A Thread on Topre Modding

I like Topre and I wanted to start a thread on Topre modding!

Nice Tools to have:

Lubing:
I generally use Krytox 205g0 for all the rails and any plastic-to-plastic contacts. For the stabilizer wire, I use dielectric grease and give it a healthy coating. There are two rails that you want to lube within the Topre housing.

Lubing the PCB

“Lube the PCB, what?”.
When using BKE Redux or Des-Domes you can use Dielectric Grease. to lube the PCB. If you’re going to use OG Topre Domes use Krytox or Tribosys lubes. It will damage the domes when you use dielectric grease.

Yea, this really helps in limiting the spring crunch when pressing on the keys.

Opening Up the Board
Take out the silver screws and the black screws. The silver screws go into the holes that have the circles around them and the black screws go into the holes that have arrows pointing to them. I usually use two text books to prop my board up, but with the 660c the top half of the case works really well. I position my board like this and really works well.

Silencing Rings


This is a Type-s/Purple/Factory Silenced slider. These already come with silencing rings, but if you want to silence your topre boards, I recommend using Deskeys Silencing Rings because they offer a lot of different sizes that play with the sound-to-loss-of-tacility/travel ratios. I prefer Deskeys #3. I’ve also tried hyperspheres, which are nice, but really expensive when those were the only solution. I’m glad that silencing options are not as expensive anymore

Domes
I love 55g Topre domes. But there are a lot of options now from Des-domes and Keyclack.

Take your time in placing domes. You don’t want to keep opening up the board. I usually screw the silver screws first and then check if all the keys and domes have been seated properly. If they all work, I close it up, otherwise you don’t have to unscrew everything again. Be careful during this step, you don’t want to know it over and pick up all the springs and domes.

Other really helpful mods
Gasket Mod
There was another user on keebtalk that talked about using gasket maker to limit the rattling found on the board. I tried it and it worked wonders for my Realforce RGB. @BuddyOG and Unrealkeyboards has these in his shop and I highly recommend them, especially if you’re modding an RGB.


Before and after:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1AExxFpPJlXH-smc3_1PpWIH1y6y3sS38/view?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1u32Qs8AhePWaBtoLdSF0_KNuHq7iRg1M/view?usp=sharing

Stabilizer Heat-shrink


This will help in limiting the stabilizers rattling.

Topre to MX Sliders
I’m not really a fan of these anymore but you’ll have to drill holes into the stabilizer housings or get novatouch housings.

Hasu Controllers
They make your keeb reprogrammable. KBDFans has a variant.
OG on top, Hasu on the bottom

Foam and Plumber’s Tape
I line the inside of my cases with acoustic foam (see picture above). Recently have bought the nice inserts that Norbauer offers. I also cut little strips and put them in my spacebar to fill in the deadspace. If you have rattle-y spacebar, I use plumber’s tape to fill in the gaps of the outer stems.

Cases
Norbauer offers some of the best bespoke Topre cases out there. Noxary has also started making after market Topre cases.

Useful Sites:

  • UNREAL Keyboards ran by @BuddyOG. He has a really good comprehensive guide in modding Topre boards with much better visuals. He streams pretty frequently and is really nice to talk to and answers all your questions in the realm of Topre. His Discord and his stream. Make sure to visit his shop for all your Topre modding needs!
  • Hasu HHKB and Fc660c controllers
  • KBDFans offers a lot of good options for keycaps, Topre-to-MX stems, and HHKB Controller
  • Deskeys has a nice assortment of domes in different weights and an assortment of silencing rings in different thicknesses.
  • Keyclack has their own set of aftermarket domes. They are slightly more sharp in tactility and offers different weights.
  • The illustrious @norbauer and his cases are endgame. Make sure to check him out!
  • Noxary cases are also very nice looking and have a different motif compared to Norbauer’s cases, but are still very respected and appreciated in the Topre world.

What are some of your favorite Topre mods?

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Welp, I just lubed my PCB with dielectric a few weeks ago. Guess I’ll hope for the best!

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This is awesome thank you for posting all this information

Can you explain how that gasket mod is done? it looks like you got some glue and applied it around the housings? The more specific, the better.

I actually used gasketmaker. You have to separate all the housings from the plate. On the plate, you’ll have to place a small amount around each cutout and then you just have to push the housing back in.

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gotcha, sounds like quite a tedious process but maybe I’ll try it later since it seems like it does wonders

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I recommend just getting the gasket from unrealkeyboards.com, you’ll still have to take out all the housings but you won’t have to mess with the gasketmaker goop.

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@goguma thanks for posting pictures! between @BuddyOG’s discord, the deskeys discord, and keebtalk I’m getting a better idea of which Topre mods will bring the most improvement for my boards.

btw i did eventually find my ideal RF R2 in uniform 30g, and…lmao I’m underwhelmed when compared to my Heavy-6 with Deskeys Tiffanys. (or is it Tiffanies?)

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oh this is pretty cool too. Thanks for the suggestion

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Hey do you know if silicone grease is compatible with the stock topre domes?

Silicone-based lubes tend to warp the OG domes.
A test was done by buddyOG on his discord channel and it warped the OG Topre dome. Make sure to check out his discord!

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RIP your domes

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This is very necessary thank you lol

Been looking to fix up the spring ping on my HHKB ever since I got it. What is the best way to lube the pcb? or would lubing the springs themselves help?

For note I do have a bit of Krytox 106 on hand that wouldn’t mind being used if that is the case.

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You definitely do NOT want to lube the springs!! Just lightly lube the pcb. Also you can use a silicone based lube for the pcb if the domes are BKE or Deskeys. It’s only the stock Topre domes that are silicone based as well, and can be damaged.

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I actually use a blend of krytox and triboysis for the PCB (though I’m not sure what the blend is). You don’t want to lube the springs because:

  • The keystrokes won’t register.
  • It’s much more time consuming than just lubing the PCB.

Tip: If you put too much and the keystrokes aren’t registering, just get a paper towel and wipe the excess lube off.

The weird thing is that the BKE Redux domes claim that they are silicone and my short perusing for any information on the des-domes lead me nowhere in terms of the plastic composition. The OG domes are probably a special blend were the silicone compound is much more permeable than the former aforementioned domes.

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You’ve forgotten a very simple, but helpful “device” for working.
Five simple pieces of wood. This way the keycaps can be left on the sliders if you want to.

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Very informative! Thanks for posting. Btw, is the superlube g2 mentioned here the silicone grease they make or the synthethic grease with ptfe?

great point! I use neoprene blocks from a thick wristpad that I cut up. works pretty well but these purpose built wood blocks are great

Eh, i had dielectric lubed the pcb with my 55g domes and they’ve been sitting in a bag with whatever little residual dielectric came off with it when I dome swapped. They’re all in good shape, and I used them for about a month with the dielectric on the PCB and they’ve been sitting for around 3 months…?

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Would still say moving forward we should definitely transition to krytox/tribosys

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