Sadowsky JJ to PJ conversion a "NO GO"

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by JRBrown, Feb 21, 2005.

  1. JRBrown


    Jun 21, 2000
    North Carolina
    I'm posting this because a few players were interested in the outcome.

    Preamble: I bought/sold a sweet Sadowsky PJ-5. I liked it so much, I bought a Sadowsky JJ-4 with hopes of having it converted to a PJ-4. I also wanted to be able to switch between a JJ and PJ by changing out the neck pup and pickguard. A week ago, I coordinated the above and sent the bass to the Sawdosky shop for conversion.

    Result: Today, I got a call today from the Sadowsky shop informing that converting a JJ to a PJ is not practical as initially thought. The problem is that the JJ pickguard is smaller than the PJ pickguard and the electronics control plates are at different angles. Unfortunately, to preceed with the conversion would mean one or more of the following:
    - Altering the position of the P-pup (moving it closer towards the neck) Hence altering the tone.
    - Permanently converting to a PJ or reverse PJ.
    - Perform major sugery on the bass (rerouting the control cavity, filling holes, etc.)

    I decided to stop the conversion. It's easy to convert a PJ to a JJ but not the other way around. The larger PJ pickguard can accommodate a J-pup in its proper location but the smaller JJ pickguard won't accommodate the P-pup in the normal P location. Furthermore, to install a PJ pickguard on a JJ bass requires having the control plate moved...ouch! Seeing as how the bass was already on the Sadowsky bench and to make the shipping and time/effort spent somewhat justified, I opted to have the vintage tone control installed instead. Not the same, but oh well.

    Man...this is like letting the air out of both front tires. :bawl:

    So the search for a PJ-4 continues. (Now what am I going to do with two JJs :meh: ;).)

    Attached Files:

  2. jja412

    jja412 Tired. Supporting Member

    Feb 2, 2004
    St. Louis
    Send one to me for safe keeping.... ;)
  3. Johnny Fila

    Johnny Fila Formerly "The Crusader" Supporting Member

    Nov 21, 2004
    Elmont, NY (near NYC)
    Hey for what it's worth, I love the P/J combo myself. Why not build one yourself with Sadowsky electronics, Warmoth body, USA CUSTOM neck? thats what I've been doing.
  4. JRBrown


    Jun 21, 2000
    North Carolina
    I will if you prepay the absurdly high shipping and handling fee. ;)
  5. You could get Nino to build you a PJ-4 from warmoth parts...

    Keep the JJ-4, too. It's a Sadowsky and that combination is highly desireable, so it will always have a great resale value.
  6. JRBrown


    Jun 21, 2000
    North Carolina
    I thought about a warmoth bass. I did contact Nino and others about building me thier brand PJ. There were some design and time restrictions that prevented the go-ahead.

    It is indeed a very good bass. I just wish I had known this sooner, and not because of the shipping fees. It's a combination of the anticipation, time invested, fees, hopes and dreams (both present and future). The thing that hurts the most is, everyone knows that big women like dudes with PJs, and I made promises that I won't be able to keep. I dread the hour when I open up the case and they see a JJ in lieu of a PJ. :eek: :help:
  7. bikeplate

    bikeplate Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2001
    Upstate NY

    Play them both and love them to death. I have 3 JJ Sadowsky's and alternate between them. HEAVEN!!!

  8. Johnny Fila

    Johnny Fila Formerly "The Crusader" Supporting Member

    Nov 21, 2004
    Elmont, NY (near NYC)
  9. I love my Warmoth PJ 4 string. The PJ setup is the best of both worlds. My favorite setting is with both pickups on full. Mine has a black korina body, maple neck, ebony fretboard and Basslines active pickups. Here's a photo:[​IMG][/IMG]
  10. rusty


    Mar 29, 2004
    My sadowsky p/j 4 has routings for a j/j config :p It was ordered that way :D
  11. JRBrown


    Jun 21, 2000
    North Carolina
    There you are! You, you, blah, blah, blah. This is all your fault! :mad: :spit: :ninja:


    Just kidding man. However, I did get the idea from you.
  12. JRBrown


    Jun 21, 2000
    North Carolina
    This was always an option when I bought the bass. Actually, it's the first and last option when I buy any bass. I am always prepared to keep it if need be.
  13. drgregn

    drgregn Granddude Supporting Member

    May 13, 2002
    Denton, TX
    Still lovin' the PJ5 you sent my way, bro (see avatar). Very Sweet! thanks again...
  14. bwbass


    May 6, 2002
    How about one with a trem? (On the right ^ ) :)
  15. Big String

    Big String Supporting Member

    Apr 22, 2000
    Northwest Indiana
    Sorry to hear bout that. I just sent in my recently aquired (used) Sad vintage 4 they should receive it today. It needs some work... :meh: I love my PJ and now I have JJ too and I believe I will be very happy with these two basses. I say sell one and get what you want.
  16. Joelc73


    Nov 13, 2000
    New York
    And Greg I'm diggin' the one that you sent me! The PJ5 is the perfect gig bass because it has a huge bottom-end but also does the bridge pick-up J thing that I love. Thanks again!
  17. mgmadian


    Feb 4, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Not sure I understand. If they could "convert it permanently to a PJ or reverse PJ", why couldn't they convert it to a PJ with a J-route under the guard? Sounds like it would entail:

    (i) route the P in their standard front position
    (ii) re-orient the control plate into the PJ-position (possibly require filling/covering any holes left exposed from its original position)
    (iii) provide one (larger) PJ-style guard with a P-route
    (iv) provide another (larger) PJ-style guard with a J-route

    Unless... they couldn't just re-orient the control plate without re-routing the control cavity. That the case?

    EDIT: come to think of it, sounds like that must be the case... can't shift around the same control plate and expect it to cover the same hole... :meh:
  18. drgregn

    drgregn Granddude Supporting Member

    May 13, 2002
    Denton, TX
    Cool - everybody's happy!

  19. JRBrown


    Jun 21, 2000
    North Carolina
    You're 100% correct. All of the above. Parts and labor would be very high. Project will be no longer practical.
  20. JRBrown


    Jun 21, 2000
    North Carolina
    I received the bass from the Sadowky shop yesterday. No P-pup installed but now its got the VTC option (not needed but nice to have). Roger did a great setup, included some polish, new strings and other bennies ;) to help ease the PJ-less pain. I'm feeling much better all ready. :)

    Today's pic:

    Attached Files:

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    Primary TB Assistant

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