[Photos] Polish IBM Model F - engineers nightmares

I am currently selling a few keyboard so I thought that I can share a few photos of one of less known CCCP clone devices: IBM Model F Polish Communist Working Party Edition.
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rymut

Unread post10 Mar 2018, 09:38

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OH MY GOD OH MY GOD!

one question because I am interested!! Does it feel good?
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 09:43

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green-squid wrote:OH MY GOD OH MY GOD!

one question because I am interested!! Does it feel good?

It feels like living in under rule of CCCP.

Keycaps are very thin and springs are very light (less than 45g to bottom out) so sound is quite poor, it sound can be improved by using original IBM keycaps.

Springs are probably pen springs from company in Poznan - city in poland where the keyboard was made.
rymut

Unread post10 Mar 2018, 09:55

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lots of transistors there its interesting comparing the electronics of similar boards and finding they are different. The feeling might be improved by having new foam if you have the tools to cut the foam and also enough clamps to enable the two plates to be shut again after the new foam is in place
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 10:13

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Anakey wrote:lots of transistors there its interesting comparing the electronics of similar boards and finding they are different. The feeling might be improved by having new foam if you have the tools to cut the foam and also enough clamps to enable the two plates to be shut again after the new foam is in place

You are exactly right, both plates are hold together by two screws (not ribbons) and clamps/latch that can be easily opened. I did not try to open it because whole PCB is rather flimsy attached to the board.

As for transistors from what I tested years ago their purpose is to implement anti-ghosting and blocking for the keyboard matrix layout which is a bit different than in current keyboards.
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rymut

Unread post10 Mar 2018, 10:42

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rymut wrote:
green-squid wrote:OH MY GOD OH MY GOD!

one question because I am interested!! Does it feel good?

It feels like living in under rule of CCCP.

Keycaps are very thin and springs are very light (less than 45g to bottom out) so sound is quite poor, it sound can be improved by using original IBM keycaps.

Springs are probably pen springs from company in Poznan - city in poland where the keyboard was made.

So is that a no? That would suck. I was very excited to get an F for a good price. :(
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 10:56

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if you were ever to find a Model F at this price then you will be faced with much the same problem of bad feeling and sounding switches until replacing the foam. As the foam holds the barrels against the barrel plate if the foam is disintegrated then the barrels are not pressed as close to the plate so in turn there will be a greater distance before the spring is compressed, therefore effecting all of the atributes that you have mentioned in the post. I am sure that if the foam is replaced it will make the springs appear stiffer as there will be more compression with the shorter travel distance and the sound should also be improved. I have recently restaored a genuine Model F XT that was suffering from the exact same problem, took it appart gave everything a clean to gte the old disintegrated foam off then cut new foram and now it is working just like new.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 11:08

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Anakey wrote:if you were ever to find a Model F at this price then you will be faced with much the same problem of bad feeling and sounding switches until replacing the foam. As the foam holds the barrels against the barrel plate if the foam is disintegrated then the barrels are not pressed as close to the plate so in turn there will be a greater distance before the spring is compressed, therefore effecting all of the atributes that you have mentioned in the post. I am sure that if the foam is replaced it will make the springs appear stiffer as there will be more compression with the shorter travel distance and the sound should also be improved. I have recently restaored a genuine Model F XT that was suffering from the exact same problem, took it appart gave everything a clean to gte the old disintegrated foam off then cut new foram and now it is working just like new.

Really?? That is very disappointing. I thought Model Fs didn't need any restoration like the Ms need. And foam? I have absolutely no idea how I even get it and cut that thing without $1000 equipment. Not the seller's fault, but I might as well give up on Fs as well. :(
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 11:25

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foam cost litterally 4 euro and you can cut it with anything that is as sharp as a scissors, don't give up that easily !!


I bought this for my F122 and beamer, hope it can be useful to you too !!

http://www.ebay.fr/itm/EVA-Foam-Sheets-...2749.l2649

(2mm is the best apparently for Model Fs) (Yes, it's in french but I'm sure you know to replace .fr by whatever your country's letters are ;))
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 11:32

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The foam is quite easy to cut you would just need to buy a set of leather punches in the correct size and follow the guides that are available on here depending on what type of F you have you should be able to get the punches for €10-15 and the foam for a few more €. I used the foam underlay that is for laminate flooring as i had quite a lot left over but generally any foam 2-3mm should be fine.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 11:32

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green-squid wrote:So is that a no? That would suck. I was very excited to get an F for a good price. :(

It is really weird experience, keys are very light and spring sound is inconsistent around the board, also I think that travel distance is smaller than in normal IBM model M.
rymut

Unread post10 Mar 2018, 11:35

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Myoth wrote:foam cost litterally 4 euro and you can cut it with anything that is as sharp as a scissors, don't give up that easily !!


I bought this for my F122 and beamer, hope it can be useful to you too !!

http://www.ebay.fr/itm/EVA-Foam-Sheets-...2749.l2649

(2mm is the best apparently for Model Fs) (Yes, it's in french but I'm sure you know to replace .fr by whatever your country's letters are ;))

That sounds awesome, but he wrote back to me and said that they feel inconsistent and not even up with an M. :cry: Oh well. I hope he can sell it.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 11:37

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BUT! What if it only feels inconsistent because of the bad foam????
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 12:05

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green-squid wrote:BUT! What if it only feels inconsistent because of the bad foam????

Not because of the foam but because of the springs, some are lighter than others, some are heavier than others, some are almost silent, some are audible.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 12:15

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rymut wrote:
green-squid wrote:BUT! What if it only feels inconsistent because of the bad foam????

Not because of the foam but because of the springs, some are lighter than others, some are heavier than others, some are almost silent, some are audible.

I see. Thank you!
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 12:17

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That's uh...something else.

That PCB set up tho Lol Jesus Christ, this would be cool to own just to look at it and show it to people.

@green-squid you could probably just stick some model M springs on the flippers if you wanted to fix the unbalance,
or just source some model f ones, OR if lot lizard ever picks up his project again you could try his new springs. so many options! :0

But I guess that idea really depends on if the flippers are the sameish.. idk how any of that would work out, but it'd be fun to tinker with.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 13:50

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Ir0n wrote:@green-squid you could probably just stick some model M springs on the flippers if you wanted to fix the unbalance,
or just source some model f ones, OR if lot lizard ever picks up his project again you could try his new springs. so many options! :0

But I guess that idea really depends on if the flippers are the sameish.. idk how any of that would work out, but it'd be fun to tinker with.

I gave up on it. The springs will probably cost too much! Or would they?
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 14:14

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green-squid wrote:
Ir0n wrote:@green-squid you could probably just stick some model M springs on the flippers if you wanted to fix the unbalance,
or just source some model f ones, OR if lot lizard ever picks up his project again you could try his new springs. so many options! :0

But I guess that idea really depends on if the flippers are the sameish.. idk how any of that would work out, but it'd be fun to tinker with.

I gave up on it. The springs will probably cost too much! Or would they?

Probably looking at $80 USD on the low end unless you can find a bigfoot F or an XT cheap to part out. But at that point it'd be better to just use the original F instead.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 14:36

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FXT wrote:
green-squid wrote:
Ir0n wrote:@green-squid you could probably just stick some model M springs on the flippers if you wanted to fix the unbalance,
or just source some model f ones, OR if lot lizard ever picks up his project again you could try his new springs. so many options! :0

But I guess that idea really depends on if the flippers are the sameish.. idk how any of that would work out, but it'd be fun to tinker with.

I gave up on it. The springs will probably cost too much! Or would they?

Probably looking at $80 USD on the low end unless you can find a bigfoot F or an XT cheap to part out. But at that point it'd be better to just use the original F instead.

That's what I would want! A real model F. Or just an f that feels good. Doesn't matter if it's XT or AT, or wheter it's dirty.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 14:38

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green-squid wrote:
I thought Model Fs didn't need any restoration like the Ms need. And foam?


https://deskthority.net/workshop-f7/ibm-model-f-122-key-terminal-ansi-mod-by-harry-t11102.html?hilit=harry%20ansi
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 14:49

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FXT wrote:
green-squid wrote:
Ir0n wrote:@green-squid you could probably just stick some model M springs on the flippers if you wanted to fix the unbalance,
or just source some model f ones, OR if lot lizard ever picks up his project again you could try his new springs. so many options! :0

But I guess that idea really depends on if the flippers are the sameish.. idk how any of that would work out, but it'd be fun to tinker with.

I gave up on it. The springs will probably cost too much! Or would they?

Probably looking at $80 USD on the low end unless you can find a bigfoot F or an XT cheap to part out. But at that point it'd be better to just use the original F instead.

True, but it wouldn't be as neat.
And besides.. XTs aren't that hard to find for 40-60, or i've had really good luck. I don't think I'd take any of mine apart for this how ever.. I would give it a go with M springs though!
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 14:55

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Honestly if he does get an XT or AT I'd recommend not taking it apart unless it absolutely needs it. The damn spacebar stabilizer is a nightmare, especially on the XT.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 14:58

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fohat wrote:
green-squid wrote:
I thought Model Fs didn't need any restoration like the Ms need. And foam?


https://deskthority.net/workshop-f7/ibm-model-f-122-key-terminal-ansi-mod-by-harry-t11102.html?hilit=harry%20ansi

My god! :o And I thought an M bolt mod was easy!
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 15:06

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Ir0n wrote:

True, but it wouldn't be as neat.
And besides.. XTs aren't that hard to find for 40-60, or i've had really good luck. I don't think I'd take any of mine apart for this how ever.. I would give it a go with M springs though![/quote]

Where can you find an F in europe for $40-50?
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 15:08

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green-squid wrote:Where can you find an F in europe for $40-50?

ooo Europe huh? Not sure.. ;S Shipping would kill it for you.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 15:15

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green-squid wrote:
Ir0n wrote:

True, but it wouldn't be as neat.
And besides.. XTs aren't that hard to find for 40-60, or i've had really good luck. I don't think I'd take any of mine apart for this how ever.. I would give it a go with M springs though!

Where can you find an F in europe for $40-50?[/quote]
I've been looking too, but its hard to get one on the cheap. Like really hard :(
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 15:26

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I was really lucky to get my XT for £54, but i think that it was only so low because the seller thought all it was good for was parts. They had a complete XT system yet the keyboard was not working. When i opened it up i discovered that the bolt that makes contact between the back plate and the PCB had been screwed in from the wrong side, had the bolt being correct i think that the keyboard would have worked and would have been sold with the rest of the system.
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IIRC I got my XT k/b for around €30 shipped and in excellent condition. I'm still looking for an F 122 but I doubt I'll ever find any for what I would consider a decent price... :evil:
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 16:00

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green-squid wrote:
green-squid wrote:
I thought Model Fs didn't need any restoration like the Ms need. And foam?


My god! And I thought an M bolt mod was easy!


There is probably no need to do everything that is shown in my thread. I enjoy breaking old IBMs down completely into individual parts and re-building something that is clean and immaculate inside and out.

Drilling the holes for a Model M bolt-mod is as much, or more tedious as any single thing done in the F rehab, but the result of spending 2x-3x the time on an F yields a much more satisfying end product.
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Unread post10 Mar 2018, 16:26

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