Pipetting 101

Introduction

Welcome to the Pipetting Kit

The micropipette is the crucial tool for any hands-on molecular biologist, and this kit is designed to help you master it.  

You’ll start by familiarising yourself with the correct handling and operation of any micropipette.
Building on this foundation, you will work through practical exercises, which have been modelled around real-life scenarios you are likely going to encounter when doing DNA-based molecular biology work, including with Bento Lab.

Once you have mastered these exercises, you should have no problem applying your pipetting skills to real molecular biology experiments.

Before you start

A micropipette is a precisely calibrated scientific instrument and should be treated with care to avoid contamination or damage.
So before you start, take not of the following.

Don’t use a pipette without a tip!
Pipettes are designed to be used with a plastic pipette tip. No liquid should ever enter the shaft directly

Don’t dial a pipette past its volume limits!
This will stress the pipette mechanism and may cause damage and inaccuracies.

Don’t let the pipette tip touch anything to avoid contamination
Accidental contact can result in cross contamination of samples, reagents, equipment, or surfaces. If a tip touches something by accident, eject it and use a new one.

Gathering your resources

Included in Pipetting 101 Kit

1 6 practice dyes  (standing in for expensive reagents)

2 3 activity cards and a plastic petri dish

3 8 x 0.2 mL PCR tubes

4 2 x 1.5 mL centrifuge tubes

Included in Biotech 101 Kit

5 20 µL micropipette

6 20 µL pipette tips

7 beaker

Also needed

8 optional but very useful to keep tubes standing straight:
a tube rack (such as the one that comes with Bento Lab)

9 container for used pipette tips

You will also need tap water for some of the activities.

How to learn with the Pipetting 101 Kit

In addition to these online guides, the kit comes with a printed booklet that contains the most essential information and step-by-step guides that are helpful to have on hand when doing the practical exercises.
Each page in the booklet has an individual QR code and shortlink, which you can scan to jump directly to the online guide (which includes more detailed images and videos of each step).