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Member postings for Ron Tocknell

Here is a list of all the postings Ron Tocknell has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Gillett & Sibert [Scottish microscope makers]
30/01/2018 12:39:33

This is clearly an old thread but I do feel moved to write something about these microscopes.

Back in 1973 or thereabouts, I was a young RAMC medical assistant stationed at Tidworth Military Hospital. Although my post was the Reception / Casualty department, my fascination with microscopes and precision lab equipment often drew me toward the pathology lab during quiet periods. The pathologist was a keen microscopist and the G & S 'Conferance' was pretty much the lab workhorse. At that time, Vickers was the standard mid range model in most labs with Zeiss at the top of the range for more specialised work. Many different microscopes were needed for many different applications and each was dedicated to a specific application. The 'Conferance' was developed as a basic modular microscope to address this issue. With interchangeable heads, objective turrets, stages, condensers and so on, it could be quickly adapted to meet any specific application. It also had a large viewing screen to replace the ocular head for use as a teaching microscope and this is probably what gave it the 'Conferance' name. It also featured a unique focussing mechanism that was operated with a single knurled wheel rather than separate coarse and fine focus wheels. Initial turn of the wheel activated the coarse focus until the user turns it just past the required point of focus. The same wheel is then turned in the opposite direction and this automatically activates the geering into fine focus. It is an extremely intuitive focussing system.

The 'Conferance' was an extremely popular lab scope and this model still frequently crops up on Ebay. I have a G & S and I also have a Karl Zeiss 'Jena'. The G & S is my 'go-to' scope of preferance.

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