The Tape Mod

I mean…theoretically you could painters tape and than gaffer right?

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But what are u trying to accomplish with all that extra stuff?

Some delicate surface painter’s tape is what first came to mind for me to do this mod with. Although as someone who does a lot of painting professionally I will let you all know the longer you leave the tape on your PCB the more likely the adhesive is to separate from the tape & stay on the back of your PCB. Regardless of what type of tape is used. Even delicate surface tape will do this if left on something for over say 4 or 5 days IME.


This makes me wonder if a mild adhesive removal chemical would also remove the coating on a given PCB. I guess you could use distilled water, a gentle cloth, and lots of patience if it came down to it.


When I made signs for a living, we used this stuff that was basically industrial Goo-Gone - and there’s a reason they don’t sell it to consumers off the shelf. It’s very effective - and very toxic.

It’s a godsend when you need to remove all of the years-old glue from a nine foot wide piece of acrylic, though - turns the dried-out adhesive crust into gooey stuff you can scrape into blobs and easily wipe clean.


This was one of the thoughts I had. I have bought some second hand boards with PCBs covered in sticky flux. Now I have to worry about a PCB covered in this cause every new kiddy wants to chase that Jelly sound…

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What’s Jelly sound? Tape mod sound = Jelly sound?

I might have got my sound mods mixed up. I have seen a lot of people chasing the sound of the Jelly Epoch board. The secret sauce of this is apparently a thin layer (1mm) of PE foam above the PCB, but under EVA foam.

You get this poppy sound. It is blowing up on YouTube, same as the tape mod.


I have been wanting someone to try plastidip for a while now but I am too scared to do it to my own PCB :stuck_out_tongue:


The secret sauce of this is apparently a thin layer (1mm) of PE foam above the PCB, but under EVA foam.

That sounds (pun intended) similar to multi-layered plate padding idea I mentioned before. Great knowing there is at least one combo (1mm + air gap) that works. Thx for mentioning it!

UPDATE: Looks like they are using two layers, 1mm PE foam + thicker foam. Based on some of the videos I watched, one with the combo plate foam and no case foam sounded very distinct and pleasant.

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Yep! It seems that the PE foam is the kicker. I guess PE foam is just that thin packing foam that a lot of boards ship in! -

For some reason, this gave me an idea to do a waterbed under the PCB, but filled with some kind of Jelly (KY?)


Did this mod in my Eighty with some athletic tape I got from the dollar store. It worked really well. The improvement in the “thock” was pretty apparent!


Leave it to our keyboard scientists to complicate “tape over the back of your PCB.” :joy:

It’s why I love this community.


This is the type of content we want on YT/twitch :stuck_out_tongue:

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PE foam in the exploded view suggests that, unlike typical plate foams, switches rests on top of the PE foam. I’m going to try making one myself to see how that changes the sound.

UPDATE: Tried the mod on a hotswap tray-mount with just 1mm PE foam I had lying around and got the board to sound similarly even without a thicker foam on top. The sound reminded me of how soap box sounds when dropped on tile so Wet poppy sound is pretty accurate. I think switches has to be soldered-in for tray-mounts because, with hotswap, switch pins don’t make full contact with Kailh sockets.

My DIY Jelly mod foam for Tsangan:


PE foam is definitely interesting, its a similar effect to the tape mod, but more drastic, less controllable, And softens the bottomout somewhat which might be pleasant for some people. The PE mod plus the tape mod combined saved my leaf 60 from sounding like lifeless garbage, and had a super drastic effect on the 7v . 7v but with them deep tones everyone wants. - YouTube


Enjoyed our 7v video. It sounds like wet pebble falling on wooden floor.

Clack, Thock, and now Thud.

UPDATE: Now wondering what ironed-flat PE foam would sound like. If the same, it may be thin enough to made into adhesive films to be attached to bottom of switches.


Cool idea with the tape!!!

This would be a total pain to remove but I am wondering if tape would work effectively on the top part of the PCB. The benefits to doing on top would be its flat so you are going to get a tight taping compared to the back where there is a lot more stuff in the way. Would only work on hotswap though, soldering would be a firehazard.

I wonder if you used an appropriate sized punch on the tape covering the through holes on a solderable PCB, you could avoid burning down your soldering station.

They do make heat resistant tape

I am a fan of using that tape for general PCB stuff. Though I have never tried the 2" one.

I did a quick mockup in an extra PCB I had on the desk. Poked through the tape with a pointy solder tip, not turned on. Definitely sounded less pingy but this wasn’t a conclusive test.