Thursday, October 31, 2013

The YETI Coolers Tundra 35 Project

Recently I was contacted about reviewing a YETI Coolers Tundra 35.  This was good timing as I've been eying this size cooler for some time now since I figured it would be perfect to use in our kayaks, for other boat trips, and any time when the Roadie is just a bit to small.  Essentially I was looking for an excuse to get another YETI Cooler to have around and this worked out perfectly.  

Along with the Tundra 35, a package arrived from SmithFly with a Cooler Kilt and I also ordered a SeaDek top for the cooler as well.  I had plans to do three things with this cooler to properly outfit it.

1.  Flip latches around.
2.  Install the SeaDek top.
3.  Install the SmithFly Cooler Kilt.

Flipping the latches around on the Tundra 35 was easy.  Essentially all you need is a screwdriver to move the pin from the front side of the cooler lid, flip the latch, and then push the pin back into the cooler.  Do again to the other latch.   This YETI Coolers video was helpful walking me through this easy fix.

Installing the SeaDek was also quite easy and really is nothing more than applying a big sticker to your cooler top.  YETI Coolers also has a helpful video for this as well.

The Cooler Kilt is a soon to be released addition to the ever impressive offerings from SmithFly.  The Cooler Kilt will be available for 25 to 65 quart sized coolers and essentially creates a panel to then attach any of the pouches offered by SmithFly or other products that are MOLLE capable.

SmithFly is offering two ways to install snap attachments with both a self tapping screw with snap heads or 3M adhesive snap heads for those that are worried (wimps) about drilling holes in their premium priced cooler.

I'll be the first to admit that even though I asked SmithFly for the screw snap heads that I was a little bit nervous about messing up my cooler by drilling one of these screws in wrong but I followed the age old adage of measuring several times (and then several times again) to drill each just once.  I was glad that I only had to do it eight times and they all came out just about perfect.

Once all the snap heads were properly drilled in, the Cooler Kilt snapped into place, and was surprisingly secure.  I then went through my small assortment of SmithFly pouches and quickly decided that the 3X Pouch and the El Poquito were what would work best on that panel.

The Cooler Kilt with the addition of the 3X Pouch and El Poquito will put fly boxes, tools, and other accessories close at hand when on the water.

When the Cooler Kilt is not needed then it can be easily removed and the cooler can be used like normal.

Done and done.  The SmithFly Cooler Kilt is a very neat innovation and I think we'll see a lot of guides, who already use a YETI Cooler as a rowing seat or poling platform in their boat or raft, use this system to keep track of all the gear that they need close at hand.

I also foresee future pouch offerings from SmithFly which may have a real interest to hunters as well as anglers in the Cooler Kilt.

There may be future additions to this Tundra 35 but in the meantime it's time to fill this YETI with ice and a few brews.


The International Hobbyist said...

Unfortunately, I have absolutely no use for a cooler whatsoever but this thing is awesome.

Chuck Lane said...

Smithfly needs to make a velcro cup holder attachment, I could use a holder for my energy drinks, my Hyde Skiff only has cup holders for the front and back knee braces, the rower is SOL.
If they need someone to test it... I could try and fit it in my busy schedule ;)

Cameron Mortenson said...

TIH...if you think about it long enough, then I bet you could talk yourself into another cooler. HA...

Chuck...I bet something like that is in the works. I know that Ethan is working on quite a few new MOLLE attachments for his products.

Unknown said...

Why did you flip the latches?

Cameron Mortenson said...

Unknown... It keeps the latches from grabbing fly lines. You might not believe that it would help that much but it really does.