Apple IIc keyboard

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Apple IIc keyboard

Postby arjoll on Mon Feb 18, 2013 7:49 pm

Some of you may remember that around August 2010 I picked up a couple of Apple IIes with various cards and an Apple IIc. The computers had been in storage for quite some time - one of the Apple IIe's had a very badly corroded case which appeared to be the result of leakage from the PSU, which was dead after a recap.

Anyway, I fired up the other IIe to find a faulty key on the keyboard, put it aside and turned my attention to the IIc. This was in good condition (although a bit grubby), but the caps lock key didn't latch - a bit of a pain in DOS 3.3 which doesn't recognise lower case! After imaging some of the disks that came with the Apples with ADTPro I decided to get the monitors for the three Apples (Monitor ///, Monitor //c and a generic green display) checked by a service company, so put the rest aside for a while.

The monitor check was a freebie that took 18 months - much to the embarrassment of my friend who manages the company that was going to check them! I've now got them back, so this evening decided to look at the IIc keyboard.

I couldn't find much about repair, but plenty about the two different types, and seeing they use discrete keyswitches thought disassembly was in order - at least I'd know the type and could start looking on eBay for replacements. I have had an aversion to keyboard dismantling since I opened up my Nan Tan (Alps keyswitches, beaut keyboard, from an Imagineering Ultra 286 but TL Systems also used them in the day) in 1990 and couldn't get the shift key back on without help!

It turns out I have the keyboard with the rubber spill guard, and the whole thing was filthy - not surprising for a 28 year old. I found the caps lock came off really easily, and the keyswitch itself latched nicely, so I didn't have a fault at all - just a grubby keyboard. I pulled all the keycaps off, cleaned the rubber guard and PCB, all the keyswitches and have reassembled (cleaning the rest of the case on the way).

So, after all the concern, I now have a fully working IIc and all it took was an hour with a screwdriver and rag!
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Re: Apple IIc keyboard

Postby tezza on Mon Feb 18, 2013 9:30 pm

arjoll wrote:So, after all the concern, I now have a fully working IIc and all it took was an hour with a screwdriver and rag!

excellent!

An Apple IIc is one of those computers I've never seen in the flesh...
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Re: Apple IIc keyboard

Postby Carcenomy on Mon Feb 18, 2013 10:38 pm

arjoll wrote:I have had an aversion to keyboard dismantling since I opened up my Nan Tan (Alps keyswitches, beaut keyboard, from an Imagineering Ultra 286 but TL Systems also used them in the day) in 1990 and couldn't get the shift key back on without help!

Boy can I believe that, I have one of those Ultra by Imagineering mechanical beasts - probably a Nan Tan given your description. I wouldn't want to try remove the keys at all for fear of destroying it. Amazing keyboard though, it's only now that you can again buy a mechanical anything like that :)

As for the IIc, nice work! They're a relatively well treasured system these days.
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