Nikon , Olympus, Meiji, Swift Focus Blocks; & Setups

A forum to ask questions, post setups, and generally discuss anything having to do with photomacrography and photomicroscopy.

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Charles Krebs
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Post by Charles Krebs »

NikonUser said:
"Hey pp you are making me feel guilty, sort of muted by the fact that Charles has considered a similar approach. It's not like I was cutting up live animals." :smt044 :wink:

Had to laugh. There's got to be a small twinge of "guilt" when that hacksaw blade hits the metal. But look at it this way. It will now have a productive, active, "life", whereas before it would have languished in a box somewhere and probably wound up in a landfill.

and (... in regards to lubes "solidifying"...):
"It seems that this comment is applicable to microscope stages as well!"

Absolutely! Anyplace a lube is used. I picked up an old Olympus BHA not too long ago for a very modest price. I primarily wanted the trinocular head that was on it, but when I received it, the entire microscope was in spectacular shape. So I decided to make is a "user". But everything that was "greased" was frozen tight. Fortunately nobody had tried to force the focus, so the gears were OK. But it took a long time to get it "free". The plastic gear on the condenser rack was not as fortunate, and that was cracked.

Some of these places do need to be lubed, not only for "wear" reasons but for function as well. For example, the focus gear-trains rely on a proper "damping" grease to get that nice "feel" and function. Usually you can find a lube that will work fine in a hobby shop, automotive, or hardware store. The lubes many repair people and re-furb aficionados use are made by Nye (but they are pricey!)

If you need to apply a lube in an enclosed space where there are optics (such as the prism slides inside a trinocular head) the lube used should have very low "outgassing" so that the optical parts don't accumulate a thin "film" on their surface.

Charlie

g4lab
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Joined: Fri May 23, 2008 11:07 am

Post by g4lab »

Charles comments about lubricants are right on.

Some of the newer synthetic greases will probably be more resistant to solidification than the older ones. I don't know how they are with respect to outgassing.

Another thing to be very sure of if purchasing modern lubricants for use on optics is to make absolutely certain that there are no silicones in the formulation. Silicones are terrific lubricants and part of the reason is they form great monolayers and adsorb to surfaces very well. They will spread until they reach monolayer thickness. Right onto lenses where I have read (unverified) that they supposedly can cause coating separation. They certainly can cause adhesive failure of lens cement. Very difficult to remove too.

If you can get your hands on teflon ultra high vacuum teflon grease or Dupont Krytox those don't outgas and should never solidify. Both are hard to find and pricey. Electron microscopy suppliers would be a good place to look. Ted Pella Ernest Fullam or SPI
Nye oils and greases are available from Watch and clockmaker suppliers. they probably have a website by now.
http://www.nyelubricants.com/

puzzledpaul
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Post by puzzledpaul »

<< It will now have a productive, active, "life", whereas before it would have languished in a box somewhere and probably wound up in a landfill. >>

Couldn't agree more - my sentiments exactly - especially when such items can be acquired for a fraction of their orig. price and when they're considered useless by many because of fashion / 'progress' ...

(for about 12 yrs I had almost unrestricted access to a local (general purpose) scrapyard - and this was great when looking for just about anything - esp when one has 3 phase at home.)

<< The plastic gear on the condenser rack was not as fortunate, and that was cracked. >>

I also have a BH (not -2) with the same problem - so if anyone has a spare pinion+shaft (I understand this item is the same for both models) they no longer need and are willing to part with, I'd appreciate being contacted - thanks :)

pp
Boxes, bottlebottoms, bits, bobs.

NikonUser
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Post by NikonUser »

Someone just got a real bargain; hacksaw not included!
SEE HERE
NU.
student of entomology
Quote – Holmes on ‘Entomology’
” I suppose you are an entomologist ? “
” Not quite so ambitious as that, sir. I should like to put my eyes on the individual entitled to that name.
No man can be truly called an entomologist,
sir; the subject is too vast for any single human intelligence to grasp.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr
The Poet at the Breakfast Table.

Nikon camera, lenses and objectives
Olympus microscope and objectives

g4lab
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Joined: Fri May 23, 2008 11:07 am

Post by g4lab »

My local Olympus microscope dealer might be able to help you with the
plastic gears you need.

They have been Oly dealers for a long time and are nice folks.

http://www.hitschfel.com/contactus.html

mgoodm3
Posts: 273
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:50 am
Location: Southern OR

Post by mgoodm3 »

Finally got mine all mounted.

