Notice!!!!!

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I have recently redesigned/improved the key and hinge pieces and it is now a one piece design. The instructions below will be updated as soon as I have the time. All new kits will ship with the one piece set.

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Skinstallation

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~You CAN do this!~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Here's what you need:

 

1) Patience. Sure, I'll be happy to sell you replacement pieces but I really don't want to. Please follow the instructions written here and use the videos so I won't have to set up a page for individual pieces.

 

2) Well lit, clean, neat, and comfortable work area.

 

3) Soft towels. These will be used to brace the WX5 in different positions since it has protrusions which make it difficult (impossible) to lay flat on it's back. You need to move it around a lot and I've found towels quick and easy to shape to cradle the instrument securely.

 

4) Single edge razor blade or tweezers. If you use a razor blade then use a dulled one. You won't be cutting with it, rather you'll be using it to lift the pieces from the backing material. A new sharp one can very quickly slice through and damage the piece. Tweezers will work as well if you prefer but I'm used to razor blades so that's what you'll see in the videos. Use whatever you're most comfortable with but it needs to be small and flat as possible, you'll see why.

 

5) 3/4" masking tape. I like 3m brand painters grade because the adhesive is perfect for decal application. Also, I've tested it on my WX5 as you see and it doesn't harm the key contacts when you stick it to them and remove it so don't use a cheap masking tape if you do the practice procedure shown.

 

6) Cotton Swabs. About a half dozen. You'll be using these to evenly apply the two most difficult pieces, those which lay underneath the upper and lower keys. One would do but since these tend to fray quickly you should flip it over often (if it's two headed) and change to a new one when it starts losing it's firmness. These are soft and won't leave deep scratches on the material.

 

7) A white cotton glove. VERY important. The final stage of applying each piece is to firmly press into place. DO NOT press and rub this material hard with your finger unless you intentionally want to add a brushed look to the material. Only light pressure should be applied with the fingertip as you place the piece into place. You just want to "float" it on. After it's in place put the glove on for firm pressure

 

Here we go:

 

 

 

<<<<<<<<<<TIPS>>>>>>>>>>

*ALL pieces are measured just smaller than the parts of the instrument they cover so there is room for error. You don't have to be absolutely perfect with your placement. They are very close, anywhere from 1/32" to 1/8". PLEASE pay close attention in the videos to the outer edges of the applied pieces. A good example of this is the key piece placement shown HERE.

 

*Even the practice kit is a permanent material. Once you stick it it's there. You CAN gently touch it to the surface VERY LIGHTLY then pull it away with no damage if you are off in your placement but once you press it firmly into place it's almost impossible to remove without stretching it so take your time.

 

*As you apply the pieces look straight down over the piece from above. Look at all edges. Allow the piece to "hover" until you're sure it's right. When you're sure gently lay it in place. The small flat keys and hinges are fairly simple. The rounded surfaces are a little tricky. Watch closely how I press from center out, ALWAYS working top to bottom (vertical motion) and NEVER left to right. This is the key (pun intended) to success and no wrinkles!

 

*Go slowly! Take your time. If you feel you just can't do this, ask a friend for help or even to do it for you.

 

*Yes, my instructions are very detailed, long and wordy. If you prefer not to read it all then please at least watch the videos carefully before you install your kit.

 


Practice Kit

 

Please note the key/hinge pieces have now been redesigned as one piece per key. This makes installation much simpler and eliminates a problem that existed with the adhesive coming loose at the curve at the hinge. Videos are not updated, however all kits now ship with the new one piece key strips shown here...

 

 

The "T" means "top.

 

The practice sets have also been changed to include one piece key practice pieces.

 

*Note - All but one of my hinges and keys are already in place. I left one unfinished for video purposes but the same technique applies to all.

 

*For ALL steps from here to the end Cradle the WX5 using towels as shown. This is EXTREMELY important. You don't want to be chasing a rolling WX5 while trying to precisely position these pieces!

 

*Note - These practice pieces are much thinner material and much more difficult to apply than the much thicker, more forgiving, comparably rigid metallic material the kits are made of. Once you feel comfortable with these practice pieces you'll be well prepared to install the skin.

 

1) Hinge to blade. This first video shows how I use the razor blade to lift the small pieces from the backing material. The blade should push it's way under the decal with it's dull edge, NOT the sharp edge. Once it's under the decal pinch it between the blade and your fingertip and lift from the backing. If you don't feel comfortable using a blade you might try tweezers. Your choice. Tweezers will do the job as well but you may have to lift the pieces slightly with your finger first to get the tweezers edge underneath the decal.

