hand processing/inhouse vacuum set up

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From:Gayle Callis <uvsgc@msu.oscs.montana.edu> (by way of histonet)
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Our hand processing is done with the aid of vacuum, small vacuum
dessicator, made by Wheaton, O-ring design, to not mess with horrible
vacuum grease, greases up everything, and seizes up on occasion.  You can
put a container in dessicator, with a stir bar on bottom, put whole
setup on top of magnetic stirrer for agitation.  Dessicators come in
three sizes, small (really small!) medium and large.  Extra O-rings
were kept on hand in case the solvent caused some stretching, just hung
the used one in hood to evaporate fumes from rubber (?) and put in a new one,
was never at a loss of a good vacuum.

The vacuum source can be an inexpensive Nalgene
hand vacuum pump, approx $50 or so, get the bigger one, they have
two sizes, and build up you hand/finger and wrist muscles.  An inhouse
water vacuum source works well, but may not pull enough for the vacuum oven.

We also have a vacuum oven, for paraffin infiltrations, can be heated
to melting point of paraffin, a vacuum pump, small one, operates this. The
therometer hangs in the window of door, nice for temp checks.

Vacuum pumps will not like solvent fumes, and hopefully, you  have
a fume hood available.  Fumes eventually kill the pump, not so great for you

If you want alternating vacuum/pressure, you can pull vacuum, release after
time and pull vacuum again.  Your timing will depend on the size of the
and type tissues, xylene substitutes work well.   It could all be done
during daytime hours.

This is our cheap setup used for renal biopsies 10 years plus!  and
for tiny mouse embryos coming up.

Gayle Callis

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