Looking great Rob, can't wait to see where you go with this one as the piezo idea is something I've been thinking about for a future build too (using a TLB-4 kit so not too dissimilar).
Build #1 - TL-1 "Telemaster" - Completed (GOTM October 2016)
Build #2 - The "Maplecaster" scratch build - Completed
Build #3 - JB-4 "Bass IV" - Completed (co-winner GOTM January 2017)
Build #4 - ST-1M "Surfcaster" - Completed (GOTM April 2017)
Build #5 - N1M "Semi-scratch" - Underway
The Cavan Project
Have been thinking about a 5 string P or J Bass as a project since I started looking here recently..... But wasn't sure if there was a possibility to get a 4+1 neck made... You have answered all my questions (prayers) and got me very excited indeed.
The headstock shape you have here is also a bit like that used on the Tune basses... I'm a bit of fan of the traditional F style personally.....
Whats the plans for body finish??
Definitely going to be following this build....
It's not going to be easy to make a truss-rod cover as the headstock's quite curved at that point (unless it was a very thick one that had enough depth to incorporate a curve). You don't want to flatten the curve of the headstock as this would thin the neck at a structurally weak point. So I'd have thought that you just run the veneer up to the nut and cover up the gap that way. You wouldn't want to stop the veneer short of the nut as you'd have an obvious line.
There should be some scrap left over from the bit of rose wood that was removed that you could use it in front of the 'Adjust-A-Nut' to cover the exposed truss rod channel.
Loads of options!
A question for the brains trust ...
Has anyone had experience with playing around with the orientation and placement of the split pickup on a P-Bass?
I'm thinking that I have the opportunity to experiment with how the pickups are positioned, since I haven't actually routed the body yet.
I've read that swapping the pickups around gives you a warmer top end and a tighter bottom end, but wondering how true that is ...
What do you think?
... any advice/wisdom would be very welcome!
Below are a couple of examples I've found ...
Most of the early MIJ Yamaha BB bass's have the reversed P setup, and they are quite highly regarded (esp.up to about '85) - I've got an old '79 BB800 with this layout and it sounds so very very right (shame my playing doesn;t do it justice but anyway).
Apparently having the p/up closer to the bridge improves the treble response and visa versa so having the E/A string pickup closer to the bridge than the D/G one evens out the sound across all 4 strings.
Whether any of this actually makes any real difference to the noise you make who knows - but the reversed P setup certainly doesn;t hurt things
Certainly with a 5-string, reversing their relative positions should have the beneficial effect of making the bottom B string less woolly sounding.
I ended up getting a thin piece of maple veneer to cover the whole area and then sandwiched it with some foam packing material between the clamps to force it to follow the shape of the headstock.
It worked pretty well, although there was a small split in the veneer, which I filled with TimberMate.
Now for the sanding and finishing part ...