The most time-consuming step in the whole process, is filing. There isn’t much to describe about this step other than, be patient and go with whatever feels best. The shape of the handle isn’t exactly like my template, but it felt good in my hand as I worked on it, so I followed what the wood was revealing.
At this point I have also enlarged the pilot-holes into their full-sized mounting holes. I drilled the holes out gradually, going up one or two drill-sizes at a time, until the holes were just bigger than 1/4 inch in diameter. I then used a counter-sink bit, quite deeply into the wood. This results in a hole with a cross-section similar to an hour-glass; widest at either end, narrowest in the middle. The reason for this will become appearant when the knife is assembled.