Help Preserve the AACA Library Film Collection

One of the Antique Automobile Club of America’s best kept secrets is its collection of over 300 automotive films and filmstrips, which cover everything from racing and early AACA events to training films for salesmen and mechanics. The AACA has launched an important crowd-funding project to help digitize and preserve this unique window into our automotive past. AACA librarian Chris Ritter offers information on the project and how you can help.


The Antique Automobile Club of America (AACA) is the country’s largest and oldest car club. Founded in 1935, AACA hosts meets and tours throughout the country every year. Club members strive to maintain originality and restore or maintain their vehicles as they rolled off the factory floor.

With an eye toward education and helping members reach their restoration goals, the AACA Library was formed in 1977. Since that date the collection has grown to more than 1-million items and includes sales literature, paint chips, wiring diagrams, shop manuals, periodicals and films.

Unfortunately, many of these important films are over 60 years old and, as time goes by, are becoming increasingly fragile. In order to preserve these films, the library staff will be building a digital film scanner known as the Kinograph. With your help we can share these films with the world before it’s too late.

A Kino-What?

The Kinograph is a digital film scanner that uses a high definition camera for image extraction. Thanks to open source software, the images are compiled into high quality video. AEO sound, developed by the University of South Carolina, extracts the sound and pairs it up with the video. 3D printed rollers allow the scanner to handle 8, 16 and 35 mm film. The Kinograph provides a high quality, cost-efficient alternative to prohibitively expensive film scanners and outsourced preservation projects.

What We Need


To make the Kinograph a reality, we aim to raise $3,500 for the following:


  • Parts & building accessories
  • 3D printed rollers
  • Electronic components
  • An HD digital camera with electronic shutter
  • Film cleaning hardware & supplies
  • Digital turntable to extract audio from vinyl recordings

Any additional funds raised will be put toward equipment upgrades and the maintenance & repair of the Kinograph.

Should the project fail to meet its goal, all funds raised will still be used toward the construction of the Kinograph. We intend to make this happen, no matter what! By contributing to this project, you will be helping to preserve a unique aspect of automotive history. These films will also be made freely available online for all to see!

 To donate to this project through the crowd-funding site IndieGoGo, go to:

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