using other stuff on a Zetopan

Everything relating to microscopy hardware: Objectives, eyepieces, lamps and more.
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rmb
Posts: 13
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2017 5:38 pm

using other stuff on a Zetopan

#1 Post by rmb » Sat May 23, 2020 11:34 pm

I acquired a Zetopan before christmas. Appears to be made of depleted uranium. Sadly it came with the 1.3 na condenser and a mixture of objectives. I sold the anoptral phase ones and made back the money i spent on the scope. I find the ergonomics a bit old fashioned. You need long arms to adjust the field diaphram on the somewhat lower build quality lux lighting unit. I am loath to sell it for parts. Has anyone had any success using other makers (cheaper) objectives and condensers? I'd like to keep it as a quality 160mm scope. My leitz 170mm leitz ojectives work but you can't fit them together on the nosepiece because the holes are to close together and the collars interfere.thank you

apochronaut
Posts: 3097
Joined: Fri May 15, 2015 12:15 am

Re: using other stuff on a Zetopan

#2 Post by apochronaut » Sun May 24, 2020 6:46 pm

I have worked on a few of these for people. I don't own one but I know them reasonably well. Based on your brief comments, I think your microscope is one of the more modern Zetopans; possibly from the early 70's?

Does it have the 100 watt halogen LUX lamphouse or other? There were a few models, one with a 6V. tungsten bulb but those were on older microscopes.

As far as objectives go. Earlier, Zetopans could be fitted with achromat, fluorite or apochromat objectives. Later on they dropped the fluorite and apochromat options but evolved achromats with better planarity; semi-plan and plan. There was no real need for a large nosepiece because they were a narrow objective and 37mm parfocal, so trying to fit large D.I.N. objectives in the nosepiece would be difficult. It might be better to look for Reichert objectives from the stable of possibilities, or I think Wild objectives; which are also 37mm parfocal and 160mm would work, too. There are a number of other options of objectives with slightly shorter parfocal lengths that might work too but you would have to ascertain if the focus travel would be enough; one would think so. There are also 45mm D.I.N. objectives that are narrower than Leitz, which tend to be quite broad.

You mentioned anoptral phase objectives, which therefore one would assume would have been accompanied by a phase condenser but it sounds like you have the 1.30 condenser? That one is a thread off top and can be replaced with a .95.

rmb
Posts: 13
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2017 5:38 pm

Re: using other stuff on a Zetopan

#3 Post by rmb » Tue May 26, 2020 11:03 pm

Thanks apo
Yes it has the lux light box although without a functioning lamp or power source.
I have gimmicked up an LED to see how things work. The objectives were a mix. A couple of phase and a couple of planachros. Sadly as you surmise no phase condenser. I find unscrewing the top lens of the condenser..well a bit primitive. The 170 leitz objectives still had room beneath them. I see a fine set of olympus splan 160s for sale at the moment bit after reading recent posts about mixing up stuff perhaps not hazard money on them. After all the hype about these being the rolls royce of scopes i was disappointed. The ergonomics are terrible compared to my ao20 and the build seems overly complicated. The elaborate condenser holder for example. Would leitz slides fit the holder? A 39mm condenser could go in the existing akehurst but the clearance the back..And yet such a pretty thing. And some engineer built it up

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

Re: using other stuff on a Zetopan

#4 Post by apochronaut » Wed May 27, 2020 12:45 am

Austria was a soviet dominated country when the Zetopan was born. It harkened back to an era of old school design and engineering ; precise and fantastic in a cumbersome and grand way. By the time the AO 20 came out , the Zetopan was in it's twilight. Wonderful and complicated and so well made but also obsolete. Reichert was saved from the disaster of being milked by the Soviet Politburo by the AO acquisition in 1962 but it took a pretty big revolution within the company to get them on to a whole other directive. There were a lot of people that loved and believed in the Zetopan but in all of microscopy, has there ever been a more striking production mismatch within a company than the Zetopan's fabrication alongside the Polyvar in the 1970's?

My suggestion regarding the condenser was to see if you could find the .95 top, which would serve you well for almost all purposes and use it instead of the 1.30, which might demand oiling.

Hobbyst46
Posts: 2575
Joined: Mon Aug 21, 2017 9:02 pm

Re: using other stuff on a Zetopan

#5 Post by Hobbyst46 » Wed May 27, 2020 9:24 am

rmb wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 11:03 pm
After all the hype about these being the rolls royce of scopes i was disappointed. The ergonomics are terrible compared to my ao20...
I used a Zetopan years ago, and was happy to switch to other brands, because of poor ergonomics, limited optics and over-complicated mechanics. I would prefer other stands.
Thanks, Apochronaut, for the explanation.
Zeiss Standard GFL+Canon EOS-M10, Olympus VMZ stereo

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