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Thrill Ride: Bumper Cars

Link - article by Simon Rose and Avi Abrams

"Directing a film... can be like trying to write War and Peace in a bumper car in an amusement park" --Stanley Kubrick

Most of us have experienced bumper cars at least once at an amusement park. These things have been around for quite a while, providing exciting, yet simultaneously somewhat tame, entertainment, as we crash into other vehicles racing around the track.

(images credit: MR38, Lund Park, Sweden 1960)

Here are some of the vintage bumper car rides (also called "Dodge'ems"): on the left is Glen Echo Amusement Park in 1924; right image shows Electric Custer Cutie bumper car conversion from 1927:

(images credit: Shorpy.com, The Old Motor)

A good time was usually had by all back then. Of course, there might have been some people who dreamed of taking their bumper car on the open road, like this lady, for example:

(images credit: Shorpy.com, John Straub)

Well, today it’s no longer a dream. Here’s a look at some weird and wonderful adapted bumper cars here at Dark Roasted Blend. You can also check out the story of Tom Wright from San Diego, California who’s converted some amusement park bumper cars dating from the 1930s to 1950s and added motorcycle engines:

(images credit: MR38)

The car on the left (see image above) probably won’t break any speed records, but the flames might let you feel as though you’re in a hot looking vehicle... and hopefully the driver of this orange bumper car (right image) isn’t taking his or her license plate seriously if they get out on the road?

This one on the left even declares itself to be a hot idea:

(images credit: 1, 2)

There’s certainly not much on the dashboard in a bumper car, even a modified version, but this one at least appears to have a music system (right image above).

If you did manage to pick up sufficient or excess speed, you can probably rest assured that this police version of the bumper car could keep up with you:

(images credit: Stcone, MR38)

This one on the left is based on a vehicle design from the 1930s (Lusse Rodster from 1936)... also featuring "Ihle Auto-Scooter Alfa Romeo" and "Gebrüder Ihle Auto-Scooter 1958 Chevrolet Corvette" on the right:

(images credit: Stcone)

This vehicle has more substantial bodywork than a lot of the other designs. Maybe it would be a little safer to take out on the road? -

(images via)

Here we can get a better look at the chassis and suspension of these adapted vehicles:

(image credit: Lone Star Racing)

Here are some more vintage bumper cars, maybe just waiting to be turned into mini hot rods:

(images credit: left Christina Kapaun; right - ad from Illustrated magazine, March, 1956, via)

And how cool is this? This unique vintage bumper car (see below) has been modified for race games on Xbox 360. It apparently even shakes and vibrates if you accidentally hit the rim of the track:

(image via)

If you’d rather play it safe and stay off the roads, here’s a Ferrari bumper car on the left. Not sure of this vehicle’s top speed at the amusement park though (left image below)... And finally, on the right image below, if you’re now truly inspired to design your very own bumper car based vehicle, how about this very intriguing adaptation – a bumper car married to a motorcycle?

(images via 1, David Van Mill)

"Bumping Ladies Prohibited"?.. Gotta be extra-careful, then.

(image via)

Article by Simon Rose and Avi Abrams, Dark Roasted Blend.

Continue to "Fantastic Amusement Parks from History"! ->

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Blogger Unknown said...

One of the last pics got me thinking of marrying a bumper car with a riding lawnmower....


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