Author Topic: swill's build log - Sprit PCBs  (Read 88912 times)

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Offline swill

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swill's build log - Sprit PCBs
« on: Fri, 30 May 2014, 22:35:20 »
UPDATE: I have started building my Sprit 75% board.  I learned a lot in the first build, so I will do a better build log this time.  Check progress at the end of this post...

I will try to keep the OP updated with pictures, so I am going to keep it light on text for the most part...

I am working with:
- Panavice with PCB holder and custom rail (from Melvang)
- Hakko FX-888D (with additional tips, so I have a very small chisel which worked fine for the SMDs)
- Kester 44 solder
- Kester flux pen
- Fine point angled tweezers

1st Build - Sprit 60%


Resistors are on!
 I have to admit, I was pretty intimidated when I first saw the size of the resistors, but it actually was not as hard as I was anticipating.  Having the right tools makes a HUGE difference.
66522-0 66524-1

Diodes are on!
I thought the diodes would be easier to solder on because they were bigger, but being cylindrical makes them kind of annoying.  The first side of the diode was actually more difficult than the resistors.  The second side was easy.  I actually went back and retouched some of the initial solder joints on the first side after the second pad was soldered on.
66718-2 66720-3

Switch Mods Finished!
This was a pretty long and tedious process, but the result is going to be epic.  :)  I stickered and lubed all the switches as well as re-springed with 68g Sprit gold springs.  I also added SIP sockets to each switch and inserted an LED so the soldering will be easier and the spacing for the LEDs will be perfect once soldered.  Tips for this section is do all the switches at one time and do one process at a time.  So something like this for all; open, sticker, sip sockets, lube springs, lube stems, close, add leds...
One other thing, that 3V battery is the best LED tester ever!!!
67597-4 67599-5 67601-6 67603-7

Switches Soldered & Case Built
This was actually two sessions, but I did not have a chance to take pictures after soldering.  You can basically see the soldering job in the pictures though.  My minimal case is now a reality!!!  This is the first prototype, so it is not perfect, but I am happy with the result.  I am using threaded inserts and male/female brass standoffs.  I will cut some silicon and do a setup with that as well, but as a first go, this is what I did.  I actually really like being able to flip over the keyboard and see all the guts, its pretty cool...  I have not put any feet on it of any kind yet.  I will stick some rubber bumpers on it some point soon.
68200-8 68202-9 68204-10

Minimal Case V2
Instead of just having brass standoffs between the PCB and the backplate, I got around to doing my original idea of putting a silicone layer between the two without any spacers.  In this case I wanted to make it as soft as possible, so instead of a solid silicone sheet, I used closed cell silicone foam.  It has a durometer of about 20A, so it is quite soft.  I am pretty happy with it.  It has a really nice typing feel.  I have a crap ton of the solid silicone sheets, so I will have to test that when I have some time.

70720-11 70722-12 70724-13


2nd Build - Sprit 75%


SMD Soldering
It definitely helps that I have done this once.  Now I have a much better system for this piece...
1) Put solder on one pad of each of the diodes and resistors. 
2) Tack the diodes and resistors in place with the initial solder.  When you push the SMD component into the 'puddle', the SMD will resist and deform the solder initially.  Once your iron has warmed the SMD enough, the solder will kind of suck up onto the SMD.  At this point you can remove the iron and wait a second or two before releasing it with your tweezers.
3) Solder the second side of the diodes and resistors.  Touch up any joints you feel need it...

70199-14 70201-15 70203-16

Yes, some of my solder joints have too much solder, but I was just rocking through it so I errored on the side of too much...

Switch Stickering
Nothing too special in this update.  This was a relatively short session, so I just put the switches on a universal TKL plate (my version of a lube station) and opened them all up and stickered them. 

My only advice when modding switches is do all the switches at the same time for each step.  This reduces the amount of time you spend switching between tools and doing unproductive actions.  I find this really speeds up the whole process.

70330-17

Since this is going to be my own personal board, I made sure to use these awesome pink stickers.   :thumb:

SIP Socketing
Inserted all of the sip sockets after I got all the stickers on.  I have not had much time recently, so I have been spending about an hour a night getting through what I can, so it has been slow.

