Frankencooler Versus The Competition

There are an increasing number of ice-fueled coolers on the market, ranging from crappy eBay ice chests with fans blowing into them, ice chests with a giant duct snaking through them with a blower on the end, to sleek, stylish, purpose-built units from companies like Icy Breeze.

Most of these things either perform poorly or go through ice exceedingly fast. The fancy units feature tiny fans, single heat exchangers, and still go through ice quickly because incoming hot airflow is not segregated from ice/water storage.

My designs all feature multiple heat exchangers, robust, premium marine blowers, marine pumps, infinite speed digital blower controllers, and total separation of hot incoming air from the ice/water storage. My batteries are the finest lithium iron phosphate power cells for the money available anywhere, also.

The result is my units simply work – average temperature differentials for my Blowbox models are 50-degrees in triple-digits, whereas my competitors strive for 30.

The negative aspect is they are pricey, no thanks to me using premium products and having to pay retail for most components. I could make them cheaper and sell more but I value satisfied customers over dollars. I am comfortably retired and do not do this to survive, but because I enjoy it.

Over the last two years, more than half of my sales have been to pilots and aircraft owners, including some commercial airlines. This has been from word-of-mouth, as I do not advertise. My units are popular with private investigators who spend hours parked in their cars, pet delivery services that use my units for backup or augmentation in their vans, fishing boats, classic car owners, and of course, families taking part in leisure activities and sporting events.

After 4 years, my products are still ugly (it’s hard to make a Frankenstein mishmash of parts look good), but still out-perform any other ice-fueled cooler on the planet, regardless of price 🙂

 

 

Frankencooler in 2022

As with seemingly everything else, most of my suppliers have raised their prices. In order to minimize having to raise mine, for the last two months, I have been ordering large quantities of things like blowers, heat exchangers, motor controllers, and cases. 

On another note, unfortunately, I am going to start requiring signatures for UPS deliveries on high-dollar items because of the increasing number of porch thefts.

Also, in response to a few customer complaints I’ve received concerning PayPal checkout, I have switched my online credit card processing to Stripe – a more secure and better payment experience for everyone.

As many of you are aware, I am an old guy with a bad back. My ability to stand for hours building completed units is diminishing so I will not be doing many this year – sorry.

 

 

Custom Aircraft Cooler

I wanted to share the excellent handiwork of my friend and neighbor, Yasutaka (Taka) who owns and pilots a Cessna 182.

Summers in Phoenix are torturous for pilots, and Taka wanted something that would provide short-term cooling for ground/taxi to altitude.

Starting with the Blowbox blower/heat exchangers engine, he engineered and fabricated a lightweight console that would fit between the seats of his plane and provide cold air streams via eyeball vents for front as well as rear passengers. This console also incorporates drink holders as well as Blowbox on/off switch, stepless blower speed controller, and digital temperature and voltage readouts. Taka also built a custom lightweight remote ice chest that sits in the rear baggage area.

A description of this build with parts links is here