Reasonable price for full Bolt/screw modding model m's

Fkazim

20 Mar 2020, 17:02

Hello everybody just wanted to get some opinions how much is a fair/reasonable price to charge for bolt/screw modding and cleaning IBM Model M keyboards. Any feedback would be much appreciated. some Model M pics just for fun.

Thanks.
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IMG_20190315_033415.jpg (115.84 KiB) Viewed 297 times
IMG_20190305_044558.jpg
IMG_20190305_044558.jpg (346.32 KiB) Viewed 297 times

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Redmaus
Gotta start somewhere

20 Mar 2020, 17:04

I'd say about $50. Bolt modding is time consuming and takes patience and skill.

Although I would never bolt mod anymore, screw mod is so much faster with the same if not better result.

Fkazim

20 Mar 2020, 17:08

ok thanks for the response. sound like about what i was thinking.

Fkazim

20 Mar 2020, 17:33

If there was also cleaning of the keyboard included as well as screw mod how much would be fair to charge in that case?

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Redmaus
Gotta start somewhere

20 Mar 2020, 17:58

Fkazim wrote:
20 Mar 2020, 17:33
If there was also cleaning of the keyboard included as well as screw mod how much would be fair to charge in that case?
I we are talking about a in depth ultrasonic cleaning, yes. If you mean you wiped it down and did a semi thorough clean with a rag then no. I'd say add 15 or 20 dollars depending on how dirty the board was to begin with.

Fkazim

20 Mar 2020, 18:00

The sort of cleaning I'm talking is an in depth cleaning all keycaps off in soapy water. Plus case and barrel plate cleaned with soapy water too. Considering this what sort of price would you recommend?

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Redmaus
Gotta start somewhere

20 Mar 2020, 18:19

With that in mind I'd say $20 for cleaning. Someone do chime in if they have a better number.

zippolupan

20 Mar 2020, 19:39

I spend about 3-4 hours cleaning each keyboard. Some of the keyboards I get are really nasty but turn out great. It's all about how much you'd pay yourself per hour. I normally consider something slightly above the national minimum hourly wage since it's my hobby and I don't depend on it (maybe only for funding my own keyboards). For screw-modding I'd consider how much the specialised skill adds to your labour as well.

In the end it's all about how much you think it's fair for yourself and how much you enjoy doing this work. If you don't quite fancy bolt modding and only a larger amount would entice you to bother doing it, then don't do it for less.

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fohat
Elder Messenger

20 Mar 2020, 20:20

Years ago, I did a few in the $50-$60 range (+ shipping both ways, of course) but regretted it. I also never kept track of hours, so I don't know what the rate equated to.

Note that I am an "all the way" kind of guy so I always take the thing completely apart, so that I can thoroughly clean every part - all the membranes, plate, wash the barrel plate in soap and water, etc. I also do the nut and bolt mod (actually they are machine screws, but "bolt mod" became the accepted term) so that you can "tune" the tension exactly how you want it.

It is a tedious and fussy process, and often takes more than one go to get all the pieces aligned properly during re-assembly, so that is probably 10-20 minutes per iteration. It is also easy to spend $5-$10 on materials, so it all adds up. I am happy to do it for a personal keyboard, because I too like manual hobbies, but to do it for hire is a thankless task.

Some of my sour grapes came about because I had also some bought Ms in poor condition and refurbished them to perfection, only to have virtually every buyer complain that they were "damaged goods" and would have fetched a higher price in unaltered original condition.

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