Equipment


Equipment and Use

35 MM Camera
800 Speed Film
Batteries (extra)
Black Thread or Scotch Tape
Candles (unscented)
Carrying Case
Cell Phone
Chalk
Compass
Digital Voice Recorder
Documentation Forms
Electromagnet Field Detector
First Aid Kit
Flashlights (3 – 1 red w/right angle / 2 white)
Lighters (at least 2)
Matches (box)
Measuring Tape
Motion Detector
Note Pad
Partner (never go alone)
Pencils
Pens
Permission (if needed for location)
Photo ID
Thermometer / Hygrometer (digital – in/out)
Talc Powder
Toolbox
Tripod
Video Camera
Watches (battery and windup)
Water Bottle

Equipment Use:

2-Way Radio Set
Radios keep investigators in contact should they need to be in a different room/floor of a building during an investigation. Cost can vary from $12.99 to $40.00.

35 MM Camera
Any type of camera can and should be used during investigations. 35 MM cameras will take photos at different speeds and different lighting levels. Cost varies on different models depending on features. Try to take some of your photos at the same exact time with two different cameras and angles.

800 Speed Film
800 Speed Film is used in dark or low light with fast moving subjects. Always have extra film ready for use. Experiment with different film speeds and lighting.

Batteries
Make sure you have a large supply of batteries for all of the equipment that uses them. New batteries are known to drain quickly during paranormal investigations.

Black Thread or Scotch Tape
A simple piece of black thread acts as a temporary seal on doors and windows during an investigation. If the thread is broken, you know the door or window has been opened while you were in another room. A small piece of tape across the door/widow and it‘s frame will work as well. You can buy both at a department store.

Brass Dowsing Rods
Rods are an optional tool that will sometimes react much like the needle on a compass around unexplained energy. Held loosely in both hands, the rods will cross each other as the energy increases. You can find uncut rods at most hardware stores, and sometimes an employee at the store will cut them for you free, just ask. They should be no thicker than a standard coat hanger and right around 18 inches long. They will need to be bent carefully into an L shape, 3 inches up for the handle. The other 15 inches act as your pointers.

Candles
Candles are a backup to flashlights, especially if there is no electricity at the location. They should be unscented so their fragrance doesn’t interfere with any aroma you may encounter at the investigation site. Unscented candles can usually be found at any department store.

Carrying Case
If you have a lot of different equipment, you will need something simple to carry it in. The large black shoulder bags found at office supply stores have lots of compartments and will hold most of everything listed on this page. Cost varies between $25.00 and $60.00 at Staples. Cameras and their accessories are usually kept in their own bags.

Cell Phone
It‘s always a good idea to have a phone close in case of an emergency, especially in a fairly remote location. Turn the phone off during investigations so that it does not interfere with recordings and electromagnetic fields.

Chalk
A small piece of dustless chalk is perfect for making small temporary marks on walls and floors to indicate where an object has been, or moved to.

Compass
You‘ll need a compass to indicate direction when you sketch out areas of the floor plan. These simple drawings are helpful after an investigation to remember the correct layout of a room or outdoor area. Compass needles have also been known to spin or move on their own during investigations.

Digital Voice Recorder (w/mic extension)
Any kind of recorder can and should be used during investigations. The digital voice recorder has no moving parts, the recording will not pick up the sound of the machine working, and there are no tapes to slow down, break or fumble with in the dark.

Documentation Forms
Pre-printed forms that can be filled in quickly with data during an investigation will cut down on the time spent writing, and they will keep the paperwork organized. The forms should include a witness questionnaire, an equipment check list, a basic nine segment floor plan, the property owner‘s permission agreement, and the main investigation log sheet. A clipboard will make these documents easier to work with. Forms can be designed in any computer word program and printed.

Electromagnetic Field Detector (Gauss Meter)
These meters are actually designed to measure the electromagnetic field coming from all sorts of things from high-voltage electrical towers to television screens. EMF Detectors are known to signal unexplained electromagnetic fields in areas that are experiencing possible paranormal activity. The most reliable and inexpensive Guass Meters are found on the internet at LessEMF.com The Guass Master is $39.95 and the E.L.F.-Zone Gauss Meter is $12.95. Both are found on the same page.

First Aid Kit
A basic first aid kit is always logical to have on hand because accidents do happen. The kit should have enough supplies to cover the number of investigators on the team plus two. Basic Kits can be found at most Drug Stores.

Flashlights
At least one, but preferably two flashlights with white light should be carried on investigations. Flashlights with red lenses are easier on the eyes when trying to adjust them to the darkness, and they can be found at most sporting goods stores as camping equipment.

Lighters (at least 2)
Lighters are also a backup to flashlights, and are used to light candles.

Matches (stick/box)
Matches are the same as lighters; another backup.

Measuring Tape
It helps to know the area’s basic dimensions when sketching out the floor plan. Find measuring tapes at any hardware store.

Motion Detector
If a solid object can seemingly move by itself, then logically, it can also set off a motion detector when it moves. If anything or anyone is moving around another part of the investigation site without your knowledge, the motion detector will let you know. Very accurate motion detectors can be found in the toy department in children‘s spy gear. Working night-vision goggles can be found there as well.

Note Pad
A simple notepad is always useful.

Partner
You shouldn’t go to any investigation site alone. There really is safety in numbers, and you want a reliable witness if something unusual happens while you are there.

Pencils/Pens
You will need several writing instruments to fill out documentation forms and take notes during the investigation procedures.

Permission
You must have written or verbal permission to be on any private property. It‘s best to get it in writing if at all possible. Just a simple piece of paper saying it‘s okay to be there will do. It’s a good idea to let the police know in advance that you’ve been invited to be on property that doesn’t usually welcome the public.

Photo ID
Keep a legitimate form of identification on you at all times during the investigation. It’s common sense, and it’s the law in the state of Kentucky.

Talcum or Flour
Simple baby powder will work just as well and comes in a small adjustable top bottle. A light sprinkling on a hard floor might sound like something Sherlock Holmes would do, but tracks will be left if there is any movement across the floor while you are in another area.

Thermometer / Hygrometer (digital – in/out)
Any kind of thermometer can be used to measure temperature, but a digital thermometer will give a quicker reading that‘s a little easier to see in the dark. We decided on an indoor/outdoor model that remembers the high and low reading for the day. It also reads the humidity level and has a built-in clock. The cost was under $10.00 at Target.

Thermal Emergency Blanket
These stadium size blankets are made of a thin silver material and fold into a tiny flat square that fits in your palm. When people become extremely frightened or injured, their body temperature can drop rapidly and they begin to shiver.

Toolbox
A small box with a few basic tools you’re going to need will do. A lot of battery operated equipment need tiny screwdrivers to open the compartments. If that’s all you need, that’s all you carry.

Tripod
After you do a walk through the entire investigation site with the video camera, you will want to place the camera on a still tripod to capture the rest of the investigation, and keep your hands free.

Video Camera
Any type of video camera can and should be used during investigations. Video tapes can drag, but I think I would rather capture something unusual on an old fashioned original tape that a digital memory stick.

Watches (battery and windup)
You’ll need to keep track of the time during all investigations and will need both types of watches to back each other up. Times should be noted along with reading results.

Water Bottle
Take a filled water bottle and it will most likely come back empty. Water is needed for thirst, cleansing a minor wound, washing hands, and even rinsing dirt from an old tombstone. Don’t go to any remote area without some clean water for personal use.