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Old 12-25-2013   #1
Fort Collins, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 78
Cooler mount?

I am thinking of putting a cooler bay in place of my rowing seat. Row from sitting on cooler. I have never had or used a setup like this, can you strap the cooler in between two frame bars and leave it sitting on the self bailing floor or do you need a cooler mount of some kind keeping the cooler up off the floor? If so do I need to get a fancy mount or can it be done with straps?

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Old 12-25-2013   #2
Learch's Avatar
Dundee, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1989
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 655
I'm too fat for that, I need weight up front. I don't think having anything rub around on the floor is a good idea. You'd have to make damn sure the cooler bottom is clean every time it went in, and you'd have to have a really smooth cooler. NRS makes a hybrid strap system that you could use. Do you intend to sit on in too, or do you have a suspended seat mount?
My drybox is suspended by the frame and it locks in solid, but still rubs a little. On my 6 year old raft, you can tell where the drybox goes. I wash the floor of the drybox before I mount it in the frame, and I make sure the aluminum doesn't get gouged on shore.

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Old 12-25-2013   #3
cataraftgirl's Avatar
Sandy, Utah
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,120
I have rowed from a dry box, but not a cooler. I've always used a drop bag for my cooler. Haven't tried straps or cooler mounts. One thing I've noticed with coolers is that they have a tendency to move/rotate when you sit on them and shift your weight around. At least this happens with a drop bag, and probably will with straps as well. Not sure if a cooler mount would eliminate that? I tried putting a piece of yoga mat in my cooler drop bag, and that helped somewhat with the slipping & rotation of the cooler, but not enough to make me want to row from it on a daily basis. The dry box is much more stable and "locked in." I do have one cooler that has a substantial lip on it that rests on the frame cross bars. I still have a drop bag as a back up under it, but it was much more stable to sit on.
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Old 12-25-2013   #4
mtrafter's Avatar
bend, Oregon
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 152
ive rowed off boxes and coolers for years, all I do is suspend them with cam loop straps,two on the bottom and two over the top,never had a problem
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Old 12-26-2013   #5
Steamboat Springs, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 63
if u got the cash down river flipseat.
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Old 12-26-2013   #6
prescott, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1982
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 276
my 2 cents/old school style

a bomber way to suspend a cooler that i've used, is to use a piece of 3/4 plywood with 1" holes in the corners.
then suspend the board from the frame with 1" straps.
drop your cooler on top, adjust the height, and it's a very stable platform.

cheap, easy, light and keeps the cooler off the raft floor.

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Old 12-27-2013   #7
River City, Oregon
Paddling Since: 1995
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 195
You definitely wan to keep the cooler off the floor. Not only to protect the floor from holes. But an unsupported cooler will move up and down between the crossbars as the floor flexes in rapids. Your cooler hinges and latches will probably get damaged.

Just hanging a cooler or Drybox by straps or in a drop bag will still allow it to rotate. If you don't go the suspended plywood route, 2 things that help stabilize a cooler are to keep the top straps tightened down, and to have foam padding above or below the cooler or Drybox. Both create friction and allow you to stand/sit on the cooler without (much) rotation.

The commercial hangers work great. But cheap alternatives can be made. Try searching the buzz for cooler hangers. Some have used cut up bucket pieces with slots run through them for threading the hanger straps to create that friction. Another alternative is retired forestry hose from your local wildland fire department. Thread a 2' peice over the hanger straps. The fire hose has a rubber coating on the inside that grips the hanger straps and gives some friction for the cooler.
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Old 01-02-2014   #8
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Flagstaff, Arizona
Paddling Since: 1993
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 57
I sit on the cooler in my 18' raft but have it mounted in front of me on my 14' raft to move more weight to the front. One thing to consider is the possible difference in seat height you may have from the change and whether you'll need different oar towers. As suggested by others, a support board under the cooler will keep it from rotating. With just straps it will slide around.
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Old 01-10-2014   #9
Louisville, Colorado
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 520
I row from a cooler suspended by NRS cooler straps in a tight fitting frame. Those straps suck - they shift around and things get lopsided. Get 4 dedicated loop straps. Also, you may end up sitting higher than your current set up, which may make you wish for taller oar towers. This happened with my husbands rig.
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Old 01-10-2014   #10
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Niwot, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 750
Originally Posted by catwoman View Post
I row from a cooler suspended by NRS cooler straps in a tight fitting frame. Those straps suck - they shift around and things get lopsided. Get 4 dedicated loop straps. Also, you may end up sitting higher than your current set up, which may make you wish for taller oar towers. This happened with my husbands rig.
I've heard about this and even was warned about this by some of the folks at DRE. I purchase a set of the NRS cooler straps and will be bar-tacking some webbing between the lower and side straps to prevent just this. We'll see how it works.

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