This instructable will guide you to build a 3D scanner for less than $30, or even $12 if you already have a USB webcam.
Seeing the price tag and limitations of commercial scanners I decided to challenge myself to build my own. It had to be cheaper and easy for anybody to build one using a 3D printer.
The "Sardauscan" is a laser scanner, comparable to other professional laser scanners but for less than 20-30 times the price, and it has twice the number of lasers.
My design principles were:
· Keep it simple
· Keep it low cost
· Make it evolutive
· Provide a complete solution
The scanner is completely open source and open hardware:
· The "Sardauscan" software is written in C# - the full source code is available.
· You can write plugins for your own hardware or for your tasks.
The software allows you to scan, smooth, build meshes and export to various formats.
How does it work?
The principle of a 3D laser scanner is simple.
· A picture of the object is taken without any lasers firing
· One laser is switched on and another picture is taken
· Computing the difference between the two images, a laser trace (profile of the object) is obtained
· By knowing the positions of the camera and laser you can derive the 3D coordinates of all the points on the profile
· You do the same for all the lasers, turn the table and repeat the process until the table has made a full revolution
And there you go, you have a complete point cloud representing your object.