Grab this book, it's a great entry into the world of meats making.http://www.bookdepository.com/Charcuterie-Michael-Ruhlman-Brian-Polcyn-Yevgenity-Solovyev/9780393240054?ref=grid-view
I've just noticed they also have another book which I think I'll have to buy myself.http://www.bookdepository.com/Salumi-Michael-Ruhlman-Brian-Polcyn/9780393068597?ref=bd_recs_1
A lot people either don't like or can't eat foods containing nitrites and nitrates, but it's my belief that using them both really do make for the safest product at the end. They don't just give the foodstuffs a nice pink/red hue, they stop bacteria such as Clostridium botulinum, which is one you don't ever want to consume.
Which one you use (either sodium nitrite or sodium nitrate) depends on whether the end product will be cooked or not. They are surprisingly easy to come by online nowadays, usually being sold as Pink Curing Salt #1 or #2 or Prague Powder #1 or #2. Natural casings (my preference) are usually pretty easy to come by at butcher shops. Usually you can get a big box of cleaned ones for cheap.
Old refrigerators convert pretty easily into curing cabinets, there are guides online to show you how to modify it for temp, humidity and air flow.
As for equipment, you can't really go wrong with a KitchenAid with mincer and stuffer attachments. Expensive but overall versatility of the product can't be beat.
Start with the easy cooked products like sausages and bacon. That will let you get a feel for the sausage stuffing and how the curing salt works, with less risk of serious food poisoning. And with the sausages and salami, always use a bit more fat than you think you'd need, there is nothing worse than a pasty, dry sausage! There can be a bit of a trick to get the filling to stick together, but usually it's remedied easily by salting the meat before you mince and letting it sit for a bit (usually 10-45 mins depending) to let the myosin be extracted. The myosin is the key to binding sausage/salami contents together, especially with really emulsified sausages.
Anyway, grab that first book, it'll tell you a lot of what you need to know, and contains a good amount of recipes to get you going. Have fun!