Figure 8 (Seabreeze Amusement Park)

Figure 8
Figure 8 Seabreeze.png
Seabreeze Amusement Park
Location Rochester, New York, USA
Status Defunct
Operated 1903 to 1915
Cost $20,000.00 USD
Replaced by Wildcat, Jack Rabbit
Statistics
Manufacturer Ingersoll Construction Company
Product Figure Eight
Designer / calculations Irwin Vittell
Type Wooden - Side Friction
Track layout
Height ~ 41 feet
Drop ~ 8 feet
Top speed 12 mph
HELP

The Figure 8 was a side friction figure of 8 roller coaster at Seabreeze Amusement Park that was constructed in 1903 by Frank Ingersoll of the Ingersoll Construction Company (Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, USA). The roller coaster was designed by John A. Miller.[1][2]

History

Figure 8 was opened in 1903 to great fanfare at Seabreeze Park.[1][2] The side friction roller coaster was considered large for its day. and would be the first permanent attraction for the park It was noted for its fine construction, attention to detail, and fine craftsmanship not just for the track, but the cars as well.[1] Only specialized skilled craftsman were permitted to work on the roller coaster both during its construction and its operation.[1] Figure 8 ran until its closure in 1915 to make way for more advancements within the park.[2]

Electricity

In 1903, alongside the opening of Figure 8, the Rochester & Suburban Railway Company electrified the trolley tracks that lead to the park. Despite this, the actual supply of municipal or private electricity was not yet available to the majority of properties in the area. Rides such as Figure 8 featured steam powered engines to power the lift hills and other ride mechanisms of the varying attractions throughout the park.[2]

Design

Construction

Figure 8 was constructed in the shape of the number 8. The track traversed the shape multiple times, each one descending to a level below the other until reaching ground level and then returning to the loading station. The supports and track pieces were constructed of longleaf heart Georgia pine timber.[1][2]

Other Structures

The station of Figure 8 was located within a pavilion built to accommodate the loading platform, manager's office, and seating for 500 guests to take respite and gather during their time at the park. Not too far from the pavilion, sitting beneath one of the coaster tressels, was the car storage building and maintenance area.[1]

Elements

Trains

4 trains with 1 cars per train. [1]

Car Design

Each car was painted in a cream and maroon color scheme. They featured leather upholstery seating. Electric lights were installed on the car and powered by the motion of the vehicle along the track for a night time spectacle. The four cars were each individually named after what were known as "Summer Girls", later known as pinup girls, or summer models (women who model swimwear and summertime fashion). [1][2]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 "New Roller Coaster: One at Sea Breeze Park Rivals Birds". Democrat & Chronicle (Rochester, NY). https://www.newspapers.com/clip/66295909/new-roller-coaster-opens-at-seabreeze/. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Futrell, Jim (2018). Seabreeze Park. Images of America. Foreword by John Norris. USA: Arcadia Publishing. pp. 9, 11, 18, 19, 21. ISBN 978-1-4671-2937-4. LCCN 2018930640.