Another day, another plastic blend

Just like with keycap profiles, it seems like each week brings another “new” (or at least new-to-switches) blend of plastic that purports to have all the best characteristics.

The traditional arrangement of POM stem with Nylon and/or polycarbonate housing has been the standard since the early 80s, but in the past two or three years, the switch scene has enjoyed lots of experimentation when it comes to materials.

Early experiments included the all-POM NK Creams, and the introduction of UHMWPE to the housings of Tangerines. Not much long after that, folks started experimenting with UHMWPE for stems, and a few seemingly short months later, more blends containing the plastic started to appear.

More recently a few of these blends have gained some popularity, and it seems like most manufacturers have at least one UHMWPE or UHMWPE-inspired blend, if not a few. (Tecsee has three, maybe four?) At this point it seems like a new (or at least new-to-switches) plastic shows up on a regular basis - and on that note:

Today I was browsing TTC’s site, and saw they have a switch touting a new(?) plastic called “polyketone” or “POK” - this replaces POM (polyoxymethylene) in the stem:

What are some of your favorite (or least favorite) “novel” plastics (or other materials) for switches or other keyboard components? (POM plates and caps, terrazzo cases, etc.)


That’s cool, it’s great to see the experimentation with available plastics.

Any ham fans here?

This looks to be a fairly standard Tecsee linear, just with a re-shuffling of plastic blends including two of their proprietary ones:

  • Nylon bottom
  • HPE top (like the Oni and a few others)
  • UPE stem (umwipe blend)

Looks like TTC is making a Nylon-housing switch that’s more or less a tribute to the classic MX Black, and it features a proprietary plastic blend they’re calling P1. I’m assuming it’s got some umwipe in it because it seems like most of those blends do - but who knows.

As is usually the case with “new” plastics in switches, it probably won’t make a huge difference, but may offer nuanced distinction from TTCs own other linears in terms of sound.


Thanks for the info on this. Am intrigued. And as a former owner of hamsters, I can confirm they got the artwork right at least! :hamster: :hamster:

1 Like

Did you ever try these? I’m thinking of buying some keycap trays from Kbdfans, and since I’m paying for shipping, I thought I might as well get some switches…and admittedly, it was probably the Hamster box that caught my eye before reading the description :crazy_face:

I’ve read through some of the other linear switches, but couldn’t make up my mind, so I thought a cute box as the deciding factor? I’ve made worse decisions…:joy: but I’m open to suggestions for any of the other linears! Raccoons maybe? So many options…)

1 Like

I haven’t tried the Hamsters yet, but I’ve had good experiences with Tecsee linears in general. If it’s the same UPE stem used in the Jadeites, they’re quite soft and can be deformed with too much weight on them, but they’re otherwise pretty soapy smooth. In general I think Tecsee’s switches trend towards a higher pitch sound wise.

As for the other linears on-offer from KBDfans…

  • I also haven’t tried the Gateron Baby Racoon switches, but I can tell you that they along with the other Pro 2.0 Gaterons are buttery smooth with an admirable if imperfect factory lube job.

  • Gateron Reds, Yellows, and Milky Yellows are on clearance; they’re classics and respond well to tuning. The former are heavily discounted, like 75% off, heckin’ cheap.

  • TTC NCR-V2 and Gold Pink linears are quite stable, modestly clacky, and decently smooth; very good all-rounder imo - but only available in three pin.

There are plenty of other good ones here; Oil Kings, CJs, Inks are all great if a little pricy compared to the other Gats. Carrots are extra crisp. TTC Light Clouds have a nice thud.

Honestly it’s kinda hard to go wrong with the selection there - the “worst” ones on offer are at least decent and it gets better from there.

1 Like

Thanks for the detailed reply! Very informative as usual!

I think I’ve landed on the deeper sounding switches - my ears seem to always prefer them…so however cute, the hamsters might not be for me :wink: I’ve just tried some Aflion Blue Sky Switches in the Keebmonkey keyboard and they are so much nicer than the TTC speed silver or the Momoka Frogs I tried previously. Much lower pitch.

I’ll try to figure out what exactly it is about the Oil Kings, the Black Sesame and these Aflion that I like and then have another look :relaxed:

1 Like

I like the PME of Tecsee, It’s brittle but it sounds quite nice.

1 Like