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Anyone have any new (bizarre) hobbies?

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posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 12:32 AM
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I used to go shooting quite a bit, but thanks to the anti-gun nutjobs and the stupid politics in this country anything to do with shooting has become so prohibitively expensive I'd rather save my ammo. And then there was the PLAN-demic, faux-death plague which sucked up the universe like a giant black hole. I needed to find a hobby, or go insane (well, more insane).

I started to try to learn to play guitar. I discovered I am the absolute worst guitar player on planet Earth. So, I had to find something else. One day someone brought an old relic of an old IBM mechanical keyboard into my office at work as a novelty. It was actually in pretty good shape. I played around on it and remembered how much I loved those old IBM keyboards. I'd heard about people restoring them, so I thought that might be fun, and I went out onto ebay looking for some. Holy Cow!! I'm not the only one who likes these things! Several hundred bucks for one that doesn't even work. Then I found this whole niche world where people build these mechanical keyboards with the goal being to build something you like (obviously), but also to get as close to the old IBM's as possible. It was really interesting. After some research, I was hooked!

I just finished my first scratch-built mechanical keyboard, and it turned out really nice. It was a lot of fun too. Actually, it was a whole lot of fun. Total geek stuff for sure, but still fun. The really interesting thing about these keyboards is the way they feel to type on and the sound they make while doing it. It actually sounds like work getting done. On a side trivia note, did you know that IBM developed a special kind of a spring switch assembly for each key which was a unique and patented design. It was called the "Buckling Spring" switch. If you ever typed on a real authentic IBM brand keyboard you will know exactly what I'm talking about. Very satisfying experience.

Now, if you would have asked me 1-2 years ago if I'd ever consider building a computer keyboard when you can buy one for about $15 buck, I'd have probably said you were nuts. If you told me to build one of these things would cost upwards of $2-300 bucks to build, I'd have said you were completely insane. Well, I'm busy "thocking" away writing this very post on a brand new 'old-school' mechanical keyboard that I made myself. Whoda' thunk?

Anybody else develop some other bizarre hobby during the whole plan-demic? Or, maybe you like old keyboards too. Maybe we could even compare notes.

Cheers!



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 12:38 AM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

I got like 10 old ibm keyboards brand new in box from late 70s into the 90s 🤫



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 12:51 AM
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a reply to: Brotherman

DUDE!! Those things are worth big bucks, depending on which ones you have! The ones which are worth the really big money are the IBM Model "M" and Model "F" keyboards. The model "M" ones are the most famous and most sought after. They were manufactured starting in '85. The model "F" keyboards were made starting in '81, but mainly for servers, so they're pretty rare (and they had some issues). Really, any of the IBM keyboards from about 1980 thru about 1989 are treasures for a keyboard.

If you search the web on the "IBM model M keyboard" you will get thousands of hits. Here's a little Wiki article on the fabled Model M.

IBM Model "M" keyboard....

edit on 3/4/2022 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 01:11 AM
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It was called the "Buckling Spring" switch. If you ever typed on a real authentic IBM brand keyboard you will know exactly what I'm talking about. Very satisfying experience.

Heck no .
In an office environment it sounded like a .50 cal going off .



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 01:16 AM
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I know it's gonna sound weird, but as a guy who makes his living playing guitar, I find it odd that people play for fun. I guess that's because like any job, you don't want to do your job when you're not at work. It's sad, kinda, I've reached a point in my life where something I used to love has become passe.

As for new hobbies, I always had cool cars (heck, my user name was created from when I owned a 1970 Cadillac Sedan Deville) , but I bought a newer Dodge Challenger and I've been taking it to car shows, which I didn't really do before. So now I'm doing a lot of detailing, cleaning, etc.
edit on 4-3-2022 by BigOldCaddy because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 01:29 AM
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a reply to: Brotherman

If you've got some model "F" keyboards and are interested in selling a couple, I'd definitely be interested in taking them off your hands for a mutually agreeable amount.

Personally, I think the model F's are even better than the model M's. A lot of people didn't like them because the key sound is a lot sharper, but they also sounded more precise than the model M's.

The keyboard I just got done building is based off of a model M, using the following components:
- MK keyboards "Typist" case
- Cherry brand "Red Silent" (key) switches
- PBT keycaps in a "SeMi" profile (which is between an "SA" profile and an "OEM" profile)
- Keys are all side labeled, so the characters appear on the side face of the key and not the top
- All switches have been disassembled and lubricated
- O-rings installed on all keycaps "Clear" version
- All switches are soldered in, PCB is not hot-swappable (which is how I wanted it)
- Aluminum cover plate and custom foam filled case
- Keycaps are in a carbon scheme (white, orange and black)
- 111 key layout (which includes (pt scn, scl lk, pause, calc, and 3 volume keys beyond the standard 104 key layout), so it's really more of an F model than an M model. I like full-sized keyboards better because of the number pad which I use quite a bit. So, it's considered a 100+ % keyboard (as opposed to the 75'sand 65's which are so populor with gamers.

