Raising the machine up for max Z travel

Hi folks,
I am still building my machine on weekends and I noticed that the Z axis has 144mm travel while the wasteboard which will sit above the bench is only going to be about 50mm from the bottom of the Z carriage. This means I am not able to use most of the Z travel which is stupid. I have checked out the numbers and the space and I could put 100mm spacers under the foot mounts of my X50 and at least be able to use most of the Z travel . . . . . so how come nobody mentioned this to me? Has anyone else done this? Any suggestions for a solid and even mounting block? At the moment I am looking at stacking up about 8 layers of glued plywood.
Comments and suggestions welcome !

This has come up several times before. Checkout Onefinity’s post on riser blocks. Additionally, you can check out this search query to help you find more discussions in the forum too.

Have a blast with your machine by the way! :slightly_smiling_face:

Checkout what @HardtailSr has done in this thread with vertical clamping. It was really creative and there are several others who have done cool things to take advantage of Z-travel; it’s a fun thread.

Thanks for your post, I am not going to use 3D printed mounts though, they just don’t look strong enough to me - Reckon I’ll continue with my previous plan - I think I prefer raising the whole machine rather than just the X axis. I will post my progress here: The Empty Header
if anyone is interested. Thanks again to everyone here, I really appreciate your help !

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The router/spindle can be mounted in multiple vertical positions so there’s already a bit of adjustability.

You can have a table with a giant cut-out in the middle giving you multiple feet of space under the carriage/spindle, but that clearance or any clearance achieved by risers, obviously doesn’t increase your travel, it just allows you to work on larger/thicker parts.

What materials are you planning on working on?

The issue with creating a large (tall) clearance beyond the travel length is the inability to then machine thinner stock without raising it up or possibly using a very long bit (which can lead to more deflection/breakage). It’s a balancing act, and one of the benefits of doing it on the X is that when/if you want to reverse it, you don’t have to re-square the machine and there are only two risers instead of 4 to deal with.

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