If you purchased the Founders or Signature Edition during the Founder’s Campaign, you will receive a leather strap and keyboard travel hard case. In addition, with the Signature edition, you have designed an icon (with Erik) that will forever be on the 60HE PCBA. This is the progress we’ve made.
Keyboard hard case
When we started the keyboard sleeve development, we had a simple felt sleeve in mind. However, after we received the first sample we quickly found out that it wasn’t going to work out. The felt sleeve would drop a lot of fiber particles onto the keyboard and its environment.
We followed up by making a “vegan” (PU) leather variant sample. I had low expectations and felt that the chances of this not working out was high. So we also started to make a hard case sample, something we weren’t sure if it could meet the budget requirement (cost and moq).
The PU leather sample came out better than expected, but the design had some flaws that didn’t play well with the thick PU. Such as the thick stitched edges.
The hard case was an instant winner and still within our budget. We decided to proceed with this and drop the sleeve. We are also considering making it available on the store. I will come back to this at a later stage.
The leather strap development didn’t go at the desired development speed. The biggest hurdle was the design. We wanted to approach it a bit differently to inspire more creativity on how you can attach something to the keyboard clip. My wife (familiar with handcrafting leather) made several suggestions based on feedback and made a few samples.
We stuck with the single ball binding post screw design for its simplicity and modern feel. I wanted to make sure it could help tone down the keyboard design and add a tag of modern elegance.
Another sample was made. It doesn’t carry the final colors, length, or have any of the intended graphics/text yet. We are now in contact with two suppliers to bring this to production.
There is still an internal debate on using genuine leather or vegan leather. We intended to use vegan leather after feeling the target group sentiment. Now there is some doubt (coming from me).
From my perspective baseline that we can all agree on is that going either genuine leather or vegan leather, you want to side with what’s best for the “general good” of the world. But where do you draw the line?
Without going into further details or arguing the one or the other, I first want to ask for your opinion on the matter. Let me know in the comments below.
Mark on the PCBA
Everybody with the Signature Edition has been in contact with Erik over the last weeks working on their unique icon design for the PCBA. These icons will forever be on the 60HE PCBA. Click here for a high res overview.
Erik had a surprisingly good time making the icons and going through the creative process. A few highlights.
There was a community icon made during a livestream with the viewers:
And of course, a forklift. Because you know, forklifts.
We were not entirely satisfied with the stabilizers on the Wooting 60HE DVT samples. The stabilizer keys sound signature was troubled with shallow and slight rattle pitches.
Sound is incredibly complex and a result of every single part in the keyboard working in harmony. There are general guidelines that should result in a better-sounding keyboard before it hits the subjective area (people’s preferences). But these are guidelines, not facts. When it comes to the stabilizers, we are not entirely sure what might make them any better than what we have now. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as adding a bit more lubricant.
But we have a few ideas. We are lowering down the plate hole tolerances so that the stabilizers have a tighter fit in the plate, adding a few decimal grams more lubricant to further dampen the housing, and trying out Gateron’s stabilizers that are made out of full nylon (softer plastic).
Kevin will receive the updated samples within the next 2 weeks, after that I’ll follow up with another update.