Some of us type for hours every day. Life is too short to work on a crappy keyboard. This is why mechanical keyboards are hot these days. Mechanical keyboards give you the feeling of quality with the opportunity of customization. You can purchase the keyboard with the switches that fulfill your needs. You can even choose your keycaps. The latest version of mechanical keyboards gives you the possibility to change every switch for the highest adjustability. You can hot-swap the switches for the ones that fit your needs. For example, gamers are swapping the switches under the WASD keys out for more sensitive optical switches. And they are using keycaps made out of special plastic that gives the fingers more grip. Small adjustments to become the best gamer in the world. Another trend I see is that people are customizing the USB cable of their keyboard. On Etsy and eBay, you can buy those cables. Some of them even offer cables with a steampunk theme. I see even the cables that are curly. When I was a kid every keyboard had this rounded cable. But one moment in time that changed. Now every keyboard is sold with a boring long thin noodle.
It’s a personal choice if you like a rounded cable or not. My own opinion is that I don’t like it much. Because they always collect more dirt. Nevertheless, I also like to make my own things. I read in a mechanical keyboard group on Facebook that turning a normal USB cable into a rounded one is pretty easy. Let’s try this out.
I have a box full of USB type-c cables. I found them really cheap on a Chinese gadget shop. A good volunteer for my experiment. This brand is offering braided cables that can transfer a high current.
The first step I did was to wind the cable around a cylindrical object. I found a long bolt in my wife’s hobby box. With the help of two cable ties, I tie the cable to the bolt. I used a nut to keep the cable under tension. When I was preparing the cable I filled the water cooker and turned it on.
Now its time to submerge the cable in boiling hot water. After five minutes, I removed the cable from the water and let it cool down. Leave the cable around the bolt while it cools down. When the cable is cool (and dry) you can remove the bolt.
My final thoughts. It’s super easy. But I feel a little disappointed. The cable lost its flexibility. It now feels really stiff. It stays in the shape I move it in. It doesn’t go return in its rounded shape. Maybe I used the wrong cable or the wrong temperatures. I have learned its possible and I will use this method when I have to mold cables in a certain shape. For example an HDMI cable that will stay behind the television for the next five years.