[Histonet] cryo-embedding and other "cool" stuff. :)

Debbie Keith debbiekeith <@t> cox.net
Mon Jan 22 17:27:04 CST 2007

for those that helped me with my cryo-issues AND those that were 
amused/tickled/glad it wasn't them....I realized there was another 
installation of the "cryostat debacle of 2006".

so many people helped me during the "crisis"... and a couple worth 
Barry (technician) of BelAir, Don (repair technician) from Leica and Jan 
Minshew (HTL) with Leica.  THANK YOU GUYS!!!   :)

after replacing the parts i'd gotten from BelAir and doing everything Jan 
suggested, i felt like i sorta figured it all out.  the machine still had 
some odd behaviors, or pecidillos, if you will.  overall, i felt i could 
work around them.  maybe even embrace them the way you would the behaviors 
of your own teenager.  begrudginly....  but you'd still hug it when it was 
behaving.   ;)

well, after our newfound compatibility.... the ex-sailor was scheduled to 
work.  what could he do in ONE day?!

funny you should ask. :)

he tightened the screw on top so HARD... that he stripped the threads 
COMPLETELY out and you could remove the lever but simply lifting it 
up.  eeeeeek.

i called the repair folks and they said it would be WEEKS to get the part 
in.  so, i asked "can't i just heli-coil it?"  the repair guy was VERY 
skeptical.  he sounded like he didn't even WANT to know what i was up 
to.  (smart man!)

i took it home and my hubby fixed it with parts we had in the garage!! (we 
have a few british bikes in the garage, so there are metric bits/parts all 
over!)  the cryostat was not only GOOD as new... but BETTER!  the original 
part is aluminum....  and the heli-coil is steel... so it is stronger, 
harder and FASTER.  it is the Steve Austin of cryostats.

before the holidays i'd been sorta looking at cryo-embedding systems.  the 
ones out there are great... but they aren't really Mohs-Friendly.  know 
what i mean?  so i MADE my own.  i can't BELIEVE how awesome it IS!!!  i 
did exhaustive research on metals/heat syncs/thermal conductivity... and 
created a system that reduced my processing time by 50%.  my 
turn--around-time is about 10 minutes from fresh tissue to slides on the 
scope. (i hand stain!)  is it too good to be true....?  nope.  every day, 
when i clean the inside of the cryostat...  i lovingly caress the chuck 
holder... and blow a kiss at the cryo-embedding system.  (utilizing 
universal precautions the whole while! natch!)

so, now...  my slides are purty, my turn-around-time is shorter and my 
cryostat is making "THE noise".  it IS a happy new year, indeed.



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