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Cleaning Keyboards [pictures, and a guide]

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#1 (Radon) Major KB

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Posted May 09, 2015 - 02:57 AM

So, here's a little thing. How do all of you go about cleaning your keyboards, computer, etc? I recently had to clean my Razer Black Widow Ultimate [Hereafter BWU] from a bit of an... alcohol induced session I had. Long story short, I drank too much for the first time [3/4 of a 750 ML bottle of Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey in roughly 45 minutes on an empty stomach] and the keyboard suffered for it. I decided to pull the whole damn thing apart, and fix it two DAYS after it happened. I was gonna toss the fucker.

 

So, lowdown on keyboard. It was plugged in for many hours after I used it as a makeshift toilet for my stomach. It was still lit up, but no keys worked. I was going to throw it away as part of my lesson, but decided to fix it. I have never done something like this before, so it was my first endeavor in the world of high-tech cleaning. The outside case was filthy, and I was dreading the inside. With the BWU, you gotta unscrew each portion of the casing, with several screws hiding underneath the rubber footers. Eventually, all screws come off but you gotta take [or at least I had to] a screwdriver [flat-tip] to pry them apart. Upon doing so, I found the following. NOT for the squeamish.

Spoiler

 

Decided that's a no-go. Took the same flat tip screw-driver and started pulling most of that shit up. Trash can next to me, and sitting on the floor. Don't be like me folks, and make sure you have something between the bottom of that green board and yourself. Table, desk, paper plate, whatever. Bottom of that sucker is sharp. Got rid of most of it, and then we went to part 2.

 

Also, when you pop that case open, you have to remove the keys. I didn't have a good way to do so, so i've done what i've alwasys did when I need them removed. Screw-driver and lever them up. Worked before, worked this time, got all the pieces and none broke. I started letting the regular keys soak in warm soapy water, while the ones such as space bar - which use a metal bar to reduce pressure and thus distribute weight better - off to the side.

Spoiler

 

This is during the cleaning process. Banshee here tried to help me. It took me about an hour to clean it up, then I took a box of q-tips and some hydrogen peroxide. Started wiping off the sides, backs, tops, and any other place I could reach with the q-tips. Got rid of almost the entire bits of gunk. There was still some stuck inside the keys though. Turning it over, the unit was soldered together. Fuck that, it can stay until I get a can of air.

 

Spoiler

 

Finally got everything cleaned out, now time to let that bastard sit for a while. It still had a slight smell, but I was more intrested in letting the hydrogen peroxide dissipate off. It takes about 5-15 minutes normally to do so. I gave it an hour. After which, I took the board as it was, and plugged it into the computer. The first sign it was working, was that it hated me. My green lights flashed on, and I thought little green men were tractor beaming me to space. Shit was bright. Normally those lights are dulled by the keys, not this time and they wreaked havoc on my eyes. Stared at the wall behind them for a few minutes to see again. Tried the keys, with no caps, and they all work! Wewt wewt!

 

Now that I know it's working, I can set it aside and work on the rest. [I actually went to bed at this point, it'd been a 2.5 hour long project thus far] Got back up, and most of the smell had gone away, but there was still a slightly sickly smell of un-wanted cookies. Turned on the wax warmer, put that above the drawer the keyboard was in, and after 2 days of that, it doesn't have a smell anymore. I also took a thing of air to all of it and tried to get any little bits out. Now, that first batch of keys had been swapepd into a new thing of water over-night and left to soak. Came back the next morning, and swapped it once more. Three times the original keys were soaking. Thing is, the special keys had to be cleaned too. I pulled off the little divider tabs and metal bar holder doo-dads and set those + the bars aside. Each plastic bit and bar got a hand cleaning and paper towel to dry, and then keys themself soaked again. Same steps, 3 times of warm soapy water.

 

 

Here's where we catch up to now. Dump the water out, and forgot about it because of work for a day and a half. Well, I look at the keys, and they got little warts allll over 'em. Filled with water. Not a good sign. I started popping some of them, wiping the water away, and thought I could do this for all. Then, I got the call to go pick up the room-mate from the movie-theater. Did that, came back, and found out the water had evaporated from the keys because of my apartment being some 90F inside it. SCORE!

