Genealogy Road Trip Tip 26: Store your gear

Tip 26: Store your gear. Part of “Genealogy Road Trip Tips: Take Your Loved Ones With You” — 30 posts in 30 days for NaBloPoMo 2016.

You and your travel partner had such a great time that you are probably already thinking about your next genealogy road trip.

Inspect and store your gear after your trip. Take care of any needed repairs or replacements now so you are ready when your next genealogy research destination calls to you. By: Marc Lacoste

You will be one step ahead if you take the time now to properly inspect and store your gear so it is ready to go when you are.

Here are a few steps to take:

Remove all batteries. If any of your devices  — such as your camera, audio recorder or video equipment — use batteries, remove these when you return. Your next trip might be months or a year away. If you don’t use the equipment in the meantime, the batteries can corrode and cause damage. So pop them all out on your return.

Repair any damage. Did your equipment operate is it should on the trip? Did you drop, shake or break anything? If so, repair the item right away — or replace it if repair is not possible. Do a visual inspection, too. I lost the padding on a selfie stick during a road trip — which I did not discover until it wouldn’t hold my smartphone the next time I used it. Now’s also a good time to clean camera lenses; inspect/replace foam covers on handheld or lavaliere microphones; and replace any chargers that failed during the trip.

Update your storage options. Did it take you a long time to pull your gear together for the trip? Would it be easier next time if everything was in one place? Was it hard to carry or use your gear in the field? At the end of the trip, review your options — both at home and for travel — to see if you are storing your gear in the best way and whether you need additional bags for use in the field.

Develop a cheat sheet for user manuals. I use my digital voice recorder so infrequently that I usually consult the complex user manual before each trip. So my to-do list includes creating a cheat sheet of essential instructions to take with me on the next trip. Alternatively, you could bookmark the online user manuals for your equipment for ready access on your next trip.

Dust it all off and put it away. Once you have all of your audio visual equipment in good working order, dust it all off and store it for the next genealogy journey.

Up next, Tip 27: Supplement your discoveries. Please stop back.

© 2016 Molly Charboneau. All rights reserved.

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