Help with a cursed model F 122

Wazrach

15 May 2019, 21:35

I gave up. Fuck this shit. Binning this shitty foam since it's obviously no good.

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//gainsborough
ALPSの日常

15 May 2019, 21:42

Could be the thickness of the foam, but I remember using 2mm sheets as well. How many clamps are you using? I remember having 4 or 5 clamps around the whole thing - definitely near the tabs too so that the plates were as close together as I could get them at those points - made it easier for the tabs to slide together.

Wazrach

15 May 2019, 21:48

//gainsborough wrote:
15 May 2019, 21:42
Could be the thickness of the foam, but I remember using 2mm sheets as well. How many clamps are you using? I remember having 4 or 5 clamps around the whole thing - definitely near the tabs too so that the plates were as close together as I could get them at those points - made it easier for the tabs to slide together.
Plenty of clamps. I think the issue is that I just couldn't get the foam to compress near the middle tabs. I cba to make a new one. Complete waste of time and money. £330 for this.

Wazrach

15 May 2019, 21:48

i just feel like pulling my fucking hair out right now

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snacksthecat
✶✶✶✶

15 May 2019, 21:53

//gainsborough wrote:
15 May 2019, 21:42
Could be the thickness of the foam, but I remember using 2mm sheets as well. How many clamps are you using? I remember having 4 or 5 clamps around the whole thing - definitely near the tabs too so that the plates were as close together as I could get them at those points - made it easier for the tabs to slide together.
10 clamp champ right here. Well, two ratcheting clamps and eight squeeze clap things.
Spoiler:
what I'm talking about:
ratcheting clamp
Image

squeeze clamp
Image
Seriously! I used 1/8" foam because that's what my research told me. By "research" I mean googling it and choosing the first thing that came up.

I wish I had a picture because it looked hilarious. There was not an inch of open space where I could fit another clamp. Even with all that, I barely got it back together.

So yeah, I don't know the recommended thickness but don't go my route.

By the way, does the thickness/type of foam affect the key feel much?

Wazrach

15 May 2019, 23:09

oh yeah and I couldn't get the stabiliser inserts back into the barrel frame, which of course, i ruined with a blotchy inconsistent paint job. i have just lost all my motivation. nothing i do ever works. i'm fucked if i can't even apply myself when it comes to keyboards, which of course is all i know and talk about.

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//gainsborough
ALPSの日常

15 May 2019, 23:31

Don't get discouraged, my man. Failure is just another stepping stone to success. I've definitely had my share of failures with projects in this hobby and as a result of learned what not to do in certain situations and I've researched better ways to do certain things. Your paint job could be fixed for example if you sand it back down to bare metal and start over. The inserts can be reinserted with glue (or something... I actually can't help with that one, I was scared to take mine out so I just painted right over them, hahaha). My point is that you can still finish this project! Model Fs are extremely resilient - you'd have to really mess something up for them to be in a state that can't be repaired. Everyone's first model F is a learning experience!

@snacks yeah I used squeeze clamps as well!

Wazrach

16 May 2019, 20:00

i think i'll just sell this. can't get the stabiliser inserts back into the barrel frame and i've mangled them trying. don't want to resort to other keycaps..

Wazrach

16 May 2019, 20:03

can't be fucking bothered anymore

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PlacaFromHell

16 May 2019, 20:22

Calm down, please. You don't need all of them, you can use model M keycaps and stabilizers on some keys and they will be the same as in your keyboard. I shaved some of the plastic to make them fit. What if you make a thread asking for someone else to restore it? I would gladly do it for free but the shipping cost from Argentina to UK would fucking kill you. At least with keyboards, all has a solution.

Wazrach

16 May 2019, 20:32

PlacaFromHell wrote:
16 May 2019, 20:22
Calm down, please. You don't need all of them, you can use model M keycaps and stabilizers on some keys and they will be the same as in your keyboard. I shaved some of the plastic to make them fit. What if you make a thread asking for someone else to restore it? I would gladly do it for free but the shipping cost from Argentina to UK would fucking kill you. At least with keyboards, all has a solution.
I do appreciate the offer, but I'm kind of broke right now - at least until Tuesday. I also couldn't accept that kind of service for free.

Wazrach

16 May 2019, 20:37

I might ask just_add_coffee if he would be up to the challenge. I've seen his F122 restoration for someone else and I REALLY dig the sound: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-4O_m4vOkQ

I also know JAC has experience with the bolt mod, although I am close to doing that anyway. I just need to drill holes through the barrel frame. I'd take this further, but I am super inexperienced and I don't want to risk fucking up even more for something I spent a fortune on.

Wazrach

16 May 2019, 20:40

I also wouldn't mind switching to Model M keycaps for the stabilised keys, but I don't want to lose the amazing sound of the F122's spacebar. That's mainly why I'm hesitant to replace it. I like the sound of the main keys in that video, but the spacebar doesn't sound nearly as good as stock, since it's been replaced.

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fohat
Elder Messenger

16 May 2019, 21:57

Wazrach wrote:
16 May 2019, 20:00
i think i'll just sell this. can't get the stabiliser inserts back into the barrel frame and i've mangled them trying. don't want to resort to other keycaps..
For the future, I don't know whether I detailed this in my guide, but it is best to push the plastic stabilizer tabs out from behind with a small flat-head screwdriver.

To re-insert, I use a large flat-head screwdriver and put the blade into the "mouth" of the tab, then press it back into place with the shaft of the screwdriver parallel to the plate.

Wazrach

17 May 2019, 11:56

fohat wrote:
16 May 2019, 21:57
Wazrach wrote:
16 May 2019, 20:00
i think i'll just sell this. can't get the stabiliser inserts back into the barrel frame and i've mangled them trying. don't want to resort to other keycaps..
For the future, I don't know whether I detailed this in my guide, but it is best to push the plastic stabilizer tabs out from behind with a small flat-head screwdriver.

