advice for Nikon Labophot trinocular head

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ohdeeremee
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advice for Nikon Labophot trinocular head

Post by ohdeeremee »

I have a Labophot (I) microscope w/ binocular head, and want to add a trinocular head to go to Nikon APS-C camera. I am not familiar with microscope stuff. What all do I need? This is a Biological, has CFW 15x eyepieces, 4 objectives, PHI 10x DL 160, 40x, 40x DL, Plan 100DL, and a Phase Contrast 1.25.. All works and clean. I want to do things like rocks and computer chips, so Lighting is an issue, need external.
What type head? T, F, UW? what adapters to camera, etc.
Any help appreciated.
Thanks
George

Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

I'm struggling with some of the same issues, with the same equipment. I have a Labophot and Optiphot. I've discovered that a Nikon BR2 ring fits almost extly into the female dovetaiil, so the camera with extension tubes can be fitted directly to the microscope or an epi-illuminator. (RAFcamera also makes adaptrs for this dovetal to M42 threads.) I also got a Nikon quadrinocular head (binocular, vertical long output tube for Nikon projection lenses, and horizontal output for something else. The raw output of the vertical tube is a focused image just a few centimeters above the quadrinocular or trinocular housing. You could remove the tube and put a thin mirrorless camera there to capture the direct inage without projection. You could also use a good 1.4x teleconverter there, and then you could use any camera. I'm testing these options right now and will post when I have some results, though many forum members know much more than me about this, and they may have some advice for both of us.

My main interest in using these scopes is to get epi or BD illumination for scientific subjects with very high NA objectives with no working distance. For other subjects I much prefer the freedom of a home-made setup with the microscope objective mounted on a well-chosen tube lens attached directly to the camera, with no microscope..

Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

I've just tested the S1R with the trinocular head. You can get direct projection of a roughly 21mm square image on the S1R with TC14 attached if you remove the vertical tube. But it is not exactly parfocal with the viewing head binocular eyepieces. It is very very close though. Maybe close enough not to matter. It could be made parfocal by replacing the Nikon to L mount adapter with a custom helicoid. I may try this.

You could project directly on a PEN F I think.

Ichthyophthirius
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Post by Ichthyophthirius »

Hi George,

I good starting point for getting familiar with the Labophot is this site: http://www.prc68.com/I/Labophot.html

Trinocular tube T is the most convenient, F is cheaper, UW is expensive and a bit too much for this microscope (also needs 30 mm eyepieces), teaching head is an interesting option for a homemade DSLR solution.

It's perfectly OK to start taking pictures by just holding a smartphone or camera the the eyepieces. More sophisticated camera adaptations depend on the camera you have/want to use, your patience in hunting down the necessary equipment, and your budget

Not sure what objectives you have there, do you have a picture? Could be CF or pre-CF. For your intended application you will eventually need a low magnification objective (around 4) and for high magnifications, you need objectives (20 and/or 40) for use without a cover glass and with a suitable working distance. But you can start with the biological 10 because it can be use with or without a coverglass. The phase ring (DL) is OK in the beginning, don't worry about it too much.

For lighting, a ping-pong ball or plastic cup as a diffuser https://www.photomacrography.net/forum/ ... ope2_1.jpg and two external spotlights, even simple LEDs https://www.ikea.com/gb/en/cat/jansjoe-series-18294/ , are a good start.

Regards, Ichty

iconoclastica
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Post by iconoclastica »

Hi George,

I have built up my system starting with the discussion head. It is described in detail here. I have been using it with great satisfation for one and a half year now (only the stand now is no longer labophot but optiphot now).

Surely you can do the same thing with othe other trinoc heads, only there will need more hardware tweaking required.

I swtiched to optiphot because on that model the nosepiece can be swapped with another one. So when I add the epi-iluminator I replace the whole revolver with one having a series of incident light objectives. I find it difficult to get proper lighting though in epi mode. Often the image is blinded by a haze of reflected light.

Wim
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Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

"I find it difficult to get proper lighting though in epi mode. Often the image is blinded by a haze of reflected light."

I have recently begun to use my Optiphot with epi or BD lighting and high-NA objectives. I have not had any major problems with haze, except once when I tried it with a coverslip (which of course reflected the epi light back at me). I like it so much that in the course of a week it has quickly become my main set-up (connected to a WeMacro Micromate for stacking).

Do you use an epi illuminator with a field stop, an aperture iris, and a polarizer/ analyzer filter pair? Each of those things, properly set, help control flare when it is present.

Edit after seeing the next comment: I use direct projection on a full frame sensor, but I remove the trinoc head first. This gives me a better image. Still, most objectives cause corner and edge degradation, so I use a TC14 teleconverter which eliminates that.
Last edited by Lou Jost on Fri May 01, 2020 1:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Scarodactyl
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Post by Scarodactyl »

Direct projection as iconoclastica demonstrates above is pretty compelling. I think you're probably stuck with a 50/50 light split though, right? Plus whatever drama the pointer does or does not bring to the table. Still, they're the cheapest trinocular heads you can get for a nikon, plus you don't have to pay for the extra tubes and adapters and 2.5x projective eyepiece which will crop a lot of your image on aps-c (though it might be similar to what you see with a 15x eyepiece).
I did get an UW head for mine, though, and just use the 2.5x projective and lose some image. it's workable. I've thought of converting to direct projection but I'll probably need to sell it someday.

iconoclastica
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Post by iconoclastica »

Lou Jost wrote:"I find it difficult to get proper lighting though in epi mode. Often the image is blinded by a haze of reflected light."

