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Scanning Apps for Historic Project


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I have an oversize and fragile historic atlas book that is a family heirloom, and I've used it a few times in some layouts. I would like to make a comprehensive copy of the entire 15"x18" county atlas and then give the original back to my brother. Do any of you have experience with iPhone scanning apps or even photographing something so large? Scanning services appear to be around $3.00 per page for something this big, and I'm not sure I want to do that for such a lengthy book. The maps and info pages in this book are sold online for anywhere from $10 to $90, depending on size, so that is out of the question as well. Any suggestions are welcome. Thanks!

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I was going to suggest a Flip-Pal mobile scanner but appears the company decided to close in 2020. It was a small portable flatbed scanner. You could scan sections of something and then the software would stitch it together. Sorry not much help. Too bad we don’t live close by, I’d let you borrow mine. 

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Oh, darn - I was going to suggest the Flip-Pal scanner but didn't realize they closed the company either.    I have one and love it but I'm not sure the software works on my new laptop and Mac OS.   Like Kelly, I'd be happy to lend you mine, wish we were closer!  
I wonder if there is any other type of product like this or if there are people selling new ones still?  It really does work well.  I've scanned large photos, not as large as yours - 8"x10" and my baby book pages about 8"x18" (guessing here) and it knit them together seamlessly.  

This was an 8x10 photo, the flip pal only scans 5"x7".    So it was a bunch of pieces that when you put in the software were knit together.  The only issue I had was it only uses batteries (AA or AA?) so if you are doing a lot at a time you can use up a lot.   But, I never had that trouble.

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@MariJ @ladyscrapalot Thank you for the information on the portable bed scanners. I haven't heard of this scan and stitch software and will need to see if there is something compatible with my existing flatbed scanner. The problem is that the book is heavy, unwieldy and fragile and will still probably be too difficult to hold steady for several scans on each page. But this has definitely given me a direction to explore! Much appreciated.

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I know the cameras on the iPhones are excellent these days, but I don't have an app recommendation.  I know the notes app can scan.  There is one called Cam Scanner but again, I don't know it's capabilities.   So basically, I've been no help...LOL  Good luck and keep us posted.

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You might be able to find a used one say on ebay or amazon. I think I saw one ebay for around $75 which is about half of what I paid. Good luck in what ever you decide.

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2 hours ago, Celestine said:

The problem is that the book is heavy, unwieldy and fragile and will still probably be too difficult to hold steady for several scans on each page.

Another advantage to the Flip-Pal was that you could use it ON the document, too.   Like your book would be open, you'd turn the Flip-Pal over and onto the page and all over the page and scan that way.   No need to put the big book on the scanner.  I've done it both ways.

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2 minutes ago, MariJ said:

Another advantage to the Flip-Pal was that you could use it ON the document, too.   Like your book would be open, you'd turn the Flip-Pal over and onto the page and all over the page and scan that way.   No need to put the big book on the scanner.  I've done it both ways.

That would be handy!

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You've probably already thought of this, but maybe a local museum or university library might be a source of information? They can tell you what they use for their fragile manuscripts, and... keeping fingers crossed here... it's an app or something simple you could use as well. (It's a long shot, I know, but one can always hope.)

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2 hours ago, Florida granny said:

You've probably already thought of this, but maybe a local museum or university library might be a source of information? They can tell you what they use for their fragile manuscripts, and... keeping fingers crossed here... it's an app or something simple you could use as well. (It's a long shot, I know, but one can always hope.)

I have thought about going to our local historical society, which has an extensive library, and asking them. However, I think if they had something they use, there would be a LOT more of their collection available digitally. And it really isn't. There are services and special manuscript scanning stands, but they are PRICEY for a single use, personal project. Thanks for the nudge, though, Diane.

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