Author Topic: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Typing Test)  (Read 13188 times)

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Offline mustardgreens

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[IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Typing Test)
« on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 18:12:11 »
INGOT66
for Leopold FC660C
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Introduction
I have been a fan of Topre since I first discovered it. The FC660C has always been a staple, but the thin plastic housing leaves much to be desired with very few options available in the aftermarket.

This is the Ingot66: our premium no-expense spared brass case for Leopold FC660C. Inspired by the shape of the gold bar, we decided to bring some new elegance to the Topre world.

We focused on a super minimalistic design which lets the keyboard speak for itself. If you've ever opened up a FC660C, you'll know that one of the board's signature features is its controller. Whether you are using the stock controller or a modded one, this case is made to show it off. To us, nothing beats Topre, so we wanted to make a case that could stand up to the quality of the FC660C internals.

So today we bring you the following prototypes. These are not renders: they're real photos we took of real keyboards. We came to geekhack first because I still believe this is the heart of the keyboard community. Looking forward to hearing what you think and what you want to see from us going forward.













Quick Specs

Solid Brass PNPKEY Ingot66 FC660C Case
• 6 deg typing angle
• Solid brass top - brushed sodium di-chromate passivated surface
• Solid brass bottom - “Dual stage” ultra fine blast medium, sodium di-chromate passivated surface
• Acrylic display window with dip-switch cutout (also will include other windows for hasu/no cutout)
• Dimensions: 353mm (length) x 137mm (width) x 30mm (back height)
• TOTAL ASSEMBLED WEIGHT: 4.495kg
• Max 50 units

Aluminum/Brass PNPKEY Ingot66 FC660C Case
• 6 deg typing angle
• 6063 aluminum top - “Dual stage” ultra fine blast medium, Anodized, Colors TBD
• Solid brass bottom - “Dual stage” ultra fine blast medium, sodium di-chromate passivated surface
• Acrylic display window with dip-switch cutout (also will include other windows for hasu/no cutout)
• Dimensions: 353mm (length) x 137mm (width) x 30mm (back height)
• TOTAL ASSEMBLED WEIGHT: 2.864kg
• Max ~100 units

Who We Are

A bit about who we are: My name is Matt Pankhurst and I work in a law office in Toronto, Canada. I spend my life typing, and to me nothing beats Topre. Though I've been on geekhack and involved in the Canadian mech scene since 2017, I wanted to earn your trust with this project, and do it with integrity. So I partnered up with Jeffrey Pang a former webdev/programmer and current product designer who is most known as the creator of Luftverk, which produces the world's most bespoke CNC Titanium yoyos. For the past six years Jeff has worked in the manufacturing/product development industry and is a the mastermind who brought our vision to life. He engineered the housing from inner pockets to the bezel, and managed to fit in the top mounted controller with a window while keeping the entire package slim and easy to assemble.

Our company logo started as somewhat of a joke, as our last names “Pang and Pank” Keyboards. Jeff noticed the abbreviation PNP, a common transistor type from when he worked on electronics. We decided to shorten up the name up to “pnpkey” combining the transistor prongs to a keycap, representing the intersection between technical engineering and artistic design. 

How we got to where we are today

I contacted Jeff about the idea in January 2020, but we started really working on it in July. After collaborating ideas and making a rough CAD drawing, the prototypes began production in late September. The most time consuming part was going back and forth with the manufacturer to figure out how to optimize the tool paths and finishing processes in attempts to increase quality. Due to the high material cost of brass, we tried our best to keep it reasonable but we didn’t want to compromise our initial vision of a very premium product with no corners cut. We are offering two versions, a full brass one and a more affordable aluminum top, brass bottom one.

Solid Brass Version - The Technical Details

This was our uncompromised vision of what the Ingot66 was to be - a full brass case that tapered outwards like a gold bar. We knew it would be prohibitively expensive regardless of how we designed it due to the materials involved. The case features an ultra-fine blasted texture and a sodium di-chromate passivated surface.



