Sweet cost-saving hack from our very own Andrew Lewis over on CRAFT. Dedicated negative scanners are expensive, but Andrew’s downloadable papercraft adapter allows good-quality slide and negative digitizing with common flatbed equipment. Cut the adapter from silver card stock, fold and tape it up, and position it over the slide or negative to be scanned on the glass. The scan is taken with the lid open (obviously), and negatives can then be inverted and touched-up using common image-editing software.

Sean Michael Ragan

Sean Michael Ragan

I am descended from 5,000 generations of tool-using primates. Also, I went to college and stuff. I am a long-time contributor to MAKE magazine and makezine.com. My work has also appeared in ReadyMade, c’t – Magazin für Computertechnik, and The Wall Street Journal.


  • http://twitter.com/lungofish Joe

    Brilliantly clever idea! I’ve tried a bunch of homebrew solutions for this, but none of mine worked that well. Eventually I knuckled under and bought a scanner with a transparency hood.

  • http://twitter.com/SquittersTweet Archibald Tuttle

    I definitely have to try this!

  • http://twitter.com/SquittersTweet Archibald Tuttle

    I definitely have to try this!

  • Anonymous

    That looks very much like the paper packaging for a sandwich.  I wonder if I could use one of those instead…

    Argh, mayo on my scanner!

  • http://twitter.com/basbulet A Baskoro Junianto

    Thanks for this useful information

  • Ron Luce

    This didn’t work for me — no usable images. I don’t know if I’m doing something wrong or my scanner is different.