Wasteboard DIY: T-Track or T-Nuts?

I need to make a Wasteboard, and I’m still a newbie. Which do you prefer threaded wholes with t-nuts or one with a t-track system?

I’m currently using T-track, but on my SO1 when I expanded it, I was doing threaded inserts and installing them as/where needed — that way I was confident that each insert was used at least once.

ATP-5 aluminum plate with tapped holes on 1" centers
It will be the last machine bed you will have to deal with.


here is what I use https://us.misumi-ec.com/vona2/detail/110302261820/

added two extra 20X20 braces on the lower frame so I could use corner brackets to fasten the bed to the rails. I also ordered the T slot in 1000X250 so I needed four of them (hence the need for three supports on the bottom). you can always fasten MDF to the bed if you need to cut into it (so you don’t damage the aluminum bed).

the bonus of using a solid piece of aluminum or these T-track extrusions is how much more rigid the machine becomes.

P.S. also less warping due to changes in temperature and humidity.

@JanVanderlinden Did you make that one?

Yes I did.
I chose the ATP 5 over MIC 6 simply due to price.
If you research them, they both have the same specifications.

Wow! That’s awesome! How did you make that! :star_struck:

If you’re interested, i would gladly share the print with you.

1 Like

I know this is a “newbie” question here, but what happens when the router bit goes deeper than the wood you are carving/cutting. I know it obviously scars the MDF when it is used, but metal against metal…? Does it do any damage to your bits?

I ALWAYS put a sacrificial piece of wood under my work.
This is a picture of a job I have on the machine right now.
I hope you can see the sacrificial piece.

1 Like

Yes, I see it! Very good idea! Now, for my next question, what did you use to drill all the holes?

It was machined on a CNC machine.
Obviously not an X carve.

Do you have access to another machine, Jan?

I did when I was working, but I’m retired now.
Actually, I don’t know why an Xcarve wouldn’t be able to do the drilling.
You would still have to do the tapping by hand, which is not a big deal.
(I would do the tapping with a cordless drill)

1 Like

A track with T nuts offers much more flexibility. If you go with just T nuts, you’re limited to where they are. With. Track, you can move your hold downs pretty much anywhere.

My first cnc had t nuts only. On some sixpzes of boards it was hard to get the hold downs to work easily.

My second one has tracks. Love it…

1 Like

I see your upgrade, and i raise you this one

Thanks for the inspiration…

1 Like

Much better than the MDF isn’t it?
And its dead flat.

To be honest, never tried with the original MDF wasteboard. I live in Norway, and the shipping was simply too much.
So I have been using an old chipboard in anticipation of something better.

This solution went strait to the heart.

I have aslo seen on T-track solutions, but when orderd the X-carve i somhow manage to add 2 sets of those clamp sets, so I hade to find a use for them.

No i only have to make a good dust shoe and everything around that.
And a computer setup.

Check out the “suckit” dust boot.
I have one and it works great.
They are also a great company to deal with.

I just finished this waste board upgrade a couple of weeks ago and have been designing and 3D printing clamp solutions. Before this upgrade I was using double sided tape to hold down material and for a location reference I had an angle “bump stop” at the front left corner. The bump stop had worked well so I designed the little square pieces in the picture that would sit on the track and across the front and act as the bump stop. What I quickly realized is that if you’ve got something semi-permanently located in the track then you’ve blocked adding clamps from the front and end up sliding them in from the back all the time - not convenient. This might not be my ultimate bed setup, but it’s an experiment and was fairly cheap. That track spacing (the slats are 130mm wide) is the most I’d recommend, otherwise clamps might need to be bigger to reach where you need them. I can now see a threaded hole grid might be more flexible.