Use & Maintenance of microelectrode holders

The electrical noise produced by our holders is comparable to, or better than, that produced by Axon Instruments HL-1 or HL-U holders.

For continued low-noise we recommend you follow some simple precautions.

Before use for the first time ONLY, disassemble the holder and briefly rinse the polycarbonate pieces in 70% ethanol. These should then be blotted dry and left overnight in a dessicator to dry completely.

For the lowest noise it is essential that the holder be kept clean and dry. After daily use we recommend removal of the holder from the headstage and storage in a container with desiccant.

At least once per week the holder should be disassembled and the polycarbonate pieces cleaned. We have found that brief (10-20s) sonication in distilled water is usually sufficient for this purpose. Again, the pieces should be blotted dry and left overnight in a dessicator to dry completely.

NOTE: Continued use of ethanol, for cleaning, may have a detrimental effect on the polycarbonate parts.

The barrel on the ISO and DEO ranges have a ‘finger nail’ ridge cut into each end to enable easy removal of the barrel and O-rings from the barrel holder.

The more rigorous the low-noise demands of the recording, the more frequent should be the cleaning.

Care should also be taken to ensure that the silver wire remains straight and not compressed or twisted in any way and that there is a good (non-chlorided) contact between the wire and the gold-plated connecting pin.

It is essential that the ends of all electrode glass should be lightly fire polished to remove rough edges. This prevents scratching of the chlorided silver wire and mechanical damage to the polycarbonate barrel of the holder.