Sorry it took so long to get an update out. We have been hard at work preparing this board, and we're here to let you know what has been going on and where we are in the process.
Current Status - Flow Analysis
We are currently awaiting the results of our flow analysis. This is a series of simulations of the injection process using the mold designs to see if any problems appear when the material is flowing through the mold. If this comes back with no problems, as we expect, then we will move on to having the tooling actually created.
What have we been doing?
When we were prepping to move forward into getting tooling made, we did one last check over all the parts and did some final test fittings before moving forward. Upon doing this, we ended up finding a few things that weren't quite right and needed to be corrected before the tooling could be created. Below, I will detail a little bit about those just for some insight. These things have already been corrected.
Gaps around the keycaps
During our final test fits with fully built prototypes, we noticed that the gaps around keycaps and the inside wall of the case were not even all the way around. They were larger on some sides than others. This is something that we had to correct as it is a prominent visual component to a board looking right. We have since corrected this issue and the gaps are as even as they will get. I say it like that because with injection molding, there will always be shrinkage to some extent. This means nothing will ever be as precisely controlled as it can be with CNCd parts, but we have the files prepared to achieve the best possible outcome in this aspect of the design.
Breakout PCB Mounting
We also found some clearance issues with the breakout PCB and the screw bosses. Our original problem we needed to correct was that the screw bosses that house the threaded inserts were too thin which could cause possible cracking. We thickened them up just to make sure they are strong and no issues will appear in the future. In doing this, though, it created a new problem; the gap between the two bosses was now too small where the JST connecter didn't fit between them. We solved this by making cutouts in the bosses for the connector and the components so the PCB can sit flush on the bosses.
We are very anxious to get this board ready and in the hands of you all. We are not taking any shortcuts in the process so we can create the best board possible for you. Thank you for your patience and support over the last year of research and development. We are very confident it will be worth it for everyone who decides to get one! 🎉