The “Dual stage” Fine Blast Medium, Sodium Di-chromate Passivated Finish

The finish we requested was a blast medium Jeff uses on his yoyos - but because this housing is CNC milled and not turned on a lathe, the machining marks are a lot larger and deeper. When we discussed this with the manufacturer, they said it would not be possible to use such a fine medium on a milled product. But we knew the larger grit blast would produce a rough cheap feeling, much like you see on the mass produced aluminum anodized cases and parts. For this finish to be possible, each surface is mirror-polished to remove the machining marks, and then blasted. This of course raises the price, but the results speak for themselves. This is why we refer to it as a “Dual Stage” finish, as there is this process of polishing first that no one will ever see.

The problem we all know about brass is how it tends to tarnish over time. Going back and forth from the manufacturer, they recommended a “passivation” of the surface, using sodium di-chromate. This decreases the likelihood of the brass surface tarnishing, making the surface inert so that it will not react with oxygen. If you want more info about brass passivation, here is a great article we found online that describes the process we use:  “Chromate Conversion Coatings”: http://copperalliance.org.uk/uploads/2018/03/117-section-5-how-to-make-it-in-brass.pdf

The base plate features a brushed finish, which follows a very similar process as above. The sodium di-chromate passivation process is applied to the insides and out, insuring the case stays tarnish free for a long time. We decided on a brushed finish for the brass version, since it offers a level of contrast between the top and the bottom pieces.



The Engraving

We decided to go against the cheaper method of a simple laser engraving and went all out with a 0.5mm emboss. This was one of those things that Jeff wanted to get perfect - but didn’t know would be an issue until it was time to get the prototype done. We wanted our logo featuring the 6 Ingot bars to be machined into the surface. This was something that we realized would not be possible since a mill machine has a spinning cutting head. This means you can not cut small areas with 90 degrees like our logo has. The solution came when we contacted a few companies and realized that this kind of logo is actually done by laser engraving the same spot, over and over and over again. The engraving you see above takes more than half an hour to do, and the laser goes over the same spot 150+ times. The manufacturer asked if we were sure we wanted to do it this way, since it increases our costs, but as an uncompromised luxury product we wanted to stay true to our vision.



The Insides - A focus on ease of assembly

The inside of this case was designed to be assembled as user friendly as possible, as we knew we would be selling a DIY case. I threw Jeff in the deep end by asking to design the FC660C case that is normally a plastic snap together clam shell design. Because metal doesn’t flex and can’t just snap together, this meant we couldn’t just copy the existing design of the original housing and it also meant there are no mounting holes for the plate much like other custom keyboards that are available. We also suspect this might be why there is so little aftermarket support for FC660C cases.



Another huge design issue with the original plastic case, is that the controller is mounted to the bottom while the plate/keys are mounted to the top with a plethora of tiny wires connecting the two. We both saw this as an accident waiting to happen, especially with our 1.66kg brass bottom. We wanted to decrease the chance that a customer would damage the delicate wires during installation.

Our solution was to top mount everything. Both the plate and controller is directly bolted to the case top, lowering the chance that someone could tear the wires. Six M3x10mm screws secure the plate to the top via the edge slots that normally locate the plate to the plastic housing. Two M3x8mm screws secure the controller, aligning it with the USB outlet. Nothing is mounted to the bottom plate - allowing the user to take their time installing it as a separate piece.



The window was another huge challenge. This was an idea that Jeff thought of after disassembling the FC660C. I mentioned that users often swap out with custom controllers, a somewhat unique thing about Leopold keyboards. The acrylic window is secured by four M2.5x4mm low clearance screws, usually used to mount hard drives into laptops. This offered the clearance we needed to include the window but not contact any PCB components on the inside.

We also opted out of more permanent options such as glue, or press fit as we wanted this piece to be replaceable by the customer if it got scratched up, or even cut their own color/designs. Since laser cutting is such a common thing, we can offer to release the vector file and let you create your own. Our kit includes a cut out for the stock 4 dip switches, and we are also planning to include another one either without a hole, or with a smaller one for Hasu controllers depending on user response.

