Automatic macro rail

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LordV
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Automatic macro rail

Post by LordV »

Not really of much interest for me but an old work colleague sent me this link http://www.flickr.com/photos/13084997@N03/4278265499/ (this is his flickr gallery).
A fully automatic macro rail setup. I could not find it on the linked site with a quick look but pretty certain it works with the stopshot controller.

Ah should have read his email properly - apparently he is beta-testing it for them.

More info on the unit
"Its programmable and has a number of control modes.

Manual, move a specific distance then trigger camera
Distance/step, set distance and number of steps
Total distance, set total travel distance then number of steps
Automatic, find start point add to memory, final focal end point add to memory, program number of steps. Unit then automatically goes to start position steps through focus stack and then stops at end point, it then returns to start point. I'm going to use this to build focus stack panaromas.

For all of the above, the controller not only controls the rail but it also fires the camera. The global setting are all programable, eg speed, settle time between shots, number of shots per step, torgue, etc. I'm using it down to 0.01mm steps. "

Brian v.
www.flickr.com/photos/lordv
canon20D,350D,40D,5Dmk2, sigma 105mm EX, Tamron 90mm, canon MPE-65

elf
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Post by elf »

It looks nicely made. It's only accurate to 0.01mm which isn't enough for high magnification, but a different lead screw could fix that.

Adding another module with a lens holder and a bag bellows, you could have a very versatile setup.

Linden.g
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Step size for StackShot

Post by Linden.g »

Hi Elf, how small a step would you like to go

Linden

morfa
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Post by morfa »

Exciting stuff!

What I would love is to have this + a small battery powered portable control device to bring with me into the field! This device should have one dial to set the focus increment (in the interval 0.1-1mm) and one push button that steps the motor one step and triggers the shutter! :)

Linden.g
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Stackshot

Post by Linden.g »

Morfa

There will be a portable battery powered version. The simple two button option is something we have also considered.

Linden

DaveW
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Post by DaveW »

The problem is where would you find static subjects requiring 0.1mm steps in the field? Insects move and so do plants in the breeze. Usually such fine step multiple stacks require subjects taken in a controlled studio situation, and usually dead if they are insects?

DaveW

elf
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Re: Step size for StackShot

Post by elf »

Linden.g wrote:Hi Elf, how small a step would you like to go

Linden
I think closer to .001mm would be best, but that may not be cost effective for the largest market. If I remember correctly the DOF on my Nikon BD Plan 10 0.21 is about 15 microns.

elf
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Post by elf »

DaveW wrote:The problem is where would you find static subjects requiring 0.1mm steps in the field? Insects move and so do plants in the breeze. Usually such fine step multiple stacks require subjects taken in a controlled studio situation, and usually dead if they are insects?

DaveW
But why limit it's use to the field?

Linden.g
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StackShot at 17x magnification

Post by Linden.g »

I'm currently testing it at 0.02 mm steps at 17x magnification see example here
http://www.flickr.com/photos/13084997@N03/4252334445/

Linden

DaveW
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Post by DaveW »

Morfa said it was required for field use? I raised the question elsewhere how far can one go with the number of stacks outdoors anyway?

http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/v ... php?t=8928

DaveW

rjlittlefield
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Re: StackShot at 17x magnification

Post by rjlittlefield »

Linden.g wrote:I'm currently testing it at 0.02 mm steps at 17x magnification see example here
http://www.flickr.com/photos/13084997@N03/4252334445/
Looks good at 1024 x 683, the largest posted. What optics were used?

A focus step that is accurately 0.01 will handle anything up to 10X NA 0.30 at full resolution with most subjects. There might be some focus banding visible with particularly regular structures, such as compound eyes.

The required step drops at higher magnification and larger NA. I like 0.0025 (2.5 microns) at 20X NA 0.40, for example HERE. That step was determined by experiment, using direct observation of how features change appearance with focus.

A good reference is microscopyu's DOF calculator. That calculator gives a DOF of roughly 5 microns at 20X NA 0.40, but to eliminate visible banding a somewhat finer step is required.

--Rik

Linden.g
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Post by Linden.g »

Hi Rik

Thanks for the links, and the beautiful images. I'm using a Canon TV lens JF16mm 1:1.4 inverted on extension tubes. The depth of field appears to be greater than a microscope lens. Here is a wing scale example.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/13084997@N ... 467961844/

Linden

morfa
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Post by morfa »

Linden.g wrote:There will be a portable battery powered version. The simple two button option is something we have also considered
Wow, that is something to look forward to! I hope you'll keep us posted!

DaveW wrote:The problem is where would you find static subjects requiring 0.1mm steps in the field? Insects move and so do plants in the breeze. Usually such fine step multiple stacks require subjects taken in a controlled studio situation, and usually dead if they are insects?
I'm not sure exactly how fine increments I've been doing in the field – never really measured it. But if I can have 0.1mm precision I'm sure I'll find a way to make use of it! :wink: Early in the morning, bugs can stay perfectly still for extended periods of time. Breeze can be a problem but some mornings are perfectly calm and often, if you're careful, you can clamp the perch without scaring the subject and that helps a lot!

Linden.g
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Post by Linden.g »

John, I would give Paul at Cognisys a call because he would really be interested in hearing how people would use this equipment. Its still very early days and the more input the better.

Linden

morfa
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Post by morfa »

Yes, I found their website via your stream – I'll send them my wish list! :)

And I've added this for you DaveW> http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/v ... 4529#54529

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