These are tutorials are on how to scan, clean up and restore old plans, using your PC and image-editing software. Hopefully they are of some use. I started out writing just about Photoshop, since that's all I know, but then Hogal kindly added some too, and he uses Gimp. Most recently (June 2016), theshadow added his tutorial too.

Tutorials by Steve

Scan -> Photoshop -> PDF

For a start I would recommend everyone to read Planeman's excellent tutorial doc "Restoring plans using Photoshop" which is available here: www.rclibrary.co.uk/title_details.asp?ID=1056 - that's where I started. There isn't much I will be saying that he didn't say already.


01 Introduction
Covering basic ideas and terminology. This just covers the aims, the approach and some unfamiliar (probably) terminology.

02 Curtiss Jenny
A complete real world example, step by step. Covers how to import, convert to greyscale, rotate to alignment with horizontal, then resize plan to full-size, posterize, export to PDF.

03 Dream Weaver
Covering how to deal with separate article pages. Using the ColorHalftone filter on photos. Appending 2 pages together into 1 pdf file using Pdfsam.

04 Little Herbie
Covering how to invert blueprints, also aligning and scaling then stitching together 3 separate scanned sections into 1 complete finished drawing.

05 Northrop F-5
Resampling downwards for more clarity (and lower filesize) with a plan that has been scanned and bitmapped at very high resolution.

06 Aichi Val
Removing a speckled noisy background from a plan, using the Dust & Scratches filter. Also working on two layers and creating a finished layer from the best sections of both.

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I sometimes get asked how to clean up and restore old plans, using Photoshop. Hopefully these tutorials will help. I am not a Photoshop expert, I am just telling you how I do it - which in many ways is plodding and slow. There will be smarter people out there who do this better and more elegantly.

These tutorials are written for users with Photoshop, because that's the software I have, and I use. I can't help you really if you're using an alternative bitmap editor like say Gimp or PaintShopPro, because I'm not familiar with them. They will get you there, I'm sure. But I won't be helping you out with that. Sorry. Anyone out there keen to write up and submit some tutorials based on alternative software? I'll host it if you post it.


Got feedback? Got suggestions to improve these pages? Email me at admin@outerzone.co.uk


Tutorials by Hogal

Scan -> Gimp -> TurboCAD -> PDF

Hogalised Drawings 1 : Scanning  (PDF 2.2MB)
I thought it best to start at the raw plan stage and how to scan. In this tutorial the plan is the Slick Schick published in June 1968 Aeromodeller.

Hogalised Drawings 2 : Gimp  (PDF 1.2MB)
This session covers using Gimp to produce a stitched together plan of the Slick Schick ready to import into TurboCad. Even better, if you cant wait and feel the need to cut balsa immediately then by the end of this tutorial you will have a plan to work with.

The final stage will be the traced line drawing using TurboCad.

At the end we will have gone from the free plan in the Aeromodeller right through to the final Hogalised drawing.



Test (unfinished) pages:

Hogalised Drawings 3


Tutorial by theshadow

Scan -> Photoshop -> PDF

Scanning theshadow way (PDF 20 KB)

Excellent document, thanks to theshadow. Covers basic requirements (including computer hardware and the scanner itself) and then goes on to detail the techniques of scanning, use of PhotoShop to clean and scale plans, then finally exporting to PDF.

"Attached my magnum opus of scan techniques. I promised Steve I would cobble some thoughts together a couple of years ago. My starting size was seven pages. Much editing and paring down resulted in four pages of the essentials. I have scanned my last 10 magazine plans using my steps outlined, to double check for accuracy ...I hope my 'opus' is helpful to those who read it. theshadow"