Kyub: Build Instructions v1.0



Kyub Build Instructions (Full Kit, Wood Box or Clear Acrylic Housing) (1) Unpack your kit and check the parts against the part list:
Part List Quantity Item Wood Version Let us know right away if you are missing anything. hi@kyubmusic.com

Wood Housing

(2) Make a trial assembly of the box panels matching the diagram shown below. Be careful to check that the KyubMusic.com label (etched into one panel) is facing out--this will help ensure you have this right. To the right of that panel is a four-hole panel and to the left a two-hole panel. Directly opposite the kyub music panel is a two-hole panel. The kyub music panel and the opposite panel have small holes at the bottom for retaining the bottom panel. See the diagram above. The removable liner should be on the inside of the box (you can keep it on for now but should remove it before gluing). The box should fit pretty well together but any light sanding of joints or the like can be done now. If you keep the paper on the inside of the box, you will know which side to stain or color. Otherwise mark the inside to help keep track of how the box fits together.
Here is a diagram showing how the panels should be positioned. The periphery of the top and bottom panels are completely symmetric while the side panels are not symmetric. That should help get you started. Think of it as a cool puzzle that comes for free as part of the kit.
(3) Clean the smoke marks left from the laser cutting process. I use Formula 409 and a quick rinse and drying but I see on the web some people use white vinegar. Unless you like the smoke effect, of course.

(4) Staining If you want to stain the wood, this is a good time to do that before you get glue on the wood which will affect how the stain takes. I was not in love with the stain colors available at the hardware store and so did a combination stain using an under base of acrylic and then staining on top of that to bring the grain out.

It is easy to get a reasonably smooth finish with a can of clear laquer. Lay all the pieces out flat (this way you won't get runs) and spray a first coat. The first coat raises the grain and so it feels very rough. Lightly sand with 300 grit sandpaper until it feels smooth. Use a sanding block if you want to keep the edges from getting over sanded and losing the stain/color--or do this by hand if you like the worn in look. Then apply one or two more coats that are thick enough that the droplets fuse into a solid smooth surface. Read the instructions on the can and respect the humidity/temperature warnings. Do this outside--like in an open garage if you can.
You may want to choose a bare wood approach or use paint or the like. If you're painting the housing, you may want to wait until it is fully assembled. A good way to learn about painting techniques is to go on the web and look at how people finish electric guitars.

(5) Gluing the box Once you're satisfied with the stain (assuming you're staining the box) it can be assembled. Layout the pieces the way you will glue them together and peel back the inside liner. Place a wood glue or white glue on the tabs of each of the pieces. Do not place glue along the bottom glue the bottom panel in place. You need to be of the get inside of this box later.

Interesting tip: If you have some super glue, you can lay a bead down inside the box on each interface and be done pretty fast with no glue mess. Make sure your rubber bands don't touch the edges or they may get glued down (see the tip below with respect to the acrylic boxes)
Assemble the box and wipe off excess glue, then clamp it using rubber bands. A lot of rubber bands can add together to provide very high clamping forces but you can also use blocks to localize the forces in problem areas. Double check that you have the panels in the right position--trust me on this.
IMPORTANT NOTE: AS SOON AS YOU CAN, LIGHTLY FIT JUST THE EDGE OF THE BOTTOM PANEL IN PLACE AND MAKE SURE IT WILL FIT. DON;T PUSH IT ALLL THE WAY IN BUT USE IT FOR A SPACER FOR THE OTEHR PANELS. ONCE THIS THING SETS UP, IF THE CLEARANCES ARE EVEN SLIGHTLY TOO SMALL, THERE WILL BE NO WAY TO GET THE BOTTOM ON. BUT DON'T LET THE BOTTOM PANEL GET GLUED DOWN. IF THERE IS ANY ADHESIVE ON THE BOTTOM PANEL PULL IT BACK, AND DRY IT OFF AND TRY AGAIN

(6) Lacquer Once everything is dry, several coats of clear lacquer (spray can) or gloss varnish (what I'm doing here) make things look pretty good. Give this a couple days to dry. If you're painting the box this is the time to paint it as I noted above.

Clear Acrylic Housing

The clear acrylic housing should be pretty easy to assemble. As before, do a trial fit and double check to make sure that the panels are all on the right sides and facing out (you should be able to read the words "kyub music.com" on one panel. To the right of that panel is a four-hole panel and to the left a two-hole panel. Opposite the kyub music panel is a two-hole panel. The kyub music panel and the opposite panel have small holes at the bottom for retaining the bottom panel. See the diagram above.

