Author Topic: NIB Japanese IBM "Pingmasters" back online, $24.95+shipping  (Read 1677 times)

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Offline ander

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NIB Japanese IBM "Pingmasters" back online, $24.95+shipping
« on: Thu, 14 September 2017, 04:01:59 »
Mendelsons Surplus has re-listed, on their website, the Japanese version (p/n 6112883) of the vintage IBM "Pingmaster":

NIB IBM Japanese Lettering Typing Computer 102 Keyboard Letter Type 6112883


178315-0


Though they continue to sell the Chinese version (p/n 6113442 ) here on eBay, most of us assumed the Japanese version sold out some time ago. This should be good news to several GH peeps who were sorry they'd missed them.

These are unused, high-quality vintage IBM mechanical keyboards sealed in their original boxes. They have double-shot SA keys (not seen since IBM's early beam spring boards), rare "T-mount" Alps SKCC Green switches, and many custom-legendable keys with transparent covers. It seems likely they were designed for financial institutions, as they closely resemble IBM's Model F banking boards.

GH members have dubbed these "Pingmasters" because of the unique "musical" sound produced by their unusual switches and heavy metal plates.

There are several threads about them here on GH, and Chyros did this swell video review.

Note that these have a non-standard connector and protocol—so to use them with a modern PC, you'll need to add and program an inexpensive Teensy converter, which anyone with basic electronics skills should be able to do; details here and here.

At just $24.95 plus shipping, it's a pretty remarkable chance to own an obscure piece of IBM history.
« Last Edit: Sat, 23 September 2017, 20:00:41 by ander »
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Offline OldIsNew

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Re: NIB Japanese IBM "Pingmasters" back online, $24.95 + shipping
« Reply #1 on: Thu, 14 September 2017, 14:04:55 »
Thanks for posting! I have one of the Chinese version boards and like it, but really had wanted the Japanese version - I really like those keys.


EDIT: Wow it looks like those went fast!
« Last Edit: Thu, 14 September 2017, 14:09:28 by OldIsNew »

Offline mogo

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Re: NIB Japanese IBM "Pingmasters" back online, $24.95 + shipping
« Reply #2 on: Thu, 14 September 2017, 14:29:18 »
Crap. This is too fascinating, sounds too pleasant to type on, and I love genuine classic SA. Worst of all is that I can afford it. My boyfriend is going to kill me for adding another to the collection. D:

Offline ander

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Re: NIB Japanese IBM "Pingmasters" back online, $24.95 + shipping
« Reply #3 on: Mon, 18 September 2017, 01:51:23 »
Crap. This is too fascinating, sounds too pleasant to type on, and I love genuine classic SA. Worst of all is that I can afford it. My boyfriend is going to kill me for adding another to the collection. D:

In this case, it really is too cool, unusual and cheap to pass up, IMHO. Besides, the Japanese Pingmasters are the only keebs in the known universe with a "000" key.  :?)
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Re: NIB Japanese IBM "Pingmasters" back online, $24.95 + shipping
« Reply #4 on: Mon, 18 September 2017, 09:01:12 »
Crap. This is too fascinating, sounds too pleasant to type on, and I love genuine classic SA. Worst of all is that I can afford it. My boyfriend is going to kill me for adding another to the collection. D:

In this case, it really is too cool, unusual and cheap to pass up, IMHO. Besides, the Japanese Pingmasters are the only keebs in the known universe with a "000" key.  :?)
Nah, 000 keys are pretty normal on Japanese keyboards. Even the BFK had one ;) .
Check my keyboard video reviews:


Offline OldIsNew

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Re: NIB Japanese IBM "Pingmasters" back online, $24.95 + shipping
« Reply #5 on: Mon, 18 September 2017, 20:20:59 »
I don't know if this has happened to anyone else. I received my order today including an invoice for "IBM Japanese Lettering" Model 6112883 but received the Chinese 6113442. I'm sure at this point I'll be told the Japanese version is out of stock. We'll see what they say. Oh well.

Online aspenc4

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Re: NIB Japanese IBM "Pingmasters" back online, $24.95 + shipping
« Reply #6 on: Tue, 19 September 2017, 01:47:07 »
I don't know if this has happened to anyone else. I received my order today including an invoice for "IBM Japanese Lettering" Model 6112883 but received the Chinese 6113442. I'm sure at this point I'll be told the Japanese version is out of stock. We'll see what they say. Oh well.

 Mine arrived today as well, but hadn't had a chance to take a look until now. Same issue, mines packaged in the 6113442 box with a part# of 6341739


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Offline ander

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Re: NIB Japanese IBM "Pingmasters" back online, $24.95 + shipping
« Reply #7 on: Wed, 20 September 2017, 17:56:52 »
Nah, 000 keys are pretty normal on Japanese keyboards. Even the BFK had one ;) .

Thanks for pointing that out... Shows you how much I know.


I don't know if this has happened to anyone else. I received my order today including an invoice for "IBM Japanese Lettering" Model 6112883 but received the Chinese 6113442. I'm sure at this point I'll be told the Japanese version is out of stock. We'll see what they say...

Oh, man!! They have the Chinese boards listed here separately, but of course someone there may be neglecting to notice the difference and is sending out Chinese boards to fulfill Japanese orders. If so, I'm sure sorry for the confusion.

That said, if you do get another Chinese board, you could always convert it to a Kishsaver like Dorkvader did.  ;?)
« Last Edit: Wed, 20 September 2017, 17:58:39 by ander »
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Offline OldIsNew

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Oh, man!! They have the Chinese boards listed here separately, but of course someone there may be neglecting to notice the difference and is sending out Chinese boards to fulfill Japanese orders. If so, I'm sure sorry for the confusion.

That said, if you do get another Chinese board, you could always convert it to a Kishsaver like Dorkvader did.  ;?)


Thank you for the sympathy, however I now have to give major props to Mendelson's.  As I posted earlier I received the the Chinese instead of the Japanese board. I emailed Mendelson's and they were very quick to respond, apologized for the mix up, and shipped the the correct board the same day. It arrived and it's the right one! I can see how easy it would be to mix them up - the boxes are identical except for the printed sticker on one end. No bar codes on those old boxes. I do like to acknowledge good customer service, since it seems to be so rare these days!


EDIT: I hadn't seen dorkvader's pingsaver mod before - that is seriously awesome!
« Last Edit: Thu, 21 September 2017, 20:36:06 by OldIsNew »

Offline ander

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...I now have to give major props to Mendelson's.  As I posted earlier I received the the Chinese instead of the Japanese board. I emailed Mendelson's and they were very quick to respond, apologized for the mix up, and shipped the the correct board the same day. It arrived and it's the right one!...

So they do have more of them—great! I can now de-vague-ify my thread's subject.


EDIT: I hadn't seen dorkvader's pingsaver mod before - that is seriously awesome!

Yeah, don't they look great? Between these boards's rareness and that outrageous mod, it's a head-turner all right.
Amazing but true: Government policy makers get more of their information from keyboard-forum sigs than anywhere else!