Quick Look: Round Flexure Switch

July 22, 2021

The MMC60 Round Flexure Switch (opens in a new window) is an easy-to-use switch, that’s also easy to build.

This switch is ideal for people who have difficulty with fine motor control. The flexure in the design allows you to press, hit, or smash on the switch with a high degree of force. The flexure design also allows the top of the switch to be pressed from all angles if targeting is a challenge.

This switch can be connected to any standard AT interface, and can also be used with the Xbox Adaptive Controller (opens in a new window). The switch can be used on a flat surface or mounted using the 1/4″-20 UNC connection on the bottom.

Customizing the Round Flexure Switch

A gold honeycomb textured and green maze textured switch tops. In the background is a yellow round flexure switch

One of the great things about the Round Flexure Switch is the level of customization the design allows.

The Round Flexure Switch allows switch buttons to be swapped so users can customize their setup. There are button designs that are plain and flat, textured, and ones that include symbols and text.

This is a great way for users to differentiate between switch functions if there are multiple switches in close proximity, or for applications like adapting gaming. Or just to have a switch that fits your style.

We have a tutorial (opens in a new window) that will guide you in designing custom Round Flexure Switch tops using three popular programs.

Dan Belhassen, president of Neovation, smiles and holds a soldering iron, as he holds open a box of parts to build a Round Flexure Switch

Dan Belhassen, president of Neovation (opens in a new window), getting started on a Round Flexure Switch. Neovites built 13 switches in their first build event earlier this year.

Continued Progress

We originally added the Round Flexure Switch to our Assistive Device Library (opens in a new window) in 2019, with elements of the design, including the use of a flexure, inspired by the Volksswitch (opens in a new window) and the DIYAT Switch V5 (opens in a new window).

But just because it goes in our library, it doesn’t mean that the design’s final. We’re constantly improving our designs, and encouraging makers to create their own modifications and improvements.

A good example of this for the Round Flexure Switch, is the pins used to secure the internal switch components.

For the longest time, we suggested using 2mm dowels from the dollar store, but these weren’t always easy to source, so makers sometimes used bamboo skewers, toothpicks, and even coffee stir sticks to do the trick.

In April this year, maker Marc Hache came up with a design for single 3D printable pins that worked quite well.

a set of 3D printed pins sitting next to the internal switch components of a Round Flexure Switch

After a bit of testing and tinkering, we modified the single pins into two pins connected by a strip, that could be 3D printed easily, and added it to the design files.

We’re always looking to improve our designs, and we always appreciate the community input.

This post originally appeared on the Makers Making Change (opens in a new window) website.