Introduction: DiY Microscope for 0$ (great for Your Childrens!)

My childhood was always full of science and electronics, maybe because my dad was playing with that kind of stuff.
When I was 13 I made my own "microscope" (the same way like I did in this Instructable) I was looking at stamps, small insects and that was very fascinating for me, I was looking at something that was so small and at the same time so big.

This project is great if you have kids, and you want to show them some awesome stuff, you know learning while playing. I think I will make this project with my kids in future.

Today, in age of Smart devices and big screens shining everywhere small project like this can be more atractive for kids than todays technology. (Who remember VHS tapes? Post in comments!)

Let's go to work! Enjoy!

Check out new instructable that you can make with your child here!

Step 1: What You Will Need ?

This project is so simple that can be made using household items that you will find in every house, so let's check what do we need to start.

  • two pencils (just regular pencils, what do you thought)
  • magnifying glass
  • Clear sticky tape (you need to find tape that doesn't get messy or dirty after you un roll (?) it )
  • flashlight
  • water (I used syringe, it was more convinient)
  • something to look at
And that's all. All you need to make simple microscope. It is so simple that you can let your children do it themselves! That will be fun!

Come on!

Step 2: Make Base!

You need to place your pencils on desk parallel with 5-6 cm of space between them.
Then just tape them to desk with clear tape. There should be space between desk and tape.

Step 3: Injection!

Now take your syringe and carefully place some water on the tape.
Make sure that you don't make this drop too big. It should look like convex lens.
My drop, started to focus light just after placing it on tape!

Place your flashlight just like I show it on the photo to light up your subject.

Step 4: Here Is the Part When the Fun Starts!

Now the fun starts! Place something interesting under the tape. I took my geocaching sticker.
Use magnifying glass over the drop to focus and enjoy your homemade no-cost microscope!
You can adjust height of tape by using different pencils (thicker, thinner) .
Most interesting things I found that you can show to your kids are:
  • fly
  • fabric
  • photos in magazines
  • just regular paper!
I Hope you find this instructable interesting, and enjoy making this simple tool of my childhood, now I'm 18 and I still enjoy making that kind of things, they helped me a lot to understand optics and physics in future life.

Leave me a comment what you think, Post photos of your microscope, I want to see smile on childs faces! Have fun!
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by kondzio29

Step 5: A Little Update/tip

Quick Tip:
You can make this without Sticky tape! Just take razor blade and pour a drop into the hole and you have just made a lens!

Thanks for Quesnelquack for idea!

If you have idea on how to improve this instructable post it in the comments and I'll add it in this step

Comments

author
ImageMaker (author)2014-01-02

This is similar to the original "simple" water drop microscopes invented by van Leeuwenhoke in the 17th century. He made them strong enough (with smaller drops in a pinhole) to see microbes in a drop of pond water.

author
kondzio29 (author)ImageMaker2014-01-02

Thank you for your comment! I didn't know about that. All life is learning something new...

author
rocky cool (author)2016-06-17

awesome!! experiment it is too easy. I m 11 but I love science a lot . if you have more ideas please post

author
ualbuquerque (author)2015-01-11

what do you think of the idea of aligning razor blades with these lenses to increase power?

author
Georgewister (author)2014-05-30

It is sooo simple.

I too will definetely try!

author
don kreisman (author)2013-12-31

A GREAT IDEA!!!!!WHEN I WAS TEACHING KIDS CAMP, I MADE A 3 CENT MICROSCOPE ( A MODERN VERSION OF THE LEEUWENHOEK MICROSCOPE BUILT BY HIM IN DELFT, HOLLAND 1764 ) I HAVE TO SAY THAT YOU SURE BEAT THE COST OF MINE. BEST OF LUCK AS YOU CONTINUE TO EXPERIMENT WITH NEW IDEAS.
DON

author
sarawelder (author)2013-12-10

this is fun and great for kids
thanks for sharing!

author
kondzio29 (author)sarawelder2013-12-10

Thank you for feedback! :)

author
talkinglens (author)2013-12-09

I made an easier one for an early grade science project. I took the tip of a magnifying bulb from a flash light and mounted it in a hole in a tongue depressor hinged to a second one and mounted a slide on the second. It worked very well when held over a light source!

author
Quesnelquack (author)2013-12-08

I used to use an old razor blade. Put a drop of water in the hole in the middle (where the attachment of the safety razor housing goes) and voila! The water would stay there because of surface tension. Adding magnification with an additional loupe is a nice touch.

author
kondzio29 (author)Quesnelquack2013-12-09

I will try and maybe post some photos if it works ;) thanks for idea

author
bob3030 (author)2013-12-09

Amazing how something so simple is so intriguing. Thank you for posting.

author
nutley (author)2013-12-08

Use to find that tiny code that is printed on paper that comes out of your printer!

author
kondzio29 (author)nutley2013-12-08

where is it located? If you have photos post it here, i will attach it to my instructable :)

author
djredi (author)2013-12-08

Polish scientists are the best in the world ! ! !
good job kondzio

author
kondzio29 (author)djredi2013-12-08

Thank you! ;)

author
teddywolf (author)2013-12-07

Great idea. My boy do like it!

author
kondzio29 (author)teddywolf2013-12-08

I'm glad that you enjoyed making this project :)

author
annabenson6 (author)2013-12-07

Cool idea

author
Yoloswag975 (author)2013-12-06

DO you cache? I <3 Caching!!

author
kondzio29 (author)Yoloswag9752013-12-07

Yes ;) I cache

author
fish_dude (author)2013-12-05

this is awesome and so simple
I will have to try it

author
kondzio29 (author)fish_dude2013-12-06

Don't forget to post photos!

author
jmwells (author)2013-12-05

This the type of microscope that was used from about 1200 to 1850. They just used two drops of water and two pieces of glass. Much of our early science started with such a device.