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Dell'Arte Pigalle Availability

Hey everyone, this is my first post. I've really enjoyed reading all of your thoughts and ideas on this forum. This is exactly what I've been looking for.

I haven't seen much mention of the Dell'Arte Pigalle on posts with any recent dates. I've decided on this as my next guitar--I was between this and the JJ Gitane, but the Dell'Arte wins by a nose (especially thanks to the position markers being in the "right" spot). Unfortunately, It appears these are sold out or on order at every online dealer, and no end to the shortage in sight. Has anyone heard what's going on with these guitars? The entire Dell'Arte website is down right now which also concerns me.

Another cool thing I spotted online recently is the tweed guardian cases for Selmacs they now are selling. I've seen them on ebay for between $100-150. These look very nice.

Thanks for your input!



  • fraterfrater Prodigy
    Posts: 763
    I've heard there will be some changes in the Dell'Arte brand ownership, but I'm not sure.

    If the main problem with the JJ is the position marker at the 10th fret, you can easily have it replaced by any luthier with little expense!
  • kellysedarskellysedars USA/IowaNew
    Posts: 11
    hmmmm, very interesting. I hope this does not lead to any changes for the worse. Maybe I should postpone my decision!

    The position marker is not the only thing...I was half joking with that comment. The hardware, the neck in general, the setup, the reputation are the real reasons I favor the Dell'Arte. I guess if there are some changes happening though, that may make the reputation yet to be proven. The position marker is an issue, though. Every time I pick up an oval hole guitar with the strange marker, I get totally confused about where I'm playing. It's kind of like a rear-view mirror in your car, you don't realize how much you rely on it until it's gone. Having played American made or designed guitars for 20 years, I've become dependent on these markers to give me my bearings. I'm sure I'd get used to it after a while, but I'd rather just have it be familiar to begin with.

    I like the Jorgenson model very much, and I love my D-500, but I've seen a little much variability with Gitanes off the shelf. Some are beautiful instruments, and others are terrible. I don't want to roll the dice that much since I'll most likely have to order the guitar sight-unseen. There is no local dealer for Dell'Arte, and the Gitane dealer does not stock the Jorgenson model. I like the idea that they've (pigalle's) been given some bench time to make sure they play well, are reasonably intonated, etc.

    Thanks for the info. on the possible ownership change. I'll be curious to see what happens in the near future.
  • Josh HeggJosh Hegg Tacoma, WAModerator
    Posts: 622
    I was in the same boat about 8 months ago. In fact I had my card out to buy a Pigalle at Djangofest! Ended up not making the purchase and I'm glad I didn't.

    The Pigalle is a nice guitar. It has a nice tone and plays well. Hardware is no better then the DG-300 or DG-310. I have played and worked on both extensively. Like I said up until very recently I was a Gitane sceptic. I knew they had potential but needed work. Saga has really been doing a nice job on the things that have been a problem in the past. The tuners on the 300 and 310 are nice. Much nicer then on the Pigalle. The tailpieces have been finished to higher standard and don't buzz. The fret work has been much cleaner. The main thing I like about the DG-300 over the Pigalle is the neck. Saga hit a home run finally! The 310 has a great neck too and has a more modern feel but it not ultra thin like the Gitane in the past. The one thing that Saga has not figured out is that the bridge they use is what is killing the tone on the 300 series guitars. I have built many bridges for the Gitanes that really bring out the true obtainable tone of these instruments. And let me say that after setting up the 300 and 310 correctly with the correct bridge and action changed my mind for good on the Piaglle vs the 300. The 310 is great as well but I am partial to the Selmer style neck of the 300 that really sways my vote. However for those that like the modern feeling neck the 310 would make you very happy. The tone of these guitars is great (after a proper set up and bridge) and for less then $1,000 you can not go wrong with either model.

  • fraterfrater Prodigy
    Posts: 763
    I'm a DG 300 enthusiast myself. Right out of the box, I was surprised by the quality of the wood used for the top. Compared to the DG 255 or 250 M, it's definitely in another league. The neck is just great, beefy as in the Selmer tradition and yet very fast. The first Pigalle, as Josh reported in another post, used a 255 body (certainly not better than the DG 300's) and had the neck made at Dell'Arte but, as I said, the neck is probably the "forte" of the DG 300. Finally, consider the DG 300 is much cheaper than the Pigalle...

