using hand tools to build a woodworking work bench instead of power tools

I need to build a workbench (my first one) and have been looking at some plans on the net and have found these that are for what looks to be a nice one:
http://www.popularmechanics.com/home_journal/workshop/4219723.html?series
My question is: the plans say "If you don't have a power miter saw or radial-arm saw, guide your circular saw..."
Well, what if you don't have even a circular saw? I can't afford one at this very moment, nonetheless need to get building now, because I have other projects that need to get done which themselves require a proper bench with vises. So I need to know whether its feasible for me, someone just starting out (but with mechanical aptitude), to attempt to use a regular hand saw for doing the cross cuts on the construction-grade lumber (or maybe clear hardwood, haven't decided yet). Or whether I should not even try. I'm guessing getting straight cuts would be the major sticking point?? Or is there something else to watch out for? Also, I only have a traditional hand drill, no electric (yet). I figure this shouldn't be a problem, the holes aren't huge and the plans call for ordinary lag screws.
Any help with this would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you,
Chris
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rank beginner wrote:

If you've only got a hand-drill, that solid-wood top with the zillion holes for the allthread is going to be a pain. Also, that style of bench needs to be HEAVY or else it can move around.
For a first workbench, something like this might be more appropriate. I'm actually just finishing up a version of this in my new garage.
http://www.rd.com/familyhandyman/articles/200212/fixit/page2.html

Use a handsaw, as you suggested. Mark the line, cut to the line. It'll likely take some practice to get good at it.
Alternately, borrow a power saw from a friend.
Chris
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Thanks for that link, Chris. I'm reading through it now. You might be right. I may be better off at this stage using a straightforward sheet of plywood for the top. Using the 2 x4s are also a lot easier to work with at this point. I'm going to give it some serious consideration.
Thanks again.
C

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The cost of a circular saw and a power drill will only be a fraction of the cost of material going into even a small bench then you will have them for future projects. A quality handsaw is a joy to use but a manual drill gets old in a hurry.
Harry K
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On Thu, 09 Aug 2007 12:38:25 -0700, rank beginner

Ask this over in rec.woodworking. Lots of friendly folks there roughly divided into two camps. Neanders (Neanderthals) who prefer hand tools, and Normites (after Norm Abrams, host of New Yankee Workshop) who use power tools for everything. You'll get lots of good info on benches and building with hand tools. Also, do a google groups search for bench or workbench (limit to rec.woodworking) because the subject has been discussed in a million threads already.
Building a good bench with hand tools is a challenge, but you will be proud of the result for many, many years. Go for it!
Paul F.
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Thanks, Paul. Will try just that.
I think I'm going to go for it.
wrote:

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Sure, why not? They build some rather nice furniture before the invention of electricity and power tools. If, however, you have to buy a handsaw, you can buy a circular saw for less than a good handsaw.
Take your time and mark a line for the cuts.
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On Thu, 09 Aug 2007 12:38:25 -0700, rank beginner

A circular saw will make this project easy. They are not too expensive (about the same price as a nice vise) and you will need to use it to squarely trim off the benchtop ends. But, yes you can still build this bench without a circular saw and it will take longer to build. You may want to substitute ply & hardboard for the top unless you have a belt sander. Sometimes a nice smooth and flat work surface is needed. Using hand tools is an important skill to develop, and building this bench will give you that.
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