Keyboard Builders' Digest
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Issue 125 / Week 25 / 2023

This is a hand-picked selection of last week's content from a keyboard enthusiast's perspective. Posts that may teach you something, make you think and contribute to the common knowledge of the DIY builder community.

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Behind the Scenes of Issue 125

New realities, running into r/mk refugees in unexpected places, Snow White's coffin, Zombie Kitchen, imgur fame, etc.

Hey y'all,

Adapting to the new realities of the post-reddit era is still going on, but I'm getting there. The most important thing: feel free to contact me if you have a cool project to share!


Welcome back for another edition of Keyboard Builders' Digest (this time Issue #125), a weekly fortnightly regular irregular roundup of this DIY keyboard focused newsletter and blog from Tamas Dovenyi – that's me. If you are new to this, 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.


Hit play for this week's unwanted song suggestion. Dream Theater's Hell's Kitchen performed by PSMS. Read on to see why.

Quick links

  • Mett3o's MTNU intro. I may write a post about this later, but I haven't had time to process the rather long video yet.
Hey just a heads-up, tomorrow I'll host a stream about everything MTNU. I'll talk about ergonomics, materials, colors, sound and all – Matt3o.

And I was sent some other projects which I may feature next week. Thanks to everyone who contacted me with tip-offs.

r/ergomk, vote, lemmy, etc.

So r/ErgoMechKeyboards, one of my go-to subs to harvest cool keyboard designs went read-only indefinitely in support of the reddit API strike. (r/mk is locked too, however, it hasn't been that useful of a source for some time, in particular if you wanted to sniff for novelties and open-source projects.)

OBOSOB asked the r/ergomk community about the future of the sub, and most members decided that it should stay restricted. There's a new sister community over at lemmy:

There are some glitches, but there's already a good atmosphere:

Pic: Photo: OBOSOB


Make sure you check by and say hi.

In the mailbox: Siemens T4000

After the KBDcraft Addams (there wasn't a newsletter since I got this from BoyU so check out this post or my previous editorial if you are interested in LEGO-compatible keyboard accessories or hear of this for the first time) I spotted, bought and finally received a mysterious Siemens keyboard.

Pic: Siemens T4000 keyboard

Siemens T4000 keyboard

I haven't bought anything, not even vintage stuff, for some time, but couldn't resist this beauty with all the toggle switches – and an actual key.

As it turned out, it's a Siemens T4000, part of the T4200 word-processor/teletex system, manufactured in the '80s.

Beside the post I also uploaded my Siemens photos to imgur, and the gallery was seen by 4K people. Given my previous posts there resulted in zero upvotes and comments, and maybe attracted about a dozen visitors, this popularity was a pleasant surprise. It turned out that many r/mk refugees hang out there. (Now that I check my posts in incognito mode, I can't even see them although they are all set to public. This may be one reason for the inactivity and lack of feedback...)


I made a mistake though. Wasn't aware that temporarily hiding the gallery resets the comments. So after swapping two photos, many comments were gone. That's why I can't properly reference the commenter who misread the legend "Kombizeichen" for "Zombie Kitchen", which is indeed a great name for a garage band. I couldn't get this out of my head and ended up binge listening Hell's Kitchen by DT.

Vendor database

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

  • Many thanks to Vadym (Vkeycaps) who, apparently having too much free time, checked all the 500 vendor links in the database – and identified about 50 unreachable urls and abandoned shops. In fact, he wrote a script to do the job, so hopefully this checkup will be regular. Many of the dead links pointed to shops already marked as "closed" and were kept for historical reasons only. Regardless, still dozens of entries will have to be removed. Give me a few days for this.

Meetup database

No new entries and updates to the database of keyboard meetups this time, but feel free to send me upcoming events or even ones from the recent past to make this collection as comprehensive as possible.


  • Alex Havermale donated to the cause after I featured his Theseus75 (you don't have to do this guys, but thanks anyway!), and Spencer Dabell joined the ranks of regular donors! Thank you!
  • And it seems I lost two regular donors so the balance is in the negative.
  • Many thanks to everyone who supported this project in any of its development stages.

