Keyboard Builders' Digest
Save 5% at pkkeyboards! Code: KBDNEWS
Keyboard Builders' Digest / Tips & Tricks


@tsukasa_metam's Cityscape48 is a pretty unique split keyboard with a multi-layer PCB construction to achieve a faux-keywell effect.
Published May 19, 2022
Creators! Feel free to tip me off about your keyboard related projects to bring them to 100K readers.

As 100-year-old patents suggest (e.g. here), we usually keep reinventing the same wheel even when we think we are doing something original.

However, @tsukasa_metam's Cityscape48 is really something I've never seen before: it achieves the keywell-effect by utilizing multiple layers of PCBs held together by screws. Correct me if I'm wrong, but as far as I know that's a pretty unique approach.

Other than being a structural element of the construction, the screws are also an integral part of the circuit itself, ensuring there is an electric connection between the boards.

There is a feature I would like to point out: The electric circuit between the boards is connected via screws – @tsukasa_metam.

Furthermore, these partial PCBs stacked on top of each other mimic not just a keywell but also a slight tenting.


The switches used were TTC low profile ones (ali) – thus the uncommon footprint and cutout – and the keycaps are flat F10 caps from Pimpmykeyboard.

Of course something similar in general could be achieved by using sculpted keycaps or a 3D-printed plate but there's more to this particular design than pure l'art pour l'art craftsmanship or aesthetics. According to the author, it helps preventing typos:

It was devised to prevent the mistyping I often make. With a normal keyboard, when I press the Q key, I press the A key at the same time. This is the kind of typo I often do. On this keyboard, the key travel is 3.2mm and the step height is 2.8mm. Even if I press the Q key to the bottom, the A key is not entered – @tsukasa_metam.

Unfortunately, the PCB is not in the public domain, but @tsukasa_metam's thread on Twitter may start you off and point you in the right direction.

Do you like this post? Share, donate, subscribe, tip me off!

Published on Thu 19th May 2022. Featured in KBD #79.


An ergo split called the Solergo

The Solergo is a wireless ergo split by SouthPawEngineer with Bluetooth via ZMK, and has solar trickle charging to top up and extend the battery life.

Dactylria: a Dactyl ManuForm fork

Dactylria - a Dactyl ManuForm fork with thumbs inspired by Kyria and Keyboardio Model 01 by jchendy with source (git).

Phase keyboard

Kyria stagger, Corne thumb cluster, Ferris-inspired electronics: Phase by mjpauly.


The Pohjola Works Sotka is an ortholinear split keyboard with an optional extra row.


LoyalPotato's open-source Yggdrasil is a 36-key split keyboard with some extreme pinky splay.

Yucu 2000

The Yucu 2000 by u/Cu3b is a 38-40 key 'super staggered' split keyboard with single-key PCBs.