I have built all my rods with Sage Blanks
Reason #1 I like the action of these rods and have allways been treated well by the factory even before the unlimited waranty came into being.
#2 Price You will allways find good blanks on sale even in the year of introduction.
#3 You can incorporate into your rod features that are unaviable in the off the shelf factory version such as over sized guides or a grip that suits you not the masses.
Finally the Pride thing that you are not just using an off the shelf item that some one else produced in total but an instrument that you finished and refined yourself.
I think you can equate this to tying flys, you did not manufacture the hook but you sure did decorate it and can take greate pride in the fish you caught with it.