Author Topic: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical  (Read 9034 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline fog

  • Thread Starter
  • Posts: 57
  • Location: Seattle
  • actual synthetic
    • Solarized
Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 17:50:09 »
Inspired by the planck and atomic builds I finished recently, I took the next step and designed a plate for hand wiring. Key design constraints:

  • Hand placement should be symmetrical. Off center hand placement, often unavoidable, is irritating (particularly if keyboard is perched over a laptop keyboard)
  • 60-70%
  • Matrix layout
  • Thumb-key centric
  • Key switches to remain fully accessible for spring/slider replacement
  • Minimal height (currently 8mm top plat to bottom plate gap, will do a 6mm next time)
  • Integrated usb hub

Learned a lot and it has served as an excellent prototype for future revisions and variations that I'm working on now.

Note that I've settled on SA+Clears for the time being, though the build shots show DSA+Reds.

Full build album...

Here's the end result:





A shot from the base plate:



Switches are all modifiable while soldered in place:



More (full album)...
Ethan Schoonover / http://ethanschoonover.com
HHKB Pro 2 Blank / Leopold FC660M Clears / Keycool 84 Blacks

Offline engicoder

  • Posts: 721
  • Location: North Carolina
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #1 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 17:56:21 »
Great work!! Very clean! Its great to see all these new matrix board ideas being built and experimented with.
Your plate is a work of art. Could you give a little more detail on how you had it made?
   

Offline Sygaldry

  • Edema Ruh
  • * Esteemed Elder
  • Posts: 1257
  • Location: Chicago
  • All the truth in the world is held in stories.
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #2 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 17:59:00 »
That looks super interesting. How does it feel to type on a non-staggered layout?
null

Offline joey

  • Posts: 2295
  • Location: UK
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #3 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 18:13:59 »
That top plate is smooooooth

Offline fog

  • Thread Starter
  • Posts: 57
  • Location: Seattle
  • actual synthetic
    • Solarized
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #4 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 18:17:16 »
Great work!! Very clean! Its great to see all these new matrix board ideas being built and experimented with.
Your plate is a work of art. Could you give a little more detail on how you had it made?

I had it manufactured here in Seattle by a CNC shop. They actually do mail order usually, but it's convenient for me to pick up in person. Not the cheapest but they have outstanding quality and I've used them for other projects in the past.

The shop is Front Panel Express and they have a proprietery lightweight cad application that you use to submit files (though it takes DXF and other standard formats for import). You specify materials and tooling in the application. Very convenient. You also get real time pricing in the app, which is great when you want to shave off some $ from the project.

I was thinking about proposing some plate variants and seeing if anyone wanted to go in on a group buy to reduce the next round costs (I have about 10 designs for everything from full down to 40%, both staggered and matrix). I'm also happy to share the FPE/dxf files once they are tweaked with the learnings from this prototype.
Ethan Schoonover / http://ethanschoonover.com
HHKB Pro 2 Blank / Leopold FC660M Clears / Keycool 84 Blacks

Offline fog

  • Thread Starter
  • Posts: 57
  • Location: Seattle
  • actual synthetic
    • Solarized
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #5 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 18:21:49 »
That looks super interesting. How does it feel to type on a non-staggered layout?

I really feel like, after a day or two, there is little appreciable difference for me. It's not a mindblowing improvement, nor is it impossible to adjust to. It's like when you go from a staggered layout to a keyboard with a *slightly* different key pitch.

I like it, but I'm not wedded to matrix. I actually just completed some designs for a staggered layout similar to this board.

What is most impactful for me are the thumb keys. They make a HUGE difference in my typing. Hard to leave those behind now.

I only use the three center thumb keys (really almost the only keys I use at all on the lower row). They are currently:

Backspace+shift  // SpaceFN // NumericsFN (i'm testing a simulated 40% mode)

I also like:

Shift // SpaceFN // Backspace
Ethan Schoonover / http://ethanschoonover.com
HHKB Pro 2 Blank / Leopold FC660M Clears / Keycool 84 Blacks

Offline fog

  • Thread Starter
  • Posts: 57
  • Location: Seattle
  • actual synthetic
    • Solarized
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #6 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 18:23:09 »
That top plate is smooooooth

Black anodized aluminum. The shop I used is super careful with their surfaces and it's gorgeous in person.

I tested the lettering with one no-infill and one infill. Definitely would do infill on both next time.
Ethan Schoonover / http://ethanschoonover.com
HHKB Pro 2 Blank / Leopold FC660M Clears / Keycool 84 Blacks

Offline jdcarpe

  • * Curator
  • Posts: 8854
  • Location: Odessa, TX
  • Live long, and prosper.
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #7 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 18:26:11 »
snip

Hey wait, you are the creator of Solarized? Very cool! Nice to have you here. :D

Also, that board is gorgeous. I'm not a fan of matrix layouts, but it looks very attractive.
KMAC :: LZ-GH :: WASD CODE :: WASD v2 :: GH60 :: Alps64 :: JD45 :: IBM Model M :: IBM 4704 "Pingmaster"

http://jd40.info :: http://jd45.info


in memoriam

"When I was a kid, I used to take things apart and never put them back together."

Offline fog

  • Thread Starter
  • Posts: 57
  • Location: Seattle
  • actual synthetic
    • Solarized
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #8 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 18:33:09 »
snip

Hey wait, you are the creator of Solarized? Very cool! Nice to have you here. :D

Also, that board is gorgeous. I'm not a fan of matrix layouts, but it looks very attractive.

Thanks! I'm a fan of your work here and was watched the 40% stuff you were doing long before I ever posted.

