Date: 1953

Origin: CNE Archives;

Text: James Lorimer, THE EX: A Picture History of the Canadian National Exhibition (Toronto: James Lewis & Samuel, Publishers, 1973) p. 109

CNE guests defy gravity in the Rotor while others prefer to watch!

The Great Rotor was introduced on the CNE Midway in 1953.

“The Giant Rotor” says the 1953 program, “will leave you, your hat and purse, safely glued to the wall.” The invention of an ingenious German engineer Ernst Hoffmeister, The Giant Rotor, over 50 feet high, operates on the principle of centrifugal force.” Hoffmeister invented the ride in the late 1940s and it premiered at Oktoberfest in 1949. Rotors and were a mainstay at fairs and events throughout Europe and North American in the 1950s and 1960s. The Rotor is a large, upright barrel, rotated at 33 revolutions per minute. The rotation of the barrel creates a centrifugal effect equivalent to almost 3 g. Once the barrel has attained full speed, the floor is retracted, leaving the riders stuck to the wall of the drum. At the end of the ride cycle, the drum slows down and gravity takes over. The riders slide the wall slowly. Most Rotors were construction deck.