Diving Coaster Vanish! The history behind a famous social media picture.

Diving Coaster Vanish at night (1)

Vanish, a word that describes the act of disappearing, seemingly into thin air.  In Japan, it is a brilliant spell in Final Fantasy 6, part of a game-breaking combo.  For our article, Vanish is not what one renowned picture on social media has been doing.  That picture is the one of a roller coaster train dropping into a tunnel underwater.  It was not the first roller coaster to do so, but it is the most seen online.

Intimidator 305 Anaconda Kings Dominion.JPG

You can see the Anaconda with red track on the bottom of the picture.  The drop into the water can be seen on the right side and that ride opened in 1991.

That roller coaster is Diving Coaster Vanish!  Contrary to what the name suggests, it is not a Bolliger & Mabillard Dive Coaster; it is a sit-down roller coaster from a sizeable Japanese ride manufacturer named Senyo Kogyo Co., LTD.  In addition to building attractions, this Osaka company has been developing and operating amusement parks as well as Ferris Wheels around Japan.  Vanish! has pink track and its signature element is a steep curving drop into the water.

Colombia Double Loop Coaster Seoul Land Flex

Flex provided us with this picture of the Colombia Double Loop Coaster, a 1988 Senyo Kogyo roller coaster with the old track style.

A part of the Yokohama Exotic Showcase 89 was the Cosmo world Children Republic, and it featured the world’s tallest Ferris wheel at the time, Cosmo Clock 21,  It had a record-breaking height of 353 feet at the time.  The ride and smaller attractions around it remained operational after the expo.  Due to the building of Queen’s Square Yokohama, Senyo dismantled the Cosmo Clock 21 and put it in storage in 1997. It was moved to its present location across the river on an island as a part of Minato Mirai 21 new development. To make it even more impressive, it was set-up by Senyo on a taller perch and now stood 369 feet tall.  The Wheel and the surrounding rides reopened in 1999 and are currently called Yokohama Cosmoworld.

Cosmo World Flex

Flex took this dramatic photo of the Minato Mirai 21 area. To give you an idea of the Cosmo Clock 21 original location, the three large skyscrapers on the left replaced it in 1997.

Cosmo World Clock 21 Flex.jpg

Flex shot this great photo of Cosmo Clock 21 with Diving Coaster: Vanish! in front.

For the new location in Minato Mirai 21 15th ward, two roller coasters were planned: a Reverchon Spinning Coaster and a custom designed roller coaster from Senyo Kogyo.  The Reverchon Spinning Coaster may appear to be a weird choice, but it served two purposes:

  • Senyo Kogyo represented Reverchon in Japan, and such a prominent location was a great showcase.
  • Its location on a building, and at the time, it was one of few roller coasters available to have that option.

The other roller coaster is the major one;  Senyo Kogyo used a new roller coaster model that they premiered in 1997.  Earlier large Senyo coasters used inside wheel bogies and a track similar to the one Arrow had debuted back in 1959.  For Delphis The Coaster at FestivalGate (Osaka) and Eagle Coaster/Highway Coaster at Japan Monkey Park (Inuyama, Japan), the track went to inside cross-ties.  That evolution allowed smoother and tighter layouts and combined with new wheel bogies, was a massive improvement over earlier designs.  Traditionally, large roller coasters in Japan use over the shoulder bars, and that is what Senyo Kogyo went with in regards to their new model.

FestivalGate_front.JPG

We discovered this amazing picture shot by user Mangos on the japanese wikipedia page of FestivalGate.  Festival Gate Japanese Wikipedia Page

FestivalGate_inside1

On the same Wikipedia page, there is also this very rare photo of Delphis The Coaster.

Diving Coaster Vanish! design is quite brilliant in regards to its land use.  The final brake run is under the lift hill, and the layout goes around the plot of land.  Senyo Kogyo on their products page has a great drawing of the design.  http://www.senyo.co.jp/products/1310/.

Diving Coaster Vanish at night (4).JPG

A look at the lift hill and pre signature drop curve of Diving Coaster Vanish!  As you can see, the chaser lights at night are quite spectacular.

The ride station is behind Cosmo Clock 21, and after leaving it, the train turns toward the 114 feet tall lift hill.  Once at the top, it smoothly disengages and turns to the right, diving quite close to Cosmo Clock 21.  It then rises in another rising turn and dips again, now going to the side of the Wheel.  The next drop is the signature element:  the plunge into the water.

Diving Coaster Vanish Flex 3

The ride entrance sign.  Notice the exclamation point after Vanish and that is what we consider the ride english name to consist of.

It is quite steep and curves on the way down.  Once it approaches the water, a sensor detects it, and water sprouts spray water around the hole.  The pool that the ride dives in has a dual purpose as well:  it is one of the splashdown pool of the Cliff Drop log flume.  Once underwater, riders experience a tunnel covered in whirly lights and turn to the left.

Diving Coaster Vanish Flex 2

Another view of the signature drop from Flex.

Diving Coaster Vanish Flex Splash

The Splash from Flex.

Riders pop-out of the tunnel behind the Spinning Coaster under Cliff Drop and experience a delightful straight dip, one of the few segment of straight track on this twisting coaster.  In typical Japanese coaster fashion, a fast 540 degrees helix concludes the ride.

Diving Coaster Vanish Flex 6

The small dip behind the Spinning Coaster, perched on its building.  This photo appears courtesy of Flex.

Diving Coaster Vanish at night (2)

The ride dramatic final helix.  We apologise about the blurriness of the photo, but the chaser lights and moving track make it quite difficult to shoot at night.

Diving Coaster Vanish at night (3).JPG

The train entering the brakes under the lift hill.

In conclusion, we hope you learned more about this unique roller coaster that has been by so many, yet has little information in English online.  If you ever travel to Japan, we suggest taking the train down to Yokohama and experiencing it for yourself.

 

 

One thought on “Diving Coaster Vanish! The history behind a famous social media picture.

  1. I was impressed by Anaconda at King Dominion in the ’90. Vanish! Seem more attractive with special effects. It will be on my list to see it in real.

    Like

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