S key stops responding when I change switches

I hate to constantly post a bunch of newbie cries for help. I’m more of a lurker in forums like this, reading as much as I can while I expand my knowledge base. But I’ve hit a bit of a snag. Tonight I swapped out the Cherry MX Browns on my Drop Alt and replaced them with Novelkey Creams. Every single key on the board works flawlessly with the exception of one - the S key. At first I thought I had damaged the pin slots and I about had an aneurism. I tried several spare Creams with no success. So as a last ditch effort I reverted that S key back to one of my Cherry MX Browns and, lo and behold, the S key started working again!
I have zero clue what could be causing this. Why would one switch work over another? Do I have 4 bad Novelkey Cream switches? Why would it work in every single key on the board just fine, but not the S key while the Brown still works great?

I really do appreciate all the patience and help. I know everyone has better things to discuss around here other than my little problems lol. So thank you in advance.

my best guess is that the hot swap socket has issues. The way it works is there is a hole with 2 thin flat contact leaves that funciton like “doors” that close from the top and the bottom (north and south). When you insert a switch, the pin goes through these “doors.” But if you change out the switches a lot, or use a switch with fatter pins, the doors get bent and stay “open” too much. Then, when the next switch with a smaller pin comes in, it no longer makes contact.

I could make a dirty joke here, but I digress.

If that’s the case, you’ll need access to the back of the PCB. You’ll want to use some sharp tweezers or a very small flat head screw driver. You’ll want to push the “doors” back to a more close positon. They open towards the back of the PCB, so push them forward towards the front.

It’s also possible the socket is loose. You will see one side wiggle off the back of the PCB if that’s the case.


Ah, that makes a ton of sense. I just shut down for the night but I will definitely be given this a go first thing in the AM. Thank you a literal ton for a detailed response. Hopefully I can update with a fix tomorrow!

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It worked! Thank you so much! I had some issues figuring it out at first, but some kind stranger on youtube had a really up close video of what the bent pings look like and that helped a little bit for reference. Thank you for turning me in the right direction! I really appreciate it! Can’t wait to break in these Creams!