Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

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Kairielise
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Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Kairielise » Mon Nov 04, 2013 8:43 pm

I know those cheap styrofoam coolers are discouraged because of their propensity for moopiness, but are they outright banned? If I, for example, took the time to carefully shrink wrap it or cover every square inch with plastic bag and packing tape before filling it and bringing it to BRC, will it be turned away at the gate?

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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Drawingablank » Mon Nov 04, 2013 8:52 pm

I don't think so, but why would you want to rely on something so flimsy for such an essential task?

Edit: Foam coolers don't hold very much either.
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by BoyScoutGirl » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:00 pm

Apart from how much volume they may or may not hold, I imagine the fact that they don't hold heat well would be a huge annoyance.
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Elliot » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:07 pm

Yeah, a good ice chest is worth the money. True, money is hard to come by for many of us, but everything is a matter of setting priorities. :D
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by ygmir » Mon Nov 04, 2013 9:17 pm

there is a list somewhere on the main site of "banned items".
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Lowz » Tue Nov 05, 2013 12:12 am

We used some 2 years in a row for the Bar of the people. Pretty good stuff
(and we are very proud of our green status, no mop allowed)
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by FossaFerox » Tue Nov 05, 2013 12:16 am

Styrofoam coolers come in different qualities. The cheap 7-11 ones suck at keeping things cold and moop like crazy. The medical grade ones work better than most plastic ones and won't shed a single bead unless you take a hammer to the damn thing. YMMV.
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by some seeing eye » Tue Nov 05, 2013 3:10 am

New coolers are cheap, especially this time of year, anytime on Craigslist, in thrift stores. On regional burner lists, borrowable from regional burners taking a year off. You could probably pick up dozens after the event from fly out burners after the event, free.
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Sham » Tue Nov 05, 2013 3:48 am

The styrofoam coolers tend to have their covers fly off in the wind, as well as split if stuffed with food and ice. They can be reinforced with duct tape, and a hinge can be fabricated but it's still trash after a matter of days. I paid $18 for a lower end plastic cooler for the past several years, and passed them on to someone in my camp. It's always nice to see them being used for many years. The cheap coolers don't have drains, but neither do the styrofoam ones.

In answer to the OP's question, there is no ban, but why would you really want to bring one?

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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Kairielise » Tue Nov 05, 2013 4:30 am

Well, I have this plan to fly to Reno, rent a box truck for BM. I want to build a cheap basic frame out of 2x4s, just big enough to fit in the opening at the back with the door rolled up. Stretch 2-3 layers of 2mm Visqueen over the frame and secure with staples or tacks, secure the frame to the sides of the truck with a couple C-clamps, and seal all cracks and crevasses with duct tape. I want to make a tent flap style opening by cutting a verticle slit up the middle and sealing in a 6' zipper. Then, I cut a 12" x 12: hole in the upper-right corner and seal in a furnace filter. Rig a box fan in front of that, blowing out. Then I take an 8' length of flexible dryer hose, cover one end with material from another furnace filter, and securing that end in the shady area under the truck, then running the hose through a hole cut in the lower left corner of the visqueen, and attach to a hole cut in the side of the Styrofoam cooler. I keep the cooler filled with zip-lock bags of ice, and put another small vent hole on the front. Put a solar panel on the roof to run the fan and charge the LED lights for night time. As the fan blows hot air out of the truck, I'm hoping it'll create a low pressure zone inside, which will suck cooler air from under the truck, through the dryer hose, into the Styrofoam ice box, cooling it ever more, and into the truck. Make-shift AC!

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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by FIGJAM » Tue Nov 05, 2013 5:16 am

You will be spending a lot of time and money on ice. :shock:
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by LowePro » Tue Nov 05, 2013 10:01 am

I like your style, esp the idea to make a back door frame that fits in the box truck.

But if you are successful in creating a low-pressure environment inside the truck it will also suck in dust.
Consider building one of Figjam's swamp coolers instead of your ice+fan AC idea. The swamp cooler creates slightly higher pressure inside your structure, reducing dust somewhat. I used a bucket swamp cooler on a small travel trailer and it was enough to keep it cool to sleep in (in the morning) and bearable in the afternoon. And was less dusty. It doesn't require you to buy ice and gets rid of (Clean) gray water.

