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Scanning glass negatives

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    Big Bri
    Big Bri  1315605 forum posts United Kingdom
    20 May 2012 - 10:37 AM

    I have about 100 glass negatives I want to scan, but the LiDE scanner I replaced my Epson with when I moved to Win7 doesn't have a transparency adapter. Can anyone recommend a scanner that would do the job for me, with Windows 7?

    (Better still, lend me one Wink)

    (Also, if anyone can recommend a company that would do it cheaper than me buying a scanner)

    This is not an on-going need, I just want to scan in my great-grandfather's photographs (the few that I have).

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    franken e2 Member 123173 forum postsfranken vcard Wales4 Constructive Critique Points
    20 May 2012 - 10:43 AM

    I had a similar situation a while back. I had an old light box so I experimented photographing the slides using it. They turned out really well.


    ensign e2 Member 7185 forum postsensign vcard United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
    20 May 2012 - 11:15 AM

    I carried out a project like this few years back. I used my Epson scanner and treated the glass negs, as transparencies. Worked quite well. Good luck.

    Stillbase  362 forum posts Wales
    20 May 2012 - 12:02 PM

    I did this several years ago on 90 year old quarter and half plate B/W negatives using a standard epson photo scanner. I used it in 35 mm transparency mode and blanked off the rest of the scanner base plate so I could position the plate accurately. I then scanned the first part of the plate, then the remainder on the next scan. For the half plate size it took 3 scans to cover the full plate. I then used the photoshop elements photomerge panorama to stitch them together to give me back the original photo. It is long winded, but it worked out very well - you can't see the joins.

    keith selmes
    20 May 2012 - 12:42 PM

    Epson V700 is the obvious choice, but I would normally use a lightbox and Eos 5D.

    It would partly depend on size - plates are usually about 3x4 or 6x4 inches, or about 2x2 for projection, but they can be 4x5, or 2x3 or even smaller, and they can be 8x10 or larger.

    The V700 can do up to 8x10, so all the usual sizes. I expect it's better than a digital photo, but a lot more time consuming, and if you buy one especially, a lot more expensive.

    20 May 2012 - 1:12 PM

    A couple of us from my Camera club are busy copying around 6,000 glass negs for our local Archive Centre.
    So far we've only used a light box, copy stand and Photoshop to do the conversion. Working very well and the archivists are happy.

    Big Bri
    Big Bri  1315605 forum posts United Kingdom
    20 May 2012 - 1:59 PM

    Thanks all. I might borrow the club lightbox then. The plates are 3.5 x 2.5

    I do have a rather large (probably 30 or so) flatbed scanner collection at work, but they are all fairly old and probably won't work on Windows 7. Actually, I have a few HP G4050's which might work...

    Romar  8 England
    21 May 2012 - 12:30 AM

    I've been using a Microtek ScanMaker 8700 flatbed scanner for some years to scan glass negs and am very satisfied with the results. This includes an 8x10 inch glass film holder (a glass slide-in tray for non-reflective material such as large negs and transparencies) which has a deep enough frame to allow glass negs to sit on the holder without interfering with the insertion/removal of the holder. The 8700 is no longer a current model but its replacement appears to be of the same general design although I don't know if it includes the glass holder. AGX Imaging are very knowledgeable about Microtek and very helpful - www.agx-imaging.com - so it might be worth contacting them.

    However the Microtek isn't cheap and if the lighthbox idea works, then maybe you should go for that as a more economical solution if you don't have an ongoing need.

    Big Bri
    Big Bri  1315605 forum posts United Kingdom
    21 May 2012 - 8:00 AM

    Thanks Romar. I know AGX, used to work with them some years ago.

    LenShepherd e2 Member 62505 forum postsLenShepherd vcard United Kingdom
    21 May 2012 - 9:03 PM

    All you need is to make a card mount with an insert to match the exposed area of each slide.
    The outer mask prevents any flare light getting into the lens.
    A lightbox or maybe a north facing window make good light sources.

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