Sharp ZX-510 Keyboard Module (Alps SKFF)

Sharp ZX-510 Keyboard Module (Alps SKFF)

UPDATED 9/12/2020

A work in progress. This keyboard module was removed from a Sharp ZX-510 typewriter. The keycaps are thick doubleshots and it uses Alps SKFF (vertical plate spring) switches, which are pretty hard to find:

The module had several metal parts to keep it secure in the typewriter. With some finagling, it was possible to rearrange and discard some of these to create a decent typing profile:

Profile shot (you can see the metal essentially acting as riser feet)
Alps SKFF switches

I plan to handwire this board and make a case for it around the metal skeleton using plywood and possibly acrylic sheets. Updates to come!

Update #1:

This is now converted (no handwire!) and working over USB. There are still some kinks to work out, like shift lock not working, and a total lack of LEDs, but it is a working keyboard.

Wiring

As I've done for the Data General, here's the matrix for this thing if you ever come across it:

Remaining work to do:

  • Enable in-key LEDs and shift lock
  • Enable LED bank, top switch and button board
  • Figure out how to drive VFD or replace it with a similar LCD
  • Case