You ideas are right-on about having the air input low on the door and the exhaust High on the door. Good luck.

I guess this is significant drift from your initial question, but in my experience styro coolers (like everything at BRC) is prone to getting banged, kicked, punched, or stepped on in the middle of the night. My camp mates brought one (against the rest of our's better judgement) and it created a huge mess in their trailer. Not just styro fuzzies, but gross liquid dripping everywhere. A plastic storage tote or thrift-store cooler is probably a better bet and you could cut it with a jigsaw.

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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Elliot » Tue Nov 05, 2013 2:16 pm

Kid, I love your ability to think, invent, plan, brainstorm and so on. Keep after it, and you will need to wear shades, your future as a burner is so bright (as the saying goes). :D
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Drawingablank » Tue Nov 05, 2013 8:07 pm

Sounds great, but perhaps you are planning for armageddon or something. I regularly camp in a box truck at the burn and it is comfy until about 9:30 AM with the door closed, 11 AM with it open. After that if I want to sleep I move to my shade structure.

Your mileage may vary, but since I generally sleep 3 hours a day at the burn this works for me and I don't need to build anything elaborate for the truck.

I subscribe to the KISS principle.
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by gaminwench » Tue Nov 05, 2013 10:53 pm

I'm with DAB, here ...

I hang a (lovely, colorful) cotton sheet with clips from the rail at the top of the door;
it hangs down or rolls up and tucks in the side rails,
providing privacy/light abatement/invitation as I see fit.
I bring a battery operated fan, which I have used twice in ~ years.

I only close the door completely when I leave camp and during dust storms.

I sleep late :D

The trick is to park the truck (palace) with the cab facing the sunrise.
(Most) Prevailing winds will be broadside,
and you're unlikely to be hanging in your box truck in the late afternoon,
when the sun is ON your fabric shade door. (Get out there, the playawaits!)

ProTip: S hooks and door racks are great for hanging your stuff from the interior rails!
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Kairielise » Wed Nov 06, 2013 5:45 am

Elliot wrote:Kid, I love your ability to think, invent, plan, brainstorm and so on. Keep after it, and you will need to wear shades, your future as a burner is so bright (as the saying goes). :D
Aww, you big sweety! :mrgreen:

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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Kairielise » Wed Nov 06, 2013 5:53 am

Drawingablank wrote:Sounds great, but perhaps you are planning for armageddon or something. I regularly camp in a box truck at the burn and it is comfy until about 9:30 AM with the door closed, 11 AM with it open. After that if I want to sleep I move to my shade structure.

Your mileage may vary, but since I generally sleep 3 hours a day at the burn this works for me and I don't need to build anything elaborate for the truck.

I subscribe to the KISS principle.
But I'm a delicate little flower!!!!! :twisted:

LOL, it'll be my first burn so I figured plan for the worst, hope for the best. I'm a Florida girl, so I'm used to heat, but not dry heat. I'm also used to AC. Florida generally hovers around 80-90% humidity, and we're just above sea level, so the lack of Oxygen is gonna be a big shock to my system too.

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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by BBadger » Wed Nov 06, 2013 7:36 am

If you're used to Florida heat, this dry heat will have nothing on you, other than maybe you'll need more lotion. Humidity is the enemy of comfort. Unlike humid locations like Florida, the heat doesn't follow you into the shade. You'll be standing there in the shade of someone's carport thinking "What the hell? This ain't hot at all!"

When I go from this region of low humidity but hot temperatures (Utah) to some place with high humidity, and not even all that hot temperatures like Austin, Texas (in spring) my energy is sapped the moment I leave air conditioned buildings. I feel like I have to bring a machete to hack through the wall of moisture that impedes my comfort there. In Utah I merely need to seek out a patch of shade and I'm all right. I've also been told that this is the same experience from someone coming from Austin to a dry-heat place like Phoenix, Arizona: it's incredibly comfortable even during the midst of summer. Even hiking in southern Utah, in the middle of the summer, in the driest locations at 105-110 F isn't terrible so long as you have a hat, sunblock and enough water/electrolytes.

