I finally got around to fixing up my Piggy. The stabs were overlubed and now they are just right.

The Piggy mechanical keyboard on the Keebmat deskmat. The Piggy is on a bamboo colored desk. The little action figure of Walle is visible in the background.

This is the Piggy with White on Lilac in the DSA profile. The switches are Emerald Silks which are unfortunately no longer available, but these NovelKeys silks are the same, just in a different color.

I am not sure exactly how I thought it worked, but when I was first dipping my toe into the world of mechanical keyboards, I just didn’t believe (not couldn’t mine you, didn’t) believe people were paying this much for a keyboard. I knew they cost some amount of money, but not the figures I was seeing. And you had to put it together yourself? And, in fact, it was more money on top of these kits? And you had to pay up front and then waiting for months for something to get to you?

At some point I came across a keyboard that spoke to me. It was all the funness I was looking for: they right layout, a bit of old-school styling, and a little bit of flair (bezels that spread out some). So I ordered a Titan 65. At the same time I ordered some keycaps that also spoke to me. And because I didn’t know what I was ordering exactly, I ordered all the kits that were additional costs on top of the base kits of keycaps.

The entire order was over $550. And I’d still need to add stabilizers. And put it together.

Well, 685 days later(!), the Titan 65 was delivered. I put it together. I love it.

Everyone has good and bad day. I’m trying to remember the good ones and, if nothing else, learn from the bad ones.

Yesterday was a good day. My son and I went to see Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein. I didn’t tell him what we were seeing and by sheer luck the Nitehawk’s marquee didn’t have it listed, so he didn’t know what we were seeing until the movie’s title came up on the screen. The movie was a lot of fun. There is nearly nothing better than hearing your child laugh from joy.

Then I had some time to rebuilt a keyboard. Boy do I love me some clicky keyboards. Here’s the Class65 with Tattoine keycaps. Left side of Class65 keyboard with Tatooine keycapsRight side of Class65 keyboard with Tatooine keycaps

Then my son and I had supper together (all leftovers, which gives us both a great deal of satisfaction of not having wasted anything at all).

Finally, we finished The West Wing series.

That was a good day and I won’t forget it. I also won’t forget it because I wrote it down on my blog.

The Keyboard Meetup

I went to my first ever keyboard meetup in Manhattan yesterday. I am going to guess there were about 50 people in attendance with about 60 keyboards while I was there.

Being an introvert I didn’t really speak with anyone other than a hello or excuse me as I invariably bumped into people.

Overall impressions
People: Generally have very good taste. There was not a single board there which made me think, “That’s terrible.” Now there were plenty of cool boards that weren’t for me (I don’t get the lure of the Keycults or the super mini 40s), but overall I have to say “Well done, strangers from the internet.”

What I must buy: SA Oblivion

What I don’t want: Any super-tiny 40s

What I noticed: I saw a lot of GMK sets (which I guess I should have expected, but didn’t because I guess I’m still a n00b). I had never seen any GMK sets in person (I have some on order, but, you know…) and wow are GMK sets sharp. I did not see any PBTfans sets other than the one I brought.

What I need: More AC. The room was too small and too hot for the amount of people. The organizer updated everyone after the event saying he took a lot of notes as to what worked and what didn’t and he was also aware of the size of the space. Big thumbs from me to the organizer.

What I realized: I am old. Far older than anyone there and while it didn’t bum me out, it did make me feel like I was crowding into a space I didn’t totally fit into. Now, no one said anything and it could be my endless anxiety. It’s not even so much that I care what people think of me (It’s not my business what people think of me), but I try to be aware of sliding into a space that maybe doesn’t need me. Or maybe I just prefer virtual rooms. I am 100% glad I went and I will go to more should they pop up in NYC.

I guess it’s been a year and a half now that I’ve gotten deep into the mechanical keyboard hobby. Mostly, of course, the hobby consists of spending money and then waiting for something to be made.

I’ve met (“met”) so many friendly, helpful, supportive people in this hobby—some my age, some half, that I’m not sure I would have remained (somewhat) sane during this pandemic.

Never being into hobbies before and also never assembling items on my own (I don’t count Ikea furniture) I can’t believe I build my own keyboards and get as much excitement and pleasure out of them as I did on day one.

Here is the Class65 keyboard with Spark keycaps made by PBTfans. PBTfans is a new brand to me who seem to be making keycaps nearly as good as GMK (sharper than GMK, too) for a lot less money.

This is a Piggy. It’s a mechanical keyboard I built using Matcha Latte switches (they are sorta kinda green).

This is the Class 65 keyboard from MM Studio (the studio is based out of China). I was lucky enough to get into the first small in-stock sale of 50 units and got it straight away. The Class 65 only went into Interest Check in November so it’s remarkable I have it already. There was no build guide, so I did get tripped up a few times when trying to put it all together, but thanks to the absolutely wonderful community I’ve found, I got help and advice and got back on track. There is a group buy happening in February 2022 and I hope to be able to contribute to an official build guide before the next units ship out.

I built it with Silks Red switches and stabilizers from NovelKeys.

For this picture, I used [Cherry Sand keycaps] (https://novelkeys.com/collections/keycaps/products/cherry-sand) from NovelKeys. I know, I love NovelKeys!

Here it is with MT3 2048 keycaps from Drop.

Ikki Aurora 68

As I avoid the news (which I am doing so very poorly), I’m trying to focus my energy on keyboards. They are silly amounts of fun.

This is an Ikki Aurora 68 in Charcoal. I used Red Silk switches from NovelKeys along with Cherry Taro keycaps which are also from NovelKeys.

I’m a little annoyed I can’t straighten out the enter key (you can see it’s a little crooked), but it doesn’t affect how it works. I tried redoing the stabilizer (that’s the problem), but I can’t make it as straight as I’d like.

Today I built my first mechanical keyboard. In the travails of life, it’s so incredibly minor it hardly qualifies as worth mentioning. But I’m mentioning it because it means something to me.

As I’ve mentioned in the past I’ve had a thing for these old-fashioned keyboards. Well, I guess they’re not really old-fashioned since these are all new and literally didn’t exist even 5 years ago, but the fact I was was able to get one was because of the community surrounding this. Now, I know I’m a pretty privileged white male so there’s just a lot of abuse I’m not faced with or even am aware of because it just doesn’t happen to me I’d the (generally) other white males I know. But the little communities I’ve become a part of have made this whole experience just so much fun.

Almost involved in these communities all are much, much younger than I am and, greedily, I’m stealing their energy, enthusiasm, and sometimes their eccentricities. I’m stealing their silliness too.

I’m not into luxury goods. I don’t need fancy clothes, jewelry, or cars. I’m pretty happy with a movie at home or a library book. But I guess I do like some luxury goods after all. As long as I can assemble them myself.