Aluminum & Brass Version

Everything said about the full brass version above is the same as the Aluminum version. The design is exactly the same, but the top housing is machined out of 6063 aluminum and the bottom is brass with the same passivated blasted finish mentioned above. Pictured here is our black anodized version, the top housing saves a lot on the price due to material costs. This version is still very heavy due to the fact the entire bottom is still a solid piece of brass. We originally aimed to use 6061 but the manufacturer recommended the more expensive 6063. After anodizing it, they realized that the anodizing on 6063 is much more consistent for our final release.













Comparison to a regular FC660C

Not only does the typing experience feel vastly different, but after using our housing, it makes the stock keyboard feel like a toy. The photos show the size difference but does not show how heavy even the aluminum version is compared to the plastic housing. Here pictured is our third prototype in "Coffee Brown". We want suggestions for colors as well, but black is for sure.







Details of the construction

These help illustrate the components involved with the assembly process that was explained earlier for the brass version. Again pictured here is the coffee version.





3D Printed Prototype

Before spending the money on the prototypes, we got a 3d prints done to verify the shape and feel. Luckily we did, as changes were needed regarding the screw holes and how the plate mounted. This is a crucial step in proof of concept before initial prototypes, and saved time and money by avoiding machining twice.





FAQ

• Vendors? International shipping?
For fulfilment of a group buy, we will setup a website with a cart that calculates the shipping costs. Due to the weight of these keyboard cases, International shipping is pricy but will still be offered. Currently that is the only way we will be selling these. We may plan on releasing some after the GB but not at this lowered price point. At this price point, venders would probably not be possible because we’d just barely break even or lose money.

• Why should we trust you?
We have showed to the best of our abilities the work, hours and money already dumped into this project. We didn’t want to take chances on renders as we both felt it was too risky to not know what a product would actually turn out like, especially one that is this expensive.

Jeffrey has shipped thousands of products to customers in the past 5 years, and has been involved with over +50 retail stores for his yoyo business. We have been friends for over 10 years, and our main purpose of this project was to develop something I truly thought should exist for the FC660C - much like a thank you to one of my favourite keyboards. Although there will likely be things that can happen that is out of our control, we are both willing to be transparent to everyone involved. Our pricing is decided with the recommendation of Jeffrey - to be able to cover the few units that are damaged, or defective and also send out whatever replacement parts are needed if a customer experiences issues. This is the same way he runs Luftverk - and also makes sure that both we and the customers are happy with the results without compromises.

• When?
If all goes well and we get enough interest in this project, we plan to launch a GB in late January. If it takes more time for the GB to happen then we are willing to extend. Because we already past the prototype stage it should be a lot quicker to put into production and get to customers. A very generous estimate would be around 5 months, so if the GB ends in February, it would be shipping by July. This could change though but we can keep customers notified and updated as things get completed. 

• Other Concerns?
Our biggest concern was brought to us by the manufacturers. They mentioned that the brass can very easily be marked, or develop surface scratches by incorrect handling or transportation. We want to make every single unit perfect, but of course some defects might occur that is out of our control. This is why we have built into our price that a few units will get damaged or does not meet our strict QC. We spoke to the manufacturer to try and find a solution and already developed a foam transportation box for each one when it goes between processes like being transported from machining to polishing to blasting to passivation. We are both very much perfectionists, and with our combined knowledge we are confident we can deliver without putting anyone in a bad position.

• Price point after the group buy?
As mentioned above, the GB price is at a discount as a thank-you for early support and trusting us with this project. We are undecided but if we decide to release a few afterwards on our website, it will be at a greater price point than what we can offer now. If someone misses out on the GB and wants in after, again we would have to charge the greater price to be fair to our early supporters.

• Are there ways to make this cheaper?
We asked this same question to the shop we are working with, since we really didn’t know what to expect with such large pieces of brass. The biggest thing is just the sheer amount of brass that is used. Brass is very expensive which is why when you see other keyboards, they have a small little weight inset into aluminum. Even for the aluminum version the base is a 1.66kg chunk of brass, after having the window machined away. Why the cost increased after the prototype was mostly due to us not wanting to compromise our outlandish vision of an endgame FC660C case. Other costs that we didn’t want to compromise is stuff like the fine blast finish - we have to polish it first to achieve this. Things like the depth of the logo on the back takes a lot of time as mentioned earlier. Even things like using 6063 vs 6061 again adds to the pricing. And lastly we build in the costs of the ones we expect to be defective from factory so customers are happy with the board they receive. We think this is a fair price point for this product - and what we can safely do it for in case we do end up with a high defect rate. If there isn’t enough demand we simply won’t do it.

