Lakland Skyline 5-ers...Opinions??

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by BASSnSAX, Jun 8, 2003.

  1. I'm looking to get a new 5 string bass, and I stumbled upon the Lakland Skyline Joe Osborn 5.

    Now this bass sounds like it would fit my needs: passive, maple fretboard, swamp ash body. It also comes in black body and maple fretboard, which is what I would definately like, emulating a Geddy Lee Jazz Bass, with extended range. :cool: Everything looks choice on it, and I played a 55-01 at a local shop.

    But a few questions popped into my head:
    -Is the neck on the JO5 similar to the neck on the 55-01?

    -Is the B-string very tight? Is it articulate?

    -How is the weight?

    -Does this bass have the fabled "vibe" to it? I would assume many of them are the same, due to mass production...I could be wrong.

    -Is the string spacing all the same as on the 55-01?

    -Has anyone ever NOT liked this bass?

    -Does anyone know anyone who is selling a black JO5 with maple 'board?

    Thanks a bundle everyone. I'm also sorry if this may be a repeat thread...
  2. gfab333


    Mar 22, 2000
    Honolulu, Hawaii
    This bass is a great instrument for the price! There are a number of posts here that you can review, you just have to search the various permutations of skyline JO5, joe osborn skyline 5, etc., etc.

    I bought mine with a J-Retro preamp which was factory installed by Lakland. I love this bass! I've played several passive Skyline JO5s and they sound very nice as well. The passive Skyline JO5 is still an excellent bass, but I really enjoy my J-Retroed Skyline! here's an old thread I started, just my two cents:

    My Skyline JO5 is 11 lbs, thus, it's heavier than my MTD 535 and F Bass BN5, but I can handle the extra poundage with no problem. I actually haven't A/Bed an 55-01 with my bass, so I can't comment on your questions on the 55-01. I can say that the Skyline Jo's neck is very, very comfortable. It is not chunky at all. very easy to play!

    The B string has a fullness and clarity that is balanced with the other strings. In other words, it's very decent. As far as your question about the articulateness of the B string, I can say that it's not as articulate as an MTD 535 or Fodera, but your talking about a tremendous price difference. For the the price of a Skyline JO5, I would venture to say that you get an excellent sounding B string. It is full bottomed, warm, has a good deal of authority, and IS NOT muddy at all. As previously indicated, it has a tonality which compliments the excellent jazz bass style tone of the other strings. this bass gets a "buy rating" from me!
  3. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    My only problem with Laklands is that the body is a little big for my liking, but other than that...fantastic basses.
  4. Could somebody furnish me with a side shot of their JO5 neck? vs. like a Fender Jazz? That would be the peak of cool.
  5. the radius of the neck on a fender american delux 5 string jazz bass is 9.5”

    the radius on the lakland JO 5 string bass is 10"

    so the lakland is a little wider.

    according to lakland the neck depth at the 12th fret is .92" and the depth at the first freat is .81"

    all lakland 5 string basses have a 35" scale so the B string is going to be tight and nice. that is their trademark.

    if you go to you can find all the info and tech details on the bass. and if you go to you can see a bunch of JO's for sale and they have good pics of all them.
  6. mikezimmerman

    mikezimmerman Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2001
    Omaha, Nebraska
    The fretboard raduis has nothing to do with the neck width--it descibes how flat the fretboard is.

    However, the Lakland neck is wider than the Fender, at least the American Standard Jazz 5--I haven't played the Deluxe in a while.

    My understanding is that the 55-01 and JO5 necks are pretty much the same, and I like the 55-01 neck quite a bit. The low B is very good, too.

  7. I actually have both a 55-01 and a JO5 and the JO5's neck is slightly slimmer--to me much more a result I was using the JO5 as my main bass until recently--unfortunately there is a problem with my JO5's neck--right behind the nut there is some serious cracking going on...I hope to get a replacement neck from Lakland, but nevertheless, I highly recommend the JO5...I wish I had a J-Retro installed in it like gfab!!

  8. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Hmmmm ... isn't the JO5 the same size as a Fender Jazz?
  9. Anyone happen to know the neck radius of a Fender MIM P-bass? Thanks a bundle everyone! :)
  10. All of the Lakland 5 string Skyline series basses have virtually the same neck profile.

    I have both, a 55-01 and a Scheff in the Skyline and the necks are identical, both basses are excellent. I had a 55-02 for a while and the neck was yet, the same.

    I also own a Scheff 5 USA and to me, the Skyline necks feel just as good as the USA models.. but the USA and Skyline necks are NOT interchangeable.

    My good friend has a Joe Osborn 5 with a J-retro preamp and a 55-01 he loves both of them... same neck. Although he finds the Fralin pickups in the JO a bit noisey.

    But, you can't go wrong with ANY Lakland bass and they do retain their value.

    Personally, I prefer the standard Lakland body shape over the Osborn Jazz Bass shaped body.
    It is more comfortable and better balanced to me, either seated or standing, than the Osborn.

    Way back when, regarding the Jazz Bass body shape, Fender called it the "off-set waist body design" and it was purposly designed for a standing playing position.

    They used the off-set design on the Jazzmaster and Jaguar guitars and maybe a couple of other instruments.

    It was a really big deal back in the '60's.

    Some of the really old Fender instruments have an off-set decal on the headstock.
  11. space4


    May 24, 2003
    Is the neck radius 10" on the Lakland Skyline 55-01? Does this measure the same down the whole frett board?