Thursday, June 29, 2023

3D Printed Action Cameras to Microscope Adapter Now on Thingiverse

 The first upload to Thingiverse in the series of action camera to microscope adapters can be accessed on

Search for Thing #6101113

Action Camera Cradles

We've uploaded two different cradle versions to be used with a single thread insert for mounting the microscope sleeves.

ActionScope Cradles (V3 & X6)

The ScopeAction V3 cradle has been tested with the following action Cameras.

Cradle V3 possibly fits many more Chinese made action cameras; but, we have not tested more than these two cameras for now.  Both of these cameras are available on Amazon.  The Xilecam did not come with a remote trigger.  But, both allow for setting a "narrow" field of View of 70 degrees, which is the best setting for using with a microscope.

The ScopeAction X6 cradle has been tested with the Xilecam X6 60fps camera. It was purchased for $49.99 from Amazon and does include a remote trigger.  (More about this camera below)

The cradle threads are printed as a separate "thing" and simple insert into the cradle.  

ActionScope Cradle Thread Insert

While the threads can be glued, there is no need to do so as the sleeves are designed to hold the threads into place.  Just be careful to align the locking clips of the threads into the cradle to ensure the back of the thread insert is flush with the cradle.

Action Camera to Microscope - Complete

Microscope Sleeves

Our plan is to create sleeve sets for a wide variety of microscope types and sizes.  But, Thing #6101113 includes just the sleeves that fit microscopes having 28.00mm diameter lenses.  Sleeve sets for 27.80mm and 28.85mm will follow.  While only one, or perhaps two, sleeves will be suitable for any camera/microscope combination, we have uploaded fifteen (15) different sleeves for eye relief distances between 9mm and 23mm.

28.00mm Sleeves with Eye Relief (9mm, 13mm & 23mm)

 We recommend starting with the 13mm eye relief for the DragonTouch and Xilecam 4K 30fps and the 9mm eye relief for the Xilecam X6 camera then bracketing find the sharpest and largest image without light flare.

We hope to compile a chart with recommendations for sleeve diameter and eye relief distance for each action camera/microscope combination and post them here.

Here is an image captured with the Xilecam X6 mounted on a Wolfe Student Microscope.

Xilecam X6 camera at 48mpx

 But, what is really nice is the Xilecam's 4K 60fps speed in capturing live video and playing it back using the VLC viewer. By slowing down the action and zooming in using the VLC viewer features, it is easy to see the details of protozoan locomotion.  

This capture was created using the Xilecam X6 at 4K 30FPS with an older Wolfe Student microscope at 40X.  The camera's field of view (FOV) was set to 70 degrees rather than the default of 170 degrees for most action camera photography.




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