"Build them high...go fast!" says Robert Mampe.

He's talking about Swiss-designed Bolliger and Mabillard roller coasters. Clermont Steel Fabricators, located in Batavia, manufactures the world-renowned B&M coasters that will thrill kids and adults alike for years to come. Mampe, the liaison between Clermont Steel and B&M, recently visited the plant to witness progress on coaster construction.

Some B&M coasters"”such as the stand-up Mantis and the suspended-car Raptor rides at Cedar Point"”are well known to Ohio enthusiasts. B&M has created many other famous attractions, including Batman the Ride and Superman the Ultimate Flight coasters at several Six Flags amusement parks.

Bolliger and Mabillard, founded in the 1980s in Switzerland, is considered to produce the smoothest steel-rail coasters in the world because of its precision engineering. The company was the first to invent an inverted loop coaster. Four of the 10 rides in the Amusement Today Golden Ticket Awards were made by B&M. To date, the company has designed more than 50 coasters in an array of styles.

While B&M designs and sells the multi-million dollar thrill rides, Clermont Steel fabricates the entire coasters, except for the cars and the electronic control systems. Steel frameworks and tracks are shipped from the Batavia plant to their destinations for assembly.

Ken Miller worked for Southern Ohio Fabricators in Batavia. When that company ceased operations in 2004, he and a group of investors bought the property, building and equipment to form Clermont Steel. With Miller at the helm as vice president, the company expanded and re-hired talented employees who had worked for Southern Ohio.

Roller coasters are 80 percent of Clermont Steel's business, but Miller's entrepreneurial spirit tells him it's important to expand and further diversify the company's orders for fabricating other structural steel and metal products. And he would like nothing better than to fulfill an order for Paramount's Kings Island, which he says definitely needs a new steel coaster to keep up with Cedar Point and other competitors. The steel Vortex coaster at Kings Island will be 20 years old next year.

A Kings Island B&M coaster would make it easier for Clermont Steel employees to enjoy one of their products more often. The company employs 60 people, including highly skilled workers who can cut, shape and fit steel to meet B&M's precision standards. There's an element of joy in making a product that produces fun.

"Absolutely"”especially compared to other structural work, like steel buildings," Miller comments. "That's why we got a lot of guys to come back after Southern Ohio [Fabricators] closed. It's a lot different when a dad can take his family out to ride a coaster and say 'I built this'."

Clermont Steel recently shipped a roller coaster to a park outside of Beijing, China. Around the world, thousands of screams of excitement are coming from the twisting, plummenting and looping rails of steel"”crafted with pride in Batavia, Ohio.