Tag Archives: review

Gilson Pipetman M : Review

Apologies on the long overdue review, but I’ve been a bit distracted with science and life over the last few weeks.

I was loaned a P200 from the Gilson Pipetman M range by my Fisher Scientific rep a few weeks back. If you’re used to the manual Gilsons (they were all I had during my undergraduate years), the Pipetman M will look very familiar. The form of the pipette is essentially the same, with the plunger replaced by a big button. The display is also different, instead of being numbers like on a car speedo, there’s a sharp digital display on the top of the pipette. Apart from the big button, there’s a smaller button for changing modes, and that’s about it. The tip ejector is the same, and the pipette feels as light as the manual Gilsons dotted around the lab.
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VWR e-pipette: Review

So today I got to try an electronic pipette, specifically this model. The local rep very kindly arranged a loan of a 0.5-10uL and a 10-200uL set of them (serious kudos to the rep though, he’s the only person to find me samples to actually trial).

The instruction manual I was loaned was pretty basic, covered everything you need to know, these are the buttons and this is how to set the functions. I couldn’t figure out how to set the reverse-mode for standard pipetting, but I imagine there’s more if I had gone poking through the settings.

The pipettes don’t need a fancy charging stand, you can just plug them in and bung em in a drawer. However, you can’t use them while they’re charging, which is a potential drawback.

Now for the moment of truth: are they any use at pipetting and how are they for arthritic hands…

As they were a loan of someone’s working set, I just trialed them with water and a balance (can’t be contaminating someone else’s stuff!). They pipette grand, they’re easy to programme and the various mixing/multidispense/normal modes work grand.

And for my hands? Not much use unfortunately, after about five minutes of playing with them, my wrist started to hurt and I found it difficult to get a comfortable grip on the pipette itself. The aspirate/dispense button is around the back of the main barrel of the pipette and the tip-ejector button is directly on the front. In order to operate the aspirate/dispense button with my finger, I had to hold my hand away from the pipette, which was not comfortable, essentially I could press the button OR hold the pipette comfortably. I had no problems with the tip ejector, which is good as that can be a problem for regular pipette usage (for those times when you REALLY JAM ON THE TIP).

All in all, it’s not comfortable for my hands but it seems like an ok pipette otherwise. At €380 (.ie list price) for a single pipette, it’s not overly expensive for an electronic one but you’d still want to be happy with what you’re buying. Sadly, I’m going to have to continue looking….