It’s been a few days since I’ve lubed the Staebies, and so far…they feel and sound great! While they’re impressive completely stock, they do have some wire ticking and rattling when they’re bone dry – lubing them have pretty much eliminated these undesirable qualities.
If you’ve got the Staebies – or you’re planning to get some, since it’s still in stock at the time of writing – here’s what you need to know about lubing them. How much lube should you apply? How thick can the lube be? How do they compare to a properly tuned Durock V2, the “gold standard” for screw-in stabilisers? Read on to find out!
Okay, first up, what lube should you use for the Staebies? For the housing, I used Krytox 205g0, which works great with the Staebies. They don’t feel mushy at all after lubing, though I was careful to not use too much lube. I only applied lube to the inner housing of the Staebies too; the stems were not lubed at all as to not run the risk of overlubing.
Next, we have the wires. Usually, I use Krytox XHT-BDZ on stabiliser wires, which is quite a bit thicker than the “go-to choice,” 205g0. Given the tight tolerances of the Staebies, I was worried the BDZ lube would be too thick for the wires, so I contemplated using the latter instead.
Well, I ended up still using the BDZ lube; the thicker consistency of the lube is just so much easier to work with than the thinner, more watery 205g0.
Thankfully enough, the XHT-BDZ lube was not too thick for the Staebies’ wires. The stabilisers are not binding, they still feel very responsive, and most importantly, there’s virtually no more wire ticking or rattling. In fact, I would say they compare very favourably to properly tubed Durock V2 stabilisers.
When I say “properly tuned,” I’m not just talking about a lubed Durock V2; this has a tendency to tick after just a few days of extensive use (in my experience, anyway). Instead, I’m talking about a lubed, holee modded Durock V2, which takes much longer – and a lot more work – to apply effectively.
So yes, I would say that lubed Staebies are just as good as lubed, holee modded Durock V2 stabilisers – that really speaks volume to how good the Staebies are.
More importantly, it takes far less effort to tune the Staebies to sound and feel great. Not only does this save a lot of time (and frustration), I reckon even those who are new to the hobby can tune the Staebies well.
That’s not to say the holee mod is particularly difficult to do, but it does take some finesse to properly install the band-aid into the opening of the stems where the wires will sit. You also run the risk of the stabilisers getting mushier over time as the band-aid collects dirt and what not.
However, there is one area where I feel the Durock V2 is still superior: smoothness. Comparing the Staebies to the Durock V2 stabilisers side by side, the latter do feel a hair smoother. This can be attributed to the “looser” nature of the Durock V2, which does make for a smoother downstroke.
Because the Staebies have such tight tolerances, they do feel a little…well, “tighter” than the Durock V2. This tightness comes from the increased resistance in the downstroke of the Staebies, but don’t get me wrong, they don’t feel scratchy at all.
Also, do note that I’ve only lubed the all-clear version of the Staebies, which has polycarbonate housings. While I’m confident the black variant of the Staebies with nylon housings will perform similarly, the different material should offer a slightly tighter, “firmer” downstroke with a deeper sound profile.
Oh, one last thing: be a little bit more generous when you’re lubing the wires of the Staebies. Like I mentioned, I was a little worried the XHT-BDZ lube would be a bit too thick for the Staebies (it’s not), so I applied a lighter layer than I usually do.
For the first couple of days, the Staebies worked fine with this minimal amount of lube, but then my left shift started ticking ever so slightly. Thankfully, adding a bit more BDZ lube to the wire with a syringe does remove the ticking, so I didn’t have to open up the whole keyboard again.
If you’ve always been frustrated tuning screw-in stabilisers (like I am), you will definitely appreciate how much easier it is to tune the Staebies. At the moment, only Keyboard Treehouse based in Australia has these stabilisers in stock for $22 (about RM90) a set. If you’re in the US, you’ll be happy to know that Cannon Keys will also be carrying them soon.