    As for the ownership at Dell' Arte, as I said, I' ve just been hearing rumors so don't take it for granted. It may well prove to be false...
  • NEvansNEvans Austin, TxNew
    Posts: 18
    I don't know anything about ownership. But I was also just looking for a pigalle. I ended up buying a Dell Arte Minor Swing, which cost me a little more, but I love it. What I did hear when I was searching for a pigalle was that Dell Arte is using a different manufacturer for the bodies and that the new runs of pigalles are not going to sound the same as the old ones (for the worse). It's a shame because all the pictures I've seen look better than the old ones with the yellow top. That's just preference though.
  • Josh HeggJosh Hegg Tacoma, WAModerator
    Posts: 622
    Listen... the Pigalle is a Saga for the most part. The head stock says Del Arte but it is a Saga made instrument. The new pigalle that will be coming out is going to be made by Music Link AKA Paris Swing. So the new line of pigalle are different. I have played one of the new ones and they are nice but not $1,600 nice. Go with the 300 or the 310. If your going to spend $1,600 or more then go with a Manouche or even a hand made instrument.

  • GadjangoGadjango New
    Posts: 26
    One thing to consider is that not all Pigalles are created equal. I'm sure the same applies to the 300's and 310's, but I remember when Dusty Strings in Seattle got in a Pigalle (with the orange finish, which I prefer) when I was shopping for my first GJazz guitar. I played it quite a bit and was blown away by how great it sounded, but since I wasn't very familiar with how the guitars were supposed to sound, I didn't totally trust my take on the instrument and didn't end up picking it up.

    Lo and behold, a few months later I was talking to my teacher about it and he told me that one of the Ferret brothers ended up buying or trading for the guitar when they did a workshop at DS, so apparently it WAS a great guitar! However, I have since come across a couple more at another shop here and they were the deadest, worst sounding guitars I have ever played. Both sounded about the same and I was amazed that the differences could be that extreme. That one I played first was a super resonant and sweet sounding instrument and the others were absolute dogs. They had a lot of bark, but sounded super tight and like they had socks in them.

    Anyway, I'm not trying to steer anyone off of the Pigalles, just posting my experiences with the ones I played and I can say confidently that I wouldn't purchase one without playing it first. If someone else has had better experiences with them, I'd love to hear about it.

    Just as a disclaimer, I'm not a hot GJazz guitar player by any means, but I have played a few Favinos and a Park and other Delle Artes as well as some Saga's so whether or not I can shred, I do have some idea of what a decent guitar should sound like and that first Pigalle had IT.
  • kellysedarskellysedars USA/IowaNew
    Posts: 11
    Okay, $1600 is a different story...The pigalles I've seen online were listed at around $1,100-1,300. I'd be looking at a totally non-chinese guitar for $1600--as good as they are. Maybe the price is going up for the new-fangled version. I'm really not sure what to get, but I just want the best bang for my buck.

    I may have found yet another alternative. There is an ebay vendor that is selling the DG-255 with upgraded hardware and calling it the "Marguerite" model. Unfortunately no bridge upgrade, but still an attractive option. Apparently, he spends some bench time setting these up, as well. May be the they are only about $700-800.

    Thanks for all the input!

  • sockeyesockeye Philadelphie sur SchuylkillNew
    Posts: 415
    I don't think there are going to be any more Pigalles, at least not the ones with the Saga body and the Dell Arte neck. The deal Dell Arte has with MusicLink to manufacture guitars in China under the Dell Arte name has AFAIK superceded the Saga deal.
  • MichaelHorowitzMichaelHorowitz SeattleAdministrator
    Posts: 6,069

    I may have found yet another alternative. There is an ebay vendor that is selling the DG-255 with upgraded hardware and calling it the "Marguerite" model. Unfortunately no bridge upgrade, but still an attractive option. Apparently, he spends some bench time setting these up, as well. May be the they are only about $700-800.

    Josh does all the work on the Sagas here at Djangobooks. He could do all the mods on the Marguerite plus a custom bridge and it would still come out cheaper.

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