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Ping Pong Track Ball Microscope Specimen Holder Thing

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  • Sam Droege
    All: Was working with Gary Alpert this last week. Gary is an ant kingpin and full of good ideas. He showed me a very clever specimen holder made from a ping
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 18, 2011
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      All:

      Was working with Gary Alpert this last week.  Gary is an ant kingpin and full of good ideas.

      He showed me a very clever specimen holder made from a ping pong ball filled with plaster of paris.

      You place the plaster filled ball in a large heavy washer of some kind and like a track ball you can swivel it around to get the best look at your bee.

      While not a fan of using platforms to ID bees, this is useful for some circumstances and beats all other stands hands down.

      General steps

      1.  Buy a ping pong ball
      2.  Drill small hole in said ball
      3.  Mix a fairly liquid batch of plaster of paris
      4.  Quickly transfer plaster of paris to ping pong ball using a syringe or eye dropper
      5.  Wash equipment immediately
      6.  Wait for pp ball to dry
      7.  Drill a small hold in plaster
      8.  Plug with clay
      9.  Optional:  paint photographer gray
      10.  Set ball in washer
      11.  Put specimen in clay
      12.  Pivot as desired

      sam

      Sam Droege  sdroege@...                      
      w 301-497-5840 h 301-390-7759 fax 301-497-5624
      USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center
      BARC-EAST, BLDG 308, RM 124 10300 Balt. Ave., Beltsville, MD  20705
      Http://www.pwrc.usgs.gov

      SLUG IN WOODS

      For eyes he waves greentipped
      taut horns of slime. They dipped,
      hours back, across a reef,
      a salmonberry leaf.
      Then strained to grope past fin
      of spruce. Now eyes suck in
      as though the hemlock butts
      of his day's ledge there cuts
      a vixen chipmunk. Stilled
      is he - green mucus chilled,
      or blotched and soapy stone,
      pinguid in moss, alone.
      Hours on, he will resume
      his silver scrawl, illume
      his palimpsest, emboss
      his diver's line across
      that waving green illim-
      itable seafloor. Slim
      young jay his sudden shark;
      the wrecks he skirts are dark
      and fungussed firlogs, whom
      spirea sprays emplume,
      encoral. Dew his shell,
      while mounting boles foretell
      of isles in dappled air
      fathoms above his care.
      Azygous muted life,
      himself his viscid wife,
      foodward he noses cold beneath his sea.
      So spends a summer's jasper century.
            - Earle Birney
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