Our Acoustic instruments are truly a combination of Pre War tradition and innovation.

Our purpose...

CB Alyn presents the definitive acoustic Dreadnaught, OM and J-180 style instrument. We combine tradition and innovation in a unique way, pointing a new direction for acoustic instruments.

The CB Alyn guitar is alive. It is the kind of instrument that stirs the soul and inspires creativity.

Our instrument’s body, top and neck are mated to work as one integrated unit.

You will notice an evenness of tone, volume and attack that is uncanny and unlike any other instrument you have played.

The rare tropical woods that go into making our instruments are sourced from suppliers who are cooperating in sustained growth and reforestation programs.

The woods we use are carefully selected for grain, color and stability by our master craftsmen.


The Brasilian *, Indian, Cambodian, Borneo and Honduran Rosewood, Vermont Maple, Honduran Mahogany, Chocolate Mango, Adirondack, Carpathian, Alaskan Sitka and Englemann spruce tone-woods are all air and kiln dried for many years.After drying the tone-woods are carefully matched to each other to bring out the best of each and to produce a sum greater than its parts.

CB Alyn Guitarworks has developed a matte gloss finish that rivals the colour and feel of the lacquers of yesterday, yet offers more protection and stability.

CB Alyn Guitarworks are available in a vast range of colours including Antique Tobacco Sunburst, Amber Natural, Translucent Rangoon Red & Bora Bora Blue.

With an incredibly detailed fret job and action that is less than 3/32th of an inch at the last fret, these may be the best playing acoustic guitars in the world.

* All of our Brasilian rosewwod is old growth originally sourced in the 1960's thru late 1970's

Another important, but seldom realized, factor determining the sound quality and sustain of an instrument is the neck to body joint.

Our neck to body joints are machined to exacting tolerances that they almost become one piece of wood. However, two different types of wood for neck and body produce a better sounding instrument. The body can be made of richer tone producing woods, while the neck is made of hardier woods.

We've chosen to join our acoustic guitar necks and bodies with the time honoured dovetail construction using traditional hot hide glue, because this creates a "constant pressure" union for outstanding sustain and tone.
This makes it easier to repair the guitar if the need ever arises.

We individually match bodies and necks before they are painted. Bodies and neck are painted separately. After the body is painted, the neck joint is again checked for a perfect fit of wood to wood connection.

Thank you for visiting. CB Alyn Guitarworks, we are located in Cayo Hueso, Fl USA. More commonly referred to as Key West .

Meet the CB Alyn® Acoustic Guitar family

HD 50 Dreadnaught Standard.

OM 50 Orchestra Standard.

HJ 180 Artist.

HD 70 Dreadnaught Artist.

Adirondack Spruce

North America. (Picea Rubens)

Also known as Eastern red or Appalachian spruce, Adirondack defined guitars of the pre-WWII era. Its availability is beginning to increase slightly, as another generation of trees matures, although they’re still considerably smaller than their old growth forebearers. Current supplies of Adirondack tend to lack a certain aesthetic purity of look (they tend to be wider-grained and more irregular in color and grain patterns). Tonally, Adirondack is even more dynamic than Sitka spruce, with a higher ceiling for volume. The payoff is the ability to drive an Adirondack top hard and hear it get louder and louder without losing clarity; it’s hard to overplay it. 

It has lots of headroom to strum the guitar aggressively without distortion. It also has a high Overtone content. For strumming and flatpicking you can't beat Red Spruce. Another sonic nuance is  “an undeniable sweetness in every note, especially in the mids.” Adirondack Spruce was popularized by Martin on many of their “prewar” guitars and remains a revered tonewood by players and collectors alike.  Its use was all but discontinued due to over-harvesting of the resource but has recently been reintroduced, both thanks to 50 years of regeneration and to the legendary status that this traditional tonewood has attained. The small size of most logs and a shortage of wood conforming to market preference for even color and regularity of grain conspire to keep the price of red spruce extremely high.

Exceptionally good Adirondack Spruce soundboards are hard to get and come at exorbitant prices. However, they do build very fine instruments. Cosmetically, Adirondack soundboards tend to have wider grain spacing than Sitka or Englemann, and their color occasionally has striping that goes from creamy to light tan. Creamy white in color, it is called both Appalachian and Adirondack spruce. Similar to Sitka, it responds well to either a light or firm touch, but has higher resonance. Interesting grain color variations make this another visually desirable top. Red spruce is relatively heavy, has a high velocity of sound, and has the highest stiffness across and along the grain of all the top woods. Like Sitka, it has strong fundamentals, but it also exhibits a more complex overtone content.

