Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Monday, January 30, 2017

Purple Gherkin

All Purple Gherkin

  • Purple dyed PCB plates
  • Purple dyed cheap blank PBT keycaps
  • Purple dyed Gateron clear tops
  • Purple dyed Aristotle sliders
  • UV/violet 2x3x4mm LEDs
  • Purple dyed nylon spacers and screws
  • Purple USB cable
  • Genuine Sparkfun Pro Micro (0.8mm PCB)
  • 0.8mm white Gherkin PCB
iDye Poly for 15 minutes. Everything was dyed at the same time. The UV LEDs are not very bright in daylight. A dim glow at night.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Gherkin Lite

Light weight Gherkin keyboard

  • 0.8mm thick PCB with white soldermask (1.6mm is standard thickness)
  • Nylon spacers and screws
  • G20 keycaps
  • Gateron yellow switches

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Gherkin LC

Gherkin with Teensy LC instead of Pro Micro

It can be made to fit. Some pins should be omitted since they would short out the Teensy LC. This should also work for the Teensy 3.2

The LED circuit is connected to a pin and can be turned on and off, but it is not a PWM pin so no brightness control via PWM. The 5v for the LEDs will also need to be connected by jumper wire from VUSB.

I have tried it with TMK/Chibios. There is some problem with Action Map and Chibios, the tap modifiers are misbehaving. Will try a Teensy 3.2 with Kiibohd later.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Pickle Puke

Gherkin with R3 SA Grab Bag keys


Gateron brown switches with milky white cases dyed purple with iDye Poly.

Plateless Gherkin with second PCB for bottom.

Random row 3 SA key caps from PMK grab bag.

Friday, January 6, 2017

First keyboard project - 5 years ago

My custom Phantom Keystroker

I made this after trying to fool someone with a Phantom Keystroker. This was the original version from Thinkgeek that was a bare circuit board, not an external USB dongle. I had made a custom cable to connect it to the internal USB header on the motherboard and hid it inside the computer case. It was found fairly quickly despite not being physically located since the thing shows up in the device list.

Mine disconnects from the USB bus when it is not active. It is also much smaller and can be plugged into a USB port directly. It is based on the Atmega328p and V-USB.

Purple PCB was produced at what is now oshpark.com. Hand soldered surface mount components. A couple of jumper wires to fix some traces.

This is the firmware running on it. All it does is blink the LEDs on the main keyboard (assuming it has them). The file is compiled in the Arduino environment and then the hex file loaded via an ISP programmer.

You can now do something like this with either a Digispark or Adafruit Trinket with little effort.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Recycled Keychains

What to do with a dead Pro Micro?

I use a lot of Pro Micros. They are cheaply made and have a high failure rate. About 1 in 10 are DOA or have some kind of defect. (I have yet to have a genuine Teensy fail, and I have used dozens of them.)

Used some brass wire to make a loop and soldered it in place. Sanded the bottom down so that the copper layer is exposed.

Half the ports on this one are dead. Stuck in the on position. The USB connector is also crooked.

Place  the sandpaper on a flat surface and sand against it lightly, just enough to remove the solder mask.

I have a lot of these 6 key PCBs. A little large for a keychain.