W.T. Carny Ride #8: Hustler/Tempest

The Hustler and Tempest, both made by Watkins, are two similar rides with virtually the same components; they both have a large boom that is connected to two smaller booms on either end. Attached to the ends of the smaller booms are large spinning pods that can hold about 8 people. The only real difference is that the Hustler is on a flat plane while the Tempest is titled on a slight angle.

Both of these rides are basically stylized Teacup rides. However the pods are much larger than a normal teacup car and the pods on these rides are very tough to stop spinning; actually, you can’t stop them since there is no wheel in the center of the pod that you can turn.

TempestAs far as looks, many non-rehabbed ones look straight from the 70s. Vivid reds, yellows, greens, and other harsh color combinations were the norm before pastels  become popular. Hustler in particular has a large Menorah looking sign in the center that rotates with the ride. The sign has 7 circular panels that are surrounded by big old light bulbs with one letter of the word ‘HUSTLER’ painted on each panel.

For decor, Tempest has strange umbrella ornaments above the pods. Some are beefier looking than others but I don’t think any actually provide shade or cover from rain.

As far as names go…well, Tempest sounds about right, Hustler on the other hand reminds me of the porno mag of the same name.

The Ride

I’ll describe the Hustler because that is the one that I have actually been on.

First the ride op opens the door, and a certain number of people pile into the pod. I don’t remember the ride having seatbelts or any sort of safety restraint. It really doesn’t need them; I mean, how often do you see Teacup rides with safety belts?. Hustler does have two circular shaped bars in the center though, one to hold onto, and one to put your feet up against.

If you pool all the people on one side, then the car spins like hell. That’s fun! If everyone is spread out then the car sort of balances itself and doesn’t spin as much. Booooring!

Other Info

There is a ride called Storm that is a new age Tempest made by Wisdom. The Storm has a large platform, so everyone can load at the same time. The cars on the Storm are rectangular shaped with 4 seats on each side; there’s also harnesses to keep riders in which is a no-no on rides that don’t go upsidedown! A lapbar similar to what Wisdom Tornado rides have would be adequate I think. Unlike the Hustler and Tempest, Storm has cars that spin mechanically. There is yet another new age Tempest called ‘XScream’…a very original name. This one looks a lot like the Storm, only there is no platform and the entire ride rises into the air, tilts, and does a wave type motion. It sounds cooler than it is.


Hustler at the 2008 Holy Family Carnival in Hazlet, NJ.


10: Yo Yo | 9: Trabant | 8: Hustler | 7: Cobra | 6: Ring of Fire | 5: Paratrooper | 4: Scat | 3: Zipper | 2: Hi-Roller | 1: Sky Diver | WTCR Home


  • BACH says:

    this ride looks so boring

  • YUKI says:

    They had a Tempest at my local fair. Yep, it had chains for seat belts. And you had to be 2 inches taller to ride it than you had to be for their Zipper. WTF?

  • gordon says:

    the tempest i ran had seat belts i think it was updated though pain in the ass spin it by hand hold the break with your foot and hope they held the law now is seatbelts like a scrambler pattie can’t sell a ride makes money on parts all because a state run park had a couple of staff not trained not to jump on the ride when it’s moving 2 deaths in 2 years.

  • Christian says:

    I’ve operated a Wisdom Storm before.

  • Chris says:

    I’ve actually been on this one before! It was at the same carnival where I saw the Scat. It pretty much feels like a Scrambler.

  • Cyclone411 says:

    We had a Tempest at the old school amusement park I used to work at. It was the most notorious puke ride on the midway. With so little control by the riders on the spinning action it can really get out of control and develop serious forces. There were always two 5 gallon pails of water kept by the ride and they got tossed on the seats multiple times every day. Not a ride I choose to go on.

  • Boston George says:

    Where I live Fiesta Shows has 1 that was originally called “The Break Dance”, then “Super Dance” and now “The Twister”. It’s actua;;y tilted at about a 45-50 degree angle

  • chuck dalitz says:

    Send fotos of a tempest and am Looking for a Viking ship and a travant or a round up

  • JBscar says:

    There sure were alot of rides based on the tea-cup concept.

  • JIm Garrett says:

    I rode the Hustler today at an outlet center parking lot in NC. I immediately felt sick (the Sizzler I rode prior had no ill effects on me). I should have known by the narrow, rickety ramp and the 40-year-old Chevy seat belts that something was wrong, here.
    This thing spun so fast and was so rough.
    Ended up hurling into a shopping bag on the drive home. Haven’t vomited in over 10 years. Never again. Will be sticking to modern rides, thanks.

  • James Hacker says:

    I’m currently got an issue with the rides brake system. The cable snapped and we cannot get the Boom to rotate. Would it be possible to get a diagram or repair manual?

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