Tops made out of red spruce have the highest volume ceiling of any species, yet they also have a rich fullness of tone that retains clarity at all dynamic levels. In short, red spruce may very well be the Holy Grail of top woods for the steel-string guitar. If players and builders were able to overcome phobias about unevenness of color, grain irregularity, minor knots, and four-piece tops, many more great-sounding guitars could be produced while the supply of potentially usable red spruce is still available.

Engelmann Spruce

Western North America (Picea Englemannii),
European (Picea abies/excelsa)

Goes well with all styles of guitars and players, but especially favored by fingerpickers. Englemann Spruce is a bit softer than Sitka, and while many sets can be quite stiff and produce wonderful tap tones, they are not as consistent as Sitka and you may spend a considerable amount of time working with suppliers to procure the best, stiffest sets.

The color of Englemann tends to be a bit whiter and creamier than Sitka, and the silking patterns are very pronounced and quite striking in master-grade soundboards. With its high overtone content and strong fundamental tone. Englemann Spruce delivers a warm mellow tone that is well suited for light strumming and fingerpicking.Engelmann is often more expensive than Sitka due to the lower yield from its smaller logs and because most logs have a spiral-grained structure that renders them unsuitable for proper quarter-sawing.

Engelmann is considerably lighter in color than Sitka spruce, lighter in weight, and usually less stiff, resulting in a slightly lower velocity of sound.

Engelmann also tends to exhibit a weaker fundamental tone, although it produces a noticeably broader and stronger overtone component. It is therefore a good choice for players who require a richer, more complex tone than can be obtained from most Sitka tops, particularly when the instrument is played softly.

Engelmann is considerably lighter in color than Sitka spruce, lighter in weight, and usually less stiff, resulting in a slightly lower velocity of sound.

Engelmann also tends to exhibit a weaker fundamental tone, although it produces a noticeably broader and stronger overtone component. It is therefore a good choice for players who require a richer, more complex tone than can be obtained from most Sitka tops, particularly when the instrument is played softly. Engelmann is considerably lighter in color than Sitka spruce, lighter in weight, and usually less stiff, resulting in a slightly lower velocity of sound.

Engelmann also tends to exhibit a weaker fundamental tone, although it produces a noticeably broader and stronger overtone component. It is therefore a good choice for players who require a richer, more complex tone than can be obtained from most Sitka tops, particularly when the instrument is played softly.

Englemann Spruce (USA) Is prized for being similar in color to European (German) White spruce. Extremely light in weight, it seems to produce a slightly louder and "open" sound than Sitka spruce. Grows in the  American Rocky Mountains and the Pacific Cascades. Considerably limited supply.           

There are other spruces that differ from Sitka in that they are a little sweeter sounding.  Along with  Engelmann spruce from Western Canada, there is blue Engelmann spruce from Colorado. These have become popular with fingerstyle guitarists.  When Engelmann spruce was first being discovered by luthiers, it was touted as an inexpensive replacement for German spruce and in fact, it has many of the same fine qualities- a robust sound rich in harmonics with good projection. 

European or Silver Spruce, the spruce of choice for makers of classical guitars, shares a number of characteristics with Engelmann spruce, including color, lightness of weight, harmonic complexity, and fullness at the lower end of the dynamic range. Because of its visual similarity and significantly higher cost, its name has been affixed more than once to a piece of Engelmann spruce by unscrupulous (or uninformed) wood dealers and luthiers. 

European spruce differs from Engelmann in its potentially quicker response and greater headroom. The availability of anything better than mediocre European spruce (which is easily exceeded in quality by the better grades of Engelmann - a commodity that is still readily obtainable) is sharply limited, unless the boards are selected at the source in Europe.    

German Spruce: Very “ringy” and white in color. Extremely clear and bell like, has the versatility of Sitka. Exceptional sound for light to very firm techniques.                                

Recently, several European alternatives to German spruce have emerged in the American market. The first is Italian spruce and its cousin, Alpine/Italian Spruce. Italian spruce is of the same species as German spruce (picea abies). Alpine/Italian spruce (also picea abies) is similar in tone, but varies in appearance in that it is a little more pink/tan in color, though still basically white.

Sitka Spruce

North America Rain forests of Alaska and Canada: (Picea Sitchensis).

Sitka spruce is the top wood standard of the modern era. It’s used on 85-90 percent of the guitars that Taylor makes. Its dynamic range is very broad, allowing for everything from aggressive strumming and flatpicking to fingerpicking. Sitka spruce is creamy white with a pink tint. It has long wood fibers, great resonance, dimensional stability and good gluing properties. These provide it with resilience and elasticity. Sitka spruce is stiff along and across the grain with a characteristically light weight. This creates a high velocity of sound. Sitka spruce has a strong fundamental tone with relatively few overtones. This leads to a direct, punchy tone with great headroom. Sitka spruce has long been the staple choice for steel-string guitars made in the United States, though a handful of classical builders like it as well. It is well known for its pinkish-white color that tans nicely over the years.