Maintaining this site takes much more energy and time than my fulltime job does. It really does. (According to last year's Reddit Recap stats that was 100 hours per month on Reddit only.) If you'd like and can afford to help, here is the donation form.


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

Until next time, Tamás

PSA: In lieu of a new issue

Reddit meltdown and its effects on Send me your projects. New shops, discounts, meetups, etc.

The reddit blackout is both dauting and liberating. I'm working on various keyboard-related things, but coming up with original content takes much more time than processing your exemplarly crafted reddit posts or github repos.

Send me your projects!

So feel free to ping me and send me a link to your cool keyboard project what you'd usually share on e.g. r/ergomk. I already received some mails and tip-offs so the blog will be back on track soon.

Reddit meltdown

Since I heavily rely (relied?) on Reddit to collect most of the news and keep track of open-source projects, all the relevant subs going dark on June 12th made my work quite impossible, at least the way it was's been done for nearly three years. Many valuable reddit subs are gone, and even my bookmarks disappeared.


While I didn't even know of the third-party apps and tools used by mods this fight is for, I absolutely understand the rage, so in absence of r/mk, r/ergomk and others subs, feel free to contact me directly with your project or ping me with any interesting url with the usual keyboard stuff you think would fit

If the recent happenings have taught me anything, it's that I have to diversify my sources. Unfortunately, I can't turn a single photo shared on Twitter, IG, whatever platform into a proper post. Reddit was the right thing for this kind of aggregation imo. Adapting to the new realities is in progress but it takes some time, so don't be shy and feel free to reach out to me anytime.

Drop article about splits – written on a LEGO Adam :)

So Drop asked me if I'd write an article for their blog, and I accepted the challenge. It's a real honor to be able to follow in the footsteps of community members and industry players like ThereminGoat, GMK_Andy and The_Manic_Geek.

The article will be a short introduction to split and ergo boards, nothing serious. Apparently, the target audience over on Drop is not the DIY-minded creator but a much more general keyboard enthusiast who's never touched or seen a split before.

The cover image choice made me a headache though, because I don't think I had a split collection decent enough to represent the scene. In fact, I designed my first split for myself so I've never felt the urge to buy any other split. Despite all of this, it turned out I have about a dozen split models. Some of my original monoblock prototypes, two Microsoft ergo keyboards belonging to my vintage collection (Gen1 MS Natural from 1994), then I received the K:02 from Ergohaven, a Glove80 from MoErgo, the TWS from Keebmonkey, and also won a few times in Don's podcast when I had the opportunity to choose anything from Keebio, among others an Iris and a Levinson.


So to shot a photo for the cover I decided to haul all my splits into a heap, and because of this protracted photo shoot took ages, and I managed to break some solder joints of my handwired daily driver during the process, I ended up with typing on a KBDCraft Adam for a few days.

And actually, I loved it. Sure, living in Central Europe and using all those funky accented characters, the 60% ANSI layout was a pain in the butt, but the Adam is Vial compatible so creating a SpaceFN layer with my usual number and navigation part went like a dream, which left only the horizontal staggering as a major drawback for someone who's spent his last five years on a columnar split. I really have to write a review of this Adam kit. I already teased the idea of integrating it into my kids' Harry Potter castle but wasn't in the mood thus far. Nevertheless, BoyU is kind enough to send me all the updates, his newest numpad is on the way as well has just arrived, so I might dig up some LEGO in the near future.

In the mailbox

After reading my invitation on twitter, Robin from Chosfox offered me some of his products to review. In addition, I purchased a mysterious vintage behemoth of a keyboard yesterday – my first such acquisition for months I guess. On its way. And the Addams arrived:

KBDcraft Addams

As already told, BoyU keeps sending me his cool LEGO-compatible keyboard models, this time the Addams, a versatile gasket-mounted and hotswappable brick numpad with all the necessary parts plus a cute red coiled cable and an extra Minecraft figure. Which means the content of the box is even better than it was last time.

