Taking proper care of your microscope will ensure you have a piece of equipment that will provide years of usage as well as pinpoint and accurate information. Microscopes in general are precision pieces of equipment and should be well maintained, and cared for right from the beginning. If recording vital information from your microscope is important to you, microscope care should be at the top of your list. Now, there are a few different types of microscopes available, and each microscope will require its own type of care and maintenance.
In this article you will discover the proper care techniques that should be applied to these precision pieces of equipment, and how to prevent any future complications that can result from mishandling or rough usage.
Handling your Microscope Properly
In order to insure your microscope functions properly when it is time get used, you will need to make sure that you, and whoever else handles your equipment, uses proper handling techniques when moving and setting up your equipment. On a compound microscope, you will need to make sure that you do not carry the microscope by the arm piece section that connects the base and upper eyepiece tube. This is a common mistake and results in misalignments and inaccurate readings. The Microscope should always be carried using one hand under the base and holding the upper eyepiece tube. This creates stability and will not allow damage to either area.
Cleaning a Compound Microscope
Before getting started with cleaning any of your microscopes, you will need a few cleaning supplies such as clean dry wipes, lens cleaner, gauze and alcohol pads.
The procedure is explained assuming your compound microscope is fully assembled. Make sure your microscope is on a flat and stable surface before beginning. Using your dry wipes with a couple of drops of lens cleaner, you will begin cleaning the eyepiece objective lenses first, starting with the lowest power, and working to the highest. Once you have rotated the revolving turret and cleaned each lens, you will use a dry wipe and start over but this time without any lens cleaning solution.
The purpose is to clean off any excess fluid. Once this is finished, you will begin cleaning the condenser illuminator optic using a wipe with lens cleaning solution. Once finished, you will use a dry wipe to remove any remaining residue. Repeat the same procedure for the top eyepiece lens above the turret tube. Use your alcohol pads to clean on or around the base, arm, and upper tube. When finished make sure you cover your microscope in its own proper covering.
Cleaning a Digital Microscope or a USB Microscope
These important pieces of equipment will use the same cleaning supplies and will be cleaned using the same techniques. There are different types of digital and USB microscopes, so you will need to take this into consideration. The only word of caution would be not using excessive amounts of lens cleaning solution, or extremely wet alcohol pads when cleaning.
Microscope care begins with proper handling, cleaning, and making sure your equipment is stored properly. Compound Microscopes give better readings of accurate information when they are cleaned properly, and this also pertains to USB and digital microscopes as well. Proper care and handling will ensure you have the finest equipment for all your microscopic needs.