This thing sounds like a million bucks. More of a click than the oft sought after "thock" which I don't like as much.



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 01:35 AM
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a reply to: Gothmog

It depends; if you look at the components I put into mine you can see I've knocked down the sound considerably but retained the tactile feel of the buckling spring action. Technically the buckling spring key is a Cherry "Brown" switch, which clicks on the way down and the way back up. What most people didn't like about the buckling spring was two things, one was the "spring ping" and the other was the key bottoming out. The 0-rings I put under the keycaps keep the keys from bottoming out so there's no .50 cal sound, and the foamed case knocks the echo out almost completely. It's not completely silent, but you could use it in a 'cube hive' and not drive anyone bonkers. I don't like loud at all (on keyboards).

edit on 3/4/2022 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 01:39 AM
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My new hobbies are old hobbies that are new again in my retirement years.

I was once upon a time a rather big player in the fastest car in town game and determined that a fast retirement car would be the cat's meow. Found a 1992 Dodge Stealth twin turbo with 35k on it for less than $12,000.

Then I decided that the aero of the car could be updated for less drag and more downforce so I hired an aero consultant (Kyle Forster) who happened to have worked for the Mercedes Formula 1 team on their aero package. After that a magazine got wind of what I was doing and did an article about my retirement car.



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 01:40 AM
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a reply to: BigOldCaddy

Doesn't sound weird to me at all! Like you, that's the reason I didn't get more into hobby electronics...because I do it at work every day too. So that would be like coming home from work and (after taking care of livestock), then going right back to work again. No thanks.

I guess keyboards could be considered electronics of a sort, but this had more of a useful end result.



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 01:46 AM
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a reply to: billxam

Wow! Now THAT's cool! I wrenched on cars and trucks too much in my youth to really get back into that. Plus, everything I like is now nearly pushing 60 years old, so there's a lot more effort and time to restore one. I've toyed with the idea thought, and I definitely have the room to do it. I don't know, maybe down the road a bit; I'm sure the keyboard thing will get old after a while, but I've still got a couple dozen or so more builds I'd like to do.

Your Stealth sounds really cool though. I knew a guy who bought one of those cars and just raved about it. It's the only American made mid-engine car, isn't it? Did the Corvair count as a mid-engine?

ETA - I always thought that car had a lot of potential for Chrysler, and I was bummed when they went with a traditional front-engine for it.

edit on 3/4/2022 by Flyingclaydisk because: Still getting used to typing on an old mechanical keyboard



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 01:56 AM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

I count moths, so far I've counted 89 since 1985. 🍻



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 02:00 AM
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originally posted by: BigOldCaddy
I know it's gonna sound weird, but as a guy who makes his living playing guitar, I find it odd that people play for fun. I guess that's because like any job, you don't want to do your job when you're not at work. It's sad, kinda, I've reached a point in my life where something I used to love has become passe.

As for new hobbies, I always had cool cars (heck, my user name was created from when I owned a 1970 Cadillac Sedan Deville) , but I bought a newer Dodge Challenger and I've been taking it to car shows, which I didn't really do before. So now I'm doing a lot of detailing, cleaning, etc.


As a guirar player of 29 years I can relate to this. I used to have fun learning songs I loved, and loved wiring new riffs and melodies but it kinda got stale. However!

I just purchased an electric piano and my love for music has been completely invigorated!

Got any links to your stuff?

🍻



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 02:02 AM
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a reply to: Albert999

Man, I would love to know how to play the musical keyboards better. I contemplated that too, but I think my timing just isn't good enough. I can play a little bit, but not very well. My critical ear amplifies even the tiniest error more than the best amp!

They sure do have some really nice feature-rich keyboards out there now though.

Congrats to you!


edit on 3/4/2022 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 02:31 AM
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Thanks man.

It sounds like you and I are (were? 😁) on a similar skill level piano wise.

Once you've lean a few specific chords (shapes) you're good to go. That should take you 5 mins to learn, and about 15-30 mins practice to get it fairly fluid and half decent.

I'm not starting on music yet. I do play by ear, but I'm also training my ear for perfect pitch using a fun app. Then I watch youtube vids under the search ' Things I wish I knew when I started l piano (get down some tips and tricks) then I practice songs/music I'd love to play.