To re-insert, I use a large flat-head screwdriver and put the blade into the "mouth" of the tab, then press it back into place with the shaft of the screwdriver parallel to the plate.
Thank you Fohat, the trick worked with the spacebar stabilisers - but I haven't been successful with the smaller ones. I have some M122 keycaps which I don't mind using.

I have drilled holes through the plates ready for a bolt mod. I made a flimsy mat out of packing foam which should be okay for now. Going to try reassembly again.

Fkazim

17 May 2019, 12:55

OK so I had trouble reassembling my IBM Model F XT Keyboard and I was so close to giving up. In the end I just said to myself if I can't get it together its useless anyways so I got around 6 G clamps scattered around mostly next to each tab put a piece of wood on the side that had to stay stationary and just slapped the mallet as hard as I could and the back plate went under the tabs enough to stay together then I just kept hitting until it was back together fully.

The foam I used was 3mm neoprene foam and i had that much trouble with the XT but my AT had no issues so not really sure what to make of it.

Wazrach

17 May 2019, 14:28

Fkazim wrote:
17 May 2019, 12:55
OK so I had trouble reassembling my IBM Model F XT Keyboard and I was so close to giving up. In the end I just said to myself if I can't get it together its useless anyways so I got around 6 G clamps scattered around mostly next to each tab put a piece of wood on the side that had to stay stationary and just slapped the mallet as hard as I could and the back plate went under the tabs enough to stay together then I just kept hitting until it was back together fully.

The foam I used was 3mm neoprene foam and i had that much trouble with the XT but my AT had no issues so not really sure what to make of it.
Yeahhh... same with me actually. I used that exact same stuff on an AT a while ago and was actually able to reassemble it, but it would not work on the XT. In fact, the tabs weren't even close.

Aran.E99

17 May 2019, 14:32

I bought 2 model F XT's about 2-3 months ago. One is still in pieces scattered across my house waiting for me to restore (which will probably be never/not for a long time)... Good luck.

Fkazim

17 May 2019, 14:35

hmm glad to see im not the only one experiencing that weird situation. Maybe the tolerances on the XT are tighter then on the AT as in the AT has wider gaps or is just assembled with less tension?

I have also found that the US made IBM Model F XT Keyboards are much more loose then the UK made ones in my experience maybe its just me?

Also the locking tab on the US made XT i could bend out with my bare hands where as the UK one required mole grips to bend out. Are UK ones made with stronger steel or better heat treating or is it purely age based?

Aran.E99

17 May 2019, 19:28

I've only ever had UK F's so I can't give my opinion on that however I'd agree that mine was tight with 2mm foam and EXTREMELY tight with 3mm foam. I don't even really like the keyfeel that much hence why I sold the first one right after finishing the restoration.

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PlacaFromHell

17 May 2019, 20:12

Wazrach wrote:
17 May 2019, 11:56
Thank you Fohat, the trick worked with the spacebar stabilisers - but I haven't been successful with the smaller ones. I have some M122 keycaps which I don't mind using.
Try to put the enter stabilizer, is the only key that gave me problems with the model M keycaps.

Fkazim

17 May 2019, 20:21

What I did with the enter stabiliser was wrap a thin piece of plastic around the stabiliser as it was extremely loose to the point that I could hear it shaking and rattling everytime I hit the enter key.

Wazrach

17 May 2019, 21:07

Well, the keyboard is finally back together. I think I will practice on other keyboards before I take to restoring the case. It looks fine for now. I bolt-modded it and it feels much firmer than it did before, even with the thin packing foam. I'll probably play around with the tightness of the bolts at some point to get the best effect. They seem to have tightened the feel, but attenuated the ping (which I am looking to bring out more).

Fkazim

17 May 2019, 22:42

So did you cut the cut the metal tabs off then bolt it together or did you leave the tabs but also add bolts well either way I'm very happy for you.

Could you post a video then link it so I can hear the sound Thanks.

Wazrach

17 May 2019, 22:49

Fkazim wrote:
17 May 2019, 22:42
So did you cut the cut the metal tabs off then bolt it together or did you leave the tabs but also add bolts well either way I'm very happy for you.

Could you post a video then link it so I can hear the sound Thanks.
Will do! I will record a sound test in a bit! :D

Wazrach

17 May 2019, 22:53

Fkazim wrote:
17 May 2019, 22:42
So did you cut the cut the metal tabs off then bolt it together or did you leave the tabs but also add bolts well either way I'm very happy for you.

Could you post a video then link it so I can hear the sound Thanks.
Also, I left the tabs. I did not bend them at all, the packing foam compressed suitably. I added a few bolts as shown in Fohat's F122 guide from 6 years ago. :P

Fkazim

17 May 2019, 23:12

Thanks for confirming that could you also link me Fohats F122 restoration log.

Thanks.
Last edited by Fkazim on 21 May 2019, 01:28, edited 1 time in total.

Wazrach

18 May 2019, 00:08

So here is the keyboard before I disassembled it: https://youtu.be/Em9uJBw0JV4

Here is the keyboard after replacing the foam with thin packing foam, bolt-modding it and lubing the spacebar stabiliser: https://youtu.be/EUdB7gLdwyI

Note that the Backspace, Enter and Rshift keys do not have stabiliser inserts - they work just fine and don't sound too bad. I will replace them with Model M caps soon.

I know the sound could be better if I used a thicker foam and changed the tension more, but I've left it as it is for now. I will experiment with the bolts to get the most ping soon enough!

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fohat
Elder Messenger

18 May 2019, 00:11


Fkazim

18 May 2019, 08:42

Thanks Fohat for linking your guide :)

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