• What keycaps are used in your photos?
Featured here were a mixture of GMK WOB, GMK Zhuyin (by HoodrowThrillson/OneCreativeMind), and stock FC660C caps.


Estimated Pricing
Depending on interest here is our estimation on pricing:
$550-650 for the Aluminum/Brass version
$850-950 for the Solid Brass version

Overall MOQ: Probably around 60 units, combined Aluminum/Brass & Solid Brass editions.

If you are interested in supporting a GB, or just want to give us feedback please help us by filling this Google Form!

Thanks if you've read this far!
« Last Edit: Thu, 04 February 2021, 16:28:02 by mustardgreens »

Offline mustardgreens

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Typing Test)
« Reply #1 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 18:12:42 »
Update 2021/02/04: Typing test posted

« Last Edit: Thu, 04 February 2021, 16:14:24 by mustardgreens »

Offline JP911

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #2 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 18:19:25 »
Hey,

I was the one who worked with Matt on this project. He has helped tremendously in the design of the case, giving me input on design ideas and guiding the direction of this whole project. This was actually a lot of work - even more so than a lot of previous manufacturing projects i have done but we figured out the majority of the large production concerns, enough to feel confident to do an interest check.

If there any technical concerns you guys have I'm all ears, and happy to answer any questions regarding the machining/manufacturing of this housing.

Offline Alpha1

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #3 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 18:23:28 »
Looks awesome, GLWIC!

Offline vnflynn

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #4 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 18:48:08 »
I will be getting one . Thank you for your love on Topre .


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

Offline datfroyodoe

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #5 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 19:15:36 »
glwic! nice to see more topre projects. will the custom controller's BT work with your case?

oh and your google form link is borked btw

Offline Chippy

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #6 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 19:32:40 »
thats a big girl jesus. I love seeing case options for fc660c.
This and the swiss cheese keyboard is the next generation of keyboards

Offline homerowco

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #7 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 19:47:28 »
good damn job on that acrylic window!

Offline mustardgreens

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #8 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 19:53:01 »
glwic! nice to see more topre projects. will the custom controller's BT work with your case?

oh and your google form link is borked btw

Hey sorry about the link - was a formatting issue. Does it work now?

As long as the custom controller fits in the stock Leopold housing, it will for sure work with ours. We also plan on including extra windows, either one without a dipswitch cutout or a smaller cutout to match controllers like Hasu which has a single round switch.

Offline donny_pete

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #9 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 19:57:59 »
looks interesting. GLWIC!

Offline datfroyodoe

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #10 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 20:06:52 »

Hey sorry about the link - was a formatting issue. Does it work now?

As long as the custom controller fits in the stock Leopold housing, it will for sure work with ours. We also plan on including extra windows, either one without a dipswitch cutout or a smaller cutout to match controllers like Hasu which has a single round switch.

yea works now!

and not so much about the fitment of the controller but was wondering if the bluetooth connectivity works with the alu/brass case design. has that been tested yet?

Offline ReverbSlush

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #11 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 21:00:39 »
love this case and idea... can honestly say I'd do unspeakable things to get a premium brass HHKB case if you feel like keepin the topre train goin.

Offline toumatakeshi

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #12 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 21:30:37 »
Love this. Been looking at premium topre endgame but I could never really go HHKB as I need my arrow keys.
Would love to hear typing tests whenever you're able to send those out. Maybe even a comparison side-by-side with the normal FC660C?

Offline clackeys

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #13 on: Sun, 06 December 2020, 22:42:07 »
We love this! The bezel on this is perfect. Maybe could use a gold ingot artisan?

Offline Ram

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #14 on: Mon, 07 December 2020, 00:16:03 »
Love the design

Offline noorejji

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #15 on: Mon, 07 December 2020, 07:41:34 »
I appreciate the love for Topre, but you’re asking up to $650 for the aluminum version? What’s so killer about this to warrant that tag? I’d rather hold my breath for another run of the heavy, but that’s just me.

Offline JP911

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #16 on: Mon, 07 December 2020, 08:24:45 »
I appreciate the love for Topre, but you’re asking up to $650 for the aluminum version? What’s so killer about this to warrant that tag? I’d rather hold my breath for another run of the heavy, but that’s just me.

It is explained in detail in the FAQ. But I’d like to extend that us calling it an “aluminum version” is kind of discrediting the fact that it still weighs 2.8kg due to the CNC machined brass bottom. In the aluminum version there is still more brass than aluminum which is absurdly costly.

If you notice on the heavy 6, the bottom is a single metal plate. I am unsure about the manufacturing technique involved but it looks like a water jet cut steel piece. If we did it this way we could half the price. Our case is the equivalent to machining the top twice. The bottom is actually nearly the same cost as the top because of intricacies involving the window. This doesn’t discredit the heavy at all as we both think it’s a beautiful case and very well done.

I recommend reading through the IC as it explains where the costs are allocated for this project but if you have other specific question feel free to ask! If the community consensus is that they’d rather see us hit a cheaper price point and sacrifice luxury features we are open to suggestions in the google form,
« Last Edit: Mon, 07 December 2020, 08:52:58 by JP911 »

Offline mustardgreens

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #17 on: Mon, 07 December 2020, 08:54:28 »
Thanks for the overwhelming support everyone, have heard a lot of good feedback so far.

Would love to hear typing tests whenever you're able to send those out. Maybe even a comparison side-by-side with the normal FC660C?

Sure, we'll get on it. Thanks for your interest!

good damn job on that acrylic window!

Thanks! It was tricky but we got it the way we wanted, no contact with the controller.  :)

and not so much about the fitment of the controller but was wondering if the bluetooth connectivity works with the alu/brass case design. has that been tested yet?

Oops, misunderstood you. I assume you mean this one (https://item.taobao.com/item.htm?spm=a1z10.5-c.w4002-1201089627.20.365e7012VBpxf6&id=590236576831) ? I don't expect any issues but I'll order it and test it for you before we move to a GB. Looks like it's PRC shipping only, but I can hopefully get it here and test it by the end of the month.

I’d rather hold my breath for another run of the heavy, but that’s just me.

And you absolutely can, we're just here to bring our vision to life. Interest is higher than I expected, so hopefully if we get good numbers for the run we can do it for less. Thanks for checking it out :)

love this case and idea... can honestly say I'd do unspeakable things to get a premium brass HHKB case if you feel like keepin the topre train goin.

That's the dream, but it also depends on the success of this project, fingers and toes are crossed!
« Last Edit: Mon, 07 December 2020, 09:07:31 by mustardgreens »

Offline treeleaf64

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #18 on: Mon, 07 December 2020, 09:19:36 »
Treeleaf approved
Diamond polishing tester/service
Badwordposter on Geekhack Interest check
Gateron and Gater Ron are Treeleaf's friends

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Offline noorejji

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #19 on: Mon, 07 December 2020, 09:54:16 »
I appreciate the love for Topre, but you’re asking up to $650 for the aluminum version? What’s so killer about this to warrant that tag? I’d rather hold my breath for another run of the heavy, but that’s just me.

It is explained in detail in the FAQ. But I’d like to extend that us calling it an “aluminum version” is kind of discrediting the fact that it still weighs 2.8kg due to the CNC machined brass bottom. In the aluminum version there is still more brass than aluminum which is absurdly costly.

If you notice on the heavy 6, the bottom is a single metal plate. I am unsure about the manufacturing technique involved but it looks like a water jet cut steel piece. If we did it this way we could half the price. Our case is the equivalent to machining the top twice. The bottom is actually nearly the same cost as the top because of intricacies involving the window. This doesn’t discredit the heavy at all as we both think it’s a beautiful case and very well done.

