Knoebels Impulse Opening Weekend Ride Review 4-26-15

It was a tight envelope, but I managed to make it up to opening weekend at Knoebels and get a lap on Knoebels’ newest and first steel coaster in over a decade: Impulse. It didn’t disappoint and was a very enjoyable ride! If you want to be surprised, skip over the next few paragraphs and go right to the photos!

After entering under the brake run, you walk behind the machine room for the ride as it towers all around you. While it still needs a little work, you enter the main queue area, that is set up similar to Fahrenheit (ride area off to the right, station on the left with two sets of stairs leading to the station (future single rider line?), and base of the lift straight ahead. While it may seem familiar to that Intamin coaster 50-some miles to the south, that is where it ends.

Once in the station, an employee groups you into your rows for the car. Once the gates open, you just hand your loose items to the attendant, take your seat, and pull back on your lap restraint, which is pretty beefy and comes with shin bars. Think of it as a souped-up Skyrush lapbar that covers your entire lap.

Once your carĀ is all-clear, you are dispatched to the front of the station where you wait for the other one in front of you to enter the final helix. Once ready, the car creeps slowly around the first turn to the base of the lift. Unlike Fahrenheit, your car automatically engages the lift and pulls you straight up to 98-feet.

That view of the blue sky within seconds turns to ground as the car starts to rocket down the vertical drop. You are suddenly town out of your seat with some airtime. Upon reaching the top-speed of over 55 mph, you curve into the cobra roll inversion, which is a little looser than others and you experience your first section of positive g-forces and hang time at the top of the inversion sections.

Next, you enter a brief straight section of track that transports you to the vertical loop element, where you experience more positive g-forces at the base and hang time at the peak. Next is a banked turn over the queue line and a helix that circles the lift. Following up is one of my favorite parts of the ride: the heartline roll.

Think of it as a faster version of Hydra’s mojo-roll at Dorney Park and you get this twist that threads right through the vertical loop. You are literally out of your seat the entire time! To conclude your thrilling experience, you enter the helix finale where there is one last dose of positive g-forces waiting for you and into the magnetic brakes that bring you to a sudden, but gentile stop.

In conclusion, Impulse is a great addition to the Knoebels coaster line-up. While it might not have the airtime of Phoenix, the lateral forces of Twister, or the nostalgia of Flying Turns, it does have hang time, positive g-forces and inversions on today’s modern scream machines. It is a coaster that will make you ride it again and again!

Welcome back to Knoebels. 2015 is a big year for the park as it recently opened it's 6th coaster.

Welcome back to Knoebels. 2015 is a big year for the park as it recently opened it’s 6th coaster.

For three dollars, you can enjoy their new ride. It is included in the Basic wristband plan. Riders 48" to 52" inches tall need to ride in a special booster seat that attaches to the seat in the vehicle.

For three dollars, you can enjoy their new ride. It is included in the Basic wristband plan. Riders 48″ to 52″ inches tall need to ride in a special booster seat that attaches to the seat in the vehicle.

The queue line is the best place to witness what will unfold on your ride.

The queue line is the best place to witness what will unfold on your ride.

You can get some shots such as this one.

You can get some shots such as this one.

Since the ride was made by a German company (Zierer), the flag of Germany was hung on the transfer track.

Since the ride was made by a German company (Zierer), the flag of Germany was hung on the transfer track.

While the ride is open, a lot of work still needs to be done such as landscaping in the ride area and queue rows for the line.

While the ride is open, a lot of work still needs to be done such as landscaping in the ride area and queue rows for the line.

There are two stairs leading to the station. Only one was being used so far. Single rider line maybe for the second one (hoping).

There are two stairs leading to the station. Only one was being used so far. Single rider line maybe for the second one (hoping).

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It does crawl around this turn to the lift.

It does crawl around this turn to the lift.

Riders 48" to 52" need this booster seat that goes right on to the seats on the cars.

Riders 48″ to 52″ need this booster seat that goes right on to the seats on the cars.

As you can see, the lap restraints are pretty big.

As you can see, the lap restraints are pretty big.

Waiting to unload.

Waiting to unload.

Once ready, the car moves to the front of the station to wait for the rest of the ride to be clear of cars.

Once ready, the car moves to the front of the station to wait for the rest of the ride to be clear of cars.

The ride fences do allow you to get under the tower helix in the back near the road.

