Author Topic: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [Polycarb Plate option added!]  (Read 14996 times)

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Offline MxBlue

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Proper final IC most probably, super quick I promise: https://goo.gl/forms/kZRTDfAE6vMNBiwy2


Hello boys and girls,

So my mate SolidSnake and I have been designing a keyboard for a while now, opinions sourced mainly from the Australian Mech Keys Discord, so it's about time to start getting some broader community ideas and opinions.

Some older renders by TC: http://instagram.com/tre.vc/:




What we're looking currently:

Case: Frosted Polycarbonate, CNC milled
Plate: Brass, mirror-finished and electroplated
Weight: Same as plate
PCB: Custom designed for the MxSS by kawasaki161, White solder mask

Details:
  • 2.9 degrees angle on the case
  • Top mount plate
  • Center USB, Type-B Mini
  • MX and SMK switch support
  • Holtite support
  • No in-switch LEDs, yes to RGB underglow
  • Weight of 550g on just the case, about 1.8kg with the plate and weight (subject to change)

Layout support:



Photos of the first prototype, first shown at Syd Meetup:
More




This is a poor camera job of how the RGB looks like: https://streamable.com/dpam9

Photos of the second prototype:




More












My attempt at trying to show off RGB: https://streamable.com/keyp2

The fingerprints and marks on the brass are unfortunately a mistake by the factory for the prototypes, I've given them a list of all issues to resolve and will ensure they are done so. Brass parts in the production run will be more resistant to fingerprints. Inconsistency between the top and bottom of the case in colour is due to a mistake by us, causing the top to be redone as a different batch. Production sets will be the same shade. Also, forgive the PCB, I had to demonstrate RGB somehow without a proper PCB  :))

Things to change from here:

- USB port will get some adjustments, and the PCB will extend out into the port and the port will extend to the bottom edge of the top.
- Barbs that help connect the top and bottom will be modified so they are only used for alignment rather than connection, they worked too well and were hard to remove
- The screws on the middle of the left and right side of the plate will be removed to improve aesthetics, plate remains rigid without them.
- The screw that was located in the same place as the USB port will be offset to the side so they plate can be removed without desoldering.
- We weren't too happy with the screws we have on hand, so we'll be replacing those.

Black nickel-plated steel plate/weights will be lasercut from Stainless Steel grade 304, with an appearance similar to this: https://imgur.com/a/xdfXh
The reflectiveness will be better than the images shown (factory pics are never great lol). It is important to note that these will not be prototyped, but we will work with the factory to ensure they are functional. I can not guarantee the appearance.

Polycarb plate will be CNC'd and sandblasted, and again, will not be prototyped. I have tested with an acrylic plate in its place, and it has a fairly significant amount of flex in some areas. I can not guarantee the appearance or performance of this plate. Here's a pic of the acrylic plate without the protective film removed, and why I'm adding this option despite what I said:

It is quite pretty.

Pricing estimates:

- Kit - $350USD
- Extra Plate - $60USD
- Extra PCB - $50USD
- Black Nickel-plated Steel Plate/Weight (Extra) - $130USD
- Polycarb Plate (Extra) - $60USD

Both the Black Nickel Plate/Weight and the Polycarb Plate have a MOQ of 5.

Why so expensive? Polycarbonate is expensive, and we only plan on doing a run of 25 so ensure everything turns out right.

Issues to be resolved:

- We might want a different graphic on the blocker LED, feel free to suggest.

Now that that's all said, pls tell me what you think :)
https://goo.gl/forms/kZRTDfAE6vMNBiwy2

New blocker design!



Angle changed to 2.9 degrees.


Polycarb plate option added!

« Last Edit: Mon, 09 April 2018, 17:46:33 by MxBlue »

Offline _haru

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #1 on: Fri, 22 December 2017, 07:35:46 »
Simply stunning!
Quote from: subcat on Auskeys
thanks for clearing that up haru i thought your mouth really looked like the omegalul emote in real life

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Offline zekkin

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #2 on: Fri, 22 December 2017, 08:05:52 »
100% in for this. I don't have any feedback aside from this is something I never knew I needed until I saw your renders a few weeks back.
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Offline Petch

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #3 on: Fri, 22 December 2017, 08:19:21 »
Would be more interested if it were at least 5 degrees

Understandable if you want to keep it a low profile though

Offline kawasaki161

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #4 on: Fri, 22 December 2017, 08:25:33 »

  • MX and SMK switch support (SMK support only for ANSI enter)


The PCB will also support SMK on ISO enter  :thumb:

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #5 on: Fri, 22 December 2017, 09:05:08 »

  • MX and SMK switch support (SMK support only for ANSI enter)


The PCB will also support SMK on ISO enter  :thumb:

Ayyy, nice work ;)

Offline Kafka

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #6 on: Fri, 22 December 2017, 09:08:52 »

Angle is a bit low but case is dope. Loving the polycarb stuff recently.

