Antique Binocular Microscope by Charles Collins, London, circa 1870
Large Early Binocular compound Microscope by Charles Collins, London, Circa 1863 -1870. Titchfield St & Polytechnic Ins. This instrument is one of the earliest models made by Collins; in 1871 he adopted the rack and pinion to the draw-tubes, which this model does not have. It also gives 2 addresses which would indicate this was made shortly after starting his business in Gr. Microscope height: approx 18 inches (46cm). The 5 ½ x 6 ¼ inch claw-footed base of this instrument supports the two 4 inch-high pillars with trunnion and rectangular limb. The tubular tailpiece supports the arm and gimbal for the 2 ¼ inch plano-concave double mirror. The limb has a triangular bar with rack and pinion (damaged); at the top of the bar is a 4 inch Ross type arm with long lever and screw adjustment. The tubes holding both eyepieces are manually adjusted. Later models by Collins had a rack and pinion mechanism here. The large rectangular stage measures 4 ½ x 4 inches, with a sliding magnetic bar to position slides. Below the stage is a dovetailed plate holding a rotating disc of diaphrams and polarizer tube. This slides in a groove to hold it in place. The two body tubes are 8 inches and has two objectives on a dovetailed arm, sliding in a groove, so that change of powers can be instantly made. Above the objectives is the sliding prism box, held in place by a small hair spring, containing both a Wenham and Nicol prism. Two eyepieces with contoured side shades that Collins added to his eyepieces, which blocked side light from entering the microscopists eyes. No makers mark or numbering. The microscope is mounted on a wooden plinth, held in place by a single screw underneath the base. The mahogany box is placed over the top of the microscope and held in place by 4 catches (1 broken).
The box has a door half way up which opens to reveal a small storage area, with drawer for slides and accessories. Mahogany case measures: 49 x 22 cm x 22cm. Cosmetically the microscope is in quite good condition retaining most of the original lacquer, which has worn over the years commensurate with its age.
There is damage to the rack and pinion mechanism so the microscope objective will only raise 0- 4 cm from the stage. The rack has missing teeth (see photo). The eye pieces and prisms are all original and in good condition.
Optically working well, but lenses are dusty and need cleaning. The mahogany base is worn around the edges and has pieces missing. The polished microscope box is in good condition and has a nice colour to the mahogany.
It is missing 1 of the 4 catches that hold it to the base and its key. Two objectives, attached to the microscope, without storage cases. Live box, top glass disc is cracked.
The first adverts for his business are from May 2, 1863 Lancet probably indicate the beginning of Charles Collins business. Two microscopes were offered, a monocular for 3 pounds, 10 shillings, and a binocular for 5 pounds, 15 shillings, 6 pence. Early advertisments indicated that he worked at the Royal Polytechnic Institute, London, prior to establishing his own business in 1863.. This is a very early instrument by Collins and is pre-1871, as the Collins business moved to 157 Great Portland Street in 1871.
The item "Antique Binocular Microscope by Charles Collins, London, circa 1870" is in sale since Monday, March 19, 2018. This item is in the category "Collectables\Scientific Collectables\Scientific Instruments\Microscopes". The seller is "pacman25" and is located in Harwich. This item can be shipped to United Kingdom.
- Type: Scientific Instruments
- Sub-Type: Microscopes
- Material: Brass
- Period: 1800 to 1900
- Country/Region of Manufacture: United Kingdom