Image

puzzledpaul
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Post by puzzledpaul »

Checking out the fine focus on my recently acquired BHM upstand, I wondered if there's any difference between it and the BHMJ block, as mention's been made of there being 1micron increments between graduations on the latter's fine focus?

I get 0.2mm full travel with a 200 range - but 100 actual divisions ... ie 2 microns/div?

g4lab - thanks for the suggestion re spares - I contacted them - they weren't able to help directly, but suggested a couple of other routes.
(am in no rush, and failing everything else, I'll mod a rack/pinion from an old bellows.)

pp
Boxes, bottlebottoms, bits, bobs.

augusthouse
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Joined: Sat Sep 16, 2006 1:39 am
Location: New South Wales Australia

Post by augusthouse »

pp wrote:
I get 0.2mm full travel with a 200 range - but 100 actual divisions ... ie 2 microns/div?
Good point pp. A couple of us have been discussing that point recently.

Craig

*edit typo
Last edited by augusthouse on Sun Jan 11, 2009 1:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.
To use a classic quote from 'Antz' - "I almost know exactly what I'm doing!"

augusthouse
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Joined: Sat Sep 16, 2006 1:39 am
Location: New South Wales Australia

Post by augusthouse »

mgoodm3,

That's what I call a bolt! :D

Craig
To use a classic quote from 'Antz' - "I almost know exactly what I'm doing!"

mgoodm3
Posts: 273
Joined: Mon Sep 08, 2008 8:50 am
Location: Southern OR

Post by mgoodm3 »

a 7/8" x 7" bolt fit pretty well into the mount. It is very stable with that much steel.

Charles Krebs
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Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2006 8:02 pm
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Post by Charles Krebs »

mgoodm3.. if your jack ever broke, it looks like you could use it to change a flat on your car! :wink:

pp... I was looking through Olympus literature and they give 2 micron as the marked increment for the BH stands and the BHMJ. I double checked my BHMJ and it was 1 micron (50 full turns moved stage 10mm, 200 units per turn). I emailed Craig and asked him to check his unit and I believe he found the same. So it appears that there may be a difference in some of these units.

puzzledpaul
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Post by puzzledpaul »

<< give 2 micron as the marked increment >>

Yes, I get the same...

5 full turns of the fine focus moves the block 1mm and whilst the range on the fine focus is essentially 0 > 200, there's only 100 index marks on my dial, making the interval between adjacent index marks 2 micron.

Before I got one of these items, I was curious about how exactly the fine adjustment was being achieved - now seeing that a single rack + pinion is employed (with associated gearing) makes me wonder whether there's any difference in linear movement of the block, dependant on which part of the rack / pinion geometry is being engaged ...

I hasten to add that this is all probably rather academic in a way - given the superb pics you guys have been producing :)

pp
Boxes, bottlebottoms, bits, bobs.

Charles Krebs
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Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2006 8:02 pm
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Post by Charles Krebs »

Paul,

Mine are the same. Calibrated in microns, but 2 per mark.

Remember that these were intended for vertical use, so that if you do a horizontal set-up you'll want a mild spring (or "rubber band") to keep it seated against the gearing. Doesn't take much at all.

puzzledpaul
Posts: 414
Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2006 4:15 am
Location: UK
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Post by puzzledpaul »

<< you'll want a mild spring ... >>

Thx, Charlie - already noted ... I was quite surprised by the amount of play, in fact ...


<< if you do a horizontal set-up ... >>

Some way away from that point - I don't have a pc that'll cope with stacking atm - but there'll always be a ready supply of 'laggies', (failing anything else) as our posties often drop them onto the ground when they're no longer needed.

pp
Boxes, bottlebottoms, bits, bobs.

NikonUser
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Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 2:03 am
Location: southern New Brunswick, Canada

Post by NikonUser »

Just came across this: new focus block from Meiji. Only place I have seen new focus blocks for sale.
SEE HERE
NU.
student of entomology
Quote – Holmes on ‘Entomology’
” I suppose you are an entomologist ? “
” Not quite so ambitious as that, sir. I should like to put my eyes on the individual entitled to that name.
No man can be truly called an entomologist,
sir; the subject is too vast for any single human intelligence to grasp.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr
The Poet at the Breakfast Table.

Nikon camera, lenses and objectives
Olympus microscope and objectives

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