Pre-lubed switches in a cool sealed jar, pre-lubed JWK stabilizers, poron gaskets, double-shot keycaps.


More photos on imgur.

The booklet is still not entirely perfect, it has some funny sentences, but you can absolutely rely on it this time, and this particular build is very straightforward anyways.

It's good to see that someone with a good idea and business skills can not only come up with a whole ecosystem of boards but also with a long-term concept: e.g. the Addams numpad offers multiple layouts and can be combined with the original 60% Adams and also the wrist rests in many ways – It's not just a companion but add-on ("Add-ams").

(As usual: use the KBDNEWS discount code for 5% off.)

Logical layout design

I dug up my long-forgotten logical layout optimization project. It's a suit of scripts and various in-browser tools to process and analyze large chunks of texts, to evaluate layouts, and optimize your custom layout tailored to your typing habits. It took me a whole day to figure out what (and how) exactly I did years ago. After this forensic phase I managed to finish a brand new script with the goal to visualize the differences in typing difficulty, comparing two layouts.

Pic: QWERTY vs Colemak – Illustrating typing difficulty

QWERTY vs Colemak – Illustrating typing difficulty

If reddit won't be back for some time, I'm quite confident that I'll be able to publish these scripts along with a series of posts about logical layout design, my original field of interest before I even heard of mechanical keyboards.

I have to work on the UX, bring all the settings and options to the gui from obscure config files and directly edited js variables, include some popular physical layouts, languages, fixing bugs, optimizing speed... So coming soon. ;)

Vendor database

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

  • I don't usually feature artisan makers but made an exception this time. Vadym from Vkeycaps contacted me from Odesa, Ukraine, and offered you a 10% discount (KBDNEWS). Support him if you can.
  • HellCaps and Studio Greenfield removed, the sites were unavailable as Vadym pointed out. Thanks!

Meetup database

New entries and updates to the database of keyboard meetups:

  • Madison MK Meetup 2023 (Jul 22) added (thanks Vianney!).
  • The next ClackyCon (Den Haag, NL, Sep 30) has been announced (thanks Yoran!)
  • キー部 5% (Tokyo, Jul 15) added, however it's already sold out.
  • And there was the ATO meetup in Kuala Lumpur (May 20), DonKyu (thanks!) reported this while I was on holiday which I totally forgot to mention in the last issue. Check out the post-event gallery for some pics.

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.


Maintaining this site takes much more energy and time than my fulltime job does. I mean it. (According to last year's Reddit Recap stats that was 100 hours per month on Reddit only.) If you'd like and can afford to help, here is the donation form.

Thanks and cheers, Tamás


Osprette V3

The Osprette V3 is the third revision of Sam Mohr's 34-key unibody keyboard.

Here is the Osprette V3 by Sam Mohr aka S'mores/smores56. The third revision of the Osprette is a 34-key unibody keyboard that runs on any Pro Micro compatible daughterboard. It comes with bluetooth support by way of battery terminals and a power switch.

Originally based on Brow's Balbuzard, Sam found that adding some extra space between the halves, rearranging the thumb cluster, ditching some keys, increasing the pinky stagger, and adding a power switch for bluetooth may result in a better design for himself.

I am a big fan of the Balbuzard, especially the secret choc version that Brow sent to me. However, there were some things I wanted to change – S'mores.


The V3 is an amalgam of the author's favorite bits from other boards:

  • Splay and stagger from the Clog V2.
  • 50 degree inner angle from the Balbuzard
  • Wide primary thumb keys like Le Chiffre
  • New outline contrasting splayed keys with octagonal angles, inspired by Geist's TOTEM
  • Asymmetric controller placement from the Reviung series
  • Solder-only (no hotswap sockets) and no mounting holes from iamnotyourbroom's KISS philosophy



After teasing it earlier, Jason Hazel redesigned and published the Chaz, a cute Choc-spaced QAZ-alike.

