You're new to split keyboards. Maybe you're assembling one yourself, maybe you've purchased a preassembled one. Either way, while building and using your keyboard, you'll want to know about a few common pitfalls that can save you and your keyboard from headaches and worse.
While building your keyboard
Straighten the switch pins
Bent legs on switches - no reason to panic! Our manufacturers ship switches to us in bulk and we then ship them to you in bags. They'll sit closely together during transit, and sometimes a few of the legs will be bent once you open your much-anticipated box.
While fragile, it's safe to bend the legs back in place using tweezers or with careful use of pliers. Bending them once is fine, just don't bend them back and forth as they might snap off with repeated bending.
Especially when using hot swap sockets, make sure you look at the pins of each individual switch when putting them into the socket: a bent leg might damage the socket and the switch.
Socket your controller
Socketing isn't required, but we really do recommend it. The controllers are the hardest parts to desolder, and especially for novice builders they can be quite troublesome: you're at high risk of damaging the controller and the main board.
Socketing your controller is more expensive up-front, but it'll enable you to reuse the controller later on another board, and enables you to easily remove it in case it fails in the future.
Reusing switches when using hot-swap sockets
Reusing switches is a good thing - they last for millions of keypresses, so chances are that most switches will last you a lifetime. However, when desoldering switches, there'll always be some solder residue leftover on the legs of a switch. This residue causes the metal contacts to widen and reduces the overall surface area of the connection. In turn, this causes a less reliable connection, and might render the sockets unusable with other switches, even other reused switches.
If you're planning to reuse switches, get a variant of the kit that uses hand-soldered switches instead of hot-swap sockets. If your kit only supports hot-swap, then I'd strongly consider using new switches.
Remove the foil from acrylic parts
Both sides of all acrylic parts are covered with foil to protect it from scratches during transit. This foil might be hard to see. You can use your fingernails or tweezers to pluck at the side of the foil to make a start, and then pull on it to remove the rest of the foil. This way your frosted bottom plate is actually neutral in colour instead of blue!
While using your keyboard
Only unplug the TRRS cable after unplugging the USB cable
A TRRS cable looks familiar: it's just like the end of one of those corded headphones you've got laying around. In split keyboards, you need to be mindful about them. A TRRS cable has a few rings that, when unplugging, you drag over the contacts in the TRRS jack. This causes the signals and power to go to places they're not intended to go.
When unplugging cables, make sure to unplug the TRRS cable last, after the keyboard doesn't have power anymore.
Don't use TRRS cables with wireless controllers
Wireless keyboards can use the same kits as wired ones, but that doesn't mean you should install all the parts. While it's possible to power the peripheral half of a wireless keyboard over TRRS, having two batteries installed and then connecting the power across them can lead to unpredictable results.
When batteries are connected together, they might start rebalancing, causing a high current, potentially overheating the batteries.
If you don't have batteries yet, it's wise to not connect the halves physically, and use two USB cables instead.