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Roland® D-50 Keys, Spring, & Stops

Now that the keyboard assembly is out of the Roland D-50, you must remove the keys whose contacts are misbehaving, as well as a few extra keys on each side of them.

Turn over the keyboard and notice how the black and white keys protrude through the key frame.

Flexible, plastic strips (right) stop the keys from coming loose.  Pry up and remove the strips that stop the keys needing removal.

Roland D-50 Key Stops

Use a small blade screwdriver to pry up one end of the retaining strip and then just pull it off.

When reinstalling the strip use a little white glue to supplement the original tack and run your fingernail along the strip to make sure it's firmly seated.

Key Stops, aka. Retaining Strips

Next, remove the key springs with a needle nose pliers (right).

Remove the keys by first sliding them forward then lifting up on the rear.  Sharp keys won't come out until the surrounding white keys are removed.

To reinstall a key, first hook its front through the key frame (below), then slide the rear of the key into the proper slots.

Key Frame
Roland D-50 Key Removal

Notice here that the spring on the white key is more stretched than the one on the black key.  That's because it's a couple of coils shorter.

Keep the springs separate and make sure they haven't been installed improperly in the past.  There are 36 shorter springs for the white keys and 25 longer springs for the black keys.

The difference in spring tension yields a consistent playing action between the shorter, black keys and the longer, white keys.

Roland D-50 Key Spring Placement

Under the keys are the rubber contact strips.  Each strip has two contacts per key and mounts to a PC Board by way of little rubber nibs.

Identify Bad D-50 Contacts

Mark the positions of problem keys ahead of time (right).

Also mark where and in which way each strip reinstalls (below).

Make it easy to reorient the contact strips
Roland D-50 Key Frame, Circuit Board, and Contact Strips

Printed onto the circuit board are two pairs of switch contacts for every key.  When a key is pressed, each contact pair is closed by contacts in the rubber strip.  In other words, two switches turn on.

Due to a non-symmetrical design, one switch closes first, then the other.  The time between closures depends on how hard the key is struck and sets the MIDI velocity value.

The contact strips are quite flexible.  You can grab them by one end and gently pull them off the PC board.  The nibs will pop out of their holes two by two.

Key-Switch PC Board and Contact Strips

Roland® D-50

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