The Chaz, this gorgeous little sub-40%, is a Choc-spaced, low-profile QAZ-alike. Teasing it in April, designer Jason Hazel aka quirk wrote:

Prototypes are functional, but mounting was screwed up. Just submitted a revision with different mounting and added battery support while at it. Now off to start re-designing the case.

Since the original post on r/mk, Jason has iterated a bit and has released the source.


  • QAZ layout
  • 37 keys
  • Choc spacing, low profile
  • Pro Micro footprint
  • Battery support



An open-source and easy-to-build steno keyboard for use with Plover: Peridot by Ewen Cluney.

The Peridot is an open-source steno keyboard for use with Plover, designed by Ewen Cluney from Weirdlittlekeebs, meant to be easy to build with standard DIY mechanical keyboard components.

There are now several steno keyboard designs, but I wanted to make one that was simple and open source, both to fill that particular niche and to give something back to the Plover community – nekoewen.

If you’re not familiar with stenography, check out the Open Steno Project for links to the free software, learning resources, and other info to help you get started.


  • Pro Micro compatible
  • supports both MX and Choc switches
  • through-hole components
  • has the option to add an LED strip for underglow


  • The design is open-source: GitHub repo
  • PCBs available on Etsy, where Ewen will periodically put pre-built ones up for sale as well.

Le Chiffre

A retrospective post about Le Chiffre, a minimalist monoblock split designed and open sourced by tominabox1 – 3 years ago.

The Le Chiffre (ironically, "the number" in French) was designed and open sourced by TJ aka tominabox1 – 3 years ago. Yep, this is one of those retrospective posts featuring designs which predate but became household names at some point, at least in the hobby.

This minimal monoblock split board inspired projects like somepin's La Lettre or Sam's Osprette v3, so I thought it deserved a dedicated post.

Le Chiffre is a keyboard meant to use as little keys as possible while still keeping a practical amount of functionality for those ready to flex their QMK skills – P3D Store.

The purpose of the board is to provide a platform for MX and Choc ergo (Alps support too!) in one package for when ones wrists need a break. The board supports an RGB LED strip with DI on port F0. The board is also fitted with support for run-of-the-mill .91" OLED and EC11 rotary encoder.

In the repo you can also find case files made by Jake of



Flow is a product line of sculpted split keyboards by Jason Allan – with the flow-MX36 being released and the flow-choc40 in development.

Jason Allan aka @Drudge/jsallan shared the files of his flow-MX36, the first member of the flow product line. This is an MX-based keyboard, 36 keys with integrated trackball.

Hi folks, I’ve been working on this keyboard pretty much since January of this year, and I’ve finally got it to the point that I can call it done! If you’d like to build one, all files are available here – Jason.

The top design considerations of this keyboard series are:

  • proven comfort from previous split designs of the author, e.g. the MX Dacty-based Minidox and choc Trinidox
  • trackball mandatory for enhanced convenience
  • a finished look, e.g. hidden switches, smooth lines, hidden plate etc.



  • 36 keys
  • integrated 34mm trackball using the PMW3360 sensor
  • ceramic trackball bearings
  • options for both choc v1 switches and MX switches
  • USB-C interlink cable
  • trays for various microcontrollers – Pi Pico and Pro Micro (in dev)


The Github page has a bunch of details, part list with links and guild guides:


Kiencovn shared the files of his matmat35, a cute handwired keyboard with a QAZ/HHKB layout.

This little cutie is matmat35, a handwired keyboard design by kiencovn aka kienkhuat, combining the QAZ 11u and HHKB layouts.

The acrylic bottom piece, which helps to show off the handwiring, was inspired by Dieter Rams's Braun Phonosuper SK 4 "Snow White's Coffin", designed in the 1950s.

The STL files for 3d printing are included in the repo, just like the controller mount (it was designed for a Pro Micro controller with USB type-C connector, which has a slightly longer PCB than traditional one with micro usb).


The flower pattern used for laser carving on the bottom part is depicting a Rangoon creeper, one of the author's favorites.


Tips & Tricks

Stampy controller

An RP2040-based controller for handwiring keyboards: Stampy by Keebio.

