I do have some experience removing rust off surfaces. I have fixed up old tools before and have used a product for removing scum and rust off boat bottoms, very strong stuff and it works fast. Here are some pix of the table off my bandsaw before and after:
The problem is that the protective plating is now gone in that spot where it was rusted and if/when the top gets wet (its next to the sink), it probably will start rusting again. The power tool tables generally have a layer of wax and oil on them and never see any moisture (at least not intentionally) on them.
So all in all, I'm still on the fence with this. I'll wait and see if I can scare up a replacement unit with better cosmetics and if that doesn't pan out, I'll take a trip to the powder coater in Virginia Beach next week to talk directly and see if I want to go that route. Even going with the powder coat, I will probably be 80 to 100 in cost for the coating and other paints. Much more than that and I may decide otherwise.