Steampunk: RSS telegraph, keybard, etc.

[Jake von Slatt] has sent along a few of his projects, but his timing never quite coincides with mine. It’s about time I give this guy some coverage. His latest project was a pair telegraph sounders – he uses them to tap out RSS feeds from his linux box. The amateur radio code requirement in the US has been dropped, but this is probably a great way to practice your Morse code. His keyboard build is definitely one of the most original efforts I’ve seen.


  1. HaX80r says:

    Almost missed it there. It’s 12:27 now, and this hack just loaded. March 31st was almost a day without a hack.

    Very cool hack. Saw this one somewhere – engadget or Wired magazine or something.

  2. James says:

    That keyboard is A-Mazing.

  3. ex-parrot says:

    I’m planning on trying his electric PCB etch method. Also intriguing is that he managed to copper plate with copper sulphate (blue vitriol) using just a cotton bud. I don’t quite get the chemistry happening there, but I’d like to know more so I can replicate it…

  4. That keyboard is awesome… I love steam punk stuff.

    I’m mostly envious because I don’t have the patients to make things look pretty, most of my hacks are quite fugly, though functional.

  5. Mr Jones says:

    wow! awesome old school techniques.


  6. Madd_matt says:

    That is honestly the nicest looking keyboard I’ve ever seen.

    Hooking up a telegraph to a computer is a neat project too. It would be kinda cool to hook it up to your email so you could go real old school, and send+receive emails via telegraph

  7. Wolf says:

    Man, and I though I could work with metal, the workmanship on the telegraph souders is nothing short of perfect. forget nice reflective finishes, my work isn’t even squared up.

  8. Ender says:

    I cant wait until summer. As soon as I can get back into my buddys shop I am building myself one of those keyboards.

  9. PKM says:

    The keyboard is beautiful- a real functional work of art. ditto for the RSS telegraph sounder.

    @4: from what I remember of my chemistry it’s a simple substitution reaction in solution-
    CuSO4 + Fe -> Cu + FeSO4 (I simplify, but you get the idea). The cotton bud probably gets the solution down into the surface scratches on the iron so the coating is a little more durable, and there might be some more interesting stuff going on with the metals the iron is alloyed with- I’m assuming altoids tins are steel.

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