So when I first started to lube my switches I found some solace in the process where I could just zone out & be like “what 3 hours have passed???” by the time I finished. However as I further refined my lubing skills & preferences, plus added in the step of filming with most switches I find the process to just be a drag now. Not to the point where I’d outsource the chore since I am very particular, but just much less fun than when I first started.
Thankfully I am always happy that I went through the trouble in the end, which keeps me going. Plus I’ve found a decent system that minimizes the dislike of the lubing process I’ve grown to have. Basically I’ll do my switches in batches from 10 to 20 at a time & completely finish all those switches before moving on to any other. Naturally this lengthens the time it will take to finish the batch being worked on, but allows you to to stop whenever you want without having a bunch of half finished switches sitting in the open.
I just started lubing some Durock/Matrix FFFF linears today to rebuild my KBD8X mkII & it got me to thinking about all of this. Anyways overall I was wondering how you guys feel about lubing switches & if anyone who’s been in the hobby for awhile has come to a similar conclusion to me. Would love to hear everyone’s opinions!
I found out that all my annoyances started when I started to film my switches. So I try to minimize using them nowadays.
I also found my preferences changing from more lube to a minimal amount, this increased the difficulty of lubing for me.
Hence, I just oil lube my switches now and I am satisfied and happy during lubing.
It’s quite the chore, isn’t it? That’s why I’m trying my best to find switches that I can use stock. Ha! I couldn’t possibly count the number of switches I’ve lubed over all this time. But like you said, it’s always worth the effort, so I keep coming back to it, begrudgingly.
I sometimes take the 10-20 approach as well. I’ll lube 10-20 and then take a break for a few hours to do chores and such. But before I lube anything, the very first thing I do is sit down and open them all. I find that pretty easy and fast going. Sometimes I tell myself I’ll just do that for the day. I’ll often get into lubing after that because I make headway and feel like I can get more done… then hate life after 10 or so.
But yeah, I feel ya on this one. I can’t imagine people who do this as a service. You would have to pay me at least $5 per switch to do this for a living.
I totally understand. And that’s why I baglube.
Lubing is indeed not as fun as before so have started populating a hot-swap board with stock switch then lube 10~15 at a time while in-use. Advantage of this approach:
- Start using the new switches right away.
- You get a good feel for the stock switch.
- You also get to appreciate the difference between stock and lubed.
- Switches get lubed more meticulously bc a sloppily lubed switch will be noticed right away.
- No need for lube station.
It sounds like the novelty and thrill of lubing switches for a performance uplift had waned, and instead it feels like a chore (like it actually is?)
I think it’s a regular pattern that happens when you do something too much or too frequently. Like most tasks, it is good to set aside time and space for the activity, perhaps doing things in batches or complete the lubing process with something enjoyable to you – music in the background, some snacks to munch on (tip: use chopsticks or a utensil) etc
I never liked lubing switches lol it’s so boring and tedious and most of the lubes make my hands itchy if I don’t wear gloves. I don’t do the few at a time though I’ve found I’m way more likely to finish the job if I just do them all in one go and get it over with.
Completely agree that filming has upped my frustrations with lubing switches! But maybe I didn’t like it to begin with and skipping that step with my next switch might bring less frustration?
One can hope.
I tend to avoid lubing switches, nowdays we’ve reached a point were manufacturers should have mastered the art of making MX switches, look at Gazzew, his switches are plug and play, how many switches can be called good as is?
If a switch isn’t good stock it’s really not worth getting unless the price is really cheap, that’s my opinion at least.
I’ve given total preference to low-mod switches. Bluish whites, bobas, and linears (bag lube). Anything more than that and I’m just going back to topre, cause tuning it’s just easier imo.
I often get 20-30 done in one sitting, cry in the corner when I try to work with my stabilizers (i.e, break time), and repeat.
When was it ever fun, lol
Lubing switches has never been fun. I take whatever shortcuts(lube stem only and bag lube springs) as much as I can to minimize the time I spend. Lol. I also just use the switch break-in machines to break-in the switches. If the switches turns out right after break-in, I don’t even bother to lube those, especially some factory prelubed switches.
Stabilizers are easily the worst thing is the mechanical keyboard hobby, you have to find the perfect stabilizer+lubing+keycap+switch combination, even if 3 are perfect 1 of them not being perfect is going to cause rattle/tick to a degree.
Edit: Finding good switches is often overlooked but very important, for example U4Ts and Black Inks just refuse to not rattle with my spacebars but other swithes are perfect in the same board.
Absolutely! I find many Gateron switches (including inks and tealios) have so much north/south wobble that it’s almost impossible to make the space bar sound and feel perfect.
It takes a while to lube them, so I bag lube the stem and spring. It’s messier on the stem, but it isn’t much of a concern.
Ugh, L/F is just the worse. The novelty has for sure worn out for me. I firmly agree with @Cloud983 – why on earth can’t the manufacture just make them sound and feel this way from the get go? It’s not rocket science, and defiantly a task an automatized machine should be proficient at doing.
From someone who doesn’t do much soldering and without trying to pivoting from the topic – but are there any parallels of “fun zone to hated process” while soldering switches when hotswap is usually an available option?
Solder = L/F by hand
Hotswap = just buy really good stock switches
I can still nudge myself into that mode of robo-lubing while watching youtube or something.
Stabs, though. They technically take less work and time than a batch of switches… but they irritate me quite a bit more.
Quick, someone write that down.
I mean, I soldered a cp-1800 in a half hour the other night. Switches are so large and not technical that with a high quality solder, I don’t even use flux. Just lay it down and move quick. I have a lot of fun doing it, and every time it gives me an opportunity to improve.
Don’t get me wrong, I primarily enjoy it cause it’s low-risk soldering. Ask me to do SMD components and I’ll just laugh.