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1999 Dell'Arte Minor Swing Without Truss Rod

jonpowljonpowl Hercules, CA✭✭✭ Dupont MD-100, Altamira M01F
A 1999 Dell'Arte Minor Swing is available nearby at a reasonable price, and would probably be a nice upgrade from a Gitane DG-255. I believe this guitar was built in the US, has mahogany back, sides, and neck, spruce top, ebony fingerboard, but no truss rod. Does anybody have any experience with early Dell'Arte models built without a truss rod? Any feedback will be appreciated.


  • slowlearnerslowlearner ✭✭
    Posts: 37
    Are you sure it doesn't have a truss rod? I have a second hand Dell'Arte that I purchased from Michael that does not have a truss rod cap on the headstock. What Michael told me was that many GJ guitars have truss rods that are only adjustable from the inside. I'm no expert and I had hoped Michael or one of the luthiers would have provided a more informed opinion.
    If the price is right and you like the guitar I'd say buy it. My guess is that if you loosen the strings and can squeeze your hand inside you'll find an adjustment nut for the truss rod. ( I could be's happened before)
  • pickitjohnpickitjohn South Texas Corpus, San Antonio, AustinVirtuoso Patenotte 260
    Posts: 936

    Specs. from 2001 Michael sold here…

    Brand Dell'Arte
    Year 2001
    Model Number Minor Swing
    Serial Number 0501452
    Sound Hole Oval
    Fret Neck 14 Fret
    Condition Very Good
    Size 15 15/16"
    Scale Length 675mm
    Nut Width 1 7/8"
    Top Spruce
    Back and Sides Indian Rosewood (Solid)
    Neck Mahogany
    Fingerboard Ebony
    Binding Ivoroid
    Finish High Gloss
    Tailpiece Saga Nickel
    Tuners Kluson Nickel
    Action 2.8mm
    Strings Argentine 1610MF
    Case DATT Hardshell
    Pickup(s) None
    Truss Rod Yes
    Weight 4.25 lbs

    My 2005 Hommage is inside sound hole close to the top

    pick on

    pickitjohn :peace:
  • jonpowljonpowl Hercules, CA✭✭✭ Dupont MD-100, Altamira M01F
    Posts: 699
    The current owner of the guitar told me he can't see the truss rod inside the guitar but John Kinnard was nice enough to reply to my email inquiry and said that there should be a truss rod. Unfortunately, it is a 4.5 hour drive to see the guitar. As it has a cracked top, which is longer than I originally thought, I'll probably wait for a nicer guitar. If anybody is interested it can be found here. Thanks for the assistance!
  • MichaelHorowitzMichaelHorowitz SeattleAdministrator
    Posts: 6,116
    @jonpowl it could possibly be one of the early Mexican built Dell Artes. I think some of them didn't have truss rods, but I can't say for sure.

    Every US built Dell Arte I've seen has had a truss rod, always accessed from within the soundhole.
  • jonpowljonpowl Hercules, CA✭✭✭ Dupont MD-100, Altamira M01F
    Posts: 699
    Thanks @MichaelHorowitz! The inside label does say it was handcrafted in San Diego by John Kinnard, so I'm pretty sure it is US made. John Kinnard said the same thing in his email. I'm more worried about the 5-6" crack on the top, even though it is supposed to be very slight. Serial # is 899XXX.
  • klaatuklaatu Nova ScotiaProdigy Rodrigo Shopis D'Artagnan, 1950s Jacques Castelluccia
    Posts: 1,665
    Has the crack been cleated? A well repaired crack should not be a problem. Michael Bauer has a '64 Favino with sixteen (!) cracks in the top, and it's the only Favino I've ever played that I thought sound better than mine.

    "It's a great feeling to be dealing with material which is better than yourself, that you know you can never live up to."
    -- Orson Welles
  • jonpowljonpowl Hercules, CA✭✭✭ Dupont MD-100, Altamira M01F
    Posts: 699
    No repairs have been done to the crack. The owner says it is very minor, more like a "hair line" crack. The trouble is that the guitar is located deep in the mountains southeast of Lake Tahoe. I would only drive that far for a perfect guitar at a great price.
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