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Acryzona

Vertical Micrometer Stage For Stacking Photos

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Acryzona

Just wanted to share an idea for taking better stack of photos when imaging microfossils. For some background, ostracods, foraminiferia, conodonts and scolecodonts are three dimensional despite their small size. As microscope magnification is increased a smaller and smaller vertical section of the fossil is in focus making it nearly impossible to take a decent photograph. Stacking software (e.g. CombineZP, Helicon Focus) permits you to take a series of photographs at different focal planes and the software then creates a composite photo taking just the in focus parts of each photo in the stack.

My microscope doesn't have a fine adjustment knob which made it difficult to take many photos in a stack before the complete fossil was out of focus. I recently purchased a small vertical stage with micrometer on Ebay under Opto-mechanical stages (usually used to adjust mirrors and such in laser setups). The micrometer moves the stage vertically 0.5 mm (500 microns) per revolution of the micrometer and it smallest vertical move is 2 - 3 microns. This allowed me to increase the number of stack photos and hence the focal planes when trying to capture the ornamentation of ostracods and the tooth-like projections on scolecodonts.

Check out some of my recent galleries:

http://www.thefossil...hale-ostracods/

http://www.thefossil...n-microfossils/

post-2453-0-28300700-1329479038_thumb.jpg

Edited by Acryzona

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xonenine

very nice results Acryzona - another item on my wish list, but it has to take a back seat to the indexed turntable purchase, I am still keen on making some rotating fossil animations when I get to it...

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pleecan

Excellent Matthew! I like the set up. Similarly I use an inverted microscope stand as a stage....

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piranha

Wonderful imaging solutions Matthew. Presently I'm studying tiny silicified trilobite elements and experiencing depth of field difficulties as the magnification increases on the stereo microscope. Eventually will I have to consider the stacking technology or can superior optics overcome this inherent obstacle?

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glacialerratic

Thanks for the tip. Great Ostracod photos!!!

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pleecan

]

Wonderful imaging solutions Matthew. Presently I'm studying tiny silicified trilobite elements and experiencing depth of field difficulties as the magnification increases on the stereo microscope. Eventually will I have to consider the stacking technology or can superior optics overcome this inherent obstacle?

Hi Scott: One other solution does exists....

There is an alternate non microscope solution that I found that is superior depth of field to most stereoscope microscope setups .... the use of manual lens 35mm film cameras with bellows system coupled to a live view ie mirrorless digital camera mounted on a copystand gives new meaning to extreme Macro photography : )

Edited by pleecan

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pleecan

Just had a look at your album... Excellent images Matthew!

Peter

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Acryzona

Peter, Tim and Scott - Thanks for kind words.

Scott: I'm curious about your silificied trilobite parts. How are you recovering them? Do you have any photos to share?

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piranha

Scott: I'm curious about your silificied trilobite parts. How are you recovering them? Do you have any photos to share?

The trilobites were recovered from matrix digested with dilute hydrochloric acid. No usable photos yet... :(

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pleecan

I did purchase a couple of z axis vertical translation stages from Ebay.... I knew they existed but did not know the proper name of the device... thanks Matthew for educating us.

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pleecan

The trilobites were recovered from matrix digested with dilute hydrochloric acid. No usable photos yet... :(

Scott:

What sort of size of trilobite parts are we talking about? Can you post a pic of your present equipment... I may be able suggests possible options....

PL

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piranha

Scott:

What sort of size of trilobite parts are we talking about? Can you post a pic of your present equipment... I may be able suggests possible options....

