Let's create the FSSK/FEXT = DONE !!!!

User avatar
Hypersphere

05 Mar 2016, 19:48

This is probably completely crazy, but what about using the SDL connector that is already present in the SSK and making direct SDL to USB cables? I rather like my SDL to USB cable with the built-in active converter. Of course, after installing the new PCB/controller in the FSSK there would be no need for an active converter. The SDL-->USB cable would have to be passive. This would maintain the stock connector of the SSK. OTOH, this would require a special cable, and I suppose most people would prefer to go with a current standard cable, such as mini-USB, and change the connector on the FSSK to match.

User avatar
Techno Trousers
100,000,000 actuations

05 Mar 2016, 19:49

micrex22 wrote: Using miniaturized connectors on keyboards means they're a lot more fragile and less durable. As such, mini USB is probably the best option (especially since the cables are far more common than micro USB ones).
You have the mini-micro durability and availability backward. Just about all phones and tablets from the past few years use micro. But again, Type-C is the current state of the USB art: durable, unidirectional, and flexible. It doesn't seem that folks want to use it here, for whatever reason, but let's make sure the ultimate decision is based on the facts, at least.

idollar
i$

05 Mar 2016, 19:52

Hypersphere wrote: @idollar: .... and you have made this possible!
WE ALL HAVE :D : the enormous and fantastic work of xwhatsit, the XTANT and help from wcass, all the comments and ideas in DT, the support from the "prototypers" ... all of this made my original idea possible.

This and all the hours that I have spent designing the PCB :lol:

User avatar
vivalarevolución
formerly prdlm2009

08 Mar 2016, 04:11

Techno Trousers wrote:
micrex22 wrote: Using miniaturized connectors on keyboards means they're a lot more fragile and less durable. As such, mini USB is probably the best option (especially since the cables are far more common than micro USB ones).
You have the mini-micro durability and availability backward. Just about all phones and tablets from the past few years use micro. But again, Type-C is the current state of the USB art: durable, unidirectional, and flexible. It doesn't seem that folks want to use it here, for whatever reason, but let's make sure the ultimate decision is based on the facts, at least.
I switch my support to Type-C. Because the future!

berserkfan

08 Mar 2016, 09:55

I look at this thread on and off, not because I use this layout but because I am hoping for the day when Wcass designs a split layout Model F. I would buy six PCBs and six casings for that, just to help them meet MOQ!

That said it seems the conversation has derailed into zooming in on connectors. Surely we should be more concerned about sourcing plates and casings? These add immensely to the costs. As some people on gh know by now, I am a fan of the Tipro/ modular casing. If there are many shared parts, casings and plates may become much cheaper and easier to handle.

EG instead of having to get one huge curved plate which seems so hard to do correctly, could we get smaller flat platelets for each section of the keyboard? Since each platelet is smaller we can curve the PCB just by mounting each platelet at a different angle or distance from the casing.

I am a reluctant veteran of Model F-122 disassembly. Big heavy plates? NEVER again.

User avatar
Halvar

08 Mar 2016, 10:01

Sourcing plates and casings? Tipro? Plate hard to do correctly? Are you in the right thread?

berserkfan

08 Mar 2016, 13:31

Halvar wrote: Sourcing plates and casings? Tipro? Plate hard to do correctly? Are you in the right thread?

Guess I am talking about too many things at the same time.

I don't buy the idea of using plastic barrel plate for the FSSK. Metal top plate, metal bottom plate, that's how to get the crisp and lovely actuation.

I had a substantive discussion with Ron on GH about inspirations from the Tipro. A modular design makes it easier to adapt to different layouts - eg Kishaver/Gh60, 87, 104, 122, GH144. Obviously it would be useful when adapting that concept to Model F.

And IIRC they were having difficulty with getting a curved metal plate done last year for xtant because you need to find a shop that can roll it to the right curvature. Even if you can get that done for the FSSK it doesn't mean that curvature is appropriate for another layout. Since I will never use FSSK I really am looking out for myself, an Ortholinear Split Layout Model F. [I never tire of trying to put these ideas into people's heads because it's the best way to inspire more modders to design and build these things. Being not technically skilled I can only wait till someone designs and is looking for others to join his group buy.]

