Hot Trains Video

Jamnest's picture

Just received my copy of Hot Trains #1.  Although I am not an ALCO fan the video was great.  I especially liked following the Oak Hill Turn and its switching moves.  Fantastic scenery too.  I have also been following the BC&SJ through OPS Videos #3 & #4.

Due to a job change I work some distance from my dream basement.  I am building a domino/shelf layout around the walls of an 1800 sq ft basement.  Each time I get home I construct a few more dominos.  I have a movable (air craft carrier) staging yard at each end of the layout.  The layout represents the Kansas City Southern from Kansas City to the Ozarks in 1981.  This is a single track main line with very little switching.  I have also allocated some layout space for the Kansas City area with some switching in the Kansas City West Bottoms area and interchange with other Kansas City Railroads.  Watching the Hot Trains and OPS videos has caused me to shift my construction priority from the main line to the West Bottoms Area.  Even switching a few industries that will be represented appears to provide lots of opportunities for enjoyment.  Due to distance from other modelers I am primarily a "Lone Wolf" model railroader.  Last weekend (labor day) I was abe to finish construction of the West Bottons dominos.  I have orderd track and hope to get some track laid thext month when I am home.

The time "on the road" is not wasted.  I am installing DCC decoders in locomotives.  (I have my PR3 and a small test track).  I will also start construction of some of the structures in the West Bottoms Area.

I hope to retire in about 10 years and return to the layout "full time".  In the mean time, keep the videos comming!

Great job Charlie.

joef's picture

Thanks ...

I'm not Charlie, but thanks for the kind words about the Hot Trains video vol. 1.

The emphasis in Model Trains Video's new Hot Trains series is railfanning a model railroad with lots and lots of model trains running.

Unlike the Allen Keller series, Hot Trains totally overdoses on realistic railfanning video angles and on treating the model as if it were a real railroad. You get tons of trains running through great scenery - and see the railroad operate as the owner envisioned it would be run.

In addition, Hot Trains throws in lots of how-to extras.

We think it's a cool new format for presenting model railroading in a way that's unlike what's been done so far.

If you'd like to see a preview, just click this link.





Joe Fugate
Publisher, Model Railroad Hobbyist magazine

Joe Fugate's HO Siskiyou Line

kleaverjr's picture

Is there narration?


I love the idea of having more railfanning of a (model) railroad (compared to the Keller "model" of doing videos) but in the preview there wasn't any narration.  Even on prototype videos there is narration as to what is going on, what the train is, etc.  Is that how these videos are done, or is there no narration.  Also, is there a trackplan that we can follow so we can see where the video is being taken.  These are both features of the Keller video's that I find a positive. 

Ken L.

skiloff's picture


Ken, I've got 6 prototype videos and not one of them has any narration.  However, it would be nice, I agree, if there was at least some narration to give you an idea of what you are looking at.  Of course, titles could do that in a pinch, too. 


HO Scale '70s/80s era

I liked it!

Charlie did a great job on this (and the BC&SJ). It has a nice balance of rail fanning, a little operations, some how to and a once around the layout real life look. I think Charlie really hit it out of the park when it came to the sound. I know most folks won’t understand this. It’s not just and the blending of the general sounds of a train, the jointed rail and squealing wheels or using the right horns during the op’s.   It’s beyond the speed matching the sound to the engine - how many noticed the babbling brook as the train crosses over the bridge, the dog barking at the train or the birds? It’s these details that make the quality of the Model Train Video collection – 5 part how to, Live Ops! and now Hot Trains.

On the sound note, any one think there will ever be a sound decoder for cars?   Put one or two in a train that have that jointed rail sound or the squealing of the brakes? I think it would be easy to do. You would have to be sure to speed match to loco and have a mute button during switching ops and the whole train isn’t going… Just a thought
Looking forward to the next MTV………maybe a Charles Smiley spoof?
P.S. FAST Shipping too!

Sound cars, squealing flanges, done and dusted...

