I bought one of the McMaster-Carr tops, I'm happy with it as a work bench. Made by John Boos and comes in a variety of sizes. I considered the Ikea top as well, but shipping from MMC was much more reasonable.
Here's a really shitty picture of it;
The base came out of the engineering lab of the local University.
Mine is currently a work in progress, so 'sort of', I have the top and legs and am forming ideas for for the vises. My interests are progressing from machine operations to further include hand work and the workbench is the heart of the operation for hand work.
A couple years ago I saw a mitered edge dovetail done by George Nakashima on one of his cabinets and was inspired by it. Here's a mitered edge dovetail.
Recently witnessed a Japanese craftsman building a dresser and making use of full blind dovetails and found some inspiration in his work. A full blind dovetail is something that is a lot of work, only looks acceptable when done to near perfect precision, and will likely never be appreciated by an end user or consumer since it is unseen. However its an incredibly strong joint which does not rely upon glue bond to remain intact, so he was using it for it's purpose rather than to display skill.
speaking of construction, what is the ideal construction for wooden legs on a dining table, end table, coffee table, etc?
reason I ask is I just bought a nice set of end tables at a good discount and noticed that there is a tiny bit of movement in the legs, but the existing screws are already firmly set in place. I'll take a couple of photos when I get home to display what I mean.
edit: I found a picture online that looks almost identical to what I see on the end tables I just bought -
It depends very much on the design. Obviously most table leg attachments have to consider the forces that will be put on them, the intended use and the design along with the materials used for the tabletop. A large solid wood tabletop had a lot of possibility for wood movement, where a tabletop made of MDF or Plywood with a veneer will move an inconsequential amount.
As a general guide I like table skirts to be reinforced from the inside with a block of wood running the full length of the skirt. Removable legs should have guide pin and be attached with bolts (not screws).
Obviously the various styles of table bases and legs all have their own circumstantial needs that are required in order to survive for a long period of time.