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Has anybody come across "PocketScope"? Answered

I've been browsing this website, and I quite fancy one of their pocket microscopes.

However, I have had no response from email or letter.

Has anybody encountered the company or microscope through a different route?

http://www.pocketscope.com/

Discussions

The thing is, when a company won't respond to an email regarding a bulk purchase (I had temporary control of the Science department budget), I really don't relish handing over my own cash...

Thanks for your links, but they aren't quite what I'm after - the PocketScope is a modern interpretation of the original Leeuwenhoek model - a single, droplet-sized lens providing decent magnification in a pocket-proof package.

No, I'm not selling them...

. Yeah. Trying to say "tomorrow" in Spanish doesn't come across at all without the tilde.
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I am trying to figure out how to code a small script that will fix this...

Oh. Sorry...I don't know then!

How 'bout making your own??

Hmmm... I have an idea on how to make a small glass lens, something I read about, but haven't tried...

Why not take them from small pocket magnifying glasses? Dollar stores over here are lousy with them.

Leeuwenhoek microscopes, and the PocketScope, have a lens that is only 3-4mm across, and nearly spherical.

Some disposable camera lenses are the right width, but not round enough.

I would actually have to make the lens, not scavenge it from other devices.

?? What is the lens from a CD player laser like??

Umm, make the lens, glass rod, blow torch... Heat the glass, pull it thin, let cool, break and then heat the thin end until it balls up, takes practice, I made one when I was 14.

Wait-it needs to be completely spherical? Or you don't want ti to be spherical?

I want spherical, getting spherical is the problem, but TUA has pointed me the right way.

rather expicit instructions are available in "The Scientific American book of projects for the amateur scientist, Stong (1960)" which depending on your tolerance to copyright infringement is available from resellers or on the web at places like....... well, you'll find it.

I know! I have opened up several, and they are very teeny, like, an 8th of an inch across maybe, and convex (or concave, depending on which way you hold them!). Sometimes they are blue, sometimes clear.

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westfw

10 years ago

Hmm. I wonder if there's a a way to make a usable microscope (what, 50x?) out of a cheap webcam and SEVERAL disposable camera lenses? Or for that matter, with some surplus microscope pieces...

Yes (I've even got one of those.) But built from commodity/surplus parts so that it would cost ~$30 instead of $100 (and provide "The Builder Experience")

The company website has both the About Us and History pages "under construction," copyright notice at bottom of site pages is 2001-2004, the store is trying to sell an expensive webcam that Amazon doesn't list and the closest relative is indefinitely out of stock, and when you actually hit an online store "Order" button, nothing happens. I think no one is home.

The microscopes are not on eBay (including eBay UK), and given the low price it seems fair to say they were too cheap to survive long, and the lens was probably just plastic. Note certain details. From product specifications: "Patents pending;" what is there to patent, a historical microscope design or a portable pocket one? "PocketScope.com has the PocketLum Illuminator, a battery powered full-color LED illuminator accessory that snaps onto the base of the PS-150 PocketScope." From the PocketLum page: "Firmly attaches to the underside of the PocketScope using industrial strength mushroom-head velcro." In all my years I've yet to hear velcro snap.

The Wikipedia Leeuwenhoek article mentions how he made his lenses mostly like TUA said, using lime glass. So, you're looking for a small clear sphere?

You mean a ball lens? The theories and equations concerning their use are a good read. They're readily available, and depending on material rather affordable.

Yeh, I was guessing it was a dead site, but who pays to keep a commercial site running?

And if they have been in production, why are there no second-hand ones knocking about the web?



It definitely looks like I need to make my own. My project list is so long, I wonder if I have time in the Summer break...?

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westfw

10 years ago

While not directly on-topic, have y'all seen Caveman Chemistry site? I haven't bought the book yet, but it seems the idea is to re-create some classic inventions without relying on the output of the modern industrial world to supply the raw materials...

Hmm we have one somewhere, more like a box, small metal box with two lenses, brilliant... We got it in a job lot of antique lighters...

Two lenses?

Anyhting like this? (except maybe silvery metal or white plastic? If so, that's a McArthur Microscope, which is also on my wish-list.

Pretty much, except single 50X magnification, so in one little box shape... One of the best I ever had was a simple flipper lens one, they have six or seven varying magnification lenses and you add and subtract to get the desired effect...