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DocuCam Laptop Document Camera
Customizable Laptop Document Camera MirrorEducation
Creative Commons Attribution
You can adapt, share or use this work commercially as long as you attribute the creator.
Have a webcam on your laptop?
Have, or have access to, a 3D printer?
Now you have a document camera for teaching!
Inspired by John Umekubo's pocket document camera, this holds a mirror to turn your laptop webcam into a document camera for teaching. This is a from-scratch customizer design that will let you adjust the mirror angle to fit, including temporarily flipping the mirror out of the way to use the webcam as a webcam.
Choose the size that best matches the thickness of your laptop monitor lid. For example, if your lid is about 6mm thick, choose
DocuCam-5-7.stl because 6 is between 5mm and 7mm. If you want to customize more, you can download DocuCam.scad and use the Customizer feature of OpenSCAD, or even modify the code and remix it into something new!
Not sure how thick your monitor lid is? Print the monitor lid gauge and slide it over your monitor. The number next to the smallest gap that fits is the best fit. For example, if that's the gap labeled "5", chose
DocuCam-4-6.stl to print.
The only downside is that the mirrors are sold in sets of 60, so you really need to make lots of these and give them away to all the teachers you know who are desperate for a document camera.
What you show will be in mirror image unless you use some extra software. See John Umekubo's blog post for more information: https://johnumekubo.com/2020/09/07/the-pocket-document-camera/
If you have suggested improvements to the design, I'll be pleased to look at merge requests at https://gitlab.com/mcdanlj/docucam
Materials and methods
The default 2" mirror size fits a set of 2" craft mirrors sold in sets of 60 at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07T8YJQZS
Other sizes exist and this design is intended to adjust reasonably to other mirror sizes within reason. Thick glass mirrors, however, will probably result in "ghosting" on the resulting image as there will be reflections off both the front surface and the rear mirror surface, as well as a green tint that will be more pronounced the thicker the glass.
I print in PETG with 20% infill and .3mm layers. The layers are actually used as a ratcheting retention device, so do not smooth the layers out around the axle.
Snap the two halves together, oriented as printed and moved toward each other. The parts should splay apart a bit; this is by design to hold the angle you set.
Use double-sized tape, epoxy, hot glue, or super glue to attach the mirror only to the center of the space. Don't fill the whole space with glue. The mirror should fit inside the registration box.
Gently slip the back piece onto the top of the monitor, centered on the camera, making sure not to obscure or damage the camera.
Then, since you purchased a 60-pack of mirrors, make 59 more of these for your friends, family, and all their teachers. Just get measurements for their laptops first!
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