Original Kings Island Bat Layout With Inversions – Rediscovered
In the late 1970’s Kings Island was a booming park. After it’s 1972 opening, the park vastly expanded adding large attractions such as Kenton’s Cove Keelboat Canal, Screamin Demon, Lion Country Safari, and of course the Beast. After many meetings, Kings Island executives agreed that the park needed a new innovative record breaking coaster to retain attendance.
The park turned to famed manufacturer Arrow Development to produce a new coaster. Arrow had previously worked with Coney and Kings Island on numerous rides, and were well acquainted with each other. From 1978 through 1979, both companies worked on a new coaster design featuring Arrow’s proposed suspended coaster track — a coaster that would become well-known as The Bat. This new coaster featured cars that were suspended from the track and swung freely. Arrow offered the ability to insert corkscrews into the ride’s layout. Kings Island gladly accepted, and two inversions were added into the new coaster’s layout.
The inversions were two corked barrel rolls that were shaped in a manner similar to the corkscrew inversions found on other coasters. Due to the cars being suspended underneath the track, the inversion was shallower to allow for a smooth heartline inversion as well as generate the forces needed for the cars to remain stable during the inversion. Each inversion was 60 feet long, and had a proper lead in and exit to allow for optimal g-forces.
As work continued on The Bat, a secondary plan was developed in case of the original design not being approved or running into issues. This secondary plan featured the cars taking two sharp hills into a quick descending helix that would cross under the hill. As the designs were being finalized, both parties decided to go with the helixes instead of the inversions.
The quick helixes were notorious for the extreme swinging it induced, as seen in this early video of the ride that was installed.
The original unused design of the Bat was relatively unknown until portions of the diagrams appeared as easter eggs in the Fast Lane Plus queue line of Orion.
Below is a POV and off-ride video of the Bat as originally envisioned and designed with the inversions. Would you have like to ride the Bat with this layout? Let us know on our socials or in the comments below.
For tickets and more information, visit the official Kings Island website by clicking here.
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