Narishige's PC-100 glass micropipette puller is a dual-stage vertical pipette puller system that provides reliable and consistent production of micropipets / glass needles with tip sizes ranging from 10 microns (10µm) to tenths of a µm.
The PC-100 incorporates several key features that make it an ideal choice for producing microinjection needles and pipettes for patch clamp experiments. The built-in power source is specially stabilized to deliver a uniform amount of current to the heating coil each time to make uniform glass needles and pipettes. The pulling force is provided by the earth's gravity, so you can't get much more stable or reliable than that. There are no electromagnetic coils to burn out. The force can be varied by adding or removing the included weight blocks (all of which are shown installed in the photo).
Heater levels for both single and double pull operations can be adjusted, and the heater level is shown by a highly-visible digital display.
During the pulling process, micropipettes are shielded from air currents by the use of an acrylic shroud. This excludes external drafts that might otherwise affect the shape and size of the micropipette.
Two pairs of weights (two light and two heavy) are provided for adjustment of the pulling force. Also included are a spare heater coil (PC-10H), and a sample of 1.0mm I.D. glass microcapillary tubes with internal glass fiber (GD-1).
Narishige now offers the more automatic and full-featured PC-100 to replace the old PC-10, PP-830, PP-83, and even older model PB-7. It serves as a lower-cost and more robust alternative to Sutter's P-30. In fact, we use the PC-100 here at Tritech Research to pull our pre-pulled microcapillary needles (see MINJ-PP) that we sell for C. elegans, Drosophila, Xenopus, Zebrafish, and transgenic mouse work.
Here is a video that shows how PC-100 parameters affect needle tip length and taper:
GD-1 Glass Capillary with filament sample pack, Spare PC-10H Heater, Power Cord
Q: How can I troubleshoot my broken PC-100 to find out what the issue is? For example, if the display only reads 0.0 and will not increase nor will the coil heat when the red button is pushed.
A: First, for doing your testing, we suggest using the "Heater" setting on the selector switch, rather than the Step setting, so that the heater will be on all the time and not be dependent on the button push, carriage position, etc. A blown fuse would result in no display at all. You can see what happens by removing the fuse and comparing to see if the fuse is currently "working".Checking / changing the heating coil is a great place to start. If it isn't making good contact on both sides or is broken or nearly broken, that would definitely cause a problem and it might be intermittent at first.
Q: After recently replacing the coil and adjusting the heaters, my PC-100 is still having issues. I am not able to pull any decent pipettes. What could be the issue?
A: In general, higher temperatures will give a longer, finer tip and lower temperatures will give a more blunt tip. Please also check that the new heater is positioned so that the glass tube goes exactly down the middle of the coil (for even heating).
Q: How can I set the parameters of the PC-100 to achieve a specific type of needle tip?
A: There are many variables to get a particular size needle opening equivalent to a particular resistance. These include not only the settings of the puller, but also the glass used, the type of heater used in the puller, its condition, etc. Our main suggestion is that you contact a lab that is doing similar experiments and try to replicate their protocol for preparing your pipettes. The PC-100 can do both single and double pulls, so I'd start by finding out with is better / more typical. Generally speaking, a higher heater setting will give a longer thinner tip, and a lower setting will give a shorter tip that goes from the full size to a point over a shorter distance. Using all of the weights makes the tip get fine and be sharp quickly, and using less weights makes the tip longer and more gradual. The tip may come out of the puller with the right size opening, or sometimes the tips will come out completely sealed, and you will have to perform a secondary operation to open the end of the pipette to the size desired. For example, you can use the acid etching protocol described in the FAQ section at the bottom of this page.
Q: Our PC-100 has stopped working and seems to be overheating. What are some troubleshooting tips?
A: The first thing we recommend is checking the heating element itself. Make sure that it is not bent or touching back on itself (if you have the coil type). Also make sure that it is still perfectly centered around the pipette, and not nicked.
Q: How can I replace the coil on the PC-100?
A: First make sure the unit is unplugged / off, because the heater is pre-heated even between pulls, it's just not orange-hot. There are little metal bars that hold the heater on each side. You loosen / remove them to change the heater. The tedious part is that when you put the new coil in, you have to carefully position it so that the capillary tube will go right through the center. This is done best by having a piece of glass in the unit before the final tightening of the bars.
Q: Can the PC-100 produce sharp electrodes needed for purposes with resistances around 50 MegaOhms?
A:Yes, the PC-100 is great for pulling very sharp pipettes with a sub-micron opening.
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Glass Microelectrode Puller
- Ships in 1-5 days
Narishige's PE-22 produces multibarreled electrodes, longer and thinner electrodes, and other special microelectrodes.
The PE-22 is an updated version of the previous PE-21 and PE-2 pullers, which were long established as the best Ecclecs and tower type pullers, which featured new electrical characteristics for greater safety and stability. For safer operation, the PE-22 has a metal cover attached to both the heater unit and the shaft.
Like conventional pullers, the PE-22 stretches the glass capillary vertically by using the gravitational force of its own weight and the weight of the magnet. The device that holds a glass capillary employs a drill chuck system that accepts 2 - 6mm glass capillaries. Moreover, using a bundle of 1mm glass capillaries, multibarreled microelectrodes can be produced.
From capillaries ø2 to ø4mm thick, the PE-22 can produce the long, comparatively firm electrodes used for nerve center experiments, or multibarreled electrodes combining three, four, and seven ø1mm glass capillaries. The magnet and heater are adjusted from the digital display where the maximum output of each is represented as 100: this makes adjustment easy and contributes to greater accuracy in mass production. By combining two conventionally separated units into one, the model saves a considerable amount of space.
Tritech Research recommends the PE-22 Needle Puller in nerve center experiments where microelectrodes are inserted deep into the brain. In such experiments, parallelism is essential to a long tapered tip. To achieve the parallelism required, the adjustable range of the microswitch has been increased. As compared to conventional models, the PE-22 is capable of producing microelectrodes of more different shapes. The microswitch is now calibrated and thus easy to adjust, which contributes to improved reproducibility.
Glass Capillaries (2mm) Glass Capillaries (3mm) Spare Heater Chuck Handle Power Cord * PE-21HC (for 3mm) is fitted to the main unit.