Similar to Weaponsmithing and Armoring, you’ll have to do a little bit of everything to get the resources necessary to start Engineering. This means you’ll need to keep up on Logging, Mining, Harvesting, and Tracking and Skinning. Most, if not all, Engineering recipes will require wood and hide refined into timber and leather, as well as some amount of cloth and/or metal. Wood and hide you’ll find anywhere, but early on, you can seek out iron ore in highland areas and hemp in forest or grassland areas. You can see where these zones are in the Resource Locations section of your map.
Once you’ve gotten your full set of iron tools and have amassed a nice sum of resources, it’s time to start crafting. But where to start? Well, since resources like ore and fiber are rarer than wood and hides, you’ll want to prioritize recipes that use as little iron and cloth as possible. It’s much easier for you to get more timber and leather if you need more.
These three recipes are relatively low cost when it comes to scarcer resources like iron and linen, but they reward the largest number of Engineering skill points compared to any other starting recipe. As you progress through the game and level up these skills, you can create higher tiers of these recipes that create steel or Starmetal versions of these items. These versions will reward you with much more Engineering skill.