Once you're happy with the fit lightly clamp the pieces together in a way that doesn't touch the edges of the Kyub. I use some Dixie cups (or short lengths of toilet paper roll--Thanks Pete!) to space the rubber bands away from the edges (where they could get glued to the box bad). For the production versions, I use Weld-on 4 which can be purchased from Amazon but plain old hardware store acetone seems to do a pretty good job. In both cases you lightly dispense the liquid (which has the viscosity of water) at the seams and it "wicks" in by capillary action. When you're using acetone, get real acetone nail polish remover doesn't seem to do it I think they put oils in it. Update: Target seems to sell a nail polish remover that is 99% acetone--it is the cheapest bottle 94 cents a writing. It has been suggeseted that you may want to leave the paper on the outside of the box to keep the solvent from getting all over everything. We haven't tried that, but it makes sense. Hopefully more reports from the field soon.

IMPORTANT NOTE: AS SOON AS YOU CAN, LIGHTLY FIT JUST THE EDGE OF THE BOTTOM PANEL IN PLACE AND MAKE SURE IT WILL FIT. DON;T PUSH IT ALLL THE WAY IN BUT USE IT FOR A SPACER FOR THE OTEHR PANELS. ONCE THIS THING SETS UP, IF THE CLEARANCES ARE EVEN SLIGHTLY TOO SMALL, THERE WILL BE NO WAY TO GET THE BOTTOM ON. BUT DON'T LET THE BOTTOM PANEL GET GLUED DOWN. IF THERE IS ANY ADHESIVE ON THE BOTTOM PANEL PULL IT BACK, AND DRY IT OFF AND TRY AGAIN

Note on SuperGlue (cyanoacrylate) (kragle:)). This ought to work but the fumes "develop" fingerprints on the acylic making a mess. Maybe if you clean the acrylic first and use clean gloves. We gave up on this after the first try. Plus if you've seen theLego movie you don't have any of this in your house.

Now for the electronics part:

If you don't know how to solder, links to some good soldering tutorial are here: link to soldering tutorial
Static Precautions: The Teensy can be damaged by static electricity. Try not to work on or near a static generating surface like a plastic countertop or synthetic carpet and touch a grounded object, for example, the metal case of an electrical appliance or a plumbing pipe or the like to discharge your own static before touching component pins. Keep the Teensy in the pink plastic bag when you're not using it. If the air is very dry and you are routinely drawing sparks when you move around the house, consider waiting on the assembly.

(7) Add connectors Cut the jumper wires about halfway along the wire between the pin connectors and strip and tin (with solder) the wire ends about 1/8 of an inch back. Tin one of the fingers of each of the hole plugs at its very tip (to reduce heat sinking that makes it hard to solder). Solder one connector wire to each hole plug. A soldering gun can be helpful if your soldering iron has low power, but this pre-tinning approch should work.

(8) Install the header pins on the Teensey and solder them at the top of the board. The pins extend downward along three consecutive sides of the boards. You'll want to use 2 11 pin headers and one seven pin header for the short side. It's really easy to get these in crooked so follow this procedure. Solder one pin of each header and then check the alignment of the headers against the board. Reheat the individual pins of the different headers to reposition them as necessary and only after the alignment is good solder the other pins in place. It should look like this:

(9) Load the parts into the PC board and solder them. All of the resisters are one megaohm resistors (brown black green stripes) and can be installed with the ends in either direction. Resistors look like this:

The capacitors can be installed in either direction but the capacitors that look like this:

Make sure the blue ones go where the blue ones are shown in the photograph below and the yellow ones go where the yellow ones are shown below. It makes a difference!

The voltage regulator looks like this:

Make sure the flat on the regulator case matches the outline on the printed circuit board and that the leads are not twisted so that they cross and touch each other.

Install the switches, sockets and header pins as shown in the photo. The header pins must face upward and you will need to cut one of the header pins to fill in the full set of pins. They cut easily with diagonal cutters at the notches between pins in the plastic support.

Here is what the board should look like when you are done.

All 11 resistors to the right are 1 megaohm resistors with brown/black/green stripes (not brown/green/black which is 150 ohms!)
Note that the LED and resisters (150 ohm resistors) with the LED (looks like a white gumdrop) are on the board (in the white square above) are part of the color organ upgrade for the Plexiglas Kyub--which may or may not be in your kit depending on what you ordered. There are also some expansion pins to the left that are not "populated". This is for advanced experimentation.

