Oblotzky's write-up on visiting GMK's new production facility.
Published July 3, 2022
Some interesting reading material from Oblotzky who, among other well-regarded community members, took part in a workshop at the Uniqey/GMK HQ in Germany last week.
On June 23rd 2022, I traveled with t0mb3ry across Germany to visit GMK's Headquarters as they invited us to show us around their company and asked for our assistance in some new developments – Oblotzky.
Here are some highlights from the post:
- New production facility.
- Nine new injection molding machines – which is roughly 200% the capacity of the first factory (that also continues to produce keycaps).
- Six different sets were producing in parallel during the visit.
- GMK has created 895 custom plastic colors, of which 565 ended up being used for various designs
- GMK's library counts almost 7,000 different legends
- Production runs 24/6, except for holidays, in three shifts.
- Four full-time employees are solely responsible for maintaining the machines and also constantly creating fresh tooling using in-house CNC milling machines.
- GMK is committed to working through the current backlog. Reasonable lead times are expected by 2023.
- Custom keycaps has grown to be half of the company's yearly revenue.
- From 2019 to 2020 and from 2021 to 2022, the amount of keycaps produced has roughly doubled.
- In this year's first six months, they have already almost reached the production volume of last year.
- The target is 16 weeks for sets that don't require color matching – from the order being placed to the palettes leaving the warehouse.
- GMK has invested into a custom built sorting machine that will sort 1,000 base kits a day, running day and night.
Read the full article here:
(According to Zambumon, the photos were taken by Mario, who works at GMK.)
On a similar note, GMK_Andy also posted on r/mk about this event and the lead times, material shortage, etc. as well:
[…]last month saw the highest output in the history of the company! The new machines we ordered over a year ago are up and running in the new facility, further speeding up the output. We believe that the longer lead times have peaked, and we should start seeing these lead times start to progressively get shorter. Despite ongoing issues within the supply-chain, we managed to acquire a decent stockpile of raw material, which will cover many pending projects already ([https://www.reddit.com/r/MechanicalKeyboards/comments/vp5o0z/july_gmk_update/|source]]).