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FDP Forum / Fender Amps: 1985 - Current / Hot Rod Deluxe III

Contributing Member

Vero Beach FL

Tbird Greg
Dec 1st, 2016 08:49 PM   Edit   Profile  

I decided I had to get back to a real tube amp, so I bought a HRD III. I decided to check all the cabinet screws for tightness and found that every one was slightly loose. I snugged them up 2-3 turns. I thought it was just poor QC that the screws were not tightened. But then I got to wondering if somehow the screws were designed to be somewhat less than tight. Any insight appreciated.

(This message was last edited by greg1948 at 09:03 AM, Dec 5th, 2016)

Contributing Member

So. Cal. USA

Dec 1st, 2016 08:54 PM   Edit   Profile  

All screws holding the chassis in place and holding the baffle board should be tight. Very snug but not overly tightened. Check the nuts holding the speaker too. Easy on the speaker. Don't want to warp the frame.

4-5 turns would mean you could remove them by hand and way too loose.


usa metro detroit

Dec 2nd, 2016 08:42 PM   Edit   Profile  

When I got my HRD III I had the same issue. I was preping it for gigging by playing it louder than my live settings, breaking in the speaker and checking it for rattles etc. I thought the 12p-80 speaker was farting out. Turned out it was just a speaker screw that needed to be tightend. The cage for the power tubes needed to be tightend also...

I thought "Uh oh...here we go" (thinking I was headed for trouble with the amp)

Yet... All has been good...after tightening the screws the amp has been a gigging tank..

Done some mods to the Drive channel and changed the speaker (I kinda feel using the amp for live playing which thats what this amp is intended for... I didn't have to do either, amp was fine as is)

(This message was last edited by pcalu at 10:49 PM, Dec 2nd, 2016)

Contributing Member

Vero Beach FL

Tbird Greg
Dec 5th, 2016 07:02 AM   Edit   Profile  

I sent off an email to Fender about this issue and I got a prompt response from a rep.

Nathan Jones (Fender)
Dec 5, 06:12 MST

Hi Greg,
It's hard to say exactly the torque settings of installed screws. As long as the screw head is flush against whatever its screwed into, you should be good to go. I don't think you hurt anything by tightening them.

I did snug the screws up on general principle to prevent any possible rattling. Kudos to Nathan at Fender for responding to my inquiry. But it still makes me wonder how the amp left the factory this way.



Why do I keep fixing things that work?
Dec 5th, 2016 08:59 AM   Edit   Profile  

I can understand that if the amplifier is stored for a while then maybe the drier air conditions may have caused the the wood to gradually shrink a little bit and enough to effectively cause for loose screws. This may be the likely culprit, but I am not making excuses for Fender, just trying to give a little insight into the cause! But the chassis to chassis mounted items, I think that those items should have been secured and this was an issue with mine also, 15 years ago! Hmmm!
I was new to this forum then and learned that this was not a singular issue and that many people who had bought the Blues Jr's were having the handle nuts coming loose and falling into the chassis and creating crazy electrical shorts and had damaged many amplifiers! Crazy, huh? True story.
My Hot Rod Deluxe had a lot of loose screws and the tubes were all catawampus in their sockets and this was really disturbing.
Well, it just goes to show you that, even though it is new, check it out completely and most of the future with your amp will have good integrity.

Contributing Member

Vero Beach FL

Tbird Greg
Dec 6th, 2016 05:28 PM   Edit   Profile  

Your idea of wood expansion/contraction may well be right on the money. Though I'm in Florida with pretty high humidity, who knows how many cycles of humidity/temperature changes this amp went through on it's way from Mexico.



lets take it apart
Dec 7th, 2016 11:36 AM   Edit   Profile  

Many years ago while riding a tour bus (converted Grayhound) if we didn't lock tite the nuts and screws on amps and guitars the vib from the motor and road would shake everything loose.

don't ride far anymore but still check that everything is glued fast when I first buy it

FDP Data Goon

We all want

our time in hell
Dec 7th, 2016 06:45 PM   Edit   Profile  

I checked on a whim the screws on my decade+ old HRD as I swapped in some backup tubes after a preamp went nasty last night.

Not loose at all.


usa metro detroit

Dec 8th, 2016 06:50 PM   Edit   Profile  

Yea once I did a 'once over" .... which everyone should do with every new or used amp they get. I've had no problems.

FDP Forum / Fender Amps: 1985 - Current / Hot Rod Deluxe III

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