Joining 2" (8/4) Hard Maple w/ No Jointer?
This will be my first REAL wood project (I've built a lot of stuff, but nothing with hardwood, and nothing that didn't come from Home Depot!) Admittedly, I'm pretty nervous as I want this piece to come out nice, and this wood AIN'T CHEAP! :) I am making a sofa table from 2" (8/4) Hard Maple. It'll be 8.5-9' long x 16" wide. I'll be joining 2 planks at about 8-9" wide each, and they DO have some slight bow/cupping. I need to cut straight/glue line ready edges, as well as cross cut to final length once it's glued up.
I DO have a DeWalt Contractor's table saw w/ a small outfeed table- but even if I create a straight line jig, I seriously doubt I could feed it through properly and consistently enough to get a glue ready edge. I also borrowed a Ryobi Planer, as well as biscuit cutter. I have a small hand planer, but I've never used it, no clue how to tune it, and don't think it's big enough for the length of stock I'm working with...
I plan on planing each plank the best I can until they both seem relatively flat on each side. I'm considering clamping a manufactured edge as a guide- and using either a flush trim router bit, or, a 10" circular saw for the glue line edges. I'd still need to cross cut to final length once glued up.
1) Which is better to use- router or circular saw?
2) Is there a GOOD manufactured edge I could buy at the big box stores that's 9-10' long? I was considering a metal stud (makes me a tad nervous if I'm using a flush trim bit and the bit slightly knicking the metal stud)?
3) Probably most important- which blade/bit should I use? I'm on a budget so a nice $100+ blade is out of the equation. I don't mind a $30-ish blade if it's possible :) Keep in mind I'll also need to cross cut to final length once glued up.
4) Once cut, should I lightly sand the glue line edges before gluing up, or leave them be?
5) Any other advice for tackling this project?
I sincerely appreciate all input on this project! Thank you!