Daniel Reetz, the founder of the DIY Book Scanner community, has recently started making videos of prototyping and shop tips. If you are tinkering with a book scanner (or any other project) in your home shop, these tips will come in handy. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCn0gq8 ... g_8K1nfInQ

A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Built a scanner? Started to build a scanner? Record your progress here. Doesn't need to be a whole scanner - triggers and other parts are fine. Commercial scanners are fine too.
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daniel_reetz
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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by daniel_reetz » 09 Feb 2014, 13:51

Ricardo wrote:Just wondering if this scanner is a commercial venture, or will the drawings (dxf or whatever) that are used in the CNC cutter be made available for free for those in other countries to be able to get their own scanner cut out?
Umm, wow. It's kinda tough not to be offended at this question. Here goes:

The first post in this thread has links to the DXF artwork, which is licensed as Open Hardware/CC-BY-SA (and it says so in the files), and the forum has at least a dozen examples of people making their own personal kits and sharing their experiences here with me encouraging them to do so.

I'm also working with a member of the forum to import 5 or 10 "official" kits to Australia for people who don't want to bother with the CNC difficulties, though it's been very difficult due to the Australian postal system being a terrible pain. By "official", I mean that they are produced by myself, can rightfully be called DIY Book Scanners, and the profits go to supporting this forum and my continued research into book scanner technology. There are also "official" kits by Mark Van Den Borre in Belgium, who services the European Union, and by Scann in Chile, who handles South America. I receive no profit from their sales whatsoever; however I trust them 100% to do the right thing, so they are "official" partners in this effort.

Open Source Hardware can be sold for profit. I do make a profit on the kits, though it is not as much as you would need to actually run a business like this. I basically use the profit to fund this forum, and to fund some new software development, and to fund my own 10-35 hours a week that I have spent on the project since 2009. Anyway, feel free to cut your own copy of the kit but please read up on Open Hardware and spend some time going through the forum, too, it will help you tremendously.

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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by Ricardo » 09 Feb 2014, 19:24

Sorry, I never meant to offend.... There are a lot of threads on your great scanner I never saw the dxf files there in that post, and as I know something like this has a huge amount of work to go into it and from my perspective it certainly would not have been wrong if you wished to just sell the kits to recoup some of that work you put into it... It was a misunderstanding on my part... Sorry....
Last edited by Ricardo on 09 Feb 2014, 19:28, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by daniel_reetz » 09 Feb 2014, 19:26

Truly, no worries man. Good luck getting yours up and running! Be sure to check the build threads from other kit users here and off the forums to see where the troubles/solutions are.

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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by Ricardo » 09 Feb 2014, 19:36

Well about all I could contribute at this stage, is if someone in Australia wants to go the DIY route, there is a large local forum in the following link where members have CNC cutters that could no doubt do the cutting if you wanted to go this way...It is a bit of a jumble of forums, but the help would be there... http://www.woodworkforums.com/forum.php

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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by mnesnay » 05 Mar 2014, 21:18

Hi,

Think your design is simply wonderful- genius, in fact! I was wondering what to do if books were larger than 9 x 12? I wanted to order a kit, but most of the records I have to digitize are in books from the 1850s and they measure around 11 x 16. Can your design be adjusted to fit larger books? I'm still reading through all the posts here, but so far I didn't come across anyone mentioning scanning larger books (over 9x12). Thanks for any help/suggestions.

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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by daniel_reetz » 05 Mar 2014, 22:30

mnesnay wrote:Hi,

Think your design is simply wonderful- genius, in fact! I was wondering what to do if books were larger than 9 x 12? I wanted to order a kit, but most of the records I have to digitize are in books from the 1850s and they measure around 11 x 16. Can your design be adjusted to fit larger books? I'm still reading through all the posts here, but so far I didn't come across anyone mentioning scanning larger books (over 9x12). Thanks for any help/suggestions.
Yeah, in fact, I have been working on this for about three months straight. Basically, there will always be a kit similar to the current kit, or exactly the same as the current kit. Most people are well-served by the "smaller" sizes and only rarely/occasionally do larger texts.

However, there is a need for a larger scanner. The limiting factors here are twofold. The first is camera resolution. To image 16 inches at 300DPI is a minimum of 4800 pixels (And that is a bare minimum, some percentage will be wasted on non-book stuff, so make it 5800 pixels). That means at LEAST a 24 megapixel sensor - something that only recently became availalble. And really, you want to do higher resolution than that. But say you're happy with 24mpix - there are currently no cheap compacts at that resolution that offer the kind of control we'd need. So I can scale up the design, but you'll have to buy fairly expensive cameras to make it work. The second factor is the physical size of the scanner, which gets ungainly very fast. Have a look at the Archive's giant, hard-to-use Scribe scanners for an example.

