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Lester DeVoe Blanca - possible slight neck bow - to buy or not to buy   You are logged in as Guest
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Aleks Di Roma

Posts: 2
Joined: Feb. 26 2022
From: Miami Beach, FL

Lester DeVoe Blanca - possible sligh... 

Hi all,

I am a brand new member, but I have been reading posts here for quite some time. My name is Aleks, I am a guitarist currently based in Miami Beach, FL.

My question is as follows - I am currently considering buying a 2012 Lester DeVoe blanca. The issue is that I am not able to play it or see it in person beforehand - it is in another part of the world. A friend of mine is based there and will be flying in a few weeks to the States, so I have an opportunity to buy it and have it brought to me. Today, my friend met with the seller and I joined them via video call.

The guitar seems to be in close to mint condition, seems to sound great (as much as phone sound can be an indication of this) but there is a bit of a concern that came up while taking a closer look with my friend's help - when I asked him to ensure the neck is straight, he says there is a spot at approximately 8th fret that shows a slight bow. Because my friend is not a musician, he isn't really able to play the guitar on this part of the neck and tell me whether there is any serious sound defect or buzzing. He did do his best to take some pictures (attached) to show what he is seeing.

Would love to hear some opinions on how serious of an issue, if any, this may be for the sound and value of the instrument and if from you perspective it is worth to risk it. Thank you in advance!

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 26 2022 3:46:16


Posts: 1506
Joined: Dec. 5 2007
From: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

RE: Lester DeVoe Blanca - possible s... (in reply to Aleks Di Roma

Someone should check the fretboard for straightness with a notched straightedge. The frets can be checked with a straightedge or by pressing one of the strings down at the first fret and 12th fret (or higher fret). If there’s no truss rod the only method I’ve seen to straighten a neck is by heat pressing. Sometimes a good result can eventually begin to bow again. At least the guitar is not under the same stress as a steel string acoustic.

Edit: What’s the string height at the 12th fret? It looks quite high in the pictures. Are there any fret outs or excessive buzz anywhere on the neck? What’s the string height near the bridge above the soundboard? Is the soundboard bulged by the bridge?

I posted a video about resetting a neck recently which didn’t generate much interest. This guitar could end up requiring a lot of work...


  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 26 2022 4:48:47
Stephen Eden


Posts: 914
Joined: Apr. 12 2008
From: UK

RE: Lester DeVoe Blanca - possible s... (in reply to Aleks Di Roma

Fingerboards should not be straight. There should be a slight forward bow, this is called neck relief and all guitars should have it to help avoid buzzing. Even electric guitars have neck relief.

How much relief should be there? This comes down to the individual maker. Most will not put more than 0.5mm across the entire neck. To test it, hold down at the 13th and the first and check the measurement between the fret and the bottom of the string around fret 7. More than 0.5mm then it may have a slight problem.

Signs the neck has pulled forward to much is a high action at the 12th fret and little saddle left to adjust.


Classical and Flamenco Guitars
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 26 2022 13:58:48

Posts: 14989
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Lester DeVoe Blanca - possible s... (in reply to Aleks Di Roma

Honestly it looks normal to me. If it did not have that slight bend then you need a ridiculous high bridge or it all buzzes. The ebony board looks very thick as well…which means if there were ever serious action problems the ebony could be shaved down so you could lower the bridge even more.


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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 26 2022 17:29:05
Aleks Di Roma

Posts: 2
Joined: Feb. 26 2022
From: Miami Beach, FL

RE: Lester DeVoe Blanca - possible s... (in reply to Aleks Di Roma

All, I really appreciate the responses - super helpful!

I did also reach out to Lester DeVoe, asked him to take a look at the images and he verified for me that he had built guitars with relief on the bass side in the past and that this looks like one of those models. He also said that the neck looks okay from what he can see. So, I pulled the trigger and got the guitar - should have it in my hands in a few weeks when my friend travels to the States and brings it over. Will hopefully record a video and post an update soon - may also ask for some additional advice if the action indeed needs lowering.

Thanks again, glad to join the community.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Feb. 27 2022 22:22:26
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