October 2020

Focus FK-2001 (Asian 102 layout)

I found a Focus FK-2001 terminal keyboard in the garage. My dad first used it in the 90’s when he started programming. It’s honestly still pretty nice for being in storage for 10+ years.

Initially, to connect the 5 pin DIN cable to my modern computer, I used a 5 pin DIN to PS/2 adapter and a PS/2 to USB adapter.

the chain of adapters

The Chain of Adapters

First things first, I took it apart and cleaned it throughly. I dusted out the innards with an air duster and wiped down all the keycaps.

out of the case

Out of the Case

keycaps off

Keycaps Off

I found that some of the keys (space and left ctrl) seemed to be double pressing. I desoldered and swapped the troublesome switches with working switches.

alps keycaps

Alps Keycaps

alps switches

Alps style switches

I really like the beige retro color of tech from this time period. The switches are Alps SKCM whites or a clone, I’m not entirely sure.

Since the adapter chain is bit unsightly, I decided to use a Pro-Micro to adapt the keyboard to use USB.

The pins of the original cable connector are labelled C, D, G, and V for clock, data, ground, and voltage respectivley.

C, D, G, V labels on the pcb

C, D, G, V labels on the pcb

I connected these pins to the Pro-Micro’s PD0, PD1, RAW, and GND, then I flashed the Pro-Micro with Hasu’s terminal keyboard converter.

the setup

The Setup

Luckily, there was a hole in the back of the case that was just big enough for a USB mini port so I didn’t have to do any drilling.

pro-micro in place

Pro-Micro in Place

usb mini-b port

USB Mini-B Port

I didn’t have heat shrink at the time so I hotglued the wires for insulation and stability (don’t worry, I soldered them first).

I also used a stack of cardboard and electrical tape to support the Pro-Micro in the case. Not the prettiest solution, but no one’s going to see it inside the case.

restored FK-2001

Restored FK-2001