Thrill seekers hurling themselves down hill in spheres made by Cromer firm
- Credit: Archant
Daredevils are hurling themselves downhill at 30mph inside giant inflatable spheres painstakingly created by a specialist Norfolk firm.
Cromer-based Structure-flex has made three 12-foot spheres for gift experience company SphereMania, which offers people the chance to roll downhill, at an adventure centre in Nottingham, inside a transparent globe; an extreme sport sometimes called 'zorbing.'
Making the spheres is a skilled and time-consuming process. Each takes:
? more than 120 hours
? 67 metres of fabric
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? 500 webbings
? 1,000 rivets
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? 2,000 washers
? 12 panels of tough 2mm-thick transparent material welded together.
Paul Reeve, managing director of Structure-flex, said a second, smaller, inner sphere, accessed through a tunnel connected to the outer sphere, was where the thrill-seeker was suspended by a harness and cushioned from the ground by about three feet of air.
A complex network of webbing straps in the air gap provided stability.
He added: 'I haven't tried it myself but it certainly looks like it's not something for the faint-hearted!'
Structure-flex, which employs 76 people at its Holt Road factory, has made heavy-duty flexible fabric products for 45 years and won a Queen's Award for International Enterprise in 2013 for increasing its export sales by more than 250pc over the previous three years.