BRC isn't even all that hot. It's more you'll be outside for longer durations in the open than you're used to, doing more stuff. You can't haul your evaporation-based cooler along when you're doing stuff in the day, though you can bring a spray bottle. The coolers are mostly about keeping cool when you want to sleep during the daytime. The fact that there isn't humidity to spread heat everywhere, shade structures work excellent to keep cool as long as they're well vented.

The lack of humidity also means that evaporation can actually be used to cool you down. Your sweat will actually work the way it's supposed to in BRC: evaporating off your body and cooling you down. In humid regions, your body tries to cool off with its natural sweat system, but with no place for that moisture to go, you just drip the sweat away. Not efficient! In dry locations, swamp coolers, spray bottles, misters, etc. work great, and you don't even need cold water because the process of evaporation will do the cooling for you. Forget the ice! You just need water to carry away that heat.

Something to definitely remember to bring is a jacket! The lack of humidity also means that temperatures drop very quickly at night. At around 3AM the nights get really cold and you'll be wondering how you were ever hot during the day.
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by remi » Thu Nov 07, 2013 2:36 pm

I flew to a festival called Wakarusa in Arkansas, and I thought I would save money and travel space by purchasing a cheap Styrofoam cooler instead of an expensive one, or to travel with one from home. Without even touching on the moopy-ness of these pieces of shit, they are just awful! If you're like me and love to drink cold booze.. you'll try and jam that thing as full as possible. From the moment I packed it.. it didn't even last through the night. I had to reinforce all the corners with duct tape... I still have nightmares about that nearly useless shit box. If you're flying, and need to buy a cooler when you get here.. go with a cheap hard plastic walmart kind for 15$-20$ instead of a 3$ Styrofoam one... you'll thank me for it.

EDIT: And ttitd's weather is quite a bit harsher than any other.. Don't cheap out on your cooler unless you don't mind hot beer.
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by dragonpilot » Thu Nov 07, 2013 4:12 pm

I have about 8 hard-side coolers I've collected over the years...I'll give you one! Just don't bring a styro cooler. Or buy your own and if you're flying in use it as luggage.
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by Kairielise » Thu Nov 07, 2013 4:50 pm

understood :oops:

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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by BBadger » Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:25 pm

Well a styrofoam cooler is useful if you only have access to those crappy solid-wall coolers that don't have any insulation between the walls. You'll end up having to tape the thing up and secure it to make sure it doesn't emit styrofoam "dandruff" and doesn't make a mess from being kicked or ruined (it won't prevent it though). Maybe you'll even just jam the styrofoam inside the solid-wall cooler, but if you're going to do that, just get a better solid-wall cooler.

Otherwise, it's always better to get one of those pre-built, insulated, solid-wall coolers. They use better quality insulation, are solid-walled, the insulation makes the walls even stronger, some have wheels, you can of course reuse them, they're great seats, and you don't have to waste time and money taping the damn thing up and hoping nobody bumps into it. Uninsulated solid-wall coolers are good as storage chests -- much better than those Rubbermaid bins.
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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by NormG1 » Fri Jul 04, 2014 6:46 pm

Check this out and please let me know if you have experience with these Kelty Folding Coolers.

http://www.outdoorplay.com/Kelty-Folding-Cooler

I live in a small apartment, so after BM, these will fold up nicely and slide right under the bed.

I am planning to go the dry ice and frozen water bottle route. Since my freezer at home is small, my understadning is that the cooler with the dry ice will freeze all my water bottles on the way to BM. The stuff is really cold. That freezer will only contain items I want frozen. Even ice cream I hear.

Then I take out one frozen water bottle every day and put it in the food cooler. As it thaws, it will make my drinking water for the next day.

Nothing to drain, no water in the bottom of the cooler making everything soggy.

My only question is will these coolers keep things cold?

Norm

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Re: Are Styrofoam coolers banned?

Post by lucky420 » Fri Jul 04, 2014 6:49 pm

Sweet coolers! And yeah coolers do take up a lot of room
Oh my god, it's HUGE!

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