Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

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pdxhiker
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:31 am

Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#1 Post by pdxhiker » Wed Dec 14, 2016 5:48 pm

I happen to purchase a Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580 StereoMicroscope from fleabay, the scope looked very clean and well maintained. But now I see that the right side optics is cloudy potentially due to the grease applied has seeped in to the glass collecting dust which is stuck to the surface, also I can see the prism has similar surface gooey dust. I can't figure out how to open the top eye piece cell to access the internal optics and clean them. Appreciate if anyone knows how to take the eye piece cell apart.
Compound
Standard 14/15/18 (not sure) | Illuminator 100 with 12V PS| Trinocular tube
PH Condenser Ph2,3, BF, DF | 6.3x Plan, 16x,25x, 40x,100x(Oil),Neofular Ph2 & Ph3, 40x PlanAPO Iris | 10x Eyepiece

apochronaut
Posts: 3359
Joined: Fri May 15, 2015 12:15 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#2 Post by apochronaut » Wed Dec 14, 2016 7:24 pm

My understanding of " eyepiece cell" would be one of the cemented doublets in the eyepiece itself. I can't see how grease could have gotten in there, so I assume you might mean the optical window, below the eyepiece. Grease from the diopter thread an be spread around on that, with careless cleaning.

pdxhiker
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:31 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#3 Post by pdxhiker » Wed Dec 14, 2016 7:29 pm

apochronaut wrote:My understanding of " eyepiece cell" would be one of the cemented doublets in the eyepiece itself. I can't see how grease could have gotten in there, so I assume you might mean the optical window, below the eyepiece. Grease from the diopter thread an be spread around on that, with careless cleaning.
you are correct, I see good accumulation of dirt/fungus below the surface of the eyepiece(non-diopter), mostly what looks like the angled glass prism.
Compound
Standard 14/15/18 (not sure) | Illuminator 100 with 12V PS| Trinocular tube
PH Condenser Ph2,3, BF, DF | 6.3x Plan, 16x,25x, 40x,100x(Oil),Neofular Ph2 & Ph3, 40x PlanAPO Iris | 10x Eyepiece

apochronaut
Posts: 3359
Joined: Fri May 15, 2015 12:15 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#4 Post by apochronaut » Wed Dec 14, 2016 10:26 pm

There is a window in there. Sometimes, on older heads, there can be debris trapped by grease from the diopter. With care and good light you an reach in with cotton swabs and a mild solvent( start with isopropyl and a tiny bit of dish detergent, then as the grease looks to be more or less gone, finish with isopropyl) to clean things up. Change swabs frequently. You may need 20 or more. If the dirt is below that window on the first surface mirror, it is pretty hard to get at it from above. Follow these steps to remove the prism shroud. Sounds a bit complicated but it really isn't. It does require a couple of tools, many people might not have.
1) remove the 3 screws holding the objective shroud. take it off.
2) the zoom knobs must come off with a very small hex key...can't remember exactly but I think it is a 1.3mm. you have to remove the little slot head stop posts from the other side of those too, in order to slide off the knobs.
3) remove the 4 large hex screws holding the zoom objective frame to the viewing head. Those are 9/64" , i'm pretty sure.
4) The prism/mirror housings are interlocked for the interpupillary adjustment. The right one( again I think, i've got that right) can be removed by itself but the other one, can only be removed after the first one is removed. Try the right one first anyway. They are removed by loosening a large collar nut and clutch washers on each. Usually a pair of needle nose pliers put into the notches on each side of the collar nut and then activated by another pair of pliers or vice grips, clamped across their jaws as a handle will loosen them.....or a proper pin wrench.. Do not remove any grease from these parts. It is a special damping grease. If the interpupillary adjustment was too stiff, then the damping grease has dried out a little. When reassembling, add a drop or two of machine oil to the clutching area and work everything back and forth, to dilute it a little and get it back to a more pliable condition.
5) Once you get the offending one off, the cap and eyepiece tube comes off with some screws in the bottom.

