Home      Discussion      Topics      Dictionary      Almanac
Signup       Login
Tilt-A-Whirl

Tilt-A-Whirl

Discussion
Ask a question about 'Tilt-A-Whirl'
Start a new discussion about 'Tilt-A-Whirl'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Encyclopedia
Tilt-A-Whirl is one of the best-known flat rides, designed for commercial use at amusement park
Amusement park
thumb|Cinderella Castle in [[Magic Kingdom]], [[Disney World]]Amusement and theme parks are terms for a group of entertainment attractions and rides and other events in a location for the enjoyment of large numbers of people...

s, fair
Fair
A fair or fayre is a gathering of people to display or trade produce or other goods, to parade or display animals and often to enjoy associated carnival or funfair entertainment. It is normally of the essence of a fair that it is temporary; some last only an afternoon while others may ten weeks. ...

s and carnival
Carnival
Carnaval is a festive season which occurs immediately before Lent; the main events are usually during February. Carnaval typically involves a public celebration or parade combining some elements of a circus, mask and public street party...

s in which it is commonly found. The rides are manufactured by Sellner Manufacturing
Sellner Manufacturing
Sellner Manufacturing is the Faribault, Minnesota manufacturer of the Tilt-A-Whirl and other amusement park rides. Started by Herbert Sellner in 1926 and still family owned.-History:Herbert Sellner made lamps, toys and library tables...

 of Faribault, Minnesota
Faribault, Minnesota
As of the census of 2000, there were 20,818 people, 7,472 households, and 4,946 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,644.8 people per square mile . There were 7,668 housing units at an average density of 605.8 per square mile...

. The ride is commonly known for making riders experience nausea.

The Tilt-a-Whirl is a platform-type ride, consisting of seven freely-spinning cars that hold four (sometimes three) riders each, which are attached at fixed pivot points on a rotating platform. As the platform revolves, parts of the platform are raised and lowered, and the resulting centrifugal and gravitational forces on the cars cause them to spin in different directions and at variable speeds. The weight of passengers in these cars may intensify or dampen the spinning motion of the cars, adding to the unpredictable nature of the motion. Mathematicians call this unpredictable nature chaotic motion
Chaos theory
Chaos theory is a field of study in mathematics, with applications in several disciplines including physics, economics, biology, and philosophy. Chaos theory studies the behavior of dynamical systems that are highly sensitive to initial conditions, an effect which is popularly referred to as the...

.

Physicists Bret M. Huggard and Richard L. Kautz came up with a mathematical equation that approximates the motion of the Tilt-A-Whirl. Although it was without knowledge of chaos theory
Chaos theory
Chaos theory is a field of study in mathematics, with applications in several disciplines including physics, economics, biology, and philosophy. Chaos theory studies the behavior of dynamical systems that are highly sensitive to initial conditions, an effect which is popularly referred to as the...

 that Herbert Sellner invented the ride, in his patent text he clearly demonstrates an appreciation of chaos -- "A further object is to provide amusement apparatus wherein the riders will be moved in general through an orbit and will unexpectedly swing, snap from side to side or rotate without in any way being able to figure what movement may next take place in the car."

History


Herbert Sellner, a woodworker and maker of water slide
Water slide
A water slide is a type of slide designed for warm-weather or indoor recreational use at water parks. Water slides differ in their riding method and therefore size...

s, invented the Tilt-A-Whirl in 1926, at his Faribault, Minnesota
Faribault, Minnesota
As of the census of 2000, there were 20,818 people, 7,472 households, and 4,946 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,644.8 people per square mile . There were 7,668 housing units at an average density of 605.8 per square mile...

, home. Over the next year, the first 14 Tilt-A-Whirls were built in Herbert's basement and yard. In 1927, Sellner Manufacturing opened its factory in Faribault, and the ride debuted that year at the Minnesota State Fair
Minnesota State Fair
The Minnesota State Fair is the state fair of the U.S. state of Minnesota. Its slogan is "The Great Minnesota Get-Together." It is the 2nd largest fair in the United States, and the largest state fair in the United States in terms of average daily attendance, though the State Fair of Texas runs...

.

Family legend states that Herbert experimented with a chair placed on the kitchen table. Herbert's son Art sat in the chair, and Herbert rocked the table back and forth.

The earliest Tilt-A-Whirls were constructed of wood
Wood
Wood is a hard, fibrous tissue found in many trees. It has been used for hundreds of thousands of years for both fuel and as a construction material. It is an organic material, a natural composite of cellulose fibers embedded in a matrix of lignin which resists compression...

, powered by a gas motor
Internal combustion engine
The internal combustion engine is an engine in which the combustion of a fuel occurs with an oxidizer in a combustion chamber. In an internal combustion engine, the expansion of the high-temperature and high -pressure gases produced by combustion apply direct force to some component of the engine...

, and featured nine cars. Today, the ride is constructed of steel
Steel
Steel is an alloy that consists mostly of iron and has a carbon content between 0.2% and 2.1% by weight, depending on the grade. Carbon is the most common alloying material for iron, but various other alloying elements are used, such as manganese, chromium, vanadium, and tungsten...

, aluminum and fiberglass
Fiberglass
Glass fiber is a material consisting of numerous extremely fine fibers of glass.Glassmakers throughout history have experimented with glass fibers, but mass manufacture of glass fiber was only made possible with the invention of finer machine tooling...

, is powered by seven small electric motor
Electric motor
An electric motor converts electrical energy into mechanical energy.Most electric motors operate through the interaction of magnetic fields and current-carrying conductors to generate force...

s, and features seven cars.

Tilt-A-Whirls today


Since 1927, Sellner has manufactured more than 1000 Tilt-A-Whirls. Some of the rides produced in the 1940s and 1950s are still in operation. The rides were originally designed and built at the factory in Faribault, Minnesota. In January 2011 the company was purchased by Larson International, Inc. of Plainview, Texas.

A new Tilt-A-Whirl costs approximately USD $300,000 to purchase.

The oldest currently operating Tilt-A-Whirl is a 1927 model, still traveling with Tom Evans United Shows in the midwest. Between 600 and 700 Tilt-A-Whirls are still in operation.

Conneaut Lake Park
Conneaut Lake Park
Conneaut Lake Park is a summer amusement resort, located in Conneaut Lake, Pennsylvania, USA. It has long served as a regional tourist destination, and is loved by roller coaster enthusiasts for its classic Blue Streak coaster, which was recently classified as "historic" by the group American...

 in Conneaut Lake, Pennsylvania
Conneaut Lake, Pennsylvania
Conneaut Lake is a borough in Crawford County, Pennsylvania at the southern end of a lake with the same name. The population was 708 at the 2000 census.-History:...

still has its original Tilt-A-Whirl from 1949.

Further reading


External links