fehujber wrote:To answer question # 1 Contractors saw, the old sears standard BEFORE they discovered china. I know .008 sounds like a little but if you can get it dead on you can rip really nice joints and even save a lot of jointing. And lets not talk about contractors accuracy ....when I earned my living jerkin levers on hoes and such my saw of choice was a Stihl 070 even for trim.
.008 sounds like the grand canyon to me. Assuming you have 6" of length in the blade at your measurement that would make an 8' panel out of true by more than 1/8" That is not in any way acceptable for quality work. Depending on alignment, that is more than the thickness of the sheeting on a 16' boat side. Man, anyone that thinks that is acceptable must be the microbaloons sales dude's best friend! Fine for sheeting a roof, I guess, but not any form of quality work (.0013" will be 1/64" for 8' that is acceptable, Again, assuming 6" of blade exposed along the table)
Unfortunately, about the only adjustment you will find is going to be the trunnion mount slots. Square them to the blade, Your home made gauge should work fine. Your case flex is typical of contractors (you should see the new chinese stuff, more flex than at golds gym!)
I would ream the holes, care not to crack casting, recommend a small grinder rather than a drill bit. Slow, and test-fitting all the way. Get the trunnion to true first. Then bolster the flexie side with some .125" stock.
Contractors have a habit of flexing under load, after you have it setup make a few test cuts in a material to similar density as your project, checking squareness with a good qual square.
Just a side note, most contractors will do better than you expect with a little work, but they are susceptible to vibration (from that gigantic Santa clause belt) Use one of the link-belts.
Yes, set blade to slot, then the fence to the gauge.
With work any saw should be able to hit .005" over 2' Any more than that, and you need to keep working. Most woodworking begins at the table saw, if it's not as close to perfect as possible nothing ever fits right, damn frustrating to work with cock-eyed parts.