The thing I have been playing with was to make some coasters. The construction of the block was OK but you then have to cut slices off. My mitre saw just wasn’t big enough to do it. That meant having to do two deep passes with the circular saw by hand and getting those accurate wasn’t possible. Then had to sand them to remove the saw marks. When trimming the mitre saw was also shown to be lacking (it was fine about 20 tears ago). So these are far from perfect but have been a good learning experience. I still have a block that I should be able to get about 8 to 10 more coasters off once I get a suitable saw. Did try manually sawing but I think I would still be doing the first one in about 5 weeks!
If I was going to do something like a desk then there would need to be a few equipment purchases.