What are Keyboard Stabilizers?
Imagine this: you’re deep into an epic gaming session. The world around you melts away as your fingers fly over the keys. But what’s that? A distracting rattle each time you hit your spacebar or shift key? That’s where keyboard stabilizers, affectionately known as ‘stabs’, step in to save the day.
These little unsung heroes, tucked away beneath your larger keys, are there to ensure a smooth and steady gaming experience. They work tirelessly to prevent key rattling every time they’re pressed. Whether they’re mounted directly onto your keyboard’s metal plate or on its PCB (that’s short for printed circuit board), they’re a vital part of your gaming setup.
You’ll find stabs in different mounting styles like clip-in, screw-in, and plate-mounted. But our guide here is all about giving some TLC to Cherry style stabilizers. So before we dive in, take a moment to check that you’ve got the right type of stabs for our upcoming journey into the world of keyboard maintenance.
Why Should You Lube Your Stabilizers?
Lubricating or ‘lubing’ your stabilizers is a simple, inexpensive upgrade that can significantly enhance both the sound and feel of your keyboard by reducing rattling, mushiness, and scratchiness. Despite playing such a crucial role in the overall typing experience, manufacturers often overlook this component. However, taking some time to modify your stabilizers can dramatically improve your gaming experience.
Lubing Stabilizers Without Desoldering
Most guides suggest removing the switches to fully access the stabilizers — a process that requires desoldering the switches from the PCB and can be quite time-consuming. However, if you’re short on time or lack the proper equipment for soldering, there’s a less involved method that allows you to lube your stabilizers while they’re still installed in the keyboard. Although this method isn’t as comprehensive as full band-aid mods or clip mods, it still significantly enhances how your stabilizers function.
You’ll need a few tools to lube your stabilizers without desoldering: a keycap puller, dielectric grease, Super Lube (or another appropriate lubricant), scissors, tweezers, an interdental brush or plastic straw/tape for applying lube in hard-to-reach areas, and cotton swabs for cleaning up any excess.
If you’re the proud owner of a hot-swappable keyboard – you know, the kind where switches aren’t fixed to the PCB with solder – you’ve got the freedom to fully modify your typing experience, and the best part? No soldering equipment needed. Isn’t that a game changer?
Discover which lube is optimal for your mechanical keyboard switches.
Identifying Your Stabilizers
Before you embark on the lubing process, it’s crucial to identify the type of stabilizers your keyboard uses. The most common types are Cherry-style and Costar-style. Cherry-style stabilizers consist of a plastic housing with a metal bar that runs under your keyboard’s larger keys. Costar-style stabilizers, on the other hand, feature two plastic pieces that clip onto the keycap and a separate metal wire. This guide primarily caters to Cherry-style stabilizers, but you can also apply similar techniques for Costar ones.
Finding Your Perfect Keyboard Lubricant
electing the perfect lube can be crucial to your keyboard’s performance. Take dielectric grease, for example. This choice is popular among keyboard enthusiasts because of its thick consistency. It’s great at reducing any annoying rattles and minimizing friction between the stabilizer parts. But let’s not forget about Super Lube, a synthetic lubricant loved for its all-round usefulness and impressive longevity.
Now, we understand that you might be tempted to slather on as much lube as possible. After all, more lube equals less friction, right? Well, not quite. Overdoing it with the lube could leave your keys feeling slow and sticky – not exactly what you’re aiming for.
So, remember, when it comes to lubing your keyboard: moderation is key! We know it sounds cheesy but it’s true! The balance between enough and too much can seem thin, but with a little practice, you’ll find the sweet spot that makes your keyboard sing just right.
And remember – whether you’re Team Dielectric Grease or Team Super Lube, we’re all in this together in our quest for the perfectly lubricated keyboard
Understanding The Lubing Process
Understanding why each step in the lubing process is necessary will give you better results. Applying dielectric grease at the bottom of the stabilizer helps reduce noise due to key wobble while using Super Lube on sides reduces friction between moving parts thus enhancing overall smoothness in keystrokes.
Maintaining Your Lubes Stabilizers
Just like any other mechanical device, routine maintenance of your lubed stabilizers will ensure they remain in top-notch condition. Over time, dust and dirt may accumulate within your keyboard affecting performance of stabilizers. Therefore, it’s recommended to clean and re-lube your stabs every 6-12 months depending on usage.
Q: What if I don’t have dielectric grease or Super Lube?
A: While these two are recommended for their specific properties, you can use other thick lubricants as well but remember, not all lubricants are created equal.
Q: Can I lube my switches without removing them?
A: Technically yes but it’s not recommended as you will not be able to properly lube all parts of switch.
Q: Can I use this method for all keyboards?
A: This method works best with mechanical keyboards using Cherry-style or similar stabilizers.
Q: Why do I need to lube my keyboard?
A: Lubing keyboard components reduces friction leading to smoother keystrokes and less noise.
Master the Art of Lubricating Your Keyboard Stabilizers: A Friendly Step-by-Step Guide
Step 1: Let’s Begin by Removing Your Keycaps
Start by removing keycaps from all keys with stabilizer bars — typically these will be your spacebar, shift keys, enter key and backspace key. Using a keycap puller will make this task much easier on both you and your keys.
Step 2: Prepare Your Tools
Next up is preparing your lubing tool – this can be anything thin enough to fit into tight spaces but sturdy enough not to bend under pressure. Plastic straws cut into thin strips or folded packing tape can do this job well.
Step 3: Apply Dielectric Grease
Dip your tool into some dielectric grease then insert it into each stabilizer through its bottom section. Don’t skimp on grease here; aim for two full applications per stabilizer.
Step 4: Apply Super Lube
Next up is applying Super Lube along each side of each stabilizer bar. This step is similar to applying dielectric grease but targets different parts of the stab.
Step 5: Clean Up Excess Lubricant
Finally clean up any excess lube with cotton swabs or paper towels leaving all parts clean then reattach all removed keycaps.
Remember that lubing keyboard stabs is a process requiring patience and precision – always test out how much lube works best for you before applying it liberally across all stabs! Happy typing!