Bill, thanks for the advice. So what you're saying is that I should purchase the wood, let it dry out as its probably been sitting outside. THen glue it on the side, I'm assuming I should clamp it to. Then once I've done that I should still let it "settle" before I finally stain it. Do you think I will still need to add cross braces? (Belts and Suspenders theory). Love the idea of BORG wood. YOu can tellthat I'm a complete neophite on this, I had to google it and eventually go it. Big Orange indeed :)
If you have a local dedicated lumber yard, this would be a better source of whatever wood you want to purchase.
The wood needs to reach a moisture equilibrium with your house. At this time of year the moisture in our houses is the lowest of the year, so I would expect the wood to have more moisture than the house.
When wood changes moisture, either loosing or gaining, there is movement in the wood. This can result in warping/twisting etc. Hence it is good to allow the wood time to get close to the moisture content of the house. Easier to address any dimension issues at the beginning.
It is common to glue the boards together. The board edges should be straight and ideally make full contact along the length. Clamping should be to hold them close while the glue sets. It is possible to clamp a gap closed, but this adds stress to the joint which may give way over time.
You want to clamp on top and another on the bottom to prevent bowing across the table top. I would clamp at each end and in the middle.
If the boards are long, I like to use a dowel to align the boards for length. Personal preference. Many people would say too much extra work.
You can stain after gluing.
A tight fitting glue joint is actually stronger than the wood.
You can attach a side to side brace if you want. It may help in attaching the legs.