pretty easy to clean, once apart. lots of patience is the best cleaning agent. if you can't get it done, you could send it to me. I'm in Canada, so the shipping will be 20.00-30.00 or so each way.
good luck. they are a very nice stereo. exceptional value for what you can get them for now.

einman
Posts: 1288
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2015 1:03 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#5 Post by einman » Thu Dec 15, 2016 4:13 am

I sent you the parts manual if that helps. There are 6 inch "Q-tips" you can purchase that might make it a little easier. Otherwise APO pretty much said it all.

pdxhiker
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:31 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#6 Post by pdxhiker » Thu Dec 15, 2016 5:11 am

einman wrote:I sent you the parts manual if that helps. There are 6 inch "Q-tips" you can purchase that might make it a little easier. Otherwise APO pretty much said it all.
apochronaut wrote:There is a window in there. Sometimes, on older heads, there can be debris trapped by grease from the diopter. With care and good light you an reach in with cotton swabs and a mild solvent( start with isopropyl and a tiny bit of dish detergent, then as the grease looks to be more or less gone, finish with isopropyl) to clean things up. Change swabs frequently. You may need 20 or more. If the dirt is below that window on the first surface mirror, it is pretty hard to get at it from above. Follow these steps to remove the prism shroud. Sounds a bit complicated but it really isn't. It does require a couple of tools, many people might not have.
1) remove the 3 screws holding the objective shroud. take it off.
2) the zoom knobs must come off with a very small hex key...can't remember exactly but I think it is a 1.3mm. you have to remove the little slot head stop posts from the other side of those too, in order to slide off the knobs.
3) remove the 4 large hex screws holding the zoom objective frame to the viewing head. Those are 9/64" , i'm pretty sure.
4) The prism/mirror housings are interlocked for the interpupillary adjustment. The right one( again I think, i've got that right) can be removed by itself but the other one, can only be removed after the first one is removed. Try the right one first anyway. They are removed by loosening a large collar nut and clutch washers on each. Usually a pair of needle nose pliers put into the notches on each side of the collar nut and then activated by another pair of pliers or vice grips, clamped across their jaws as a handle will loosen them.....or a proper pin wrench.. Do not remove any grease from these parts. It is a special damping grease. If the interpupillary adjustment was too stiff, then the damping grease has dried out a little. When reassembling, add a drop or two of machine oil to the clutching area and work everything back and forth, to dilute it a little and get it back to a more pliable condition.
5) Once you get the offending one off, the cap and eyepiece tube comes off with some screws in the bottom.

pretty easy to clean, once apart. lots of patience is the best cleaning agent. if you can't get it done, you could send it to me. I'm in Canada, so the shipping will be 20.00-30.00 or so each way.
good luck. they are a very nice stereo. exceptional value for what you can get them for now.
Thanks Apochromat and Einman. The instructions were spot-on, I cleaned up the gunk on the prism mirror, it's much much better but still not perfect. I noticed there are smudges on other optical elements which needs cleaning. Now with clean prism mirror, I notice some image shift between eyepieces, probably collimation issues.

Another question is, is it ok to use q-tips and regular cotton balls to clean the glass.
Compound
Standard 14/15/18 (not sure) | Illuminator 100 with 12V PS| Trinocular tube
PH Condenser Ph2,3, BF, DF | 6.3x Plan, 16x,25x, 40x,100x(Oil),Neofular Ph2 & Ph3, 40x PlanAPO Iris | 10x Eyepiece

pdxhiker
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:31 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#7 Post by pdxhiker » Thu Dec 15, 2016 11:26 pm

update:

I thoroughly cleaned the optics once again removing all the grease, its better but I see the image on the left optical path is not sharp on the edges and blurs out (chromatic abberation?) any thoughts if this is fixable or not.
Compound
Standard 14/15/18 (not sure) | Illuminator 100 with 12V PS| Trinocular tube
PH Condenser Ph2,3, BF, DF | 6.3x Plan, 16x,25x, 40x,100x(Oil),Neofular Ph2 & Ph3, 40x PlanAPO Iris | 10x Eyepiece

einman
Posts: 1288
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2015 1:03 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#8 Post by einman » Mon Dec 19, 2016 4:27 am

I will APO comment on the collimation issues as he has significant experience fixing these older scopes. In regards to using Q-tips, you should be able to use "Q-tips", meaning real Q-tip branded cotton swabs as some of the generics have been accused of containing contaminants that can scratch. I have used Q-tips wrapped in lens paper when I had any concern. Although I have also used the Q-tips alone.

