How to DIY Mechanical Keyboard

Are you tired of using the standard keyboards that come with your computer? Do you want to personalize your typing experience and have full control over the design and functionality of your keyboard? If so, then it’s time to consider building your own mechanical keyboard. In this article, we will guide you through the process of creating a DIY mechanical keyboard, step by step.

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Understanding Mechanical Keyboards
  3. Choosing the Right Components
  4. Preparing Your Workspace
  5. Building the Keyboard Frame
  6. Installing Switches and Keycaps
  7. Wiring the Keyboard
  8. Programming the Keyboard
  9. Testing and Troubleshooting
  10. Customizing Your Mechanical Keyboard
  11. Maintenance and Cleaning Tips
  12. Conclusion
  13. FAQs


In this digital age, keyboards have become an essential tool for communication and productivity. Mechanical keyboards offer a superior typing experience with their tactile feedback and customizable features. Building your own mechanical keyboard allows you to tailor it to your preferences, from the layout and switches to the keycaps and lighting.

Understanding Mechanical Keyboards

Before you dive into building a DIY mechanical keyboard, it’s essential to understand the basic components. Mechanical keyboards consist of switches, keycaps, PCB (printed circuit board), plate, and a case. Each component plays a vital role in the overall performance and aesthetics of your keyboard.

Choosing the Right Components

When selecting components for your mechanical keyboard, you have various options to consider. The switches determine the typing experience, with options like Cherry MX, Gateron, and Kailh available. Keycaps come in different materials, profiles, and colors, allowing you to express your personal style. The PCB and plate provide stability and ensure proper key registration, while the case protects the internal components and adds visual appeal.

Preparing Your Workspace

Creating a DIY mechanical keyboard requires a clean and organized workspace. Ensure you have all the necessary tools, such as a soldering iron, solder, wire cutters, and a screwdriver. Set up a comfortable area with ample lighting to work on your keyboard assembly.

Building the Keyboard Frame

The keyboard frame provides the foundation for your DIY mechanical keyboard. You can choose from various materials like aluminum, plastic, or wood. Some popular layouts include full-size, tenkeyless (TKL), and compact layouts like 60% and 75%. Follow the instructions provided with your keyboard frame kit to assemble it properly.

Installing Switches and Keycaps

Now it’s time to install the switches and keycaps onto the PCB. Ensure you align the switches correctly with the PCB’s solder pads and press them firmly into place. Next, attach the keycaps to the switches, making sure they fit snugly. Take your time during this step to ensure all switches are properly installed.

Wiring the Keyboard

Wiring your mechanical keyboard involves connecting the switches to the PCB. Follow the wiring diagram provided with your keyboard kit, ensuring that each switch is connected to the correct trace on the PCB. Use solder to secure the connections and trim any excess wire. Double-check your work to avoid any potential issues.

Programming the Keyboard

One of the advantages of building your own mechanical keyboard is the ability to customize its functionality. Most DIY keyboard kits support programmability, allowing you to remap keys, create macros, and adjust lighting effects. Refer to the manufacturer’s instructions or the QMK firmware documentation to program your keyboard to your desired specifications.

Testing and Troubleshooting

Before you start using your DIY mechanical keyboard, it’s crucial to test it thoroughly. Connect it to your computer and verify that all keys register correctly. Test each switch, ensuring they actuate and return smoothly. If you encounter any issues, double-check your wiring and programming, and consult online forums or communities for assistance.

Customizing Your Mechanical Keyboard

Once you have a fully functional DIY mechanical keyboard, you can take it a step further by personalizing its appearance. Explore different keycap sets and colors to match your style. Consider adding backlighting or RGB lighting effects to enhance the aesthetics. The possibilities for customization are endless, allowing you to create a keyboard that reflects your unique personality.

Maintenance and Cleaning Tips

To keep your DIY mechanical keyboard in optimal condition, it’s essential to perform regular maintenance. Remove keycaps periodically and clean them with a keycap puller and gentle soap. Use compressed air to remove dust and debris from the switches and PCB. Store your keyboard in a dust-free environment when not in use to prevent dirt accumulation.


Building a DIY mechanical keyboard is a rewarding and fulfilling project for enthusiasts and those looking to enhance their typing experience. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can create a personalized keyboard that matches your preferences and style. Embrace the journey of building your own mechanical keyboard and enjoy the satisfaction of typing on a truly unique device.


1. Is building a DIY mechanical keyboard difficult? Building a DIY mechanical keyboard requires some technical skills and patience. However, with the right resources and instructions, it can be an enjoyable and manageable project for enthusiasts.

2. How long does it take to build a DIY mechanical keyboard? The time required to build a DIY mechanical keyboard can vary depending on your experience level and the complexity of the keyboard kit. On average, it can take several hours to a few days to complete the assembly and programming.

3. Can I use any switches and keycaps with my DIY mechanical keyboard? Yes, you have the flexibility to choose switches and keycaps that suit your preferences. Ensure they are compatible with the PCB and plate provided with your keyboard kit.

4. Can I modify the layout of my DIY mechanical keyboard? Many DIY mechanical keyboard kits support layout customization. You can adjust the layout by reprogramming the key assignments using the provided firmware or software.

5. Where can I find resources and support for building a DIY mechanical keyboard? There are numerous online communities, forums, and tutorials dedicated to mechanical keyboards. These resources can provide guidance, troubleshooting tips, and inspiration for your DIY project.

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