The Enterprise is an amusement ride, manufactured primarily by HUSS Park Attractions and Anton Schwarzkopf beginning in 1972. The ride was an adaptation and improvement of a design produced earlier that year by Schwarzkopf, with an increased passenger capacity. Despite not owning the original incarnation of the ride, HUSS was issued the patent.
The ride is named after USS Enterprise from the TV series Star Trek. The backdrop is decorated with space-themed art and a silhouette of the starship Enterprise.
Enterprises are manufactured by HUSS, Schwarzkopf, and Heinz Fähtz; all sharing the name Enterprise. Both trailer and park versions have been created and in use.
Design and operation
In the ride, up to two people sit in one of 20 gondolas arranged in a circle, one in front of the other. The ride moves clockwise, dispelling a slight amount of centrifugal force. A hydraulically powered arm underneath the ride then raises and tilts the frame so that the ride is rotating at 87° from the horizontal, transforming the ride from a horizontal experience to a nearly vertical one.
On most Enterprise models, there are no safety restraints; the force applied to the riders is sufficient to keep them pinned in their seats. However, some models have been fitted with seat belts. Most parks and carnivals require riders to be at least 48 inches tall, though it is not uncommon to see restrictions as much as 54 inches or more. The transportable version of the ride racks onto two trailers, the first carrying the wheel, arm, and drive systems while the second is loaded with the gondolas, platforms, and any additional equipment. The first trailer also acts as the base of the ride while in operation.
In the early 1980s HUSS produced a larger version of the Enterprise called the SkyLab. It features fifteen to twenty four-seater gondolas (up to four riders per seat) and had a diameter of approximately 60 feet or greater. Most SkyLabs have been dismantled, however there are three known models still operating, Orbiter at Canada's Wonderland in Vaughan, Ontario, Canada, Cyclone at Parque Del Café in Montenegro, Quindio, Colombia, and Sky Loop at Luna Park in Tel Aviv, Israel.
HUSS used the basis of the Enterprise for another ride called the UFO. This ride was similar in operation, however the cars did not swing freely and riders stood up facing the center of the ride. Similarly to most Enterprise rides, there are no restraints due to the centrifugal force experienced on the ride. This ride is no longer in production.
HUSS also used the design of the Enterprise for a newer attraction called Fly Away. In this version, riders lay on their stomachs to simulate the feeling of flying. This version also has the capability to spin riders forwards or backwards.
The Schwarzkopf versions of the Enterprise have either 16 or 21 gondolas, thus having a different diameter of the wheel. The gondolas are also smaller than the HUSS version. Originally, the gondolas were produced in-house; they were later replaced by gondolas manufactured separately by Reverchon.
Heinz Fähtz manufactured some 16-gondola Enterprises. The only known operating park model is at Darien Lake, installed in 1981. Another portable ride is traveled in New Zealand by Mahons Amusements, loading on 2 trailers complete with backflash.Note: The Schwarzkopf Park Model versions of the ride are indicated with "(SDC)" following the park or operator name. The Heinz Fähtz Enterprise is marked "(HF)".Argentina – At least two; Enterprise I at Parque de la Ciudad and Enterprise II (SDC) at Parque de la CiudadAustralia – At least four; The Enterprise at Luna Park Melbourne, Reef Diver at Dreamworld (Meshio), one traveling model and a fourth is under refurbishment, location unknown.Canada – At least four; Enterprise at Playland, The STORM, at Calaway Park, and several portable models, at least one Skylab, The Orbiter at Canada's WonderlandColombia – At least one; Cyclone at Parque Nacional del CaféDenmark – At least two; Enterprise at Bakken (disassembled and is to be renovated and sold) and 'Solhjulet' at Sommerland SydEgypt – One in Dream Park; largest amusement park in Egypt and the Middle EastEstonia – At least one; a traveling model owned by Tivoli Tuur. Got into fire in 2007; 41 were injured.Finland – At least two; Enterprise at Tykkimäki amusement park and Kehrä (SDC) at Linnanmäki amusement park (from 2009).Germany – One travelling Enterprise; Mondlift owned by Zehle., plus a few stationary Enterprises in different amusement parks – all manufactured by Huss.Italy - Enterprise Famiglia bellucci "Puglia" (HUSS) ... (Trailer Mode) Year 2014India − At least five; three at Mumbai (2 at Six Flags, 1 at Play Land), 1 in New Delhi at Essel World and 1 at Hydrabad at Musky MountainIsrael – Sky Lab at Luna Park in Tel Aviv (this is the only mobile built ride that had travelled in Germany in 1979–1990)Netherlands – At least four; Enterprice (SDC) at Attractiepark Slagharen, G-Force at Walibi Holland, Kwal at Drievliet and Tarantula Magica at Avonturenpark Hellendoorn.New Zealand – One traveling; Enterprise at Mahons Amusements (HF)Poland - One; Enterprise (HUSS) at Śląskie Wesołe Miasteczko, Chorzów.Spain – At least one; La Turbina (SDC) at Parque de Atracciones, Madrid.United Kingdom At least five; Enterprise at Dreamland Margate, Black Widow's Web at Lightwater Valley, Zodiac at Thorpe Park, Enterprise at Alton Towers, Alakazam (fly-away variation) at Pleasure Island, Cleethorpes and a traveling Enterprise owned by Funfair Props.United States of America – At least nineteen; Endeavor at Trimper's Rides; Centennial Screamer at Lagoon Amusement Park; Enterprise at Casino Pier, Dorney Park, Kentucky Kingdom, the Strates Shows traveling railway carnival, and Murphy Bros. Exposition; Flyin' Tiger at Blue Bayou and Dixie Landin'; Highland Fling (SDC) at Six Flags St. Louis; The Orbit (SDC) at California's Great America; Scream Weaver at Carowinds; Silver Bullet at Darien Lake (HF); Vertigo at Alabama Adventure; Volcano (formerly Enterprise) at Kennywood; Witches' Wheel at Cedar Point; and Zulu at Worlds of Fun.
