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CGeezer



Joined: 25 May 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 6:56 am    Post subject: Just found you. Reply with quote

Hi my name is John and I live in Blackburn, Lancashire, I have just found this forum and am trying to take in all of the fantastic photos and innovative set-ups used to take some of these photo's.

I have only recently attempted stacking photos but already have a love of Macro photography that I really want to explore more in depth.

I have most recently been making my own macro rail from an old tile cutter base (free) and using an old micrometer (£4.00 posted from an auction site) fitted to one end to push the stage along manually. It seems to work 'okay' but I would like to automate the movement and have drawn up evil plans for a mk2 that will be very cheaply made I hope. I have uploaded a photo of my DIY rail and the resulting stacked BAD image, as it intended to be used for DIY I think it is far better to be used for photography. I have an excuse for not doing any more tiling at least. Anyway I hope to tap into all of your experience and learn lots. I hope I don't annoy you all too much with my questions. The other images are another attempted stack of a Buttercup and the dust cap from the front of my camera drilled to take a microscope eyepiece when I want to get in really close and attach a microscope element on the front using electrical tape \o/

Hope you like them, try not to laugh too hard.

John




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canonian



Joined: 31 Aug 2010
Posts: 890
Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 7:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi John Milton and welcome. I like your DIY work, especially the tile cutter. Smile
What do you use for stacking software?
It produces some strange blobs, maybe due to movement.
I can also see some sort of controller behind the rail.It it an automated setup?

Can you post the full text, written on the objective?
You normally need some space (depending on the optimal tubelength) between eyepiece and objective.
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CGeezer



Joined: 25 May 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 8:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Fred

I am using Zerene Stacker and the text on the objective is

DIN10 This is from a Swift M3200 Microscope that I purchased second hand from a classified sale site. There are two other objectives but these are it seems a little too powerful for me unless I alter the tube length maybe?

The other objectives are HI DIN 100 125 AND DIN 40 065

The mechanics that you can see is actually the helping hands base that is holding the LED lights Smile

I think that the blobs are a dirty objective maybe and one of my questions is how to clean them safely?

Thanks for the friendly welcome Smile
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canonian



Joined: 31 Aug 2010
Posts: 890
Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry, I mistook this thing for an automated controller:

The working space -distance between lens and subject- and the DOF -depth of field, the area that you can get in focus- on the 40X and 100X might be unworkable.
If there's dust on the frontlens it it easy to clean with a fibrecloth what you use for cleaning glasses, when between the lenses it's not that easy and you maybe have to disassemble them. Not a job for the faint-hearted.

The blobs can also be produced by using an incorrect setting in contrast treshold in DMAP, the ghost images perhaps by randomly ordered images?

With the blueish color of the LED light you might want to set your white balance to 'custom'.
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Last edited by canonian on Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:59 am; edited 1 time in total
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rjlittlefield
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Joined: 01 Aug 2006
Posts: 19090
Location: Richland, Washington State, USA

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CGeezer, welcome aboard! Very Happy You've come to the right place for info about all things macro. We love DIY contraptions.

CGeezer wrote:
I am using Zerene Stacker

I believe that most of the "blobs" that Fred mentions are due to using DMap with settings that are not appropriate for the subject. For example the collection of small dots near the stem of the buttercup looks typical of what happens when the contrast threshold is set too low. See the tutorial "How To Use DMap" HERE, in particular the section labeled "Problems You May Encounter".

--Rik
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CGeezer



Joined: 25 May 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

OMG you have a good eye Smile I was not going to mention that.. well not just yet Smile

It is a trigger device that I nagged my friend to create for me to get water drop collisions, but it has evolved into so much more. www.phototriggers.com
If you want to see it in close-up . I am thinking of combining it with a macro rail to use sorta like the stackshot but with loads more features besides and cheaper. I have been told that an Arduino is better for controlling the macro rail than the trigger though. Smile

Thanks for the tips, I can see I will learn much from here.



canonian wrote:
Sorry, I mistook this thing for an automated controller:

The working space -distance between lens and subject- and the DOF -depth of field, the area that you can get in focus- on the 40X and 100X might be unworkable.
If there's dust on the frontlens it it easy to clean with a fibrecloth what you use for cleaning glasses, when between the lenses it's not that easy and you maybe have to disassemble them. Not a job for the faint-hearted.

