Pencil wood-shavings

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gekko
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Pencil wood-shavings

#1 Post by gekko » Thu Feb 19, 2015 4:27 pm

There have been a fair number of excellent posts showing beautiful plant thin section images. These are images from a crude, thick section (~250 µm) of a pencil wood-shaving obtained from a pencil sharpener. I tried taking pictures under different lighting conditions (bright field, dark field, cross-polarized light, phase contrast) but I was surprised to see very little difference among them other than differences in brightness. I suspect that the problem might be due to the section being much too thick, resulting in the light beam being diffused through the section, but I would appreciate someone setting me straight on this. The following are bright-field images. Sorry for the air bubbles-- I couldn't get rid of them.

0. Method of obtaining the section:
Image

1. 4x objective:
Image

2. 10x objective:
Image

3. 20x objective; focus stack [16 images; 2 µm focus steps; CombineZP]:
Image
 

JimT
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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#2 Post by JimT » Thu Feb 19, 2015 7:01 pm

Neat. I like the 10x and 20x obj. images but what are the little circles?

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kkokkolis
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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#3 Post by kkokkolis » Thu Feb 19, 2015 7:51 pm

Interesting.

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gekko
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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#4 Post by gekko » Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:03 pm

Thanks for the comments.
JimT wrote:what are the little circles?
As I understand it, those are called "pits" and form cytoplasmic connections between adjacent cells (a pit in each cell is apposed to one in an adjacent cell to form the connection). Here is a relevant link:
https://is.mendelu.cz/eknihovna/opory/z ... cast=19204

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Crater Eddie
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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#5 Post by Crater Eddie » Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:14 pm

Considering how the sections were produced, I think these are quite good.
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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#6 Post by JimT » Fri Feb 20, 2015 2:00 am

You've got me intrigued. I am going to run some different woods thru my pencil sharpener when I get back home to see what I get.
Thanks for the site about pits etc.

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gekko
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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#7 Post by gekko » Fri Feb 20, 2015 3:30 am

JimT wrote:You've got me intrigued. I am going to run some different woods thru my pencil sharpener when I get back home to see what I get.
Thanks for the site about pits etc.
Ha Ha! I look forward to seeing the pictures! But maybe you want to look into making proper thin sections (I know people do make them out of wood, and I'm sure they get much better results, not only because they are thin, but also because you can make a longitudinal or a cross section, whereas my pencil sharpener method gives neither...) But hey, it is quick and easy and you will get pictures out of it :) .

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#8 Post by vasselle » Fri Feb 20, 2015 2:04 pm

Bonjour Gekko
Je trouve les photos très bonnes.
Après il ferais voir avec des sections plus minces pour voir la différences entre différents éclairages.
Ce weekend je vais essayer ça pour voir et je Posterais mes résultats .
En tout ca très bon travail et merci pour le partage
Cordialement seb
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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#9 Post by charlie g » Sat Feb 21, 2015 6:22 pm

Fantastic that you image captured: 'round bordered pits'...of secondary-growth zyleme (secondary growth zyleme=wood!).

Your use of a lead pencil-sharpener to get your samples is so ellegant, Gekko! I'm now thinking that we can determine if the 'wood' is angiosperm tree wood...or conifer tree wood...based upon your images of these'round bordered pits'.

I was able to take a shaveing from a log I split for fire wood...and get an image of it's 'round bordered pits on a vessel element. So I used an 8lb splitting maul to collect my wood sample.

May I try and put my 'raw wood round bordered pit image' in your thread here, Gekko?

I hope all are keeping warm, charlie guevara

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#10 Post by gekko » Sat Feb 21, 2015 11:32 pm

vasselle wrote:Bonjour Gekko
Je trouve les photos très bonnes.
Après il ferais voir avec des sections plus minces pour voir la différences entre différents éclairages.
Ce weekend je vais essayer ça pour voir et je Posterais mes résultats .
En tout ca très bon travail et merci pour le partage
Cordialement seb
Many thanks, seb, for your comment and I look forward to seeing your post!

