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geekhack Community => Keyboard Keycaps => Topic started by: Jamesbeat on Wed, 14 March 2012, 15:54:37

Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: Jamesbeat on Wed, 14 March 2012, 15:54:37
Anyone have a BBC Model B to hand, or a reliable memory of this machine?

I'm thinking of dyeing my keycaps to resemble the Model B, but I can't remember if the keycaps were black or very dark brown.

I know the function keys are orange and the arrow keys were a dark murky green, but what about the rest?
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: dirge on Wed, 14 March 2012, 16:41:08
Very very dark brown. I'm working with a few sets at the moment.  You can seem mod them. I.ve pictures on deskthority.
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: Jamesbeat on Wed, 14 March 2012, 16:54:35
Awesome, thanks :)
I'd be interested in seeing your project, do you have a link?
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: dirge on Wed, 14 March 2012, 17:23:17
Drop me a pm with email adduced and ill send some pics mate :)
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: captain on Wed, 14 March 2012, 18:40:29
Can you post them here, for all of us to enjoy, please?  Uploading pics to geekhack is easier than emailing!  ;-)
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: dirge on Wed, 21 March 2012, 13:24:50
Sorry for the late reply captain, I will do when I'm finished my stupid little project, and if it's not seen as a complete f-up.

Also had a friend get me the RAL codes for the BBC Micro or as close as he can get it, so I'll post those tomorrow when I have the postit note :)
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: dirge on Tue, 03 April 2012, 08:48:51
Dark brown keys:
RAL 8022
 
Red keys:
RAL 2009
or...
RAL 2005
 
Lighter brown keys 'copy key' etc:
RAL 8014
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: Daniel Beardsmore on Sat, 07 April 2012, 17:20:50
It would own if someone could make a set of red-orange function keys, preferably labelled ƒ through ƒ11 instead of F1 to F12. I don't know that I've seen any Cherry caps in that perfect shade of red-orange, but I have seen group buys with double-shot olive drab keys (like the arrows and copy). It would work best with a FILCO MX black keyboard – not only are they linear, but they have the red LEDs. (Never used MX black – the Beeb is the only linear keyboard I'm familiar with, and linear isn't really my thing; the tactile bump in MX browns is definitely subtle at speed, but it feels good.)

Never realised that the rest of the keys were dark brown, though – always looked black to me. Under intense torch light, though, they're clearly brown. However, you can't get the BBC look with dye, since they were, after all, double shots. You're better off going with black group buy double shots as that would give you the same rounded kiddy font.

What I do want is Archimedes A3010 blue-green function keys – need to be ALPS, so that I could use them on my Acer (ALPS-a-like), Tulip, or, more likely, my Tactile Pro 3 – all ALPS interface. There's on way in hell I'd ever get them in ALPS :( ALPS just gets no love any more.
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: mkeeley on Sat, 07 April 2012, 20:28:21
They say only series 1 BBC caps work, that's what I read anyway.
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: Daniel Beardsmore on Sun, 08 April 2012, 08:04:09
Quote from: mkeeley;570225
They say only series 1 BBC caps work, that's what I read anyway.

What do you mean by "work"? And what's series 1? You mean Issue 1?
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: mkeeley on Sun, 08 April 2012, 09:06:15
Quote from: Daniel Beardsmore;570522
What do you mean by "work"? And what's series 1? You mean Issue 1?


Can't remember how they officially referred to it issue/series/revision/edition 1 (not A or B),  apparently had Cherry key stems according to a post I read on Deskthority. Here's the post, nothing more was said:

"Just so people don't go out and waste money on BBC caps, only revision 1 of the micro, and the Master 128 had the cherry stems. (that I know of)

But they are all the same size, no staggered curve that modern keys provide...."
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: Daniel Beardsmore on Sun, 08 April 2012, 09:13:55
The BBC Micro was built by different companies around Britain and abroad (IIRC, Hong Kong sourced machines later on as well), and different switches got used – see Keyboards, Keyswitches and Keytops at 8bs (http://8bs.com/insides.htm#Keyswitches%20and%20Keytops) for the variants found on the Model A and Model B. My current machine (Issue 4) has "Type 1" switches, which have a "+" stem the same as Cherry, but they're not compatible – the stem is slightly too large for Cherry caps.

I believe the OP's aim was to dye existing caps, not to harvest them. I don't get how this would work, as they're white letter doubleshots, and you can't dye anything into that. For the main keys, just get a spherical doubleshot set from a group buy. It's getting the completely custom ƒ through ƒ11 white-on-flame-red doubleshot keys that will be harder.
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: dirge on Sun, 08 April 2012, 09:59:08
I.ve used a dremel to shave the mounts to fit. Works fine. Your BBC knowledge is second to none btw!
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: mkeeley on Sun, 08 April 2012, 10:05:40
I had one in the day, remember travelling for hours to a store that actually had a B in stock! It was an upgrade from my Dads Superboard II housed in a converted bread bin. Obviously didn't check things like sizes of stems though (I know, what a slacker). The tibit was just something I read that I thought might be useful, couldn't vouch for its accuracy.
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: Daniel Beardsmore on Sun, 08 April 2012, 10:35:52
I just checked my Issue 7 B – same "Type 1" not-quite-Cherry switches, must be what all the southeast machines came with. Switch type is not, so far as I know, related to motherboard/chipset issue, but I'm just going by what 8-bit Software say.

I did have an Issue 7 once with a completely different keyboard – sounded really great, nice and pingy, but the spacebar stabiliser was broken. I gave it away by mistake; I was going to fix that keyboard and use it.
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: dirge on Sun, 08 April 2012, 11:47:25
Full board
(http://i.imgur.com/lKyb1.jpg)

Arrow keys
(http://i.imgur.com/bs11o.jpg)

Numpad and Amstrad CPC 464 red doubleshot escape
(http://i.imgur.com/c0deY.jpg)

The red function keys
(http://i.imgur.com/EyfyF.jpg)

My part done re-legending experiment
(http://i.imgur.com/24D0U.jpg)
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: Daniel Beardsmore on Sun, 08 April 2012, 12:00:28
I take it that you must be British, as the German layout doesn't have above 3 …

The odd thing is that the it's not the thickness of the "arms" of the "+" in BBC keycaps that stops Cherry caps from fitting, it's the length, and the vertical "arms" are longer than the horizontal ones.

My ƒ also has the sprue mark on the front of the key … must have come from SP ;-)
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: dirge on Sun, 08 April 2012, 12:13:27
The pound sign wasn't above 3 I used a micro saw and files to create that key. Was a first attempt.
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: Daniel Beardsmore on Sun, 08 April 2012, 12:19:19
The keyboard layout is German. I presume from moving from /_ to 3, that you're British.
Title: BBC Micro keycap color?
Post by: dirge on Sun, 08 April 2012, 12:24:05
Yup. Messing around trying to create a full set. Should get cracking again soon.