Image Map Image Map
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Thread: New Apple 2 keyboard replacement

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    347

    Default New Apple 2 keyboard replacement

    My recent project may be of interest to Apple II owners, and I'd like to share it. I've been working on an ASCII keyboard that can be used in general for the Apple II, as well as other retrocomputers. Here's a photo of the keyboard configured for Apple II. The keyboard has connectors for Apple II/II+ and for the Apple 1. It supports two different types of keymaps for the Apple II: All CAPS, and Upper/Lower with the repeat key used as a capslock. However, the keymaps can be modified to pretty much anything. This keyboard supports CTRL+BREAK for the /RESET signal, and also supports CLEAR on the Apple 1.

    The keyboard can use Cherry MX keys, or Futaba MD4-PCS keys (which I prefer).

    I do have to make a couple of modifications still, to make the keyboard fit properly in the Apple II case, but that will happen soon. The whole project is up on GitHub:

    https://github.com/osiweb/unified_retro_keyboard

    apple2kbd.jpg

  2. #2

    Default

    I don't have an Apple II but I have to commend you on your very nice work.
    Daniel P. Cayea - The Lyon Mountain Company - Plattsburgh, New York 12901
    Vintage Equipment: IBM 5150 * IBM 5161 * ThinkPad 770ED
    Modern Equipment: MacBook Pro 13 * Alienware M15R3

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    2,880

    Default

    So this is a drop in replacement for the II and II plus? Where do you find keycaps or do you have to use original. I only ask because IIe and newer keycaps can be found but II and II plus are not as easy and expensive. I have a II plus missing the square (flush) power lamp cover and cant find anyone who has one for under $40+

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    347

    Default

    Yes, this is a drop-in replacement. I had the keycaps custom made. It would be great if these fit the original keys, but unfortunately they don't. Also, this keycap set uses a regular keycap for the POWER key, and so wouldn't fit the original keyboard with flush cover.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Penticton, B.C.
    Posts
    198

    Default

    I wish someone more talented than me would make a cherry-key replacement for the Atari ST. What a mushy turd that keyboard becomes after they're worn in.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    2,880

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dfnr2 View Post
    Yes, this is a drop-in replacement. I had the keycaps custom made. It would be great if these fit the original keys, but unfortunately they don't. Also, this keycap set uses a regular keycap for the POWER key, and so wouldn't fit the original keyboard with flush cover.
    Can you give some details about how much that set you back and is there a shared design they have on file if someone else wanted to purchase the same thing?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    347

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by VERAULT View Post
    Can you give some details about how much that set you back and is there a shared design they have on file if someone else wanted to purchase the same thing?
    With a volume discount, the keycap set set me back about $65/set, including shipping and tax, and I'm making them available for $65/set if anyone wants one. The set includes more keys than needed for any one keyboard, in order to be useful for many different configurations.

    There are also some volume savings to be had for the PCBs, and I'll likely be stocking PCB sets for those who want them. That would include the keyboard PCB, cherry and futaba aligners, and choice of encoder with a surface mount microcontroller (ATMega2560) or through-hole (ATMega328P) but more chips.

    Everything is open source, and available on Github, including the PCB design files and gerbers, the firmware, and the specs for the keycaps.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    2,880

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dfnr2 View Post
    With a volume discount, the keycap set set me back about $65/set, including shipping and tax, and I'm making them available for $65/set if anyone wants one. The set includes more keys than needed for any one keyboard, in order to be useful for many different configurations.

    There are also some volume savings to be had for the PCBs, and I'll likely be stocking PCB sets for those who want them. That would include the keyboard PCB, cherry and futaba aligners, and choice of encoder with a surface mount microcontroller (ATMega2560) or through-hole (ATMega328P) but more chips.

    Everything is open source, and available on Github, including the PCB design files and gerbers, the firmware, and the specs for the keycaps.
    Just curious, why don't you build and sell complete keyboard assemblies and price accordingly? There is a need of course.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    347

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by VERAULT View Post
    Just curious, why don't you build and sell complete keyboard assemblies and price accordingly? There is a need of course.
    Mainly because I just don't have the time. However, I am happy to answer questions or otherwise digitally help out anyone out who is interested in building up a keyboard. Perhaps there might be some among us who might be able to do some soldering to help out an internet friend or two. . .

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Dallas, TX
    Posts
    347

    Default

    Here's a photo of the latest rev. The PCB mounting holes had to be adjusted a bit because I didn't realize that the mounting screws are slightly angled, which changes the distance of the mounting holes when mounted on standoffs.

    mounted_keyboard.jpgkeyboard_test.jpg

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •