Yeti Hopper Knuckle Saver


Introduction: Yeti Hopper Knuckle Saver

I was thrilled when my wife bought me a Yeti Hopper 20 for Christmas last year. Its performance is amazing, it never leaks, and it's the perfect size to take to a friend's house, a party, a sporting event, etc. However, the first couple of times I used it I noticed a major design flaw. The stinking thing destroys your knuckles when loading it. It literally drew blood. It became a two person job to load the cooler: my wife to hold it open and me to load it. I knew I needed to come up with a solution if I was going to use it long-term.

So, I present to you, the best $4 / 5 minute upgrade you can do for a Yeti Hopper.

Step 1: Buy the Supplies

The simple concept is to hold open the zipper to enable easy loading. At first, I considered a big piece of PVC. However, after looking around at Home Depot for a bit, I found a better solution: a 3.3 gallon Sterilite trash can that is shaped like a funnel.

So, If you haven't already, buy yourself a Hopper. Here's an Amazon link:

Next, you need to buy the trash can. Like I mentioned, I found it at my local Home Depot. It is a clear Sterilite 3.3 gallon can. You can also buy it online here.

Step 2: Cut the Bottom Out of the Trash Can

This is pretty self explanatory. You can use a blade, but the can is pretty thick. I just used a rotary tool and cutting wheel and it was done in a couple of minutes. I filed it down to remove sharp edges and I was done. Do leave a little of the bottom around the edges for structural support. You don't want the can to fold under the pressure from the cooler.

Step 3: You're Finished

That's it. Just insert the can and you're ready to load it up solo, knuckles intact.



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    4 Discussions

    Such a simple solution. It's sad that such an expensive overpriced cooler will have a design flaw like this. Maybe you should point it out to yeti so they can fix it. But they might add another hundred to the price tag. lol Thanks for sharing your idea. Maybe you should patent it before they do.

    3 replies

    Haha. I know. It's so true. What they should do is install rubber flaps that cover the zipper for loading and unloading, or something rigid to keep the zipper spread open. What's funny is how every owner can relate to this frustration. If they don't already know about it, they are living in a cave.

    I was thinking the same thing but vinyl instead of rubber flaps since that's probably what that cooler is made of or maybe adding a flexible wire inside near the zipper line. That funnel idea will also work best if it was shorter height wise, maybe about 3 inches high using another wastebasket with a smaller diameter opening. It will keep it opened and this way you can take it with you in case you need to reload with more ice when on the go.

    I did consider that. You can probably cut this one shorter so it slides in, but then it'd be blocking the edges of the cooler. I figure it's fairly rare to need to re-load a cooler on the go. I usually fill it, then empty it and head home. If it comes to it, I can always have someone help reload it and leave the funnel at home. I do like the wire idea.