Have been promising a long time to do this, so finally took a few hours to butcher another mini!
As you can see, for the most part, it’s pretty good, but NOT perfect
what I’ve discovered…..
2 part epoxy works best
Each keycap row is a different depth – the top one needs the least glue, row 3 the most
My errors here. I used a hard plastic glue from Bostick. it doesn’t grip well enough on the top of the keyswitches. I glued everything, waited a few hours, half the keycaps didn’t stick
glued the rest, waited, half again didnt’ stick…rinse and repeat about 6 times, adding more glue till finally they all stuck.
The 2 part epoxy stuck fast and hard! – but I used too much.
The repeated adding of more glue caused the multiple key levels you can see in the picture
I’ll try one more time I think!
Time’s progressing and it’s still taking a long time to obtain a satisfactory print of my CAD keycaps. Some quotes have come in and…they’re quite a bit.
so, time to change focus for the short term to let me actually play games on the mini with all the keyboardy goodness that a working keyboard will allow
So, on to some butchering
The Plan….create a plaster of paris negative of the original keyboard – to hold the keys straight when attaching them.
Step 1 – Print out the case design from my last post
Fits like a glove……..or does it?
Step 2 – realise that I’m making a NEGATIVE and the keyboard needs to sit INSIDE the box, ‘upside down’ Redesign and re-print…
Step 3 – Coat liberally in spray oil… Wife wasn’t too happy that I’d used her pricey artisnal olive oil from our trip to Italy, nothing but the best for my Mini though………
Step 4 – Knock up a batch of
pancake batter Plaster of paris…About 50 grams of powder and 60ml water worked for mine….not too viscous.
Step 5 – Fill up the mould
Screw on the keyboard – making sure the keys are aligned and straight with the F Keys and wait overnight…
Use the holes either side to top up the plaster so it overflows a little
Give the whole combo a dozen or so short sharp drops / knocks on the table to free up any air bubbles