F62+F77 orders now open! New Kishsaver+Industrial Model F Keyboards

xji

12 Sep 2022, 19:49

Arkku wrote:
12 Sep 2022, 19:23
xji wrote:
12 Sep 2022, 18:11
I'm at the last step of assembling the keyboard (F62 model with HHKB layout), where all that's left is the bottom row of keys. However, apparently the lower end of the keys would overlap the stabilizer wire of the spacebar? Here's a photo:
In the first photo it looks like the stabilizer wire has moved on top of the hooks, whereas in the second photo it is correctly installed. It should be in both hooks, then the keys will sit above it but bottom out before they hit the wire.

(To answer the question: yes, reinstall the spacebar to be like the second photo.)
That was it! Thanks. Now I'm typing on the keyboard already :)

ivor_h

13 Sep 2022, 11:16

Yup, software developer here too - typing on all sorts of keys for the past... ~43 years - since I switched to using a trackball and sorted out the right keyboard rests I've had no hand/wrist issues.
taraskremen wrote:
10 Sep 2022, 20:59
The gel rest in the pictures looks interesting. It is rather difficult to find one tall enough for this board, but it's good to know that they are out there. From the images, it looks like your F77 if flat on your desk. Is this the case? In any event, thanks for sharing!
Yeah annoying that this one's no longer made, someone must do something similar, I find it's perfect for me and the F77.
I have the large bumpers at the rear sloping the keys forwards, this way the rest sits just proud of the metal case. (I have them stuck on with double sided tape, as you can see I was experimenting with different heights until I was happy :D )
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The gel in these is very soft so it deforms and moves much more than most gel rests - it's like a "gel/air" mix inside a tube:
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Jesse9766

13 Sep 2022, 20:14

I just received my keyboard a week ago, and have troubles with the ANSI-US left shift registering when pressing the right side of it. The spring buckles, but the key isn't actually activated. The key works normally when pressing the left side. I've tried taking the keycap out and putting it back in, but the issue still occurs. Has anyone experienced a similar issue, and how should I fix this?

Ellipse

13 Sep 2022, 21:13

Jesse9766 please review the manual - initial setup and troubleshooting sections as well as the quality control secrets video embedded in the manual. The issue is likely a spring issue.

xji

14 Sep 2022, 08:28

Heisenberg122 wrote:
08 Jul 2022, 00:33
Ellipse wrote:
06 Jul 2022, 06:06

Heisenberg122 as noted in the manual that specific issue is probably fixed by tightening the 2 controller ground screws and perhaps adjusting or replacing the spring of the space bar.
Ellipse, thanks for the answer.

I did the following tunings without testing them one by one. So I don't know which one corrected the lag problem but now it seems that the problem disappeared. I can type on the keyboard without timing mistakes;

First, I removed the spacebar and loosened the metal tabs a bit as advised in the manual. Now it a way rattles.
SpaceBarLag.png

Second, I removed the spring and replaced it with a new one from the first aid kit. And I tried my best to put it inside the barrel exactly as described in the videos.

Third, I replaced the complete space bar set with the stabilizer metal wire from the second spare key set


Now, the spacebar registers perfectly without any lag. So, I don't know which one of the tuning steps above worked, but it's O.K. now except for the rattling of the spacebar :) which doesn't matter to me.
I also have the same issue with the space bar lagging, especially on the right half of it (around the 60% - 80% range counting from left to right), which is customarily the part I use while typing. Curiously, without the stabilizer wire, I can indeed press down on the right half (albeit the lag still somewhat persists), while it's almost impossible to press down on the left half.

Also, if I keep pressing down on the space bar around that 60% - 80% area, the keyboard fails to register continuous <space> inputs, while pressing down on any other area (even more to the right) seems to work fine.

I tried to adjust the metal tabs to little effect.

Does the description above point to a clear issue? I imagined it might be something obvious if only a certain segment of the space key behaves differently. Maybe I should tinker with the metal tab to the right a bit more?...

I also saw this paragraph from the manual that a common solution to a lagging space bar would be to "loosen the clips a touch with a screwdriver". Could somebody point to me what the "clips" here refer to? Since it's not saying the "tabs", I supposed it's something different, but at a glance I couldn't find anything I could touch with a screwdriver... Or does it indeed refer to loosening the tabs a bit more? (Somebody also mentioned "controller ground screws" above.)