My only tip for putting in sip sockets is to use a pointy pair of tweezers and stick one point into the sip socket and then place it.  It makes it super easy to control those tiny little pieces...

70429-18 70431-19

Switch Modding
Here are the steps I took when putting my switches back together.
1) Dip the top end of the spring in lube (grease/oil mixture) and place in bottom of housing.
2) Lube the sliders and the stem and insert into the spring.
3) Close the switch with the cover.
4) Spread the SIP sockets (wider than you think) with tweezers and then insert the LEDs.

70712-20 70714-21 70716-22 70718-23

All Soldered Up
Nothing too special here.  All the hard work was done, it was just the soldering everything up in this step.

73283-24 73285-25

Rocking a SUPER minimal case
In this version I simply tapped screw holes in acrylic.  Stuck some bumpers on and screwed it on.  Since the acrylic is not conductive and the components are all pretty similar in height, I figured I would give this a go.  It worked out pretty well.  It would probably be a bit better with a really thin layer of silicon, but I wanted to try it to see how minimal I could go.  Still feels good though...

73287-26 73289-27

The Final Form
Here it is with a couple different keysets on it.  I have to say that the Penumbra set is still rocking out all my favorite boards.  Love this keyset...

73291-28 73293-29

75% Summary
This was the layout I was most excited for.  I think this is going to be competing to take the job of my Filco w/ Browns which has been rocking as my daily driver at home for over 2 years.  I have been hard pressed to replace that board with something.  I think this 75% with 62g clears is going to give it a run for its money.  So far, this board is everything I hoped it would be.  It is a great size, fully functional and buttery to type on.  I will report back when I have a 100 hours or so on it...

« Last Edit: Sun, 21 December 2014, 14:25:16 by swill »

Offline infiniti

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #1 on: Fri, 30 May 2014, 23:45:23 »
Nice clean work! :thumb:

Offline kakakowie

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #2 on: Sat, 31 May 2014, 05:48:26 »
Looking forward to this thread. Looks detailed.

Just curious, what wattage do you solder with?

Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #3 on: Sat, 31 May 2014, 06:25:45 »
@infiniti: Thx. I think a couple of my smd solder joints have too much solder (convex bubble), but all in all, I am happy with the solder job.

@kakakowie: The FX-888D is a 70W soldering station and I was using a temperature of 690 F. I have tried other temperatures, but this temp feels right with this station.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #4 on: Sat, 31 May 2014, 07:04:36 »
@infiniti: Thx. I think a couple of my smd solder joints have too much solder (convex bubble), but all in all, I am happy with the solder job.

As do mine. :)) They're so tiny I think we're forgiven. :cool:

Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #5 on: Sun, 01 June 2014, 21:28:49 »
OP updated with progress...

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #6 on: Sun, 01 June 2014, 21:51:13 »
round diodes are way cheaper than (say) the diodes inc. ones that massdrop got for the ergodox, but they are significantly harder to solder because (in the words of one GHer) "they rollin"
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Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #7 on: Sun, 01 June 2014, 22:28:21 »
round diodes are way cheaper than (say) the diodes inc. ones that massdrop got for the ergodox, but they are significantly harder to solder because (in the words of one GHer) "they rollin"

Ya, it took some very careful tweezering to get good first pad solders.  When I do my next board I will know that all I have to do on the first pass is to just get them stuck there.  Once they are stuck, the second pad is really easy to solder, so then I will come back and reflow all the first solders.  I think that will actually save me time in the long run because 80% of my time with the diodes was on the first pad.  The second pad took no time at all.

Offline nereme

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #8 on: Mon, 02 June 2014, 07:23:55 »
Ooo I am glad to have found this thread, Have been eye'ing up a spirit for a little bit in all honesty, But i would most likely get one with the SMD stuff already done

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #9 on: Mon, 02 June 2014, 11:33:19 »
round diodes are way cheaper than (say) the diodes inc. ones that massdrop got for the ergodox, but they are significantly harder to solder because (in the words of one GHer) "they rollin"
Yes!  Absolutely Right!   ;)  The round Diodes may look better,  harder to solder.   

Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #10 on: Mon, 02 June 2014, 20:21:04 »
round diodes are way cheaper than (say) the diodes inc. ones that massdrop got for the ergodox, but they are significantly harder to solder because (in the words of one GHer) "they rollin"
Yes!  Absolutely Right!   ;)  The round Diodes may look better,  harder to solder.   

I don't want people to get the wrong idea about this, so I am going to clarify a few things...

It is not that it is super difficult to solder these on, it is more that it is harder than you expect when looking at them.  Because of their size and the size of the surfaces you are soldering, it looks like it is going to be very easy.  I think the main reason it is difficult is because we have an expectation when we sit down to do it and that expectation is not what we experience. 

These are actually very easy IF you step back and don't try to solve the problem head on.  Here are the tricks that I have learned when working with these that I will use on my next build.  With these tips you will realize that these are no harder than the resistors (maybe even easier).

Just a quick summary of how to do SMD soldering for people who are very new to this:
- Flux at least one pad
- Put a small amount of solder on your iron and touch it to the pad to transfer it
- Repeat for one side of all of your pads
- Re-flux all the pads you just added solder to
- Reflow the solder on the pad and slide diode onto the pad
- Repeat for all diodes to result in one pad soldered for each diode
- Flux the pad and exposed end of the diode for all the diodes (I use a flux pen)
- Heat the end of the diode and the pad at the same time and touch the solder to the triangle made by the end of the diode, the pad and the iron.  This solder joint is SUPER easy to do.
- Repeat for all of the second pads

When I started on these, I was too focused on creating the perfect solder joint on my first pass.  This proved to be very challenging and this is why I found this process so difficult.  It was not until I soldered the second pad on all the diodes that I realize my mistake.  I was too focused on trying to create a perfect solder joint on the first pass, but that turned out to be irrelevant.  All the first joint has to accomplish is to make sure the diode is in position and solidly stuck to the PCB.  Once it is in place it is super easy to do the second joint.  By the same principle, once the second joint was finished, the first joint was super easy to reflow and make perfect.

So the trick when working with these diodes is:
- Just get the diode to stick on the first pad and sit in the correct spot
- Solder the second pad on all the diodes
- Resolder all of the first pads to make them perfect

Had I known this trick, it would have taken me half the time to solder up the diodes on this board.  Hopefully this trick will save many people the frustration of working with these 'rollin' diodes...  :)  GL HF...
« Last Edit: Mon, 02 June 2014, 20:26:07 by swill »

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #11 on: Mon, 02 June 2014, 21:52:56 »
pre tinning one of the pads for smd makes it significantly easier.
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Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #12 on: Mon, 02 June 2014, 21:55:56 »
pre tinning one of the pads for smd makes it significantly easier.

ya for sure.  that is a must...  remember to flux after tinning the pads too.  that will help the solder flow onto the smd when you push it into the solder puddle.

Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #13 on: Tue, 10 June 2014, 22:43:57 »
Spring mods are done!  its a long and tedious process, but I am really happy with the result...

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #14 on: Wed, 11 June 2014, 00:33:28 »
Did you have to modify the switch housings to accommodate the sip sockets? Or is it unnecessary as it seems you have removed the black plastic surrounding the sockets?

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #15 on: Wed, 11 June 2014, 08:46:36 »
Did you have to modify the switch housings to accommodate the sip sockets? Or is it unnecessary as it seems you have removed the black plastic surrounding the sockets?

No mod to the switch housing is needed because I removed the whole housing. It was easier to remove the whole housing with end cutters than it is to shave the housing to fit.

NOTE: if you remove the whole housing it is important that you put LEDS in the sip sockets before you solder them to the PCB. If you don't you will never get the LEDS in because the spacing will not be perfect.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #16 on: Wed, 11 June 2014, 13:56:53 »
That's a really interesting build log, I can't wait to see the end result.

What is this PCB vise you're using ? It looks really useful, I should really get one.

Pure Pro w/MX Red - [review]

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #17 on: Wed, 11 June 2014, 15:09:55 »
That's a really interesting build log, I can't wait to see the end result.