I recommend reading through the IC as it explains where the costs are allocated for this project but if you have other specific question feel free to ask! If the community consensus is that they’d rather see us hit a cheaper price point and sacrifice luxury features we are open to suggestions in the google form,
Thanks for the reply. I realise that I came off as a bit ignorant, but the implementation of all these luxury features are indeed what my criticism boils down to. An offering with a less premium bottom would indeed be something I'm interested in. A window for the DIP switches, something I've touched once in my life, is not something I'm super stoked with spending money on. Let's say that window costs $50 to implement, then why not just buy a custom controller which makes the switches redundant? A high quality finish on on the other hand is something I can see, feel and appreciate daily. I don't know, I get the no-compromise mentality, but some level of moderation is warranted imo. In general here at GH, the abundance of overengineering just gets a bit much sometimes.

You obviously won't have any problem selling 150 units as is right now. In the long run however, I think a 'value' option would be neat. GLWIC

Offline mustardgreens

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #20 on: Mon, 07 December 2020, 12:38:36 »
Thanks for the reply. I realise that I came off as a bit ignorant, but the implementation of all these luxury features are indeed what my criticism boils down to.

Not at all, it's good to hear feedback. That's the whole point of an IC, your input is definitely heard and appreciated. I will keep it in mind

An offering with a less premium bottom would indeed be something I'm interested in.

Yep -- that's the funny thing about this case... especially for the Aluminum ver, a solid chunk of the work and expense is going to the base, which is a totally unnecessary luxury considering it's on the bottom. It's "Extra". So I get it. For your everyday typer, you really don't need a keyboard like this lol. My mentality is, I'd rather go all-out on one board than do three boards halfheartedly. But ultimately in running an IC we're here to cater to the gh community.

why not just buy a custom controller which makes the switches redundant?

IMO, you definitely should. With the window you can swap controllers and show it! Yes on our protos we have a little laser cutout for dipswitches or hasu controller reset button (which doesnt add any extra cost to cut) just because why not. Personally I don't use dipswitches, but we didn't want to limit functionality for anyone who does. We also plan to include with each case a solid window without the cutout to give you an alternate aesthetic choice.

Offline hammerbrotha

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #21 on: Tue, 08 December 2020, 00:46:50 »
I am incredibly impressed by the IC, the detail, the prototype.  I LOL'd when i read the statement indicating that the pics were not renders, i had to do a double take as they look so good.

The love and attention to all things topre has been really great. Good luck w/ this interest check. I won't be participating but hope it does really well.

Offline Yuinth

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #22 on: Thu, 07 January 2021, 09:55:22 »
This is a very detailed IC and I like the design. The amount of detail and the photos are making me want to buy a FC660C and a case. GLWIC.

After visiting Jeff site now I also want a yo-yo.

Offline mustardgreens

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #23 on: Fri, 08 January 2021, 10:11:19 »
I am incredibly impressed by the IC, the detail, the prototype.  I LOL'd when i read the statement indicating that the pics were not renders, i had to do a double take as they look so good.

The love and attention to all things topre has been really great. Good luck w/ this interest check. I won't be participating but hope it does really well.

Thanks. We have put our heart and soul into it. Since the release of the 980c a couple years ago, there hasn't been much innovation in the Topre world. Topre is no longer trending, so financially it's a waste of resources to even pursue this project in the first place. There is no doubt that we would sell vastly more units if we made a cherry-compatible 65% with a similar design instead. But this project is born out of passion for Topre.

This is a very detailed IC and I like the design. The amount of detail and the photos are making me want to buy a FC660C and a case. GLWIC.

After visiting Jeff site now I also want a yo-yo.

Thank you for your support! Hope you join the FC660C club. It's an awesome board, and there's plenty of room to customize it and make it your own.

Offline sighduck

  • Posts: 1
Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #24 on: Tue, 12 January 2021, 22:14:42 »
Hi there, I signed up just to reply that this case looks DOPE. There's not many 660c cases out there so please get this produced!

Offline hottrout

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #25 on: Fri, 15 January 2021, 06:38:06 »
Very interesting and good luck with this project.  I will think on it and quite possibly might buy.
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Offline mustardgreens

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  • Posts: 108
  • Location: Canada
Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #26 on: Mon, 18 January 2021, 13:08:03 »
Hi there, I signed up just to reply that this case looks DOPE. There's not many 660c cases out there so please get this produced!

Very interesting and good luck with this project.  I will think on it and quite possibly might buy.

Thank you so much.

