How to class up a $20 Coleman cooler

Ginseng

Banned
Some of you might be familiar with my favored cigar storage system, the humble Coleman cooler. These things are only so-so as far as cold storage of food, but as functional and cost effective cigar storage, they are without peer. I have been buying these for years and they can be found for between $18-$25 depending on whether you buy on or off-season for this type of gear. I have gotten most of mine from Dick's Sporting Goods or the local Safeway supermarket.
(IMG:http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h73/Gins...CoolerPic01.jpg)

For box storage, these thrifty coolers are light, tight, and sized just about right. My personal favorites are the 50qt and 48qt units. The 48 is pictured below.
(IMG:http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h73/Gins...bleCooler01.jpg)

However, when storing loose sticks, you'd have to find some empty boxes to hold them. Picking over the local B&M or reusing boxes you've emptied works fine, but you're left with the sometimes frustrating exercise of "humidor Tetris®." Well, in anticipation of some custom bundles, I decided that this solution was lacking just a bit of flair. And so I decided to give our resident woodworking artist, Handyman Dave a ringy-dingy. A few PM's back and forth, a few week's time and bam! What do we have here?
(IMG:http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h73/Gins...bleCooler02.jpg)

That's right, voila! A set of three interlocking cigar trays sized to custom fit a Coleman 48qt cooler. The sides and bottoms are made from 1/4" Spanish Cedar plywood as are the movable dividers.
(IMG:http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h73/Gins...bleCooler03.jpg)

The bottoms have interlocking cleats (I think that's the term) to keep the trays in perfect alignment. The bottoms have 1/4" slots for circulation and the sides have 1/2" slots for handholds. I had the trays sized so that I could place containers with my homemade silica kitty litter humidification crystals in containers on both sides. More likely, I'll stick boxes there. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/rolleyes.gif)
(IMG:http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h73/Gins...bleCooler04.jpg)

And here's a shot from the top showing to show off my new trays.
(IMG:http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h73/Gins...bleCooler05.jpg)

Thank you, Dave for accepting my commission! These trays are gorgeous, smell great, and will be the perfect storage system for some very pampered cigars. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/wub.gif)

Wilkey
 

TugBoat

New Member
Very cool!

Dave, great job! You manage to make even cigar trays look cool.

Wilkey, I knew you had a number of coolers but I had no idea there were this many.
 

Dsav101

Women it seems are the antichrist.
Wilkey, Awesome collection of coolers bro. :) You are now my hero! lol

Dave, unbelievable yet again. You the man!!! Let's HERF!

Don
 

sinnyc

Tibi ipsi esto fidelis.
lol that is outstanding Wilkey. I've seen shots of your Wall of Cool (very impressive by the way) before but those trays are just fantastic.
 

MocoBird

Crusty Cigar Curmudgeon
Very nice and an excellent idea! :thumbs:
But what inquiring minds really want is pictures of the insides of all those coolers!! :whistling:
 

lovetheleaf

New Member
I was looking at Dave's website yesterday. The man makes incredible things out of wood. Very nice trays, great idea.
 

Ginseng

Banned
Are all those coolers for cigars!! Holy @#$% brother if they are LOL!!
Yes. Yes they are. The new empty one isn't in that "wall of blue and white" photo though.


Very nice and an excellent idea! :thumbs:
But what inquiring minds really want is pictures of the insides of all those coolers!! :whistling:
I'm much too embarrassed by the messy state of the insides of those coolers. They're not pretty...but they are full. :D


I was looking at Dave's website yesterday. The man makes incredible things out of wood. Very nice trays, great idea.
He does indeed. Here's Dave's website. It wasn't working when I grabbed the link but I hope that's just because guys are checking him out. :)


Wilkey, those trays look awfully empty. :sign:
LOL. That's why I took a picture so that in the future I could remember what they looked like when they were empty. :laugh:


Wilkey, is blue your favorite color?
Well yes. Yes it is.

If any of you have been thinking about having Dave do some work for you, do so with confidence. He was a genuine pleasure to work with. A gentleman and a craftsman to the core.

Wilkey
 

Ginseng

Banned
The trays? For being fully custom, the set of three was less than the cost of a good box of cigars. IMO, based on the work involved, he could have charged me quite a bit more and I would still have been happy. If anyone is interested in something like this, you shouldn't hesitate to drop Dave a PM. He was a gentleman and a craftsman to deal with. A real pleasure of an experience.

Wilkey
 

BlindedByScience

Proud Father of a brave U.S. Marine
When you asked "How to class up a $20 Coleman cooler" I figured the answer would have been "...fill it up with EL's and Opus Maduros...."..... :laugh:

But, your answer was pretty cool as well..... :thumbs:

Nicely done my friend, nicely done.

Cheers - B.B.S.
 

Kingantz

Growing too fast.
So most of us get to do tetris with cigar boxes. Wilkey gets to do tetris with coolers full of cigar boxes. :laugh:

Very nice trays! Great job Dave and great of Wilkey to have them made!
 

Nimrod

Time to rethink my everything
Nice job on the racks and cooler.
I do like the space you put between cooler and racks so one can place the beads.

My solution right now for singles is the .99 cent store plastic containers.
They do not stack very well, but the sticks are somewhat protected from moving around and handling.

I have seen people post buying coolers from internet sales.
Personally, I believe this is a bad idea.
One needs to see how good the seal is before buying it.
I went to my local Wal-mart and tested about a half dozen of coolers to see if the lid was tight before finding one worthy.
Most of them had lids that flopped on without any pressure.
 

Ginseng

Banned
One needs to see how good the seal is before buying it.
I went to my local Wal-mart and tested about a half dozen of coolers to see if the lid was tight before finding one worthy.
Most of them had lids that flopped on without any pressure.
Indeed. That's why I love these Colemans. Well made. Made in America. :)

These coolers hold humidity for months on end without needing any adjustment whatsoever. I probably touch up the silica about 3 or 4 times a year on average for the deep storage coolers. The ones that are frequently opened get a spritz maybe once a month.

In general, I'm less impressed with the quality of Igloo coolers.

Wilkey
 
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