"TRACK POWERED" COLOR CAMERA SYSTEM
FOR YOUR MODEL RAILROAD
CHOOCHOOCAM IS A TV QUALITY
VIDEO CAMERA SYSTEM MOUNTED
IN YOUR ENGINE OR TRAIN CAR
TRANSMITS REAL TIME, FULL
VIDEO TO YOUR STANDARD
CHOOCHOOCAM IS I THE
11/99 ISSUE OF CLASSIC TOY TRAINS
CHOOCHOOCAM IS IN
THE10/99 ISSUE OF O GAUGE RAILROADING
MODELERS..TAKE A LOOK AT THE HO CAMERA SYSTEM
TRADE IN YOUR OLD RAILSCOPE ON A NEW CHOOCHOOCAM
WOULDN'T YOU LIKE TO SEE YOUR
LAYOUT FROM THE CAB OF YOUR ENGINE ?
FROM THE OBSERVATION CAR ?
FROM THE REAR OF THE TRAIN LOOKING FORWARD ?
OR...... WHAT DOES THAT VILLAGE REALLY LOOK LIKE ?
OR..... IS THAT TUNNEL OR BRIDGE REALISTIC ?
OR.....HEAR THE ACTUAL CLICKITY-CLACK OF RAIL JOINTS
OR.....HEAR THE CLANGING OF THE CROSSING GATE BELL
NOW, SEE AND HEAR IT ALL DIRECTLY FROM YOUR
MOVING TRAIN !
The first photo was taken with a film camera held at eye level. The next
views are taken from a 12" color TV screen. Choochoocam is in the
red and white Frisco.
MOVING UNTO THE TRESTLE
ROUNDING A CURVE
WAITING FOR WESTERN PACIFIC TO
A VIEW ABOVE THE TOWN
COLOR CAMERA SYSTEM
- NO BATTERIES....CAMERA OPERATES DIRECTLY FROM
- WIRELESS TRANSMISSION FROM TRAIN TO TV
- TRANSMIT UP TO 200 FEET AND MORE
- FULL COLOR TV QUALITY PICTURES
- TRANSMIT LAYOUT SOUNDS FROM THE CAMERA CAR
TO THE TV IF DESIRED
- VCR COMPATIBLE
- ALL PARTS MOUNT IN A LIONEL U36B O-GAUGE ENGINE
- ALSO USE HO, 0-SCALE, G AND LARGER
ENGINES OR CARS
- NO SETUP. PLACE CHOOCHOOCAM ON TRACK AND GO!
- MODULAR DESIGN. CAMERA, POWER PACK AND
TRANSMITTER ARE EASILY MOUNTED
- OPERATE UP TO 4 CAMERAS .... SIMULTANEOUSLY
.... MOBILE OR STATIONARY
IS NOW IN OPERATION AT:
- Lionel Visitor Center, Chesterfield, Michigan
- TCA National Toy Train Museum, Strasburg,
- Flower City Tin Plate Trackers, Rochester, New York
- Detroit Historical Museum Glancy Train Exhibit,
- Henry Ford Greenfield Village, Dearborn, Michigan
- The Detroit Model Railroad Club
- The Houston Tinplate Operators Society
- Numerous private layouts
- The San Diego 3 Railers located in the San Diego
Model Railroad Museum, Balboa Park
- The Museum of Discovery, Little Rock, AR
- The Ocean City Train Garden, Ocean City, MD
- The Childrens Museum of Indianapolis, Indianapolis,
The Choochoocam kit consists of the three
modules which mount in the engine, tender
or other car. These are the camera,
transmtter/antenna and power supply. In addition, the
receiver, all connecting cables and full
instructions are included. To complete the system
it is necessary to mount the three modules in the
train and connect up the cables. No
modifications are required in the track or layout.
THE CHOOCHOOCAM PARTS
Dimensions listed are in inches and are
approximate. We list them to help you to select the
engine or train car in which you will mount your Choochoocam.
For special installations
we can provide some modifications in the size of the
power supply. Please contact us about
installing Choochoocam in a specific engine
or car. See the FAQ for a new camera lens
for increased sensitivity.
If you live in the greater Detroit area within
50 miles of downtown, we will provide a
demonstration of an 0-gauge Choochoocam on
your rails for a flat fee of $50.00.
The $50.00 fee will be applicable to the price of a
ChoochooCAM purchased during
the following 6 months.
If you do not have an 0-gauge layout but would
still like to see the Choochoocam,
we will bring the small layout which we use at
local train shows to your location. The
same terms as listed above will apply.
This is the Choochoocam-HO mounted on an HO passenger car chassis.
From left to
right you can see the camera, transmitter, power regulator and battery pack.
With the car
resting on a table, the maximum height of 2 3/8" is required over the
transmitter case. None
of the components overhang the edges of the chassis.
The Choochoocam-HO operates only on battery power. The fast charge
that is supplied with the Choochoocam-HO will operate the system for
about 2 hours and
30 minutes. The battery charger shipped with the system charges the battery
in about 10
hours. Additional battery packs and fast chargers are available.
