in recognizing
I rediscovered the microscope, in 2005. I owned one when I was a kid...It was a Christmas gift from my grandma, I was  8 years old and with that small instrument I've spent a lot of wonderful time "exploring" a part of the universe that is so close... That kid is now 53 and has decided to treat himself to a professional used one.
Surely it has worked a lot in the laboratory in which it has spent many years, but now refurbished and properly renewed, with the aid of modern technology, it is still a formidable instrument...I hope you're gonna enjoy this.
I own both a Nikon Labophot and Optiphot, that have been technology enhanced.
My "hobbyhorse" are the protists and in particular
sarcodina...amoebas are sarcodinians, but even radiolarians and foraminifers are.
Above it's a slide show illustrating some of my beside on the right, from up  to down you see three sarcodinians and three ciliatas, among this last...two are of a
paramecium, the most "famous" among ciliates. We call them ciliate because this protists are completely covered with cilias, in theese images you see only those on the edge because of the "narrow" field of view.
This cell has been recognized thanks to Marco Brusadin sul link "riconosciute", alcuni estratti dellla mail inviata.
These two images of  living diatoms on the left, I've took them with the Labophot coupled to the Cullmann flash, the objective I've used is a water immersion 40X Lomo, there is a distance of few months from these and the ones you see up on this page (the three amoebas and the three ciliates) difference is remarkable. These beside here have just a little correction in photoshop ...the six above I took with the same Lomo objective and same condenser, but my "retouch" in photoshop is quite heavy... colours are altered. It's just my improvement that makes the difference.
I've worked a lot on eliminating vibrations.
In my
microphotography page you are going to find an explanation of my actual setup.

The second of these diatom probably has been engulfed by an amoeba.
Starting from up...the first two of these videos are made using an AV Canon camcorder in afocal (with the camcorder lens taking the place of the human eye) on a photographic eyepiece, the third is always in afocal...same camcorder with the described setup under this link microphotography difference is that in the last one I've avoided vignetting.
Questo protisata nel link "da riconoscere"
T  H  I  R  D  P  L  A  N  E  T
Time has passed since I've received the Nikon Optiphot 1, was may 2007. The stand came from an ebay auction and it costed a couple of hundred dollars...then I wrote to my yahoo group stating that I was on the run for a DIC setup.
But in the meanwhile my marriage has ended and I' ve had to face a  separation and an "avalanche" of events has took my status to a general decrement under every aspect of my life, not least the sudden abandon of my hobbies....I'm not going to bother who's reading this note with all the consequences of such an event...let's say that is quite an earthquake experience.
Anyway, my DIC project has been aborted so far (it's too pricey ) so I've gone for a reconstitution of the original assembled microscope body, none excluded, with just a difference, a modern led illumination system.

Addendum 2009:
In an auction I've found a  second Optiphot with I've assembled a complete one.

I'll see if the DIC project can go on.
Above a series of images of the same amoeba...the condenser has been lowered and rised to gain a better "compromise" in achieving a better 3D oblique illumination.
I got to say thank you to the few good ones I've met in yahoo groups.
A "huge" thank you to
Microcosmo and Microscope for their patience, suggestions and didactic help...I've grown up with you people and found support online every time I've needed...each one who has a sirious interest should consult the threads asking for help, following the suggestion of skilled people.
Ebay is to mention, this has been fundamental to find "everything" I've bought, all my equipment comes from online auctions, microscope and small parts, objectives, trino heads and condensers, photo relay eyepieces....everything is  pricey but it's used, so a fraction of the original stuff philosophy is "small paces" and soon you'll realize that some things you are looking can assemble or better you already have...remember that old Cullman flash you used many years ago? Well it's perfect to be adapted, with the aid of new rechargeable batteries, on the microscope to freeze fast moving protists...with the aid of new rechargeable  batteries. So the corner of the house, in which the microscope is located, grows like your skill.

Watch out for wash-outs  (you could find some)...again here, listen to the others in your group, accept suggestions of people more expert than you, and go for reliable brands.
Last update 02/11/2010
The microscope, as I sense it, is quite a reversing telescope...yes you don't agree with me, but in some way a microscope is a device that you can use exploring the "universe" on another seeing problems, no clouds...and when it's too cold out there, and the weather is no good, your microscope is still there for you to enjoy another adventure.
You will never stop observing and discovering new things that will enrich your perception of this magnificent fractal that is our universe.
Did anybody, out there, ever watched in a microscope a live specimen, and bored has turned the television on?