Simple DIY Mechanical Keyboard

Introduction: Simple DIY Mechanical Keyboard

*This keyboard will only sound like a mechanical one.

DISCLAIMER: This is my first Instructables, so please bear with me. This Instructables will not replicate your $100 mechanical keyboard! After this mod, you will be able to hear clear audio feedback when your keyboard bottoms out. Some keyboards make a click noise when they are depressed all the way down, but the silicone piece between the keys and sensor prevents this full depression. This mod allows you to take advantage of that built in "click". I've only tried with this model, so proceed at your own risk. This is a completely mechanical/hardware hack.

If you're ready, grab an old keyboard and get hacking!

Old Keyboard
Thin foam/cardboard

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Step 1: Disassembly

Disassemble the keyboard, and separate the three pieces.
1) The top, with the keys
2) The silicone sheet
3) The bottom plastic with the circuit board on top.
Make sure to keep the screws somewhere safe.

*Now would also be a good time clean your keyboard, if you need to. Just take the top piece, with the keys, and run it under the tap or clean with compressed air. Let the assembly dry before continuing.

Step 2: Foam

Take the foam and cut a few 1cm x 1cm pieces. There should be approximately as many foam squares as screws.

Step 3: Cutting Holes

Take a square of foam and fold it in half diagonally. Use the scissors to make a small cut in the middle, just big enough to cut through to the other side of the foam. Flip each piece over to check if you've actually cut through. You should be able to fit a small screwdriver through the slit.

Step 4: Adding the Foam

In this step, we will be increasing the distance the key travels, allowing the keys to bottom out completely, making noise.

Replace the silicone cover on the bottom half. Push each screw into its slot from the bottom, then push it into a piece of foam. Don't worry about getting it perfect, just make sure that the foam keeps the screw from falling back down. You don't really need to "foam" and push up all the screws, but make sure to get most of the middle ones that are near the center of the keyboard.

Step 5: Reassembly

Put the front piece (with the keys) back on, and tighten the screws. There is no need to put back all the screws, just tighten the screws you set in the last step.

Step 6: You're Done!

Plug your keyboard in and try it out. If you can't really tell the difference - the keys don't seem to be bottoming out, loosen the screws a little bit. If the keystrokes aren't registering, try tightening the screws.

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    3 Discussions


    4 years ago

    title must be: DIY add some noise to you membrane keyboard


    4 years ago

    The most important thing I saw here were the words, "mechanical keyboard". I didn't know that there were such things, except for the kits I've seen for converting old typewriters (Underwriter, Royal, etc) so that they could be used with computers. Such kits were the answer to my dreams, except for their cost. Now, my hopes have been resurrected. I'm going to see what I can learn about mechanical keyboards. Hope exists!


    6 years ago on Introduction

    You should specify in the title that it only sounds like a mechanical keyboard and isn't one.