All other aspects of the Choochoocam-HO are the same as the
since all of the parts with the exception of the power supply are the same.
Choochoosound II transmits live sound from the
camera car to the TV speaker. A small
sensitive microphone (0.375" x 0.250"),
mounted on the camera car and wired to the
onboard transmitter, picks up the track
background sounds, clickity-clack of the track
joints, clanging from a crossing gate bell, the
whistle and sounds from a passing train, and
sounds emanating from an animated station or
other trackside accessory.
Choochoosound II adds one more bit of realism to
the Choochoocam experience.
RAILSCOPE TRADE-IN OFFER
Trade in your old Lionel Railscope and receive a $100.00 discount on a new
Choochoocam. Call toll free 1-313-881-6576 today for details.
Choochoocam System Kit for 6 to 18vac and 6.5 to22vdc................$595.00
Choochoocam-Z System Kit, 10 to 27vac and 11 to
Choochoocam-HO System Kit with battery and
Choochoocam Stationary Camera Kit.....................................contact
Choochoosound II, sound
Add battery backup (see note*
Installation** in your engine or car, add.............................................$100.00
Kits contain all parts required to install and run Choochoocam
All prices are plus shipping and handling
* Some layouts, particularly those with block control, reduce or turn off
the track power
while the engine is stopped. In order to have the camera continue to transmit
interval, a nicad rechargeable battery can be integrated into the Choochoocam
** Consultation via telephone or email will be required to determine if
your engine or
car has dimensions sufficient to accommodate Choochoocam.
Click here to send us an email
for technical information not covered in this web site
If you wish to talk to a real person call us at 313-881-6576
Q & A or all of the info not
Q. Is Choochoocam the Lionel System we have been seeing?
Q. What are the specs on the camera?
A. Camera sensitivity is 3 lux, definition is 380 lines, lens is f3.6, focus
is about 2" to infinity.
The camera has electronic shutter....1/60 to 1/10,000
exposure control, which
effectively takes care or variable lighting. The
standard lens protrudes about 0.375"
from the camera board and requires a 0.125"
hole through which to look. A new lens is
available now which increases the sensitivity to .5
lux. The lens protrudes about 1" from
the camera board and requires a 0.25" hole
through which to look. Focus with this lens
is about 6" to infinity. The price is the same
for either camera lens.
Q. Will the transmitted signal pass through walls, etc.?
A. The signal will pass through most walls including those that have metal
ducts. The signal will
also pass through metal truss bridges and chicken
wire supported scenery.
Q. Will the camera lose picture when traversing switches and
A. We suggest using at least two power pickups and four if possible. You
should also add
ground wires connected directly to the metal frames
of the trucks. These wires should be
soldered to each truck. The wires are then tied
together and connected to one of the
input wires of the power supply. The power supply
will hold up for about 1/2 second
so with two pickups there should be no loss of
Q. Can I exceed 18VAC or 22VDC on the tracks?
A. A qualified yes. Please contact the factory to discuss.
Q. What about remote control systems?
A. So far Choochoocam has not experienced any interference problems
with any remote
Q. Are there any compatibility issues with transformers?
A. The only issue we know of is with the Lionel PH-1 power pack. Choochoocam
current of .5 to 1 amp and some electronic power
packs consider this to be a short circuit.
Q. Is any interference caused by train motors or other layout
A. We have seen some interference caused by Lionel vertical shaft wound field
motors which is
usually taken care of by installing one or two
capacitors on the motor. Permanent magnet
motors seem to be pretty free of interference.
Q. May the receiver be mounted away from the TV?
A. The Choochoocam receiver puts out both a video signal. You can use
at least 25' of
video coax between the receiver and the TV and
can probably go to 50' if necessary.
Q. My layout is L shaped. Will this cause problems?
A. The Choochoocam signal will not pass through a basement wall that
has earth on the
outside You can probably position the receiver over
the crook in the L and achieve
good pictures all the way around. If your
walls are studs with paneling or plaster,
you should not experience difficulty.
Q. Where should I mount the camera?
A. We suggest that the system be installed in a dummy engine looking forward.
can then be used at the front of the train,
the rear of the train looking backward
(like an observation car view), or at the rear
of the train looking forward over a flat car
(this one is real cool when you have a long
train and great scenery). Customers have also
mounted the system in cabooses, boxcars,
flatcars (disguised as a load) and looking
sideways from the cab window.
Q. How often does the battery pack need to be charged?
A. A fully charged pack will power Choochoocam for more than 1 1/2
hours with no track
power applied. The pack is trickle charged while the
train is running and may never need
to be charged. It all depends on how much starting
and stopping is done.
Q. Can I use a large screen TV?
A. Since Choochoocam provides a picture which is superior to normal
TV, you can use any
screen which gives an adequate picture on commercial
Q. How much light is required on the layout?
A. Light is hard to quantify. You need enough light to easily read a
newspaper. Too little
light will cause washed out colors, apparent loss of
focus, and noise and snow in the picture.
This page was prepared by Skip
Revised March 3, 2003