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Cowboy Ice Chest/Cooler

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Project by ringosmills posted 12-31-2010 10:57 PM 6429 views 7 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a cowboy ice chest or cooler. It is made with recycled wood from a deck. I made two of these one for our front porch and one for our back. Because we never know where people will end up sitting.

The handles are old horse shoes that came off our horses. I bent them up on the metal vise. The bottle opener was kinda difficult to find at first, but then found some on ebay. We were wanting a western theme with them.

I didn’t insulate the inside. I decided it would be TOO hard to clean out if i lined it with insulation and metal. So I just bought some of those Rubbermaid totes that you store stuff in. I can lift them in and out to clean them. And they are waterproof. Ice seems to stay just fine in them. Plus they have a lid that’s under the wooden lid on the cooler. Thanks for looking.

-- Nate- Bryan, Ohio





11 comments so far

View Jonathan's profile

Jonathan

2605 posts in 1773 days


#1 posted 01-01-2011 12:09 AM

Great little cooler here Nate. I like your personal touches as well to make it your own.

I know people sometimes put ice coolers inside that they can lift out to clean (and sometimes drain, if they haven’t included a drain spout). With that being said, has anyone lined one of these with the stiff foam insulation, then maybe added either a removable insert, or a permanent insert that can be cleaned, such as a metal liner, and of course included a drain spout?

I suppose you could also add insulation pretty easily by building a double wall of wood, with a gap between the walls, then use spray foam insulation, let it dry, trim back the top, then add a face frame, or lip over the insulation, then maybe add a metal liner?

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

View Mike's profile

Mike

391 posts in 2339 days


#2 posted 01-01-2011 12:51 AM

I think Jonathan is thinking too much…. )

Just build it to fit an already exiting cooler.

-- Measure once cut twice....oh wait....ooops.

View rivergirl's profile

rivergirl

3198 posts in 1560 days


#3 posted 01-01-2011 01:24 AM

Thanks so much for posting this for me! Love the horse shoe handles! Care to share the dimensions of this cowboy ice chest? :) I have a bunch of used 5/4 just begging to become an ice chest.

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View Jonathan's profile

Jonathan

2605 posts in 1773 days


#4 posted 01-01-2011 02:44 AM

I’m the type of person that just can’t leave things be and am always trying to figure out how to change things to fit my own personal design preferences, or to think up something entirely new. Not sure if it’s a blessing, or a curse… Sometimes I wonder? :-)

-- Jonathan, Denver, CO "Constructive criticism is welcome and valued as it gives me new perspectives and helps me to advance as a woodworker."

View WoodenFrog's profile

WoodenFrog

2737 posts in 1635 days


#5 posted 01-01-2011 06:44 AM

Oh wow thats really nice you scored big!

-- Robert B. Sabina, Ohio..... http://www.etsy.com/shop/WoodenfrogWoodenProd

View rivergirl's profile

rivergirl

3198 posts in 1560 days


#6 posted 01-01-2011 11:12 AM

Any chance you could take a pic of the inside of the chest?

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

15983 posts in 1589 days


#7 posted 01-01-2011 04:32 PM

This is very nice and useful and I don’t think that I’ve ever seen one like it.

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View Chelios's profile

Chelios

567 posts in 1788 days


#8 posted 01-01-2011 04:47 PM

I want one of these too! this is a great project for me deck this year. Thanks for posting

View natrous's profile

natrous

65 posts in 1506 days


#9 posted 01-02-2011 03:22 AM

Favorited.

How will I decide what outdoor projects to build this summer if you guys keep posting such cool ideas?

-- I do not like work even when someone else does it. - Mark Twain

View rivergirl's profile

rivergirl

3198 posts in 1560 days


#10 posted 01-02-2011 01:44 PM

Natrous- build them all. That’s what summer is for. :)

-- Homer : "Oh, and how is education supposed to make me feel smarter? Besides, every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out of my brain."

View Vjer's profile

Vjer

77 posts in 2480 days


#11 posted 01-03-2011 06:49 AM

I have been making these kind of coolers for over a year now. I use a cheap Igloo 48qt cooler which is wrapped with 3/4” blue Dow foam board. That fits inside a 1/2” a/c fir plywood carcass. I have used old cedar fencing, corragated sheet metal, new cedar fence boards and other items to cover the exterior. Let your imagination run away with it.I have a 1 1/2” drain with which I can place a plug or valve to drain the cooler. The folks that have gotten these coolers tell me that their favorite adult beverage and ice will last up to 4 days. I also use horse shoes for the lid handle. I don’t place handles on the side since the units are usually placed in one spot and left there. In using the western red cedar covering, the patena will change to a nice silvery grey color when left in the sun.

-- My mind is like lightning...one brilliant flash and then it's gone.

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