* My wife's work laptop will have a licensed copy of VueScan installed in the next day or two. I'll play with that - and the settings - and see how it compares. I may break down and purchase a license for home use as well.
* Latest version of Epson Scan seems to do okay. Minimal cleanup (since the 550 doesn't support the Digital ICE) on a couple more images I have here, just working thru what the workflow might be.
* My BIL estimates 300 images. Less than a handful are larger than 'snapshot' size. We may not get them all done, but there's also some clippings from when he had his 15 minutes of fame, back in the 1960's. Three days; should be able to do it.
* My last test is to attach the 550 to my laptop. It's not the fastest machine out there, but hope good enough to handle this scanning job - scheduled to happen in three weeks.