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I was thinking of getting a new camping cooler. I looked at the Yeti looked small and very expensive. I borrowed a friend's Pelican cooler, it was a little bigger and cheaper than a yeti. Looking for other options and experience with them. thank you
 

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What do you plan on using the cooler for? And how long do you need the ice to last? How much are going to put in it? Those are what I ask myself and look at the specs from that perspective and not the name. A lot of them are just fancy names that are status symbols and overkill for taking drinks for a day. I have a coleman extreme that keeps ice for 5 days fine.
 

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coleman xtreme here also, brought back a elk from Idaho in mine couple yrs ago, 37 hrs still frozen, got a 120 quart from walmart, we took it on vacation last week, Ice stayed good for 4 days . ( but I pre chilled it the night before )
 

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Great information and logic used. I have some cheap cooler that is horrible - leave here and by the time I get to the campground 3 hours later, I've lost half of the ice. I started looking at the Yeti knockoffs, and even they are spendy. Then I saw this post and started thinking, how long do I really need to keep something cold? The Coleman Extreme seems to fit that nice niche - works well AND doesn't break the bank. Good information, thanks for sharing!
 

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I have a Coleman extreme 100 qt and a 150 qt. The trick in keeping ice from melting is to put cold contents into a cold cooler. When I go to SC to hunt hogs my cooler sits in the walk in cooler with the lid open from the day I arrive to the day I leave. The meat hangs in the walk-in for 2 or three days and is quartered when we leave. We put about 3 inches of ice on the bottom of the cold chests, then the meat, usually two hogs, then fill the rest of the space with ice and close the lid. When I get to the butcher shop about 13 hours later there probably isn't more than a cup of water in the ice chest. When I killed my Bison in MO the animal was gutted immediately and hung in a walk-in for two days, then butchered and vacume packed and quick frozen. The coolers sat in the walk in freezer from the time the animals went into the walk-in cooler until the butchered and frozen meat was put into the cooler. It is a long drive, about 17 hours with food and fuel stop. When I got home it was as though the meat had just been put in the cooler. The Coleman extreme does all I will ever ask of an ice chest.
 

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I have too many coolers. I have 4 giant ones we used to haul cut, wrapped, frozen elk and muley home from our western hunts. Probably another 1/2 dozen smaller ones in the garage also. None are premium style coolers.

I’m looking for an old school metal Coleman ( 1960-70) style to replace my fish box on my boat. It’s currently held together with JB Weld and duct tape. It’s always a conversation starter when someone goes fishing with me. Folks have asked to make donations to buy a new one. The one I’m using now I bought new in 1977 to take to Canada. There’s been thousands of pounds of fish in that box in the last 40 years, but it’s time for a new one.

When I go fishing, I put 3 one gallon blocks of ice in my fish cooler. Big blocks of ice hold a lot better than bags of ice. Plus it’s free, as I freeze them at home.
 

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I have a Coleman extreme 100 qt and a 150 qt. The trick in keeping ice from melting is to put cold contents into a cold cooler. When I go to SC to hunt hogs my cooler sits in the walk in cooler with the lid open from the day I arrive to the day I leave. The meat hangs in the walk-in for 2 or three days and is quartered when we leave. We put about 3 inches of ice on the bottom of the cold chests, then the meat, usually two hogs, then fill the rest of the space with ice and close the lid. When I get to the butcher shop about 13 hours later there probably isn't more than a cup of water in the ice chest. When I killed my Bison in MO the animal was gutted immediately and hung in a walk-in for two days, then butchered and vacume packed and quick frozen. The coolers sat in the walk in freezer from the time the animals went into the walk-in cooler until the butchered and frozen meat was put into the cooler. It is a long drive, about 17 hours with food and fuel stop. When I got home it was as though the meat had just been put in the cooler. The Coleman extreme does all I will ever ask of an ice chest.
And another note. A cooler works just as good as a heater too. I will put pulled pork or brisket that comes off a smoker inside wrapped in foil with a blanket and 8 hours later its still plenty hot. Take note, your wife is usually hotter if you use one of her blankets that now smells like brisket though.
 