 

Now they are drying the rest of the way, since the insides of the keys had a little bit of moisture left over from the soaking. No desire after all this to have a drop of water possibly ruin a keyboard. Whilst waiting, my cats wanted some loving. So I gave it to them

Spoiler

 

Next step is to put the keys back on order, and fit the case back together. I'll give y'all a photo when that's done. The only thing i'm worried about is possibly needing to relube my keys, but we'll see what happens. So far, for a 140$ keyboard that everyone seems to hate, this is working pretty damn well. The RWU has held up, taken a beating, swam in a sea of filth, and has thus far come out like roses. People can bash on Razer all they want, but I like my keyboard a lot more now :D

 

 

 

So, now we get to you guys. What horror's have you all had to deal with for your gaming rigs? Any particular tips for others if they stumble onto a similar situation?


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#2 (Radon) Major KB

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Posted May 09, 2015 - 02:26 PM

Bowl o keys

Spoiler

 

Bowl o keys #2

Spoiler

 

Screws, metal d'ings, plastic tabs, and all da uver gubbins.

Spoiler

 

Once cleaned out, use this as a lap rest for the bottom of the board. Don't forget to hook your main-frame of the board into it's proper spot though.

Spoiler

 

That main frame and it's cord that needs to go under the board

Spoiler

 

Put the keys back on, that space bar was finicky as hell. Actually had to reverse the tabs that latch onto the metal bar.

Spoiler

 

And here's the board lit up with the aliens coming to get me

Spoiler

 

All in all, a resounding success. Keyboard works, except that the space bar is a bit muffled [totally fine with me], and the left control key is slighty sticky on depress. For what had happened to it though, I won't complain.


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#3 Duke Of URL

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Posted May 15, 2015 - 09:01 PM

Awesome stuff man. I'm not patient like that... I'd have tossed it and bought a new one.

 

Course, I also wouldn't have drunk near a half ounce of whiskey every minute for 3/4 of an hour on an empty stomach.

 

Glad to hear your keyboard, and stomach, survived.


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#4 (Radon) Major KB

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Posted May 16, 2015 - 03:51 AM

Awesome stuff man. I'm not patient like that... I'd have tossed it and bought a new one.

 

Course, I also wouldn't have drunk near a half ounce of whiskey every minute for 3/4 of an hour on an empty stomach.

 

Glad to hear your keyboard, and stomach, survived.

First time drinking, and I have no intention of doing it any time soon :D I figured tossing it, or repairing it, would teach me my lesson.


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#5 Duke Of URL

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Posted May 20, 2015 - 06:32 PM

First time drinking, and I have no intention of doing it any time soon :D I figured tossing it, or repairing it, would teach me my lesson.

Well shit, that explains it! Too many first timers go overboard not knowing (or sometimes even caring) what their limits are. Hell I was one of them at that tender, young age.

 

But hopefully you'll learn, and one day you'll be able to sit around with your friends and drink socially for hours without getting stupid, silly drunk. Well, most times anyways. :D


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#6 (Radon) Major KB

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Posted May 22, 2015 - 04:02 PM

Well shit, that explains it! Too many first timers go overboard not knowing (or sometimes even caring) what their limits are. Hell I was one of them at that tender, young age.

 

But hopefully you'll learn, and one day you'll be able to sit around with your friends and drink socially for hours without getting stupid, silly drunk. Well, most times anyways. :D

I want nothing to do with alcohol anytime soon except maybe to cook with, heh. Empty stomach, drinking game, killing floor and tf2, and then the room-mate calls the poison control center on me. I remember about 30 minutes of that night. Figured if i'ma be that stupid again to get drunk, it's going to be around my dad so he can keep an eye on me and make sure I don't do what I did before.


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#7 Duke Of URL

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Posted March 25, 2016 - 10:41 PM

I want nothing to do with alcohol anytime soon except maybe to cook with, heh. Empty stomach, drinking game, killing floor and tf2, and then the room-mate calls the poison control center on me. I remember about 30 minutes of that night. Figured if i'ma be that stupid again to get drunk, it's going to be around my dad so he can keep an eye on me and make sure I don't do what I did before.

So how's the no alcohol thing working for you? I'm enjoying some whiskey right now (which is why I'm lurking and reviving old threads for the hell of it). Summer's almost back and many great nights of drinks and socializing are nigh. One can only hope the younger crowd learns the value of social drinking sooner than later.

 

Also, how's the weight going for you? You had spent so much time working on it and it was going really well. Hope it kept up.


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