Dear Steve,

Yes, Digitrax "Soundbug" decoders are probably the most cost effective "sound only" decoders that can be fit in HO freightcars. (They are "user loadable", but it's not a "plug n play" system yet by most accounts).

Clanking couplers and flangesqueals are a regular question over on the LayoutSound yahoogroup. The team there have developed a number of solutions over the last 2 - 3 years, and would be happy to share...

Happy Modelling,
Aim to Improve,
Prof Klyzlr

PS while the audio foley/effects in videos are wonderful, similar effects are totally do-able _Right_Now_ in your own layout room! Ask the LayoutSound guys for more info...
(No Hi-Jack intended, I just know that they've been "cutting edge" RE Layout and "Scale Sound" for years now...)

bear creek's picture


Yup, the video is fully narrated. Some serious, some tongue in cheek (like the comment about radiological dating showing the age of the oldest rocks along the BC&SJ right of way being at least 6 years old).

I'm really glad you guys liked it. It was quite a blast to make...

Horace Fither sez to tell youse guise that he had a great time making it too, desipite the picnic table / checkers game conversation in the ending credits...


Charlie ( am I really an Alco-holic) Comstock

 Contributing Editor, Model Railroad Hobbyist magazine

Uh Oh, Joe,...

Just when I thought I wouldn't have to buy anything else for a while, you come up with something new to put on the shopping list. I guess you won't be winning any popularity contests as far as my wife is concerned, but what she doesn't know isn't going to hurt anyone. So keep my future purchase a secret until it arrives.

Ok, I was joking but right now I'll have to find time to watch the preview since my office computer at work can't look at video previews. It'll have to wait until tonight when I am home. I'll probably buy it then. Obviously you plan to release more of these. So why not offer a subscription deal?


bear creek's picture

HOT Trains!

First off, many, many, thanks to all of you who have bought (and are buying) volume 1.

Actually Joe took a 'supervisory' role in HOT Trains. I did the modleing, scripting, shooting, editing, post production, audio dubbing, dvd programming as well as enhancing some scenery that wasn't up to snuff for the video. My other Joe buddy, Joe Brugger, helped in a number of scenes by helping with lighting set up and juggling throttles while I juggled tripods and the camcorder. Joe Fugate has been my video production mentor/guru - with out his tutalage over the last two years HOT Trains would not have been possible. He provided general guidance, Q/A, and advice/help building the cover and DVD artwork for volume 1. is handling the creation, packaging, and shipping of the DVDs.

As far as volume 2 goes, yes, I'd like to produce more HOT Trains videos. However, producing HOT Trains volume 1 AND Model Railroad Hobbyist at the same time left me little to no time for sleeping and paying attention to my ever-so-understanding wife. I did have a lot of fun working on this DVD -- getting to see your layout come to 'life' on the 'silver screen' is a real kick. For a while I was so immersed in this projbect I'd walk into the train dungeon (as my wife calls it) and think "This can't be my railroad" because I was so used to seeing it from a scale person's eye view.

I would like to do more of these DVDs, but can't commit to a schedule until we get monthly issues of MRH under control. If/when I do commit to a schedule, there may or may not be subscriptions with discounts -- HOT Trains is already 1/2 the price of Allen Keller videos (with the MRH bonus coupon codes. It's been almost t two years since I was laid off from my high-falutin', hi-tech, day job and I'd really like to earn enough money to hold on to my train room (and house).

If you want to see volume 2 and see it  sooner rather than later, buying DVDs will send me (and Joe) a clear message that we should get crackin' on it.

Thanks again to all of you!

Charlie Comstock
World is Flat Video


 Contributing Editor, Model Railroad Hobbyist magazine

HOT trains!

Have no fear I'll be putting n my order. I've bought just about everything else Model.Trains sells.

Just placed my order.


Hot Trains, HOT STUFF!

HOT Trains is already 1/2 the price of Allen Keller videos (with the MRH bonus coupon codes.

No special deals required!  The MRH subscriber coupons are enough.

Sounds fantastic!  Reserve a copy for me.

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