how to hold small bugs??

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Mr.Stone
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Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:17 am
Location: South Africa

how to hold small bugs??

Post by Mr.Stone »

Good afternoon all :)

Ok so i got hold of a microscope focusing block ( free :lol: ) and mounted my bellows on there and got a random nameless objective that takes decent pix, i still got a couple of problems to sort out but im getting there...

But what really bugs me is mounting small subjects, like ants and small flys ( about 3-5mm). They just dont have enough body to stick a needle into, even when using a really thin 0.4mm needle. Ive searched the forum but i havent really come up with anything, so i need help please!!

How do you guys do it?

I got a horizontal setup, camera is mounted to bellows which is mounted on the focusing block.

Thank you :)

SteveGreen1953
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Location: Sycamore, IL USA

Post by SteveGreen1953 »

I use a bit of glue on the tip of the needle.

Mr.Stone
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Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:17 am
Location: South Africa

Post by Mr.Stone »

Thank you Steve :)

NikonUser
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Post by NikonUser »

See if you can locate an entomologist. He/she should have some Minuten Pins.
These are short but can be glued to a longer pin. They come in thicknesses of 0.15mm and 0.20 mm.
NU.
student of entomology
Quote – Holmes on ‘Entomology’
” I suppose you are an entomologist ? “
” Not quite so ambitious as that, sir. I should like to put my eyes on the individual entitled to that name.
No man can be truly called an entomologist,
sir; the subject is too vast for any single human intelligence to grasp.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr
The Poet at the Breakfast Table.

Nikon camera, lenses and objectives
Olympus microscope and objectives

seta666
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Post by seta666 »

SteveGreen1953 wrote:I use a bit of glue on the tip of the needle.
+1

Mr.Stone
Posts: 156
Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:17 am
Location: South Africa

Post by Mr.Stone »

Thank you, NU, seta666 :)
Ill look for a entomologist around here, from previous experiences ive had with the labs here when i tried micropropegation it would be hard getting that one person that is willing to help you. As soon as they hear that your a private person they tend to not want to help. But its worth a try!

Spring is right around the corner, and im hoping for a great bug season :D

SteveGreen1953
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Location: Sycamore, IL USA

Post by SteveGreen1953 »

I use acupuncture needles (mainly because they’re easy to find on ebay.) The most common diameter is .25mm, but a quick look reveals .18 .22 .25 and .3 with lengths from 13mm to 50mm. The ones I have are 50mm long of which 25mm is wrapped with what looks like copper wire for a grip.

abpho
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Post by abpho »

Search E-bay for insect mounting pins. They come in many sizes. #000 (smallest diameter) to 7, I believe. They come in stainless, or black. And are packaged in quantities of 100.

Here is another link on E-bay for more pins.

Size 000 Superfine - Length 38mm. Diameter .25 mm.
Size 00 Micro Pins - Length 40 mm. Diameter 0.27 mm.
Size 0 - Length 40 mm. Diameter 0.29 mm.
Size 01 Medium - Length 40 mm. Diameter 0.32 mm.
Size 02 Medium - Length 40 mm. Diamter 0.38 mm.
Size 03 Medium/Large - Length 40 mm. Diameter 0.45 mm.
Size 04 Large - Length 40 mm. Diameter 0.56 mm.
Size 05 Large - Length 40 mm. Diameter 0.60 mm.
Size 07 Extra Large - Length 52mm. Diameter 0.70mm.
I'm in Canada! Isn't that weird?

Mr.Stone
Posts: 156
Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:17 am
Location: South Africa

Post by Mr.Stone »

@ Steve, Ive also thought about using the accupucture needles, not sure where to get them around here tho, but shouldnt be to hard.

Thank you abpho:)

I took Nu's advice and contacted an entomologist, and the lady was kind enough to donate me some minuten pins :) Just have to go and pick them up. Thanx Nu!!

ChrisR
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Post by ChrisR »

For a bendy bit of wire, strip some mains type copper flex/cable/wire. It's not strong enough to pierce anything much, but you can solder it, and make little loops or fold-over at the end to hold a bit more glue, and have it as long as you like.

Repeated bending hardens copper & makes it stiffer. If you use enough you can fashion a stand out of the non-bug end.

Put a drop of super glue in a teaspoon, dip your wire or pin into the edge, then hold it to the bug. Breathing on it speeds up setting!

Mr.Stone
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Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:17 am
Location: South Africa

Post by Mr.Stone »

Thanx for the advice chrisR :)
I have alot of copper wire around here, in any thickness, so ill take some home and try this

ChrisR
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Post by ChrisR »

The extra-flexible type used for multimeter probes can have fine strands - one of the standards is 26 strands 0.07mm diameter. Somebody might find a use?

I worked long ago for a Tube Works, on a visit their sister company, we were told of their world record finest tube, which was made for artificial insemination of mosquitos.
:shock:
I've often wondered how they stop them wriggling...

Harold Gough
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Post by Harold Gough »

ChrisR wrote:world record finest tube, which was made for artificial insemination of mosquitos.
A new twist on "size matters"! :wink:

Harold
My images are a medium for sharing some of my experiences: they are not me.

Mr.Stone
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Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:17 am
Location: South Africa

Post by Mr.Stone »

Wow :shock: now that is some fine tube!!

johan
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Post by johan »

In my (limited) experience it's really tricky to mount small bugs with tiny needles. What works best for me personally is a toothpick, which I colour black with permanent marker beforehand. I tip the end in a small dab of superglue on a piece of paper, use the toothpick to pick up the bug, usually on the bottom of its abdomen. Then I let it hang and rest for a bit to harden it, just with some blu-tack. Finally to mount it for a photo, I have a watkins & doncaster insect examination stage and I just push and fix the toothpick onto the sharp end, cutting away excess. Works for me! :)

For larger specimens (say 5mm upwards), instead of using a toothpick I use "entomology pins", again dabbed in superglue, but I have a bit of cork on the end of the stage, and slot the pin in using a precut slit. Then cut the rest off. I tend to use .55mm ent pins the most but also use .27mm depending on the size of the thing. The whole operation is usually done with tweezers, I find it easier.
My extreme-macro.co.uk site, a learning site. Your comments and input there would be gratefully appreciated.

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