I'm actually typing this on Penumbras on my board right now, so Solarized both on screen and off :)

I may move back to staggered, if for no other reason than convenience of keycap swapping. I am working on a staggered prototype plate similar to this (though I may do away with or tighten up the left most column).
Ethan Schoonover / http://ethanschoonover.com
HHKB Pro 2 Blank / Leopold FC660M Clears / Keycool 84 Blacks

Offline fog

  • Thread Starter
  • Posts: 57
  • Location: Seattle
  • actual synthetic
    • Solarized
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #9 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 18:55:13 »
Here's an updated shot of the current test SA/Penumbra keycaps, on clear stems/springs.

Ethan Schoonover / http://ethanschoonover.com
HHKB Pro 2 Blank / Leopold FC660M Clears / Keycool 84 Blacks

Offline Wilba

  • * Maker
  • Posts: 440
  • Location: Melbourne, Australia
  • Custom Keyboard Designer
    • wilba.tech
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #10 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 20:58:16 »
Nice layout, and construction!

This is very similar to one of the variants I am adding to the Atomic PCB.

90781-0
« Last Edit: Sat, 14 February 2015, 21:00:24 by Wilba »

Offline fog

  • Thread Starter
  • Posts: 57
  • Location: Seattle
  • actual synthetic
    • Solarized
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #11 on: Sat, 14 February 2015, 21:25:36 »
Nice layout, and construction!

This is very similar to one of the variants I am adding to the Atomic PCB.

(Attachment Link)

I like that bottom row. I really don't use the outer two 1.5U keys on my bottom row at all, just the center three keys. I would miss the dedicated ctrl key to the left of A, however. I prefer ctrl there for vim use :)
Ethan Schoonover / http://ethanschoonover.com
HHKB Pro 2 Blank / Leopold FC660M Clears / Keycool 84 Blacks

Offline jdcarpe

  • * Curator
  • Posts: 8854
  • Location: Odessa, TX
  • Live long, and prosper.
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #12 on: Thu, 05 March 2015, 14:08:10 »
I'm just going to tack this on here, for posterity (and so I can link to it). :)

From: http://www.reddit.com/r/MechanicalKeyboards/comments/2vx98k/photos_planckatomic_inspired_cartesian_longboard/colpvq1

Quote from: fog
Thanks for noticing the soldering. I tried to document my flux application / "P" bend method of mounting the diodes. I find it is the most successful hand wiring method that I've used so far.

Quote from: kejadlen
Can you explain the flux application? I hand-rolled an Atreus+Planck a month or so ago, and the soldering was a nightmare. (Probably since I'm such a noob at it.)

Quote from: fog
So the first time I hand soldered cherry switches, I did the 'bent diode' method, where you put a moderate oblique bend in the diode lead and rest it against the switch contact while you solder it. I found this method to be very unreliable. I had several solder joints which seemed fine but days later would separate from the switch contact.

I addressed this two ways:

    I apply flux, using a syringe style applicator as in the photos, over each of the switch contacts prior to soldering.
Show Image
Show Image
Show Image


    I bend the diode lead (NOT the black band lead, the other one!) into a rough circle (it ends up being a P shape due to the shape of my needle nose pliers).
Show Image


This results in the solder being trapped in the bowl of the P, completely surrounding the fluxed switch contact.
Show Image
Show Image


I've had 100% success with my switch solder joints this way.

Also, I use bus wire and small diameter heat shrink tube to make my column connectors. I know some people try to peel off the insulator from regular wire, but that's crazy. Just connect up the columns with bus wire and use heat shrink tube for insulation in between. Very easy.
« Last Edit: Fri, 06 March 2015, 08:58:01 by jdcarpe »
KMAC :: LZ-GH :: WASD CODE :: WASD v2 :: GH60 :: Alps64 :: JD45 :: IBM Model M :: IBM 4704 "Pingmaster"

http://jd40.info :: http://jd45.info


in memoriam

"When I was a kid, I used to take things apart and never put them back together."

Offline Johan

  • Posts: 241
  • Location: Stockholm, Sweden.
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #13 on: Thu, 05 March 2015, 14:17:08 »
I wonder If I'm the only on here that expected to see a skateboard.
Sick board regardless!
Uh, stuff.

Offline mmbacon

  • Posts: 7
  • Location: Miami
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #14 on: Fri, 06 March 2015, 08:57:12 »
I wonder If I'm the only on here that expected to see a skateboard.
Sick board regardless!
Not the only one haha! but wow this looks great!
must resist bacon on keyboard

Offline CPTBadAss

  • Woke up like this
  • Posts: 14305
  • Rich Homie Huang.
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #15 on: Tue, 10 March 2015, 07:07:24 »
That layout is cool but HOLY **** THAT PLATE IS AMAZING!! Thanks for sharing with us :). If you don't mind, could you share with us the shop that did your anodization?

Offline bueller

  • MX baller
  • * Esteemed Elder
  • Posts: 3769
  • Location: Perth, Australia
  • Church of the Ergo Clear
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #16 on: Tue, 10 March 2015, 07:26:08 »
No idea how I missed this originally, beautiful work man! Love the name engraving(?), really adds the finishing touch.
It's a good width!  If it's half-width it's too narrow, and full-width is too wide. 

[WTT] bueller's trade thread - CLACKS WANTED

Offline _rubik

  • Posts: 663
  • Location: 192.168.x.x
  • Typing on: Mech27, Greetech Blacks, GMK Jamon
Re: Cartesian Longboard - 70% Symmetrical
« Reply #17 on: Sat, 22 April 2017, 10:37:42 »
I know I'm reviving this from the dead, but I've seen this bottom row layout in a few other places and I'm curious how it's mapped. More important: how do you enjoy it?