Chance Rides, A Manufacturer Profile

Chance Rides, A Manufacturer Profile

14th July 2021 0 By jarm69

Our look today is at one of the larger ride manufacturers on the States. Currently producing a range of amusement rides, roller coasters, people movers and giant wheels. Chance Rides operate from a 40 acre site with around 310,000 sq ft of buildings in Wichita Kansas. The area is regarded as the aviation capital of the world, and provides a large pool of highly skilled workers, along with many specialised manufacturers.

The C.P. Huntington Train

The original C.P. Huntington was a locomotive purchased by the Central Pacific railway, the third of their loco’s in 1863. When it was sold to the Southern Pacific railway company it was named in honour of Collis P. Huntington, their third President.

The Original C.P.Huntington
The Original C.P.Huntington

Richard Harold Chance, who had originally been building small trains for the Ottaway Amusement Company since 1946, designed a 2ft guage replica of the Locomotive. In 1960 he began to build these using petrol, diesel, propane or electric engines for sale to amusement parks, zoo’s and similar.

The very first one was delivered to the Joyland Amusement Park in Wichita. Replacing their original miniature train that had operated since 1933. It has been the most popular park train model since The Allan Herschell Company merged with Chance closing down the production line for their Iron Horse train. The company has built over 400 trains and coaches for customers around the globe. With prices running upwards of $200,000 for an engine and $60k or so for a coach.

A Modern Chance Locomotive Replica
A Modern Chance Locomotive Replica

Chance Carrousels

Chance Manufacturing was incorporated in 1961 and by 1971. They launched their first carrousel (deliberately spelt that way by Chance) after they had acquired the Allan Herschell Co. At that time the largest Amusement ride manufacturer in the States. Their designs were modified to a more ornate decorative style. The company then acquired Bradley & Kaye in 1986, another carousel manufacturer to acquire their stock of molds. David Bradley had reproduced many of the historic carousel figures in fibreglass and had over 60 molds for them. When the D.H.Morgan carousel company was merged into the group it added even more unique figures for the company to use.

This wide range of ornate, highly detailed animals has become something of a trademark on Chance built carousels.

Chance Carousel Horse
Chance Carousel Horse

D.H. Morgan Acquisition

When Chance acquired Morgan, and formed Chance Morgan, they didn’t just get access to the companies line of carousel figures. But also its roller coaster manufacturing line up.

They had built coasters as early as 1969, producing the Walter House designed Toboggan. A portable ride where a train climbed up a vertical tower before spiralling back down the outside. They built 32 of these and also introduced a children’s big dipper coaster.

The integration of the D.H. Morgan line took their ability to design coasters to a new level. With their own track manufacturing technology and the ability to offer a range of designs.

Chance Morgan Coaster
Chance Morgan Coaster

Ferris Wheels

1967 saw the first Ferris wheel from Chance, debuting at the Iowa State fair. Carrying 32 passengers in 16 cars. Their first park model was an 8-ft Giant Wheel for an amusement park in Minnesota. A tie up with Ronald Bussink, of Switzerland and Dutch Wheels BV, part of the Vekoma rides organisation saw the combine building observation wheels. Giant wheels that place the riders in cabins or pobs rather than seats. They acquired the rights from Bussink Design GmbH to build and sell the R80XL 76metre wheel in North America.

R80XL Wheel
R80XL Wheel

Sources;

Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chance_Rides

Chance Rides https://www.chancerides.com/

Chance Morgan https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chance_Morgan

Summary
Chance Rides, A Manufacturer Profile
Article Name
Chance Rides, A Manufacturer Profile
Description
A look at another of the major amusement ride manufacturers. This time it is the turn of CHance Rides in the States.
Jason A.R. Moody
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