Refurbishing a 48K Rubber Keyed Sinclair ZX Spectrum – Pt.5 Case Cosmetics

Now the Spectrum’s board was fully refurbed and tested working, it was time to turn my attention to the case, keyboard and fascia. The original fascia looked a little tired and was dented so I had ordered a replacement from ZXRenew It arrived well packed and in good time.

I found it quite easy to remove the old fascia which gave me access to the keyboard mat and membrane. The membrane looked as if it had already been replaced at some point and was still fully working. I put that aside for reseating later on.

Case and Keyboard Mat Cleaned

Case and Keyboard Mat Cleaned

It was then down to washing the keyboard mat and case, carefully in mild soapy water and rinsing off. I took my time, trying to rid the keyboard mat of accumulated dirt. The bottom of the case was quite easy but, on the top half, I found the glue that held the old fascia on to be a real problem. I tried various substances but in the end, I pretty much used my nails and fingers to rub it off. Not a pleasent job. Perhaps I should have waited until I had a suitable substance available but I was keen to finish the refurb.

After drying it all off, the next step was to re-ink the ‘ZX Spectrum’ text in white. I had managed to get the remnants of the old ink off and I now used a Extra Fine Tip White Ink Pen from Mutant Caterpillar to carefully re-ink the letters. It was no easy job. Because the letters had been worn over the years, the edges were not very defined. It took me several attempts. I am happy with the outcome, although I need a lot of practice if I’m to get results like @ZX_Priestess seems to manage!

Once I was sure the ink had dried, I replaced the membrane, keyboard mat and prepared to fix the new fascia on.

Keyboard Membrane Back In Place

Keyboard Membrane Back In Place

ZX Renew had kindly included some 3M branded fixing strips to use with the fascia. I applied these one at time and cut a shorter length to fill the gap on the front.

Fixing Strips Applied

Fixing Strips Applied

Getting the backing off of the strips proved to be challenging. Patience required! Once I had all the strips in place, I checked over the new fascia and prepared it to be fixed. I then removed the other side of backing from the fixing strips.

Ready to Fix On the New Fascia

Ready to Fix On the New Fascia

To avoid marks on the new fascia, I used a pair of cotten gloves I have lying around. The fascia fitted perfectly and I went around the edges checking it had made contact with the fixing strips. The left and right sides required a little extra persuasion.

New Fascia in Place

New Fascia in Place

I then moved straight on to the next step, the final assembly.

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