Fortune 1000 Keyboard with Digitran Cap Leaf Switches, Xwhatsit USB

User avatar
OldIsNew

01 Nov 2018, 05:46

Got lucky with this one. I knew nothing about it but it looked interesting so picked it up and it turned out to be a Digitran capacitive leaf switch keyboard. It was dirty, but overall in good shape. The PCB has a sticker dated 7-85.
Foutune_orig_small.jpg
Foutune_orig_small.jpg (346.52 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
Fourtune_case_back1_small.jpg
Fourtune_case_back1_small.jpg (210.66 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
I was pleased when I started pulling some key caps and saw the switches.
Fortune_cap_off1_small.jpg
Fortune_cap_off1_small.jpg (142.8 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
Fortune_switch_tops_small.jpg
Fortune_switch_tops_small.jpg (229.34 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
PCB back and front:
Fortune_PCB_back_small.jpg
Fortune_PCB_back_small.jpg (592.75 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
Foutune_cap_leaves1_small.jpg
Foutune_cap_leaves1_small.jpg (344.65 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
The columns are represented by the metal leaves and the rows by pads under solder mask on the PCB:
Foutune_cap_leaves2_small.jpg
Foutune_cap_leaves2_small.jpg (310.17 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
Plungers on the switch tops in the front plate press the leaves down and activate the switches:
Fortune_switch_back_small.jpg
Fortune_switch_back_small.jpg (331.84 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
Traced out the rows and columns:
Rows_front_2_small.jpg
Rows
Rows_front_2_small.jpg (215.8 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
Colums_back_2_small.jpg
Columns
Colums_back_2_small.jpg (267.72 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
Then wired up the Xwhatsit and the CapsLock LED:
Fortune_wired1_small.jpg
Fortune_wired1_small.jpg (497.54 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
I went ahead and retrobrighted the key caps and put things back together:
Fortune_finished1_small.jpg
Fortune_finished1_small.jpg (224.36 KiB) Viewed 1704 times
Quick video of typing on it and a link with some info about Fortune Systems:
https://randoc.wordpress.com/2016/06/05 ... e-systems/

xxhellfirexx

01 Nov 2018, 07:09

How does the switch feel and smoothness compare to other leaf springs such as Fujitsu's?

User avatar
Sangdrax

01 Nov 2018, 07:17

VERY nice find. Never seen this particular model of them before. Great color scheme too, especially after the retrobright. Looks like the Digitran name for it was Golden Touch. That's very interesting.

User avatar
Hypersphere

01 Nov 2018, 15:34

Excellent work!

User avatar
ZedTheMan

01 Nov 2018, 18:49

Mixing leaf springs and capacitive sensing? That rubs me in all the best ways.

It looks lovely, great job with the restoration!

User avatar
OldIsNew

02 Nov 2018, 22:47

Thanks for the nice comments everyone! I first learned about these switches after seeing Sangdrax's post on GH about his conversion of a Harris-Sanders Smart Terminal ( https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=90 ... msg2436488 ) and used his post as a guide when I was able to pick one up ( workshop-f7/harris-smart-terminal-xwhat ... lit=harris) . That's why I was happy when I pulled a keycap off this board and saw the same switches.
xxhellfirexx wrote: How does the switch feel and smoothness compare to other leaf springs such as Fujitsu's?
I just got out one of my Fujitsu 3rd gen leaf spring boards (Tandy 1000) and I'd say that the Digitran switches are heavier ( likely due to the external springs) but as far as smoothness, they feel very similar to me - which is really nice.

User avatar
Sangdrax

02 Nov 2018, 23:32

Related, the Fujitsu 2nd gen with the dampers feel like vintage Keytronic with a hard foam mod to me except with that same slight weighting difference since the Fujitsus are like 45g IIRC and the others are 50-55g.

User avatar
JP!

06 Nov 2018, 00:17

I just bought one of these on eBay. According to article you linked mine comes from this companies initial model, the 32:16. I am really hoping it has the same switches. Yours turned out super nice with cleanup and retro brighting.
001.jpg
001.jpg (251.11 KiB) Viewed 1432 times
002.jpg
002.jpg (87.35 KiB) Viewed 1432 times

User avatar
OldIsNew

06 Nov 2018, 01:40

JP! wrote: I just bought one of these on eBay. According to article you linked mine comes from this companies initial model, the 32:16. I am really hoping it has the same switches. Yours turned out super nice with cleanup and retro brighting.
Ty!

Your board is very cool! A most excellent find! Finding new stuff makes it even better - I had never even heard of Fortune Systems before I came across my board. It's really cool that you found a 32:16 for sure! I also really like that your board still has the keyboard overlay! I bet it has the same switches, but either way it's a nice board!

