Introduction: Flat Bed Scanner As a Propagator

This was something I kinda fell on during a stripping and scrapping session. I had 2 old non functional flat bed scanners which I was robbing for parts for another project and when presented with a 5 minute break by tea and biscuits courtesy of my wife it all fell into place so the second scanner became the subject of this 'Ible.

Step 1: Tools Required

The tools required for this 'ible are as follows:-
A screwdriver to fit the screws holding the casing together.(mine was a phillips but yours maybe different)
A pair of pliers (normal combination will be fine)
A fine flat bladed screwdriver (nothing flashy as it is only to pry the retainers off )
Compost (multi purpose/ seed )
Seeds(flowers or veggies)
A hot cup of tea (required equipment)not shown

Step 2: Into the Unknown !

If you lift the cover on the top of the case then at the back by the hinges you should find some holes. At the bottom of these holes should be 2 screws, take them out with your screwdriver. Lift off the cover of the scanner usually by lifting at the back of the case at the screw end. then pull towards you and the front should pop free. If you experience serious trouble then don't force the case to open as the glassey bit is glass. Take a second slow look around the cover of the case to find any more screws and if you find any then remove them. I don't want loads of you telling me you lacerated your wrists/ chests as you pulled the case open like a raging bull, You hurt yourself it's your problem, be careful and guard against any problems by looking twice and be gentle. Take it easy and it will come apart nicely and don't panic if the lid that would cover the page being scanned comes off in your hand ,This is meant to happen ! But later on

Step 3: Gut It Like the Scurvey Dog It Is !!!! Yarhhhh

Right now comes the fun bit look around and unscrew all the screws you can find. and remove any parts that look like they have come loose. Have as much or as little fun (destruction) as you like here it's all gotta come out .

The big long steel bars should just pop out with some gentle persuasion and a little brute force in the upwards direction. Most of the electronics comes out on this carriage but there is a long cable attached to it which needs some fiddling with to remove from the clips in the case. The drive system for the whole affair is going to be stopping you from placing the whole shooting match at the side of your case so follow the belt to one end (doesn't matter which) remove the thin plastic clip from the top of the wheel the belt wraps around with the thin screwdriver or a pair of pliers. remove the wheel and the belt should go limp and allow you to lay the contents of the box down to the side with no further problems.

To the remaining electronics!

This should just slide out on the backing plate. Unscrew it from the backing plate as you will need it later. Remove any further screws retaining the stepper motor and remove the motor/ drive gears any further gubbins left in the case and it should look like this :-

Step 4: Now for the Green and Pleasant Part

So now the case is empty and devoid of all things electronic replace the backing plate in it's slot and cover the holes with some paper. A bit Heath Robinson but it does the job. Now fill the lower tray of the case with compost (I used multi purpose) and smooth out to a nice level layer in the case. Mark and sow the rows of plant seeds that are required in your version of this 'ible be it flowers or veggies. I used tomatoes and cucumbers. Tomatoes because I needed some and cucumbers as I have never got them to germinate before.(have now!!!!)

Step 5: Almost There !

Take the cover and the lid assembly and separate them be it with a screwed connection or clips. remove the plastic sheet carefully from the inside of the lid. Slide this under the lower tray of the case as a drip tray.

Water the seed tray with a fine sprinkler as you don't want to wash the seeds away and over your best shag pile carpet.

Cover with the glassey bit still in the cover and place somewhere nice and warm to get it all going. (Not the oven though I have found gas mark 6 /350 C to have a detrimental effect on both the plastic and the seeds if you can find them and also on wedded bliss this for some reason is severely frowned upon by my wife/ head tea maker)

Step 6: Tidying Up the Loose Ends

Some loose ends to tidy up :-

Dispose of the contents of your scanner in the most sound way you can think of (recycling plants for these things exist and we should all make more use of them ) A quick phone call to your local council will present the best place to recycle them.
Or reuse them in another project ! if your clever enough (I'm not so any help would be gratefully received)

Drink your cup of tea (should still be warm if not hot)

Watch your seeds germinate and water them when they look dry

3 days passed and the tomatoes have germinated well in advance of their counterparts in a normal propagator (beginners luck?) and even the cucumbers have put in an appearance a week later.

I think I'm going to call my first Cucumber plant Ernest after the great Ernest Shackelton

Have many Great cups of tea and admire your seedlings until they need pricking out and go on to the big boys place (the green house).

I hope you enjoyed this 'Ible (my first you could tell right?) And happy recycling