Preparing to Scan

The process of preparing to scan is described in this short video.

Archivist Quill: Preparing to Scan from Jonathon Duerig on Vimeo.


Hi. I'm Jonathon Duerig with Tenrec Builders and this tutorial is about how to set up your scan to get started with a new book.

So, I've got my Archivist Quill here that is all booted up, but we're not ready to scan yet. So the very first thing that we're going to do is to take our two cradle stops and snug them up right here down at the bottom so that the cradle stays in place.

Let me take out the cradle base with the cradle wings and put them on some other flat surface. And we need to adjust the size of this cradle trench so that it fits the spine of our book.

So our book is right here. "Memories of Fifty Years", its a memoire from 1909. And we want to scan this. So, if we just put this right here, then obviously that's not going to fly. So what we want to do is we want to do is to loosen both finger clamps at the same time and move this out. So we want about half of it to be on this side and the other half on that side, so we want it to be approximately symmetric. It doesn't have to be super-precise. And we'll do the same over here until we get to a point where it looks like the spine will stay open and we'll tighten up this side.

And then, now we're ready to do the next step. So let's put this back on the scanner. The trick here is to make sure that all of the wheels are actually on the rails. And things go back smoothly. And now we have our book. But, we are not quite ready because this is going to be a bear to lift up and down because of the weight of everything.

That's where the counterweight bag comes in. The counterweight bag is actually a sleeve. Look inside, that's nothing up my sleeve. And the idea is that you take anything you have around that is cylindrical and you put it in the sleeve to counterweight the weight of the cradle and the book. So we're going to put in some of these water bottles because that is what I have lying around. A bottle full of sand would work. A bottle full of water and sand is even heavier so that would work. But anything that is cylindrical you can slide into the sleeve.

So now I have three things. I'm going to undo my cradle stops for the moment and we'll see how this feels. You can see that it is still overweighted by the cradle. So I'm going to put in a few more. We'll slide this into the middle. And this one towards the end. And this one towards the end too, the other end. And you want this to be pretty symmetric because it will wobble back and forth if it isn't symmetric.

So this is actually much better. So this might actually be a little bit too counterweighted. Because what you want is to be able to press down with your hand. And then when you release, when you stop pressing down, you want it to come down automatically. This is actually a little bit too much so we'll take one of these out. We'll take out this one and we'll move this one kind of to the end.

This is better. So we have a reasonable amount of pressure down here. And then when we release it, it kind of naturally goes back. If it were perfectly balanced, it won't do that because the friction of the whole system would keep it in place. And we don't want that.

So, now we've got the cradle properly positioned and properly counterweighted. So now we will begin using Pi Scan.

Hit begin. First of all it is going to search for storage. And here is our SD card reader right here. So we want to insert our storage SD card. It has found the storage. So now we hit next. It says no cameras found. So now we need to turn on our cameras. Found both cameras.

You probably want to check the zoom. You can adjust the zoom. So we can adjust the zoom. Hold this down. Do a test shot. There we go. And then it will give us a preview. We can see if we are too zoomed in or not zoomed in enough. Usually you can set the zoom once and if you use the same SD card over and over, the configuration is saved on the SD card so you don't have to do this every time.

But, this is... looking at this, it is zoomed in pretty far. I haven't aligned this camera super well. But you can see that the whole page is still visible. And this looks pretty good. So I'll just leave this as the zoom value for this. Hit done.

Now, we want to make sure the focus is right. So we'll hit refocus here. And we'll take another thing. We're not actually scanning anything, this is just a random page in the middle. The important thing about this is that this page is should have text on the whole page. Otherwise, if it is the end of a chapter and there is just one line at the top or something, then the autofocus where its locking the focus may end up in a weird state where it thinks the focal length is different than it is because there is no text where it is trying to focus.

So zoom in and the focus there looks goo. The focus there looks good.

So now we're ready to capture. So that's the end of getting ready to capture.