First off, I’m brand spankin’ new to the site, and fairly new to woodworking. Hello, kind folks. Please be gentle, and thank you in advance for any words of wisdom you might offer.
The Wood: The wood (got a hell of a deal) is a 10’ maple (hard or soft uknown) slab, 10/4 thick, that was cut with a bandsaw, has been kiln dried and sealed on both ends (little to no cracks, voids, or knots), and has been stored in near-identical humidty to its final destination. It appears to have little to no cupping or twist. It is going to be a table top as per my wife’s request for our first Christmas as a married couple.
Relevant Tools That I Own (the problem starts to become clear):
Dewalt 2 1/4 HP plunge/fixed base (combo kit) variable speed router w/ 1/2” and 1/4” collets
Makita 7 1/4” circular saw
Make a router jig/sled to flatten (plane) one side, flip the slab, and “plane” the other side to desired thickness with the same jig/sled. There are numerous videos and write-ups on these jigs and their use, and I really would like to tackle this myself at home in order to gain some experience (obviously I’d want to start with test pieces to make sure my process is fine tuned before going to the final piece).
My workbench is 4’ x 8’ and consists of 2×4’s, 2×6’s, and a MDF top. It is, therefore, likely not truly flat (I’m not picking the slab off of it to verify w/ winding sticks, so let’s just assume it’s not flat). I need a flat surface to reference off of for my jig to truly flatten the slab. I personally don’t think I am equipped enough tool-wise to make a flat work bench, but a torsion box is what I have my eye on since I don’t have a jointer or planer.
1: Can/should I rig up a flat surface with things like angle iron, plywood/mdf, and saw horses?
2: Can I realistically build a flat torsion box with a circular saw and a straight edge + clamps, and should I?
3: Should I break down and finally buy that $600 Delta contractor’s saw at Lowe’s that I’ve had my eye on for months while scouring Craigslist in hopes of a good deal on a good saw so that I can build a square, flat workbench finally?
4: Does this surface, whatever it ends up being, need to be as long as the slab?
Flatness is the problem at hand here, so once that’s solved we can get into the rest of the issues of building a table like this such as wood movement, support, and finish options.
Thank you for your time,