Wholesale squad changes during January are fraught with danger and Montrose, Peterhead and Stenhousemuir appear to be fairly content with the squads that have been dominating Scottish League Two.
But, as Ross County have proven in the top flight in recent years, it can reap rewards and the spectre of demotion from the Scottish Professional Football League had the sides at the other end of the set-up scrambling for fresh talent.
Bottom side Cowdenbeath were most active, with five players recruited during January and even paying fees for two strikers - the experienced David Cox from League One outfit Forfar Athletic and Aiden Malone from juniors Linlithgow Rose - despite the lack of money in Scotland's fourth tier.
So far, it has not been able to turn the tide for the Blue Brazil, who ended January having gone 20 games without a win, suffering three straight defeats and being nine points adrift at the bottom.
Likewise fourth-bottom Berwick Rangers, who paid out fees for striker Ousman See from Forfar Athletic and midfielder Declan O'Kane from junior outfit Musselburgh Athletic but who only ended their run of five winless games and three consecutive losses by beating Cowden in the month's final game.
The Wee Rangers were also left without influential midfielder Michael McKenna after they accepted a predatory bid from Arbroath.
They and Cowden will hope that it is merely taking time for their new squads to gel, as appears to be happening with Clyde, who finally ended an 11-game run without a win with consecutive victories over leaders Montrose and second-top Peterhead to narrow the gap with Berwick.
Second-bottom Edinburgh City finished the month with three wins in four games but suffered a blow when Liam Henderson, their new recruit from Falkirk, left within 22 days to take up an offer with Stirling Lions in NPL Western Australia.
Moving in the opposite direction, to Scotland's Stirling Albion, former St Johnstone midfielder Kevin Moon arrived from Joondalup in the National Premier Leagues Western Australia.
The Binos also brought the best known signing of window on deadline day, with former Falkirk and Hearts 32-year-old Darren Barr, who was capped by Scotland in 2008, arriving from Championship outfit Greenock Morton.
With former West Bromwich Albion winger Zak Elbouzedi among their four arrivals, Elgin City appear to have recruited wisely and three straight wins reignited their promotion hopes and lifted them into fourth spot by the end of January.
In: Jamie Henry, midfielder (Arbroath). Loan: Conor O'Keefe, midfielder (St Mirren); Evan Horne, midfielder (St Mirren); Ben Armour, forward (Greenock Morton); Cameron Salkeld (Carlisle United).
Out: Dan Orsi, midfielder (Annan Athletic). Loan ended: Ross Fergusson, forward (Queen of the South)
In: Ousman See, forward (Forfar Athletic, undisclosed); Paul Willis (East Fife); Declan O'Kane, midfielder (Musselburgh Athletic, undisclosed); Jamie Todd (Tranent); Evan Smith (Eyemouth United). Loan: Jack Hamilton, forward (Livingston); Alex Petkov (Heart of Midlothian).
Out: Michael McKenna, midfielder (Arbroath, undisclosed); Pat Scullion, defender (Edinburgh City); Christopher McDonald, defender (Morpeth Town); Scott Hay. Loan ended: Callum Donaldson, defender (Hibernian); Kevin Waugh, defender (Hibernian); Marcus Godinho, defender (Heart of Midlothian); Andy Irving, midfielder (Heart of Midlothian); Marcus Godinho, defender (Heart of Midlothian). Loan: Stuart Allan, goalkeeper (Tweedmouth Rangers); Jack Murray, midfielder (Ormiston Primrose); Gary Doolan, midfielder (Burntisland Shipyard); Stuart Briggs, forward (Eyemouth United); Jamie Chapman, midfielder (Dunbar United); Jack Gillan, midfielder (Arniston Rangers); Evan Smith, defender (Eyemouth United)
In: Ally Love, midfielder (Brechin City); Tom Lang, defender (Stranraer). Loan: Jack Boyle, midfielder (Huddersfield Town); Dylan Cogill, defender (Huddersfield Town); Kyle Gourlay, goalkeeper (Dundee); Adam Martin, forward (Alloa Athletic).
Arriving after January window: Ray Grant, midfielder (Norwich City); Steve Kipre, forward (unattached).
Out: Mark Burbidge (Kilbirnie Ladeside, undisclosed); David Gormley, forward. Loan ended: Kyle Bradley, defender (Rangers); Peter Morrison, goalkeeper (Motherwell); Andy Munro, defender (Forfar Athletic). Loan: Lewis Wilson, defender (Cumbernauld Colts).
In: Jordan Hornby, defender (Dundee United); David Cox, forward (Forfar Athletic, undisclosed); Ben Reilly, midfielder (East Fife); Aiden Malone, forward (Linlithgow Rose, undisclosed). Loan: Craig Henderson, midfielder (Livingston); Brandon Luke, midfielder (Dunfermline Athletic).
Out: Josh Morris, forward (Whitehill Welfare); Lewis Turnbull, midfielder; Lyle Kellichan, defender. Loan ended: Ben Stirling, defender (Hibernian); Harris Kay, midfielder (Dundonald Bluebell); Hamish Thomson, defender (Burntisland Shipyard).
In: Pat Scullion, defender (Berwick Rangers). Loan: Graham Taylor, midfielder (Dundee United); Cameron Blues, midfielder (Falkirk).
Out: Liam Henderson, defender (Stirling Lions); Moses Olanrewaju, midfielder. Loan ended: Andrew Blake, defender (Hibernian).
In: Iain Ross, goalkeeper (Broughty Athletic). Loan: Brett Long, goalkeeper (Dundee United); Andrew McDonald, defender (St Mirren); Zak Elbouzedi (Inverness Caledonian Thistle)
Out: None. Loan ended: Lewis Strapp (Greenock Morton). Loan: Aaron Whitehead, defender (Lochee United).
In: Lewis Milne, midfielder (Forfar Athletic)
Out: Ryan Ferguson, midfielder (Forfar West End); Danny Cavanagh, midfielder (Forfar West End). Loan ended: Cammy Ballantyne, defender (Dundee United)
Out: Mickael Ngango-Dikobo, forward. Loan: Marc Lawrence, midfielder (Ellon United).
In: Kevin Moon, midfielder (Joondalu); Darren Barr, defender (Greenock Morton). Loan: Danny Jardine, midfielder (St Johnstone).
Out: Scott Davidson, defender. Loan ended: Callumn Morrison, forward (Heart of Midlothian); Mark Foden, goalkeeper (Ross County). Loan: Brooklyn Mair (Rosyth); Luke Martin (Thorniewood United); Justin Watson (Shotts Bon Accord); Taylor Evans (Shotts Bon Accord); Ross Cameron (Camelon).