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Myth: Estimating volumes of pages for budgetary purposes is simple.

Fact: Not quite. If done by service provider, overestimations may cost them the job, while underestimations may create trust problems and project disruptions. If done by client and proven wrong, it may also create trust issues such as …“you (provider) are supposed to be the expert, why didn’t you warn me?”. The following table shows useful metrics. However, to take this effort seriously, someone must decide on sample diversity and sizes, count carefully and extrapolate. Double sided pages are not trivial to account for, as it requires that the samples used must be representative of the entire collection.

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Estimating Volumes:

Unbound Paper: 150-175 Pages per Inch

Standard File Box : 2,000 – 2,500 Pages per Box

Banker Style Boxes: 4,500 – 5,000 Pages per Box

Vertical File Cabinet : 3,500 – 4,000 Pages per Drawer

Slides, Photos: 100 – 120 Photos Per Inch

Open Shelving: 1,500 Pages Per Horizontal Foot

Lateral File Cabinet: 5,000 to 6,000 Pages per Drawer

Drawings (Flat, unfolded): 125 – 150 Sheets per Inch

16 mm microfilm roll: 2,000 to 3,000 frames per roll

35 mm microfilm roll: 200 to 400 frames per roll

Microfiche: naked 150 per inch; on envelopes: 80 per inch.

Aperture Cards: 100-150 cards per inch

Estimating throughputs (per production line):

Paper: 15,000-20,000 sheets per scanner per shift

Drawings: 300 to 600 sheets per scanner per shift

16 mm film: 30 rolls per scanner per shift

Aperture Cards: 2,000 cards per scanner per shift

COM Fiche: 30,000 frames per scanner per shift

Standard Microfiche: 20,000 frames per shift

Bound Books: 2,000 pages per scanner per shift


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