Tom Claycomb reviews a new icebox maker and gets a factory tour from Cordova Coolers.
Idaho – -(AmmoLand.com)- I’m not a drama queen and try to check out the facts before reacting so when I first heard that Yeti had blindsided the NRA and gone the politically correct route instead of making a good business decision I wanted to check it out before badmouthing them. (That investigation eventually led me into meeting with the wildly popular Cordova Coolers crew).
After a couple of phone calls and emails to Yeti, it became apparent to me that they were trying to appeal to the anti’s and please them. I offered them some advice and told them they needed to do some damage control fast if they didn’t want to lose all of us outdoorsmen as customers. They told me it’d take a month or two to get it all straightened out. I told them no, all they had to do was to have the NRA call and tell us Outdoor Writers that they hadn’t been blindsided and we could get the word out in one day and we could squelch that rumor. But, that I wouldn’t believe anyone but the NRA. They chose not to heed any advice so if they go under it is by their own choosing.
Meeting Cordova Coolers
As luck would have it, not long thereafter I had some seminars at the Great Northwest Outdoor Expo in Nampa, Idaho and met a new outfit named Cordova Coolers. If you haven’t heard of them read on. They had a booth at the show and I got to meet the crew. I was impressed with their product and gung-ho crew and in a short amount of time, a factory tour with Cordova was lined up.
I met up with their head marketing guy, Joe Lebresh at the Cordova Coolers plant last Monday morning and he conducted the tour. I’m familiar with high-speed manufacturing settings and was impressed with their culture. The workers appeared to be conscientious, hard-working guys and gals. They had a clean, smooth running operation.
They are doing well and bursting at the seams. While I was there they were breaking ground and expanding on a new building. It appears to me that they are doubling in size.
The Cordova Coolers factory tour was interesting. I learned how they fill their molds with the plastic dust to form the outside liner. They pour the dry material into the cooler form and it then enters the oven. After being pulled from the oven, mold foam is then injected for the insulation properties. Like all production lines, it moves at a high rate of speed during the assembling process.
I like the Cordova Coolers latches better than the ones I’ve seen on other coolers. The end product is a stout, bear-proof cooler. If something is bear proof, that’s only one rating behind being kid proof. Which is a lot tougher than being nuclear proof!
Cordova Coolers are going like gangbusters but I’m going to make a prediction. It seems to be mainly an NW customer-based company. As soon as the fishermen down on the Texas, La., Miss. and Florida coast to find out about Cordova, there aren’t enough construction companies in Idaho to add onto the Plant fast enough to keep up with production.
Next week AmmoLand’s Fredy Reihl and his daughter are coming out to see me in Idaho. We’re going four-wheeling down in the Owhyees which is some unique country. It is basically the high desert type of terrain with rugged canyons, gorges, and mountains. In the summer it can be blistering hot and dry and in the winter it can be brutal. Last January while elk hunting I had a gallon bottle of water freeze sold in my tent one night.
So while at the factory I grabbed one of their coolers and we’re going to test it on our week-long trip. If it holds up to the Owhyees and keeps ice frozen, it will pass the test in my book. Hold tight, more to come on Cordova Coolers.
About Tom Claycomb
Tom Claycomb has been an avid hunter/fisherman throughout his life as well as an outdoors writer with outdoor columns in the magazine Hunt Alaska, Bass Pro Shops, Bowhunter.net and freelances for numerous magazines and newspapers. “To properly skin your animal you will need a sharp knife. I have an e-article on Amazon Kindle titled Knife Sharpening for $.99 if you’re having trouble”