User avatar
Techno Trousers
100,000,000 actuations

08 Mar 2016, 15:19

berserkfan wrote:.
I don't buy the idea of using plastic barrel plate for the FSSK. Metal top plate, metal bottom plate, that's how to get the crisp and lovely actuation.
If you want to work on creating a new, from scratch, capacitive buckling spring keyboard, then you should definitely start up a new thread for that. I'd hope there would be some interest since the Model F is having a mini renaissance now.

User avatar
Compgeke

08 Mar 2016, 17:24


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Techno Trousers
100,000,000 actuations

08 Mar 2016, 21:30

The Ellipse project is a copy of an existing Model F. It sounds like berserkfan wants to create a wholly original model from scratch. In any case, discussion of that belongs in its own thread.

User avatar
fohat
Elder Messenger

09 Mar 2016, 00:52

berserkfan wrote:
I am a reluctant veteran of Model F-122 disassembly. Big heavy plates? NEVER again.
Nothing is easy the first time. I have done at least a dozen, and only 2 failed.

1 was totally my fault, I drilled through a trace. The other was probably dead before I got it and I didn't test it before dismantling it.

Otherwise, allocate a dozen or more hours and a hundred curse words and it is not that big of a deal.

idollar
i$

16 Mar 2016, 17:32

Is there anyone else interested in the FSSK ?
As I said before I am thinking of ordering on the 21st.

Edit: Corrected, I wanted to write FSSK, sorry
I will test a full FSSK with the two additional keys mentioned by XMIT at my risk with this order.
Last edited by idollar on 16 Mar 2016, 18:18, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Halvar

16 Mar 2016, 18:07

I'm interested in a FEXT PCB.

I might even decide to build the FEXT first (if it ever happens), and the FSSK later. I have never done a screw (or bolt) mod before, and I'm a bit worried to ruin a perfectly nice SSK if something goes wrong.

So if you're looking for a prototype tester, I'm all ready... :-)

idollar
i$

16 Mar 2016, 18:22

Halvar wrote: I'm interested in a FEXT PCB.

I might even decide to build the FEXT first (if it ever happens), and the FSSK later. I have never done a screw (or bolt) mod before, and I'm a bit worried to ruin a perfectly nice SSK if something goes wrong.

So if you're looking for a prototype tester, I'm all ready... :-)
Hello, Halvar,

1) I made a mistake, I wanted to write FSSK. Read my correction above.
2) I planned to order a prototype version of the FEXT also, with the extra keys that XMIT wants. All risk will go in this new board design. I have planned to do this at my risk, but if you are interested, I can order one for you also.
3) I will help you will the screw mod. No problem. We just have to find the way to meet. I can saw you my work and you decide if it will be FEXT or FSSK, no problem. :-)

User avatar
Halvar

16 Mar 2016, 19:17

Ah, I thought you were interest checking for the FEXT in preparation for your prototype order.

Would you have ordered just one single PCB of your FEXT prototype? Do they even offer to order just one? If the price for two is (almost) double the price for one, then it doesn't make much sense to order two I guess. In that case I better wait for the "corrected version". If ordering two prototypes brings down the price per PCB for you, then I'm fine with a prototype one.

Thank for your generous offer to help me!

So it isn't forgotten: Everyone please order your FSSK PCB now, while there's the opportunity! Don't be sorry later.

User avatar
XMIT
[ XMIT ]

16 Mar 2016, 19:25

My FSSK PCB arrived earlier this week. Thank you so much idollar! At this point I've only had a chance to take it out of the excellent packaging, not much more. I don't think I've been this excited about a keyboard project in years.

idollar: Please count me in for an FEXT PCB as well. We can work out the details over PM. Also - any ideas when you'll be able to share the CAD files for the FSSK again?

