Author Topic: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project  (Read 44840 times)

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Offline bazemk1979

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #150 on: Sat, 29 June 2013, 20:57:21 »
Seems like if you go with Aluminum tray(not the top cover) + switches+PCB+plate would end up around 220-230 shipped? that's not bad at all, now if this GB has only 10-15 peeps in it, we are going to feel the steel rod when we have GB from SP for keycaps bwahaha
Quote from: IvanIvanovich on Wed, 08 January 2014, 18:02:50

When you bottom out dong cap... is it going balls deep?

Offline alaricljs

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #151 on: Sun, 30 June 2013, 12:47:13 »
Sorry I'm a total noob when it comes to custom keyboards and design considerations, but has anyone ever tried to source standard cases from a manufacturer before?

I attempted to do this via Costar and they wanted nothing to do with it.  I'm impressed CM swung the case tops, but it helps to have a high volume relationship already.
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Offline Techno Trousers

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #152 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 14:32:28 »
Sorry I'm a total noob when it comes to custom keyboards and design considerations, but has anyone ever tried to source standard cases from a manufacturer before?

I attempted to do this via Costar and they wanted nothing to do with it.  I'm impressed CM swung the case tops, but it helps to have a high volume relationship already.

Yeah, that's why I'm thinking it would make sense to approach CM directly. The markup would be higher since they are an intermediary with Costar, but even with markup it should be significantly less than the other options. I guess I'm just thinking I'd rather sink my money into the plate and switches, which would make the most difference in overall feel. Easy for me to say though when I'm not doing any work. Heh.

Offline Photekq

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #153 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 14:37:22 »
Yeah, that's why I'm thinking it would make sense to approach CM directly. The markup would be higher since they are an intermediary with Costar, but even with markup it should be significantly less than the other options. I guess I'm just thinking I'd rather sink my money into the plate and switches, which would make the most difference in overall feel. Easy for me to say though when I'm not doing any work. Heh.
There's another problem. Take a look at our current plate design in the OP. This couldn't work with CM cases. A plate that is designed for use with CM cases wouldn't be able to be used with our current case designs either so in order to offer CM cases & custom cases we'd need to do two plate designs. This further complicates the group buy especially if we're offering different plate layouts. The plates also may be more expensive as a result since we'd be getting less of a single design made.
« Last Edit: Mon, 01 July 2013, 14:39:58 by Photekq »

Offline Techno Trousers

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #154 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 14:53:28 »
Ah, okay, that makes sense. I think an evolving rough estimate of the individual component costs in the OP would be helpful for anyone on the fence. I'd probably still go for it if the full set of components with a complete or "topless" case option comes in under $200. But when people start throwing around estimates of $200 just for the case, wowzers, I don't need all that bling myself. I don't even look at my keyboard while I'm using it.  :))

In the future, if you guys ever decide to do a "standardized" plate and PCB that would fit into a Costar TKL case (assuming they are sourceable, of course) I'd be all over that.

Offline Photekq

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #155 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 14:55:53 »
Ah, okay, that makes sense. I think an evolving rough estimate of the individual component costs in the OP would be helpful for anyone on the fence. I'd probably still go for it if the full set of components with a complete or "topless" case option comes in under $200. But when people start throwing around estimates of $200 just for the case, wowzers, I don't need all that bling myself. I don't even look at my keyboard while I'm using it.  :))

In the future, if you guys ever decide to do a "standardized" plate and PCB that would fit into a Costar TKL case (assuming they are sourceable, of course) I'd be all over that.
Well I think TheFlyingRaccoon has made a layered case that's designed to be made from acrylic. This would be super cheap and definitely sub-$100 unlike the aluminium cases I've designed that you can see in the OP.

Offline TheFlyingRaccoon

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #156 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 15:18:47 »
Ah, okay, that makes sense. I think an evolving rough estimate of the individual component costs in the OP would be helpful for anyone on the fence. I'd probably still go for it if the full set of components with a complete or "topless" case option comes in under $200. But when people start throwing around estimates of $200 just for the case, wowzers, I don't need all that bling myself. I don't even look at my keyboard while I'm using it.  :))

In the future, if you guys ever decide to do a "standardized" plate and PCB that would fit into a Costar TKL case (assuming they are sourceable, of course) I'd be all over that.
Well I think TheFlyingRaccoon has made a layered case that's designed to be made from acrylic. This would be super cheap and definitely sub-$100 unlike the aluminium cases I've designed that you can see in the OP.