Sitka Spruce is an excellent choice for just about any steel-stringed flattop guitar. It is light, strong, and tends to be consistently stiffer than other varieties of spruce. In master grades the color and grain are very tight and even. Sitka is probably the most popular top selection, due to its availability and to the high yield from its characteristically large-diameter logs.

Quartersawn Sitka is quite stiff along and across the grain; high stiffness, combined with the relatively light weight characteristics of most softwoods, is a recipe for high velocity of sound.

A strong fundamental to overtone ratio gives Sitka a powerful, direct tone that is capable of retaining its clarity when playing forcefully. Sitka Spruce provides consistent quality and straight uniform grain, longevity, and tensile strength. Tonally, it provides vibrant transmission of sound. The break-in period for a new Sitka guitar can also be longer than that of other spruces.

Western Red Cedar

Western North America: (Thuja Plicata).  

Western Red Cedar has traditionally been used on classical and flamenco guitars. In recent years, flattop builders have been incorporating this wood with much success on steel-stringed instruments. 

The tone WRC produces tends to be a bit warmer with less sparkle. Some have described the tone as “intimate.” It is enjoyable to work with this wood and it builds very good finger-style guitars. Cedar is less dense than spruce, and that softness typically translates into a sense of sonic warmth. If Sitka has a full dynamic range, cedar makes quieter tones louder, but it also imposes more of a ceiling on high volume levels driven by an aggressive attack. If one tries to drive a cedar top hard, at a certain point it will reach a volume limit.

Typically, players with a lighter touch sound wonderful on a cedar-top guitar, fingerstyle players especially — that lighter touch will be amplified a little more, and one’s attack never reaches the ceiling. Flatpickers are likely to hit the ceiling fast, and might be frustrated by an inability to get the tonal output to match their attack

Western red cedar is by far the most popular cedar used in soundboards. It is common to classical guitars and is used in a strong minority of steel-strings. It has a nice red-tan color that ranges from light chocolate or honey brown to cinnamon or beige.

It has a quickness of sound that exceeds any of the spruces, a higher overtone content, lower fundamental content, and lower stiffness along the grain. Additionally, cedar tops require a significantly shorter break-in period than spruce tops, a phenomenon that a few dealers of new guitars are beginning to pick up on.

'Openness' is a particularly interesting characteristic. Spruce-topped guitars can sound "tight" at first and may take some time to open up. Normally a spruce-topped guitar needs to be played-in for a period of time (months, even years) before it’s sound is fully realized. 

Since World War II, cedar has been used extensively by makers of classical guitars. Cedar-topped guitars are characteristically lush, dark-toned, and bursting with flavor. They are often less powerful in projection than their spruce cousins, however, and they tend to lose clarity near the top of their dynamic range.

Having enough bottom end is never a problem for a cedar guitar, although preventing the sound from getting muddy sometimes is. Because of its pronounced weakness along the grain, it is used to its best advantage in smaller-bodied guitars or with non-scalloped braces.

Carpathian Spruce

Sourced from the Carpathian Mountians, and the Swiss Italian Alps.

Botanical name is Picea abies (formerly classified as Picea excelsa)

A couple hundred years ago, the story goes, a visiting monk took back some pine cones from the Adirondack range and with their seeds added to the other spruces of the Carpathians in the Ukraine. 

This native spruce of Europe is known in various languages as Sapin blanc du Nord, Epicea de Suede or Epicea de commun, épinette de Norvège, Abete rosso, Abeto rojo, gemeinefichte, jel europeiskaya, and in the USA as Norway spruce.

The scientific name is Picea abies (formerly classified as Picea excelsa).

Even though Picea abies is widely distributed throughout Europe, there are subtle differences in its characteristics from region to region - possibly because spruces readily hybridize. The Capathian spruce get acquire is harvested exclusively from the Carpathian Mountains. This spruce generally has a low specific gravity, a very desirable strength to weight ratio, and is creamy white in color. It is a joy to work with and has a beautiful ring-tone. Carpathian spruce has a unique character, and one I think you will find very desirable.

It seems very much like the Adirondack that we see from the States and Canada, perhaps fewer knots and defects, but when well quartered seems as stiff as the Adirondack spruce.  Unlike most Adirondack spruce the grain of this Carpathian spruce tends fairly typical of most European spruce.