Split Ergonomic Keyboard Build


I am going to build a split ergonomic keyboard. It will allow for more natural hand and wrist positioning, hopefully reducing my wrist pain and “emacs pinky”. I picked a smaller keyboard layout to carry it on the go. I want to modify the keyboard by 3d printing my own case and soldering on silicon pads to improve the switches.

As someone interested in low-level programming and binary exploitation, I plan to dump the firmware to reverse-engineer the protocol. Then I can write my own toolchain in C++ or rust to interact with keyboard keybindings instead of QMK, the community default. This will be my first time playing with real hardware instead of running it on a virtual machine.


I start the project by building the keyboard and learn to 3D print a case, as the colors I want are out of stock. I’ll also learn to solder as the silicone feet for hot-swapping capabilities must be soldered on. After assembly, I will try to dump the firmware, but if unsuccessful, I’ll find it online. Another option is to reverse-engineer the QMK toolchain to understand how it interacts with the board to flash information, using a dynamic man-in-the-middle approach or statically use a decompiler like binary ninja. Then I can create my own toolchain to flash new keybindings to the keyboard. C++ seems to be the best language for this toolchain, and since I already know C, it shouldn’t be too hard to pick up. The keybindings would be my dream layout, Dvorak with a third meta key for emacs and a layer toggle button so that my hands don’t have to travel too much hit keys like backspace and {}.


What materials will you need for your project? Where will you get them? How much does it cost? Please include all materials, including components you already own. Make sure to factor in shipping costs and sales tax.

Iris Rev 7 PCBhttps://keeb.io/collections/iris-split-ergonomic-keyboard/products/iris-keyboard-split-ergonomic-keyboard$89.33
Iris Plateshttps://keeb.io/products/iris-keyboard-case-plates-phoenix-edition?variant=39748837113950$29.99
Iris Middle Layerhttps://keeb.io/products/iris-keyboard-case-plates-phoenix-edition?variant=39748837113950$27.99
TRRS Cablehttps://keeb.io/products/trrs-cable?variant=46391966598$3.99
Keeb.io Shipping$9.54
Milk/honey keycaphttps://www.amazon.com/Keycaps-Japanese-140-Key-Fullsize-Keyboard%EF%BC%88XDA/dp/B09PH272L7?th=1$24.99
Amazon Shipping$0
Boba Switcheshttps://ringerkeys.com/products/gazzew-boba-u4-silent-tactile-switches?variant=32825570000978(Looking at other sites too)$39.99
Swagkeys Shipping$5.69