Yup. For my acrylic case design I was quoted $80 by AcidFire. Not sure if it can be done cheaper somewhere else though.
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Offline Photekq

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #157 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 15:23:21 »


Yup. For my acrylic case design I was quoted $80 by AcidFire. Not sure if it can be done cheaper somewhere else though.
Is that including the plate? If so, were you quoted for an aluminium or an acrylic plate?

Regardless of the above it seems like a good price considering the fact that it's a one-off.

Offline Techno Trousers

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #158 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 15:43:44 »
Nice! A translucent "smoked" case would be nice.  I'd also like to hear if that includes an acrylic plate.  Personally, I'd prefer a stainless plate for solidity and durability.

Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #159 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 15:59:58 »
Yup. For my acrylic case design I was quoted $80 by AcidFire. Not sure if it can be done cheaper somewhere else though.

But that's not including shipping from wherever AcidFire is. Which is not the US I don't believe. We should really not make guestimates on pricing when there's so many details floating out there. People see prices and start expecting things.

We're *trying* to make the board as affordable as possible. But I personally would hesitate to commit to any sort of price window at the moment.
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Offline Techno Trousers

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #160 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 16:27:17 »
Fair enough, I'll do my best to be patient!

Offline TheFlyingRaccoon

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #161 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 17:48:00 »


Yup. For my acrylic case design I was quoted $80 by AcidFire. Not sure if it can be done cheaper somewhere else though.
Is that including the plate? If so, were you quoted for an aluminium or an acrylic plate?

Regardless of the above it seems like a good price considering the fact that it's a one-off.

The price quoted is with an acrylic plate.

Yup. For my acrylic case design I was quoted $80 by AcidFire. Not sure if it can be done cheaper somewhere else though.

But that's not including shipping from wherever AcidFire is. Which is not the US I don't believe. We should really not make guestimates on pricing when there's so many details floating out there. People see prices and start expecting things.

We're *trying* to make the board as affordable as possible. But I personally would hesitate to commit to any sort of price window at the moment.

Sorry about that Captain :| I realize that AcidFire is outside the US. I am going to get a quote from Pololu, which is located in the US, so shipping should be cheaper. The tend to have very good pricing so hopefully the case is cheaper too. I will make sure to get quote for an aluminum/ metal plate too.
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Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #162 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 17:51:03 »
It's ok, no worries! I just don't want to disappoint people when the price we give out is different from what was "established" early on.
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Offline Techno Trousers

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #163 on: Mon, 01 July 2013, 17:55:52 »
Thanks guys!  I'm really looking forward to this one. A whole modern, quality Alps board is so much more exciting than another set of key caps,  huh?

Offline morpheus

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #164 on: Tue, 02 July 2013, 22:50:24 »
watching this....

Offline Magna224

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #165 on: Thu, 04 July 2013, 13:52:16 »
This is literally the only thing that would get me to buy a new keyboard.
If you live in AZ you can try my keyboards. I usually keep plenty of different ALPS and MX and buckling springs.

Offline komar007

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #166 on: Fri, 05 July 2013, 07:56:46 »
Interested in helping with electronics and firmware.
Not that much in buying one, but who knows what happens if I get to like the alps I ordered from 7bit...
The GH60 firmware with runtime reprogramming capability is ready to work on any keyboard with a USB-enabled AVR chip.
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Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #167 on: Fri, 05 July 2013, 07:59:28 »
Komar, I'll be PMing you soon. We really need help on the PCB/electronics front. Thank you so much for volunteering ^__^
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Offline Photekq

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #168 on: Fri, 05 July 2013, 10:26:42 »
Interested in helping with electronics and firmware.
Not that much in buying one, but who knows what happens if I get to like the alps I ordered from 7bit...
The GH60 firmware with runtime reprogramming capability is ready to work on any keyboard with a USB-enabled AVR chip.
You're a saviour, man.

Offline agodinhost

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #169 on: Fri, 05 July 2013, 12:17:13 »
Interested in helping with electronics and firmware.
Not that much in buying one, but who knows what happens if I get to like the alps I ordered from 7bit...
The GH60 firmware with runtime reprogramming capability is ready to work on any keyboard with a USB-enabled AVR chip.
Hi Komar.
Any news regarding your GH60 PCB?  :)
We were waiting you to release your final changes/fixes in the GH60 PCB in order to replicate it in our ALPs version.
As you already know we did used your GH60 Rev b as our base version and we decided to wait you to finish your magic before moving on.

