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  #1  
Old January 11th, 2015, 06:51 AM
bonnyprincecharlie bonnyprincecharlie is offline
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Default Is "The NorthStar" a thrilling ride or just a drone's view of Quantum

Quantum has the NorthStar, it is at the end of a long, extendable arm that can lift a dozen or more people as high as 300 feet above the surface of the ocean. enclosed "pods" designed to hold a dozen or more guests at once - all of them free to move around inside. What happens if pod breaks down? How do the customers get rescued? Does the pod go straight up or hangs over side of ship?
Is there a cruise member on the pod. What are photo opportunities from the pod.i.e. you can take aerial pictures of ship? Does pod operate while ship is in port? Is the wait long to get on the pod? Do you have to make reservations to get on pod? Does the pod operate at night?
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Old January 11th, 2015, 10:49 AM
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There is a crewmember in the pod as well as the operator at the base of the arm. In port they can operate it up and down but not over the sides. At sea they do swing out over the sides in addition to going all the way up to 300 feet above the waterline.

When it breaks down they have several methods to get the pod back to the unloading position, and I think they are progressive steps so if the first doesn't work they go to step 2 and so forth. Ultimately they can manually crank it down. It's actually been stuck several times already although it appears these instances are getting rarer. The ride is about 10 minutes or so, plenty of time to shoot videos and photos. They are not doing reservations for it, it is first come first served and the wait can be long. On my cruise, which ended this morning, they placed signs by the line with times such as "the wait is 90 minutes from this point in the line". Getting there before it opens in the morning is best.

I don't recall them doing it at night on our cruise, but they have done so on previous cruises. Weather can also impact it's operation. It was closed on 2 of the days of our cruise because of high winds.
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Old January 14th, 2015, 09:24 PM
bonnyprincecharlie bonnyprincecharlie is offline
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Default Great description of the NorthStar. Your description was thorough

How about the electric cars. Are the electric cars sort of like bumper cars and
that's the way they are used or is it just riding in circles.

How is the rollerskating going over. i liked the ice skating, but I could also understand how the ship owners saw the ice rinks as being an expensive pleasure that only a limited number of people would use.
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Old January 15th, 2015, 09:33 AM
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They are used like real bumper cars such as at an amusement park. Paul's car stalled and he was mercilessly pummeled by a man, who then told his son (in another car) to join in the attack. The ride is 3 to 5 minutes based on how many people are waiting to do it.

I didn't see roller skating. I'm not even sure they did it on our cruise. The flow rider was also closed for the entire cruise.
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Old January 16th, 2015, 06:20 AM
bonnyprincecharlie bonnyprincecharlie is offline
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Default Was Paul the target of an angry Forum contributor?

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They are used like real bumper cars such as at an amusement park. Paul's car stalled and he was mercilessly pummeled by a man, who then told his son (in another car) to join in the attack. The ride is 3 to 5 minutes based on how many people are waiting to do it.

I didn't see roller skating. I'm not even sure they did it on our cruise. The flow rider was also closed for the entire cruise.
Where were you when Paul was bumpered? Taking pictures? Did you get a chance to try out the ride that a person floats in a stream of air.
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Old January 16th, 2015, 11:06 AM
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I was not there during Paul's bumper car escapades. I can't do the iFly because of a chronic back issue, but I'm probably too heavy for it anyway. I think the limit for someone my height is 230 pounds. For 6' and over it is 250. They do weigh you before you go in it.
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Old January 17th, 2015, 07:13 AM
bonnyprincecharlie bonnyprincecharlie is offline
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Default How about the computerized bartender?

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I was not there during Paul's bumper car escapades. I can't do the iFly because of a chronic back issue, but I'm probably too heavy for it anyway. I think the limit for someone my height is 230 pounds. For 6' and over it is 250. They do weigh you before you go in it.
Very interesting. Did they ever get the robot bartender operating. Was it fast. Did it respond to voice orders or did an operator have to input commands?
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Old January 17th, 2015, 11:42 AM
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The Bionic Bar doesn't take verbal commands. All orders have to be input on a tablet. When operating the the average speed to make a drink is supposedly 30 to 60 seconds per robotic arm, depending on the drink and it has it's own menu and can't make everything.

It's an entertainment venue mostly, and not used as a normal bar. The arms collided with each other on our cruise and they had to close the bar for the last three days while they did troubleshooting and repairs. This experiment is a failure in my opinion. It is more trouble than it's worth, and frankly not that many people use it. Look for it to be gone at some point and replaced with something else.
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Old January 17th, 2015, 03:39 PM
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I wonder if they will donate the robot bartender to the Smithsonian or just dump it at sea one night. Somebody's head will roll for conceiving the robot bartender. Great reporting.
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Old January 21st, 2015, 01:14 PM
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Hi all...

I was in the bumper cars and sometimes they just stop, don't know why, but the trick is to go full throttle for about 5 seconds and they start moving again.

Ramming people is part of the fun, and one kids hit me when my car had stalled so I went after him when I was going again. I was then hit from behind by his dad.

It was all in good fun.

Dave - I recall the Northstar differently - we did not go over to sides while at sea, and when we asked I thought she said "we only do it in port" - but then when we were in port they had the car over the side, but no one was in it.

I've attached a pic of the pod empty but over the side while in Labadee. I never saw it over the side while at sea. Did you get info from someplace else?
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File Type: jpg northstar over Labadee.jpg (81.7 KB, 1 views)
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Old January 21st, 2015, 01:34 PM
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They are allowed to go over the sides at sea but not in ports, but in the gondola for our ride the operator said they might do it in Labadee since "we own the port", when you asked her. She said we couldn't do it on our ride because we were too close to docking time. Thus I now think they were testing going over the side when you saw the empty gondola, to see if there were any problems.

They can't go to the sides in regular ports for safety reasons - other ships moored too close, concerns about people on the pier underneath the North Star, etc. This is what I was told back in November when I asked the operator on the media cruise. He told me they actually had gone over the sides in Bayonne initially, but the port authority told them to stop doing it.
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Old January 21st, 2015, 01:45 PM
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Okay - you heard a lot more of the detail than I heard. I personally have never seen it go over the side with people inside, but I am not saying it can't be done.
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Old January 21st, 2015, 01:56 PM
bonnyprincecharlie bonnyprincecharlie is offline
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Default Paul, did you do iFly

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Okay - you heard a lot more of the detail than I heard. I personally have never seen it go over the side with people inside, but I am not saying it can't be done.
Did you do iFly?
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Old January 21st, 2015, 05:47 PM
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Here's a video of North Star going over the water while at sea. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gJgEUwKtxZ0
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Old January 21st, 2015, 06:22 PM
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I did the North Star on my Quantum cruise and we did go over the side.
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  #16  
Old January 26th, 2015, 10:11 AM
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My wife was on both the Northstar as well as the bumper cars and enjoyed both.
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