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

Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

A place to introduce yourself, and to meet other awesome people.
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Re: Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

Post by yurilong » 11 Oct 2010, 15:37

Greetings! My name is Yuri, and I work with rare books at a museum library. I've been using our overhead scanner (Konica-Minolta PS7000C) for a few years now, but it isn't optimal 100% of the time. Sometimes books are too large for the scanner or cannot be opened flat enough to capture a good scan without damaging the book, and occassionally the scanner just can't decipher the image with a reasonable amount of quality. I've recently started using my SLR camera in these situations and this got me interested in setting up a DIY scanner for my own stuff, possibly with some sort of automation involved. Also, being an art library we're mainly concerned with images/illustrations and do not run OCR software so I really don't know anything about it and am curious to learn about software processing and open-source OCR solutions.

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Re: Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

Post by Innov8r » 12 Oct 2010, 16:37

Hi I'm Dave and I'm glad to be here.
I bought a ScanSnap S510M to scan the thousands of magazines I can't bear to discard. Many are entirely out of production. Although I certainly don't need daily access to them, I'm a bit of an archivist in that I just know I will want to look up something from them at a later time. My plan was to have a local bindery chop off the magazine spines in stacks of 24 at a time, then run the pages through the SnapScan. Then OCR and save as searchable PDFs. But when it came down to it, I just couldn't destroy all those magazines, even to save a 1/4 of the floor space in the garage.

Several years ago, I heard of the Google Book Ripper, and investigated, found the 'really expensive' machine, and did not buy it. Recently I have discovered this vibrant community of DIY Book Scanner Makers, I'm rather excited about the project! I'm a person of many questions, but I'm also someone who is fairly good at creating technical documentation. I'm most definitely a Mac user, but I have a bootable Linux machine too, and a sickly XP laptop that is far beyond it's prime. I use an iPod Touch (late 2009) as a reader when I'm away from my big Mac.

I occasionally blog about technology for indoors & out.

When I'm not using the Mac, I'm reading (about business mostly), camping, exploring very old 4x4 roads, ghost towns of the American West, socializing, going to various club meetings, or researching items of passing interest.

We have a home built TearDrop Trailer that we take camping. Sometimes we get really, really off the beaten path.

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Mark Main
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Number of books owned: 0
Country: United States

Mark Main

Post by Mark Main » 19 Oct 2010, 23:04

I'm Mark. I'm grateful to all here who have donated their time and talent. This is where the Internet community is at it's best. Like everyone here I own my share of books. I just got done moving and I'll have to move again soon... SO, that is what got me focused on going with scanning my books. Then I will give most of them to a library for others to enjoy.

I am going to be one of those people who will tinker and work hard to figure out a way to automate the page turning. So, for anyone interested in the automation piece, I'm interested as well.

I am interested in trying it with vacuum air flow to turn the page; and I believe I can hold the pages down with vacuum as well based on some experiments that I did with the vacuum. I tried it using a small paperback book, which would be the hardest to work with I think, and I was able to get the pages to hold down fairly well with just one nozzle... so I am curious how well it would hold the pages down by surrounding all sizes with the vacuum air flow and also suck the book down to the back through holes in the cradle. Otherwise, i'll go with holding the pages down with fingers, and then use vacuum to lift the page.

I know a little bit about electronics... enough to hack my way around... but only a beginner. But I love working with electronics, so this will be a fun project. I program a little bit in C#... again learning. I used to be a programmer many years ago and then went into management, so I have the aptitude...but I don't have the hours of experience doing it anymore. I'm an inventor at heart and so working in this is going to be very fun for me. I have AutoCAD 2010 and learning how to use that as well.

I'm looking forward to meeting everyone and I hope to contribute something to this great work.

So, I'll start reading and posting.

Mark Main

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E-book readers owned: Used to have a PRS-500
Number of books owned: 600
Country: United States

Re: Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

Post by daniel_reetz » 20 Oct 2010, 02:58

You guys are all awesome and I'm so glad you've taken the time to share your stories and contribute here. Welcome to all new members and please keep us all updated with your builds and developments... the new ideas we have around here lately are just fantastic. This place is really buzzing.

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Joined: 19 Oct 2010, 11:57

Re: Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

Post by xeviousx » 25 Oct 2010, 10:05

Hi All,

My name is David, based in Ireland,

been lurking here for a few months, intrigued to find that a book scanner could be built when i was researching the purchase of one for my department in work, I have now constructed most of the 'new standard', just awaiting glass to arrive to finish.

I would like to thank all of those who contribute and make the forum such a useful information trove.

(basically all queries that i had have been answered somewhere in the forum)hence lack of posting)

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Joined: 30 Oct 2010, 23:56
Number of books owned: 0
Location: Austin, Texas, USA

Re: Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

Post by vitorio » 31 Oct 2010, 20:29

Hi, all, I'm here because there's a bunch of out-of-copyright design books that I'd like to liberate. :)

I didn't see anyone here talking about it, so I ordered this book scanning platform to try it out and get my feet wet in this whole business: http://www.ponoko.com/design-your-own/p ... m-kit-3150

It's an all-acrylic scanning platform, laser-cut and sold through Ponoko, an on-demand fabrication service, for $70. It's hard to tell in the photos, but it does come with a secondary platen to hold the pages open with, and they recommend photographing in a dark room with a single light source above the book, and a curtain above the camera to reduce reflections.

Here's what it looks like before I take all the paper off the acrylic and glue it together: http://vi.to/scan1 (housecat for scale)

I was hoping it'd work without glue, so I could transport it flat and assemble it on site, but some of the parts are too small for that. Still, all acrylic means it's light, at least. Assembles very quickly. I picked up some silicone something-or-other at Home Depot and I'll assemble it properly soon.

There's only a platform for a single camera, and there's no built-in lighting, and I don't know the quality of the acrylic, but I'll post the results in the right forum once I get it put together and I try it out.

I'm kinda holding out for the bklib kit (bookliberator.org), as that seems to be a lot more compact than the usual designs here, and I'd rather buy a kit than build something from scratch (I'm not really interested in the build, I'm interested in the digitization), but I may do it myself if they take much longer!

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Re: Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

Post by Innov8r » 01 Nov 2010, 01:06

Hi Dave, Hi Vitorio,
Definitely tell us how that Ponoko works out! I'm especially interested to hear how it flows without a tower to hold the upper platen. Very helpful house cat you have there. No doubt useful for far more than merely providing a size reference. :-)

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Joined: 04 Mar 2014, 00:53

Re: Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

Post by DonnaA » 05 Nov 2010, 13:12

Hi, I'm DonnaA. I'm very happy to find this forum. I learned several useful DIY scanner ideas from Instructables, and now finding this website is like finding the mother lode of expertise in exactly the area that is of interest to me right now!

I live in Colorado and I'm working on a book scanning project for a hospital in Leogane, Haiti. The project will ultimately involve scanning about 80,000 handwritten patient records (in French), bringing that information into an open source medical records database (French, Kreyol, and English), and organizing that database to be a useful resource for the medical professionals and researchers associated with the hospital.

At this point, I am just beginning to put together a digital camera-based scanner that we can test thoroughly here in Colorado, and then take or send to our colleagues in Haiti. I have several questions that I'll post in the appropriate threads.



Re: Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

Post by yamanassaf » 07 Nov 2010, 03:24

I am a biology student and I use my tablet pc extensively for note taking and reading textbooks. I normally buy textbooks from vitalsource.com if they are available because they are cheaper and they save trees however some textbooks are not digitized and I ought to buy them (very expensive and heavy to carry arround), so I started to look for ways to digitize books that are not available digitally else where, and also some professors wouldn't allow me to use my tablet pc in class so I end up scanning my notes using a laser scanner (waste of time). Your website (diybookscanner.org) has inspired me !

I tried various types of laser scanners to scan notes written in pencil and almost all of them failed to produce a readable image except one scanner ( will share scan comparison samples on a different post). I came to realize that only a camera could do a better job at capturing notes written in pencil. I would not be able to use a regular pen when taking lab notes because I constantly need to change information especially if I have to draw, hence it's crucial to find proper tools to capture my notes.

Finally I hope I could contribute to this forum and learn from others as much as I can.

Y. Asaf

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Re: Post something about yourself here (The Hello Thread)

Post by Buk » 09 Nov 2010, 09:36

Hello everyone. I've lurked for a while, and thought it was about time to join in.

I work for a small publisher in Canada and, like Vitorio, am interested in scanning and re-issuing books that have fallen into public domain in this country. I'm also interested in liberating myself from the physical tyranny of books and the shelf space they require...

Don't get me wrong, I still love the feel of paper and being surrounded by leather bindings. If I were rich I'd build my own personal Prunksaal. But, alas, I lack both the space and money to collect hard copies...

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