PL

Hi Peter,

The trilobite elements are: cranidia, librigenae, pygidia and singular thoracic segments. Average measurements are 1-4 mm and could never be properly resolved with my photographic equipment. Hopefully they can be imaged at the university with a sophisticated stereo microscope coupled with Zeiss optics. As I learn more details I will post a follow-up report with photos. :D

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pleecan

Hi Peter,

The trilobite elements are: cranidia, librigenae, pygidia and singular thoracic segments. Average measurements are 1-4 mm and could never be properly resolved with my photographic equipment. Hopefully they can be imaged at the university with a sophisticated stereo microscope coupled with Zeiss optics. As I learn more details I will post a follow-up report with photos. :D

Hi Scott:

When you are approaching 1-2 mm range.... mechanical vibrations are the main enemy.... you need a very sturdy base ie concrete floor to start.... then you need to mount the camera steady support structures such as a copy stand.... the shutter must be remotely tripped... good luck... the university has some fine equipment..... I am currently imaging sponge spicules in the 1mm range and use a projection distance of 2 ft between the camera and 50 mm lens.... very high F stops of F 8 to F22 and exposures 8-20 secs .... specimen illuminated with 6500K CFL bulbs = daylight. Looking forward to your fossils images. :)

Edited by pleecan

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Malcolmt

Peter , you are using a 50 mm lens if you were to move to a 100 mm lens would that effectively double the magnification. I have been thinking of picking up some additional prime focus manual nikon lenses. I already have a 200 F4 and a 50mm f1.8. I was looking at 35mm, 50mm f1.4 and 105 mm f2 as well as some of the mico nikkor macro lenses (very pricey). I have a DX format camera so for me a 35mm would be somewhat equivalant to a 50 on full frame camera. I also recently bought three extention tubes a bellows and a reverse adaptor. Looks like playing with this stuff is going to be fun.

I am also thinking about getting a camera mount for my Olympus stereo zoom scope.They come with 1x and 2x optics

Has any one done a standard zoom ocular to nikkon F mount and are you satisfied with the results.

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pleecan

Hi Malcolm: I have the 100mm lenses but I have run out of ceiling space... The rig is too tall... about 18" from ceiling and I can't see the view finder on the camera and I am standing on a chair to view and my arms aren't long enough to manual focus properly so I stick with the 50mm lens : )

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Coco

Malcomt, I really would love to see you up on your chair to do your pics ! laughing%20on%20the%20floor%2024.gif:blush:

Coco

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pleecan

Peter , you are using a 50 mm lens if you were to move to a 100 mm lens would that effectively double the magnification. I have been thinking of picking up some additional prime focus manual nikon lenses. I already have a 200 F4 and a 50mm f1.8. I was looking at 35mm, 50mm f1.4 and 105 mm f2 as well as some of the mico nikkor macro lenses (very pricey). I have a DX format camera so for me a 35mm would be somewhat equivalant to a 50 on full frame camera. I also recently bought three extention tubes a bellows and a reverse adaptor. Looks like playing with this stuff is going to be fun.

I am also thinking about getting a camera mount for my Olympus stereo zoom scope.They come with 1x and 2x optics

Has any one done a standard zoom ocular to nikkon F mount and are you satisfied with the results.

Hi Malcolm:

A 10x microscope lens has focal length of 16mm based on 160mm projection distance

A 100X microscape oil immersion lens is like 1.6mm focal length

So if you go from 50mm to 100mm the image may be 1/2 the magnification but your depth of field will increase....

PL

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Acryzona

Piranha,

I'd be very interested in seeing your photos of trilobite parts and learning some more about your dissolution method. :) I found some possible trilobite parts in a Wanakah Shale this winter. I'll try to get some photos and get your thoughts.

Acryzona

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pleecan

Matthew the vertical micrometer stage arrive yesterday and it works beautifully.... as I am imaging sponge spicules at very high magnifications... allows precision control... thanks for posting this topic.... I got another 2 more units in transit.... PL

Edited by pleecan

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Acryzona

Peter, glad to hear the stages work for you. Could you post some images of the sponge spicules? What magnification are you using?

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pleecan

I will pm you Matthew....

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pleecan

Here is a translation stage integrated

IMGP2990.jpg

IMGP2991.jpg

IMGP2989.jpg

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IMGP2986.jpg

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Malcolmt

That is pretty darn cool!!!!!!

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Auspex

You're getting close to the point where you'll have to adjust for gravity anomalies and the curvature of the Earth!

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pleecan

Thanks Guys! With this rig I was able to image some neat fossil bits for potential inclusion in a publication... :D

PL

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