Recycle cheap qpad steel plate(1mm)

User avatar
pfoff

15 Mar 2017, 14:03

I bought a QPad Board with blue cherries to harvest the switches. Now the 1mm thick(!!!) steel plate which is pretty rigid lies in front of me and my brain doesn't stop tinkering with it. To good for trash to thin to use. The switches keep moving around. Now I wonder if there are some kind of clips or something to put them under the switches. Before I disassmbled it the switches were fixed by the pcb. But I can't use that, I need a teensy to run tmk on it...
Maybe I really should trash it, anyway...

Sigmoid

16 Mar 2017, 09:52

Why would you want to harvest cherry blues of all things? They are probably the most readily available discrete keyswitch on the market...

User avatar
vvp

16 Mar 2017, 10:20

Sigmoid: A good discounted mechanical keyboard is cheaper than buying the switches and keycaps separately. A significant disadvantage is that disassembling it takes about an hour or two.

pfoff: I do not know about any clips but you can always glue the switches to the plate.

Findecanor

17 Mar 2017, 01:58

A hand-wired keyboard would need glue anyway. Otherwise you'd risk pulling the switch out every time you'd pull a keycap.

Maybe you could thicken the plate with some adhesive-backed vinyl with a nice colour/pattern. The holes could be cut out from the other side with a scalpel/x-acto/boxcutter knife using the plate itself as guide.
This would give you the opportunity to combine the plate with material around it, fill holes without them showing etc. which would be harder with a plate that is not the correct thickness.

User avatar
pfoff

20 Mar 2017, 23:59

Yeah, it was much cheaper than switches! And it took less than 20 minutes to get them out.
It think it would need much glue. Think, I will give Findecanors solution a try.
But this looks a lot of work to me!
Need to find a .5mm plate for that!
Thanks for the hint, that I'll need to glue'em anyway. Makes sense. What kind of glue do you guys use?
Would I still be able to open the switches, when glued?

User avatar
Daniel Beardsmore

21 Mar 2017, 01:17

Alps SKCL/M and SKBL/M are designed for a 1 mm plate. I don't know the various dimensions, but I just checked Siemens STB 11/21 and that's also a 1.5 mm plate.

Findecanor

21 Mar 2017, 04:26

pfoff wrote: Would I still be able to open the switches, when glued?
You couldn't open them anyway, because the tabs that holds the switch together need to move and those are restricted by a standard 14×14 mm plate hole. Only enthusiast-made plates with special cutouts for those tabs allow switches to be opened while mounted.

These tabs are on east and west sides, while the snaps that would snap the switch in the plate are on the north and south sides.
From what I have seen, most builders that hand-wire switches use hot glue on the north and south which would not interfere with the tabs on the east and west sides.
I'm not a fan of hot glue so I have not tried it but I have heard that it could be pried off more easily if alcohol is applied. Be very aware that alcohol could also dissolve paint and lubrication, though ...

I have found an alternative to glue, but it works only for plates with cutouts... Open the switch, mount the bottom into the plate, insert a small piece of plastic card into the diode-slot and reassemble the switch. If the card is of the right size and thickness, it will prevent the snap on that side of the switch from opening and thus prevent the switch from being pulled - fully. The snap on the opposite side can still unsnap from the plate.

Findecanor

21 Mar 2017, 04:28

Daniel Beardsmore wrote: Alps SKCL/M and SKBL/M are designed for a 1 mm plate. I don't know the various dimensions, but I just checked Siemens STB 11/21 and that's also a 1.5 mm plate.
How about SMK switches? They fit into 14×14 mm holes, that are the same dimension as for Cherry MX but I don't know if they require a PCB or if they snap into a plate.

User avatar
vvp

21 Mar 2017, 11:24

I do not care about being able to open the switches after they are mounted. My plate does not have the cutouts to support it anyway.

If you have a thin plate (up to 1.5 mm) then hot glue can work as Findecanor explained.
If you have a thick plate (3-5 mm) then hot glue will not work because there will not be a good way to force it between the plate and the switch. If you find a good way how to force it there then it would work well but I was not able to do it: post181273.html#p181273
Maybe putting hot glue on the slot walls before the switch is inserted and only then insert the switch may work. I did not try this approach.

User avatar
pfoff

22 Mar 2017, 02:59

Wow, lots of infos!
So I amgoing to try to glue them in. The surface does not seem to be harmed by alcohol, so I'll get'em out.
Gonna let you all know, how it worked. And for my other project I will order a plate that has 1.5mm.

User avatar
Daniel Beardsmore

22 Mar 2017, 09:21

Findecanor wrote: How about SMK switches? They fit into 14×14 mm holes, that are the same dimension as for Cherry MX but I don't know if they require a PCB or if they snap into a plate.
I assume you mean the DIN-compliant type, "second generation" or "KKM" or what not.

No schematics have been discovered for any SMK series. They're all plate mount but some second generation switches are also PCB mount too and were often used that way (especially in Laser keyboards). You'd have to get the plate thickness off an existing keyboard. Wait, you had my SMK switch keyboard!

User avatar
pfoff

20 Apr 2017, 02:13

I think I'll give it a try, my friend made up a little case for it, now I need some spare time to get it done, but looks as if it's a good starting point. He made it all with a dreml by hand, and the wood is hard! Would love to know what kind of wood it is, btw...
Front view
Front view
DSC_0003.JPG (2.66 MiB) Viewed 507 times
Back
Back
DSC_0004.JPG (2.89 MiB) Viewed 507 times

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