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Step by step assembly

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When building and working with OpenSPIM it is your own responsibility to make a risk assessment before starting any procedure and on the basis of the risk assessment to make sure appropriate safety precautions are taken to avoid damage to any person or property.

Inform yourself about the manufacturers instructions for all parts used for the openSPIM before you start assembling the openSPIM.

Follow all instructions in the manufacturer’s operator’s manuals, especially the safety precautions.

We take no liability for any personal or property damage caused by the openSPIM or any parts described on this page.

Warning: Depending on the laser class of the laser, the laser beam or even scattered light from the laser may be extremely harmful to eyes and skin. Some lasers can potentially cause blindness after direct eye contact.

Before you start to assemble please make sure you have all needed parts or you know how to improvise them. The light path of our original design is 50 mm off the top surface of the ThorLabs metric optical breadboard (part #: MB3045/M) where everything is installed.

The optical breadboard has a length of 300 mm and a width of 450 mm, with a grid of 12 x 18 M6 threaded holes spaced 25 mm apart from one another. We will use a coordinate system similar to a spreadsheet (like OpenOffice Calc or Microsoft Excel) to make it easier to know where each component and capscrew is positioned. Starting with A1 in the upper left corner (as seen in the images), and ending with R12 in the lower right.

Please also forgive the confusion about the Youtube videos and the corresponding images, the documentation was done in two different locations months apart from each other and small design changes happened in between.

There is a short introduction to the optics of a SPIM available as the SPIM Optics 101. This will also give practical hints for optics alignment and laser savety.

Assembly overview

OpenSPIM buildup SolidWorks and real
Step Description SolidWorks rendering Real picture Video tutorial
1 Install corner mirror
Real 02.jpg
2 Install laser heatsink
Real 03.jpg
3 Install laser
Real 04.jpg
4 Installing rails
Real 05.jpg
5 Installing laser bouncing mirrors
Real 06.jpg
6 Installing sample chamber
Real 07.jpg
7 Align the laser    
8 Installing beam expander
Real 08.jpg
Real 09.jpg
9 Installing cylindrical lens
Real 10.jpg
10 Installing vertical slit
Real 11.jpg
11 Installing the telescope
Real 12.jpg
Real 13.jpg
12 Installing the detection axis
Real 14.jpg
Real 15.jpg
13 Installing the camera
Real 16.jpg
Real 17.jpg
14 Installing the 4D motor system
Real 18.jpg

Now connect the system to the computer and you are ready for operation.