Hello from the Finger Lakes!

What is your microscopy history? What are your interests? What equipment do you use?
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tmydosh
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Aug 31, 2018 4:16 pm

Hello from the Finger Lakes!

#1 Post by tmydosh » Fri Sep 28, 2018 4:42 pm

Hi everybody!

I am so happy i came across this forum!

Hope this intro post does not ramble on too long but anyway...

I am 61 and have a MA in Biology from SUNY Binghamton in 1982 where I wrote my thesis on circadian rhythms in Mus musculus. Then went on into healthcare, but that's another story...

Anyway, I am a lifelong bibliophile/borderline bibliomane. I have a special interest in the history of late Victorian England, especially regarding the incredible advances in the sciences, especially zoology and botany (not to mention geology and paleontology). Taking a break from re-reading all the Sherlock Holmes novels and short stories, i came across the short stories of R. Austin Freeman, who wrote quite a few Victorian murder mysteries about a Dr. Thorndyke, a Holmes-like forensic physician who helps the police solve murder mysteries. A key feature of these stories is the inevitable use of a microscope to find incriminating evidence. (Quite a few of these stories can be found on the Australian Project Gutenberg site). It inspired me somehow.

So now here I am!

I recently acquired a Leitz SM trinocular. Over 30 years ago I bought a Nikon Model 2 microscope adapter, and was pleased to find it fits the tube on the SM, and attaching my Nikon D5100, I am off and running. I have only had it up and running a few days so i am currently experimenting with the setup, but it looks very promising.

The late Victorians had a penchant for collecting and cataloging, and a popular upper class hobby was spending the day collecting specimens, (especially pond protozoa) and then spending the evenings looking at them and identifying them, as well as mounting them in slide collections. What a cool hobby! After reading the Dover books reprint of Headstrom's 1941 book 'Adventures with a Microscope', i then stumbled across a free pdf of 'Evenings at the Microscope' by Philip Henry Gosse, F.R.S., (1859) which is a fantastic read. So now I'm looking at a drop of local pond water and aha, a Euglena, but what Genus/species? So now I'm reading Jahn's 'How to know the Protozoa' (1949) which suggests if I am stumped that I refer to 'Protozoology' by R.R. Kudo, not to mention the fabulously line drawing illustrated classic 'Freshwater invertebrates of the United States' by R.W. Pennak (1953). So I think I am all set for now, and feeling like a late Victorian gentleman!

As an aside, I am very impressed with the black enamel series of Leitz microscopes as profiled by Greg and Norm Overnay in Micscape magazine (need to send them an email). I am surprised at the relative lack of literature on these fantastic scopes, unlike the Leitz Leica cameras, which have been minutely described down to the most obscure accessory, as in the books by Rogliatti.

When the SM first arrived I was relieved to fine the focusing was perfect, but soon discovered that when I turned the objective carrier there appeared flecks of green droppings on the stage, emanating from edge of the turret. Thinking this was old dried grease I explored further. I will save this adventure for another post, needless to say the lens turret involves two (yes two) sets of truly minute ball bearings which sit in brass races and are uncaged! So I am waiting for a tube of Nyogel 767A to do a clean and relube. I will post my adventure with pics next week hopefully. If anyone on the forum has done this before, please let me know!

Anyway, enough of my rambling. Have a great weekend everybody!

Tom

Bryan
Posts: 67
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2018 11:31 pm

Re: Hello from the Finger Lakes!

#2 Post by Bryan » Fri Sep 28, 2018 5:25 pm

Welcome Tom, I just joined this forum a few weeks ago after purchasing a 1957 Leitz SM microscope. I'm currently working on making it a trinocular microscope. I also have an appreciation for the build quality of these black enamel microscopes, that probably comes from my appreciation of the Leica cameras designed by Oskar Barnack. After a good cleaning my microscope seems to be in good working order but I look forward to hearing about the work you do on yours.

This is my SM: viewtopic.php?f=24&t=6453

Hobbyst46
Posts: 2157
Joined: Mon Aug 21, 2017 9:02 pm

Re: Hello from the Finger Lakes!

#3 Post by Hobbyst46 » Fri Sep 28, 2018 8:21 pm

tmydosh wrote:When the SM first arrived I was relieved to fine the focusing was perfect, but soon discovered that when I turned the objective carrier there appeared flecks of green droppings on the stage, emanating from edge of the turret. Thinking this was old dried grease I explored further. I will save this adventure for another post, needless to say the lens turret involves two (yes two) sets of truly minute ball bearings which sit in brass races and are uncaged! So I am waiting for a tube of Nyogel 767A to do a clean and relube. I will post my adventure with pics next week hopefully. If anyone on the forum has done this before, please let me know!

I wish you success with this project!
A year ago I received a Zeiss standard stand with an interchangeable objective turret, that had suffered a side blow so was bent at one point. It could only be rotated on the nosepiece under force to overcome the friction. Stupidly believing that I could fix it, with a peg and hammer maybe, I took it apart, by applying Titanic Force on the flat screwdriver blade of my Swiss Army pocket knife (these are VERY good quality multitools!) to unscrew the central large flat-headed screw that holds the parts together. Having taken no precautions, I was rewarded with a shower of the tiny balls spreading on the kitchen floor. After some more futile efforts to straighten the bent turret, with all personal pride and motivation shattered, down the garbage went the remains of the thing...
So:
1. Some microscope parts should not be touched by persons who lack the training, tools, experience and common sense.
2. If anyone has a spare objective turret (4/5 position) for a black Zeiss Standard GFL - I am interested.
Zeiss Standard GFL+Canon EOS-M10, Olympus VMZ stereo

charlie g
Posts: 1401
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2014 7:54 pm

Re: Hello from the Finger Lakes!

#4 Post by charlie g » Wed Oct 03, 2018 3:18 pm

Welcome to forum, Tom. I like those vintage texts you mentioned in your post. I find collecting and reading the older texts on 'infuzoria' and other meiofauna quite enchanting. Often organisms you have encountered in your live observations sort of 'jump off the page' in encounters you have with their illustrations or accounts in the vintage texts!

I hope you are able to set up a comfortable microscopy bench and comfortable chair for you observing sessions. Wether or not you are now retired..I sense the fingerlakes/NY region an excellent location for microscopy, microscope equipment collecting, vintage books collecting...we moved 'up here' to fingerlakes region after or son graduated high school...love it though hobby astronomy frustrating with the cloud machines in this area..sigh.

Regarding your Victorian studies..you must attend at least one day of the three day: "Tompkins County Public Library Book Sale Fall '18 it's 10/6-10/23 visit http://www.booksale.org it's in Ithaca, NY

College texts, mags, d v d, cd, cassete books, music etc. the variety of area universities and colleges feed their older materials into this fantastic sale event...go for it. Tom!

Again, welcome to forum...Charlie guevara

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