Vertical Travel: Don't use the vertical travel in the same limited area of travel. Supplemental bases and blocks should be used periodically to move to a different area of the vertical travel on the optical comparator. This will also prolong the life of the spindles or slides and rails.
Fixed Focal Length: Older machines which require moving of the mirror for each magnification can be upgraded to a fixed focal length lenses at the factory. This will provide less chance for magnification and or distortion errors, and provide a better quality image on the optical comparator.
Chart Rings: If you check angles by rotating the screen remember the glass can slip inside the ring. You should periodically check the alignment of the glass centerline against the travel of the table. Reset the horizontal as required. While digital angle readouts are easier and faster to read they are not generally as accurate and repeatable as a mechanical vernier.
Spindle Machines: Wipe spindles and focus rods clean (front and rear) every (30 days) Apply a few drops of lubricating oil "Mobil Vactra #2". If there is a lower oil cup there is also an upper cup. Check and add oil to both every (30 days). Newer slide machines only require periodic greasing. This should be done periodically by a factory certified technician. i.e. preventive maintenance and calibration inspections should be a part of your optical comparator.
Glass Chart Cleaning: DO NOT use solvents i.e. Windex or other glass cleaners as this will remove those precious little lines that we all need so very much. The manufacture has recommended "ivory bar" Hand soap lathered on hands and gently rubbed on glass chart and wiped off with a terry cloth or cotton towel, "no red shop rags" and rinsed with just plain old tap water.
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