Make a 3D Scanner for 60€ Using Old Hardware

3d laser scanner

[Till Handel] just put the finishing touches on a paper he wrote about how to build a cheap 3D scanner — mostly out of spare parts.

Using parts from old printers and notebooks, he’s cobbled together this rather rough-looking laser scanner. But don’t be fooled by its looks! It’s capable of scanning 360° around itself at distances from 0.3 – 5m, making it an excellent candidate for scanning rooms.

It uses a line laser and a webcam mounted on an arm driven by a stepper motor, which looks like it’s out of an old optical drive. An Arduino Uno and an A4988POW stepper driver control the system. The paper (Caution: PDF) is very detailed and published under GPLv3 (a general public license).

It works the same as many 3D scanners — a line laser provides a 2D profile/outline of the object being scanned that the camera picks up. As the system (or object) rotates, new profiles are recorded and sewn together to form a complete 3D image.

3d laser scanner diagram

To increase the resolution and accuracy of the scanner, you can always put a better camera on the end!

Comments

  1. abba jesus says:

    60 EUR buys me food for the whole month (I live in Poland). I think i’ll pass on that 3D scanner.

  2. Alex says:

    Webcam and line laser are mixed up on the diagram lol

  3. medix says:

    How the hell is this ‘cheap’ when it costs 60 euro? There’s no more than 20 euro (or less if you can scavenge) of parts here!

  4. Hello everyone,
    I uploaded a newer version of the paper:

    http://alicedownthecoffeepot.files.wordpress.com/2014/04/documentation_laser_scanner1.pdf

    (The makefile-code described in the old version contained unnecessary compiler intructions related to the ROOT-libs that were not used in the final version of the program.)

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