Just five more weeks before the start of the new season the works at Belgian Bobbejaanland are in full swing. None less than three new attractions have to be completed until the beginning of April. While the construction of the Vekoma Junior Coaster is nearly done and the concrete foundation of the looping coaster Typhoon is waiting for the arrival of the first steel components, the assembly of Sledge Hammer, a gigantic swing ride, reaches its very peak.

The most impressive step of the erection of the Giant Frisbee is surely the assembly of the main steel structure and the installation of the pendulum arm. As a consequence of the engineering, the choreography of the four cranes has to be finished within one day, and the enormous hub will finally be placed in a height of 26 meters. A total of five components is needed to complete the basic structure. Next to the four supports this is a module consisting of the pre-assembled pendulum arm and the hub including the electrical motors.

At first two supports placed side by side become connected to the foundation. For that one crane lifts the steel component while another one ensures the correct positioning of the lower end. The connection to the foundation is done by a huge pin, so the support can still rotate around this point. In the meantime the largest crane has already lifted the hub. Now it is a matter of high precision work to align the three parts using the cranes in a position in which they can be bolted together. This interim result is further on held by the largest crane while the other ones position and set up the second pair of supports. After bolting them together the basic structure is completed, and in the next step the five gondola segments, each one providing ten seats, will be attached.

Junior Coaster

Fastening the supports at the foundation with pins not only simplifies the assembly process. Just like any other material the steel used for this ride compresses and expands on dynamic load. The pendulum with its heavy load constantly strains the construction during operation. So the connection would break sooner or later if it was inelastic.

Already at this stage Sledge Hammer majestically looms into the sky. The total height will increase to around 32 meters as soon as the complex decoration is completely attached. This will happen as soon as the ride will have had its first test runs - which is due to happen in around one week. But even without any theming the Giant Ride does its name every credit. The structure is truly gigantic and surely surpasses many roller coaster regarding the thrill factor.

Junior Coaster

At the other end of the park the Vekoma Junior Coaster is a rather family friendly attraction. The team of RCS, which already has dismantled the Looping Star, has recently finished the assembly of the steel structure, and now the electrical installation is done under the supervision of the manufacturer. The first train has already arrived, waiting on the transfer track to do its first rounds. The track partly runs in a narrow strip between the monorail and the lake, but also crosses a footpath to negotiate some sweeping curves on the other side. For a roller coaster of that size it is rather unusual that magnetic brakes care for a smooth end of the ride.

Typhoon - A roller coaster emerges

At the beginning of march the assembly of Typhoon, which is supposed to last about three weeks, will start off, and so all works at Bobbejaanland are well on schedule. This means that all three novelties are expected to open up in time when the park starts its new season on April 3rd.

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