As soon as you do finish the GH60 PCB I'm going to review the PCB that I did for the GH60 Alps and this one that I'm doing here (MX/ALPs TKL).
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Offline komar007

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #170 on: Fri, 05 July 2013, 12:46:02 »
https://github.com/komar007/ghkb/issues?milestone=1&state=open
When this says "0 open", it's ready:)
Though I'm not sure you want to use the rev B as base for the ALPS version, because it has LEDs all over the place. ALPS don't have holes for LEDs, do they?
Anyway, if you just omit that LED part it should be enough to use pcbnew's change module function and automatically replace all the switch modules with ALPS, fix the traces and you should be good to go;)
« Last Edit: Fri, 05 July 2013, 12:49:28 by komar007 »
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Offline agodinhost

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #171 on: Fri, 05 July 2013, 12:49:33 »
Building one square I2C keyboard with those 1200 switches (thanks JDCarpe)
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Offline komar007

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #172 on: Fri, 05 July 2013, 12:55:34 »
You may want to know that this number as a function of time is not monotonic.
In fact, there were I believe 5 or 6 open issues about a month ago:P
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Offline Photoelectric

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #173 on: Fri, 05 July 2013, 13:25:29 »
This is a very cool project! I would love a TKL Alps board, perhaps with Mattias Quiet switches.
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Offline Grimey

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #174 on: Fri, 05 July 2013, 21:27:42 »
https://github.com/komar007/ghkb/issues?milestone=1&state=open
When this says "0 open", it's ready:)
Though I'm not sure you want to use the rev B as base for the ALPS version, because it has LEDs all over the place. ALPS don't have holes for LEDs, do they?
Anyway, if you just omit that LED part it should be enough to use pcbnew's change module function and automatically replace all the switch modules with ALPS, fix the traces and you should be good to go;)

Alps can have holes for LEDs, but those switches always came linear as they required removing the tactile leaf for space.
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Offline calavera

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #175 on: Mon, 08 July 2013, 00:19:06 »
Whats the exact distance between each switch center from center? 19mm or 19.05mm?

Offline rao2100

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #176 on: Mon, 08 July 2013, 07:40:19 »
Would be interested :-)
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Offline alaricljs

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #177 on: Mon, 08 July 2013, 07:46:14 »
Whats the exact distance between each switch center from center? 19mm or 19.05mm?

.75 inches (19.05mm) is the standard spacing I've seen on the majority of boards.  I think someone tried 19mm tho and changed their mind after a prototype.
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Offline bupsthename

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #178 on: Wed, 10 July 2013, 22:49:23 »
Yeah. Really interested in this project. Super excited at the prospect of an Alps programmable board.

Offline wiredPANDA

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #179 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 11:21:31 »
Tagging this thread, too.  Some how I've missed this until now.  Now to grab the popcorn and watch as things develop.
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Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #180 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 12:15:26 »
The main driver of the project, jdcarpe, has been busy with other stuff. We have the cases designed as best we can and are now waiting for komar/agodinhost/others with PCB design knowledge to help us out. I'll try and post more updates as I get them.
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Offline pasph

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #181 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 12:39:23 »
Please consider buying keycaps from here:
http://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=45879.0
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Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #182 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 12:42:39 »
Why would we run double middlemen, i.e. buy from calavera who's buying from SP? Then we'd just have two middlemen between calavera and us.

Just buy the caps when the GB goes up. We're planning on doing an ANSI layout and that's what calavera is doing.

Or are you just saying that that groupbuy exists?
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Offline pasph

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #183 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 14:07:35 »
Sometimes i'm feeling like some kind of alien
I just mean: when that [IC] will go in [GB] stage Please consider buying keycaps from that [GB]
was so confusing?
Calavera is trying to run the first Alps caps gb including in some way those old non-standard kbs
Something per se commendable and worthy to be known
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Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #184 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 14:09:24 »
Ah ok. Just a misunderstanding on my part is all. Not your fault at all ^__^
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Offline oTurtlez

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #185 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 14:12:10 »
If I could remember for the life of me the switches that were in that Leading Edge I revived last year, I'd LOVE to build a board with those.
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Offline esoomenona

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #186 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 14:13:11 »
So what's my total cost of being a hipster going to be here?

Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #187 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 14:15:15 »
Don't have a good cost estimate yet because the cases aren't completely finished. Waiting on the PCB to be finished. jdcarpe might have more insight into this than I do.
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Offline esoomenona

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #188 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 14:26:09 »
Okay. Don't try to cut costs anywhere. I want to make sure that I'm a high dollar hipster when the time comes.

Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #189 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 14:27:21 »
This will be the PBR of Alps projects. If you're more of a fancy kid with your trippels, you might be outta luck.
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Offline esoomenona

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #190 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 14:28:19 »
I used to like PBR before it was cool.

Offline pasph

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #191 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 14:30:30 »
If I could remember for the life of me the switches that were in that Leading Edge I revived last year, I'd LOVE to build a board with those.

Like this?


Complicated Blue Alps
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Offline AKIMbO

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #192 on: Tue, 30 July 2013, 21:14:02 »
If I could remember for the life of me the switches that were in that Leading Edge I revived last year, I'd LOVE to build a board with those.

Like this?
Show Image


Complicated Blue Alps

Om nom nom nom! Blue ALPs!

I used to like PBR before it was cool.

I liked ALPs before it was cool. 
« Last Edit: Tue, 30 July 2013, 21:16:13 by AKIMbO »
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Offline agodinhost

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #193 on: Wed, 31 July 2013, 07:52:39 »
Hi guys.

As you already know (if you know) Komar007 released another version of his PCB and he is doing his final tests - this means that soon he will release one final version.

So, in order to take our work back where we left what's still missing?

1) PCB, mine - I will redo the PCB as soon as we get an new official version from Komar007
2) Plate?
3) Stabs (related with 2)?
4) Anything else?

Please, update this little list ...
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Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #194 on: Wed, 31 July 2013, 07:58:53 »
1) PCB, mine - I will redo the PCB as soon as we get an new official version from Komar007
2) Plate?
3) Stabs (related with 2)?
4) Anything else?

1) You're the man <3
2) jdcarpe will be handling the plate. I suspect the layout will be like the Ducky 1087XM or the Filco Zero
3) jdcarpe was trying to figure this out. If his plan doesn't work out, we'll have to consider trying to get Cherry or Costar stabilizers to work. I'm not sure how feasible that is, I think Costar would work better. But the last option is to harvest caps/stabs from a board like the Kingsaver does with the Wang 724.
4) Caps are another issue. Hoping that calavera makes headway and I hope we can just use those caps. Otherwise jdcarpe has two leads he's chasing when he's back up and running.

I think that's all the info I've got right now. The cases are being handled by Photekq and TheFlyingRaccoon. The cases are done other than the standoffs and actual dimensions of the PCB. I'm kinda helping overseeing all that and filling in as "team lead" as jdcarpe is currently busy elsewhere.
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Offline oTurtlez

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #195 on: Wed, 31 July 2013, 08:50:43 »
If I could remember for the life of me the switches that were in that Leading Edge I revived last year, I'd LOVE to build a board with those.

Like this?
Show Image


Complicated Blue Alps

Om nom nom nom! Blue ALPs!

I used to like PBR before it was cool.

I liked ALPs before it was cool. 

They were SO amazing to type on. It has a plastic-y click to it that was just intoxicating for some reason. Great tactility and weight, they were just amazing. I found the thing in a dumpster being thrown out, brought it home, Soarer converted it, and then proceeded to sell it to a friend of my Mother's whom worked for Leading Edge for a few years when they first started. I still miss it.
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Offline MTManiac

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #196 on: Tue, 27 August 2013, 09:50:39 »
very interested in this
looks like great work so far

Offline dante

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #197 on: Thu, 12 September 2013, 13:57:25 »
3) jdcarpe was trying to figure this out. If his plan doesn't work out, we'll have to consider trying to get Cherry or Costar stabilizers to work. I'm not sure how feasible that is, I think Costar would work better. But the last option is to harvest caps/stabs from a board like the Kingsaver does with the Wang 724.

Has anyone tried contacting SP to see if they could do hybrid Cherry/Alps stems for Mods/Spacebar?

Basically keep the outer Cherry stems as is - but make the center Alps. There are probably some costs with getting the molds/tooling made but then this could potentially be an option for future Group Buys.

Offline CPTBadAss

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #198 on: Thu, 12 September 2013, 14:08:20 »
No dante and frankly, that would just throw another wrinkle into this project which has been in a sluggish state for months. I think that's a good project for another time, but not this project.

Plus are there Alps boards that will accept center stem placement?
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Offline metalliqaz

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Re: NEW! Alps-based TKL Keyboard Project
« Reply #199 on: Thu, 12 September 2013, 14:36:36 »
yes finding switches and caps are a challenge