All in all, I'm interested in and working toward addressing this need. I don't have an ETA on that kit right now - but it's a ways off. But I have some questions/thoughts of my own -

This project has always been about doing scanning in a way that is maximally affordable and expedient - and for each person on their own terms. The trade-off has always been that things aren't as slick as they could be. For that reason, I'm a little hesitant to go after expensive scanner designs, because it gets away from the core mission and people's expectations change when they spend $5000 instead of $500. Do you think if I made a small fleet of larger scanners on some kind of renting/borrowing/leasing model that it would be interesting - or would it make more sense for your structure/project to do them as (more expensive) one-off designs? I'm into the idea of ownership overall.

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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by rkomar » 05 Mar 2014, 23:29

I wonder if it makes sense to use four cheap cameras (two per page)? That would get the DPI back up. You'd have to post-process the images a lot more than with one camera per side to produce a single image per page. You would also need more complicated camera rigging hardware, especially if you wanted to be able to switch between one or two cameras per page. Still, it's something to think about.

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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by daniel_reetz » 05 Mar 2014, 23:32

rkomar wrote:I wonder if it makes sense to use four cheap cameras (two per page)? That would get the DPI back up. You'd have to post-process the images a lot more than with one camera per side to produce a single image per page. You would also need more complicated camera rigging hardware, especially if you wanted to be able to switch between one or two cameras per page. Still, it's something to think about.
I think it DOES make sense if you're using cameraphone-style sensors, but it doesn't make as much sense with compacts. Kariluoma and I are going to be doing some experimentation along these lines in the near future. We did some about four years ago, but at the time, the results weren't worth the effort.

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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by mnesnay » 08 Mar 2014, 16:28

Hi,

As to the camera resolution, luckily I have a few friends who are professional photographers that would lend me their Nikon D800 SLR cameras (36.3 Mp), so megapixels would not be an issue on my end.

I took a look at Scribe scanners and I do agree with you. By increasing the size of your current scanner, it starts becoming too cumbersome and causes issues with transporting, etc. Unfortunately, I don't know how else we can scan 11x16 books unless the scanner goes up in size? Am I correct in assuming that if a book 11x16 is put on the 9x12 scanner, it would hit parts of the machine when it was raised to the platen, so it couldn't scan even part of the page? Reason being, I was wondering if each page could be scanned in 2 times and pieced together (top of page and bottom of page)? I believe there is enough of a margin that the sides wouldn't lose too much info. We plan on transcribing the books at a later date since they are handwritten records.

We would be more interested in ownership due to the amount of books we need to scan. Currently, there are over 60 books. I think once the results are seen, we would get requests to do more records. As we are volunteering to digitize these records, we were looking to keep costs down - that's what was so wonderful about your scanner; besides the design, the cost allows a lot more people the chance to do this that never would have been able to.

Renting/leasing sounds interesting, but I would also be concerned with delivery of the scanner as the size increases. I know you mentioned that shipping the glass was an issue and you stopped because of cost and breakage. Unless people were in the area of where you worked (they could pick it up), shipping could then become the price of the current model. I don't know how you would address this and keep to your core mission... So I see your concerns.

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Re: A DIY Book Scanner In Every Hackerspace /DIY Kit

Post by daniel_reetz » 08 Mar 2014, 16:37

Yeah, just to be clear, it's entirely possible to scale up the "hackerspace scanner" to 11x16. I have a rough prototype working at 11x15 scan area, it's not ready for the public but it works.

You're right about the current wooden kit- the books simply wouldn't fit.

Personally, I strongly favor ownership over rental or lease or anything else (the Archive has a number of ways of doing things, but letting you own a Scribe is not one of them, at least not at this time). It just sort of occurred to me that these requests are infrequent enough where it might have made sense for me to put together a couple scanners and loan them out, rather than selling an occasional kit. You're correct, though, that shipping could get really expensive really quickly. I shipped my laser cutter from ND to CA via LTL freight, and it was about $450 - almost the price of the current kit.

I'm not opposed to doing the design work here, given the right timeline. I can't do it in the next two months, but after that a large-format experimental kit for people like you might be a fun thing to try out. Are you in a hurry?

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