Keyboard ring DIY

How to make keyboard rings

How to recycle keyboard keys into a ring

by Penny Reid

Originally published April 2017.  Updated April 2020.

My iPad keyboard broke.  Luckily, the manufacturer sent me another one since it was still under warranty, however, they didn’t want the broken one back.  So what to do? Well, pull it apart of course to see if there were any interesting bits to make something with!

I decided I would take on a keyboard ring DIY project – that is, rings with keys on them!

I’m using resin to fill the back of the keys and then use resin as glue to attach them to a ring backing.

keyboard front view

 

keyboard side view

STEP 1: Prep the keyboard

First, I removed the keys from the keyboard.

My keyboard was from an iPad so you can see it is thin. If you do this project with keys from a regular keyboard, your ring will have a higher profile because the keys are generally deeper and thicker.


 

key removed

 

keys removed

Then, I chose a mix of letters, symbols and numbers.

Using a screwdriver, I popped the keys off.  This doesn’t require much effort, just a light touch.


preparing back of keyboard keys for resin

 

filling backs of keyboard keys with resin

 

keys covered while resin cures

STEP 2:  Fill the keys with resin

Next, turn the keys upside down and fill them up with resin.

I used Resin Obsession Super Clear Resin to fill the keys. Note, you could make this a side project that you do when doing other resin projects.  If you have any left over resin, you could keep some keys nearby and fill them up.  That would be a good way to ensure less waste.

Once I filled these to the top with resin, without over-pouring (better to under-pour in this instance then over-pour and have a mess to clean up), I covered them up and waited 12 hours for them to cure.

 


cured resin in keyboard keys

After the resin cured, I removed the cover.

I was happy with the results; no over-pours or casualties.  You can kind of see here in the picture what they look like when filled.  It’s difficult because the resin is clear.

A note here too that the resin smoothed out the little divots on the keys which could have pinched my skin if I hadn’t done the step first.

brushing on resin

STEP 3:  Mix more resin to glue on the ring findings

Next, I mixed some more resin and used a paintbrush to add a little resin to the back of the key to act as a glue to adhere the ring findings.

I was careful to make sure my ring was straight (or it would sit crocked on my finger) and that I had the orientation right (or I might end up with a sideways letter or number).  I checked back on the rings a couple of times in the first hour of curing, just to be sure that the ring didn’t slide off or move and was glad I did because some had shifted a little.

keyboard rings

 

ipad keyboard rings

STEP 4: Wear your rings!

By using resin as ‘glue’ these rings have the durability and strength to withstand anything!

There is so much potential! I can simply wear my initial letter ‘P’ or I could wear multiple rings and spell out stuff, like I did with these rings.

For days when I am feeling particularly warm and fuzzy I could wear these ‘hugs and kisses’ rings…

 

Is this keyboard ring DIY something you would try?  What would you substitute instead?

Unpublished Blog Posts of Resin Obsession, LLC © 2017 Resin Obsession, LLC

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4 Comments

Grace

This would make a great scrabble tile. Go to second hand shops, flea markets, or ask friends and neighbors if they have unused key boards. Then make the tiles. If you know someone who likes to do wood working, ask them to make a scrabble board. Great gift for family game night.

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Rhonda J Hunter

Now I wish I hadn’t got rid of my crashed ACER netbook – the keys were always popping off, courtesy of kitty claws. I could have made a nice collar for her.

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