As there is a fair bit of discussion regarding the installation of a primary wasteboard on the Shapeoko, I created this thread. Here are some of the takeaways from the discussion.
Aluminum wasteboards offer a significant improvement in rigidity and precision to the Shapeoko and when using coolant, it will not be damaged like an MDF wasteboard.
Looking at the Shapeoko Wiki, I found an unofficial wasteboard design (SVG) for the XL but not for the other models. Has anyone confirmed the dimensions or successfully milled one? Are the other models available somewhere else?
Ohio Diesel offers a 1/2in predrilled aluminum wasteboard (fixture table) for all 3 models of the Shapeoko.
Carbide 3D also offers an aluminum wasteboard for the standard size Shapeoko 3.
Beaver CNC @Luke used to offer predrilled aluminum wasteboards for the XXL and maybe the XL in Europe, maybe Carbide will now start making them available through the store at some point.
Midwest Steel offers very reasonably priced ATP-5 aluminum plates in several thicknesses at a very reasonable price. It was mentioned that the 5/8in thick plates offers better flatness than 1/2in and the thinner ones.
An aluminum wasteboard that covers the whole area can be drilled on the Shapeoko by tiling the project. One would still have to tap every hole used for fixture.
I hope this captures relevant information on aluminum wasteboards.