So far ( Had keyboard 2 weeks now) I can get by playing Still Dre, the 1st 16 bars of Hill street blues, half of the cheers theme tune, 1st 16 bars of Clare de lune, the intro to Trouble Coldplay lol I've got other random stuff I wanna learn too.

Everything you need is literally at your fingertips 😎🎹🎧



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 02:51 AM
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My Mrs did a job a bit back where she was basically stood at a gate to stop people entering a secure area where the UK family were at an open day at a royal palace.

She got so bored she was counting how many legs the dogs being walked around the grounds had.




originally posted by: Albert999
a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

I count moths, so far I've counted 89 since 1985. 🍻




posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 03:09 AM
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originally posted by: Flyingclaydisk
a reply to: Brotherman

DUDE!! Those things are worth big bucks, depending on which ones you have! The ones which are worth the really big money are the IBM Model "M" and Model "F" keyboards. The model "M" ones are the most famous and most sought after. They were manufactured starting in '85. The model "F" keyboards were made starting in '81, but mainly for servers, so they're pretty rare (and they had some issues). Really, any of the IBM keyboards from about 1980 thru about 1989 are treasures for a keyboard.

If you search the web on the "IBM model M keyboard" you will get thousands of hits. Here's a little Wiki article on the fabled Model M.

IBM Model "M" keyboard....


I inherited a bunch of old computers and things like that IBMs commodores an old “portable” that weighs a million pounds with a 6” crt screen in black and white, oscilloscopes etc. my uncle was into computer security back in the day after he got out of sigintel during Vietnam. He was a cool dude, eventually brain cancer got him.



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 03:11 AM
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originally posted by: nonspecific
My Mrs did a job a bit back where she was basically stood at a gate to stop people entering a secure area where the UK family were at an open day at a royal palace.

She got so bored she was counting how many legs the dogs being walked around the grounds had.

Lol your Mrs sounds cool asf 😁👌🏼



originally posted by: Albert999
a reply to: Flyingclaydisk

I count moths, so far I've counted 89 since 1985. 🍻




posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 03:11 AM
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originally posted by: Flyingclaydisk
a reply to: Brotherman

If you've got some model "F" keyboards and are interested in selling a couple, I'd definitely be interested in taking them off your hands for a mutually agreeable amount.

Personally, I think the model F's are even better than the model M's. A lot of people didn't like them because the key sound is a lot sharper, but they also sounded more precise than the model M's.

The keyboard I just got done building is based off of a model M, using the following components:
- MK keyboards "Typist" case
- Cherry brand "Red Silent" (key) switches
- PBT keycaps in a "SeMi" profile (which is between an "SA" profile and an "OEM" profile)
- Keys are all side labeled, so the characters appear on the side face of the key and not the top
- All switches have been disassembled and lubricated
- O-rings installed on all keycaps "Clear" version
- All switches are soldered in, PCB is not hot-swappable (which is how I wanted it)
- Aluminum cover plate and custom foam filled case
- Keycaps are in a carbon scheme (white, orange and black)
- 111 key layout (which includes (pt scn, scl lk, pause, calc, and 3 volume keys beyond the standard 104 key layout), so it's really more of an F model than an M model. I like full-sized keyboards better because of the number pad which I use quite a bit. So, it's considered a 100+ % keyboard (as opposed to the 75'sand 65's which are so populor with gamers.

This thing sounds like a million bucks. More of a click than the oft sought after "thock" which I don't like as much.



I’ll look and see what is here and if I’m willing to deal and send you a u2u



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 04:55 AM
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It makes me laugh to picture someone succumbing to peer pressure and starting a model railroading hobby.



posted on Mar, 4 2022 @ 07:05 AM
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a reply to: Flyingclaydisk
I have a bizarre hobby, but Augustus would revoke my membership if I talked about it. ATS probably wouldn't take kindly to it either, so...

I wouldn't call this one bizarre, but it's different. I am the family genealogist, so when a 96 year old distant cousin passed away some years ago, her family sent 5 boxes of her stuff to me. I have spent a considerable amount of time going through her life in the way of pictures, correspondence, and other documentation.

She led a very glamorous life in some ways, and it has been interesting to read the correspondence both sent and received ranging from the early 20th century to the dawn of the 21st. Especially when there are 100's of pictures and news clippings to go with all of it.

As stated, not really bizarre, but not something I've never done before in such depth. She was my predecessor as the family genealogist and left me quite a bit of information.

On IBM keyboards, Gothmog is right, although the o-rings do help.




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