The next few weeks look extremely busy for me. I'll get to the FSSK assembly as soon as I can, likely in bits and pieces!

idollar
i$

16 Mar 2016, 20:56

XMIT wrote: My FSSK PCB arrived earlier this week. Thank you so much idollar! At this point I've only had a chance to take it out of the excellent packaging, not much more. I don't think I've been this excited about a keyboard project in years.
Nice to read that the recipients appreciate the effort in the packing. It took me some time to think and implement how to pack a curved PCB going to the other side of the Atlantic, and to control the shipping cost at the same time.

For the future recipients: I will NOT curve your PCBs. I only did it with the prototypes as they needed some traces to be patched
idollar: Please count me in for an FEXT PCB as well. We can work out the details over PM. Also - any ideas when you'll be able to share the CAD files for the FSSK again?
Let me test the FEXT first. We will talk after I confirm that it works :-)
I will share them as soon as I read, check, re-check, read, print, re-check ..... them. :-)
The next few weeks look extremely busy for me. I'll get to the FSSK assembly as soon as I can, likely in bits and pieces!
Please, post some pictures of the process. I am interested in seeing how people does it.

User avatar
vivalarevolución
formerly prdlm2009

17 Mar 2016, 02:04

What is the amount of orders so far? Just wondering.

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phosphorglow

17 Mar 2016, 04:13

Hubba hubba hubaaaa. Daddy like.

This is fantastic. Kudos.

And farther along than my NKRO replacement membrane project I keep kicking around. Wish I had seen this a few months back, I could have helped with the initial layout of the original matrix.

I can, however, help with the issue of the USB port. I'm just about done revising Colossus V2.0, which has the option between USB-B, Micro, and Mini. Yes, I know, USB-B is deprecated. And it's been as such for a long while. But, as far as something that makes a nod to the original SDL connector, it's pretty cool. And sturdy.

I saw a post a few pages back about me using nylon risers to slip over the posts in the case. I stopped doing that quite a while ago after I came up with a more elegant solution. On SSKs the extra height touches the top of the case, and on full sized boards the bit of plastic that normally presses down on the SDL connector presses down on a folded section of the plastic port cover. Basically the same story for Micro and Mini. Those are on a single daughterboard for the extra height required. Pads for either connector on both sides. Choices are fun.

Image

Image

Image

And my Micro port cover/holder:
2016-03-16 22.22.59.jpg
2016-03-16 22.22.59.jpg (20.2 KiB) Viewed 1325 times

User avatar
wcass

17 Mar 2016, 04:29

phosphorglow wrote: I can, however, help with the issue of the USB port. I'm just about done revising Colossus V2.0, which has the option between USB-B, Micro, and Mini. Yes, I know, USB-B is deprecated. And it's been as such for a long while. But, as far as something that makes a nod to the original SDL connector, it's pretty cool. And sturdy.

I saw a post a few pages back about me using nylon risers to slip over the posts in the case. I stopped doing that quite a while ago after I came up with a more elegant solution. On SSKs the extra height touches the top of the case, and on full sized boards the bit of plastic that normally presses down on the SDL connector presses down on a folded section of the plastic port cover. Basically the same story for Micro and Mini. Those are on a single daughterboard for the extra height required. Pads for either connector on both sides. Choices are fun.
That sounds a lot like how i was planning on doing it! Did you release the design? May i borrow (and credit of course)? Link?

User avatar
phosphorglow

17 Mar 2016, 04:42

Awesome! I've spent a lot of time playing with the silly thing getting it just right and I'm rather happy with how it fits and works. You are more than welcome to use the design. Give me a few days and I'll get you something to work with. Dimensions for the new style port covers will be different than what I currently have so that's going to take a little longer. But when the time comes I can make them as needed, so I guess that's a non-issue at the moment. I'll get back with you soon on the actual PCBs.

(Adobe Illustrator cool? PDF?)

User avatar
wcass

17 Mar 2016, 05:09

Thanks. I would need to convert to gerber or DXF to directly import.
I can also open KiCAD or DipTrace data files.

User avatar
phosphorglow

17 Mar 2016, 05:31

Alrighty, gerber it shall be.

I'm guessing you intend on utilizing this as the main PCB for the controller as well? A variation of xwhatsits controller placed on a form fitting SSK application/ribbon wires between the capacitive PCB and the controller?

