6 DIY 3D Scanners You Can Build at Home

Making a 3D mannequin of an actual object will be carried out extraordinarily quick if in case you have a 3D scanner at house. The issue is: 3D scanners are costly to purchase new.

In the event you’re searching for an answer, why not strive constructing your personal inexpensive 3D scanner at house? It may not create good 3D fashions, however it’s an economical various to purchasing a 3D scanner.

Is It Cheaper to Construct a DIY 3D Scanner?

The price of shopping for a good 3D scanner ranges from $700 to $10,000 on the highest finish. Alternatively, constructing a DIY 3D scanner can price lower than $200—some at the same time as little as $35.

Relying on the decision of your selfmade 3D scanner, you’ll nonetheless must work to tidy up the 3D mannequin in order that it may be used for issues like 3D printing, sport growth, or maybe design prototyping. However total, it should nonetheless pace up the design course of when in comparison with constructing a mannequin from scratch.

1. Low-cost 3D Printed 3D Scanner

This 3D scanner is constructed utilizing 3D printed elements, that includes each open supply software program and open supply {hardware} recordsdata. In the event you select to put in the utmost of 4 lasers, then the price of the mission is available in at $35 to $50. As soon as it is constructed, dealing with the digital scan would require some legwork to easy out. However contemplating its price ticket, it is properly value giving it a go.

You’ll find the STL recordsdata and a full construct information on Instructables. Moreover the 3D printed elements, you have to one to 4 lasers, a stepper motor, a turntable, and an Arduino Nano to carry all of it collectively. One advantage of this mission is that it has been constructed many instances by group makers, leading to loads of photographs and suggestions surrounding the mission to assist fill in any gaps.

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2. DIY 3D Scanner Utilizing a DSLR Digicam


A screenshot of a photo showing a hand holding a large 3D printed screw the size of a grapefruit

An alternative choice for constructing a 3D scanner is to make use of a DSLR digicam and a way known as photogrammetry. At its most simple, it includes taking a variety of photographs of an object from totally different angles and stitching these photographs collectively in a software program program to create a 3D mannequin.

Alongside a DSLR digicam, you have to an Arduino, a stepper motor and driver, an LCD display, and an IR LED. The objective of the {hardware} is to construct a rotating platform that strikes by set quantities in order that your digicam can {photograph} the thing in a really detailed and managed approach. You’ll find a terrific clarification of the mission on Instructables.

The true problem of this mission is available in processing the photographs. A great photogrammetry program is crucial, and that may price over $150 to license. There may be some free software program obtainable, however it could include limitations.

In the event you’re questioning if there’s another answer, you may learn our information to how one can flip on a regular basis objects into 3D fashions with out a 3D scanner.

3. Optical CT/3D Scanner With Arduino

For one thing slightly totally different, on this mission you’ll construct a 3D scanner that additionally doubles as an optical CT scanner. This kind of scanner will do the trick if in case you have objects which can be semi-transparent, like a gummy bear or a phase of orange. In any other case, you need to use this setup with the photogrammetry methodology for normal 3D scans.

The whole lot on this construct is enclosed inside a field. This permits larger management over lighting the thing to supply sharper photographs. Whereas it includes some woodworking and development, the {hardware} remains to be powered by a humble Arduino Nano, plus extra elements that you’ll find at any ironmongery shop.


An amazing information is offered on Instructables for constructing the field, alongside particulars for making a modern management panel for altering photograph parameters on the go.

4. FabScan: Raspberry Pi + Arduino 3D Scanner

This 3D scanner makes use of each a Raspberry Pi and an Arduino to construct a 3D laser scanner. What units this construct aside is that it may be operated remotely through an online browser on a cellphone.

Very similar to different DIY 3D scanners, a stepper motor and driver are used to rotate a turntable holding the thing you need to scan. Moreover, you have to a line laser and a Raspberry Pi digicam. You’ll find the information and a full elements record on Instructables.

Whereas the creators have gone with a laser-cut MDF field, you may simply as simply use spare elements mendacity across the house to create the enclosure. Alternatively, cardboard can work too, and portray it black will help in diffusing the laser mild in order that it does not intervene with the scan.


After getting a superb scan of your object, you is perhaps involved in 3D printing it. Have not acquired a 3D printer? Right here is our decide of one of the best 3D printers.

5. The Final Human Sized 3D Scanner With Raspberry Pi


A screenshot showing a realistic 3D scan of a young child sitting on the floor

Whereas most selfmade 3D scanners are constructed to seize a small object, it is also potential to construct a human-sized 3D scanner. The best way to do that is with a variety of Raspberry Pis, as you may see over on Instructables.

The maker behind this mission scaled up his 3D scanner utilizing a whopping 47 Raspberry Pis plus a Raspberry Pi digicam for every module. The objective was to make use of the photogrammetry methodology to take a photograph of his topic from each potential angle. As a result of he wished to seize a 3D mannequin of his two-year-old son, this all needed to occur immediately.

Extremely, it really works, and it really works very properly too. In case you have the time and funding to purchase a field stuffed with Raspberry Pis, you will not be upset as a result of the outcomes are spectacular. The maker says you need to use fewer Pis and cameras and nonetheless get good outcomes, particularly in case you solely have to seize the entrance of an individual’s face.

6. Standalone 3D Scanner

Perhaps you are simply after a easy and small 3D scanner you can make over the weekend. If that’s the case, then this mission will swimsuit you. This 3D scanner on Instructables is designed to be all-in-one, that means that the photographs are compiled onboard and an STL file is saved on to a reminiscence card. As an alternative of compiling the photographs in a separate photogrammetry program, this 3D scanner handles them for you.

Whereas it does not produce extremely detailed scans, it does make for a speedy technique to take a 3D mannequin straight to 3D printing. One factor to remember, nonetheless, is that the scale of the 3D scanner construction have to be saved precisely as written with a purpose to match the code.

Constructing a Home made 3D Scanner

Placing collectively a 3D scanner at house is not extraordinarily troublesome to attain. When in comparison with the costly value of business 3D scanners, it is properly value constructing a DIY 3D scanner your self.

With a Raspberry Pi or Arduino and some additional inexpensive elements, you will be properly in your technique to creating an inexpensive and superior 3D scanner.


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