# Sperm under the microscope.

1. Oct 18, 2004

### tumor

I have preety good microscope at home and I'm wondering if it is possible to see sperm and individual guys under magnification?
How do i go about it?(first step, masturbate and then?)
Thanks for any help.

2. Oct 18, 2004

### doxigywlz

you get your sperm, prepare a slide and wha-la! ..... do you know how to prepare a slide?

3. Oct 19, 2004

### tumor

Not exactly.I think I have some rectangular pieces of glass and those very thin ones too,but tell me one thing ;would I be able to see my individual guys clearly?

4. Oct 19, 2004

### nautica

why must someone tell you. Prepare you slide and find out. Part of the fun is not knowing and then finding out. All of the fun is taken out of science if you know the results before the experiment is done.

nautica

5. Oct 19, 2004

### NoTime

Aren't sperm haploid?
So it would be individual guys and girls.

6. Oct 19, 2004

### no idea

how is the quality of your microscope??If yours have 400X, i think you can see the sperms clearly .. Actually i have seen once when i visit an university. They move very quicky

7. Oct 19, 2004

### tumor

We talking about sperm here,I'm not some kind of fountain.If I once screew preparing slide I'm gonna have to wait long time to get fresh stuff.I have to be sure.
By the way NO IDEA, my microscope is made by ZEISS it has four lenses 10,45,100,1000,magnification.This mic. cost me about 3,000$Canadian ,I bought it when I was still fascinated by everything around me. 8. Oct 19, 2004 ### aychamo GEEZ that is A LOT of magnification!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (kidding) 9. Oct 21, 2004 ### no idea oh..that's great. yours even better than my school's 10. Oct 21, 2004 ### tumor Yeah I know it is a beauty.But over the years my microscope just collects dust.I have no idea what to do with it except looking at sperm Do you have any ideas? 11. Oct 21, 2004 ### Dagenais Not so. I know the results when I point my telescope up at the moon, mars, or venus. When I look at the sun through a friends scope, I have an idea of what I'm going to see, it's still fun. A lot of science stores sell slides with dead bugs on them and stuff. Ask your science teacher, he probably has tons of slides with interesting things to look at. 12. Dec 4, 2004 ### z4955 how much would you take for that microscope? 13. Dec 4, 2004 ### tumor I bought that thing few years ago brand new from ZEISS, one of the best optics manufacturers by the way.Japanese mics.(olympus) are also very, very good. Paid about 3000$ bucks.
Right now I'm not selling it, come later and I will give you for free.

14. Dec 4, 2004

### Moonbear

Staff Emeritus
Well, you should have no problem with the objectives you have available. Do any of the objectives say "oil" on them? If not, they are most likely air objectives, so nothing special needed for viewing. If they say water imm. or oil imm., then you will need a drop of oil or water on top of your coverslip that the lens will touch (make sure you clean it well when done too, especially with oil).

As for preparing your, erm, specimen...you'll have a lot to work with, so no need to worry about not having enough if you get it wrong the first time. On your slide (those are the thick rectangular glass), just put a drop or two. Touch the edge of the coverslip (the thin glass) to the edge of one drop, and then slowly lower the coverslip until it lies flat. This should spread the drop evenly under the coverslip and minimize air bubbles. Under the hot lamp of the microscope, the sperm will probably start to die off, so don't be worried if you don't see them moving as much as you were expecting.

You can use this same method to put a coverslip on anything by adding a droplet of a liquid you want to examine, or a droplet of water over something solid you want to examine. Onions are cool (get the thin membrane that's between the layers of onion). You could take a cotton swab or toothpick and rub inside your cheek to look at some epithelial cells and probably some bacteria. Or see if there's anything scary and moldy in the fridge and take a look at a smear you create from that. You need very little of any particular sample, and actually, the less the better, since thin preps will let better light through for viewing.

15. Dec 4, 2004

### tumor

First; how to bake bread and now how to view MY specimens under microscope,
Thanks Moonbear, you are precious.

16. Dec 4, 2004

### Moonbear

Staff Emeritus
Just don't try doing both at the same time. :yuck:

17. Dec 4, 2004

### iansmith

Staff Emeritus
You turn on the oven, place the prepared in oven pot, leave it 30-45 minutes and then remove from the oven when the crust is rock solid.

