I'm envious of all you guys with these beautiful vintage instruments. In my neck of the woods the vintage models that come up for sale are all super expensive. Luckily I don't think there's much that can go wrong when building even the cheapest lap steel, and my modern models all sound fine to me. But you guys got some lookers, for sure!
I had a rogue and gigged it briefly when I was between fenders. It is high value for $100, but it has the same two issues I see on a lot of new lap steels.
1. Bad design. If whoever designed them understood why a guitar bridge doesn't belong on a lap steel, they'd save money and sound better.
2. Bland rock guitar pickups.
If I didn't have old ones, I'd find an especially nice piece of firewood and buy a low wind vintage fender style pickup, and make one.