Turning the R3 into my holiday keytar.

Okay, it’s dodgy, but aren’t keytars just?

The R3 is a strange beast – I think it’s severely underrated, I think it is one hell of a synth, I think it is great for going on holiday, and I think it is butt-ugly.

R3 with guitar strap

You may notice that this R3 now features a very sensible addition: a shoulder strap. You may also notice that the keyboard has turned really, really yellow – especially when you compare it with this 7-year old photo of my first attempt of modding it. I never came round to upgrading it with an aftertouch sensor – although that is still on my list, but this is so simple that I could do it in between last chores for work and packing.

Bought two guitar strap buttons at a music store. Screwed them into the sides, with a metal disc glued to the inside to bear the load.

Sourced this rechargeable battery pack. This type of battery usually powers drills, and heatable vests, and it supplies 12V with 3Ah, which should guarantee for hours and hours of playing.

I have even prepared a grip, which I am going to stick to the right side – yes, I am going to play it like a left-hand bass guitar. And yes, the grip is from a Carrera race game, which is quite suitable for something as dodgy as a homebrew bass keytar.

External boombox amplifier not included.

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7 thoughts on “Turning the R3 into my holiday keytar.

  1. Hi good job! Some time ago I’m thinking on mod my R3 too! Do you have more details of how you put the guitar strap locks and where to find that power pack? Salutes from Venezuela!

  2. Cheers! For the power pack, have a look at this – I couldn’t find the product on the Venezuelan Bosch pages, but I guess it will help you anyway.

    Placing the locks was a bit try and error. I picked and drilled a spot exactly 35mm from the front edge of the R3, just halfway between top and bottom (that would be about 20mm from the top). I glued a metal disc to the inside of the R3 housing for extra stability. Really straightforward.

    Two more things to do for me. First, the grip – the double challenge is to achieve enough stability for it, as well as having it connected in a sensible way to the wheels. And the pressure sensor for retrofitting the R3 with aftertouch is also already in the house.

  3. I am building this! I have all of the parts, including the Bosch battery and adapter, but how did you build the power cable? I’d like to find a way to not destroy my existing adapter. If you already sourced part numbers for the connectors at both ends of the cable, that would be super helpful!

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