My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

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ebenbildmicroscopy
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Joined: Sun Jul 23, 2017 8:57 pm

My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

#1 Post by ebenbildmicroscopy » Tue Sep 11, 2018 2:39 am

I apprenticed for 4 years with a master machinist, Klaus Wirbelauer, in the microscope department at Carolina Biological Supply Company and this is one of my favorite tricks that he taught me for removing asset tags from painted finishes. It works like nobody's business but you've got to use a bit of finesse when implementing it... what was the line in King Arthur for extracting Excalibur? "Tis a gentle hand that will rule the land."

Obtain an aluminum soda can and cut out the flatest portion - the middle band. (I "true it up" on my sharp paper cutter and then radius the corners so it doesn't get so beat up in my toolbag). The trick works best if you have access to either friction tape or theater gaff tape. They're both the same thing - cloth tape that leaves virtually no residue but because of the cloth, they're thick and hearty and hold up well to abuse. Mask off the two longest dimensions of the tag you're trying to remove then begin to pull the can scrap - SLOWLY and with an upward motion - like a knife under the tag. VOILA, before you know it, the tag comes right off. (In the pictured example, I just happened to get extremely lucky and the backing material came off with the tag! This usually is not the case). Use a little petroleum ether to wipe off the residue with a Kimwipe. Now sit back and finish off your grape soda while admiring the shiny finish on your scope.

I'm telling ya - this trick works like a miracle. But remember, have some finesse and don't get too aggressive!
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JeffO, aka "Ortho amore"
Leitz Ortholux I
Leitz Orthoplan
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Zeiss GFL
Zeiss Standard
Zeiss Photomicroscope III
Zeiss OPMI 6S
B&L Stereozoom and Balplan

MichaelG.
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Joined: Mon Apr 10, 2017 8:24 am
Location: NorthWest England

Re: My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

#2 Post by MichaelG. » Tue Sep 11, 2018 6:18 am

Nice demo, JeffO

Just one potential improvement, if I may:
Your choice of tape is very logical, but you may want to try using Kapton tape for your protective strips
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kapton
.... This stuff has some amazing qualities, and in recent years has become readily available.

MichaelG.
Too many 'projects'

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ebenbildmicroscopy
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Re: My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

#3 Post by ebenbildmicroscopy » Tue Sep 11, 2018 9:54 am

That's amazing tape! I want to say I've seen it used as a shipping barrier in a remote control to prevent dry cell batteries from working - there was a little tab to be removed (by the consumer) between the battery and the terminal in the device.
JeffO, aka "Ortho amore"
Leitz Ortholux I
Leitz Orthoplan
Leitz Macro-Dia Device
Zeiss GFL
Zeiss Standard
Zeiss Photomicroscope III
Zeiss OPMI 6S
B&L Stereozoom and Balplan

MichaelG.
Posts: 1522
Joined: Mon Apr 10, 2017 8:24 am
Location: NorthWest England

Re: My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

#4 Post by MichaelG. » Tue Sep 11, 2018 2:48 pm

Here's one of many sources:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/33M-100ft-Ka ... 3920515717

MichaelG.
Too many 'projects'

billbillt
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Re: My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

#5 Post by billbillt » Tue Sep 11, 2018 3:54 pm

Thanks for the tip!...

BillT

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lorez
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Re: My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

#6 Post by lorez » Sat Sep 15, 2018 7:14 pm

I apprenticed for 4 years with a master machinist, Klaus Wirbelauer
WOW ! That's a name from the past. I visited with Klaus on many an occasion, back in the day. He was very kind and generous until you (I) asked a really stupid question.

lorez

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ebenbildmicroscopy
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Re: My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

#7 Post by ebenbildmicroscopy » Sat Sep 15, 2018 11:55 pm

lorez wrote:
I apprenticed for 4 years with a master machinist, Klaus Wirbelauer
WOW ! That's a name from the past. I visited with Klaus on many an occasion, back in the day. He was very kind and generous until you (I) asked a really stupid question.

lorez
*that* is wonderful! Tell me more about it - are you in the Burlington, NC area? Did you meet Andy, who had been the repair technician before me?

...more than once, I disappointed Klaus by doing numb-nuts mistakes after he had just told me what to do but, I'm the machinist I am today due to his influence and passion for machining! He's had a few health concerns in the last year and I'm planning on going to see him within the month. Carolina Biological discontinued the microscope repair machine shop (after 45 years) but Klaus still does work in the "kitting" dept and his wife is head of customer service at CBS!
JeffO, aka "Ortho amore"
Leitz Ortholux I
Leitz Orthoplan
Leitz Macro-Dia Device
Zeiss GFL
Zeiss Standard
Zeiss Photomicroscope III
Zeiss OPMI 6S
B&L Stereozoom and Balplan

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KurtM
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Re: My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

#8 Post by KurtM » Sun Sep 16, 2018 1:14 am

Very cool, thanks for posting!

I usually leave asset tags as shown in your excellent presentation in place, if they're not too big, ugly, crooked, etc., as I like how they tell a bit of the scope's history. But that's a personal preference thing neither here nor there; the reason I post is I want to solicit similar tips for removing soft decals/stickers, typically notification stickers for routine maintenance service which we hobbyists aren't exactly famous for relying upon. Most the time they fail to age gracefully while nagging it was last professionally attended to in 2003 or whatever, adding little thrill to ownership.

Please keep those tips & tricks from the pros in the microscope repair department coming!

PS: I hope y'all are well in the Carolinas at present. Got a bit of weather there, I see. The kind of weather I have more than a little experience with myself.
Cheers,
Kurt Maurer
League City, Texas
email: ngc704(at)aol(dot)com
http://sawdustfactory.nfshost.com/microscopes/
https://www.flickr.com/photos/67904872@ ... 912223623/

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ebenbildmicroscopy
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Re: My favorite microscope repairman's trick...

#9 Post by ebenbildmicroscopy » Sat Sep 22, 2018 4:19 am

Hello Kurt!

Thank you for the good thoughts during our recent storm. Burlington is in the middle of the state and we, literally, pretty much dodged most of the storm. I had a little water seep into the machine shop under the door since the shop is at ground level, but other than that, made it through fine.

I can relate to your leaving service and asset tags in place as a function of historical context. I have an Ortholux that bears an Emory University Medical Center - I leave it there imagining the scope probably used in connection with the CDC and all of the neat work it probably did in it's life - now in my humble little collection! I have several Mettler analytical balances in my hobby lab and they all still bear their last certification tags, more or less as a reminder of how far out they now are.

I wish our instruments could talk and tell of all the important work they did during their professional lives!
JeffO, aka "Ortho amore"
Leitz Ortholux I
Leitz Orthoplan
Leitz Macro-Dia Device
Zeiss GFL
Zeiss Standard
Zeiss Photomicroscope III
Zeiss OPMI 6S
B&L Stereozoom and Balplan

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