Wasteboard and Vwheel alignment not quite right

Hey guys, new to the forum here and I’ve got a few questions maybe you more experienced folks can help me sort out. I apologize if these questions have been answered, if they have please just point me in the right direction. I have a 1000mm x-carve with a wasteboard from Inventables, and Dewalt 611 Router.

First let me give you guys my symptoms and what I did to trouble shoot.

I have performed a dozen or so carves mainly larger signs about 20x24 inches. While carving i have broken 4 bits. Upon further inspection, I noticed that the right hand side of my carve was deeper than the left hand side. So I pulled out a 2ft level (i’d like to note my table is perfectly level) and checked the X axis, all was well there. I checked the Y axis, all was well there. Next i pulled out my 16" framing square and measured the x rail from multiple points on the wasteboard, there was a minor discrepancy. I ran the framing square along the waste board to check for inconsistencies, it was too hard to tell because everything looked all right from a glance. I then grabbed my 6ft framing level and plopped it on the wasteboard, and wow is there a problem. To be further certain my level wasn’t lying to me, I zeroed my bit to the bottom left hand side of the wasteboad on a piece of 3/4" aluminum. I ran the spindle / aluminum all over the board to find that there is nearly 1/8" difference in some spots!

I checked all my pulleys and v-wheels to also rule out there being further problems. I noticed that on my x-carriage and y rails i can’t seem to get all 4 wheels to be in sync. Some barely touched the rail while others are snug.

So that’s where I’m at, here are my questions…

  1. Is it common for the wasteboard to have inconsistencies of 1/8" or greater?
  2. Is it going to be necessary to skim the wasteboard?
  3. Would shimming my project help correct this?
  4. Is it necessary that all 4 wheels on the rails be touching?

I thank you in advance for your help!

1 - No Xcarve is 100% parallell to Z at first (No other machine either before its been aligned/machined/matched up) For height critical carving you need to skim cut your board surface, this will ensure board surface is parallell to Z height.
2 - Yes, after you have aligned the board as best as possible.
3 - Yes, plus tramming the router
4 - That would be ideal.
4 -

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Thank you very much for answering my questions. I just wanted to be sure before I made any further adjustments.

I just ordered a nice surfacing bit that should have that wasteboard shaved in no time. As for the vwheels, I’ll have to spend more time tinkering with them to see if I can get better alignment.

Thank you again, I look forward to getting this machine fine tuned! I’ve seen a lot of work people have done on this forum and it’s been a true inspiration.

I had an issue with mine and everything is level one day i noticed the machine had a gap under one corner. all the same symptoms you just described

Hey Jeff, have you done anything to correct the issue? I’m waiting on a new bit to flatten out the board. Just today i watched a couple videos and read a few other threads posted on the forum about very similar issues. This appears to be a pretty common problem with a few solutions, however most folks recommend shaving the wasteboard.

The only reservation i have about shaving the board is I plan on using material larger than the carve envelope. This may cause a little more of a hurdle in regards to leveling larger items.

It’ll eat into your workable Z depth a little bit, but you could put a piece of thin plywood on top of the wasteboard, then surface that. That way your large work pieces will overhang the plywood, and you won’t have a “pocket” in the Inventables wasteboard.

Also, admittedly plywood may not be the best choice… But some other thin, easily milled material - you get the idea (hopefully).

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That’s an excellent idea. I’ve kinda been doing something similar to that already. I have a 3/4" piece of plywood that has inconsistencies in thickness and it has served as a makeshift leveling device.

I like the idea of surfacing a piece of wood instead of the actual wasteboard. I agree with you on the plywood, im not certain how well that can be surfaced. I will look into a suitable material and I’ll be sure to update my progress.

Thank you all again for your responses, it’s truly appreciated.

If available locally I can recommend particle boards, preferably the ones used for sub-flooring in wet rooms. They carve and hold their dimension well.


believe it or not in used a couple of shims between my table below the extrusions and the extrusions, it was rocking so i just made it so it wouldn’t. it solved the issue

Hey guys just a little update here. So i was able to find some thin MDF to shave down, however I haven’t had the need to try this yet.

Instead I’ve been shimming my projects to offset the differences. I just place a couple door shims under the wood I’m using on the side that has the low spot. To ensure that the project is level, I use a 1" piece of pine and lower the bit on top of that, then jog the spindle all over to see if the bit touches. I have found this to work pretty well, however it does add a little time to each project.

Ultimately, shaving the entire waste board will be the route I take. For this I bought a 1" Spoil board surfacing bit on Amazon for under $20.