I would appreciate your help here. Thanks!

xji

14 Sep 2022, 08:37

Another issue I have encountered is that the keyboard actually wobbles a bit diagonally on the desk while I type. I wonder if this could be addressed by redoing/tightening some of the screws on the bottom, since I'd imagine the bottom of the keyboard itself must be flat.

Arkku

14 Sep 2022, 12:15

xji wrote:
14 Sep 2022, 08:37
Another issue I have encountered is that the keyboard actually wobbles a bit diagonally on the desk while I type. I wonder if this could be addressed by redoing/tightening some of the screws on the bottom, since I'd imagine the bottom of the keyboard itself must be flat.
Did you install the feet? The bottom of the keyboard is not supposed to directly touch the desk.

Ellipse

14 Sep 2022, 17:53

xji as noted in the post you quoted, adjusting the spring is a top recommendation for inconsistent key registration, but also please do follow the manual on the project web site which has a section specific to troubleshooting, and specifically to adjusting the space bar. The clips and tabs are the same thing - two of these hold the space bar stabilizer wire in place underneath the keys.

taraskremen

14 Sep 2022, 18:39

taraskremen wrote:
12 Sep 2022, 19:02
One issue I ran into is that the play in the space bar allows it to rotate enough that it interferes with the "./>" key on the right. On the left, there is a cylinder inside the space bar that keeps it more or less aligned with an otherwise unused barrel, but there is no cylinder on the right, allowing the extra play. I solved this by carefully shaving down the interfering edges of the "./>" key and space bar in that area with fine grade sandpaper, but I suppose putting something in the right tab to prevent the stabilizer wire from moving so far forward could be another viable solution.
Ellipse, what would you recommend for this issue?

Ellipse

14 Sep 2022, 18:51

taraskremen please check the section in the manual specific to space bar adjustment. It is a matter of adjusting the shape of the space bar stabilizer wire, and maybe putting some scrap foam or other material between the space bar stabilizer wire and the back of the metal tab so that the stabilizer is moved upwards a bit.

the_reifier

15 Sep 2022, 07:34

The horror stories had me worried about flashing the firmware. Maybe because I'm a software developer, and I've written firmware and flashed it to hardware as part of lab testing, the process was straightforward.

Key installation went mostly smoothly. The internal assembly had shifted during shipping, preventing me from installing the rightmost keycap columns, so I had to open the case and scoot the assembly slightly. I had to jam the Lshift stabilizer in pretty good to get it to reg properly, and I had to reseat a few keycaps. Didn't need to adjust any springs or unstick any flippers.

So now it's in service connected to my work laptop. F77 HHKB split backspace/Rshift layout with Mac Command+Opt keys and numpad 3. Looking good, sounding good, and working well. Thanks, Ellipse.

xji

15 Sep 2022, 08:13

Arkku wrote:
14 Sep 2022, 12:15
xji wrote:
14 Sep 2022, 08:37
Another issue I have encountered is that the keyboard actually wobbles a bit diagonally on the desk while I type. I wonder if this could be addressed by redoing/tightening some of the screws on the bottom, since I'd imagine the bottom of the keyboard itself must be flat.
Did you install the feet? The bottom of the keyboard is not supposed to directly touch the desk.
Ah, of course I totally overlooked this. I see now on the store page for bumpers that the square rubber bumpers are included by default with the ultra compact layout. Thanks for pointing this out!

taraskremen

15 Sep 2022, 18:18

Ellipse wrote:
14 Sep 2022, 18:51
taraskremen please check the section in the manual specific to space bar adjustment. It is a matter of adjusting the shape of the space bar stabilizer wire, and maybe putting some scrap foam or other material between the space bar stabilizer wire and the back of the metal tab so that the stabilizer is moved upwards a bit.
Thanks! Putting a rectangular piece card stock vertically between the inner face of the tab and the wire did the trick. I may later replace it with something more durable and "frictionless."

the_reifier

15 Sep 2022, 23:07

Jesse9766 wrote:
13 Sep 2022, 20:14
I just received my keyboard a week ago, and have troubles with the ANSI-US left shift registering when pressing the right side of it. The spring buckles, but the key isn't actually activated. The key works normally when pressing the left side. I've tried taking the keycap out and putting it back in, but the issue still occurs. Has anyone experienced a similar issue, and how should I fix this?
Turns out mine had the same issue. Noticed after some use. Whittled a chopstick to a narrower point and used that to reseat the spring a few times. I eventually decided it was a bad spring, so I installed one of my spares, and the new spring buckles properly.