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#11 Post by gekko » Sat Feb 21, 2015 11:39 pm

charlie g wrote:Fantastic that you image captured: 'round bordered pits'...of secondary-growth zyleme (secondary growth zyleme=wood!).

Your use of a lead pencil-sharpener to get your samples is so ellegant, Gekko! I'm now thinking that we can determine if the 'wood' is angiosperm tree wood...or conifer tree wood...based upon your images of these'round bordered pits'.

I was able to take a shaveing from a log I split for fire wood...and get an image of it's 'round bordered pits on a vessel element. So I used an 8lb splitting maul to collect my wood sample.

May I try and put my 'raw wood round bordered pit image' in your thread here, Gekko?

I hope all are keeping warm, charlie guevara
Thank you, Charlie, for your always interesting comments. Sure, feel free to add your wood image in this thread, but I would think starting your own thread is better because it won't be "buried" here, and people who've already seen this thread are far less likely to visit again whereas they are very likely to visit a new thread. But again, you are more than welcome to post it here if you wish. Today we thawed out for the first time this week. I dread what the heating bill is going to be :)

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#12 Post by Manfred » Sun Feb 22, 2015 6:39 am

Gekko sorry, I saw your thread just now, the idea is very good (I want to try it) and the images excellent.
By the way, this forum is a pool of new ideas and methods to try, I like it.

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#13 Post by gekko » Sun Feb 22, 2015 9:44 am

Thank you, Manfred. I look forward to seeing your results from the pencil sharpener :) . I'm absolutely sure that they will be many levels above mine in quality and beauty.

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#14 Post by gekko » Sun Feb 22, 2015 10:51 pm

I should have said that I soaked the shavings in water for about half an hour, then used a wet mount with cover glass to take the pictures.

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#15 Post by JimT » Mon Feb 23, 2015 12:10 am

Thanks for that last tidbit. I wondered how you got rid of air bubbles. I think you have a lot of people dusting off their pencil sharpeners :D

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#16 Post by charlie g » Mon Feb 23, 2015 1:41 am

Hello Gekko and all..I guess I need to go to Oliver's section on 'reduceing file size' before attempting to post images...my images are 'too large a file size' to be acceptable for posting.

Anyway...your secondary growth zyleme/wood...is clearly conifer wood...based upon the excellent round bordered pits vessel elements you image captured,Gekko!

Wonderful microscopy with your specimen 'wood'! charlie guevara

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#17 Post by mrsonchus » Thu Feb 26, 2015 9:49 pm

This is a great post - very interesting & inspiring. I think the pits surround inter-cellular channels called 'plasmodesmata' (pl). I've just about been able to see them between onion epidermis cells at 400x upwards - they're really hard to spot in the trusty onion.
Thanks for the post & the great images.
John B

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gekko
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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#18 Post by gekko » Fri Feb 27, 2015 11:29 pm

Many thanks for the kind comments.

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#19 Post by hkv » Tue Mar 03, 2015 8:50 pm

Ha Ha, I love these! Also love the ingenuity behind producing the slices. This must be the cheapest Microtome available on the market. :P

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#20 Post by gekko » Tue Mar 03, 2015 9:29 pm

hkv wrote:Ha Ha, I love these! Also love the ingenuity behind producing the slices. This must be the cheapest Microtome available on the market. :P
Many thanks, hkv, for your very nice comment. I wish the cheapest microtome also gave thin enough sections; alas, you get what you pay for :) but it was an interesting experiment anyway.

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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#21 Post by Crater Eddie » Tue Mar 03, 2015 9:52 pm

Perhaps we should call it a Macrotome? ;)
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Re: Pencil wood-shavings

#22 Post by gekko » Tue Mar 03, 2015 9:56 pm

:D

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