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Not sure what I even want...

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#26 Mike E.

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Posted 23 April 2018 - 03:35 AM

Four screws that mount the stage only penetrate about 3 threads in. All had pulled the threads out of the aluminum stage on arrival. Problem solved (at least for now) with longer screws because there where good threads deeper into the stage. Longer screws to start with or better packaging or better handling would have avoided issues I'd bet.

Make sense now or am I missing your point ?

It makes sense now. Fifty some years ago when I was a kid I recall the local Chinese shop selling rubber dog poo, so I guess the quality of their products haven't changed much over the years. Thanks for posting your experience with Amscope, its another product line to delete from my consideration.



#27 Mike E.

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Posted 23 April 2018 - 04:12 AM

Just an update.

 

I decided to take the scope apart and see what was wrong with the light source.  The initial issues with shipping make me hesitant to send this back for repair, and I’m handy with electronics - I expect it’s just a weakly connecting contact, easy enough to repair with needle-nose pliers.  I would be more hesitant to void the warranty if I had been more impressed with the scope to begin with (my expectations’ fault - not theirs).  I haven’t done it yet.  Other priorities took attention.

 

.............................................................................

Nothing wrong with your expectations, a "new" precision instrument should work right to begin with.



#28 jjgodard

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Posted 23 April 2018 - 04:27 AM

You’ll want a Dob, don’t bother with anything else, forget what you asked for............ Ohhhhh sorry microscopes........ Forget the Dob lol. Donnie

I second the Dob microscope.


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#29 Jon_Doh

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Posted 23 April 2018 - 10:12 AM

You really shouldn't have to "fiddle" with your light.  You do have to make adjustments in the aperture for the light, but you can go on YouTube and search and find videos that explain how to make the adjustment.

 

When viewing at 1000x you should be using oil immersion, but check and make sure your objective is an oil immersed one.  Again, search on YouTube for videos on how to use this lens.

 

If your microscope came with 20x oculars you might try using them with 40x power for 800 magnification.  I use this a lot for higher mag subjects in order to avoid messing with oil.

 

Get out and find some pond water, it will change your life grin.gif

Grab some moss and squeeze the water in to a vial.  Take samples from the murky part of the water too.



#30 mich_al

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Posted 23 April 2018 - 08:15 PM

It makes sense now. Fifty some years ago when I was a kid I recall the local Chinese shop selling rubber dog poo, so I guess the quality of their products haven't changed much over the years. Thanks for posting your experience with Amscope, its another product line to delete from my consideration.



That may be a bit harsh. Overall I think the scope was well worth the money I paid for my intended use. I'd buy from them again but I try to hold vendors feet to the fire when it's possible.
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#31 hippo.potamus

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Posted 23 April 2018 - 10:43 PM

I stopped and filled a 12oz bottle with lake water on the way home today.  Water that had never bothered me before made me cringe a little as I dunked my hand in it to submerge the bottle.  It’s different putting your hand in water that you want to study bugs in.

 

Under the 10x loupe, the most numerous critter were these:

 

C9AF05FE-034D-43F3-B359-1B4B56D4DC92.jpeg

 

They don’t look exactly like any of the varieties of copepods I can find pictures of on the Internet, but they share enough features that I think I’m on the right track.  I wonder if the one on the right is carrying eggs or what?  Haven’t read up yet - just doing a trial run today.

 

Under the microscope, I find moving the slide under the objective to be a major pain in the rear. Also swapping objectives changes the center of the image a bit - what was centered perfectly at 40x takes some hunting to find at 100x and is nowhere to be found at 400x.  This may be my inexperience talking, but I would think having the image remain centered from one objective to the next would be something of a given even with a cheap microscope.  I learned how to offset it appropriately for each objective change, but I don’t think I should have to.  If I stick with this hobby, I will invest in a stage that I can move around with dials, because moving the slide around on a stationary stage is not my favorite thing I did today.

 

D1150179-79CD-4097-839D-C2F28F3A24F4.jpeg

 

This little guy looked like a snake that had swallowed a pig at 40x.  I’m probably totally off, but that’s what it looked like to me.  Some clear little cell-snake swallowed a big round green ball and was wondering what it was supposed to do next.  It would sit still for 30+ seconds, then contract into round around the green ball, then extend and swim a bit, then stop.

