Where can you buy silicone rubber (elastomeric) buttons?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by kyle7119, Feb 16, 2018.

  1. kyle7119

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Feb 11, 2011
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    I pulled these buttons out of some old electronics and I am looking to purchase some more for a project. However, I can't seem to find anything like these on Digikey, Mouser, or Arrow. Does anyone know where these would be sold?

    (click on image to see full size)

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  2. Alec_t

    AAC Fanatic!

    Sep 17, 2013
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    Googling "conductive rubber" might help. There are various repair kits advertised for gaming switches/buttons.
     
  3. philba

    Active Member

    Aug 17, 2017
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  4. kyle7119

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Feb 11, 2011
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  5. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
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    The problem is commonly the copper that these buttons press against. The copper gets slightly oxidized. Try polishing the copper with a good quality soft pencil eraser. If the buttons suddenly work again, it issue was not the buttons.

    Then spray a tiny amount of silicone oil onto a cloth and wipe the copper until it appears dry. The small, small amount of oil keeps the copper from oxidizing again while still giving electrical contact. Do not get any oil on the buttons. The copper should not appear wet. If you get too much on, clean with alcohol and try again.
     
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  6. philba

    Active Member

    Aug 17, 2017
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    Or make a pcb with gold contacts. Not terribly expensive these days.
     
  7. kyle7119

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Feb 11, 2011
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    The buttons work fine. I just want to buy more for other projects.
     
  8. kubeek

    Expert

    Sep 20, 2005
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    Unless you find some chinese manufacturer that has surplus stock I doubt you will find anything, such buttons are a custom job for that particular device.
     
  9. philba

    Active Member

    Aug 17, 2017
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    This post got me interested. SFE and Adafruit sell something that might work. In particular, I'm interested in lighted switches. It's not clear how big the conductive rings are but it looks like the SFE ones are big enough to put a 5050 RGB LED under them. Would prefer the Adafruit ones because they are half the price...
     
  10. GopherT

    AAC Fanatic!

    Nov 23, 2012
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    Buy some used cordless phones and TV remote controls, cut the buttons out and use them as you wish.
     
  11. kyle7119

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Feb 11, 2011
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    Those are the only ones that I have found as well. However, they will not work because the rubber nubs on the bottom to hold in it place are configured for square groups of four. If you look at my buttons, it has 2 rubber nubs per button, allowing them to be cut into single buttons.
     
  12. cmartinez

    AAC Fanatic!

    Jan 17, 2007
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    I suggest you search digikey (or mouser, or newark) for high quality buttons that might meet your specs. Such as this one:

    [​IMG]
     
  13. KJ6EAD

    Senior Member

    Apr 30, 2011
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    If you want to search online, look for compression molded keypads.
     
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