What is this PCB vise you're using ? It looks really useful, I should really get one.

This is the GeekHack Panavise which is no longer available with a custom PCB rail.  You can get 'basically' the same thing with one of these two products...
http://www.panavise.com/index.html?pageID=1&page=full&--eqskudatarq=3
or
http://www.panavise.com/index.html?pageID=1&page=full&--eqskudatarq=26

Keep in mind that you may need to buy a longer rail if you plan to work on keyboards.  Mine is 16" long which is the absolute smallest you can go if you want to do a TKL.  You would need to get this replacement rail if you wanted to do TKL keyboards and larger if you want to do a 110%.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #18 on: Wed, 11 June 2014, 15:52:47 »
Thank you, this will certainly be helpful.

Pure Pro w/MX Red - [review]

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #19 on: Thu, 12 June 2014, 17:25:20 »
What layout are you going to have: HHKB?

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #20 on: Thu, 12 June 2014, 17:44:21 »
What layout are you going to have: HHKB?

Going to do a ANSI Pure layout with this board.  I can always change it if I want later.  :)

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #21 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 13:52:06 »
What layout are you going to have: HHKB?

Going to do a ANSI Pure layout with this board.  I can always change it if I want later.  :)

While the pure layout is nice for someone in need of arrows, I'd prefer the HHKB. Of course, in your project, as you said, you can try as many layouts as you want.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #22 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 13:56:49 »
What layout are you going to have: HHKB?

Going to do a ANSI Pure layout with this board.  I can always change it if I want later.  :)

While the pure layout is nice for someone in need of arrows, I'd prefer the HHKB. Of course, in your project, as you said, you can try as many layouts as you want.

Only difference between HHKB layout and Pure layout is the split backspace on the HHKB. No one means the "Pure Pro" when they talk about "Pure" layout. :)

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #23 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 15:19:08 »
I am going with the standard ANSI layout, with the only change being the right shift will be a short right shift + Fn key.  Otherwise it is the standard ANSI layout.  I call it the 'pure' layout, but I could be calling it that incorrectly...

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #24 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 18:15:20 »
No, you are correct in calling it the "Pure" layout. That's the layout that the original KBT Pure keyboard had. That abomination that Vortex calls the Pure Pro only sullies the Pure brand, and had nothing to do with the layout we refer to as "Pure" layout.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #25 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 18:22:06 »
Damn swill that's awesome!

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #26 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 18:32:05 »
Great work! Really nice project.
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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #27 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 18:47:03 »
Will you be using your own case swill? Or did you get a case from sprit? I'm keen to seen more completed sprit units.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #28 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 18:49:44 »
No, you are correct in calling it the "Pure" layout. That's the layout that the original KBT Pure keyboard had. That abomination that Vortex calls the Pure Pro only sullies the Pure brand, and had nothing to do with the layout we refer to as "Pure" layout.

Right. Does any one has experience with the Face U, that predates this Face W 'Sprit's'?

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #29 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 18:58:23 »
that pcb stand/holder is badass.

I also use the disc battery to test leds too!

and awesome work so far.




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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #30 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 20:15:17 »
Will you be using your own case swill? Or did you get a case from sprit? I'm keen to seen more completed sprit units.

I will be prototyping my case with this board. I did not buy a sprit case.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #31 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 20:16:41 »
No, you are correct in calling it the "Pure" layout. That's the layout that the original KBT Pure keyboard had. That abomination that Vortex calls the Pure Pro only sullies the Pure brand, and had nothing to do with the layout we refer to as "Pure" layout.

Right. Does any one has experience with the Face U, that predates this Face W 'Sprit's'?

I don't have any experience with it. Sorry.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #32 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 20:19:58 »
that pcb stand/holder is badass.

I also use the disc battery to test leds too!

and awesome work so far.

Yes this stand is totally awesome. It is a must have if you build a lot of boards IMO.

Yes, the battery is such a perfect LED tester and it's so simple to use everyone should have one.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #33 on: Fri, 13 June 2014, 20:21:50 »
Thanks for all the kind words, I have been really enjoying this build. It's a good thing too cause I have 3 more to build (well 1 till the GH60 boards ship).

