Restoring&Converting the IBM 4978 Beamship

I recently purchased a working IBM Series/1 system with a 4978 Display Terminal. Due to greater familiarity, the first thing I want to do is to restore the keyboard and convert it to USB in an easily reversible manner, so that I can continue to use it for its original purpose. When I opened the keyboard I was surprised by its plate and pcb, which has a LOT of vacant positions left. The matrix seems to have 22 columns and 8 rows if I counted correctly, which makes it bigger than the usual 16x8 matrix for model F and 23x4 of most other beamsprings. As far as I understand, the CommonSense firmware with the CY8CKIT-059 prototyping kit supports a maximum of 24 rows and 8 columns, so conversion shouldn't be too difficult. Does anyone here know where to get fitting card edge connectors?
I will update this thread as I make progress, so stay tuned!

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width vs displaywriter

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height vs displaywriter

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top case and keycaps removed

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contamination shield removed

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bottom of the switches

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pcb front

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pcb back
Noobmaen
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Unread post13 Jul 2018, 17:29

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Noobmaen
 
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Hate, hate, hate. That beamship is just so cool xD .

Good luck with the restoration though :) .
Chyros
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Unread post13 Jul 2018, 21:52

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Chyros
 
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That PCB looks absolutely stunning, so many capsense pads! And the fact that it seems none of those stems have any rust.
Bass

Unread post14 Jul 2018, 01:21

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Would be the extra pads functional? :?
PlacaFromHell
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Unread post14 Jul 2018, 19:46

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PlacaFromHell
 
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Oh, they BETTER BE!

As I mentioned elsewhere, I'd never suggest to drill holes into this unit's case, BUT... if the keyboard were to be used caseless (or with a purpose-built case) and enough replacement switches be procured, this ginormous PCB could be put to full use and get oh so many extra functionality from it. As some of us say, more keys is more goodness. :mrgreen:
depletedvespene
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Unread post14 Jul 2018, 20:18

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depletedvespene
 
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You can turn it in the most modern beamspring keyboard ever built, with a full ANSI/ISO layout. I'm dying of envy right now.

EDIT: not full layout but who cares numpad.
PlacaFromHell
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Unread post14 Jul 2018, 22:49

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Chyros wrote:Hate, hate, hate. That beamship is just so cool xD .

Good luck with the restoration though :) .

hate-hate-double-hate-loathe-entirely.jpg
JP!
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Unread post14 Jul 2018, 22:59

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that's fucking beautiful. how big is it in comparison to a regular Battleship?
mark201200
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Unread postYesterday, 00:34

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mark201200
 
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1988 1390881 M122 Battleship | 1988 1391404 Model M | 1995 1395712 Model M2 | M3501 AEKII | M0115 AEK | TADA68 (BOX Navy) | Logitech G710+ (MX Sand Brown)
mark201200 wrote:that's fucking beautiful. how big is it in comparison to a regular Battleship?
I'm also very interested in this.
Chyros
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Unread postYesterday, 08:24

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Just finished restoring my F107 and now I see this. I bet there are only a handful of those in existence anymore of these... WHAT A BEAUTY!
darkcruix
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Unread postYesterday, 11:19

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