It’s something I know I’ll end up having to do shortly for some of the aeroplanes I’m selling, especially some of the higher value ones. The only broker/dealer that I can see who does it is Wild Blue Aircraft in Kansas. Given that each page could have multiple logbook certs stapled to it and release notes galore, it’s not a job I’m looking forward to doing.
Has anyone used readily available scanners, such as book scanners to do aircraft logs? I’d be interested to hear what you used and how long it took to scan them.
Do you have to scan all of the pages, or just the most recent W&B and latest annuals?
I did it, but ended up photographing my pages instead and converting them to pdf – much quicker. Scanning logbooks from an old frame that has multiple logbooks dating back maybe 40-50 years is a lot of work. Probably a weeks worth of work on a slow desktop scanner.
I recently had to scan several pilot logbooks, which is a similar thing, and I ended up doing the same as Adam: photographing them using my phone, conversion into PDF, cropping as needed. Took me 25 min per logbook of 146 pages (each flight placed on two of those).
if you are going to do that, why not use one of the many free iOS or Android scanners that automatically convert? They work a treat…
What takes the time is shooting the various logbook inserts. The average logbook (on a plane which gets proper maintenance and the work is properly recorded) is full of inserts like this
In many cases the maintenance company retains the logbooks and then it is more likely the stuff will be written in, but you quickly run out of room for the detail of the work (and then you end up with various work packs to shoot as well).
I backup my logbooks by shooting them with a phone. It’s easily good enough for backup purposes. The jpegs live offsite, in a fireproof safe.
Scanning is worth doing for high quality stuff but takes for ever. My A4 scanner is collecting dust
If OTOH you are talking about scanning logbooks for OCR and transferring the data to an online logbook, that’s a different thing.
f OTOH you are talking about scanning logbooks for OCR and transferring the data to an online logbook, that’s a different thing.
I’m only doing this to give prospective purchasers a perspective on the aeroplanes.
OK; for pics to PDF I just shoot with a phone and I use an app called Camscanner. It squares up the pages (normally one is shooting from an angle, to get the right light etc) and squirts out a nice PDF at the end. One of the best uses for a phone
It is free although it adds its logo to the bottom of each page, and shows some ads when it starts up. You can pay to stop those but it isn’t a one-off payment (it is a non insignificant monthly rental) so I am not doing that. I always buy apps but only if it is a one-off payment, and would not mind a similar app which can be purchased with a one-off payment (android of course )
However for your purpose William you don’t need squared-up photos. Also these apps which square up the pages don’t work properly with anything other than very regular (rectangular) page shapes on a uniformly coloured background with no confusing lines. Things like fold-out inserts will confuse the hell out of them. If it was me I would just shoot the logbooks into a PDF without squaring up the pages (that may be a config option in Camscanner too).
For IOS there are other apps I am sure.
Regardless, if you shoot hundreds of jpegs you can combine them into a PDF instantly with Acrobat or similar tools. A very old Acrobat (the whole CS2 suite actually) is on Adobe’s website for free (well, free to users of other versions, technically). They put it up there following the uproar which happened when they killed their licensing server for CS3 and earlier (a really dumb concept).
I reckon 1hr for me to shoot all my logbooks since 2002, >2000hrs, all 3 aircraft ones. Less if you can get someone to turn the pages while you shoot.
We use a big flat bed scanner at the office for lots of stuff as we have pretty much moved paperless, but it can be very fiddly and time consuming with the sort of documented books that constitute logs.
We now break down pretty much everything into sheets and also use a high speed automatic scan feeder which works great, but of course only once the material is broken down, which I appreciate is not possible with logs.
I suspect there is no easy solution that isnt time consuming and even then not entirely perfect as even with flat bed scanners it can be difficult to organise the documents so all the parts are propery captured.
I use an app called Camscanner. It squares up the pages (normally one is shooting from an angle, to get the right light etc) and squirts out a nice PDF at the end. One of the best uses for a phone
That is way cool and just what I needed !
THANKS for the PIREP !!!