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Nearly two years ago there was a Deskthority thread discussing Tom Hanks' typewriter collection, and his collection inspired me to whip up an SA keycap set for 60% keyboards based on my favorite vintage manual typewriter, the Hermes Rocket. The Hermes Rocket, along with the numerous other "ultralight" typewriters of the mid-20th century, was the laptop of its day, used by novelists and journalists all over the world. This was to be the keyset to draw out your inner Hemmingway.
I knew from the start, however, that it wouldn't have much appeal without a matching themed case to go with it, and I originally thought that a flat aluminum case in seafoam green would do the trick. But the more I thought about it the more I felt that something more ambitious was needed, and I worked up some 3D renders of what I would want the case to look like. Little did I know how good MassDrop was at turning concepts into reality!
What you see here is everything I hoped this tribute keyboard would become, and I hope keyboard enthusiasts and vintage typewriter enthusiasts alike will be as excited as I am to have this baby on their desktops!
Hello John, will this support arrow clusters?
The firmware will be fully programmable, so you can assign arrow keys, or any keys for that matter, wherever you like. I plan to map FN + IJKL to the arrow functions myself (where FN sits at the Caps Lock position).
Anyway this is compatible with a 60% plate/pcb with dedicated arrow cluster?
I guess I'm not sure what you mean by "compatible with". An existing 60% PCB would probably fit into the case, but you'd have difficulty routing USB to the back because of the unusual case design.
Fair point. curious if you have plan to release a 60% with split shift which allows for dedicated arrow clusters?
the keycaps do show the arrows, but now sure where we can put them on this layout.
The idea behind the arrow keys is to put them in place of alpha keys like WASD or IJKL or HJKL for when you chord them with FN to produce arrow navigation. This is what I do with my Vortex Pok3rs, for instance. By providing the arrows in all row profiles, users are free to place them anywhere in the main alpha block they want (programming a key layer accordingly), like so:
Anything we can do to be able to get some caps to make it possible to swap the backspace and split the top right into two 1u keys? You've got me covered on the Colemak front, but not on the HHKB front, ha.
No, sorry, but we went with a standard 60% layout in order to cover the broadest possible (single) user base. An HHKB layout would require an entirely different plate and PCB.
really different. I love it!
Is the (alpha) green a standard SP color? I'd like to do the entire bottom row in blanks. Thanks!
I immediately thought of Tom Hanks when I saw this, and wondered: would he like this?
I think he would.
Love it, but 60% with non-HHKB layout is a no-go for me. Open the door to some alternative: give certainty that in next gen you will sell additional HHKB pcb for those who bought your first gen for example.
My 2 cents
Agreed. really would like a dedicated arrow cluster w/ split shift.
Would that make sense with something paying tribute to classic typewriters?
I agree. With multiple keys on the bottom having generic icons, they can be remapped along with other keys to meet any needs. The goal is met to give a nice vintage Hermes typewriter look. I love it!
Yes, these are standard SP colors: light green is color code VCO and the darker green is color code VAF.
Awesome, thank you! Great design, by the way.
@JohnRCooper : I am looking forward to this keyboard and have high hopes. Having just found out the render color of a massdrop produced CTRL keyboard was way off color, how are you making sure that the excellent colors you show in your renders will be reproduced?
As in most group buys, the CG renders are merely artist interpretations at best. The colors you see in photos or CG renders is dependent on so many factors not under anyone's control (monitor calibration, graphics adapter, lighting conditions, etc.) that nobody can--or should--make guarantees regarding the final "real life" colors relative to those photos or renders.
In this particular case, the keycaps will be Signature Plastics VCO green and VAF green. My renders are approximations of those colors based on RGB values obtained from scans of SP's color chips that I myself did not create. You have to look at those renders and realize they are only giving you a reasonably good, but not perfect idea of what they will look like in person, to your eyes.
My goal for the case color is to try and match the VAF green color, but final aesthetic calls will generally rest with me and I make no promises that the case will match the renders 100%. It is the general spirit of the Hermes Rocket typewriter that is the goal, not perfect color matching to the concept art.
Thank you for the reply. I know you will do your best.
So jealous I missed this. Seriously. I guess I'll just have to pay 2x for it on MM. =/
It's too bad Massdrop has a FOMO/TO ORDER amounts with 0 room for extra buys. I wasn't a Massdrop user when this was around and it's too bad.
MassDrop usually buys extras of everything to handle customer support problems, and then at some point they will often create a drop for any excess inventory they still have left over. So keep an eye out for such a drop next year.
Dude that is awesome. I mean, I know it might be a long shot but I will definitely keep a look out. Great job on the board btw. I think you handled the aesthetics perfectly.
Just make sure to pounce on any such sale of excess inventory in the first minute or two after it opens. These type of second-chance keyboard-related items sell out VERY quickly. Speaking from personal experience...
If you go here and select "request" you might get notified of the next overstock KB drop.
These turned out awesome. Super excited for this! Thanks for the update.
I received the item today.
But there was a big scratch on the left side of the housing.
The box has not been damaged. It is probably a scratch made in the manufacturing process.
