Data General 6246 Keyboard Conversion

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snacksthecat
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28 Jan 2019, 03:22

A couple of guys on reddit reached out for help converting Data General boards. I finished one up last week and it turned out nicely.

But this other one that was sent to me... Is so nice!

I just have some photos for now but I'll also be posting my (probably failed) attempt to convert the protocol. Most likely this is going to be another controller replacement projects.

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benredikfyfasan

28 Jan 2019, 12:04

exciting! beautiful caps though!

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Dingster

28 Jan 2019, 15:04

Wow best of luck, very good looking board.

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snacksthecat
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29 Jan 2019, 05:26

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Polecat

29 Jan 2019, 05:38

Beautiful! I had one of these back in the '90s, and it had a lovely feel and sound. I really wanted to use it, but I had no way to convert it. I actually considered hand wiring the matrix and using the controller out of an AT clone keyboard, but I never got that far. I may still have it packed away in storage, but more likely I didn't save it.

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PlacaFromHell

29 Jan 2019, 09:26

It is the clicky version of the Fujitsu leaf spring, right?

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snacksthecat
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31 Jan 2019, 18:33

PlacaFromHell wrote:
29 Jan 2019, 09:26
It is the clicky version of the Fujitsu leaf spring, right?
Yep, here's a close up of what they look like in action (disassembled):

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Moosewing

31 Jan 2019, 19:33

Hey, that's my keyboard! Cool to see it getting some love on here. Super excited to get it back under my fingers because those are some absolute A+ Tier switches, to say nothing of the rest of the board.

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PlacaFromHell

01 Feb 2019, 16:30

Thanks Snacks. For how it looks, should feel like a better and maybe softer Futaba MA.

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Sangdrax

01 Feb 2019, 19:07

It's lucky that this is a 3rd Gen with the diodes so you can gut the controller and swap out. My Epson with the 2nd Gen leafsprings doesn't have that so the only hope I have is a converter. They are very lovely switches.

zigmachiz

01 Feb 2019, 21:10

I have four of these just sitting on my table. I'll get them working some day because the switches are a dream to use.

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snacksthecat
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10 Feb 2019, 02:09

I decided that I've been moving too slow on this project so I'm not going to poke around with the protocol this time around.

I got the matrix traced out and got everything wired up the other day. The majority of pins lined up nicely across two ICs. The problem is that a Teensy++ 2.0 doesn't fit nicely as a drop-in solution. For that reason, I had to tilt the pins outward on both sides. Here's what I'm talking about:
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From the top it looks pretty natural:
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And from the bottom:
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And here's the whole thing soldered in place with the additional wires as well:
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