“Back to School Quick Tips” for Microscope Cleaning At the beginning of the year, make sure that everything is tight. Hand-tighten the eyepiece tube, the objectives, the illuminator cover, and with a screw driver tighten the rubber feet on the base. Remove dirt and grease from the microscope body with a moist paper towel. Inspect power cords for cracks or damage, if necessary have a qualified microscope repair person replace the damaged cord. Clean eyepiece lens with cleaning solution and lens paper or micro-fiber cloth, using soft circular pressure. The 4x and 10x objectives shouldn’t need much cleaning, but the 40x and 100x will. Use lens cleaner and lens paper or a Q-tip to gently clean the outer objective lens. Remember to clean the 40x and 100x objectives especially after using immersion oil or after making wet mounts. Check the condenser lens (hole in stage) and illuminator cover for dirt, if necessary clean with lens paper and cleaner, and check the iris diaphragm and filter (if applicable) for damage. STAGE DRIFT. If you have a problem with your scopes drifting out of focus, there should be an adjustment collar on the inside of the course focus knob, (usually on the left side), tighten, with a clock-wise turn, using a small tool that comes with your microscope, called a “C wrench”. FLOPPY STAGE CLIPS. Make sure the stage clips are screwed in tight. If they are still floppy, take a flat head screwdriver and hold it under the part of the clip closest to the screw, and by using it as a fulcrum, with your thumb, press down on the middle of the clip. It will tighten the clip against the stage and restore the spring. Remember the best way to keep your scopes clean all year long, is to keep them covered when not in use!! Make sure to use a dustcover, even when your scopes are stored in a cabinet. “A Clean Microscope is a Happy Microscope!” Classroom Tip! Did you know that an empty mciro pipetter tip box makes a great microscope kit box? Fill it with toothpicks, tweezers, coverslips, slides, cotton, transfer pipettes, and lens paper. It keeps everything neat and handy.