Hi-- I'm having a problem with my MF-02 Binocular microscope stage. It is unstable and will readily "clunk" and move to the left. I've tried tightening various knobs and screws but nothing has helped. Any advice? Thanks!
I think your problem lies in the way the stage is limited upwards. On top of the stage, right behind it where it slides against the arm, there should be a little screw. This screw limits the movement of the stage to a certain point upwards. If the limit exceeds the adjustment gear and its opposing track, then the stage just goes up one notch and then it clunks down. If you screw it down the stage is limited further down, if you screw it up it's limited a bit higher. The point of this screw is to prevent objective and slide damage. Try adjusting this little screw a bit further down and see if it still 'clunks' when you turn it up. After that we may work on properly adjusting it. If not, please post again with whatever detail you can provide to aid you with this problem further.
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Yes, or providing they still make it. The monoc head is just held on with a thumb screw, and you can usually buy just the binocular head itself. You will most likely have to get the part through one of Swift Optical Instruments many distributors or dealers, but if you call Swift directly they will be able to direct you in the right direction: (877) 967-9438
The oil goes between the cover slip of the slide and the objective tip. It can also help to put some between the condenser lens and the bottom of the slide. Be careful when using oil, as when rotating to lower magnifications, it is very possible for the 40x to get oil on it. The 100x is sealed to protect it, but the 40x is not. If oil gets on the 40x, it can seep up inside and destroy the lens.
It is also a very good practice to clean both the 100x and 40x after each use. If the oil sits on even the sealed 100x objective for any long extent of time, it will start to break down the silicon seal, and you can potentially have the same problem as with the 40x, where the objective acts like a wick of a candle and sucks up the oil, thereby destroying the objective.
There is probably oil on the outside of the object. You can try cleaning it off with some alcohol and a que-tip. If that doesn't work, the seal of the objective has probably failed and oil has seeped up inside. Otherwise the other problem that can cause it is to many small scratches to the outer lens of the objective. This can happen when the objective lens crashes through a slide.
One thing you can do to protect your objective from this happening, is that most microscopes have some sort of up stop lock, which is designed to prevent the stage from coming past a certain point. On your model, this is most likely a screw that sits just behind the stage.
If the cleaning doesn't work, the usually replacing it is the most economical option. This model has a pretty standard object type, so any object that has a 160mm tube length and has standard RMS threading should work with it just fine.
This might be sign of trouble, because the Nylon gears inside might be worn out. I did not noticed a tension ring on Optiphot 1 or 2. The Nikon S and Metaphot from 1960s to 1976 have Nylon gears with tension ring adjustments.