The ride fences do allow you to get under the tower helix in the back near the road.

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Be sure to get out there and ride it!

Be sure to get out there and ride it!

Thanks for reading!

-Chris

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Knoebels Impulse Construction Update 2-24-15

Yesterday, I joined All American Thrills on a trip up to Knoebels to get my first look at Impulse and to help them out with their construction update. You can find their update that includes video here. Some of the photos you see here may also be included in their update as well, just to let you know ahead of time.

A little over half of Impulse is now together with the lift hill currently being added and it is a little more than three weeks into construction. Pieces are going up at a rapid rate of one every nine minutes (within the 40 minutes we were there, they pretty much had one level of the lift hill supports in. We were told by one of the crew that testing could start in as few as several weeks.

I am willing to be this is the first drop.

I am willing to be this is the first drop.

Same with this being the support for the top of the lift. If so, then this lift will look different than it's counterpart out in Utah.

Same with this being the support for the top of the lift. If so, then this lift will look different from its counterpart out in Utah.

They are starting to get down to the last few pieces.

They are starting to get down to the last few pieces.

This little beauty is the test car. Given how heavy-duty it looks, it wouldn't shock me if this turns into an actual ride vehicle.

This little beauty is the test car. Given how heavy-duty it looks, it wouldn’t shock me if this turns into an actual ride vehicle.

I mean, it looks like it has magnetic brakes on it so why not?

I mean, it looks like it has magnetic brakes on it so why not?

Walking from the parking lot to the front of the park, this is what will welcome you this year.

Walking from the parking lot to the front of the park, this is what will welcome you this year.

It's tight, compact, and looks like it will really be a favorite this summer!

It’s tight, compact, and looks like it will really be a favorite this summer!

I love the structure of the loop for some reason.

I love the structure of the loop for some reason.

The cobra roll looks interesting as the mid-section seems to be a little higher than from others I have seen.

The cobra roll looks interesting as the mid-section seems to be a little higher than from others I have seen.

This coaster also looks to be very photo friendly as well. Just needs a train in this shot!

This coaster also looks to be very photo friendly as well. Just needs a train in this shot!

Here's the main section that they were working on today. The lift motor and the first section of the support structure for the lift is in.

Here’s the main section that they were working on today. The lift motor and the first section of the support structure for the lift is in.

They had a collection of pieces sitting out ready to be added next.

They had a collection of pieces sitting out ready to be added next.

Even though the lift isn't fully up yet, the cobra roll is huge!

Even though the lift isn’t fully up yet, the cobra roll is huge!

The track for the first turn out of the station and base of the lift is in.

The track for the first turn out of the station and base of the lift is in.

Another nice shot that would look great if it had a car in (and more track)!

Another nice shot that would look great if it had a car in (and more track)!

Drive tires ready to be installed.

Drive tires ready to be installed.

They were pouring concrete for the station while we were there. Knoebels is handling that part of the ride.

They were pouring concrete for the station while we were there. Knoebels is handling that part of the ride.

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After they got done with lunch, work resumed.

After they got done with lunch, work resumed.

As soon as they would be ready to lift a new pieces into place, another would be brought over from the parking lot and rigged to be ready to be moved into place.

As soon as they would be ready to lift a new pieces into place, another would be brought over from the parking lot and rigged to be ready to be moved into place.

Here's the first piece we saw get ready to go in.

Here’s the first piece we saw get ready to go in.

There it goes.

There it goes.

Several minutes later, it's in and they were ready to move on to the next one.

Several minutes later, it’s in and they were ready to move on to the next one.

Here comes the next piece from the parking lot.

Here comes the next piece from the parking lot.

Second piece.

Second piece.

Third piece.

Third piece.

From the first to the third piece took about 40 minutes to do. No wonder this thing is going up at a rapid rate!

From the first to the third piece took about 40 minutes to do. No wonder this thing is going up at a rapid rate!

Thanks again to Walt at All American Thrills for letting me tag along to get to see Impulse for the first time. After seeing it the other day, it really has me excited to ride it this spring!

Thanks for reading!

-Chris C.

P.S. Be sure to also check out the blog that I will also be doing over at All American Thrills. I will be doing some special feature articles and commentary pieces over there as well as help them with their photo gallery. As for now, I will keep this blog but it will be more for construction updates and park updates.