Other forum members will no doubt have their processes

apochronaut
Posts: 3359
Joined: Fri May 15, 2015 12:15 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#9 Post by apochronaut » Mon Dec 19, 2016 1:59 pm

pdxhiker wrote:update:

I thoroughly cleaned the optics once again removing all the grease, its better but I see the image on the left optical path is not sharp on the edges and blurs out (chromatic abberation?) any thoughts if this is fixable or not.
It sounds fixable. Swap the eyepieces left to right , to rule out them. All parts are tight? How about grease or dirt on the lens systems in the zoom? I had one once with some of those lenses, pretty smudged.
I would be looking at one of the harder to reach into, areas. A small flashlight , shone up from the bottom and from various other angles into the system, while you view from above , should find the culprit(s). There is a tendency to clean the central area well, sometimes moving a grease smear or debris to the outside of the field. Possibly the bottom of the optical window, under the eyepiece? Stuff can get pushed to the exterior, there. Bent swabs ( cheap ones, no!) can get in there and from various angles, should bit by bit ,collect the murk. Only one pass per swab, otherwise you risk dragging debris around and that can scratch. Patience and many swabs. It sounds like dirt .
There is the possibility of creeping delamination on a component. Sometimes it begins on the outside and moves inwards in a roughly, ring-like pattern.
check everything carefully with a small light . that should help isolate the area of concern.

pdxhiker
Posts: 35
Joined: Tue Mar 29, 2016 2:31 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#10 Post by pdxhiker » Tue Dec 20, 2016 12:56 am

einman wrote:I will APO comment on the collimation issues as he has significant experience fixing these older scopes. In regards to using Q-tips, you should be able to use "Q-tips", meaning real Q-tip branded cotton swabs as some of the generics have been accused of containing contaminants that can scratch. I have used Q-tips wrapped in lens paper when I had any concern. Although I have also used the Q-tips alone.

Other forum members will no doubt have their processes
I purchased this foam tips from amazon, think they don't leave lint like cotton based qtips.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01FV ... UTF8&psc=1
Compound
Standard 14/15/18 (not sure) | Illuminator 100 with 12V PS| Trinocular tube
PH Condenser Ph2,3, BF, DF | 6.3x Plan, 16x,25x, 40x,100x(Oil),Neofular Ph2 & Ph3, 40x PlanAPO Iris | 10x Eyepiece

apochronaut
Posts: 3359
Joined: Fri May 15, 2015 12:15 am

Re: Disassembling Reichert Stereo Star Zoom 580

#11 Post by apochronaut » Tue Dec 20, 2016 11:45 am

pdxhiker wrote:
einman wrote:I will APO comment on the collimation issues as he has significant experience fixing these older scopes. In regards to using Q-tips, you should be able to use "Q-tips", meaning real Q-tip branded cotton swabs as some of the generics have been accused of containing contaminants that can scratch. I have used Q-tips wrapped in lens paper when I had any concern. Although I have also used the Q-tips alone.

Other forum members will no doubt have their processes
I purchased this foam tips from amazon, think they don't leave lint like cotton based qtips.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01FV ... UTF8&psc=1
bear in mind that those types of cleaning products are designed to have anti-static properties, in order to work well for the removal of charged dust particles. They don't have absorbtive properties, which is an absolute necessity when removing the type of problem you originally described. You might want to follow up with foam pads after using absorbtive swabs, to get any remaining dust or lint off of what should be by then , clean glass but the foam is more .likely to push any grease or stuck debris to the periphery, rather than absorb it and create the problem you are describing more recently.

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