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #34 on: Mon, 16 June 2014, 22:51:53 »
Switches soldered on and the first prototype of my minimal case is built.  Woot!!!  :P

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #35 on: Thu, 19 June 2014, 09:01:18 »
Does the PCB support PCB-mounted Cherry stabilizers?

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #36 on: Thu, 19 June 2014, 09:12:29 »
Does the PCB support PCB-mounted Cherry stabilizers?

Yes it does.  That is what is on it right now.  Sprit's plates (the acrylic anyway) do not support plate mounted stabilizers, so PCB mount is the only option if you are using one of his acrylic plates.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #37 on: Thu, 19 June 2014, 09:34:20 »
Does the PCB support PCB-mounted Cherry stabilizers?

Yes it does.  That is what is on it right now.  Sprit's plates (the acrylic anyway) do not support plate mounted stabilizers, so PCB mount is the only option if you are using one of his acrylic plates.

Thank you for the info.

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #38 on: Tue, 24 June 2014, 03:50:52 »
Hi!  Swill   ;)
Nice Case!!   How do you feel on the Your 8mm Acrylic Bottom Case?   
and One question :  2mm or, 3mm bolts?   3mm bolts have some advantages (they will stay between Switches, no worry to lose, and stronger moreover, IMO)

http://geekhack.org/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=58969.0;attach=68200;image
http://geekhack.org/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=58969.0;attach=68202;image

* Thick Plates (3~5mm) have to stick on PCB-mount Stabilizers,  unless there is a more precision machining around stabs.   But any good solution?  ;)
« Last Edit: Tue, 24 June 2014, 04:10:41 by sprit »

Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #39 on: Wed, 25 June 2014, 23:48:19 »
Hi!  Swill   ;)
Nice Case!!   How do you feel on the Your 8mm Acrylic Bottom Case?   
and One question :  2mm or, 3mm bolts?   3mm bolts have some advantages (they will stay between Switches, no worry to lose, and stronger moreover, IMO)

http://geekhack.org/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=58969.0;attach=68200;image
http://geekhack.org/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=58969.0;attach=68202;image

* Thick Plates (3~5mm) have to stick on PCB-mount Stabilizers,  unless there is a more precision machining around stabs.   But any good solution?  ;)

Sorry for the delay getting back to you.  I am pretty happy with the case.  I am currently using a 5mm acrylic as the back plate and i will probably knock that down to a 3mm acrylic back plate.  I have not had much time to type on it yet cause I have not flashed it yet with a firmware (been really busy and haven't taken the time to figure out how this firmware works yet).

Not sure what would be a better solution for the PCB mount stabs with a 5mm acrylic plate.  because of the wire, I don't think you are going to be able to plate mount the switch unless you cut out half the thickness of the acrylic for the wire to go.  Basically, along the wire it would be half the thickness, so the acrylic would overhang the wire.  This would allow the acrylic to actually sit flush against the top and the bottom of the switch making it plate mounted.

Thats the best idea I have for you.  If I am not clear, I will try to ASCII draw it for you...


----  swi  --------...
|  |  tch  |___
|  |           |
---- wire -> o ----...


Not sure if that makes it clearer.  Haha...  basically, that is the side view of a switch that has a stabilizer.  That is the opening and the wire is the 'o'.  Notice how the wire is under the overhang?

Offline LechnerDE

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #40 on: Sat, 28 June 2014, 04:41:24 »
Thanks for the build log  :thumb:

I will comeback to this thread when I'll build mine :)

Offline kakakowie

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #41 on: Thu, 03 July 2014, 22:43:52 »
Did you have problems closing the switch covers with the sip sockets?

I tried them with mine and it seems one corner of the switch never seems to be able to close fully.

Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #42 on: Thu, 03 July 2014, 23:18:33 »
Did you have problems closing the switch covers with the sip sockets?

I tried them with mine and it seems one corner of the switch never seems to be able to close fully.

