yesterday I passed the SCJP 5.0 exam with 77%.
Here is how I prepared:
1. I read the excellent KB book and did the self tests. That took me about two weeks, studying almost every day including weekends.
2. I did some of the mock exams from http://faq.javaranch.com/java/ScjpFaq#mocks
and depending on the exam results I reread some chapters from the KB book and wrote little programs in order to understand things better, which took me another two weeks.
In taking the mock exams I realized that I couldn't get through the whole exam answering every question, because I am too slow: after about three hours there still were about 10 out of 72 questions unanswered. So I couldn't do the multi-pass-go-through described in the KB book on page XXXVII. I did it this way in the real exam: trying to answer every short question first, marking the ones I am unsure and leaving off the long ones; then answering the long questions and afterwards reviewing the marked questions.
The questions in the real exam were easier than in some mock exams, so I managed to go through all 72 questions.
I wish all of you who will take the exam good luck and don't give up.