 

2) Hinge. The hinge pieces should all be applied first, before the key pieces. This is because the key pieces will overlap the hinge piece. Apply as shown. Note how I roll my fingertip over the rounded area onto the key surface. Always work from bottom to top. Press gently at first then more firmly as you go.

 

3) Key to blade. Blade lifting technique again.

 

4) Key.  Placement here is extremely important. The square edge of these pieces are made to overlap the hinge pieces but DO NOT extend around the curve of the hinge. I have added a close-up diagram of the placement of these pieces not showing the hinge pieces so you can clearly see the exact placement. Click HERE to see the diagram. Center the key strip with the hinge piece as shown then gently lay in place and apply pressure working from the hinge outward. Again, press lightly at first, then firmer with each pass. You'll get the feel of it. Do all these small pieces first. It's good practice for the bigger, more challenging ones.

 

          *CAUTION! One customer mentioned difficulty with differentiating between the long and short finger button pieces. These are very similar in size but are not interchangeable. Take extra care in determining which of these goes where. Measure if you have to.

 

5) Top Piece. I made the practice piece the 3 hole version. In your actual kit there are 3 options. Choose whichever one you want. The basic application principle is the same but the 3 and 2 hole pieces are easier because you have the LED holes to align with. This is the first curved body piece you will do. Pay attention to how I lay the piece gently in place then work vertically (up and down) and center outward, NOT left to right.

 

6) Battery Cover.  Basically the same technique as the top piece. Watch the video carefully. You should be getting the feel for it.

 

7) Bottom. Deceptively simple. Notice how I hover quite some time before touching it to the surface. Watch all edges. Go straight down with it, not at an angle or you'll be off center.

 

8) Make a pre-practice piece for the keybed pieces. I got the idea while making this video for a "pre-practice" piece you can make from masking tape. This will allow you to practice as much as you want before even using the practice piece here. Cut 3/4" masking tape 6 and 3/4" in length and get the feel of this. PLEASE do this!!!!!! It will really help and you'll be very glad you did when it come time to apply your beautiful shiny skin piece here.

 

Watch closely. As you place the piece under the keys actually touch the top, unsticky surface of the tape to the bottom of the keys. As long as it touches the keys it cannot touch the silver body. Don't let it sag but also don't stretch it. the keys are supported by a raised molded ridge on the silver part of the body. the skin comes very close to but does not touch this ridge. Very close means about 1/32". Not much room for error here, sorry. PRACTICE with the masking tape as many times as it takes to get it right.

 

Practice now spreading the piece on with the cotton swab as shown.

 

Pull the tape away gently as shown. Remember, the masking tape is not cut like the actual skin so it is touching the key contacts so pull slowly and gently. The actual skin pieces in the kit have application tape where you are about to place masking tape in the next step...

 

Repeat as often as you like.

 

9) Masking the practice keybed piece. Yes I could have done this for you but where's the fun in that? Seriously I left this off for a reason. So you would understand better why the masking is not all the way to the edge of the cutouts. Look closely at your skin kit. Notice how the masking is placed. Cut 3/4" masking tape approximately 6 and 3/4" and place on your practice piece as shown in the video.

 

10) Keybed Upper. Once again, lift the piece against the keys as you work it into place. Hold the piece very near the edges, just enough to hold it and control it. don't let it fall and touch the surface before you're sure it's in place. As with the masking tape, align the edge closest to the masking (that's why you left an edge visible) approximately 1/32" from the silver key support ridge. Lay gently in place.

 

Now, notice how I press each key while still holding the tape. I don't release the tape until the last key is pressed. This assures contact is even before I release it. Now watch how I work center out top to bottom again (not left to right) with the Cotton swab.

 

11) Keybed Lower. Same as above except this is the bottom piece.

 

 

Full Practice Kit video at low resolution (30,105kb)



*TIP* Wait to Peel away each practice piece just before doing these skins. This way you can study each practice piece and refresh your memory on spacing, techniques, what went wrong, what worked, etc., just before you do each one.



 

Skin Kit Application

 

Here it is, the real deal, let's do this!

 

1) Hinges. The same principle applies here as with the practice piece hinges.

Continue until all hinges are complete being careful NOT to apply a hinge piece to one of the non key faux hinges. For aesthetic reasons I only made skin for the actual hinges that correspond to keys and function.

 

2) Keys.  Same procedure as described for practice piece key pieces. Continue until all keys are complete. Wear Glove as shown in video for final firm pressure. Please note I have added a close-up diagram of the placement of these pieces not showing the hinge pieces so you can clearly see the exact placement. Click HERE to see the diagram.

