you will find on this page:
membrane keyboard with real click pushbuttons is not a complicated
The transformation will be permanent and will allow you to
keep your original case and feel for the rubbery keys, but these
will now click under your fingers and ensure a much longer life
of your dear Spectrum. Of course you need some tools and the
generic ability to take apart and reassemble your computer without
damaging it. Also you will need to desolder the original keyboard
connectors and have some wrapping-type wire and some perhaps
some epoxy glue.
Pusbuttons like these can be found in many stores.
I got a whole lot from old equipment that I have taken apart.
VCRs have quite a few mounted on their faceplace. You could also
You will need 40 pushbuttons like these, possibly
all the same type and manufacturer so that the "feel"
is the same for each key. I used one extra button connected to
the RESET pin and hidden next to the "0" key.
(Only accessible through a pin hole)
This is where we start:
Take apart your ZX Spectrum and remove the keyboard. Hey,
there's no reason to be nice to the membrane connectors since
we're finally going to get rid of it at once! Gently straighten
the metal tabs that hold the metal plate to the plastic case
and release it along with the rubber keys.
This is what you are now working on. As you may faintly see,
I have already drilled tiny little holes in the middle of each
"key box", exactly in the center of the plastic little
bump which is already there.
Now you can drill 40 holes of the EXACT same size as your
replacement pushbuttons. Try it on a separate piece of plastic
to make sure your switches will go in as tight as possilbe.
Squeeze them in from the back after you flattened the pins
out to hold. After you have the whole set wired, you can use
a bit of epoxy glue to fill the gaps and make the keyboard very
The connections on the back are very simple. Each switch
has 4 pins. If you look at them, the ones that look farther apart
are already connected to each other, while the ones closer in
are the ends of the switch. Use some sturdy wire to make 8 horizontal
connections and some wrapping wire to make the verticals.
Wire your network by rows and columns like in the original
layout. You need to connect 8 groups of 5 keys. This way you
will end up with 13 wires to solder to the PCB in place of the
Use your membrane keyboard as your template to ensure your
lines match the original layout, or your keys will all be misplaced.
In any case, you can't do any real damage to your machine.
Well, that's pretty much all. Put the rubber keys back in
place, then the metal faceplate, bend the tabs and you're almost
I twisted my 5 wires and the other 8 and soldered the lines
to the PCB allowing a little extra for opening and closing. You
can use male/female flat connectors if you plan to open your
ZX often. That's up to you.