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Author: Subject: Dyeing PBT keycaps
Hazard to Lanthanides

Posts: 1296
Registered: 13-11-2013
Location: UW-Madison
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[*] posted on 18-2-2018 at 20:59
Dyeing PBT keycaps

So I've picked up an interest in mechanical keyboards, and one fun thing that I've thought of doing is dyeing some keycaps. There are many procedures for dyeing keycaps, and PBT is extremely easy to dye, but since a set of white keycaps can be had for less than US$10 on eBay, incorporating a bit of dye experimentation would be up my alley.

The keycaps I plan to get are doubleshot PBT (polybutylene terephthalate) and clear POM (polyoxymethylene) as legends. As the keyboard I have is backlit, it's essential that the dyes do not penetrate the POM. ABS keycaps are also available (and generally cheaper) but the dyeing procedure is far more difficult, as they melt in boiling water and are nowhere near as solvent resistant as PBT.

I'm primarily interested in using fluorescent dyes, as I haven't really seen fluorescent keycaps. I'm wondering if highlighter fluid may be sufficient to dye them, but I also feel like that's probably too simple to work properly. However I'd also like to find out what kinds of dyes should work well - I'll try just about anything that will dye the PBT but not the POM legends.

Raney nickel can't hydrogenate dank memes.
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