 

I didn’t bother trying to do a good sketch of the bugs at 10x because they move around like little miniature lightning bolts, but I took the time to try and get a good sketch of the pig-swallowing-snake bug.  I could have gotten the colors closer, but, as said, this was a trial run.

 

Anyway, I’m a little more comfortable with my tools today.  Tomorrow will be “for real”

 

Regarding the light source, it is constant at first.  After about 5 minutes is when it starts randomly changing brightness.  I’ll get new batteries tomorrow and see if my “new” batteries were actually less new than I thought.  The scope came with an AC adapter, but my “lab” doesn’t have a conveniently placed outlet yet.  Will post results.

 


Edited by hippo.potamus, 24 April 2018 - 12:22 AM.

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#32 hippo.potamus

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Posted 24 April 2018 - 12:20 AM

That may be a bit harsh. Overall I think the scope was well worth the money I paid for my intended use. I'd buy from them again but I try to hold vendors feet to the fire when it's possible.

Agreed, to an extent.  I have been lucky for many years never getting the “lemon” version of a product others have reviewed badly.  What I have seen others complain bitterly and hyperbolically about, I have almost universally found to be not only adequate but pleasantly surprising.  To have experienced a lesser sample eventually was just an exercise in statistics.

 

I cannot say anything bad about AmScope.  I received an email from them today explaining how they had been exceptionally busy lately, which I don’t believe, but I appreciate that they made the effort.  The middle of April is in no way, shape or form “microscope season” where they would be unreasonably busy compared to the balance of the year.  School is 90% finished until the fall.  Everybody is paying their taxes, haven’t received their returns yet.  No incoming event requiring microscopes is anticipated at this time of year.  But I appreciate that they responded to my email finally.

 

The scope I received is solidly built.  I have some issues with it, but I spent less than $200 and there are “basic” models that run $500 more than that, so I knew there would be compromises.  I do expect new equipment to work well, but I don’t expect a $200 telescope to perform like an $800 telescope, so why would I expect different from a microscope?

 

If I can’t fix the lighting, I’ll return it.  Of far greater concern is how the different objectives don’t share a common center.  Somebody please tell me if I’m wrong to think that is an issue I should not have to deal with.



#33 andycknight

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Posted 24 April 2018 - 01:19 AM

Nice drawings!

 

[snip...] Regarding the light source, it is constant at first.  After about 5 minutes is when it starts randomly changing brightness.  I’ll get new batteries tomorrow and see if my “new” batteries were actually less new than I thought.

 

Definitely not right... Seems like something is 'warming up slightly' expanding and then no longer making a connection. Could be as simple as a dodgy solder joint (i.e. dry/cracked) on the battery holder or wires to the lamp. Perhaps even the lamp has dirty contacts, or its spring contact need bending slightly to apply a little more force.

 

[snip...] Of far greater concern is how the different objectives don’t share a common center.

 

This is not the case on my microscope. If you centre at high power, then the object remains in the centre at all powers. Obviously if you centre at low power (due to not getting it quite exact), then at high powers it can drift off centre. To be fair it is technically possible my 40x objective is off by ~1/8 of the FOV, but it is so little that I have never noticed this.

 

One thing to check here is that the objectives are fully screwed in and not cross threaded. This could easily cause such a misalignment.

 

Another possibility is that the turret 'click stop position' is not quite correct. For example: A little F.O.D. where the ball bearing locates in the notch would create a "left-right rotation error", thus easily loosing alignment.

 

It does take a little practice to be able to move a slide reliably by hand at 400x. I tend to 'roll my finger' towards the slide. However if this becomes a constant pain, micrometre attachments are available. (I have not found such an attachment to be necessary as yet - But I guess if I added a 100x objective, then I would definitely get one)

 

Regards

 

Andy.



#34 hippo.potamus

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Posted 24 April 2018 - 02:12 AM

Nice drawings!

Be honest.  If I had made a collage with macaroni noodles and colored cheese, you would have complimented it, right?  (Actually, that WOULD be rather creative...). Thanks all the same.  My eyes know where my sketches went wrong - they will get better.