Offline bluesclera

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #7 on: Fri, 22 December 2017, 09:58:34 »
Not my favorite layout but different is always good.

Offline Rogerwyf

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #8 on: Fri, 22 December 2017, 09:59:17 »
Looking good!

Offline blacksimon

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #9 on: Sat, 23 December 2017, 23:33:27 »
MXSS just in time for XMAS, I see what you did there

Offline _rubik

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #10 on: Sat, 23 December 2017, 23:41:00 »
Those renders are gorgeous. The kit too!

Offline Trente

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #11 on: Sun, 24 December 2017, 01:00:17 »
In for the SMK support, something additional I would like to see might some galaxy purple transparent color lol, and PCB with hot swappable support (maybe just a larger hole for hotiles)
« Last Edit: Sun, 24 December 2017, 01:04:02 by Trente »

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #12 on: Sun, 24 December 2017, 02:16:14 »
In for the SMK support, something additional I would like to see might some galaxy purple transparent color lol, and PCB with hot swappable support (maybe just a larger hole for hotiles)

Hotswap is possible, I'll add it to the OP.

As for purple, I might be able to source it, but it's a matter of not enough demand. I'd have to run a MoQ for any particular different material I ask of them.

I'll ask regardless, see where things go.

Offline amnesia0287

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #13 on: Mon, 25 December 2017, 15:32:17 »
In for the SMK support, something additional I would like to see might some galaxy purple transparent color lol, and PCB with hot swappable support (maybe just a larger hole for hotiles)

Hotswap is possible, I'll add it to the OP.

As for purple, I might be able to source it, but it's a matter of not enough demand. I'd have to run a MoQ for any particular different material I ask of them.

I'll ask regardless, see where things go.

If it was purple, I would have no choice but to buy it.

Offline kawasaki161

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #14 on: Mon, 25 December 2017, 16:00:39 »
In for the SMK support, something additional I would like to see might some galaxy purple transparent color lol, and PCB with hot swappable support (maybe just a larger hole for hotiles)

If SMK legs are the same size as cherry legs you could totally use holtites and make it hotswappable.
If they are not, I'm not going to add that feature because I have no experience with SMK switches, making them hotswappable and picking the correct hole size and socket for everything to fit correctly. The current holes just happened to fit holtites by pure coincidence.

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #15 on: Mon, 25 December 2017, 23:13:26 »
In for the SMK support, something additional I would like to see might some galaxy purple transparent color lol, and PCB with hot swappable support (maybe just a larger hole for hotiles)

Hotswap is possible, I'll add it to the OP.

As for purple, I might be able to source it, but it's a matter of not enough demand. I'd have to run a MoQ for any particular different material I ask of them.

I'll ask regardless, see where things go.

If it was purple, I would have no choice but to buy it.

We thought it over and we're unfortunately out of money to do more prototypes, no luck this time around.

Offline Peiweisgreat

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #16 on: Mon, 01 January 2018, 02:20:26 »
In for the SMK support, something additional I would like to see might some galaxy purple transparent color lol, and PCB with hot swappable support (maybe just a larger hole for hotiles)

Hotswap is possible, I'll add it to the OP.

As for purple, I might be able to source it, but it's a matter of not enough demand. I'd have to run a MoQ for any particular different material I ask of them.

I'll ask regardless, see where things go.

If it was purple, I would have no choice but to buy it.

We thought it over and we're unfortunately out of money to do more prototypes, no luck this time around.

Honestly I think the clear polycarb is the cleanest looking. Color sounds nice, but not really needed. What will the case look like fully built from the side? I don't believe there is a picture for that.

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #17 on: Mon, 01 January 2018, 02:27:09 »
Honestly I think the clear polycarb is the cleanest looking. Color sounds nice, but not really needed. What will the case look like fully built from the side? I don't believe there is a picture for that.

There is a render, but I guess that's not perfectly side on. I'll get a photo taken and post it on the thread. Do note that we are changing the side profile a bit, mostly to bring down the height of the case.

Offline atomicus

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #18 on: Mon, 01 January 2018, 06:43:38 »
Is there a reason for no in-switch LEDs?

I've not used a polycarb case before. Does it typically mean less 'reverb'?

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #19 on: Mon, 01 January 2018, 06:50:05 »
Is there a reason for no in-switch LEDs?

I've not used a polycarb case before. Does it typically mean less 'reverb'?

