Frankencooler: What It Does And What It Doesn’t Do

An individual representing himself as a “refrigeration mechanic” commented on one of my dumb YouTube videos today with “the factual information to dispel any notion as to the effectiveness of such a device” (my Frankencooler). He goes on to describe what constitutes a ton of cooling, BTUs, etc. and ends with the definitive proclamation, “So the cooling ability of this device is limited to a fraction of the amount needed to cool a 400 sq foot area. SO IT WON’T WORK!!!!” *ahem*

Okay, so I don’t know who told this guy that this (or any small, portable ice-fueled device) is designed to cool a 400 sq. ft. room,  but the hundreds of people who follow this site and the countless dozens who have personally communicated with me know it certainly wasn’t me. Nearly every day I discourage people from building this or any small, ice-fueled chiller for cooling entire rooms or anyplace with access to 110V current. This is not a house air conditioner!

What this cooler does do is send two powerful streams of cold air (minimum 30-degree cooler) to the immediate area for an extended period of time, using no external power source.

I comfortably work in my 115-degree garage next to a battered, well-used Frankencooler that’s gone through more ice than the Titanic, and a bunch of us will tailgate on an asphalt parking lot in 105+ temps in the upcoming weeks in front of two Frankencoolers at the University of Phoenix Stadium. People use these to keep cool at their kids’ soccer and football practices, on fishing and camping trips, or sitting on the patio. This is what a Frankencooler does, and it absolutely works.


Ultimate Frankencooler



My Frankencooler design taken to the next level with the finest all-copper radiators I could find, a massive lithium iron phosphate power cell, better insulation, and revised plumbing.

But does spending twice as much money equate to dramatically better performance?

At least as far as the radiators go, not really. My original design’s lightweight and affordable components cool nearly the same for many hundreds of dollars less.

Nevertheless, this cooler incorporates some significant improvements and my Frankencooler Build Plans have been updated to reflect some of these changes.

Ice Chest Air Conditioners – What Works And What Doesn’t

Introducing Frankencooler


  • Patent pending design
  • Totally self-contained and portable – no external power needed
  • 18-volt lithium-ion battery w/state-of-charge indicator
  • Two flexible cold air ducts
  • Three individual water to air heat exchangers
  • Twin high-pressure fans
  • Infinitely variable fan speed control
  • Marine pump – underdriven for durability and power savings
  • Cooling ice and water insulated from incoming air for maximum cooling duration
  • Coleman cooler features wheels, pull handle and drain valve
  • Average run time at optimum 50% fan speed: 1.5 – 1.75 hrs.
  • 30º – 55° temperature differential (incoming to outgoing air)
  • Additional batteries available for under $40
  • Hideous looks, awesome performance – proven in the desert by Arizona Cardinals tailgaters

Build your own Frankencooler – plans and parts are now available HERE