 

 

Definitely not right... Seems like something is 'warming up slightly' expanding and then no longer making a connection. Could be as simple as a dodgy solder joint (i.e. dry/cracked) on the battery holder or wires to the lamp. Perhaps even the lamp has dirty contacts, or its spring contact need bending slightly to apply a little more force.

 

This is what I’m thinking.  The fact that it does not misbehave until it has “warmed up” suggests it’s not in the dial itself - 3 AA batteries don’t produce the kind of heat to warp the dial contacts, which was my original worry.  Will bring my extension cord home tomorrow and use the AC adapter.  That should put this issue to bed one way or the other.  I have probably... 40 pounds worth of various resistors, capacitors, electronic bits and pieces of every sort including some PIC microchips I will someday find a use for, so whatever it is, I am confident I can fix it.  I should probably have made that clear earlier.  I should also stop giving a play-by-play until I actually have it fixed, then just give the fix.  My gut is now telling me it’s in the battery compartment, but it’s also telling me iced cream for dinner is okay now that I’m all grown up.

 

 

[snip...] Of far greater concern is how the different objectives don’t share a common center.

 

This is not the case on my microscope. If you centre at high power, then the object remains in the centre at all powers. Obviously if you centre at low power (due to not getting it quite exact), then at high powers it can drift off centre. To be fair it is technically possible my 40x objective is off by ~1/8 of the FOV, but it is so little that I have never noticed this.

 

One thing to check here is that the objectives are fully screwed in and not cross threaded. This could easily cause such a misalignment.

 

From the 4x objective to the 10x objective, center is off by about 1/3 (4x) FOV at about 110 degrees.  From the 10x to the 40x, it’s about 4/5 (10x) FOV at 60 degrees.  This is standard geometry degrees, but it doesn’t matter - the angle is different and the span difference does not match the magnification difference.  But checking the objectives for tightness is something I have not done and will not do tonight - it’s already under the dust cover and put away.  I hadn’t thought of that - WHY had I not thought of that?  Again, will find or give up on finding solution before bringing up this subtopic again.

 

I would maybe not need a micrometer stage if I could center reliably for increased magnification.  I found many subjects worth sketching at low power but evenutally gave up trying to get a better view.  Will investigate and post again in a few days.


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#35 Jon_Doh

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Posted 24 April 2018 - 02:05 PM

Are you sure  you don't have controls to move the stage?  I paid about the same as you and my Omax has the controls.  I can also raise and lower the light as well as adjust its diaphragm.  You should have these features in your microscope.



#36 Mike E.

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Posted 30 April 2018 - 10:45 AM

That may be a bit harsh. Overall I think the scope was well worth the money I paid for my intended use. I'd buy from them again but I try to hold vendors feet to the fire when it's possible.

Sorry, I apologise; I didn't mean it to come across as being harsh, my thoughts were just flowing into the words as I typed. I find it bewildering that the world has digressed to the point where poor quality products are so common that they are now considered acceptable. Warranty's are ok I suppose, but he standard of workmanship which I grew up accustomed to, is that if its not right, it never gets out the door. Guess I'm just a dinosaur with outdated values.  undecided.gif    



#37 Microscopy

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Posted 16 September 2018 - 04:30 PM

[...]It would be cool to get the microscope I used in high school 30 years ago.  It was a monocular, had a 3-element rotating objective, a mirror to focus light up from under the slide, fine focus control, and it must have weighted 15 pounds - nothing but steel and glass.  I’ll bet they’re still using that exact microscope at my old high school today, watching little cell-critters twitch about in little cell-critter water. [...]
Yes. I really like those old stands, all heavy steel and brass, with their horse-shoe shaped foot. They aren't popular anymore. The can be bought dead cheap. Microscopes such as the Olympus GB (https://www.olympus-...eum/micro/1949/) must have been sold here by the thousands. They're a regular occurance here on local small ads sites. A "normal" price for that type of microscopes from a "good brand" (Zeiss, Leitz, Olympus, Reichert, Hensoldt,...) is some 75 - 100 Euro's. Second-hand American and Britisch microscopes are rare in continental Europe.



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