User avatar
JP!

06 Nov 2018, 03:38

When I seen it pop up today I thought it looked familiar, but only since I had previously read this thread otherwise I would not have known about Fortune systems. I agree, it's always fun finding something new. Also I can't wait until this one is all cleaned up and converted. I really like the layout.

Definitely a neat looking setup
Image

Some additional info as well: http://www.bitsavers.org/pdf/fortuneSystems/

User avatar
OldIsNew

25 Nov 2018, 05:11

JP! wrote: I just bought one of these on eBay.
Has it arrived yet? I'm really curious because Sangdrax said he bought a Fortune board that was KeyTronic F&F! I like vintage KT F&F but it is a difference for sure.

listofoptions

26 Nov 2018, 02:46

OldIsNew wrote: Got lucky with this one. I knew nothing about it but it looked interesting so picked it up and it turned out to be a Digitran capacitive leaf switch keyboard. It was dirty, but overall in good shape. The PCB has a sticker dated 7-85.
....
I just got one of these myself, got some pictures that im going to use to attempt to reverse engineer the pcb. from cursory glances here is my attempt at reverse engineering: on mine the only chip that i cannot determine the part number for is the one in the upper right hand corner of the pcb (looking at the leaves) other than that the columns are controlled by two 74ls259 8 bit addressible latches, and the rows are multiplexed into the mystery chip (which im going to assume is some kind of comparitor) via a cd4051 8 to 1 analog multiplexer, there is a 74ls14 hex inverter chip which i assume is input protection/inverting amplifier, as its near the cord jack. as the controller chip is socketed i just really need to know what the pinout is for it (bog standard intel 8748) and what goes where into it. should be able to fabricate an alternative controller as soon as i figure out that mystery chip (i wont know whats an input or an output just from the controller pinout alone).

my board desperately needed dusting, wasn't really that dirty though. it really needs some lube after cleaning.

listofoptions

26 Nov 2018, 03:12

<double post, deleted>

User avatar
OldIsNew

28 Nov 2018, 00:22

listofoptions wrote:
I just got one of these myself, got some pictures that im going to use to attempt to reverse engineer the pcb...
Very cool! It is an interesting board IMO - keep us posted!

listofoptions

28 Nov 2018, 01:43

OldIsNew wrote:
listofoptions wrote:
I just got one of these myself, got some pictures that im going to use to attempt to reverse engineer the pcb...
Very cool! It is an interesting board IMO - keep us posted!
can you actually send me a pic of that chip on your board? it looks like the one on mine is some weird proprietary numbering of a common chip (lots of companies did that sadly)

User avatar
OldIsNew

28 Nov 2018, 04:59

listofoptions wrote:
can you actually send me a pic of that chip on your board? it looks like the one on mine is some weird proprietary numbering of a common chip (lots of companies did that sadly)
Are you referring to U6 in this photo? - I'm happy to try to help for sure! Just want to be sure it's the right chip before I reopen the board for pics.
U6.jpg
U6.jpg (420.88 KiB) Viewed 1002 times

listofoptions

30 Nov 2018, 02:56

OldIsNew wrote:
listofoptions wrote:
can you actually send me a pic of that chip on your board? it looks like the one on mine is some weird proprietary numbering of a common chip (lots of companies did that sadly)
Are you referring to U6 in this photo? - I'm happy to try to help for sure! Just want to be sure it's the right chip before I reopen the board for pics.
U6.jpg
yup! thats the one! mine has some weird part number, hoping other's don't. Thanks!

User avatar
OldIsNew

01 Dec 2018, 04:42

listofoptions wrote:
OldIsNew wrote:
listofoptions wrote:
can you actually send me a pic of that chip on your board? it looks like the one on mine is some weird proprietary numbering of a common chip (lots of companies did that sadly)
Here's a pic of the chip with numbers. Hope it helps!
Fortune 1000 U6 chip.jpg
Fortune 1000 U6 chip.jpg (103.58 KiB) Viewed 927 times

User avatar
OldIsNew

16 Dec 2018, 04:01

listofoptions wrote:
listofoptions wrote:
can you actually send me a pic of that chip on your board? it looks like the one on mine is some weird proprietary numbering of a common chip (lots of companies did that sadly)
Any luck with it?

listofoptions

08 Jan 2019, 00:46

sorry been busy with work, life an IBM 029, and a teletype 40k, so i haven't quite gotten to this board yet. after the 029 and the 40k i should be able to trace the board out.

Post Reply

Return to “Workshop”