On a more serious note, you can actually buy lypholized yeast at the grocery store and you could make a suspension of the yeast to observed under the microscope.

First you turn on the light

Second, you have to focus and adjust and center the light. this is painful part. First to focus you have to draw a line with a wax pencil on slide. You then use the smallest objective on move the focus and the fine focu untill you seen the details of wax line. The next step is to adjust the light. there should a way to move the diaphragm. So have to close the diaphragm and the light should be a small dot. Center the dot. Once you center the dot you expand the dot to the point where it just barely came out of sight.

Once this done, refocus using the slide with the wax pencil mark. Do the focusing for every objective. Once this is done you should be capable of view your specimen.

Tutorial
http://www.bio.davidson.edu/courses/Bio111/Bio111LabMan/ILI/scopes.html

18. Dec 4, 2004

### Moonbear

Staff Emeritus
To translate that, you can use that little packet of yeast you bought in the grocery store, put it in some water, and look at a drop under the microscope! LOL! Iansmith, he's still getting basic instructions on how to prepare a wet mount, do you think he knows what lyophilized means?

Wow, that's more complex than any way I was ever taught to use a microscope! If you close the diaphragm and still see diffuse light, move it up until it forms a sharp circle or octagon (depending on the scope, it could be either). There might be a way to center the diaphragm too if the light is off to one side or another.

This is the problem with starting off with too fancy of a microscope, there's a lot more to adjust than with those dinky things that come with kids' science kits.

An easy way I've found to help students focus the microscope for the first time is to put your slide on, then adjust the stage all the way up (under the lowest magnification, not high power!), then slowly adjust it down while looking in the ocular (eyepiece) until the image comes into focus. Then, you can switch up to your higher power objectives, focusing with each one every time.

19. Dec 5, 2004

### iansmith

Staff Emeritus
We never known but just in case

www.cogsci.princeton.edu/cgi-bin/webwn[/URL]

[QUOTE=Moonbear] Wow, that's more complex than any way I was ever taught to use a microscope! If you close the diaphragm and still see diffuse light, move it up until it forms a sharp circle or octagon (depending on the scope, it could be either). There might be a way to center the diaphragm too if the light is off to one side or another.

This is the problem with starting off with too fancy of a microscope, there's a lot more to adjust than with those dinky things that come with kids' science kits.

An easy way I've found to help students focus the microscope for the first time is to put your slide on, then adjust the stage all the way up (under the lowest magnification, not high power!), then slowly adjust it down while looking in the ocular (eyepiece) until the image comes into focus. Then, you can switch up to your higher power objectives, focusing with each one every time.[/QUOTE]

This is what the prof told us adjust a microscope on the first class of microbio lab method in our first semester. I remember that the diaphragm was fixed on our microscope it could not be move up or down.

I forgot about raking up the stage all the way. This was also in the instruction. The only problem, you have to make sure the student know that you have to go down a this point. With a higher objective, the slide will collide with the objective. While I was TAing, I sometime heard a "oh" at this point. The student move the stage up rather than down.

Last edited by a moderator: Apr 21, 2017
20. Jul 24, 2009

### judoka

Hi,
I have a light microscope, AmScope. I don't know what the magnification is, on the lense it says 4, 10, 40 and 100. The 100 one is oil immersion...
I'd like to make a sperm slide. Its kind of hard to get a specimen, first being a woman... second having everything ready to go after specimen arrives...
So I'd like some step by step instructions on how to make a sperm slide, in a language easy to understand.
1. How do you make a correct sperm smear? The technique used for blood smear doesn't really work cause that thing is kind of sticky...
2. What stain to use? I have Eosin Y (1% Aqueous Solution) and Methylene Blue Chloride (1% solution as well)
3. When and how to add stain? Do you need to air dry the sperm before staining or just mix the stain with the specimen?
4. What is the lowest magnification you need to be able to see little guys?

From the slide I just made you can't see anything and I'm assuming I'm not doing it right. Or my boyfriend has some problems and there's nothing to see. Please advise ASAP before my BF develops complex :D

Thanks.