SCHWARZKOPF SHUTTLE LOOP
The Schwarzkopf shuttle loop used a weight-drop to power its catapult launch system. One of the most famous Shuttle Loops was Thunder Looper at Alton Towers in the UK. These are one of the most common examples of inverting coasters that operate with lap bars only.
More “recent” versions of Schwarzkopf shuttle loops used a flywheel to power its launch instead of a weight-drop.
VEKOMA LSM CATAPULT COASTER
Using Linear Synchronous Motors (LSM), a catch car propels the train down the launch track. The catch car then detaches and the train is sent around the track. All current Vekoma LSM Catapult Coasters are clones – examples include Disney’s Rock ‘N’ Roller Coasters and Xpress at Walibi Holland.
See also: LSM Launched Coasters
ARROW SHUTTLE LOOP
Arrow‘s shuttle loop is very rare. It involves two raised platforms separated by a ground-level vertical loop. A raised station platform propels the train forward at a fairly slow speed. The train then travels down a hill, through a vertical loop, and up a hill, onto another flat launch section on the other side. The train is then stopped and catapulted backwards, repeating the circuit. An example is Revolution at Pleasure Beach Blackpool in the UK.
Zamperla offers a different take on the flywheel launch with their MotoCoasters. The trains for these coasters feature individual seating on 12 motorcycles or horses lines up in rows of two. Themed to a race with starting lights and a finish line, the compact layout features a series of sloping twists and turns without any big drops or inversions.
PAX LOOP 520
Russian manufacturer PAX designed the Loop 520, of which only one was ever built – Cobra at Conny-Land in Switzerland. Like the original Schwarzkopf models, these use a weight drop catch car to hoist the train up a spike out the rear of the station. The train is released and travels through a vertical loop and up a 520° “Scorpion Tail” an then do it all again backwards.
Cobra at Conny-Land, Switzerland