Heavily inspired by the Postage Board Mini by LifeIsOnTheWire, Keebio's Danny came up with Stampy, an RP2040-based version recommended for handwired builds.

(Don't confuse it with the Stamp.)

What is Stampy?

In contrast to other development boards like the Pro Micro, Elite-C, and dozens of other controllers featured on this blog, Stampy gets soldered directly to 3 switches, meaning that no extra space below the controller is needed.

Another sign that this devboard was designed specifically for keyboards is that 3 pins are preset for columns, and 1 pin is preset for a row, so in fact you get a 3-button macropad PCB.


  • RP2040 microcontroller
  • 16Mbit (2MB) of flash memory
  • MX-compatible
  • 26 available I/O pins
  • USB Type-C connector
  • QMK-compatible


  • GPIO pins available: 0-8, 10, 11, 14-28.
  • 4 of the pins are connected to the 3 switch footprints: GPIO14 (row0), GPIO11 (col0, left switch), GPIO10 (col1, center switch), GPIO15 (col2, right switch).
  • The reset button is connected to RST and 3.3V (not GND).
  • Due to the tight spacing of components, you will have to clip some plastic pins of 5-pin switches.


CRP-X keycap profile

Created by Hammer & Buger.Work, CRP-X is a new uniform keycap profile with stepped modifiers and flippable caps.

I spotted the Parallel Worlds keycap set on Drop. Only renders, but let me temporarily relax my rules of what I feature on this blog: a new keycap profile is definitely something worth making an exception for.

So created by Hammer and designed in partnership with Buger.Work, the Parallel Worlds is the first example of a set coming in the CRP-X profile.

The CRP-X keycap profile is "semi-flat", with sharper top edges and the top surface somewhere between DSA and XDA, but it also reminds me of a uniform MDA.

The Parallel Worlds Keycap Set is like no other keycap set you’ve likely seen—in form and in function. First, the beige-gray color scheme with pops of primary colors hearkens back to the classic terminals of the ‘80s and ‘90s, delivering both nostalgia and computational history in one go – Drop.

And from there things take a turn for the unfamiliar.


Caps of this set feature both US and "international" legends. Just like any uniform keycap, these caps can be flipped upside down, but this time you have an alternative set of legends. For most people this will be purely aesthetic since there's no general "international" layout I guess – or am I missing something? We poor souls cursed with all those funny accented characters have symbols in different places depending on our languages.

And seeing the pictures, flipping works only for the modifiers and some numbers, at least the sublegends of the alphas and most numbers are oriented the same way as the primary legends. But it's a nice touch anyway.


  • Designed by Hammer & Buger.Work
  • Profile: CRP-X (reversible)
  • Material: Thermal sublimated PBT
  • Compatible with Cherry MX switches and clones
  • Estimated shipping date is Dec 25, 2023.



Siemens T4000 (T4200)

The Siemens T4200 is a kick-ass electronic screen-typewriter system from the '80s with a not less kick-ass keyboard: the Siemens T4000.


As it often happens, I bought something because it looked interesting while I had no idea what it was exactly.

This beauty was patiently waiting for a new owner on a local classified site, for weeks, before I finally gave in. Unfortunately, I only have the keyboard, which made my initial attempts to dig up more info on it quite hard in the beginning. The "Siemens schreibmaschine" keyword eventually revealed the solution. (Thanks for the tip inozenz!)

Pic: Source: elka

Source: elka

This Siemens Tastatur 4000 was part of the Siemens T4200, which is kind of an early word-processor and electric typewriter system with a bulky printer and a cute little screen – used to print, edit and store texts, as well as to communicate via teletex.

Teletex (not telex, not teletext)

I'm old enough to remember the days of telex, telefax and teletext, but as of my understanding, teletex is a different service and technology, an upgrade to the telex service with increased transmission speeds. And in the '80s, having a Siemens T4200 granted you access to both telex and teletex services.

