How do I go about making my own switches? Looking for advice as a newbie

I hope newbie questions are okay here… Trying to venture into custom switches.

I bought a hot-swappable keyboard and wanted kalih speed heavy burnt orange switches, or similar to it, maybe with quieter stems, more pronounced feeling tactile feedback, like a force curve similar to the speed heavy navy thick clicks (my favorite feeling switches) and maybe stronger cushioning (like a progressive rate spring that is aggressively light in actuation force but aggressively heavy on the bottom out force).

Sadly it turns out that my “CIY” board only takes cherry style outemu switches, and I didn’t feel like filing down the pins of 104 switches till they fit the socket… Was looking for outemu alternatives, but I realized that maybe I could buy the parts I need and make my own switches. I’d really appreciate it if someone could guide me through this venture, since it seems like a bit of daunting task.

Maybe someone can walk me through what I’ll need before I jump the gun and make another mistake like I did with my CIY board.

From what I’m guessing (yes, I’m as unsure as I sound), I think I will need (help me out where I’m thinking wrong here please):

  • Housing/bottoms that fit my “CIY” sockets, maybe outemu sky housing? Not sure how the housing will affect the feel of the switch…

  • Progressive rate springs. Maybe someone can point me in the right direction here, but the only ones I’ve come across so far are the SPRiT progressive edition mx springs, but nowhere that sells them.

  • Tactile silent stems, maybe I can use or find something similar to the speed burnt orange stems? I haven’t looked into this yet.

  • Clear, no slot tops so my board’s leds can shine through and cause I hear the slotless tops are less wobbly.

  • Not sure what else I might need or have missed. I haven’t really been able to find much information online.

I’m not familiar with the CIY board, but I’ve yet to see a hotswap board that doesn’t accept the majority of MX pins (including other manu’s like the switches you want to try.

The only exception is the sheathed pins of Outemu, Invyr and BSUN switches which do need narrower pins.

Do you have any pictures of the hotswap sockets? Or a link to some more info on the hotswap sockets in the board?


Re- your question, if you are correct on the need for the narrower pins, then you will be limited to BSUN, Invyr or the outemu switches you have - but you could create a frankenswitch using a different stem in the housings that you have as well.

For progressive springs, currently SPRIT is the only vendor stocking them, although they are undergoing revisions at the moment. You can purchase directly from his site.

Yeah, that was exactly the issue. I have sampler pack of kalih switches and none of them fit. I pulled out of the outemu blue switches that the board came with to compare, and the pins were thinner.

(PS I can only add one image per post cause I’m new here. I’ll add another next post if you want)

Ok those are the sheaths that come on those switches. You could desolder the board, remove the sheaths and then solder in new switches, or replace those sheaths with mill-max sockets.

Not super comfortable with desoldering/soldering since I don’t really have any experience with that sort of stuff.