My IBM 4704 Keyboards

The IBM 4704 (further details here) uses application-specific buckling spring keyboards of relatively unique layouts. This page details the examples that I’ve come across personally.

Part Number 6019284

This is the 62-key keyboard for the IBM 4704. I obtained it in May 2011 after considerable research and discussion with other enthusiasts.

It connects to the 4704 using a cable fixed to the keyboard, with a DE connector with 4 populated pins.

This keyboard has been nicknamed “Kishsaver” by a subset of the Geekhack IRC community on account of me introducing them to it.

Stats

  • Identification: IBM part number 6019284, ID number 472X-41-13?, designated ‘Model 200’, manufactured in USA by IBM 45-1983
  • For use with: IBM 4704
  • Connectivity: DE, 4 populated pins, fixed cable, 4704-unique protocol
  • Key layout: 62-key 4704 alphanumeric layout
  • Keyswitches: tactile and ‘clicky’ buckling spring over capacitive PCB
  • Acquired: May 2011
  • Cost: $23.95 (including shipping!)

Part Number 6020218

This is the 107-key keyboard for the IBM 4704. I obtained it in September 2011.

It connects to the 4704 using a cable fixed to the keyboard, with a DE connector with 4 populated pins. Layout-wise, and based on when it was introduced, it is a step between the beam spring terminal keyboard layouts of the 1970s and the 104/122 key layouts of the 1980s and later, including as a result the 101-key enhanced layout of the original Model M.

Stats

  • Identification: IBM part number 6020218, ID number 472X-41-49383, designated ‘Model 400’, manufactured in USA by IBM 29-1987
  • For use with: IBM 4704
  • Connectivity: DE, 4 populated pins, fixed cable, 4704-unique protocol
  • Key layout: 107-key 4704 administrative layout
  • Keyswitches: tactile and ‘clicky’ buckling spring over capacitive PCB
  • Acquired: February 2013
  • Cost: $55

Part Number 6019273

This is the 50-key keyboard for the IBM 4704. I obtained this keyboard in February of 2013.

It connects to the 4704 using a cable fixed to the keyboard, with a DE connector with 4 populated pins. It is possibly the only grid/matrix-layout capacitive buckling spring keyboard, and is (as a concept, not my particular unit) one of the earliest to use transparent keycaps for custom-printed legends

Stats

  • Identification: IBM part number 6019273 (as sold; cannot be confirmed due to bottom sticker being absent)
  • For use with: IBM 4704
  • Connectivity: DE, 4 populated pins, fixed cable, 4704-unique protocol
  • Key layout: 50-key 4704 function grid layout
  • Keyswitches: tactile and ‘clicky’ buckling spring over capacitive PCB
  • Acquired: February 2013
  • Cost: $89.77

Additional Resources