Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Your New Microscope...Now What?

Whether it was an early Christmas gift or a purchase for your amateur microscopy hobby, your new microscope has finally arrived.  Now what? You want to check out cells, hairs and anything you can get your hands on, but you can’t figure out how to use this thing.  Let us help you!

Start by getting acquainted with the parts of your new microscope.  After that, master focusing in on an object and your life as the “next big scientist” will become much easier.  When you’re focusing in on a specimen, always start with the scanning objective; if you don’t, you won’t be able to see anything on a higher power objective.  You’ll need to use the coarse knob to focus and, while the image will still be small, you should be able to see something during this process.  Once you’ve focused with the scanning objective, switch to low power and use the coarse knob to focus in on your image again.  Just as before, if you don’t focus in on your specimen here, you will not be able to see anything at a higher power.  Now you’re ready for your high power objective!  Switch to your high power objective and only use your fine adjustment knob to focus on your object.  Once you’re focused, you can adjust the brightness of your specimen by adjusting the diaphragm.

For more information on using your microscope, help with parts of your microscope, tips on drawing your specimen, creating a wet mount and much more, visit