The difficulty of cross sectioning small fungi caps to give thin "comb" sections of the gills led me to think of this ad hoc and very much Heath Robinson method of getting the job done slightly easier.
Thought I'd post it here in case anyone else might find the method useful, or might be able to improve on it with a little more thought. (Please post any better suggestions - of which there must be many
The contraption was made from two plastic plant markers, sellotaped together, to enable a "V" shape to be formed. (The rounded ends were subsequently clipped off with a pair of wire snips).
A suitable section of fungus cap is inserted into the "V" trough, (using finger pressure to keep it in the correct place) and the trough is then inserted into the folded hinge, so that the end of the cap section pokes out.
The "V" trough can easily by slid along the hinge using little & ring fingers, whilst holding the hinge with index finger & thumb. (Still leaves one finger free to keep the sample in place in the trough).
The single edge blade uses the edge of the hinge as a guide for parallel cutting, and can cut several sections one after another, with the sample being slid slightly forwards after each cut. (NB: photo shows a dry blade, but this works best with the blade wet).
I don't claim this to be anything other than a very low tech means to an end - but it does the job much better than straight forward hand sectioning.
What's needed . . . . . . The contraption as held
Guiding the blade . . . . . End Result.
I look forward to seeing some better thought out versions soon.