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Leica BF200 Restoration

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#1 Sky Muse

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Posted 13 February 2017 - 01:01 PM

I had a microscope of sorts when young, then in 2002 or so I purchased a brand-new Leica BF200, made in China; for about $300, I think it was.  I didn't get involved in using it very much, as I was working at the time.  

Then, in 2005, we suffered through a house fire.  The microscope was on a shelf of a bookcase, and covered.  

 

Nonetheless...

 

before.jpg

 

disassembly.jpg

 

It didn't actually burn, just heated a bit I'm sure, heavily-sooted and stained, and with the base having borne the brunt of the fiery assault.

 

Recently, I was drawn to this forum by a random post I had seen, and listed within the sideline of another forum, which eventually inspired me to undertake the microscope's restoration, and at long last.

 

The very first thing I did was to remove and clean the four objectives.  Upon removing each one, I covered their openings with painter's tape. Here they are, and like new again...

 

objectives.jpg


Edited by Sky Muse, 13 February 2017 - 01:14 PM.

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#2 Sky Muse

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Posted 13 February 2017 - 01:09 PM

At the time of this posting, all of the painted components and most of the others have been restored...

 

parts3.jpg

 

Baking soda works wonders when cleaning.  Charcoal lighter fluid was used first on some parts to clean the greasy stains, then the soda to clean the soot and to dig deep down into the paint.  100% acetone was used to remove the last traces of discolouration.

 

All that's left to restore now is the stage, and the base cover containing the electrical components; also a few screws and such.

 

I've misplaced my 3 oz. tube of Super Lube, to lubricate certain areas when reassembling, and I can't find it anywhere.  I have ordered a 14 oz. cartridge of the stuff this time around, and patiently waiting for it to arrive.  

I have white-lithium grease, but nahhh.


Edited by Sky Muse, 13 February 2017 - 01:17 PM.

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#3 stevie

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Posted 14 February 2017 - 12:13 AM

Looking good ! :waytogo:


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#4 Sky Muse

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Posted 14 February 2017 - 10:54 AM

The stage and its components cleaned up quite well.  The paint had wrinkled from the heat on the iris-diaphragm, and was scrubbed away during cleaning.  I could re-paint just that surface, but it wouldn't be seen...

 

stage assembly.jpg

 

The diaphragm must've been fully open at the time, with the "leaves" of the iris intact and in no need of cleaning...

 

iris-diaphragm.jpg

 

The metal ring that surrounds the condensor's top lens was cocked, yet immovable.  I pried it off and scraped off all of the Liquid-Nails type glue, then epoxied the ring into a level position, and now seated perfectly...

 

condenser lens-ring3.jpg

 

stage-condenser2.jpg


Edited by Sky Muse, 14 February 2017 - 11:44 AM.

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#5 Sky Muse

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 11:21 AM

It should be much more difficult to lose this one...

 

Super Lube - 14 oz..jpg



#6 Sky Muse

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 01:28 PM

Even though the bottom of the diaphragm wouldn't be seen; well, you know how that goes, so I went ahead and painted the outer plate anyway.

 

The plate is of solid-brass, as is the entire assembly perhaps...

 

diaphragm plate.jpg

 

The diaphragm fully assembled and restored; there's a holder that swings out, and for loose filters(?), or one that was originally present yet had shattered and crumbled from the heat, and into history...

 

filter holder.jpg

 

I can't remember if there ever was one.  Trying to recall a rather small detail like that from 2003 to '05 makes my head hurt.  :chair:

 

Aha!  http://www.amscope.c...ies/filter.html

 

I don't think that mine came with one.



#7 Sky Muse

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 05:16 PM

It's a little hard to tell, but the base/light plate and electrical-components were well sooted, particularly the floor of the plate, which required an almost-complete disassembly to clean. 

 

light base3.jpg

 

I had to use water and baking soda to clean the plate, and the power-plug and its prongs which were almost wholly blackened.  The components were cleaned with alcohol and cotton swabs...

 

light base2.jpg

 

light base.jpg

 

Amazingly, the fluorescent light survived.



#8 Sky Muse

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Posted 21 February 2017 - 09:46 PM

In the process of reassembling; it shan't be long now...

 

reassembly.jpg


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#9 Sky Muse

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 03:29 PM

Before, and after...

 

Before-After.jpg

 

In the near future, I will take a pic or two through same, so stay tuned, and thank you for looking.


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#10 Steve D.

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 04:51 PM

Really nice work!


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#11 Sky Muse

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 11:27 PM

An unsalted peanut at the ready...

 

peanut.jpg

 

The peanut at 100x, and via an overhead light rather than the microscope's...

 

peanut 100x.jpg

 

After I snapped the shot, I ate it.  :gotpopcorn:



#12 Sky Muse

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Posted 22 February 2017 - 11:33 PM

The tip of a toothpick at 100x; again, an overhead light was used...

 

toothpick tip 100x.jpg

 

 



#13 Starman27

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Posted 23 February 2017 - 11:53 AM

Good work.


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