Caring for a Microfilm Reader

As we’ve already talked about how to clean your scanner, we figured we’d also give you some pointers on how to care for your microfilm or microfiche reader. Just like with scanners, and probably even more so, microfilm readers can be incredibly expensive to fix. Many are older, and finding the right parts you need can be a hassle. Luckily Imaging Systems has a huge warehouse full of used and new microfilm parts to help you out. I digress. Doing routine maintenance and upkeep of your microfilm reader can save you serious cash in the long run.

You will need: 

  • Soft Cloth
  • Glass Cleaner
  • Small Screwdriver
  • Mineral Oil
  • New Light Bulb (optional)

Again, we know, it can be easy to look at a machine and feel overwhelmed. For reference, you should be looking at a machine resembling this. You are? Okay good.Microfilm-ReaderDon’t be scared. We’re in this together. Deep breaths, here we go!

  1. Position yourself in front of the reader.
  2. Lift the viewing glasses–the two plates of glass that are below the magnifying glass. Just move the lever attached to them and then you should be able to easily open ’em up.
  3. Using your soft cloth and glass cleaner, gently clean the plates. Let them air-dry before you close them back into place.
  4. Remove the reels that hold the microform (this is where your screwdriver comes in). Just remove the screws on either side of the spindle, which will expose the gearing. Put a small drop of the mineral oil on the gears, reattach the spindle, and slowly turn it. This helps to avoid rust. Do the same thing on the other reel. Close them back up and put the screws back in.
  5. Find the small door with the handle. This is where the light bulb is. If you need a new one, replace it. If not, use the soft cloth and some more of the glass cleaner to gently clean the bulb. Again, let it air dry. Close the door.

You’re done! You can exhale now. If you’re someone who didn’t know to be doing this routine with your microfilm reader, check our online store or give us a call at 608-276-5559 and we’ll see if one of our technicians can help you get your machine working like new again!


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