Author Topic: Fast-action MX Blues mod  (Read 7593 times)

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Offline khaangaaroo

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Fast-action MX Blues mod
« on: Tue, 12 February 2013, 00:16:50 »
I got the inspiration for this mod here: http://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=19844.0

I'm not sure if anyone has made a full keyboard with these modified stems before, but I spent a good part of my day doing it, and I think they feel great. I basically cut strips of plastic and used them as spacers to lock the white part of the stem at the lowest point.

What this does
- Moves the actuation point closer to the top
- Removes the clicky sound
- Increases resistance, because the spring will be more compressed. (Not as heavy as blacks though)
- Reduces overall travel
- Reduces clack sound from bottoming out. (I think because it's landing on the white piece before it bottoms out)

How it feels
To me, it feels most like a smoother, more refined green alps switch. For those that haven't tried green alps, I don't know how else to describe it. Having the actuation bump at the very top makes it feel completely different than any other existing Cherry switch. The closest thing I can think of to compare it to is mx clears, but with an even (perceptually) larger tactile bump (because it's at the top, you can't plow through it.) And also o-ring modded, because of the reduced travel and bottoming out noise.

What to look out for
So for anyone who decides this might be something they'd want to try, I have a few tips. Getting the plastic pieces cut to the right thickness is very hard. I cut most of the pieces so that they're slightly tapered. Then I slid them in until they fit just well though to remove any wiggle in the white part of the stem. Anything too thin, and the stem will not feel solid, and the key might still make a click sound. Anything too thick, it puts a bend in the white part of the stem, making it push outward into the housing, and the switch will feel sticky. There was a lot of trial and error before I got the spacing pieces right. The gap between the two pieces is about 1.25mm.

How I did it

Cut some strips


Slid them in between the two pieces of the stem.


Chopped off the excess with a razor blade.


Compared to a stock blue stem.
« Last Edit: Tue, 12 February 2013, 00:22:03 by khaangaaroo »

Offline WhiteFireDragon

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #1 on: Tue, 12 February 2013, 00:25:38 »
Lesliann did exactly the same thing, and I verified it too. The only difference is that we wrapped a wire around. She called it "jailhouse blues." Great idea and mod though. Maybe your approach looks less time consuming.

http://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=38091.0
« Last Edit: Tue, 12 February 2013, 09:55:00 by WhiteFireDragon »

Offline khaangaaroo

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #2 on: Tue, 12 February 2013, 00:41:20 »
Lesliann did exactly the same thing, and I verified it too. The only difference is that we wrapped a wire around. She called it "jailhouse blues." Great idea and mod though. Maybe your approach looks less time consuming.

http://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=38091.0

Haha, I should check the making stuff subforum more often.

I'm glad you two did the same thing and got a similar typing experience. Maybe more people will try it out, and it will catch on. The great thing about this mod is that you don't need any stems or springs from another switch type. Just the regular cheapo mx blues and you're good to go. Oh, and a lot of spare time too.

Offline sth

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #3 on: Tue, 12 February 2013, 00:48:39 »
this looks awesome. i'll have to try it with my numpad sometime.
11:48 -!- SmallFry [~SmallFry@unaffiliated/smallfry] has quit [Ping timeout: 245 seconds] ... rest in peace

Offline hashbaz

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #4 on: Tue, 12 February 2013, 00:55:43 »
Nice, I actually like green Alps quite a lot.  Will give this a shot.  Too bad it necessarily removes the extra click.

Offline khaangaaroo

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #5 on: Tue, 12 February 2013, 01:16:04 »
Nice, I actually like green Alps quite a lot.  Will give this a shot.  Too bad it necessarily removes the extra click.

If you make the spacers a little bit on the thin side, you can probably get all of them to keep their click. I was having a little trouble getting to sound/feel consistent on my first few tries, so I just aimed for a slug fit which removed the click. But I'm sure it can be done to keep the click.

Offline danielucf

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #6 on: Tue, 12 February 2013, 07:35:07 »
How do you think this switch modification would hold up for gaming? Higher actuation point could be both good and bad depending on the type of game.
VE.A 67g Zealios | GH60 MX Clears |

Offline khaangaaroo

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #7 on: Sat, 16 February 2013, 01:05:06 »
How do you think this switch modification would hold up for gaming? Higher actuation point could be both good and bad depending on the type of game.

I let my brother try it for a few days, and he plays lots of all different types of games. He says he likes it better than all the previous boards I let him try. He can't really explain why though...haha.

I prefer linear switches for gaming, but I only play FPS games. I feel like I can spam them faster than these modified blues, but it might just be a subconscious thing.

If you're asking about how they would hold up over time, I think they'd be ok. The plastic spacers are wedged in pretty good, and the switch housing surrounds it when you put it back together, so there's no chance of it sliding out. But really, only time will tell if they loosen up for feel different later on.

Offline S2000Gan

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #8 on: Wed, 27 February 2013, 22:59:38 »
So this pretty much turns them into browns?

Offline khaangaaroo

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #9 on: Wed, 27 February 2013, 23:04:24 »
Stiffer than browns, and higher actuation point. Doesn't really feel like browns or blues anymore. Closer to ergo clears maybe.

Offline khaangaaroo

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #10 on: Wed, 27 February 2013, 23:04:54 »
EDIT: oops. double post

Offline tp4tissue

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #11 on: Thu, 28 February 2013, 05:14:30 »
You guys seriously cut 100s of tiny piece of plastic card for this???? :D

Mad props for dedication..

But a dab of super or gorilla w/ a precision applicator tip is MUCH faster.

Offline MGH

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #12 on: Sat, 03 January 2015, 03:12:56 »
After doing this for one switch, I can say its super quiet :eek:

Its quieter than all the switches, even the matias quiet switch.

There are some cons to it:

Making it: Holy crap this is a tedious process. Cutting down the plastic to the right thickness (its way thinner than it looks) is a huge pain.

Spring: Spring force feels more, but just slightly. Putting a 62g spring in it was way too much IMO.

The bump is close to or greater than the bump on clears. I'll probably make a board for on the go with these.

Offline khaangaaroo

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #13 on: Sat, 03 January 2015, 09:38:12 »
Holy thread resurrection...haha. Thanks for the trip down memory lane :)

If you're still doing research on making these switches, Photoelectric made a centralized thread linking to lots of different discussion: https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=45992.5

If you want to just buy them pre-made by someone, Berserkfan has a set for sale: https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=62920.0


Offline MGH

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Re: Fast-action MX Blues mod
« Reply #14 on: Sat, 03 January 2015, 17:40:40 »
Holy thread resurrection...haha. Thanks for the trip down memory lane :)

If you're still doing research on making these switches, Photoelectric made a centralized thread linking to lots of different discussion: https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=45992.5

If you want to just buy them pre-made by someone, Berserkfan has a set for sale: https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=62920.0
Dam I wish I saw those threads before I did all this reseach  :-X