User avatar
phosphorglow

17 Mar 2016, 06:23

Additional relevant update:

I'm working on an official comprehensive bolt mod how-to guide. In order for me to do that properly I needed to make up plans for a work jig like the one I've been using.

Though I consider it a necessity in properly putting an M back together, it will be especially useful for this project because of the force that will be required to bend the new capacitive PCB during reassembly.
2016-03-16 21.52.07.jpg
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2016-03-16 21.48.33.jpg
2016-03-16 21.48.33.jpg (59.6 KiB) Viewed 1320 times
Once built, they're quite strong...
Clearly nowhere near this much force will required to bend the new PCB - I'm just showing off for the camera. :P
2016-03-16 21.46.25.jpg
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Last edited by phosphorglow on 17 Mar 2016, 06:28, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Redmaus
Gotta start somewhere

17 Mar 2016, 06:26

Phosphorglow have you ever done a bolt mod on a model M122? It is such a huge PITA

User avatar
phosphorglow

17 Mar 2016, 06:29

Yup, quite a few times now. I rather enjoy working on those.

idollar
i$

17 Mar 2016, 07:31

vivalarevolución wrote: What is the amount of orders so far? Just wondering.
FSSK - You are 13 + 1 (still pending payment) + my personal order
FEXT - I will order at least 2 to test one and allow me to destroy another in the process. I may order some more also ;)

idollar
i$

17 Mar 2016, 07:42

phosphorglow wrote: Additional relevant update:

I'm working on an official comprehensive bolt mod how-to guide. In order for me to do that properly I needed to make up plans for a work jig like the one I've been using.
Yes, yes !!! Go for it.
I have been contacted by many people worried about this. In my opinion it is a VERY simple thing to do if one has enough information.

A good starting point is this post: workshop-f7/ibm-model-m-screw-nut-and-b ... crew%20mod
Though I consider it a necessity in properly putting an M back together, it will be especially useful for this project because of the force that will be required to bend the new capacitive PCB during reassembly.
Actually, the process is not very different from a normal screw mod. :D
A flat PCB would not work with a curved keyboard. This was my first and biggest fear when the PCBs arrived. The solution that I applied that has worked like a dream was to bend (curve) the PCBs before installation.
This is simply done by applying heat (the hairdryer that we have was sufficient), covering the PCB with some paper to avoid the tape to get in the PCB, bend it a little bit more than what is actually required, apply packing tape in this position to keep the shape, and let it cold down. The result is a nice curved PCB that fits the sandwich.

The FSSK prototypers have seen the result. The FSSK prototypes had two mistakes that I managed to manually correct. The correction needs to be applied after the shaping process. the patches would break if applied before. As I offered to patch the FSSK prototypes, I had to curve them also. This is why they have seen the final result in their boxes :-)
Last edited by idollar on 17 Mar 2016, 07:46, edited 1 time in total.

idollar
i$

17 Mar 2016, 07:45

phosphorglow wrote: Alrighty, gerber it shall be.

I'm guessing you intend on utilizing this as the main PCB for the controller as well? A variation of xwhatsits controller placed on a form fitting SSK application/ribbon wires between the capacitive PCB and the controller?
wcass wrote: Thanks. I would need to convert to gerber or DXF to directly import.
I can also open KiCAD or DipTrace data files.
Guys ... do not get me wrong, I do not want to put time pressure on anyone, but I have to ask when do you expect to be ready with this. I would love to order some of the new PCBs with the FSSKs. We could use this opportunity also to test the new controller.

Thanks a lot !!!

User avatar
XMIT
[ XMIT ]

17 Mar 2016, 11:42

phosphorglow - that jig is a brilliant idea. This would be really easy to laser cut from a singly sheet of acrylic or thin plywood. You could design in assembly tabs and slots so the whole thing just snaps together. For those of us with access to a laser cutter this would probably take 10-20 minutes to cut and assemble given a working file. As a side project (famous last words...) I can work on drawing this up if you share even some rudimentary dimensions.

Fixtures!

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