True, unfortunately.No big deal. Chances are you'll nick your first strop much worse than this.
It's not normally $15. This brand of strops are usually around $40-$50usd. I just got it on sale, that's all.It’s a $15 dollar strop?
It will not affect the blade. You can smooth the back side, but just use the front side, you will be fine.
On the Illinois strop the ribs on the back are created with a roller during manufacture which compresses and stiffens the surface temper of the opposing front, flesh side. Unlike many strops the Illinois #827 Russian leather strop is not reversible.It's not normally $15. This brand of strops are usually around $40-$50usd. I just got it on sale, that's all.
Also apparently with this style, the flesh side IS the "front side".
The surface on the opposing side has an extremely rough ribbed texture pressed into it. No idea why, but switching to the top-grain side's out.