We provide the flexibility to customize your silicone rubber keypad by incorporating:
- Membrane circuit
- Printed circuit board
- Metal domes
- Polyester domes
This streamlined approach significantly reduces the time required for managing diverse sub-assemblies involved in keypad assembly. Our comprehensive process begins with the design phase and extends seamlessly to turnkey solutions. Allow us to provide insight into the meticulous assembly of the silicone keypad featured in your medical devices and manufacturing machinery.
Advantages of Utilizing Rubber Keypads:
- Cost-Effective Solution: Rubber keypads prove cost-effective on a per-unit basis, especially for larger volume projects, despite requiring initial investment in tooling.
- Outdoor Durability: Exhibiting exceptional resistance to extreme temperatures and aging, rubber keypads are well-suited for outdoor applications. The inherent properties of silicone rubber also provide resistance to chemicals and moisture.
- Design Versatility: Rubber keypads offer a wide range of cosmetic and aesthetic options, allowing for customization of tactile feedback. The keypad’s geometry can be tailored to create a 3-dimensional structure with firm tactile response and extended switch travel, customizable to specific requirements.
- Tactile Customization: The actuation forces and switch travel of rubber keypads can be fine-tuned according to specific preferences. Various elements such as carbon pills, non-conductive rubber actuators, or stainless steel tactile domes can be incorporated.
- Flexible Shapes and Sizes: Rubber keypads allow for unconventional shapes and sizes, and different rubber durometers (hardness) can be employed to meet specific needs.
- Color Variety: Multiple colors can be seamlessly integrated into rubber keypads through a flow molding process during compression molding. Customization extends to graphics through screen printing on the keypad’s top surface.
- Enhanced Durability: Polyurethane spray coating on rubber keypad switches contributes to increased durability, offering protection against wear and tear.
- Liquid and Dust Resistance: Innovative designs, such as a wrap-around design, can render rubber keypads impervious to liquids, dust, and gases.
- Backlighting Options: Rubber keypads provide flexibility for backlighting using LED’s, fiber optic lamps, and EL lighting. Laser-etched features enhance backlighting effects, and light pipes can be incorporated for customized and controlled illumination.
Design Guidelines for Rubber Keypads:
Tactile Response Customization: Achieving varied tactile responses involves adjusting factors such as web geometry and the durometer of the silicone rubber, which can range from 30 to 90 Shore A. The design allows for diverse key shapes and sizes, with keypad travel reaching up to 3mm. Actuation force can be tailored to specific needs, reaching up to 500 grams for certain keypad configurations.
Snap Ratio Adjustment: Modifying the snap ratio of the keypad influences the tactile feedback. Optimal snap ratios, typically ranging from 40% to 60%, strike a balance between feel and maximizing keypad life. Snap ratios below 40% diminish the snap-action feel while enhancing switch longevity.
Flow Molding Process: Involves introducing custom colors into the compression process, ensuring colors are molded directly into the silicone rubber. Additional customization options include screen printing custom graphics onto the top surface of the keypads.
Laser Etching Technique: This process entails removing the top coat layer of a painted keypad, typically black, to reveal a lighter-colored layer below, usually white. This allows back lighting to shine through specific etched areas. Combining laser etching with fiber optic, LED, or EL back lighting offers limitless possibilities for creative back lighting effects.