Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Mark III Monorails [Disneyland]

Q: Did the Mark III Monorails at Disneyland have a fourth color? I remember red, blue and yellow, but I heard there was a fourth vehicle that was hardly used except when one of the others was in for repairs.
Brett, Newport Beach, Connecticut 

A [Dave Smith]: There were four colors for the Mark III version of the Monorail, which began service at Disneyland in July 1969 — red, blue, gold and green. The Mark III Monorails were replaced by Mark V models beginning in 1986 — their four colors were purple, orange, blue and red. (Mark IV Monorails were only at the Walt Disney World Resort.)

More to See: Design + Old Monorail System + Tron Legacy [by Marcio Disney]

Disneyland Alweg Monorail System - A Germany company founded by Dr Axel Lennart Wenner-Gren [ALWEG] which developed a monorail prototype in 1957 that was the basic design for future Disney Monorail system.

The different models of the monorails over the years of the two parks in the USA

The Mark I built by Alweg

Disneyland, CA 1959 - 1961  One blue and red monorail

The Mark II by Alweg

Disneyland, CA 1961 - 1969 the two original monorails lengthened by one car plus one yellow added to the system

The Mark III by Alweg

Disneyland, CA 1969 - 1987 four brand new monorails with five cars each

The Mark IV by Martin Marietta

Walt Disney World, FL 1971 - 1988/89 (two of these monorails were reworked for the Vegas track until the new model was built. Now they sit rotting away)

The Mark V rebuilt by Messerschmitt Bolkow Blohm

Disneyland, CA 1989 - 2008/09

The Mark VI by Bombardier

Walt Disney World 1989 - now

The Mark VII by Burke Design & TPI Composites

Disneyland, CA 2008/09 - now

For the upcoming sequel Tron: Legacy, Disney Parks Monorail was skinned to advertise the new film:

The art makes the mororail appear to be a complete lightcycle with a trail of colored light

To learn everything about the old Disneyland Monorail System, visit:

Jack Wagner - The Voice in the Monorails
Most of Jack Wagner's Disney recordings were made at his own house where he had a recording studio (which was installed by Disney in the 1970s).

A voiceover booth in his home was connected to Studio D at Disneyland in Anaheim.

At the time, Jack's home in Southern California was one of the first to use a direct audio link from a remote recording studio!

Statement made by Jack Bohannan on Hidden Mickeys

I would like to set the record straight on the voice. Throughout the 1970's and into the 1980's the voice heard on all Disney monorails, as well as most all the voiceover work for all the parks was the legendary "Voice of Disney", Jack Wagner.

I have had the privilege of working with him many times through the years.

One interesting side note is that Jack's home in Southern California was one of the first uses for a direct audio link from a remote recording studio. It was put in by Disney in the 70's and connected a voiceover booth in his home to Studio D at Disneyland in Anaheim. He frequently would receive last minute calls for special events and was able to just walk over to the booth and "beam" it directly to the park. Anyhow, with the amount of work that Florida was generating after Epcot and the Studios opened, plus the fact that Jack wanted to head towards retiring sometime, other voice talent was sought out locally in Florida.

There have been several people used in voiceover work since then, one of them being Kevin Miles, who is one of the original members of the Voices of Liberty at Epcot, and can still be heard there daily. Kevin recorded the monorail voiceovers after the Grand Floridian was built, and his voice was still there until the 25th Anniversary rolled around, when it was updated by one of the new voiceover talents.

The amount of voiceover work at the parks now is astronomical, and it is shared by a couple of people who have "the voice", including Kevin. Interestingly enough, though, Jack's voice can still be heard welcoming everyone to Orlando on the monorails at the airport terminals.

Tom Bohannan, quote from the HiddenMickeys.org site, added July 25, 1997.

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