The LED version we bought (Ada Fruit) is slightly different from our PCB symbol. You will have to bend the leads very slightly to fit it in as follows. Nothing drastic! See below for details. (Thanks, Pete!)
(10) Plug the Teensy into the printed circuit board as shown: note the direction of the metal USB connector. There should be only one way you can install this and have all of the pins engage in the sockets.


(11) Mount the printed circuit board against the bottom of the housing using the screws and standoffs as shown:

(12) Carefully trim back the strain relief on the end of the USB cable that plugs into the Teensy. You don't want to cut into the metal conductors (or through them) but the strain relief prevents the cord from bending as sharply as it needs to to fit into the housing. Sorry, this is the only touchy part of this kit but we couldn't figure a way to avoid it. Take your time, use a sharp blade, and position your hands so that if you slip you don't cut yourself. You could also remove this material using a file or some coarse sandpaper and patience. When you're done, the cord should be able to bend around to pass under the printed circuit board inside the confines of the housing.

Tighten a grey wire tie on the USB cable as shown 5 and 1/2 inches from the metal tip of the USB connector in the Teensy. This will fit in the box and acts as a strain relief in case you pull too hard on the USB cable it doesn't unplug it inside the box. Cut the tail off of the wire tie (unlike as shown)


THIS MIGHT BE A GOOD TIME TO TEST THE TEENSY OUT WITH YOUR ARDUINO IDE (INTEGRATED DEVELOPMENT ENVIRONMENT THAT YOU HAVE DOWNLOADED (right?) AND AUGMENTED WITH THE TEENSY FILES AS DESCRIBED IN "TROUBLE-SHOOTING, TINKERING) Try to load the blink program and make it blink on a five second interval. Next load the Kyub program of your choice (see the documents page where you found this build guide). I highly recommend the Kyub-kulele to start. Although Kyub-kulele is the most fun, you probably want to load Kyub Basic which lets you test all the pads (Thanks Ruud) Later read the "how to play" document. Once you have done this, you can also try the troubleshooting tests (in the trouble-shoting document) to see if everything is working okay, by just tapping the pins next to the resistors with you finger to simulate pad touches.

(13) Plug in the pads to the housing. Orient the box oepning toward you with the the panel with www.kyubmusic.com is facing up. Only install the top 8 pads. The red dots show which way the solder connections should be oriented to give you the most slack

Thsi picture has the odd perspective of looking into the open box through the bottom. Note the tiny holes with show the panel that has the www.kyubmusic.com engraving.
The numbering of the pads is as follows: insert only the plugs 0-8 as shown in the diagram below.

Leave out the lower plugs including the G (ground) plugs for the time being but you can insert their connector wires through the appropriate holes for connection or wait to later. Tip the plugs slightly to lead with the edge of the plug having the soldered wire so this doesn't get caught.

Okay, so now connect each of the installed pads to a pin. NOTE: the first two pins to the right are not connected yet. Try elevating the box on a 3/4 inch block of wood to make this easier (see the photo below showing connection of the first two pins (pads 0 and 1)).


Here is what it looks like really with the acrylic box after two pads are installed.


Yeow-- brain surgery!

Finally connect the pads that are dangling free. Remember to pass their wires through the respective holes.

The connectors labeled G are ground connectors. The two grounds may be switched if desired. Make sure the USB cable is also plugged in at this point. After connection, the assembly should look like this:

or this for a wooden Kyub

Install the USB cable. Note how it curves under the board and around the single hex standoff. You should tie a grey wire tie on the cable--see the photo below--at a point just before the cable will come out of the housing.

Press the bottom into place carefully, watching that you don't pinch wires fatally. Don't forget the grey wire tie just inside the box.

(14) Fit the bottom of the housing into the housing gently checking to make sure you maneuver around all of the plugs. It should look something like this.

Okay, now you can press the remaining pads in place being careful with the wires. (15) Insert the screws into the tabs at the lower edges of the housing to hold the bottom in place and plug in the final hole plugs.

Congratulations. Assembly is complete. Did you remember to load a program into the Teensy (Kyub Basic or Kubulele are good choices) You can try it out now with your computer synthesizer. Generally the Kyub will connect in the same way that any USB keyboard would connect and ideally you'll confirm that the computer synthesizer works with the keyboard (or at least an the computer keyboard) first. Note the Ground pads do not play notes and when you use Kubulele, the 10 and 11 pads do not play notes but control which chord is available. Look in our documents listing for a Fast Start guide.

If you have trouble, see our troubleshooting guide.