Well I got started using o1. The o1 is a great high carbon tool steel with forgiving heattreating properties. Since I do all my own heat treatment I've chosen to stick with o1 manly because of those qualities. It also makes a great hard edge holding blade. I've abused some blades in my r&d and it's amazing how well they hold up.
5160 is a spring steel. I use for my short swords and.large chopping blades. It offers more tuff was than o1 and when differential heat treated it Almost impossible to break.
Cmp154- is what I use for stainless knives. Everybody loves stainless except the knife maker it sucks to grind! This stainless is one of the easier to use lending it self to easier grindabity and heattreating.
It not that I won't use other steels. It's just these are easy to come by and I know what I get with them. Dylan fletcher and andy Roy steered me towards these steels with great confidence. It's what they use and after my own tests I know why.
Hope this helps. Let me know if you have any questions. Like what grinds I use or handle materials . Thanks
Most of my handles are made from layer synthetic materials. I like using g10, canvas and linen micartas, and colored liners. Some of the coolest micartaade Ive used are custom made by Shadetree.
I use different grinds for different knives. Fine slicing blades get high and tight convex or hollow grinds. My camp and choppers get a thicker convex to hold up against heavy use. A secondary convex edge is easy to keep razor sharp with a little compound on your belt for in the field stoping!