It's clee here


Some of you might remember me from long ago on Geekhack - I created a custom PCB for the Model M that was USB-native about a decade or so ago, and I’ve been building custom keyboards for a couple of years now.

My current daily drivers (depending on which computer I’m using):

  • Iris (Kailh speed copper + JTK red on black)
  • Pearl (Box Navy + GMK Oblivion)
  • Model M SSK, part 1391472
  • Clueboard (Box Navy + enjoyPBT blanks)

I’ve been thinking about making a new logic board for the Model M - something that can run QMK. Anybody know if there’s already a way to run QMK on a Model M? I’d hate to reinvent the wheel. Again.


That is probably the most diverse group of 4 keyboards I’ve ever heard. Nice array!


What a selection of keebs :open_mouth:


I have… too many more boards than those, just… those are the ones I actually find myself using. :grin:

The Model M needs no introduction, but it was my first mechanical keyboard and will always hold a special place in my heart. Buckling springs are, so far, my favorite switch type, but as you can tell, I have accepted Box Navies with open arms because they’re pretty damn close.

The Pearl was my first exposure to the world of the 40-45% keeb. I built it with a split spacebar, because I wanted to use it as kind of a stepping stone to the Iris, which I technically built before the Pearl but the claustrophobic split layout was too weird at first for me to use regularly. I chalk a lot of this up to my particular keymap neuroses; for example, I keep the key to the left of ‘a’ (usually CapsLock, or sometimes just Ctrl) mapped in QMK as MT(MOD_LCTL, KC_ESC)—on tap, it generates Esc, but on hold, I get Ctrl.

The Pearl experiment worked! I ended up translating the Pearl layout I was using over to map almost 1:1 with the Iris (the Iris has a whole extra row, and one fewer key on the top row than the Pearl as I built it, but almost everything transferred over without issue). And now I can use the Iris to type almost as fast as my Model M.

And then the Clueboard is the most recent. I wanted a 60-66% with a split spacebar, because now that I’ve gotten used to it on the Pearl and Iris, I needed a split spacebar on a bigger board.


@clee Pearl :heart: