Werk One Assembly Guide

Werk One underwent a lengthy design process with many prototyping rounds. With each prototype we learned more about what influences the sound, the type feel and how it can be shaped by very small adjustments.

In some way Werk One always remained an experimentation platform and many small tools how to adjust the sound and typing feel are still present in the final design.

Even if you are experienced with building custom keyboards, take your time with this guide, to learn few of such quirks.

 

 

 

1. Carefully remove the 12 M1.6 screws and take off the upper housing

and store the tiny screws safely

 

 

 

 

2. Flip your Werk One and attach the keyboard feet to the body.

Make sure that nothing is between the adhesive and the surface.

 

 

 

 

 3. Place the side-gaskets tightly into the sockets.

Attach the horizontal black poron gaskets to the corresponding surfaces on the bottom case.

We use an re-attachable adhesive, so you can readjust the gaskets position if needed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

OR

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Caveats and warnings

ESD

While the Werk.One PCBs offer full ESD protections, these will only work as intended once the keyboard is correctly built and located inside its enclosure - please make sure to work in a safe environment before unpacking and touching PCBs. An ESD safe workplace would be ideal, but a regular not-plastic desk will suffice. Do not touch the boards with wool or polyester fabric, or lay them down on such. If you have a grounded device nearby (central heating radiator or desktop PC for example) we recommend touching a bare metal part on them for a brief moment to get rid of all static charge from your body. Avoid rubbing polyester on plastic before and during assembly (for example polyester shirts on plastic chairs or anything else that builds up significant amounts of static charge).

PCB Assembly and soldering

Our PCBs offer robust industry standard surface coatings and lead-free solder joints that will not pose any health risk, but we still advise against touching solder joints, components or pads unless necessary. Handle the PCBs by the edges when possible. If you assemble a solder PCB, make sure not to get any excess solder on other PCB components or short any pads together, as this can potentially lead to irreversible damage on the PCB. Use a temperature-controlled soldering iron and the right operating temperature for your type of solder (usually between 280°C and 350°C), and do not heat pads for excessive amounts of time while soldering to avoid stackup delamination. Wash your hands with soap after handling any PCBs or soldering equipment, and make sure to solder in a well-ventilated area and open windows or use a quality air purifier with HEPA and activated carbon filter during and after soldering.

Assembly

Assembly should begin with the daughterboard. The Werk.One follows the "C3 Unified-Daughterboard" standard when it comes to sizes, connector types and pinouts. It should come with the USB cable already attached out of the box. If not, carefully plug the cable in now. The JST SH type connectors are directional. The connectors have one "ribbed" side and one side where you can see a part of the metal contacts through holes in the plastic. If the daughterboard lies flat on the table, the ribbed side should be pointing up. Do not apply excessive force - it should slide in smoothly. If that does not happen, double-check the orientation and make sure there is no dirt inside the receptacle.

If you want to test your PCB before building for manufacturing defects, do it now - connect it to the daughterboard cable (again, if the PCB lies flat on the desk, ribbed part of the connector should be pointing up) and plug the keyboard into your PC after making sure no metal items are below or on top of the PCBs and the daughterboard and PCB are not touching. Now open https://usevia.app in a Chromium based web-browser (e.g. Chrome/Chromium, Edge, Brave, Opera). Click on the "KEY TESTER" tab (stethoscope icon) and check if all switches work by carefully bridging switch pads with a pair of tweezers. Note that the default VIA key tester may not be able to detect all inputs, for example ISO only switches on solder PCBs or the FN button will not trigger a key tester response. After sucessfully testing unplug the keyboard from USB first, then the PCB from the daughterboard (don't pull on the cable, but on the plastic part of the connector only).

Next mount the daughterboard into the bottom case. Carefully put it in place and add all four screws. Tighten them only half-way at first, then after all 4 are in place you can tighten them fully. Begin with the top right screw (next to the USB connector). This screw is an important part of the keyboard's ESD protection, as it ties the metal enclosure of the board to USB shield, protecting more sensitive components. Please do not use plastic washers, rubber o-rings or plastic screws for this particular screw - it will increase the risk of ESD damage to your board during use. The other three screws are mechanical only and do not need to form a conductive connection.

Now take PCB and plate and start by mounting all stabilizers. The Werk.One has metal platings for all stabilizer screw holes, so there is no need for plastic or paper washers with screw-in stabilizers and the screws can not damage the PCB. The solder PCB has markings on the bottom which will help you align the stabilizers and switches correctly despite offering a lot of possible layouts. Next start adding switches (and do not forget the plate). Make sure you have no bent switch pins. This is particularly important on hot-swap PCBs, where a bent pin can in some cases rip a hotswap socket off the board, breaking the PCB. Use the markings on the PCB to use the correct switch positions on multi-layout PCBs, then carefully solder the switches in place.

Troubleshooting

  • VIA says "USB Detection Error. Looks like there was a problem getting USB detection working."

    1. This error means your browser or operating system is unsupported by VIA. You are most likely trying to access VIA from either Firefox or Safari. iPad OS, iOS, Android and OpenBSD will not work. On some Linux distributions you will have to manually edit system configrations to enable VIA. Known working are browsers like Chrome, Chromium, Edge, Brave, Opera, on either Windows, macOS or most Linux distributions.

  • VIA does not recognize my board and there is no keyboard input.

    1. Does your USB-C cable work? Try another cable, or test the cable with another keyboard/device.

    2. Unplug the board, plug it back in while holding ESC, then after a second unplug and plug in again.

    3. Install QMK Toolbox (https://github.com/qmk/qmk_toolbox/releases) (click yes when it asks if it can install drivers), open it, then plug in the keyboard and hold the button on the bottom of the PCB for approx. 1 second. Does it yield any output? If it says something of "STM32 Bootloader", download the latest Werk.One firmware from https://www.caniusevia.com/docs/download_firmware, load it in Toolbox and click "Flash".

    4. Did you plug both ends of the daughterboard cable in correctly? Try reseating them and check for dirt or bent pins inside connector sockets.

    5. Contact our support for replacements.

  • I can type, but VIA does not recognize my keyboard.

    1. Install QMK Toolbox (https://github.com/qmk/qmk_toolbox/releases) (click yes when it asks if it can install drivers), open it, then plug in the keyboard while holding ESC. QMK toolbox should write something of "STM32 Bootloader". Now download the latest Werk.One firmware from https://www.caniusevia.com/docs/download_firmware, load it in Toolbox and click "Flash".

  • I broke the USB connector and need a new daughterboard.

    1. The Werk.One is compatible with the "C3 Unified-Daughterboard" standard. Most "Unified daughterboard" compatible daughterboards sold by keyboard shops will work (do not buy C4 or S1 or later versions, those will not work), but we recommend buying only official C3 version models with full ESD protections to make sure the main PCB will be safe. If you prefer a genuine daughterboard, contact our support for replacements.