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Spencer binocular microscope – circa 1933

An early model binocular microscope by Spencer with a serial number of 13712 that would date it to circa 1933. A similar instrument is featured in the Billings collection catalog as item #279, page 149. It measures 13" tall when closed, and is signed. "Spencer, Buffalo, USA" on the front. It has a triple nosepiece with three Spencer lenses: a divisible 10x n.a. .25 that also yields a 4x, a 44x with n.a. .66, and a 1.8mm fluorite oil lens with a 1.30 n.a. The substage condenser is a Spencer and marked as achromatic with an n.a. of 1.30. The instrument has a mechanical stage with full lateral movement and a locking mechanism beneath. The eyepiece width is adjustable as is the separate focal length of the eyepiece tubes. Three pairs of eyepieces accompany the set: a 10x pair that is unmarked but appear to be original Spencer; another 10x pair marked "Compens", and a third 12x pair marked "Compens". The coarse focus is rack and pinion. Fine focus is a micrometer knob with indicator. The substage assembly has a variable diaphragm and is centerable with two adjustment thumb screws. The mirror is plano-concave, and is in very good condition, noting some age separation on the concave side that does not affect usage. The black finish of the microscope is in good condition, but there is brassing apparent on the chromed parts that is evidence of considerable use. An identifying number has been scratched onto several parts, but is not very noticeable unless you are looking for it. The microscope is functional, as is. It comes with its own wooden case with metal carry handle, lock and key. There is an accessory drawer inside, along with two filters – a clear blue and a frosted blue – and a dark field filter.  It is a suitable example of the first practical beginning of the binocular era.

Item 1162

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