Pic: Siemens T4200 (photo by Marion Kaiser)

Siemens T4200 (photo by Marion Kaiser)

The keyboard

Even without the screen and printer, this keyboard has some pretty interesting features starting with the physical key, the array of toggle switches and the way it's assembled together to the mechanism adjusting the typing angle.

Pic: Siemens Tastatur 4000

Siemens Tastatur 4000

The key

OK, I have to admit this was the selling-point convincing me about this purchase: an actual physical key. Before I knew what this keyboard was used for I thought the key was kind of a safety measure to turn on the system, but it's more for selecting the operation mode.


Toggle switches

While the 10 black switches lining up at the top part of the keyboard look the same, they are actually very different. Some have two positions, some others three. Some are springy momentary switches with linear feel, jumping back to their neutral position after flipping them, some other toggle switches are tactile. Some click in one or more positions.



The board features Siemens's in-house STB 11 switches. These linear metal lief switches with 4mm travel, 75cN actuation, and the Siemens logo where introduced in 1980.

Deskthority has a page for these switches showing the internals and pointing to the actual Siemens patent.

Pic: Siemens D11 keyswitch

Siemens D11 keyswitch

Well, they are very scratchy, but relatively low-profile ones for the standards – or better said standard-less times – of the early '80s.


The caps are double-shot, their shape is similar to those I've seen on other Siemens, Tandberg and Reuters boards, or even the MX-compatible Doys and BLOCK caps, but still slightly different: if you look closer, they are circular at the base – with oval top surfaces.


The caps are said to be RAFI mount, with 5x5mm square stems. As OleVoip pointed out, a similar switch with compatible stem was patented in 1975 by RAFI.

However, the mount may be older and may have been invented not by RAFI at all. But for all we know, RAFI were the first to use it with a low-profile switch; that's why we call it the RAFI mount – OleVoip.


The keycaps of the left function and right navigation cluster are flat, many of them with indicator LEDs.


Adjusting the typing angle

This is so cool. No flipping legs, but a clever system to adjust the typing angle seamlessly.

Pic: Setting the typing angle

Setting the typing angle


Screwless assembly

Beside maybe four screws, two of them fixing the display to the PCB, I haven't met any screws inside this keyboard. The top and bottom plastic parts of the case are held together by a springy mechanism, and a similar method is used to clamp the plate and PCB to the bottom case: thick springy wires lock the parts firmly in place.

Pic: No screws

No screws


Built-in manual

While it's called "manual" (Bedienungsanleitung), the hard plastic sheet concealed in the case is rather a cheat sheet you can pull out and use as a quick reference.

Pic: Here..



Pic: ...comes!


Typing test

This is not my video, but dragonforces made a good job introducing the functions of the T4200 as well as providing a short typing demo (from 1:13):




Alex is working on his Theseus75, a 75% split mechanical keyboard kit with USB hub and LEMO interconnection.

The Theseus75, a 75% split mechanical keyboard kit by Alex Havermale aka haversnail will come, among other interesting features, with a USB hub and LEMO interconnection.

(Yep, this is a IC/GB – extraordinary times without Reddit call for extraordinary measures.)

For the PCB design Alex teamed up with Moritz "ebastler" Plattner (whose name might be familiar as the creator of the Osprey). This particular project has been around since last October, but it has evolved a lot and deviated from the original idea considerably, thus the name refers to the Ship of Theseus problem, a thought experiment often quoted in this hobby:

When I started this project, it was intended to be a humble hand-wired split with a wooden case – however once I started sharing the design with some of my peers in the hobby, they recommended opening an IC. From there it took on a life of its own, and since then it's evolved into a pretty ambitious board. […] The name for this board was born out of the many times I've started this project over from scratch: rebuild after rebuild, was it still the same board I started with? Figured I'd leave that one to the philosophers – Alex.

Pic: SLA printed Theseus75 prototype

SLA printed Theseus75 prototype

In a quest for his "endgame", Alex was inspired by several boards already on the market, and the Theseus75 is his attempt to assemble all the features he liked into the form of a high-end, the function of a 75%, and the flexibility of a split keyboard.

