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Micrsoscope photography: WARNING large pictures

SiBurning

Contributor
Thanks.

I also have a technical thread with some of the same photographs over at Photomacrography.net: http://www.photomacrography.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=10555 I really hate to have this in two places, but this is the appropriate place to host the pictures, and that's the place to get technical help.

One of these days I hope to have things sorted out well enough to take a full set and start doing this for all kinds of blades. I have about 35 types on hand.
 
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SiBurning

Contributor
2 most likely. Different stages of used blades will definitely be part of the project. Just be patient. It's been a year long learning process for me, and I'm far from ready. I don't want anyone having unrealistic expectations for this project. There's already one thread stringing the forum along. :lol: With any luck someone else will come along and do this so I can get back to watching tv.
 
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SiBurning

Contributor
For a quick check to see if that blob material was soap, I took a new blade, splashed some tap water on my face, and scraped a 2" long area of my cheek. There shouldn't be any soap in this, except whatever tiny residue may have been left over on the razor or my face.


For reference, here's a 1mm micrometer (100 divisions) showing the same field of view.

For this quick shot, I drastically reduced the light level to eliminate the prodigious reflections and glare from all that transparent material, not to mention the metal. Unfortunately, in this darkness, the subtle color and transparent effects are largely lost. It's going to be a challenge lighting this properly at higher magnification, but at this size there's plenty of opportunity to set up lights and filters.
 

SiBurning

Contributor
Discussion here... (Click the arrow after "Originally Posted by SiBurning")
Comparing the Feather and Gillette 7 o'clock (black & red) under the microscope...
These pictures each show roughly 480 microns (1/2 mm) of blade length.

7 o'clock red/black
The height on that edge coating is exaggerated by the DIC coloring.


feather


feather interior
Although it's blurry, you can (hopefully) see how the coating goes right to the edge and even beyond
 
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Very interesting and awesome pics, you have clearly spent a lot of time on this. I was given a CH-2 Olympus over a year ago and seeing this thread made me pull it out of storage. Setting it up and spending about an hour trying to clearly see the edge of a straight made me respect what you have done a LOT more.
 

SiBurning

Contributor
Thanks for the kind words of acknowledgement. Each picture takes an average of about an hour, plus several times than in reading & experimenting to learn how to get there.

It's important to have some kind of reflected lighting to see razor blades. Many compound microscopes are made for transparent objects, where light is transmitted from the base or bottom of the scope through the object and glass slide. Note the black illuminator hanging off to the right attached to the round gray piece sitting between the head and body. It contains a prism that sends the light down through the objectives, and which passes light that comes up from the objectives. In other words, the light is reflected down through the objective onto the object, and any light reflected off the object goes back through the objective and passes through to the head.The second pictures shows how the light from the illuminator shines on the razor


I think auxiliary side lighting is a good area to pursue, alone or in addition to the reflected epi-illumination. I'm pretty sure it won't be of much use with high magnification objectives because of the small working distance. Metallurgical objectives typically have a longer working distance to accommodate large objects. If you have typical objectives, they'll probably have an even smaller working distance, so you might have difficulty even with a 10X objective.
 

SiBurning

Contributor


A GEM SE @ 1000 times via SEM.
There's more SEM pictures of razor blades in Experiments on Knife Sharpening a pdf by John Verhoeven. He uses a 1980's Gillette DE and Solingen stainless steel (?) straight razor.

This work has concentrated on evaluating the effectiveness of various knife sharpening techniques by examining the sharpened edges of the knives in a scanning electron microscope, SEM. Much can be learned by examination of a sharpened knife edge with a magnifying glass or an optical microscope, particularly the binocular microscope. However, the optical microscope suffers from a severe limitation. Its depth of field becomes extremely small as the magnification increases. Because of the inherent curvature at the sharp edge of a knife, the optical images lose their usefulness at magnifications much above around 50x of so. The SEM overcomes this difficulty. One of its outstanding features is that the depth of field is much improved over the optical microscope, on the order of 300 times better. Hence, the SEM is capable of providing clear images of the edge of sharpened knives at magnifications up to 10,000x.
 

SiBurning

Contributor
Some comparison pictures follow in the next few posts

The contenders



A few straights, in various condition


For good measure... Each smaller line is 10 microns, so each picture should be roughly 600 x 500 microns, or about 1/2 mm on a side.
 
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