Greetings! Welcome to “Ask RideMan,” a new feature here at PointBuzz.
I'm Dave Althoff, known in the forums here, as you’re probably aware, as “RideMan”. I’ve been participating in the Cedar Point forums on this site almost since the beginning. I’ve been visiting Cedar Point longer than I can remember; I believe I’ve traced my first visit to 1972, and my parents took me to Cedar Point every summer.
I first became interested in amusement rides as machinery, as examples of engineering. For the past 20+ years, I’ve studied amusement rides formally and informally, and I have taken that study a little more seriously than I probably should: I’ve attended industry safety seminars, and actually passed a nationally accredited inspection test. More recently, I joined ASTM International and I am now an active participant on Committee F24 on Amusement Rides and Devices. Now, Walt and Jeff have asked me to produce this feature for PointBuzz. I’ve been answering questions on the forums for years, so this seems a pretty natural idea.
The concept is simple enough: if you have questions, I’ll try to answer them. In an effort to make this as productive and interesting as possible, I’d like to start by sharing some ideas and information. Not ‘ground rules’ per se, but rather some basic facts that might inform your questions.
So if you have a question you would like me to address, please send me a private message here on PointBuzz, or send an email to email@example.com. Let’s see how this goes. I’m already working on the first article, where we’ll take a look at some of the more interesting things being done in the park with very strong magnets.
Dave Althoff is a multimedia specialist, systems engineer and amusement industry consultant from Columbus, Ohio. Dave is a member of ASTM International and the National Association of Amusement Ride Safety Officials (NAARSO) and is an NAARSO Certified Amusement Ride Safety Inspector Level I (Basic). He has consulted on amusement ride design projects and ride operation controls and is listed as a co-inventor on United States Patent #7,905,789, “Specialized Restraint Systems for Amusement Rides.”