My very first splurge board (though my definition of "splurge" has changed wildly over the years) was the GMMK Pro, so the 75% layout has always felt natural to me. I've always been a sucker for the U-80 aesthetic, so smooth boards with thick bezels (like the Paragon) also caught my eye. Similarly, I drew from the KL-90 for layout, the Sinc for split hot-swap, and the Mammoth75 for that marbly sound – each has offered a little inspiration in some form or another.

Pic: Milled Theseus75 prototype

Milled Theseus75 prototype

The original plan was to make the case by hand out of hardwood, but after diving further into the keyboard atelier rabbit hole, finding the right materials and manufacturers to mill such a complex piece out of wood just hasn't been tenable. After modeling and rendering an aluminum frame with several color finishes, the project lives on as a CNC milled aluminum board.


  • 6° typing angle
  • 20mm front height (~36.6mm overall height)
  • Exploded navigation + macro column
  • Two Alps EC11 rotary encoders w/ 1.5mm push-button switch
  • Magnetic interlocking
  • LEMO-compatible 1B 5-pin interconnect
  • Embedded USB 2.0 hub (useful for Yubikey, Logi Receiver, etc.)
  • Custom USB-C daughterboards (uDB S1 form factor)
  • ANSI hot-swap or ANSI/ISO solder PCB
  • RGB Underglow
  • QMK/VIA compatibility
  • Gasket mount design
  • 6063 aluminum frame
  • Frosted polycarbonate base

Alex is excited about two things specifically:

  • It's a split design with integrated USB 2.0 hubs, so that the "spare" USB port not connected to the host can actually be used as a downstream data port (@ebastler has put a lot of thought into the PCB design so that everything meets specs and most edge-cases are accounted for.) The team plans on open-sourcing the architecture after the run is completed.
  • For the interconnect, Alex decided on panel-mount LEMO connectors (after experimenting with GX-16s earlier on in the design). – "By nature, a connector like that doesn't come without its challenges, but I couldn't get over how it looked sitting on the back of the board!"

Pic: LEMO connector of the Theseus75 CNC prototype

LEMO connector of the Theseus75 CNC prototype

Since the project has been around for months, I was curious about the progress:

Are there any updates you could share?

I try to publish monthly updates on my Discord server, though to be fair I missed last month – but after several weeks of work, I'm excited to share that the first PCB prototypes just finished production! Integrating spec-compliant USB hubs into a split board has been no small task, so I want to give Moritz (@ebastler) a huge shout-out for his meticulous work.

What are you working on right now?

Since I'm currently waiting on the next batch of prototypes from the manufacturer, I've been continuing vendor and content-creator outreach as I fine-tune things like fitment and alignment. I haven't committed to any public timeline or launch date just yet, as I'd much rather underpromise and overdeliver – but my goal has been to keep the gears turning so that there's a continuous stream of updates to share with the community. As a web developer by day, I've also been working on a little project page in the interim, so I'm very much looking forward to sharing once it's complete. :)

More info

That was Issue #125. Thanks for stopping by.

This issue was made possible by the support of:, MoErgo Glove80, u/chad3814, MKUltra, Aiksplace, @keebio, Upgrade Keyboards, Cyboard, @kaleid1990, Sean Grady, Jacob Mikesell, Jason Hazel, KEEBD, cdc, kiyejoco,, u/motfalcon, littlemer-the-second, Bob Cotton, Christian Lo, Richard Sutherland, DROP, FFKeebs, @therick0996, Joel Simpson, Lev Popov, Christian Mladenov, Daniel Nikolov, u/eighty58five, Caleb Rand, Skyler Thuss, Spencer Blackwood, Yuan Liu, Schnoor Typography, Mats Faugli, Benjamin Bell, James McCleese, Ergohaven, Davidjohn Gerena, Matthias Goffette, Hating TheFruit, anonymous,, 池上 昌明, Spencer Dabell, Anatolii Smolianinov, Penk Chen

Your support is crucial to help this project to survive.