Keyboard Builders' Digest
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Keyboard Builders' Digest / Editorial

Behind the scenes #150

Keyboard projects, quick news, in the mailbox, meetups, new vendors and discount codes!

Published January 12, 2024
Creators! Feel free to tip me off about your keyboard related projects to bring them to 100K readers.

Hey, what's up everyone!

If you are new to, you can read how this started out and what this is all about nowadays. If you like what you see, subscribe to the newsletter (free) and donate some bucks to keep this otherwise free and ad-free project alive.

Posts I thought are worth sharing this time:

Pic: Promenade


  • I spent a lot of time with compiling this piece: With the Promenade, Krado Industries tries to resurrect the Boardwalk, an ortho board with 1.5u Ergodox modifiers, and I looked into the history of this layout.
  • Joshua Chung's Saturn is a pretty sick monoblock split PCB with chunky hotswap controllers via DB25 parallel connectors.

Pic: Saturn by Joshua Chung

Saturn by Joshua Chung

  • A tented monoblock case of Churn, a handwired split by Luke Schutt.
  • The SS Centurion, a 39-key monoblock split with a trackball, is the latest keyboard by Protieusz.

Pic: SS Centurion

SS Centurion

  • Salvatore La Bua's Saru48W+ is a handwired 13x4 ortholinear keyboard in a nice case.
  • Retrospective: I just rediscovered the eek! by Klackygears, this unibody split with brutal 90 degree angle from 2020.

Pic: Soufflé


  • Soufflé v3.1 released. Jesus Climent added a new pin for Nice!View compatibility.
  • The Archaeoptereeks (successor of the eek!) by klackygears makes me smile every time I see it. Such a fun creation!

Pic: Archaeoptereeks


Pic: I especially like the teeth of the crazy bird

I especially like the teeth of the crazy bird



Pic: Azeron derivative

Azeron derivative

  • Art: FLKB, a wooden style (3D printed) Dactyl keyboard by Least-Composer.



Speaking of shops, commercial stuff and group buys, as you know, I try to avoid featuring them. That said, this resulted in some missing keyboards from, ones that became popular and unavoidable sometime after their release. So while the main focus will be always open-source, I may include interesting for-profit projects every now and then, like the Promenade this time.

In the spirit of this, I could just barf here some Japanese projects – no way I can track down as much detail as with boards documented in English, but these are usually not open-source:

Piroridon's CygSUS has a unique column curvature, inspired by the Willow layout – built by sam1dare.

Pic: CygSUS


The low-pro ortho LALA50 by Cerbekos comes in a neat CNC alu case, but I like the nude PCB just as much.

Pic: LALA50 PCB by Cerbekos

LALA50 PCB by Cerbekos

Giveaway feedback

Hey, feel free to post the stuff you receive or to send me some pics about the goodies you won, like Gavin did with his custom keycap/keychain offered and made by GoblinTechkeys.

Boardwalk, DR-70F

I delved into the history of the Boardwalk keyboard on the occasion of the Promenade group buy. The article is very long, but I really enjoyed the investigation. Thanks to all the contributors: Shens, Matt, David, etc. There's even more to this saga, but I was asked to not publish some details.

If anyone is reading this from, please check your spam folder. ;)

Other than that, I was building and reviewing the DR-70F by DaringRun. This really is a fantastic slab of aluminum. The review is pretty much ready for publication, I just don't know if I should wait until the board is available in the shop.

Pic: Building the DR-70F

Building the DR-70F

Pic: DR-70F on a Coral deskmat

DR-70F on a Coral deskmat


For all the donation options check out the donation page!

In the mailbox

The Ergohaven HPD has arrived – slightly damaged. I can't imagine what forces the pure board was exposed to during shipping, but a small part of the plate broke, along with a keycap, leaving the stem on the switch. Evgeny was very professional, looked into my photos and started to think about how the packaging could be improved despite this was the first and only such unfortunate case. And he also promised me a replacement despite the fact that this was a free sample and it also works, really just a small piece of the plate and a cap are broken. I could probably fix it with some glue and by replacing a cap.

Btw, the keywell is very comfy, and the tactile switches were a pleasant surprise too.

Stats mystery

After normano's question on keebtalk I delved into Google Analytics and possibly figured out what happened in late December (the mysterious peak in visitors but not pageviews). My guess is that the higher-res photo of my vintage collection made some rounds on its own after posting it on Dec 28. Maybe somebody reposted it in a popular sub or elsewhere. This would explain the increase in unique users (CDN) without registering more pageloads (GA) – only loading a single jpg through a direct link.

Meetup database

Some upcoming and recently added events in the meetup database:

Upcoming meetups (1):

Recently added (2):

As always, this meetup database is both a calendar and an archive so feel free to send me upcoming events or even ones from the recent past to make this collection as comprehensive as possible.

Vendors & Discounts

New shops and updates to the database of keyboard vendors this week:


  • One step closer to automation. I really have to cut back on time spent with administration and repetitive stuff so started to try to generate more and more parts of the newsletter and editorial from the database (e.g. imminent and newly added meetups this time).


That's all for today. Thanks for checking by. As always: Keep learning and building!

Until next time,

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Published on Fri 12th Jan 2024. Featured in KBD #150.


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