I built a new scanner

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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BillGill
Posts: 139
Joined: 18 Dec 2016, 17:13
E-book readers owned: Calibre, FBReader
Number of books owned: 7000
Country: USA

I built a new scanner

Post by BillGill »

I have been using a traditional scanner, like the one shown on the front page of the DIY Book Scanner site. However, I have a problem with it because I have a lot of books with poor gutter margins and it makes it hard to get the text in correctly. Then I found JThomas' scanner for books with text very close to the gutter (viewtopic.php?f=14&t=2549). I realized that I really needed one like it, so I built myself one on that general pattern.
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NewScanner (3).JPG (56.69 KiB) Viewed 9477 times
A few comments:

I managed to get it balanced very nicely, so that it stays in either position. That works because I used a 2 quart water bottle and as the scanner tilts the water changes position enough to move the center of mass past the pivot point.

The mirror allows me to see the display on the back of the camera when I am sitting at the operating position. I can't see great detail, but I can see if the view is properly registered and see the status of the capture.

To trigger the camera I used the trigger circuit I described in my post about a remote trigger for the Elph 160 (viewtopic.php?f=15&t=3415)

So far it seems to be working quite well. I am getting the full page right down into the margin, even with a paperback.
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dpc
Posts: 379
Joined: 01 Apr 2011, 18:05
Number of books owned: 0
Location: Issaquah, WA

Re: I built a new scanner

Post by dpc »

Good for you! Thanks for posting your build. I'm surprised more people haven't built single-page scanners based on this design. Interesting counterweight system with the water bottle - does the water slosh around when speed scanning? Would a more viscous liquid help (i.e. vegetable oil). Instead of the mirror, I think the Canon Elph cameras will output the display to a monitor.

Did you put a bar across the two arms to keep a paperback's pages from blocking the view of the camera? I thought about putting rubber band or piece of bungie cord across the platen arms to do that.

I've been toying with the idea of building one of these just to scan paperback books (i.e. small sized scanner) and make it so that the arms and platen folded over and would go into a flat wooden box that would be used as the base for the scanner. Still may fire up the table saw and prototype that design if the wife let up on the leash a bit over the next week.
Konos93a
Posts: 179
Joined: 19 Sep 2016, 10:00
E-book readers owned: kobo aura,kindle 1,kindle pw3,pocketbook inkpad 2
Number of books owned: 3000
Country: greece

Re: I built a new scanner

Post by Konos93a »

dude great job ,thanks for shearing
BillGill
Posts: 139
Joined: 18 Dec 2016, 17:13
E-book readers owned: Calibre, FBReader
Number of books owned: 7000
Country: USA

Re: I built a new scanner

Post by BillGill »

I don't have any problem with the water sloshing around, but then I don't really go for speed. I typically get around 200 to 300 pages per hour. It is probably a little higher than that, but I figure I get one book scanned in less than an hour. That is fast enough for me, since I don't really need to get them done in a hurry. The long end of the stick is still the editing and conversion to EPUB format. As you are probably aware this requires reading it over and over looking for errors. Personally I have never gotten it to where there aren't any errors at all.

I did take your advice and put a piece of plywood across under the bars to hold the pages down. Without that the pages had a tendency to bulge up into the camera view.

The Elph cameras do have a video output, but it comes out on the same mini USB connector that the remote trigger uses. The USB connector has extra pins on the back side of the connector. That means you have to build a special cable. I found directions on how to do it someplace, but can't remember where and can't find it immediately. It starts with buying a video output cable and opening the connector to hook the remote release to the USB pins. It is a bit of a kludge, and I didn't really want to get into that fine a bit of work. The connector is pretty small to be cutting open and then soldering on.

Bill
dpc
Posts: 379
Joined: 01 Apr 2011, 18:05
Number of books owned: 0
Location: Issaquah, WA

Re: I built a new scanner

Post by dpc »

BillGill wrote: 06 May 2017, 18:21 ...

The Elph cameras do have a video output, but it comes out on the same mini USB connector that the remote trigger uses. The USB connector has extra pins on the back side of the connector. That means you have to build a special cable. I found directions on how to do it someplace, but can't remember where and can't find it immediately. It starts with buying a video output cable and opening the connector to hook the remote release to the USB pins. It is a bit of a kludge, and I didn't really want to get into that fine a bit of work. The connector is pretty small to be cutting open and then soldering on.

Bill
A mini USB breakout board might make hacking that custom trigger cable a little easier.
BillGill
Posts: 139
Joined: 18 Dec 2016, 17:13
E-book readers owned: Calibre, FBReader
Number of books owned: 7000
Country: USA

Re: I built a new scanner

Post by BillGill »

I'm not sure that board would help. I found the link to the hack that gets both the USB and video out at the same time. It is at http://www.achillies.com/CHDK_Files/USB_Splitter.htm. As you can see it is rather an intricate hack. I'm not really ready to take on that job. If somebody wants to build one and sell it to me for a reasonable price I would consider it.

Bill
dpc
Posts: 379
Joined: 01 Apr 2011, 18:05
Number of books owned: 0
Location: Issaquah, WA

Re: I built a new scanner

Post by dpc »

Ah the pleasure of having to deal with nonstandard connectors! I did a little looking around on the Internet and found this. A little pricey though.
BillGill
Posts: 139
Joined: 18 Dec 2016, 17:13
E-book readers owned: Calibre, FBReader
Number of books owned: 7000
Country: USA

Re: I built a new scanner

Post by BillGill »

I do love the way everybody sticks right to the standards so that we can easily connect all our electronics together. :(

That does look interesting. The price is a little high, but considering the problems I can see in making one according the directions, it might not be too high. The biggest problem I see is shipping. I've haven't bought anything from an overseas source, so I don't know what happens there. Then there are some adapters to buy. A USB adapter cable to get their MiniB USB connector to a regular USB connector, and a plug jack to RCA connectors. Not a huge problem, but you do still need to find them. Overall it looks like a reasonable solution to the problem.

Bill
Konos93a
Posts: 179
Joined: 19 Sep 2016, 10:00
E-book readers owned: kobo aura,kindle 1,kindle pw3,pocketbook inkpad 2
Number of books owned: 3000
Country: greece

Re: I built a new scanner

Post by Konos93a »

i send an email on sparkfun for the HTC ExtUSB 11 Pin USB Connector with Breakout .
they told me that there is no more this type of connector in the market so they could not produce more.
dpc
Posts: 379
Joined: 01 Apr 2011, 18:05
Number of books owned: 0
Location: Issaquah, WA

Re: I built a new scanner

Post by dpc »

Konos93a wrote: 14 May 2017, 07:31 i send an email on sparkfun for the HTC ExtUSB 11 Pin USB Connector with Breakout .
they told me that there is no more this type of connector in the market so they could not produce more.
The connectors are still available though. This may work if you're steady with a soldering iron.
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