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Coleman extreme covers all my needs also. Couple days is the max I need, pre-cool, manage your ice properly. Metal hinges, easy to clean, don't feel bad beating it up cause I paid $50 for it. I mostly use coolers for fish, summer beverages, and rarely toting around red meat.

Those rotomolded coolers are insanely heavy. I don't really see the incremental gain in insulation worth that tradeoff alone, not to mention the price considerations.
 

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And another note. A cooler works just as good as a heater too. I will put pulled pork or brisket that comes off a smoker inside wrapped in foil with a blanket and 8 hours later its still plenty hot. Take note, your wife is usually hotter if you use one of her blankets that now smells like brisket though.
I wrap my pork butts in foil then in a heavy beach towel and stick it in a smaller Coleman cooler and let it sit for several hours. When I get it out to pull the pork it is still too hot to touch and the juice will burn you,
 

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Another vote for the Coleman Extreme series.
When my marine series Igloos finally became unserviceable, they all got replaced with the Colemans, largely due to Igloo going cheap on their recent designs (no more true hinges, weak handles, etc.)
I keep "slabs" of ice (made by filling dishpans and placing in a deep freeze, then bagging) in a 72Qt extreme during the hunt, packed full as possible, topped off with some doubled up quarts and gallon ziplocks frozen as ice "sleeves", . Almost zero melt after 3 days.
Boned or quartered deer go into 120qt Extreme. Slabs of ice line the bottom, then a "rack" I made from 1/2" pvc to keep the meat off the ice, then the quarters, backstraps, and bagged trimmings, separately bagged hearts (if salvageable) and tenderloins. Cover with the "sleeves" of ice and it keeps on the perpetually shaded back porch while I do the packaging over the next few nights at home.
Even after 4 days back at home, there's usually about 75% of the ice left, most of which I can rinse, if needed, and pop back into the deep freeze for a head start on the next trip's ice load.
 

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Vote for coleman extreme also. Great bang for the buck, but sooner or later the hinges will fail, the drain plug beaks off and the walls separate around the lid. Go buy another as you got your monies worth by this time.

Engle has served me well if you want to enter that price range (yeti copied their design but cost more $). All my "big" coolers are coleman extreme due to cost.

Cooler tips:
Take a piece of bubblewrap silver insulation cut to the inside size of the cooler and as you use the contents the insulation goes lower as the cooler empties and cuts done on keeping air space cold. Folks with too much time on their hands have done studies on the big temp difference between the top and bottom of a cooler.

Keep a damp white towel over the top of your cooler.

Only open your cooler early in the morning and transfer drinks, lunch, and frozen dinner entree to thaw\serve as ice into a "day cooler" and do something similar getting out drinks and produce for the evening when you get to camp. A cooler only opened twice a day keeps ice waaayyy longer.

Take an extra cooler and dedicate it for ice or frozen food only and don't open it until you need to restock ice (add dry ice if you want to deal with it).

I try to buy as little ice as possible. Frozen water bottles from home are less messy and can be used for drinking water. Refreeze the unused ones when you get home.

If you really want to go "extreme" place your cooler in a chest freezer filled with frozen vacuum sealed food. SLOWLY over the course of a week add thin layers of water to the cooler until the food is covered and encased in ice.

Keeping people out of your cooler every few minutes for their next drink or snack is more than half the battle of keeping things cold longer.
 

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Hard to be the Coleman Xtreme Marine Pro Coolers!!
I think we had this conversation before. Isn't there a difference in some of the Xtreme coolers. I know I had one that the lid warped and I think someone else did. Turns out they were a different model than what some others have that rave about them.


Personally I know have the RTIC coolers. I bought a couple when they settled a lawsuit from Yeti and had a big sale. They have served me well.
 

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The marine have UV treated plastic and some have stainless steel hardware but some have plastic hardware.
 

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Most cheap coolers have hollow lids. Open lid,drill 2 holes and fill with spray foam.Turns any cooler into a great cooler.
 
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