Music From Outer Space: Noise Toasterhttp://www.musicfromouterspace.com/index.php?MAINTAB=SYNTHDIY&VPW=1783&VPH=669
2014? This could probably be considered my first 'real' synth, mainly because it has pretty much all the functions of a synth you'd buy from a shop.
Under that perspex panel is an absolute maze of wires, so I was pretty surprised when it actually worked the first time. That probably says more about the detailed guides rather than my handy-work. On the MFOS website there is a ton of synth DIY content, including instructions on how to build the noise toaster (plus info on how & why it works), also recommended is Ray Wilson's book which although much of the content is the same as the websites, it's pretty indispensable reading (and the only current synth DIY book around);
Also at this point I'd purchased a few wood working machines, namely a Proxxon table saw and sander;
The table saw cuts up to 8mm MDF (maybe 1cm?), but sadly the guide rails only let you measure a width up to 7cm, unless you go rogue and cut freehand without the guide. That's something I might hack one day, but as it is it means the max width of wood is often only 7cm, which is generally enough for my synths, but it'd have been nice to have the option to go larger. It's tiny though, so can be kept ok in my small apartment. I'm on my second blade after 2+ years of use (and that's only because I cut some metal sheets which blunted it pretty rapidly).
This machine suffers the same faults as the table saw; mainly in that it's too small. A good workman always blames his tools. But still, it fits in a cupboard nicely when not in use, so until I get a full size work shop it's something I have to live with. Both machines are at least of pretty high quality, so if space is an issue for you I guess I'd recommend them. I use it to sand the edges down on my wood when they don't match up, plus to give a uniform surface finish, and sometimes to round off corners.