I have recently begun to use my Optiphot with epi or BD lighting and high-NA objectives. I have not had any major problems with haze, except once when I tried it with a coverslip (which of course reflected the epi light back at me). I like it so much that in the course of a week it has quickly become my main set-up (connected to a WeMacro Micromate for stacking).

Do you use an epi illuminator with a field stop, an aperture iris, and a polarizer/ analyzer filter pair? Each of those things, properly set, help control flare when it is present.
Hi Lou,

My results vary and it is is a relief to hear that good results are within reach ;-) But I don't wan to hijack Geroge's post with my problems. Nor do I have much time at this moment to try out various options, so by your consent, I will return to the subject late this year.

But in short: yes, the illuminator has both irises and I use both of them. I have not yet printed the polarizer slide, so that is not in place. Also, the "exit" of the illuminator is a pair of concentric light tubes, I presume to use with either BD or epi. The inner tube broke from its three tiny legs and I still have to devise a means to put it back in place. So there's another uncertainty. Perhaps I'd better added the proviso: given the state of the nth-hand material presently on the market (It was never a very popular model in Europe, I believe).

Wim
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iconoclastica
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Post by iconoclastica »

Scarodactyl wrote:Direct projection as iconoclastica demonstrates above is pretty compelling. I think you're probably stuck with a 50/50 light split though, right? Plus whatever drama the pointer does or does not bring to the table. Still, they're the cheapest trinocular heads you can get for a nikon, plus you don't have to pay for the extra tubes and adapters and 2.5x projective eyepiece which will crop a lot of your image on aps-c (though it might be similar to what you see with a 15x eyepiece).
Hi Scarodactyl,

Yes, there's a splitter in the light path. My subjects are immobile, so no problem there. Moreover, the lamp of the optiphot can, if desired, be brought up to burn holes in your retina... But also consider Lou's solution to remove the head altogether. It's an interesting thought to do away with the eye pieces and view the object on a large monitor.

Direct projection just about covers the APS-C sensor. I am not to worried about that, because one, the field still is larger than seen with 10x oculars, and second (unless you have really excellent objectives) enlarging will not add resolution.

Wim
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Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

Wim, the splitter in the head is also a potential cause of flare. Mine caused quite a bit, though cleaning it helped. I still preferred to remove the head altogether.

iconoclastica
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Post by iconoclastica »

I will certainly try that then, Lou. Thanks.
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ohdeeremee
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Post by ohdeeremee »

Thanks for all the info. I did find and bought a Trinocular head, Type F. Nice clean one, one itty-bitty scratch on the side. Has the top cover also. Now all I need to find is an adapter from the camera tube to Nikon F mount.

Had a D90 not doing anything, old but works, put a 1.4x Teleconverter on it and set it on top of the tube. Went to LiveView for focusing, and of course it does not focus at the same place as the eye pieces. About 2 1/2 turns of the fine focus knob different. Not sure, but think the focus point will be IN the tube to be the same as the eye pieces. Looks to be about 2X more magnification than the 15x eye pieces.

Thanks for the links, Wim & Ichty, Everything I read, being a newbee, is an education. Found out I could take one of the eye pieces and drop it into the photo tube, and low and behold, it is just the same as the normal eye piece. Now I need to figure out how to mount a camera above that, and without the 1.4x teleconverter, tho I think I need something there, just not sure what at this point. Maybe a 2.5x projection eyepiece. Rainy day play time, I guess, but here and now is bird migration, so I am busy with that.

Thanks again for the info.

George

Scarodactyl
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Post by Scarodactyl »

ohdeeremee wrote:. Not sure, but think the focus point will be IN the tube to be the same as the eye pieces
Correct. The tube is designed for a projective eyepiece to reach down to that image and project it upwards, but if you were to remove it entirely the intermefiate image should cover aps-c (even their basicest 'E' objectives cover ultra widefield 26.5mm eyepieces.)

Ichthyophthirius
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Post by Ichthyophthirius »

Scarodactyl wrote:The tube is designed for a projective eyepiece to reach down to that image and project it upwards, but if you were to remove it entirely the intermefiate image should cover aps-c
But we would need to qualify which part to remove. If you remove the complete Nikon chimney (screws in an out easily!) you remove the tube lens at the bottom of the chimney and you get no intermediate image at all. There is an infinity space below the chimney. At least that is the case for the "T" and "UW" trinocular tubes:

https://www.photomacrography.net/forum/ ... path_1.jpg

Lou Jost
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Post by Lou Jost »

There are no optics in the vertical exit tube of my trinocular (actually quadrinocular) Labophot/Optiphot head.

In my Optiphot, I get something pretty close to parfocality between the image as viewed through the head and the image on the sensor (with head removed), by adjusting the sensor-to-objective-shoulder distance to mathe the 200mm specificaction of the 210mm finite objectives. This is on an Optiphot with no optics, through an epi-illuminator. If I recall correctly, I got the same results without the epi-illuminator but adding a spacer of equal length.

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