I'll paste in a reply I gave to a reddit user:
Quote
Can't comment on that personally as I left for vacation before the board was fully assembled as in the photos, left it to SolidSnake to play with.

He doesn't have a reddit acc, so I'll just proxy for him:

As of now, I've tested using the prototype with Kailh pro purples and R8 67g Zealios on it. When I type with the pro purples, the switches produce a very satisfying, low pitched 'thuck' sound on bottom out. When typing with the Zealios, I would best describe the experience as 'well-oiled' or 'crisp'. The feeling of the tactile bump contrasts with very rigid and solid bottoming out against the brass plate, if that makes sense. I would attribute this to stiffness of the plate making sure there is absolutely zero flex or bending on down strokes, and the polycarbonate material eating any reverb or noise from the springs. Please don't let the material choice deter you - the polycarbonate is about 20mm thick at thickest point, and the whole board feels more heavy and substantial than a few of the other metal keyboards that I own. The polycarbonate enclosure feels a lot more reassuring in contrast to acrylic or abs moulded plastic cases.

Also do keep in mind that the plate is mounted with double-sided tape for the time being as well, so things may change a bit when its screwed in.

As for inswitch LEDs, we piggy backed off an existing PCB that was designed for the TGR 910, but requested enough modifications that it became our own. Adding inswitch LEDs is a very time consuming matter in terms of PCB design, so we made a simpler request to have compatibility for SMK instead.

It's just a tradeoff we made.

Offline futurecrime

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #20 on: Mon, 01 January 2018, 07:07:00 »
This is dope. Do you have a rough GB date in mind?

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #21 on: Mon, 01 January 2018, 07:12:19 »
This is dope. Do you have a rough GB date in mind?

I'd like to say late Jan/early Feb, but I might need more time to piece things together. I want the whole GB to be over soon after we launch it, so making sure things are ready well in advance.
« Last Edit: Mon, 01 January 2018, 07:16:43 by MxBlue »

Offline foxlive

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #22 on: Mon, 01 January 2018, 07:44:51 »
Love it! I think I will join this :)!
           

Offline futurecrime

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #23 on: Mon, 01 January 2018, 08:18:33 »
This is dope. Do you have a rough GB date in mind?

I'd like to say late Jan/early Feb, but I might need more time to piece things together. I want the whole GB to be over soon after we launch it, so making sure things are ready well in advance.

Cool. Not sure if I'll be able to afford it, but I definitely want it.

Offline reccatyo

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #24 on: Wed, 03 January 2018, 22:16:36 »
Polycarb endgame.

Want it, but i don't know if i can afford it.  :'(

Offline FrankPrime

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #25 on: Sat, 03 March 2018, 17:49:36 »
This looks fantastic, I am really liking the layout and poly case. Nice work!

Offline dead_pixel_design

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #26 on: Sat, 03 March 2018, 18:07:00 »
Filled out the form with some recommendations and feedback. Love this board.

Online regionfree

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #27 on: Sat, 03 March 2018, 19:00:31 »
waiting for this one as well. there updates on this?

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #28 on: Sun, 04 March 2018, 16:59:37 »
Thanks for all the positive (and negative heh) feedback.

I apologise for the lack of updates, didn't want to bump the thread before I had something more concrete to say but since it's already happened, might as well go ahead.

We weren't too happy about the consistency of the factory that we got the first prototype from, not to mention they had some issues with doing brass inserts whereas everywhere else said it was fine sooo... new factory now. We're currently awaiting a prototype from them, and if this works out, we can move on to actually doing a group buy stage.

I'll chuck some more info up on the OP.

Offline dead_pixel_design

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #29 on: Sun, 04 March 2018, 17:01:41 »
Sorry to hear you were having some quality issue with your factory. Glad to see you guys forging ahead though! Hope to see some sample photos when you get more in!

Offline pr0ximity

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #30 on: Sun, 04 March 2018, 17:46:05 »
More poly boards is always a good thing
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Offline vewy_nice

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #31 on: Mon, 05 March 2018, 08:50:26 »
Dat top-right blocker.

TAKE MY MONEY.

I got one of the KBDfans acryllic 5* cases, and I was pretty underwhelmed. 
This looks spectacular!

Offline bluesclera

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #32 on: Mon, 05 March 2018, 08:53:41 »
The top right blocker is the only thing keeping me from buying this board.

Offline Kevadu

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #33 on: Mon, 05 March 2018, 12:49:53 »
The top right blocker is the only thing keeping me from buying this board.

I kind of agree.  If anything I would rather have more space around the arrows.

That said I'm very interested in anything that's got SMK support.

