Re: big honkin' samples

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From:"P. Emry" <> (by way of histonet)
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Hi Jeff,

I got a lot of help from others on the net when I started doing large pig
bones.  I'll pass on what I have learned and used.

I had a fast-release chuck that slipped so that small bites were
being taken out of the specimens.  I got one of the screw
down chucks which solved my problems and gave me the ability to use large
metal bases (aluminum with a grid)  with mega-cassette sized blocks
attached that fit into the chuck.  I inherited these things with the lab
so I don't know where you can buy them.

I also use a meg-cassette by filling it with paraffin. It fits nicely in
the screw down chuck. Unfortunately, the mega-cassette has a hole where
the hook on the lid fits. When you fill it you have to plug the hole
with bits of cooling paraffin or it leaks.  I bought a glue gun and
plugged the hole on a second cassette I use for embedding.

(If there is a vendor listening, redesign the mega-cassette so that hole
is closed and won't let the paraffin leak out.  Having to use two
cassettes per specimen is not a good thing and trying to plug it up with
cooling bits of paraffin is time consuming.)

Am I the only one with this problem or have you real "pros" found a way to
avoid this problem?

Best of luck.

U of Washington, Seattle

On Fri, 12 Nov 1999, Jeff Crews wrote:

>      Does anyone have any experience with embedding and sectioning
>      large-cross-section tissues? We have some porcine vertebral samples
>      that measure about  2" x 1 1/2". I can get larger cassettes for
>      processing them and make some larger embedding molds, but how do you
>      suggest that we clamp them in the microtome? This is the first time
>      that we've had to do something this large, and I'd appreciate hearing
>      from others about it. Thanks again!
>                                                 jc


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