No, I did not have any problems with that.  I have heard other people mention that as well.  Did you completely remove the housing?  I tried just shaving the housing down originally and that did not work at all.  I could not get the switch to close.  I completely removed the housing and the switch top clips on perfectly. 

If you use sip sockets and you remove the entire house be sure to put leds in the sip sockets before you solder them on, otherwise they will not be lined up perfectly and you will drive yourself nuts. 

Offline Cottonsox

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #43 on: Fri, 04 July 2014, 00:43:22 »
Did you have problems closing the switch covers with the sip sockets?

I tried them with mine and it seems one corner of the switch never seems to be able to close fully.

I found that  if the tops of the sip sockets were sitting to far back it would not close properly, as I close them I just nudge the pins at the bottom towards the back of the key and it sits flush.

I imagine swill may not have encountered this as his setup would cause thrle sockets to rest on the front of the switch.  I have been doing mine on a flat surface.

Offline kakakowie

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #44 on: Fri, 04 July 2014, 07:26:00 »
I found that  if the tops of the sip sockets were sitting to far back it would not close properly, as I close them I just nudge the pins at the bottom towards the back of the key and it sits flush.

I imagine swill may not have encountered this as his setup would cause thrle sockets to rest on the front of the switch.  I have been doing mine on a flat surface.

Ah that made sense. I noticed there is a little ridge on the bottom of the switch cover. However, no matter what i do I just couldn't nudge the pins - I had to attach the led to the sockets on the switch cover before carefully aligning everything together.

Offline dorkvader

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #45 on: Fri, 04 July 2014, 07:45:34 »
If you use sip sockets and you remove the entire house be sure to put leds in the sip sockets before you solder them on, otherwise they will not be lined up perfectly and you will drive yourself nuts. 
Words of wisdom here: I can speak from experience that I did this and am now nuts.
IBM nut and bolt mod guide Keyboard Photos "I sort of want to have 1/4 of a grand staircase connecting two halves of a split level"
I am happy to answer honest PMs from concerned parties

Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #46 on: Fri, 04 July 2014, 09:52:13 »
I found that  if the tops of the sip sockets were sitting to far back it would not close properly, as I close them I just nudge the pins at the bottom towards the back of the key and it sits flush.

I imagine swill may not have encountered this as his setup would cause thrle sockets to rest on the front of the switch.  I have been doing mine on a flat surface.

Ah that made sense. I noticed there is a little ridge on the bottom of the switch cover. However, no matter what i do I just couldn't nudge the pins - I had to attach the led to the sockets on the switch cover before carefully aligning everything together.

I have some pointy tweezers that I used to help align the sip sockets when I put on the cover. I did not have trouble closing the switch, but putting the initial leds in is a little bit of a challenge. What I ended up doing was close the switch, then I would stick the pointy tweezers into the sip sockets through the top cover and move them to line up where I wanted them, then put in the led. With a little bit of trial and error I got pretty good at eye balling the correct spacing and location so the leds were easier to put in. 

You will probably struggle for the first 1/2 of the board till you find a good system and then it will go smoothly.

I also found that using a flat metal surface like the tip of a flat head screw driver really helped install the initial leds. The socket is almost never perfectly aligned initially, so you have to apply quite a bit of pressure to get everything to line up and go together. My thumb got sore after like 5, so I found something else to use.
« Last Edit: Fri, 04 July 2014, 09:55:57 by swill »

Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - sprit 60%
« Reply #47 on: Fri, 04 July 2014, 09:54:02 »
If you use sip sockets and you remove the entire house be sure to put leds in the sip sockets before you solder them on, otherwise they will not be lined up perfectly and you will drive yourself nuts. 
Words of wisdom here: I can speak from experience that I did this and am now nuts.

Ya. I did not make this mistake, but once I started putting in the leds I realized how important this was going to be.

Offline swill

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Re: swill's build log - Sprit PCBs
« Reply #48 on: Tue, 08 July 2014, 23:17:54 »
Started working on my 75%, so I updated the OP...

Offline geniekid

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Re: swill's build log - Sprit PCBs
« Reply #49 on: Wed, 09 July 2014, 14:30:56 »
I found this thread helpful when doing SMD soldering for my ErgoDox. :thumb: