Exact hand made reproductions of 1959 - 1964 Pre Cbs S guitars.

Reproduction vintage guitars exact in every detail.

Your perfect PRE CBS guitar made to measure

Pre CBS guitars and J Basses reproductions of vintage originals from the

1950´s and 1960´s accurate in every detail and dimension inside and out.

We use the same materials, basic technology, tooling and machines as were

used in the 1950´s and 1960´s to make all our bodies and necks.

Most of the hardware is also made by us. 

We have and can source some original vintage parts

for your guitar if required.


Our stock of alder and maple is over 20 years old.

The bodies are routed on a vintage overhead pinrouter that leaves the same characteristic cuts and traces in the cavities. The necks and bodies are made entirely by us.

Left handed models are also avaialble. 

If you have a specific question after having read all of this website I would be happy to reply.

We can only make very few guitars per year and delivery times vary according to workload.

                                      email: info@precbsguitars.com

Many people claim that they "pay great attention to detail" - ask to see the evidence and check those details for yourself.

Left handed models.
The wood working must be 100%  "right" inside and out because that cannot be corrected later.
I am often asked for dark fingerboards. Freshly sanded boards go much darker as they oxidise, then polishing them makes them darker still - then once they have been played for a while they go even darker and smoother.


We use the same materials, basic technology tooling and machines as were used in the 1950´s and 1960´s to make all our bodies and necks.

Our stock of alder and maple is over 20 years old.

The bodies are routed on a vintage overhead pinrouter that leaves the same characteristic cuts and traces in the cavities. The necks and bodies are made entirely by us.

Left handed models are also avaialble. 

We will also make replacement necks or bodies - if you have the original neck or body - made to your exact specification to match the neck or body you have.

I made my first guitar in 1978 - our finisher has been finishing and refinishing vintage guitars for over 40 years.  
It is not difficult to make guitars look correct outside (although not many manufacturers or luthiers do manage to get the details right) but if you want the guitar to look like an original the cavities inside the body also have to be accurate in terms of size and texture of cut.

The truss rod and truss rod nut should be the correct specification and size
according to the year - even the truss rod anchor varies - holes for cables correct positions and diameters, tooling and quality control marks in the wood - it is a long list. Please feel free to check all these details with me on your build.

What is the point of an aged or "relic" finish if the guitar does not play,
feel and sound exactly how you want and look totally original and authentic when you remove the pickguard, the neck and the rest of the hardware ?

We make very few guitars and so are able to pay great attention to every detail, select the best pieces of wood and to a certain extent "tailor" each guitar to what the customer wants.
You can choose the colour, year, month, neck size and profile.
It will be completely "vintage correct" with accurate vintage pre cbs cavities, "clay dots" or pearloid dots depending on the year-month, contours, correct paint for era (cellulose, acrylic, Homoclad or Fullerplast sealer where appropriate - we discuss this with each customer - there are various
"original" combinations) - all the small details you need to see. 

The quality of the wood for the neck and body is what makes the difference
in how it sounds and responds - particularly for the neck.
We have a stock of american red alder for 1956 onwards bodies that has
air dried for over 15 years, hard rock maple for over 25 years and some of the rosewood is over 50 years old. Mass production guitar manufacturers cannot offer that - there simply is not much old wood available anymore.

The wood used for sunburst bodies from 1954 -1956 was often Northern White Ash -  Fraxinus Americana - also called baseball bat ash - which can be quite dense and produce a heavy guitar body.

Swamp Ash or Punk Ash are not species - they are terms often used by guitar builders for lightweight low density ash that has grown in damp areas - these species are usually green ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica) and black ash (Fraxinus nigra). The grain on original guitars that are White Ash looks totally different from "swamp ash" - you can have either.

From about mid 1956 the bodies are mostly American Red Alder for sunbursts and solid colours and even a very few early 1960´s Blondes.

The neck to neck pocket fit will be perfect unless you want it to look sloppy - like many originals - the neck profile and dimensions will be made to fit your hand and technique - you can choose (within limits) the weight of the guitar and the sound - dark or bright - this usually depends on the density of the wood and therefore influences the weight of the guitar.

All the components on the guitar are made by us or specially for us to be perfect reproductions of original parts appropriate to the year of manufacture - plastic knobs, string guides, strap buttons, pickups, truss rods, truss rod nuts, bridges, screws, pickguard, jack cup, neck plate, tuner bushes.

Many customers like to supply original components from vintage strats and teles and do not need our hardware.
Our bodies and necks display the same tolerances and variances as
original instruments - for example the way the body contours and neck profiles vary.

If you want to copy a particular guitar we can accurately duplicate the contours from reference photos.

There are photos of actual paint references on the last page.

A word about paint colours – the vintage “custom colours”.

My colours are as close as humanly possible to what would have come out of the spraygun in Fullerton in the 1950´s and 60´s - but everybody has their own personal expectation and interpretation of what the original colour would have been and would now be after so many years of UV and oxidisation.
With this in mind we always send a sample of the colour on a piece of alder with the same sealer and primer to the customer for approval and therefore
 the colour could be adjusted to your taste if required.

The other thing to consider is - the blues and greens seemed to vary from guitar to guitar in spite of the colour being given the same name - have a look at the original colour charts from DuPont from 1956 - and you can see that it is quite possible that some times they received a different blue or green because the reference number was almost the same - an easy mistake to make - maybe this explains why there are so many opinions about what is Sonic Blue, Daphne Blue and so on. Maybe they got a tin of 2293 Cascade Gray instead of 2295 Sonic Blue from time to time or actually used Cascade Gray paint but used the name Sonic Blue because it sounded better in the catalogue - most genuine Sonic Blues look more like Cascade Gray - which has no green in it - whereas the formula for DuPont Sonic Blue has a component called Blue Toned Green.    


Then the same colour from the other manufacturer, Ditzler, is also different.

Photos are totally unreliable when choosing colours especially on a TFT computer screen - especially with blues and greens - look at the 2 versions of the same old photo below.

Daphne can look like Sea Foam - Sonic like Daphne and so on - as can be seen in the photos below.
The 4 photos of "blue" cavities are of the same guitar which is actually Sonic Blue before the clear topcoat had been applied !

With this in mind I always send my customers a sample of exactly the colour I intend to spray before I do so and will adjust the colour to match what you want if required.

Many people claim that they "pay great attention to detail" - you should ask for evidence especially regarding the cavities hidden under the pickguard - on the following pages I try and demonstrate our attention to detail.

If there you have any questions - especially regarding international shipping costs - please do not hesitate to contact us and ask.

Email: info@precbsguitars.com

Is John playing a Daphne Blue or Sonic Blue guitar ? Yet another example of why you cannot rely on photographs
to determine colours - especially blues.
The gold paint for the knobs is bronze powder based based paint and therefore it oxidises to green - it is not green paint. 
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