The following Enterprise rides at the following amusement parks are now defunct.Note: The Schwarzkopf Park Model versions of the ride are indicated with "(SDC)" following the park or operator name.Apple Turnover (SDC) at Kings Dominion (1976–1991)Cyclops at HersheyparkEnterprise at Camden Park (closed in 1993)Enterprise at Loudon Castle, Scotland (?–2010), closed when the park went defunctEnterprise at Rocky Point Amusement Park (Closed in 1995)Enterprise at Lake Compounce (1986-2015)Enterprise (Huss Portable Model) at Six Flags Great Adventure (1975–1977)Enterprise (Huss Portable Model) at Tusenfryd (1988–2006). Moved to Lindströms Tivoli in Sweden (2006), and to a Swedish showman, Håkan Skogh (2006–2009). From 2010 owner Troost-Spel in the Netherlands attraction.Enterprise at Wasalandia (1988–1996)Enterprise at Mariner's Landing, Wildwood, NJ (1977-1999)Enterprise at Valleyfair (closed in 2016)Loop Trainer Flying Machine (SDC) at Knott's Berry Farm (1976–1989)Nightwing at Six Flags New England (closed in 2008)Orbit (SDC) at Six Flags Great America (closed in 2016)Reactor at Six Flags Magic Mountain (1977–1993) (originally named Enterprise from 1977 to 1987)Rodeo Round-Up at Frontier City (closed in 2015)Silver Bullet at Geauga Lake (1976–2004) (originally named Enterprise from 1976 to 1996)Skylab at Great Escape (closed in 2001)Skylab at Kings Island (1986–1997)Spin Meister (SDC) at Six Flags Great Adventure (1979–2005) (originally named Enterprise from 1975 to 1978)Wagon Wheel (SDC) at Six Flags Fiesta Texas (1996–2011) (originally at Six Flags Over Texas from 1977 to 1995 as Spinnaker)Wheelie (SDC) at Six Flags Over Georgia (1977–2012), removed and closed to make way for SkyScreamer. Moving to Fun Action Park in Orlando, Florida for 2013.October 17, 1983 – An eighteen-year-old boy was killed and several bystanders were injured at the Texas State Fair when a gondola fell off the ride.1993 - More than fifty people were injured following a hydraulic malfunction at Camden Park (amusement park) in Huntington, West Virginia.September 22, 2001 – Two teenagers sustained minor injuries when one support on a gondola broke on Zodiac at Thorpe Park, UK. The gondola repeatedly hit the decking at the bottom of the ride whilst the operator attempted to stop the ride. The incident was taken to court, where the judge criticised the length of time it took to shut down the ride after an abnormal noise had been noticed. The park was fined £65,000 and made to pay an extra £35,000 in costs.May 18, 2007 – An Estonian Enterprise owned by Tivoli Tuur and operating at a carnival in Rakvere caught fire. It was in motion, with riders aboard, when the fire suddenly ignited at approximately 11:00 p.m. It was stopped and evacuated, but not before injuries were sustained by the riders. 31 patients were hospitalized with first and second degree burns, with an additional 10 admitted and checked for possible smoke inhalation. Six burn victims required further treatment, with all six released from the hospital by May 23. The fire damaged the ride's electrical systems and five of the twenty gondolas. Preliminary investigations found no evidence to conclusively conclude what had caused the incident, but the owner suggested it might have been arson.