 

     *CAUTION! One customer mentioned difficulty with differentiating between the long and short finger button pieces. These are very similar in size but are not interchangeable. Take extra care in determining which of these goes where. Measure if you have to.

 

3a) Top 3 Hole. Same procedure as described for practice piece. Wear Glove as shown in video for final firm pressure.

 

3b) Top 2 Hole. Same procedure as described for practice piece. Wear Glove as shown in video for final firm pressure.

 

3a) Top Solid. Slightly different procedure here. If you wish to use this piece I suggest first placing one of the 2 pieces with holes on first then lightly marking with a pencil around the edges so you will have a guide for placement - OR - place masking tape along the edges of a properly placed piece with the holes. This too will give an accurate set of lines to follow as you apply the solid piece. Your choice, but if you stick it in place and it's not right you'll WISH you had drawn a guide line set. Guidelines will allow you to place the piece on at the side and spread across assuring exact placement. I just guessed in this video, but I am used to centering and applying decals by sight as I have been doing it almost 20 years. PLEASE draw a guideline or use masking tape to mark at least the top edge and one side. As I stated at the beginning of this page I will sell replacement pieces but would rather not have to.

 

4) Bottom. Same procedure as described for practice piece. Wear Glove as shown in video for final firm pressure.

 

5) Battery Cover. Same procedure as described for practice piece. Wear Glove as shown in video for final firm pressure.

 

6) Keybed Upper. Same procedure as described for practice piece BUT I highly recommend once again practicing with a 3/4" X 6 and 3/4" piece of masking tape again at this point. This will refresh your memory about the positioning. Do you remember how close it comes to the silver key mount ridge? Do you remember any difficulties you had and how you solved them? Just remember don't touch the piece down to the surface until you KNOW it's aligned right with all three reference points (key mount ridges). Go slow, watch the video, see how long I hover the piece above before I finally lay it on? Patience pays here BIG time! Use the Cotton swabs as shown. Wear Glove as shown in video for final firm pressure.

 

7) Keybed Lower. Same procedure as Keybed Upper Piece. Wear Glove as shown in video for final firm pressure.

 

8) Keybed Joint. Easiest piece in the kit. Self explanatory. I made the pieces NOT touching on purpose. This allows more room for error. This little rectangle hides covers the joint left showing silver after the keybed pieces are finished.

 

9) Top Retainer Ring. Ok, so I hit pause instead of record. This is a simple piece anyway. It's got plenty of room for error. If you're slightly off no big deal. Mine's off a little too if you  notice. This REALLY adds a lot to the whole kit I think especially if you have the gold kit. That contrast of silver so near the gold with no black between is subtle but really nice. Just looks "right".

 

10) Sides. Ok, no practice piece for this but it's very easy! First of course, cut the strip with these two pieces in two as shown in the video. The video shows clearly a simple way to put these on. First hold in place to see where it needs to go. Peel back approximately 1/2" of the backing from the bottom end then stick the edge approximately 3/16" to 1/4" from bottom and center with the 2 lines you see on the side. You have about 1/32" of space, maybe a bit more. You'll see when you look closely. Follow the video, once you stick the bottom end firmly then peel off the backing from the entire piece and hold at the very end with one hand as you work your way up mashing lightly with the other hand. Go slowly making sure you stay within the grooved lines as you go. Mash it only lightly at first then put on the white glove and apply firm pressure.

 



If you ordered the basic kit you're done! From here onward is for complete kit and/or optional pieces.



 

Button Overlays. Not hard but a little tricky. Just center them and press firmly into place. You'll LOVE how these make the keys feel. Gives them a soft, warm feel. 4 extras are included.

 

Side Ornaments. I put these on application tape to make installation easy. Center these horizontally and vertically on the side pieces and up from the bottom of the skin approximately 1/4". Remove backing, position in place, then press from bottom to top gently with the first pass then firmer with each pass, go over it a few times. Be sure you have pressed all areas firmly before removing the application tape. Wow! That REALLY adds a touch of class! Definitely one of my favorite parts of this kit!

 

Top and Bottom Ornaments. VERY easy. Place on razor blade as shown, center, lay in place, gently press into place working from center out. Don't "rub" back and forth OR up and down on these, just press, or tap lightly, and then press firmly as shown.

 

Initials. I included these for all complete kit customers. Use them if you like, or not. You decide.

 

Full  Skinstallation video at low resolution (64,900kb)



Well, that's it... You're finished and my fingers are about to fall off!!!!!!!!!!

CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!!!



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