I can not believe this item will arrive in bad condition for a year.
please help me...
sadly mine is also scratched, bad luck for us! already submitted a ticket. hoping they can help us!
and sadly the only thing support is offering me is a $20 credit, really? after such a long wait and scratches on the product? if i were to resell it straight away i'd have to mark it down more than $20!
sure i could return the product, but after waiting over a year, that's not a great option either!
if buying things here is such a gamble then it should be clearly stated up front in the drop that you may receive a blemished product!
Hi mxgzelda, sorry about the CS mixup and initial agent response. We do have inventory to be able to get you a replacement, I've taken your ticket myself and just responded to you. I'll make sure you get taken care of
Same thing happened to me. i have not said if i was taking the 20 credit or sending back yet. can this be looked into?
Hi I just received my keyboard today and I've also had the same scratch as people in this thread. I've already sent the ticket to support but the $20 voucher they seem to be giving everyone doesn't seem like a nice reimbursement for a damaged product that everyone waiting a year for.
The design is amazing and I'm very happy with the color. It sucks for it to be spoiled with this.
Hi Phisshion -- let me check and find your CS ticket. The approved flow for these cases are to offer you a choice of either (A): $20 partial refund to keep as-is, or (B): return for full refund, or (C): Return for replacement (as long as we haven inventory).
Given your passion and wait for the product, you'll probably want to get the replacement option so you get your order without the scratch. I'll reach out to you directly to see what I can do.
Hi Lanceal -- absolutely, I'll check and make sure you get a follow-up.
Hi Christian, I really appreciate that. I just got a reply from CS saying that my only options are a full refund or 20$ off. Are you guys out of inventory?
Hi Phisshion -- I'll find your ticket and update it personally. The Rocketeer is shipping from our new China warehouse, and the inventory there is not easily integrated into our usual systems that the front-end CS agents use, which is why the agent who tried helping you didn't see the inventory. We're putting in place a process to address this, but there are some hiccups, which I apologize for. Look for my direct email to your CS ticket shortly, I'm going to hunt it down right now.
Hi Phisshion, Amy here with Drop Community Support. I'll be following up with you directly on your ticket shortly to help find a resolution for you! Be on the lookout :)
I have the exact same issue with damage as others have reported. Makes me very concerned about your QA since it's the exact same type of damage. What if the replacements also have this issue?
Will decide what to do when support gets in contact with me. I really want this but doubt there are any undamaged units of this.
I think I got the champion (sadly) on the bad QA side, this is what I got (pictures) already open a ticket and after waiting for so long for this product I really do hope they have a replacement in better condition.
Also, the paint job has different qualities around the board can't picture those but some parts are smoother than others, there are bubbles, burrs, the plate is scratched left and center and the base plate was bended that made the case rock from lower left corner to top right corner.
Packaging was really bad leaving the product unprotected against water. Who knows if this water may have damaged the PCB I haven't plugged the board because I am waiting on a reply to my ticket from support.
And the 'enter' key has dents and spots on top side and both larger sides (front and back sides?) .
They keycaps on the other side came really in great quality, good job there.
What a shame you got a board with poor QA. I would be throwing a fit if this happened to me. Fortunately it makes me appreciate that I got super lucky to get an overall perfect unit even though it was painful waiting for it because of the QA issues everyone who got theirs were having. Bad QA is definitely a lottery here it seems as I thought those of us who are now getting it would have better luck.
I must be be in the minority who loves this lighter shade of the case. I find it absolutely beautiful in capturing a sun faded out vintage mint color. Really captures the 1940s mint color. Anyways, wishing you the best in getting a replacement since it is a unique modern vintage board I find.
My replacement had the same damage almost in the same spot. Now I'm getting the generic no extra available response. Will there be a way to get one of these not damaged?
Hi @Lanceal This is Amy from Community Support. Just wanted to let you know that we didn't forget about you! Someone from our team will reply back to you shortly.
Hi @atari.super.nes This is Amy from Community Support. I see that we have dispatched a replacement to you. You should have received an email with tracking information. Let me know if we can help you with anything else!
To follow up on this...
I opted for a replacement and it arrived today with the exact same type of damage.
I am incredibly disappointed that you did not take any type of action to prevent this damage since it's apparent that the switch puller is the culprit.
I've reached out to support again but I am not a happy camper right now.
Is there a reason the button where a right super key would normally be is NOT able to input anything besides FN or the super itself? Same issue with RGB controls. If you change their location, only the on/off function works. Lastly, the menu key assignment doesn't work anywhere. Otherwise, the QMK is functional, but these particular functions don't work at all if altered.
And to follow up on my last comment.
Customer support refused to improve the $25 partial refund, which is laughable since it does not even cover the devaluation of the keyboard.
They did offer to send another replacement but refused to fix the reason why the damage is happening (the switch-puller chipping the finish), even though they initially said they had taken steps to prevent this.
After weeks of back and forth I have simply given up and opted for a full refund.
It sucks to have to wait a year for something and then have nothing to show for it due to the lack of sensibility of Drop.
I'll let me wallet speak for me, and never buy anything here again.
Wow, the reviews are ravingly negative even the great LSB is highlighting the nefariously bad build qualities.
And, so how am I suppose to trust your descriptions and buy one of this seemingly perfect looking keyboards @Drop?
You guys fxxked up my MT3 keysets on the first run, then MT3 Elven Tongue you guys messed up again and shortchanged me of a missing key now this?
YIKES, I think I will never ever join another drop again to ensure no chance you guys can fxxk xp with my money again.