Why have a clear keyboard?

Would it be possible to switch the keycaps for the function keys and keep the rest blank ?

Framework has said that the keycaps are not designed to be removed. Which is normal for laptop keys, I believe. A few people have tried anyway, some have had success, others have broken keys.

Do you mean switch the function keys to non blank? If so, you can get black stickers from Keyshorts and put them just on the function keys if you want. Then you’d have sort of normal looking function keys and the rest blank.

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Yes

Ah perfect that’s what I need !

On their site, it says the custom set for the Framework keyboard comes with all keys, but to contact them if you want to leave some blank. I just ordered a full set and will only put on the ones I want.

@BigT do you remember how you ordered your keyshorts keycaps? Did you end up paying $90+ for “perfect fit”, transparent background, black letters, and choose a custom language and fill out their template for how to label keys? Seems like a heck of a lot of money that ought to be be somewhat commonly desired.

I tried selecting their “English [US]” language and it doesn’t even appear to come with the special keys, just letters. All I care about is special keys, not letters.

If you’re able to share a pic of how your keycaps look with the backlight on that would be helpful to me personally.

I’m seeing more discussion in Keycap stickers for the clearcap options and Blank Keyboard - how to adapt for its use? and What is the best way to create custom layout, but nothing is definitively what I’m looking for.

@Micah_Lindstrom It was a bit expensive, but it wasn’t $90. Here are the details from my order:
Fit: perfect fit
Brand: Other
PC Model: Framework 13
Device Enter: US
Background type: transparent
1st Language Windows: English (United States) [US]
1st Language Position: upper left
1st Language Color: black

It was $62. It came with stickers for all the keys on the keyboard, including all the special characters. Still awfully expensive, especially since I really only wanted the special characters, but I liked that it would be custom fit for the FW 13 keys and I decided to try it out. I haven’t actually put any of the stickers on yet because I had fewer issues without any labels than I expected. But I still plan to put the top two rows of stickers on (function and number rows), mostly because once in a while I want to reach out and just press one of those keys and without the muscle memory of my hands being on the keys, it takes me a moment to remember what key is what, so I’d like to have those labels on there.

I’ll try to put them on sometime this week and will post a picture.

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My only reason for getting the blank keyboard is to avoid the awful “Windows” key. Has anyone been able to customize one key like that for keyshorts? I have sent two inquiries to keyshorts about ordering a set like this for the blank RGB 16 keyboard but they have ignored me both times.

I asked something similar and got the following semi-clear answer :
« Unfortunately, we can’t use Debian logo. In case of Windows logo it’s a different story because the logo is already there and for such purpose it’s ok to print it. »

I didn’t insist but the summary seems to be : no they don’t make custom logo keys.

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well that just shatters my plans :smiley: Guess that key is remaining blank for the time being.

probably so you can feel like this:

I have a blank HHKB keyboard, you get used to it after a while.

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I finally got around to putting on the function row and number row stickers. I imagine I’ll leave them on, but I’m glad I didn’t put them on the letters. The feel of the stickers is okay, but I can feel the edges of the stickers as my fingers slide around the keys. I imagine I’d get used to it, but I do prefer the feel of the keys without the little edge created by the stickers.

The labels show up better in person than they do in the picture, even without the backlight on.

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Awww yeah, that looks sick, thank you for sharing! Good to hear about feeling the edges of the stickers. That reinforces my decision to do the same with no labels on letter keys. Although, I was thinking if I have to get labels anyway, maybe it’d be fun to get labels that include qwerty+dvorjak+colemak…

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Looks like Keyshorts has a new configurator specific for FW16 and FW13 at Framework Keyboard Stickers (Colored Background + Colored Symbols), along with a 15% discount code FRAMEWORK15. I’d get the Transparent Background + Colored Symbols version. They also have Colored Background + Transparent Symbols which looks more like a regular backlit keyboard.

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That’s awesome! Now they just need to add an option to change that ugly Windows key.

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Followup to this. I sent in an order for a Framework 16 sticker set from Keyshorts and asked specifically to change the Windows key to a Linux Tux. He responded to me this morning stating “Sure, we’ll use tux instead of Windows logo :)” so I’m a happy camper.

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IMO it’s a bit backwards that a blank keyboard is more expensive

Do you mean blank, or clear? Either way, the first possibility is the same. They probably sell fewer blank and clear keyboards, but it still requires a separate process to make the keys. So it could just come down to economies of scale.

As for the clear keyboard, it’s possible the keys are more difficult/expensive to make. I could be wrong, but I doubt the normal keys are just the clear keys painted. I’m guessing it’s a different material and process to mold the clear keys. Could be more expensive.

Edit: I stand corrected on point two. The standard key are, indeed, clear before being painted white, then black. This doesn’t guarantee they are the same material, but it’s probably more likely than not.

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I believe all the keys are transparent by default and they just put a black foil on the “normal” variants. Otherwise you couldn’t have the letters backlighted.

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No doubleshot keys, huh?