Basic Microscope Kit
question:basic-microscope

The Basic Microscope Kit is an introductory Do-It-Yourself microscope made from affordable and easy to find parts. It's based on [the Hackteria microscope](https://publiclab.org/notes/partsandcrafts/10-26-2017/making-a-hackteria-microscope), the OpenFlexure Microscope, and @maxliboiron's work at http://CivicLaboratory.nl ( #13503 ), among other sources. (above image by @partsandcrafts) ## Goals This project was started as a collaboration between Public Lab and [Parts & Crafts](http://partsandcrafts.org). The goals of the project are: 1. offer a very easy starting point for DIY microscopy 2. act as a stepping-stone to more advanced DIY microscopes 3. be as affordable and simple as possible while still providing great microscopic images 4. be good enough to view 2-5 micron size particles (see [sample images below](#Sample+images)) ##About the parts ### General parts list * a lens (objective) * a [Raspberry Pi](/tag/raspberry-pi) * a [Raspberry Pi camera](/pi-camera) * a light source * a rigid stage to connect these all together ###Example parts list for building a Basic Microscope: * [Raspberry Pi camera](https://www.amazon.com/SainSmart-Camera-Module-Webcam-Raspberry/dp/B00FGKYHXA/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1516378086&sr=1-1-spons&keywords=raspberry+pi+camera&psc=1) * [Raspberry Pi Zero W](https://www.amazon.com/CanaKit-Raspberry-Wireless-Starter-Official/dp/B06XJQV162/) * [a micro SD card](https://www.amazon.com/SanDisk-MicroSDHC-SDSDQM-B35A-Without-Adapter/dp/B004ZIENBA/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8) * [a USB light](https://www.amazon.com/I-MU-Flexible-Gooseneck-Brightness-Gray-White/dp/B071Y3P8ZC/) * [a lens (objective x40)](http://www.amscope.com/40x-achromatic-microscope-objective.html) * [a hackteria microscope stage](https://publiclab.org/notes/partsandcrafts/01-22-2018/building-the-microscope-stage) (with modifications from Parts and Crafts!) * [a 3D printed objective adapter](https://github.com/rwb27/openflexure_microscope/blob/master/stl/optics_picam2_rms.stl) * the bolts to hold it together Extras to help you get started: * [Microscope slides](https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008JFRP1K/ref=od_aui_detailpages00?ie=UTF8&psc=1) * [A microscope stage calibration slide](http://www.amscope.com/microscope-stage-calibration-slide-for-usb-camera-0-01mm-stage-micrometer.html) * [Microscope Immersion Oil](https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007PD4IZS/ref=ox_sc_act_title_1?smid=A35BV4NHHC5J5C&psc=1) * Rubberbands * A magnet **** ## Getting started Start with the [Overview activity, here](/notes/partsandcrafts/11-26-2017/building-a-raspberry-pi-microscope). Then see [the activities below](#Activities) for each step in detail. _Basic Prototyping Kit now available for sale in the [Public Lab store](https://publiclab.myshopify.com/collections/under-development/products/basic-microscope-prototyping-kit-preorder?variant=7861722578972)!_ **** ## Questions [questions:basic-microscope] ![](https://publiclab.org/system/images/photos/000/022/864/medium/Screenshot_2017-12-08_at_5.12.19_PM.png) ## Activities [activities:basic-microscope] ## Challenges We're working to refine and improve DIY spectrometry on a number of fronts; here, take a look at the leading challenges we're hoping to solve, and post your own. For now, we're using the Q&A feature, so just click "Ask a question" to post your own challenge. [questions:basic-microscope-challenge] **** ## People Folks involved in getting this project started include: [people:group:partsandcrafts] **** ## Sample images [![](/system/images/photos/000/022/598/large/sample_1.jpg)](/system/images/photos/000/022/598/original/sample_1.jpg) [![](/system/images/photos/000/022/597/large/sample_3.jpg)](/system/images/photos/000/022/597/original/sample_3.jpg) ...


Author Comment Last activity Moderation
Bronwen "Hi Max- The microscopes have just one magnification--the lenses are fixed. Most of the upgrade webcams show a field about 1-1.5mm across, while th..." | Read more » over 4 years ago
Bronwen " Oh, wow, I totally missed the mark, that's even cooler. " | Read more » almost 5 years ago
warren "Although, "tell these apart" may also be a relative term. When you see the light or dark regions, you dont see the pits themselves but rather diffe..." | Read more » almost 5 years ago
warren "And to answer a question above, I /think/ this would put all "long" pits in the 1 regions, and all "short" pits in the 0 regions. So, you'd have to..." | Read more » almost 5 years ago
warren "Oh, actually this technique doesn't use a laser cutter - it forms an image by copying data onto the DVD at differing densities, so that the actual ..." | Read more » almost 5 years ago
Bronwen " You know what, forget what I said about kerf width-- I'm used to the range I listed, but I'm finding some charts for lasers that makes it seem lik..." | Read more » almost 5 years ago
Bronwen "Oh cool, this is a super interesting question. I think this would be tricky to do at the scale that our calibration slides currently have (the rul..." | Read more » almost 5 years ago
thuynguyen454 "Very informative post. Thanks for sharing. Your blog is very interesting, if you are interested in the topic of the game please refer here: duck li..." | Read more » over 5 years ago
liz "Looks like the Public Lab Store offers the microscope stage calibration slide as an Add-On. If you overlay your sample on this very small ruler, yo..." | Read more » over 5 years ago
warren " " | Read more » over 5 years ago
warren " " | Read more » over 5 years ago
warren "I think it will work! It doesn't seem like the width of the stage is that important. " | Read more » almost 6 years ago
j-bower "Yes, for sure. I need to double check on the plywood I have lying around - pretty sure it’s 1/4 inch. There’s also lots of scrap. I noticed you lis..." | Read more » almost 6 years ago
warren "We've ended up trying a webcam as an easier starting point, later upgradable to Raspberry Pi camera. It's working really well! And these laser-cutt..." | Read more » almost 6 years ago
warren "I heard you also have a lasercutter? These new files for the stage can be cut pretty easily by hand or by lasercutter -- would you be able to send ..." | Read more » almost 6 years ago
j-bower "Of course! Thanks for the link, and thanks Richard! " | Read more » almost 6 years ago
warren "@j-bower, thanks for offering to help print these! " | Read more » almost 6 years ago
warren "@j-bower -- Richard Bowman has taken a stab at a combined lens mount for v1 and v2 cameras! https://github.com/rwb27/openflexure_microscope/issues/..." | Read more » almost 6 years ago
stevie "ohh interesting. I was about to buy the 10x. Any fixes for this? or any troubleshooting success @kgradow1 ? " | Read more » about 6 years ago
richardbowman "@kgradow1 are you using one of the openflexure optics modules? If so, that might explain why the 10x lens didn't work as expected. Finite-conjuga..." | Read more » about 6 years ago
richardbowman "Hey, for the Openflexure Microscope I tend to buy the lenses from Aliexpress, usually Sunlight Optical but there are many suppliers. The mass-prod..." | Read more » about 6 years ago
cfastie "If that model is modified to allow for the components and the ribbon, it should be done so the new underside surfaces are not horizontal. FDM print..." | Read more » about 6 years ago
warren "Although that's not the right piece -- we actually need the wider adapter; i think Richard was just saying he thought the camera interface was modi..." | Read more » about 6 years ago
warren "Richard from OpenFlexure has proposed this piece, although I'm not sure it's compatible with both cameras -- https://github.com/rwb27/openflexure_m..." | Read more » about 6 years ago