Knoebels Impulse Groundbreaking Ceremony 9/29/14

Knoebels officially broke ground today on their first major steel roller coaster in ten years since Whirlwind: Impulse. Site follower and friend, Pat Kemper was at the ceremony and sent me these photos from the press conference and groundbreaking that followed.

Knoebels also posted a 14 minute video of the complete ceremony as well. Their current timetable on Impulse’s construction.

October to Late January: Foundation and footer pouring and drilling.

Mid-December to Mid-January: Supports and track start to arrive.

Late January to April: Vertical construction of the actual ride.

Possible opening by opening day 2015.

Link to Knoebels’ video of the ceremony: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=QqOsWIKtcHg

Today Knoebels broke ground on their next big coaster called Impulse.

Today Knoebels broke ground on their next big coaster called Impulse.

In the words of Monty Python: "Consult the book of Armaments!".

In the words of Monty Python: “Consult the book of Armaments!”.

Like the other coasters that were built at the park, there was a contractor list for the ride.

Like the other coasters that were built at the park, there was a contractor list for the ride.

Dick Knoebel was present and mentioned that Impulse will be the biggest undertaking for the park since Phoenix was built.

Dick Knoebel was present and mentioned that Impulse will be the biggest undertaking for the park since Phoenix was built.

Buddy Knoebel brought up an interesting statistic in that only 2% of family businesses make it to the 4th generation of the family.

Buddy Knoebel brought up an interesting statistic in that only 2% of family businesses make it to the 4th generation of the family.

Rick Knoebel, part of the 4th generation of the family, said that he did a lot of traveling with his brother and cousin to find a ride that was a perfect fit for Knoebels.

Rick Knoebel, part of the 4th generation of the family, said that he did a lot of traveling with his brother and cousin to find a ride that was a perfect fit for Knoebels.

Another 4th generation Kneobel, Trevor, gave a timeline on the construction of Impulse. He said that the coaster could be open as early as opening day 2015 in April.

Another 4th generation Kneobel, Trevor, gave a timeline on the construction of Impulse. He said that the coaster could be open as early as opening day 2015 in April.

Group photo before the shoveling.

Group photo before the shoveling.

...and construction has begun!

…and construction has begun!

With two world-class wooden coasters, a great indoor coaster, the top new ride for 2014, and now a new thrilling steel coaster, Knoebels looks like it will have an even better coaster line-up for  2015.

With two world-class wooden coasters, a great indoor coaster, the top new ride for 2014, and now a new thrilling steel coaster, Knoebels looks like it will have an even better coaster line-up for 2015.

Looks like they want to get a head start before the big digging starts. lol

Looks like they want to get a head start before the big digging starts. lol

4GK39Phall Phunfest is on Saturday, which is sure to be awesome! Thanks again to Pat Kemper for taking the photos!

Thanks for reading!

-Chris

Knoebels Impulse Construction Update 9-24-14

While in the area on Wednesday, I managed to take a trip by Knoebels and check on the progress of Impulse. There really wasn’t much except for survey stakes, a construction fence, and a flat dirt lot. Word has it that ground will be broken on Monday for actual construction to start. I’ll be back up soon for another update before the end of the season.

It's hard to miss where Impulse is going to be.

It’s hard to miss where Impulse is going to be.

The pond for the Bumper Boats is long gone and leveled.

The pond for the Bumper Boats is long gone and leveled.

The only thing present are a bunch of these survey stakes.

The only thing present are a bunch of these survey stakes.

Boat Tag is long gone as well. Here's a history tidbit, it used to be at Dorney back in the early 90s near where Hydra is today.

Boat Tag is long gone as well. Here’s a history tidbit, it used to be at Dorney back in the early 90s near where Hydra is today.

Here's a panorama of the construction site.

Here’s a panorama of the construction site.

As much as it looks like the off-season at the park, there is still a month left. It must be the changing of the leaves on the trees.

As much as it looks like the off-season at the park, there is still a month left. It must be the changing of the leaves on the trees.

The Whip is receiving some TLC during it's week off (the park is closed this-coming weekend, by the way).

The Whip is receiving some TLC during it’s week off (the park is closed this-coming weekend, by the way).

I have a feeling that Impulse is really going to fit in nicely in this part of the park.

I have a feeling that Impulse is really going to fit in nicely in this part of the park.

Thanks for reading!
-Chris