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Alps SCK series

SCK is an unconfirmed series of keyboard switch from Alps Electric. The shell is externally identical to that of KBB/KCC/SKCC series, but the slider is flat metal. There is seemingly no internal spring: the return spring sits on the outside. This is possibly a cost-reduced variant of KBB/KCC/SKCC without the complex contact assembly. It’s worth noting that the (truncated) circular raised area on the top of the shell serves a purpose in this design (to retain the external spring).

Curiously, the shell is all black, instead of the usual two-tone black and grey of KBB/KCC/SKCC.

These switches are known from Roland’s CSQ-100 and CSQ-600. The CSQ-100 Service Notes are from 1979, and the CSQ-600 Service Notes are from 1980, putting these switches in the same general timeframe as KBB/KCC/SKCC.

Variants

Typical Alps keyboard switches of this era had a code of the form Kxx10903. This switch has a totally different digit sequence to that of tact switches, which at present is impossible to decode, but in either case, implies that this was a huge series, which seems unlikely. There is also no explanation for why the series name begins “S” instead of the expected “K”.

SCK41167

This switch is used in the Roland CSQ-100 and CSQ-600 (Roland part 001-276); the following photos were provided by System J Synthesizers and were taken while they had a unit open for servicing; the photos are public domain.

Contrary to tact switch numbering, this has a 1 in the subseries position despite not being LED-illuminated.

This switch was supplied by Alps with a 1-unit relegendable keycap, which appears to be encoded into the part number.

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SCK41168

This is Roland part 001-275. This appears to be the same switch as above, but supplied with a 2-unit relegendable keycap (based on the incomplete labelling in the CSQ service notes).