Agreed. While the idea of the blacksmith is awesome, it’s simply not worth the cost except on the off chance that you might get a useful perk. IMO it’s never worth upgrading, removing or replacing anything after you roll the dice to get the perk. If you get something useful, great - use that item until you replace it. If not, just live with a zero value perk until you replace the item and you can roll the dice on it to try to get something good. In that case, the only thing you’ve lost is some pearls which no longer are useful for anything else anyway.
That said, I still do use the blacksmith. I tend to just buy up any cheap gray items that granny has and melt them down. It’s a slow burn, but it’s a steady stream of pearls that I can occasionally use to upgrade something. Given that I don’t get new gear that often, I seem to have enough peals to get a random uber perk when I do get new items.
While I wish, like everyone else, that we had more control over the perks I think one possible compromise would be if they would at least sope the list of potential uber perks down to things you’re actively using at the time that you unlock the perk. If I’m using blizzard, sonic blast and shield then it would be great that any spell related perk I get would be for one of those spells. Same with troops.