Note that the docs Ellipse mentioned are very particular about spring orientation, as well as some other things you can try before resorting to reseating the spring.

Ellipse

16 Sep 2022, 01:15

As an update, the organizer of the Sep. 29th NYC presentation noted that the presentation should target about 35-45 minutes, it will be livestreamed on Google hangouts for Google employees only, and a recording will be attempted for later viewing.

Jesse9766

16 Sep 2022, 01:32

the_reifier wrote:
15 Sep 2022, 23:07
Jesse9766 wrote:
13 Sep 2022, 20:14
I just received my keyboard a week ago, and have troubles with the ANSI-US left shift registering when pressing the right side of it. The spring buckles, but the key isn't actually activated. The key works normally when pressing the left side. I've tried taking the keycap out and putting it back in, but the issue still occurs. Has anyone experienced a similar issue, and how should I fix this?
Turns out mine had the same issue. Noticed after some use. Whittled a chopstick to a narrower point and used that to reseat the spring a few times. I eventually decided it was a bad spring, so I installed one of my spares, and the new spring buckles properly.

Note that the docs Ellipse mentioned are very particular about spring orientation, as well as some other things you can try before resorting to reseating the spring.
This advice was pretty helpful - at first I used tweezers to reseat the spring and that didn't seem to fix anything. I replaced the spring with a spare and it works better now. Still an issue with registering pressing the very right edge, so I suppose I'll need to play around a little bit more, but at least it's usable now. The left shift key has a little more resistance than the rest of the keys, perhaps I should adjust the insert a little bit.

Ellipse

16 Sep 2022, 18:16

Venue request - reposting: We are under two weeks away! Is anyone able to host a keyboard meetup on 9/29 in the afternoon in Manhattan? I have been invited to speak that day about the Model F project at a private event and was hoping to be able to show off the new Model F and beam spring keyboards publicly that day.

Serhei

16 Sep 2022, 18:23

Received my F77 after a bit of wrangling with Canada Post
('it's heavy' commented the person who finally handed me the package).
Initial impressions to provide a data point:
  • Keyboard sound slightly different than I expected, not in a bad way. The plastic 'clack' component of the sound carries further than I expected, the metallic 'ping' does not. So the sound in the adjacent room is similar to a very enthusiastic kid opening giant bags of Lego bricks and pouring them onto the floor. If someone complains about the racket, I might have to switch to my HHKB outside daylight hours :}
  • Initial installation went very smoothly, just 2-3 keys needed a second attempt to install. Looks like it pays to read the instructions and hold the kb spacebar side up :) that said, because I was figuring out the layout as I went along, I didn't follow the directive "don't let the keyboard rest horizontally until each key has been fully pressed in" as I kept lowering it to go through my collection of keys.
The couple of issues that came up were easy to fix:
  • Keyboard wobble after attaching the cork feet. I thought the keyboard could be leveled by adjusting the bottom screws, but apparently not. In the end, I stuck layers of electrical tape under one of the feet to even it out.
  • Right Shift key was unreliable. Tried reseating the keycap several times, finally gave up and just replaced the spring to fix it.
  • Kept seeing transposed / out of order / out of sequence characters e.g. 'build/buidl', 'help/hepl'. At first I thought this might be that 'loose controller screws' issue described in the manual -- but opening up the case I found the controller was tightly screwed in. Loosening and re-tightening the screws didn't fix it. Then I realized that all transpositions involved the 'L' key. Pulling out and carefully reseating the keycap fixed it -- the transpositions decreased in frequency and then stopped entirely after a bit of typing to break the key in.
Once I understand how to work with the firmware, my eventual plan is to replace the entire number pad with clear/relegendable caps and go wild with custom macros.

Very grateful to Ellipse for the chance to use such a unique, solid and traditional piece of hardware!

-- Serhei Makarov

the_reifier

16 Sep 2022, 22:30

Jesse9766 wrote:
16 Sep 2022, 01:32
This advice was pretty helpful - at first I used tweezers to reseat the spring and that didn't seem to fix anything. I replaced the spring with a spare and it works better now. Still an issue with registering pressing the very right edge, so I suppose I'll need to play around a little bit more, but at least it's usable now. The left shift key has a little more resistance than the rest of the keys, perhaps I should adjust the insert a little bit.
Glad that helped. Did you orient the replacement spring such that it is at the noon-1 position? This seems to matter.

Coincidence that the same spring was bad on both of our boards :D I bet the 2U+ size (requires stabilizer) reveals any flaws in the springs. If this is true, then the enter and Rshift springs may need adjustment or replacement on some keyboards.

Ellipse

18 Sep 2022, 00:12

Posting, with permission, another nice and unique setup, this time of the F62 classic style keyboard in Industrial Gray, with a customized split right shift layout.
f62 - Copy.jpg
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repo_code

18 Sep 2022, 17:03

What's the easiest way to replace two 1U keys with a horizontal 2U key? I'm thinking of installing the 2U "0 Insert" key on the lower-left of the right-hand block of the F77. The question would also apply to converting split backspace to 2U backspace.

IIUC it's feasible, you could load custom firmware that removes the mapping for the soon-to-be-unused barrel. After verifying that works, open the barrel assembly, remove the extra flipper and spring, reassemble, and add the white horizontal stabilizer. It'd be as if the keyboard had been built to this spec at the factory.

But is there an easier way? Could it work to remove the spring, allow the flipper to lie flat, install the stabilizer over the top, and then run with the stock firmware? The stock firmware seems to just ignore keys with missing keycaps whose flippers lie flat. So maybe it's only a quesion of whether the stabilizer would interfere with the flipper.

IIUC it's not a good idea to remove the flipper and run with the stock firmware that still maps the empty barrel to a key, because it could screw up the controller's calibration. At least I think that's what pandrew said: viewtopic.php?p=504447#p504447
(And if that's the case, it also doesn't seem great to calibrate with a flipper that lies flat.)

My guess is that there's no shortcut here-- the stabilizer looks pretty tall, it looks like it will interfere with the flipper.

Forgive me if this was asked and answered already, I couldn't find it.

Arkku

19 Sep 2022, 09:58

repo_code wrote:
18 Sep 2022, 17:03
But is there an easier way? Could it work to remove the spring, allow the flipper to lie flat, install the stabilizer over the top, and then run with the stock firmware? The stock firmware seems to just ignore keys with missing keycaps whose flippers lie flat. So maybe it's only a quesion of whether the stabilizer would interfere with the flipper.

IIUC it's not a good idea to remove the flipper and run with the stock firmware that still maps the empty barrel to a key, because it could screw up the controller's calibration.
(edit: The following is assuming that leaving the flipper under the stabilizer permanently presses it down; to be honest I have no idea if that will actually happen or whether the stabilizer will even fit on top of the flipper.)

The calibration is done with the assumption that all keys in their unpressed state. In pandrew's firmware, this means that the key will be assigned a threshold such that it will probably never read as pressed, i.e., it probably works like you'd want it to. However, it wastes calibration bins because there will be fewer available for the actually unpressed keys and they will be spaced too far from each other to cover the apparently large range of values. This may cause other keys to work incorrectly (but, in my experience, that is unlikely with these new model F keyboards).

(In my firmware, the outlier key with a vastly different threshold will likely be ignored and the unpopulated position will start to read as being pressed. But of course that is not the stock firmware, so if you updated it, you might as well have unmapped the key while at it.)

Meanwhile, with either firmware it is harmless to have a flipper in an unmapped key position, so if the stabilizer physically works with a flipper underneath, that's fine. But you must unmap the unused position and update the firmware. However, updating the firmware is easy: press the key combination to reset the keyboard (IIRC Fn + Space + R) and then use a tool like QMK toolbox to upload the new firmware. I have "updated" the firmware hundreds of times while developing it, including to broken versions. It is very hard to brick your keyboard, worst case is you have to open the case to fix it in case the firmware won't let you reset it, and that shouldn't happen if you use a firmware from the web configurator.
Last edited by Arkku on 19 Sep 2022, 19:42, edited 1 time in total.

Ellipse

19 Sep 2022, 17:42

Another nice F77 classic case setup, sharing with permission. I had to share it as it features my favorite pen. I've been using Pilot Precise V5's for over 20 years.

repo_code I don't think it's possible to unsplit a key without opening up the inner assembly and removing the flipper. After uninstalling the keys it only takes a couple minutes - check out the video in the manual on the project web site.

Thanks for the feedback Serhei.
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repo_code

20 Sep 2022, 16:52

Indeed, it's not possible to install a horizontal stabilizer over a flipper with the spring removed. They interfere. You can see this flipper is lifted out by a stabilizer that's not yet fully inserted:
interference.jpg
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As another poster reported, this F77 also came with a white stabilizer that should actually be black, it's molded in the same asymmetrical shape as the black vertical stabilizers. Mistake at the factory?
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Luckily there were enough normal white symmetrical horizontal stabilizers to accomplish this mod. Looks great don't it? 8-)
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taraskremen

21 Sep 2022, 01:07

Going back to my earlier post about the o-ring mod, I wanted to show what the difference looks like between a key with the blue o-ring installed and one without an o-ring. In the photo below, the key on the left has the o-ring, and the one on the right does not. I cannot overstate the effect on typing comfort. It is really night and day. I can finally use the F62 as a more-or-less daily driver, whereas before the mod I had to stop using it after a few hours due to tendon pain. The several days it took to re-adjust the springs were worth it, IMO.
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Another thing I wanted to mention is that I found that these risers work pretty well with the F62 (and probably with the F77). I followed the directions and left them alone for at least 12 hours before using the board, and they are staying put so far with just their adhesive pads. In addition to slightly elevating the back in the folded state, they give you a choice between two positions, which is handy.
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Ellipse

21 Sep 2022, 02:42

This is teriffic taraskremen - those feet were a good find - I'm sure others will consider them now that you've shown photos of them working on a new Model F.

riverstyx

21 Sep 2022, 21:57

Ellipse wrote:
10 Sep 2022, 18:08
riverstyx did you follow the instructions in the firmware section regarding installing the drivers? You have to scroll down a bit in that section. Usually this affects those flashing firmware for the first time on a particular computer. That may fix your issue - please keep us posted!
Ellipse! You sussed it! Thank you so much! I needed to scroll down, past the video, to see the more comprehensive instructions. I don't think I'd ever have gotten it sorted out. Bless you!

(I apologize for the tardiness of my reply; I was traveling a bit and was unable to put your brilliant advice into action.)

Ellipse

23 Sep 2022, 00:11

NYC or Anaheim area meetup signup form

I expect to be in the Anaheim area on Sunday October 2 and should be free in the afternoon if anyone is interested in a meetup. I'll bring a new Model F F77 keyboard and maybe a few beam spring modules as well for folks to try out. If anyone can offer a venue it would be much appreciated!

Also for those in NYC I am trying to put together a meetup in the late afternoon on Thursday September 29th if anyone has suggestions on a meetup space or can recommend one. Maybe Union Square Park? The parks seem to allow gatherings of 20-25 or fewer people without issue.

Please fill out this form if you hope to attend either event!

https://forms.gle/8ifJw4kCT7pVw3WM9

clickclack

23 Sep 2022, 23:08

IMG_20220923_220407724~2.jpg
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How about the ESC flip. It's feet ... on a stick.

jamesborr

24 Sep 2022, 06:48

Folks,

Am the happy recipient of a new F77 (HHKB layout). Have it fairly well wired in (had to reset some of the keycaps, but have gotten everything properly registering), and to be honest, couldn't be more pleased with its feel (brings back memories of using an original Model F on an IBM PC in the 80's). Just have one wrinkle which I am trying to resolve and am hoping someone on this list might have some useful insight.

As I am running the keyboard on mostly Mac's, I was hoping to leverage a couple of keys for media functions (Mute, Volume +/-), and so purchased a set of media keys and configured them in VIA -- and they work perfectly when I connect the keyboard to a computer directly or via a USB hub -- yea!. Now for the wrinkle -- these same media keys do not function when I connect the keyboard to the keyboard control port on my KVM (ioGear GCS1794). I am aware of the potential idiosyncrasies associated with "special" keys and KVM's, however, I have 2 other keyboards (Wired Apple and a Unicomp for Mac) for which the media keys do get passed and function properly through the keyboard control port on the KVM.

I also have the media keys mapped to 'a', 's' and 'd' on another layer. These keys also don't function through the keyboard control port but do when not going through this port. If the media keys did not work on my other keyboards, then I would be confident that the KVM was not passing them forward to the connected computer -- but as the other keyboards are not exhibiting this issue, it feels like there must be some other failure condition in play -- perhaps something timing related (maybe related to the length of the USB cable)? Something else?

Regardless, I thought I would offer my experience up to the list to see if anyone else might have experienced this issue with the F77 and came up with a solution -- or if not, if others might have other useful insight to share. Thanks.

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