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 Review of Scooter @ Keansburg Amusement Park
1 Rating Posted by: adriahna on 8/23/2004 9:50:00 AM
Now, if Keansburg could understand what a treasure theyve got in their Lusse Skooters - and thus treat them kindly and respectfully - this could be a ride worthy of lofty status indeed. Gorgeous Lusses of distinguished model and vintage are everywhere...too bad that most of them are piled up in the corners, and - gasp - out in the open weather. We waited about 15 minutes to ride - the line was long, and only 5 cars were operating. This put a real damper on the Skooter experience - most of the time, I was looking for someone to bump. But the old Lusses, banged up and neglected as they were, still showed the old spirit, smacking all bejeezus out of whoever came their way. What was interesting here was the contrast between the older and newer Lusse models - the former with great, intimidating grills and art deco lines, the latter of smaller frame, and modest proportions. Theyre all from the same family, but the generational differences are enormous. In all, I just wish Keansburg had the vision (and money) to restore these beautiful Skooters to their rightful condition. They are great treasures, and deserve to be treated as such.
 

Review Comments

adriahna on 6/15/2006 6:24:51 PM said:
Yup, that sounds like a true Keansburg moment.
Scott on 6/15/2006 6:40:06 PM said:
The new Lusse models are terrible. I have been fortunate enough to ride some original lusse scooters.
The difference is huge. Bummer.
1125 on 8/8/2007 2:01:21 PM said:
My family has owned and operated the bumber cars in keansburg for over fifty years,and have been involved in the park since 1906, myself and my sister being the latest owners. I feel obligated to set the record straight. First off the floor does not get oiled for people to lose traction, the lubricant applied is a mixture of kerosene and graphite flakes, as per the Lusse brothers specs, the wheels pick up the lubricant to keep the bearings free, otherwise the steel wheels in the rear crack, or you lose the axle, not to mention the bearings. Just an FYI, people love it when the lube is applied to the floor. Secondly there are no wires on, in, or near the steering wheel, DUH! The cars would never smoke if the customers didnt continue to hold the pedal down when the car cant move for whatever reason, so the clutch just spins inside the housing burning itself up, making smoke and a fowl odor. Thirdly, the Lusse company went out of business over twenty years ago, making it almost impossible to get parts unless you have them machined, which cost a fortune, which cleary we dont have, nor does keansburg. The ride has one of the largest operating floors going, and we try to keep 16 cars running for the weekends, other cars work that are parked there, they are being saved for when we can actually make money, which DOES NOT include wrist bands, we are independent operators that pay rent to the owner, he owns all the other rides, and he bleeds us dry. The steel skooters in question are from 1944, and some others with the grill difference already mentioned are from 1955, these steel cars are an utter maintanance hog, because of there speed, weight, great impact, and abuse from younger passengers, it is hard to keep one steel car operating for one entire day. They chew up gears that are $700 a set, not to mention the Pre-war rubber on the 40s model that reacts strangly to heat by squeezing in and causing the steel band outside the rubber to fall off. The pedals always get smashed right down to the floor, fuses pop left and right because of the current they draw at certain times, the wiper spings give way constantly, the old lusse cars destroy the newer ones, the leather on the seats is torn apart to the point where they cant be used, cracked rear wheels, broken axles, unbelievable damage from unauthorized head on colisions, and crummy operators to begin with! That ride has cost mt dad and I many twenty hour days, having to make parts on a laithe and all. The effort just to keep it in the bad shape you say it is in now is tremendous, not to mention expensive, youd love the electric bill! Anyway, you are right they are precious gems, my family knows this and we do the best we can. They might not be there after this year so be glad they are there at all, and appreciate the fact that you can still ride atleast one on any given day.
adriahna on 11/24/2007 1:53:12 AM said:
Thanks for the info, its greatly appreciated. I would imagine that those Lusses are hell to maintain - parts, etc. Would you consider going into another business, for the sheer sake of ease in keeping a show afloat? As an independent concessionaire at Keansburg, combined with the headache innate to running a vintage ride, it has to be a huge pain. I understand the desire to keep the family business doing its thing, but to have older Lusses hanging out in the open, exposed to the elements - I just dont see the point of that. Collectors and/or other amusement owners could surely use them - see Knoebels or Hoffmans Playland as running examples...
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