Inspiration for the project:
My old laptop lost two keys while valiantly donating parts to save my wireless keyboard. I kept the keys on my desk because I liked them and had decided to use the keys for jewelry but upon finishing the task of removing all the keys, wondered if I could keep the clickable mechanism.
The main reason for my reasoning was to provide an interchangeable individual key platform for any key the same size and shape.
The wearer could change the word love for any word that did not have any repetitive letters.
L O V E
I A M Home
! < 3 U
I < 3 Home
C A T !
F R A K
E T C .
Step 1: Removing Key Board Keys and Board From Computer
You will be removing the aluminum board on which the keys are laid on top of.
Using a thin flat head screw driver or knife wedge a knife into the bottom right edge of the board. Insert the knife and pull back to separate the parts.
Unhook the aluminum board from computer frame. Aluminum board has hooks. See Images.
Final image gif shows the part being flapped up and down to break the final aluminum hooks to simplify the removal process.
Step 2: Key Parts Removal and Separating and Organizing All the Parts.
Remove the All the key clasps till the plastic material with rubber key springs is exposed.
Make sure you keep all your key clasps labeled in plastic bags depending on the size keys your keyboard has.
Step 3: Making Lines on the Aluminum Board
With a straight edge and a pencil, draw a line by resting the straight edge on the top clasp and bottom clasp.
Step 4: Cut the Aluminum Board (CAUTION! SHARP EDGES)
Using kitchen shears, cut the board. This will cause the aluminum to curl.
Flatten the strip with a straight edge. Cut two rows off the plastic piece too. You will probably not be able to see the line so eyeball-it based on the pattern.
And repeat. This can be quite exhausting, therefore I would suggest only the first two rows and save the rest for another project.
Step 5: Gluing the Plastic to the Aluminum
I used craft bond spray adhesive but it is not the best for this task. It works though.
Step 6: Cut and Flatten
Cut the strip into key sized parts, and flatten the curled edges with pliers.
Step 7: Combine the Clasping Piece and the Letters
The video shows how to add and remove a button and fix the clasping piece into an assembly.
See the video in the intro. It shows how the complete assembly is put together and taken apart.
Step 8: Dremel: Sanding the Edges Down
If indoors you will need the following set up as seen in the primary image, in order to prevent aluminum dust from flying everywhere.
Step 9: Make the Holes and Add the Clasps
Line up the clasping mechanism part and determine the orientation. Drill the holes and add the clasps.
CAUTION: Wear safety goggles when drilling
Drilling: <iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/GxogbBPzFGs" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>