Through the microscope

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Crystals under polarized light

Some pictures I have taken recently using Gladys the Zeiss Universal microscope. These pictures are at 63X as I remember. Salicine (aspirin), safranin O (a stain having the formula C20H19ClN4) and Platinocyanide of magnesium, the latter is an antique one with an antique name. Nowadays it would be called magnesium platinocyanide.

Slides of crystals are very easy to make either by melting the compound onto the slide or allowing a solution to crystallise onto the slide. One day I’ll catch a snowflake…

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Gallery

Diatoms – anoptral phase

Diatoms taken using a Lomo anoptral phase systemIMG_9669anoptral
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90X cyan filter

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Gallery

Rotifers with oblique lighting

I took some pictures of rotifers with oblique lighting and I’m really quite pleased with them. The cilia can be seen quite clearly and I have managed to get the rotifer’s tail in a lot of the pictures too. Rotifers have a tendency to sit on their tails.

The oblique lighting works better than phase contrast in many ways, you don’t get the halo effect with oblique that you get with phase and it is easier to get clear pictures of the cilia because of this.

Pictures taken on Vickers M4000 with oblique filter in filter tray, canon EOS 1100D camera.

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Gallery

My first diatoms

I have been brave today, I tried lots of new things I haven’t tried before. I used immersion oil for the first time, I used my Lomo aplanatic oblique condenser (oiled) and I tried taking the photos with eyepiece projection – I have never tried that before either. I have been so organised that I have managed to do a compare and contrast of relay lens versus eyepiece projection, I think I prefer eyepiece projection.

I have also mowed the lawn and planted violas in the front garden.  Very lovely they are too, the post lady will be pleased.

Oiling a condenser is messy, finding diatoms under oil immersion is a pain in the posterior but I think I did okay for a first attempt. Something needs cleaning but I’m not sure what. There are blobules in the same place in every shot. I can only assume it’s on the bottom of the condenser. I’m still chuffed though.

All pictures were taken using the Lomo microscope with 1.4 na aplanatic oblique condenser, and 90x oil immersion objective (na 1.25). Some 50 year old cedarwood immersion oil that i fpound in an old condenser box was used for oiling both the condenser and the objective.  The only difference was the photography; a Canon EOS 1100D was used to take all the pictures, but the pictures marked “relay lens” used the Brunel universal camera adapter (2x) and  the pictures marked “eyepiece projection” were taken using a Zeiss projective 8X eyepiece.

Click on the pictures to make them larger…

Gallery

Look at my shiny microscopes!

Today I have been polishing two microscopes that had chipped paint work.

I started by lightly sanding around the chips  with 1500 grit paper, I filled in the chips with layers and layers  of hammerite smooth paint (sanding lightly between each layer of paint to make a key for the next coat). When the chips were filled and level I sanded the whole microscope again with 1500 grit sand paper to form a key and sprayed it with spray enamel (masking off delicate areas).

I left the spray enamel to dry for a few days then went over the microscope with T-cut, next I used Meguiar’s ultra cut which gives a really high sheen and finally I applied a finishing polish. Meguair’s ultra cut is bloody marvellous stuff. I’m pretty chuffed. The polarizing microscope started off with no paint at all on its feet. The phase scope’s paintwork was in better condition but it had a few large chips on the base and on the stand.

Aren’t they shiny?

Tomorrow I shall post pictures of the cobwebs I found in the 45X objective, I promise!

Gallery

Diatoms with anoptral phase contrast

Anoptral contrast- The meopta has more or less co-operated with me today and we have pictures to show for our efforts. After much huffing and puffing I managed to get the mirror, condenser and objective lenses aligned; sort of, just about, almost.

The Meopta’s condenser  is still a tad out of alignment but I think I have got away with it.

Anoptral phase contrast is much like normal phase contrast as far as set up goes. You need Kohler illumination and you need to use a phase telescope to align phase rings on the condenser turret with phase rings in the objective. The main difference is that with anoptral phase contrast the phase plates are a sooty brown colour. This reduces halos around your phase objects and gives a rather soothing brown background. Very easy on the eyes..

What do you think?

Diatoms, Anoptral phase

Diatoms, Anoptral phase

Diatoms, Anoptral phase

Diatoms, Anoptral phase

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diatoms, anoptral contrast

 

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Diatoms, Anoptral phase
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