FC Fabbri Group, A Manufacturer Profile
We get asked quite often where funfair rides come from. Everyone seems to think they are homemade, and to be truthful, there are a lot of children’s rides on the circuit that have been. In fact some of the most successful ride manufacturers started life this way.
For the bigger stuff though, this is beyond their scope. Thrill rides are becoming higher, faster, more daring. The engineering required for this is beyond the DIY market.
Over time a number of high tech, highly regarded companies have developed to design and build these types of rides. Sadly little of this industry remains UK based. The major players being Italian, Dutch, German and Spanish.
Over the course of the year we are going to take a look at the major players, and some of the now defunct former giants of the industry.
An Italian Entrant
The first of our spotlights falls upon FC Fabbri Group. Founded by Romolo Fabbri in Bergantino, an Italian village in 1950. The village actually became the home of a number of Italian ride producers after World War II.
The initial ride was the Avio, an aviation based ride that allowed the riders to fly their little aeroplanes up, as they rotated around the ride.
This eventually evolved into the popular Telecombat. An aerial ride that allowed the planes to rotate and face backwards towards the following car. You could then fire your guns and ‘shoot’ the opponent down. Not literally of course, what happened was the ride controls would drop his plane back down to ground level.
A New Direction
As the 1970’s rolled around, Romolo’s son, Licinio took over, and expanded sales beyond their traditional home market and into the rest of Europe and the Middle East. By this time they were producing a number of rides, including the Tagada, Kamikaze and crazy Dance to complement their Telecombats.
This expansion continued, and in the 90’s they founded FC Fabbri Park Srl, to spread the company into the world market.
By 1998 they had launched their first roller coaster. The Wacky Worm type ride
As of 2019, the group has built 24 roller coasters around the world ranging from the original Wacky Worm type through to the newer Spinning Mouse coasters.
Of late the company has found success with pendulum type thrill rides such as the booster, selling over 50 of these since 2000. This is loosely based on an old type of ride called the dive bomber, only much higher and faster. Other companies produce similar rides such as the KMG Speed and Zamperla Turbo Force.
FC Fabbri Group Giant Wheel Division
In 2002, the giant wheel division was founded with the manufacture of their first wheel over 40 metres in height.
They now possess the capability to produce wheels upto 100M in diameter, and pro actively seek out sites suitable for erecting wheels. Their engineering prowess make them the only European company to have installed a giant wheel on top of a large building.
The Fabbri Group have the design and production capabilities to undertake unique and one off commissions taking their funfair rides in a totally new direction. These include an aerial restaurant and a monorail system.
From the humble beginnings of the Fabbri Group with the Avio, the company now encompasses a complete range of attractions from Children’s rides through to the largest of travelling giant wheels. It sells its products throughout the globe and is definitely an Italian success story.