Offline dead_pixel_design

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #34 on: Mon, 05 March 2018, 13:13:13 »
Big fan of the Top Right blocker as well, think it looks great!

Offline airyloft

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #35 on: Mon, 05 March 2018, 13:18:02 »
My vote is for NO top right blocker....but i guess that's at moot point at this stage.

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #36 on: Mon, 05 March 2018, 14:00:03 »
My vote is for NO top right blocker....but i guess that's at moot point at this stage.

Hehe you guessed right. I can see why, but for Solid and I, there's an unshakeable aesthetic in it. Please do suggest designs for it in any note, we do want to make it look good.

Offline vewy_nice

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #37 on: Mon, 05 March 2018, 14:27:26 »
It has a sort of "transparent gameboy" vibe to it, really.

Are there any different finish options that might be popular for the plate? 

It wouldn't work on brass, but blue PVD would be sooooooooo amaziong :o

Is there an estimated price range for this?

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK
« Reply #38 on: Mon, 05 March 2018, 14:40:20 »
It has a sort of "transparent gameboy" vibe to it, really.

Are there any different finish options that might be popular for the plate? 

It wouldn't work on brass, but blue PVD would be sooooooooo amaziong :o

Is there an estimated price range for this?

We would have liked to offer another finish, thinking something like black chrome, but budget doesn't permit prototyping anymore.

As for price, we're aiming for 350USD, we'll finalise pricing as we move into the GB stage.

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #39 on: Mon, 05 March 2018, 23:51:48 »
Added a new IC regarding extras in the GB, and reconsidering a shiny black weight  :thumb:
https://goo.gl/forms/QGoM3yl582vL19ye2

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #40 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 04:56:42 »
Manufacturer quoted me $130 before shipping on the black nickel steel plate/weight, so it'll probably be around that price, with a MOQ of 5 as that's what I got the quote for.

Offline vewy_nice

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #41 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 06:20:41 »
That nickel plated finish is awesome, too! I'd definitely go for that! 
Would it be $130 on top of the case price, with no included brass parts, or is that an add-on?

Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #42 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 06:23:54 »
That nickel plated finish is awesome, too! I'd definitely go for that! 
Would it be $130 on top of the case price, with no included brass parts, or is that an add-on?

$130 on top of the base kit, yes, but it will include the brass parts as well.

An unfortunate compromise I had to make to preserve the current price for the brass parts.

Offline vewy_nice

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #43 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 06:29:51 »
I'll still pay it ;)

I've already got 3 $400+ keyboards on order, what's another one?

Offline koduh

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #44 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 08:58:38 »
Hey guys, it looks fantastic. Would you consider a version that doesn't have the top right blocker?

Offline zekkin

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #45 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 10:12:15 »
Hot take: removing the top right blocker makes this board just another 65% and renders this buy almost pointless. The top right blocker is an homage to a board that's not easily acquired (TGR 910) as well as provides an opportunity to have a keyboard made out of a not-so-common material.

Keep the top right blocker.
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Offline koduh

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #46 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 11:47:07 »
Hot take: removing the top right blocker makes this board just another 65% and renders this buy almost pointless. The top right blocker is an homage to a board that's not easily acquired (TGR 910) as well as provides an opportunity to have a keyboard made out of a not-so-common material.

Keep the top right blocker.

I said an option without, not remove it from everyone.

I'd like a "normal" 65% board made of out a not-so-common material as well. When, as of right now, the two 65%s made out of Polycarbonate are this layout with a top right corner blocker.

Offline Rafa_n

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #47 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 12:02:03 »
removing the top right blocker makes this board just another 65% and renders this buy almost pointless.

ummmm what. So what you're saying is that the only original thing about the board is that top right blocker? lol

Offline zekkin

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #48 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 13:34:08 »
removing the top right blocker makes this board just another 65% and renders this buy almost pointless.

ummmm what. So what you're saying is that the only original thing about the board is that top right blocker? lol

No, what I'm saying is that the top right blocker is just one of the unique parts of the board and to take it away would, in my opinion, diminish the overall novelty/value of the board itself.

Hot take, like I said.
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Offline MxBlue

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Re: [IC] MxSS - Polycarb 65% Kit for MX/SMK [New IC form]
« Reply #49 on: Tue, 06 March 2018, 13:49:25 »
I completely understand where you're coming from about the blocker, but it's worth noting that every other version needs to have its own MOQ, and adds complication to the buy, which is why I won't be offering it.

I'm keeping this buy as simple as possible so it won't take too long and has minimum reason to go wrong.

I'm sorry for all the people this excludes, but that's how it is.
« Last Edit: Tue, 06 March 2018, 15:30:36 by MxBlue »