Otherwise use Retroradionics for replacement membranes.
Charles - I am actually going to have a short production run of ZX81 membranes with a blank (black) thin top layer, so that it is easier to use with one of the custom overlays from Tynemouth Software
I have quite extensive experience of working with keyboard manufacturers and have invested large amounts in getting membranes made over the years.questarian wrote: ↑Wed Dec 19, 2018 6:44 am I was actually looking to see if anyone had any information about, or experience with, making membranes... I have a number of retro machines for which no one's producing replacements, so I'm doing some research to see how feasible it would be to do runs of them.
It depends on where you live to some extent - I have experience with manufacturers in the Czech Republic, Poland and the UK (the latter is my preferred supplier). Djordje (Retroradionics) uses a factory in China - although I am always dubious as to what he must be promising them, because the Chinese factories never seem to have any interest in an order less than 10,000 !
Cost issues are based on 3 main factors:
a) Initial graphics work and layout for the tooling (expect to pay between £150-£450 plus tax for this)
b) The size and complexity of the membrane being produced
c) The numbers of membranes being ordered - as you do benefit from bulk discount; although you also want to offset the initial tooling costs through the membrane. I have found that a minimum run of 50 membranes is just about feasible using my UK supplier.
Taxation and shipping of course
Why not list which machines you have and we can try to see how much interest there might be....
If he means rubber keys, I am going to taken resin and silicone to make a mold and production of new ones. Very difficult... because of tiny spaces...
Maybe injection is only way.
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Membrane normally refers to the multilayer plastic/metal film part that contains the electrical conductors and contacts. In the case of the ZX81 (for example) this also includes a “printed” top layer with the keyboard layout.
I did run into one low cost alternative someone came up with that I hadn't thought of, which is using foil covered kapton sheets and chemically etching them like circuit boards.