Miniature Cooler Keeps Drink Frosty

Just in time for summer is a new cooler to keep a soda or a beer frosty at the beach, on a hiking trip, on the golf course or elsewhere. It looks a lot like the familiar Styrofoam single-can coolers, but it’s got added features--a lid to make it portable and a small gel insert that you can keep in the freezer until you want to pop it into the bottom of the container.

The Polar Ice Cap beverage cooler is made of a plastic shell with a 3/8-inch-thick Styrofoam liner and will hold any 12-ounce aluminum can. Its lid slips over the upper portion of the can, forming a seal over the can and top of the plastic container.

The refreezable, plastic insert, which Polar Products Corp. President Steve Salinda calls a “puck,” is filled with a non-toxic gel and constructed so it makes constant surface contact with the concave bottom of an aluminum can. During product research studies, Salinda said, his beverage cooler has kept a can cold “from six to eight hours.”

The Polar Ice Cap is available in 16 different color combinations of red, yellow, white and blue and costs $3.99, plus $1 for shipping and handling (California residents add 6 1/2% sales tax). To order, write Polar Products, P.O. Box 3058, El Segundo, Calif. 90245-8158.


Stick ‘em Up to Stay

If you live in earthquake country or have a rambunctious cat that knocks things off the mantel, you might want to consider a clever product that will help secure valuable objects to surfaces in your home or office. Or you also could fasten down items such as radios or televisions in your RV.

Manufactured by Quake Safety Products in Duarte, Calif., these high-tech fasteners have adhesive-backed Velcro surfaces. You simply peel the paper off one adhesive back and press it on the base of the object you’re securing (you may need to use several fasteners, depending on the size of the object). Then peel off the other side of the covering, position the object onto the desired surface and press down firmly with a slight twisting motion. Wait 24 hours to allow the adhesive to cure before attempting to separate the Velcro hook and loop sides.

In the case of vases, figurines or glassware that you may want to wash, Quake Safety Products President Roger Whittier recommends placing the hook side of the Velcro patch on the vase and the loop (or fuzzy) side on the table. That way, he says, you will be able to remove the items and wash them in hot soapy water because the hook side does not absorb water, so the patch won’t lose its effectiveness.


Whittier also suggests the patches be used only on horizontal surfaces, not to hold something on a wall. The strong-bonding adhesive won’t mar normal wood finishes (even varnish or shellac), he says, but could possibly take off paint.

The patches have a holding strength of 12 pounds per square inch.

Quake Safety fasteners can be purchased in kits. Kit 101, with six pads for items weighing less than 15 pounds, costs $4.40; Kit 201, for less than 25 pounds weight, $5.60; Kit 301, for 35 pounds weight, $10.50; Kit 401, for up to 50 pounds, $12.50, and Kit 501, for a personal computer system, $29.50. To order, write Quake Safety Products, P.O. Box 787, Duarte, Calif. 91010; phone (818) 357-0618.

Vacuum Fido’s Coat

A new cordless pet-grooming vacuum removes loose hair and dirt from your dog’s or cat’s coat quickly and easily. A six-volt vacuum, it’s quieter than the ones used by professional groomers, but that doesn’t necessarily mean your cat will like it. You might get a sensitive feline used to it over a period of time, said a spokeswoman for Hammacher Schlemmer, the company featuring the vacuum, “but it’s really great for dogs.”

The plastic vacuum, which runs on four C batteries, is lightweight (9 ounces) and resembles a dumbbell with a nylon bristle brush in one end. It also contains a removable collection container. Contrary to the claim in the company catalogue, though, the vacuum does not remove fleas and ticks from your pet, the Hammacher Schlemmer spokeswoman acknowledged.

The vacuum costs $37 postpaid and can be ordered from Hammacher Schlemmer stores in New York, Chicago or Beverly Hills or through the company’s catalogue, (800) 543-3366.

Adjustable Cushion


A Venice, Calif., company has just introduced a new two-in-one back support cushion that’s three inches narrower than most, so it fits bucket car seats and office chair backs.

Called Comfy-Back Jr., the 12-inch-wide cushion has a hinge in the middle, so it can be used as a two-cushion support or folded into a firmer, smaller one. The top roll is filled with a firm density foam; the bottom one with medium density. When the cushion is open, it provides lumbar support to help relieve lower back strain. Folded into a cervical roll--the two cushions attach with a Velcro tab--it helps relieve neck and back pain. It’s also easy to carry with you.

The company also makes three other sizes of orthopedic Comfy-Back cushions, two with a seat pad as well as a special back support. They come in black, gray, blue or tan. All are made of 100% Olefin material that has built-in stain protections, is colorfast, non-allergenic and moth and mildew proof, according to Jack Evans, vice president of the E.J. Evans company, the manufacturer.

Comfy-Back cushions are available nationwide in selected drug stores and medical stores. In Southern California they are sold at Horton & Converse drugstores or Abbey Medical stores. For information about stores in your area that carry the cushions, write E.J. Evans Co., 1611 Lincoln Blvd., P.O. Box 988, Venice, Calif. 90294; phone (213) 821-6400.