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Brother Industries



Brother Industries, Ltd. (Japanese: ブラザー工業株式会社) is a Japanese manufacturer, founded in 1908.



Brother seldom if ever produced keyboards for off-the-shelf purchase, and it is possible that they did not even have any reference models. Brother keyboards were custom-produced for keyboard and typewriter manufacturers and for their own typewriters. In some cases, the Brother name appears inside, but quite often it does not. Examination of various keyboards suggests several ways that Brother can be confirmed as the manufacturer.

The UL file number E57888 and the CSA file numbers LR53866 and LR94080 appear to represent Brother keyboard products, and can be used to identify Brother as the manufacturer without opening the keyboard. (Although these codes are generally only known from IBM keyboards, they also appear on a single Unisys keyboard that appears to corroborate the theory that these codes represent Brother and not IBM Japan.)

Membrane keyboards may have the Brother logo present on the membranes. The presence of the logo is not necessary for identification, as the PCBs and membranes use a distinctive part number format that can be used as identification instead. In rare cases, a 556-series code is included on the outside of the keyboard.


Keyboard Switch type Brother code Membrane/PCB code Date Brother branding Reference Notes
IBM RT keyboard 556-712-01 ca. 1985 Bitsavers Appears to be an IBM 6298389 with different labelling
IBM 6298389 Brother capacitive dome over PCB B48U077-2 (PCB) 1985-03-25 Flickr PCB also marked GCMK-81X (certification?) and KB-77-3
Brother AX-20 Plunger over dome over membrane B482063-4A ca. 1987–88 Typewriter KAref
Unisys PCK101-KBD Rubber dome over membrane 556-352 B48J240-1 (PCB)
ca. 1991 Membranes Flickr FCC ID B3QPC101
IBM 79F0167 Brother buckling spring B48J243-3 (PCB) ca. 1992 Flickr
IBM 6247440 Rubber dome over membrane B508195-3-A
1994-04-14 (PCB) Membranes Deskthority