The blobs can also be produced by using a high setting in contrast treshold in DMAP, the ghost images perhaps by randomly ordered images?

With the blueish color of the LED light you might want to set your white balance to 'custom'.
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CGeezer



Joined: 25 May 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

rjlittlefield wrote:
CGeezer, welcome aboard! Very Happy You've come to the right place for info about all things macro. We love DIY contraptions.

CGeezer wrote:
I am using Zerene Stacker

I believe that most of the "blobs" that Fred mentions are due to using DMap with settings that are not appropriate for the subject. For example the collection of small dots near the stem of the buttercup looks typical of what happens when the contrast threshold is set too low. See the tutorial "How To Use DMap" HERE, in particular the section labeled "Problems You May Encounter".

--Rik


Thanks for the advice and the links Rik.. and the friendly welcome too Smile
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Pau
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Joined: 20 Jan 2010
Posts: 4377
Location: Valencia, Spain

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

John,
Your setup is really strange.
If I understand it well, you're holding toghether the objective and the eyepiece, and this is really very far of its desing: in a microscope the distance between the objective shoulder and the eyepiece internal stop is usually of 150 mm (if the objective is marked 160, as this is part of the DIN standard). I wouldn't expect that this kind of optical system may work well but..who knows?
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CGeezer



Joined: 25 May 2012
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 10:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pau wrote:
John,
Your setup is really strange.
If I understand it well, you're holding toghether the objective and the eyepiece, and this is really very far of its desing: in a microscope the distance between the objective shoulder and the eyepiece internal stop is usually of 150 mm (if the objective is marked 160, as this is part of the DIN standard). I wouldn't expect that this kind of optical system may work well but..who knows?


You are most [s]probably[/s] definitely right. I have used this rail with one of my macro lenses (the buttercup was with this method) and I am very much in the 'knows not a lot category' I'm hoping that I can get better results over time Smile I could maybe use the microscope with my adapted eyepiece but have far too many options and not a lot of decent results with stacking "so far"
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canonian



Joined: 31 Aug 2010
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Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

John, was the Swift M3200 Microscope in working condition or did you use it for just the parts?
You can salvage the stage and use it to finefocus the stacks (Z-axis), the objectholder for positioning the subject (X- and Y axis) and the tilecutter for course movement perhaps?
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CGeezer



Joined: 25 May 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 11:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

canonian wrote:
John, was the Swift M3200 Microscope in working condition or did you use it for just the parts?
You can salvage the stage and use it to finefocus the stacks (Z-axis), the objectholder for positioning the subject (X- and Y axis) and the tilecutter for course movement perhaps?


Hi Fred the MS is fully working apart from the bulb.. so Philistine that I am I cut the cord and removed the light unit and now use a £3.00 LED as in the Rail photo. I am more than willing to strip it out if you think it is a better option for the rail. Here is my mock up of what I thought I 'could' make but it is still in the drawing board stage and I never normally follow plans. Please note it's not to scale and my first ever CAD drawing that looks remotely like what I was thinking of Smile

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canonian



Joined: 31 Aug 2010
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Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 11:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CGeezer wrote:
I am more than willing to strip it out if you think it is a better option for the rail.

Please don't if it is still in working condition.
There might come a time when you simple mount your Nikon on the mono eyepiece and explore a whole different world (and can make use of the 40X and 100X).
Only if broken I would advise to salvage the focusblock for use of stacking.

That's quiet a setup you have in mind.
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CGeezer



Joined: 25 May 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 11:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That looks like it could work very well Fred. My main consideration is whether to strip down a working Microscope to make a macro rail Smile

I want to automate the process to avoid any movements and will I hope get something made up as soon as I can get some sort of stepper motor working. I took an old dvd apart and have fitted it onto my tile cutter on plastic conduit but I do not know if I should just get a decent motor at start as I don;t want to get half way along and then have to start fresh swapping it out. I guess I will take in all the advice I can get and read a lot in this forums threads Smile

BTW I love your AV pic..
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CGeezer



Joined: 25 May 2012
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 11:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

canonian wrote:
That's quiet a setup you have in mind.


I normally start big and then end up compromising for something much more simple Smile
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CGeezer



Joined: 25 May 2012
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon Jun 25, 2012 11:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It looks like I may have to take a photo of my AV I would like to use with this set-up so that I can get it within the 6k confines of the forum settings Laughing
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