Do you need a wasteboard or can you just use the board you mount it on

do you need a wasteboard or can you just use the board you mount it on

I think most people are using a wasteboard on top of your table simply because it raises the height that your router/spindle needs to reach as you would need to lower the mounting of the router/spindle to the bottom z slider holes which may cause more flex in the z-axis.

From what I have seen, most people seem to secure the spindle mount in middle holes.

No it’s mainly a sacrificial surface and you can build in clamping options. Even if you plan to only use tape to secure your work eventually the top will become uneven from cut through operations and the tape will hold as well.

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As the others have said, no, it’s not required.

It might be good to look at what a sacrificial system can do for you. I bought RedDog’s files to save me design time as well as recognize the effort he put into the design. What his system does is provide a base layer, that is not sacrificial, and provides for clamping—threaded inserts, dog holes, and space for T tracks. He also has a modular sacrificial layer with holes thru to the inserts, tracks, and dogs below. The idea being threaded inserts are a time consuming pain to do. Do it once and only rarely if ever replace it (they are in slats so I can replace them one at a time if I do chew them up).

The threaded inserts and dog holes are all I really use. If I had to do it over, I’d consider doing the base layer directly into my plywood torsion box top instead of having an mdf layer. Because I use pwncnc’s rear-facing z-independent dust boot, my z height gets constrained. I haven’t moved to the top holes for my z mount but will likely need to be able to clear 2x 3/4” mdf + material under the dust boot.

I bring this up because a spoilboard system can do more than protect your table top. And also to acknowledge I don’t know what I need until I use it for a bit—while I could have predicted the z height issue and can fix by adding another front facing dust boot, I did not understand the interaction between my spoilboard decisions and my dust boot decisions fully until I used them for awhile.

Experiment. Be willing to get it completely wrong from time to time as well as understanding there is no perfect solution, much less a universal one for everyone, but there is probably something that will work and get you where you want to go.


It really depends on your intended use. Even though my machine is mounted on an aluminum frame with a steel work surface, I still ultimately use a sacrificial wasteboard under what I’m making. If I’m making coasters, then I have a fixture for those and no waste surface is necessary. The fixture simply screws down to the steel table.