I realized the other day that I needed a new inside strop for my gouges. As I was about to order a $12.95 one shaped like a slipstone, I stopped and said, “What’s the matter with you? You’re a woodworker – make one!” I promptly headed to the shop, shaped a piece of soft maple, and wrapped it in a leather scrap. Voila! A gouge strop! No purchase required, and it went to work as soon as the glue dried – no waiting on delivery.
It’s so easy nowadays, with the cornucopia of woodworking products on the market, to simply open a catalog or click on a website and have the jig or fixture of your dreams shipped straight to your door. With Amazon, it only takes a single click (DANGER, DANGER!). On the other hand, all these aids and appliances can rapidly run into a significant amount of money that could (for some people) be better spent on other tools.
So, where do you stand on the Build or Buy spectrum?