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DIY Gear: Make a Koozie Cartridge Holder in Five Steps

If you are frugal, value functionality, and are searching for a fun, non-labor-intensive project this summer, boom—The koozie cartridge holder!

DIY Gear: Make a Koozie Cartridge Holder in Five Steps

What’s better than beating the summertime heat than a refreshing beverage? Some of you immediately thought—”two refreshing beverages.”  And while you wouldn’t technically be incorrect and your zest for life commendable—I'm here to share a way to make your own cartridge holder by repurposing something you likely have. Here’s a hint: It’s already in your grips.

Koozies are like leftover sauce packets or 9mm Glock magazines—there's a high probability that most households in America have one lying around that can be plucked from obscurity and put to good use. They are nicely padded, dimensionally sleek, come in many variations, and can be made snug-fit to your cartridge profile.

Giving credit where credit is due, a client I guided during spring bear season this past May was toting one around and it caught my interest.  At the end of the trip, Brad gave me it, which was extremely cool, and said his mother, “Mama Roccaforte” had been fashioning them for friends and family for quite a while—and so can you!

Step 1: Select Your Koozie

can in a koozie

I’m not a flashy guy.  There’s a whole smorgasbord of color, camouflage, and branded koozies in circulation. If you are planning to utilize it while hunting, I recommend something bright that will be less susceptible to losing if placed out of your pocket or pack.

Step 2: Snip the Stirrup

At the bottom of the koozie, there is typically a stirrup that supports the bottom of a can or bottle. Take a pair of scissors and cut along the junction so that the material remaining is almost a perfect square.

Step 3: Sewing Machine or By Hand

sewing machine

Disclaimer: I know nothing about sewing machines. I am lucky that my wife was willing to assist me in this project by answering some questions regarding navigating a sewing machine. She said, “The good news is that even if you don’t own a machine, the overall amount to be sewn is relatively small and can be done by hand-stitching.”

Step 4: Horizontal Bottom Stitch

Essentially, you are going to stitch a line across the bottom of the koozie about 1/16th to 1/8th of an inch up from the edge so that enough material meat can be woven into. This stitch will prevent your cartridges from shifting all the way through your holder and give a little buffer to stifle tip deformation from occurring.

koozie and stitching

Step 5: Stitching the Vertical Columns

Determine the cartridge or cartridge family you intend to use with the holder. For instance, if a short and fat cartridge like 300 WSM or 7SAUM is used, or a large magnum—you may only need to sew three vertical columns so that there are four cartridge slots. The foam material is elastic and pliable, so keep in mind that pertaining to column width, narrower is better than too wide to achieve snug-fitting to accommodate cartridges. I hunt a lot with 06’ family of cartridges like the 280 Ackley Improved and found that four vertical stitches spaced about ¾ of an inch apart work wonderfully and permit you to have five extra cartridges on hand and protected.

There are a lot of companies making cartridge holders these days and prices range from $5 dollars to $40 dollars on average. Ultimately, I bet that most of you are looking for accessibility to and protection for—your cartridges. The ability to select and “customize” a cartridge holder via a koozie, a half hour of time, and a little wherewithal should make you feel resourceful. We celebrate independence on the 4th of July, and the dog days of summer that follow are for demonstrating independence—finish your drink and build your own cartridge holder! 




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