Waste board flex/ other waste board options

I have read some posts of guys removing the feet off their machines and sitting it in a rubber mat. I’m getting some flex in the center of my waste board. I tried shimming the center but it made the machine teeter totter once I got the sag out. I was thinking maybe get rid of the mdf that comes with the shapeoko and get a metal surface to go inside the frame and bolt a piece of mdf to that. Any ideas or suggestions you guys have tried?

Hi @Bmart,

You’ll find a variety of ways to do this on the forum, I’ll just share mine:


This was in the context of upgrading to an aluminium bed as you can see, but ignore that, the same principle applies if you keep an MDF bed:

  • I removed the leveling feet (and I have been happy I did, ever since)
  • I used the original MDF wasteboard as the lower layer: it very conveniently has holes just in the right places to accomodate the welded nuts that protrude underneath the steel plates
  • I placed a layer of thin material (in my case roof felt, but anything the same thickness of the steel plates will do, and a vibration-absorbing material is better), cut such that it goes on top of the MDF layer, but is narrower to fit between the plates
  • the actual wasteboard (aluminium plate in that example)

With this setup, I can push onto the bed like a madman when I’m installing stock, and it won’t deflect.


Is that a solid steel plate on top?

It’s aluminium. It’s a pricy upgrade (especially for larger Shapeokos, thankfully mine is the smallest model), so I would not bother doing it before you know you need it (which often turns out to be, when/if you get into machining metal)


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