Split spacebar bindings

I see split spacebars (2 and 3 button) pop up in pictures from time to time and I’m intrigued to try it in my next build.

I was wondering what people assign to the buttons of their split spacebar? (2 or 3 variants)

I’m working on a 3-split space bar right now. It’s space, Fn, space, but I may change that in the future after using it for a while. I’ll use Fn with my left thumb for arrow keys on ESDF

I do a single split. Left side is backspace or delete when on function layer 1. Right side is space regardless of layer. No more reaching for backspace or delete keys!

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Same. Left backspace, right space. I just built a DZ60 where left is backspace, center is space and right is enter.

Split spacebars are so convenient, I don’t know why they haven’t become the norm. I don’t buy keyboards that don’t offer a split space layout anymore.


I’ve seen a few different layouts. I use space with my right hand, so I’d go:

Shift/Space (rarer on non-40%) layouts

And with 3 I’d do Backspace/Shift/Space probably

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mine is: Space - Fn - Right Shift

I usually hit Space with my left thumb, my right thumb does nothing at all.
With split spacebars:

  • my left thumb will hit Space, move a bit to the right to hold Fn.
  • my right thumb now can be useful, it hits Right Shift.

Fn + Space = Enter
Fn + Tab = Backspace

hope this help! :grinning:

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I like to have it be shift/FN/space. I find it more comfortable to not have to reach for shift with my pinky.

Split between space on the left and enter on the right. I have them set to Tap keys with QMK where I can press them for their normal use, or hold them as modifiers. I have their holds set to layer switch, with holding space (left) activate my main utility layer, and holding enter (right) activating my secondary utility layer.

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I really hate shift keys, so when designing my new layouts I’ve been playing with the idea of having split space and just eliminating the shift keys. I’d rather die before ever using a 1u shift key.

I feel like shift is better as a thumb key anyway. With splitspace I don’t have to worry about people getting mad that there is only one shift key, as its very simple to just map shift to the spacebar that you don’t use for space.

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Ugh, I haaaaate 1u shift keys :sweat_smile: especially on some 65% with the arrow cluster in the lower right. I’m always hitting up instead of shift, or vice versa.

This is a neat idea, too. I should try this out and see if I can live without needing to hold down the spacebar to input a bunch of spaces. I’m almost certain I don’t need to do that, so maybe holding the split space for some kind of modifier would be great for ergonomics.

The current theory I’m working with is that I’d use right space for typing and left space for gaming, so they both need to function like a normal spacebar for the time being.

see if I can live without needing to hold down the spacebar to input a bunch of spaces

In my experience, if you have your key set to a tap key a quick Down Up Down Hold will just enter repeated characters and not switch to modifier mode.

Also I have a gaming layer where the only change is my spacebar stays a spacebar. If you need those layers gaming you can always set different key to access that layer from your gaming layer.

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So far, besides ergodox/iris, I’ve only had one keyboard with a split spacebar. There I had the left as backspace (space in gaming layer), the middle 1.25u as a space (smoothest space ever :P) and the bigger right one as a MO FN key. Made it really easy to get into the first layer :slight_smile: Since then have changed it to a regular spacebar, mostly because I couldn’t get the spacebar stabs -not- to rattle, they kept hitting the plate unfortunately :frowning:

For a three part spacebar I’ve got navigation layer, enter and space.

I don’t even really get fancy with mine. Both the larger keys are still space and the 1.25u key is function layer 1. I just don’t like large space bars for playing very active games, a 2.25u key feels a lot more responsive. I despise 2.75u keys though, they’e such a pain to get reliably. I feel like a crazy person every time I get only a spacebar pack from a group buy because its just easier to get them that way.

Next build I do is going to be a handwire that scales down the modifiers so 2.25u is the largest key on the board.

Very helpful, thanks for the reply

I only have one board with a split space, but it’s my 40 percent, so left side is space as my left thumb actuates space more and right is fn1. I have fn2 next to it, but it’s just a modifier, not a space key at that point IMO.

UOHHHH! Split space ULTIMATE life!! /2.75-1.25-2.25/ = Space-FN1-RShift. For me, This is just a much better position for your right hand and its wrist so you don‘t move your hand too much AND actually use both thumbs while typing.

i use it for fn/fn2 on 40% boards - it turns my QWERTY row into numbers!

I have them set to Tap keys with QMK where I can press them for their normal use, or hold them as modifiers

That is a neat trick, I have to try that on my next build

I tried to do that, but found that I can activate the tap sometimes unintentionally when going for the press. I’m sure I could get used to it, but after a month with it like that, I just decided to change it.