How to pull grill from Hartke Hydrive 115c

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Blue Dragon, Oct 3, 2016.

  1. Blue Dragon

    Blue Dragon

    Jan 4, 2016
    This is my main gig amp, bought used though and speaker was replaced by previous owner:

    I need to open the cab to check the speaker. Steel grill has one obvious screw on the front. I pulled that but still can't get the grill to budge. Anyone know how to pull it? (More muscle may be all it needs, but I'd sure like to be sure first!)

    Tale of Woe summary:
    The input jack went south. Pulled the 'head' out of it so last week it was just the speaker. (Has speaker cable coming from the cab to the 'head' so it can be pulled easily, but cable very short). Last week my drummer loaned me a GK head to use till the normal one gets fixed. Cable barely reached. In fact, I think it didn't reach. Now I have no sound from speaker. Pretty sure I pulled the cord too far and disconnected the speaker. Hopefully just needs to be reconnected or resoldered.

    Regret my compliments to Hartke CS:
    I posted a complement to Hartke as they're sending the replacement jack free of charge. Now I take that back. I wrote them asking how to pull the grill. Their response "we don't recommend DIY, bring it in, blah, blah, blah". The thing cost me $250 and has already had the speaker replaced. I'm not likely to bring it in to their service center. But I've been unable to find any hardcore specs or diagrams on it. Hoping someone here will know the secret sauce. (Vasoline?)
  2. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    am NOT suggesting you simply yank on it harder. But I used to own an Ampeg fridge that had CRAZY good Velcro on it. I had to pull that thing so hard I thought I was going to break the frame of the grill cloth. And once I got the top Velcro to release I wasn't done. I had to keep pulling hard to get the second and third rows of Velcro to let go.
    Blue Dragon likes this.
  3. Gluvhand

    Gluvhand Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2014
    Rockland County, NY
    Yanking on it harder may just bend it. You have to pry it off. On the Hydrive cabinets there are 5 or 6 screws and the grill easily lifts off. On the combo, the one screw is just there to keep the grill off the face of the speaker.
    Blue Dragon likes this.
  4. Blue Dragon

    Blue Dragon

    Jan 4, 2016
    Thanks both! Yeah, I saw this thread where a guy had removed them and painted them on standalone cabinets.

    Hartke HyDrive make-over

    However, you can see the four corner screws in the original pic alongside the standoff screw which doesn't match my combo. Crowbar time! Woohoo! (my techie guitar player thinks he has a tool for such things actually). Well, when I get it off I'll at least post what I found for others. Maybe with pictures of a (hopefully not bent) grill!
  5. Blue Dragon

    Blue Dragon

    Jan 4, 2016
    So last night me and my tech/guitar player laid into the amp and fortunately he was smarter than me and brought a simple flashlight! The grill on the Hartke Hydrive 115c model is held on by 6 screws behind the grill, accessible through the grill holes. Prying would have been a disaster! There's also the obvious screw but that is just to secure a standoff to keep the grill from being able to hit the speaker even under impact. So more like 7 screws altogether.

    I'd taken some pictures, but found these by someone selling a similar amp at Reverb that are better than mine anyway.

    First, here's the amp in standard position.


    It's a bit hard to see due to the angle, but it is designed for 'kickback' operation. (Though don't call it a Hartke Kickback as that's a different amp altogether apparently!)

    He's got a particularly good closeup image I'm including here for anyone in my situation to come. The image is intended to show a closeup of the Hydrive logo, but it also catches a good view of one of the screws. My location was much darker and it was simply not possible to see this without a flashlight. But wise application of a flashlight and a magnetic screwdriver and we had the grill off in no time.

    nc5js4xioknlmqp1lyta (1).png

    So that's it. To remove the grill on one of these, obviously remove the standoff screw that's easy to see, but also remove these that are inside the grill. Black on black so they're hard to see without a flashlight unless you've some good strong lighting or outside. Use a magnetic screwdriver - this cabinet IS ported at the bottom so those screws could go inside if you're not careful.

    In my case, the previous owner had replaced the original Hartke speaker with an Eminence Legend 4ohm, but it sounds great. Turns out I had pulled the cable off the speaker. Cable is held on via standard speaker tabs, not soldered. Separate wires go to the crossover to the horn so the cable coming out to the amp on top does go directly to the speaker. We put a knot in the cable up near where it exits the cabinet to the head so it shouldn't be possible to do that again. Of course that makes the cable even shorter, but when powered from the combo's head it's still enough.

    All in all yesterday was a very happy day for me! My amp jack (original problem) is now fixed with a free replacement from Hartke.
    Gluvhand likes this.
  6. Gluvhand

    Gluvhand Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2014
    Rockland County, NY
    Excellent. Very glad you worked it out. I actually prefer the way the 115 grill is fastened to the way the 112 is.

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