Well I consider this my first knife anyway. Many years ago I made a few knife shaped objects out of old files, but they never saw heat, and really weren't much more than decorative (albeit ugly) pieced. These are the steps I took to get to this point: Draw out my shape on some paper, transfer it to card stock so that if I liked what I made, I could make it again. To be honest, I'm finding the shaping on paper tougher than with the metal itself. There were some things on the paper layout I didn't love (front finger grip, and the nub separating it from the rest of the fingers for instance), that were hard to refine on paper. Much happier with the metal blank results in those areas. I did some web searching, grabbed things I liked about a bunch of different knives I saw, then drew my own. Trace onto a piece of 1.5"x 1/8" 1084 steel. I chose 1084 because most everything I know about it says its very beginner friendly to heat treat, while still being a good choice for knives. It will rust however if left exposed. Hacksaw and file baby! All in all this took probably 2 hours or so at most... which I split up over multiple visits to the garage. And where we sit now. Much happier with the front finger grip and nub on this. Amazing what having a half round file does. The blade is wide for sure, in retrospect it would probably be prettier with a thinner profile, but this knife is all about utility so I wanted it to be a bit beefy for what it was. The handle is quite comfortable even without scales. Have done this all by hand except for the 2 holes being drilled. I figure though it's going to take me a lot longer, I will learn nuances that I would quickly miss if I was using a belt sander, grinder, etc. Next up, a bit of sanding on the spine just to assure myself I'm done there with the file, and onto profiling the edge... I built myself this as well... Saw a video about this, it seemed like a good idea to try given the initial investment was 2 hose clamps, some scrap wood, hardware and some tape. Knowing me, I will spend as much time making the tools to do the job easily, as I will doing the job... so this might get another iteration depending what I learn through it's use. Ignore the lower left profile on the table, that's perhaps a future knife. Constructive feedback welcome and appreciated. More to come!