps you have fun without spraining something is good... <G>
X2Entendre, Aug 03 2003
  

       Whatever pain you save yourself on the roller coaster you will just receive later on when you get beat-up for being the wuss who wore a helmet on a roller coaster. I'm not saying you're a wuss, I'm just saying...
DeathNinja, Aug 03 2003
  

       Top Thrill Dragster...incredible rush. Can't wait to go back in September.   

       Anyway, my cousin Zach (yeah, you hear a lot about him, live with it) tried wearing pillows over his ears on a rough roller coaster. They burst open.
Nemmy, Dec 31 2004
  
      
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