I am working with an amazing local carpenter now to make a wrist rest prototype for those interested. Should have a wooden proto and a typing test in the next couple weeks. Ontario is on a government-mandated lockdown due to a new Covid strain, so nothing is happening at lightspeed right now.

Offline noorejji

  • Posts: 256
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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #27 on: Tue, 19 January 2021, 23:23:07 »
I gotta admit, I’m coming around to this board. And I didn’t realize how good that coffee ano looks, definitely a unique color in keyboards. I might just have to.
« Last Edit: Tue, 19 January 2021, 23:25:50 by noorejji »

Offline tacomn

  • Posts: 16
Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #28 on: Tue, 02 February 2021, 12:13:38 »
What is the front height? Want to see how much higher it is vs the stock fc660c.

Offline mustardgreens

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Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #29 on: Tue, 02 February 2021, 19:25:51 »
What is the front height? Want to see how much higher it is vs the stock fc660c.

According to my ruler, the front of the case sits at 22mm off the desk, versus 20mm off the desk for the stock case. Approximately.

But have a look yourself - here are a couple basic photos to give you an idea. Please forgive the glare and the empty case.



Ingot66 is a thicker housing but its base lies closer to the desk, unlike the stock case which has higher feet and a sharp lip underneath. Jeff spent a lot of time making sure it was as low as possible while still having the brass base substantial enough to contain the acrylic window.

In case you're not happy about the height difference, our wrist rest will be cut flush with the front of the board. But I think it's pretty darn close.

Offline rooski15

  • Posts: 130
Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #30 on: Wed, 03 February 2021, 01:35:12 »
I love the concept and am happy to see additional, premium Topre housings come to the market.

I understand your reasoning behind the window, but I just wanted to voice my own preference against it. It is a beautiful, impressive, and unique feature to include, but personally I see little added value. Green solder mask on a 50$ controller is of no appeal to me and doesn't project an ultra-premium feel. I'd rather that cost were reallocated to other, unique and exciting features. I'm happy to spend premium money on a premium case; this just isn't a premium feature to me.

I understand that making a windowed vs solid back is likely not an option, as you need the order quantity to keep prices down, but it is an option I would take if given the choice.

Again, I realize that's personal preference, and I totally appreciate you bringing the case to market. I will absolutely do my best to support the project, either way.

Cheers!

Offline JP911

  • Posts: 5
Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Prototype Photos)
« Reply #31 on: Thu, 04 February 2021, 15:34:55 »
Lots of feedback on the google forum guys thanks!

I understand that making a windowed vs solid back is likely not an option, as you need the order quantity to keep prices down, but it is an option I would take if given the choice.

Totally, I was also a bit torn because you can't really see it - almost like an easter egg. We both love the window design but we also understand that if we want to do a group buy we have to consider what others want too. Id want it on mine, since I'm a bit of a tech nerd and love the look of exposed circuits and such but to the point of view of someone else that might not resonate as much. Again, if we want to see a GB happen I think we gotta listen to what people want so if anyone else has opinions on this too, that would help us a lot in making design/manufacturing decisions!

I am going to ask my manufacture to see maybe if we can have an option to have the window or not cut out? I think its an isolated CNC operation so it could be a simple thing. Because it might save some time in the machining aspect of things too. We have received positive comments about the window as well so it's a case of trying to please everyone right now.

Also filmed a typing test last weekend! Ive been using this board for a solid month now. I love how much thuddier and solid it feels (a bit biased of course hah). I have average sized hands and found the typing height to be really nice.

0:38​ - Leopold Plastic Housing
1:55​ - Ingot66 Aluminum/Brass Housing


Offline yukitoki

  • Posts: 47
Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Typing Test)
« Reply #32 on: Wed, 17 March 2021, 10:04:20 »
I want a topre board please.  :thumb:

Offline wirru

  • Posts: 1
Re: [IC] PNPKey Ingot66: Premium Brass Case for FC660C (Typing Test)
« Reply #33 on: Fri, 19 March 2021, 10:51:08 »
Any updates on this? I'm definitely interested in the full brass version of this. My personal preference would also be for a "no window" version, but it wouldn't be a deal breaker to me. Thank you!