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Orbiter (formerly known as Sol Loco) is a HUSS SkyLab at Canada's Wonderland in Ontario, Canada. The ride opened in 1981 for the park's first operating season. The ride closed in 2006 and was partially dismantled but was re-built and re-opened later that season following the sale of Paramount's amusement park chain to Cedar Fair.
When Orbiter first opened in 1981, it was named Sol Loco and featured a Mexican theme. In 2002, the ride's name was changed to what it is known as today, Orbiter. After 25 years in operation, Orbiter was closed during the 2006 operating season. The ride had been removed from the park map and was surrounded by signs stating "Please excuse our appearance as we are preparing for your future enjoyment". During this closure period, several parts of the ride were dismantled including the ride carriages. This led many people to wonder if the ride would be demolished completely. That same year, it was announced that Cedar Fair would buy all Paramount Parks. Later on in the season, the ride began to be re-assembled and was re-opened to the public.
The ride is made up of 4 main parts. The first part is the yellow main arm which supports the main structure whether it is in operation or not. The second part is the centre red "wheel" which is attached to the "arm". The wheel supports the structure of the ride. The third part is the white metal frame that supports the 15 gondolas where riders are positions. The fourth and final parts are the gondolas themselves. These are multiple colours and swing freely.
Ride experience Edit
Riders take a seat in one of the 15 gondolas. There is restraint system on the ride, however while the ride is in operation centrifugal force keeps riders pinned to their seats. Once the ride attendents give the all clear, the ride begins to rotate and pick up speed. It can take about 20 to 25 seconds for the ride to reach its top speed and lift off of the ground. After the ride lifts off the ground, the ride keeps rising eventually coming to an almost vertical position (87º). A few seconds later, the ride begins to descend back to the ground. The rides braking system is activated and the ride comes to a complete stop by the time it reaches the ground. One ride cycle is about 1 minute and 53 seconds.