[Gosse Adema] has been poking a Microsoft Natural Elite for the last 20 years, and the curvy old girl is about to give out. Looks like he got bit pretty hard by the DIY mechanical keyboard bug in his quest to replace her. Luckily for us, he documented his build.
Where do we start? A first keeb is decently-sized undertaking, but [Gosse] turned it up a notch and made it as low-profile as he could — it’s 2cm thick with the keycaps on. This ultimately meant designing the board such that the anti-ghosting diodes sit inside a cutout underneath their respective switches, which are low-profile Cherry MX Reds. There is no Eagle template for those yet, so [Gosse] whipped one up and milled a prototype PCB before deciding to go the fab route.
The Raspberry Pi Zero W that controls this keeb lives in a separate controller box in the name of slimness. If you are as-yet unimpressed by this build for some reason, [Gosse] even rolled his own firmware, which he explains as part of this epic journey. Seems the only thing he didn’t do was mold his own keycaps, but not everyone wants to type on blanks. We wonder if [Gosse] is aware of the terrifically low-slung Kailh choc switches, although prefab keycap options for those are even more limited.
Speaking of, here’s a tasty choc-filled game pad.