Outter Limits Gear Company History
Necessity was the mother of invention for the VaultPack!
Outter Limits Gear USA
Evolution Stemmed From A Practical Need
The Outter Limits Gear company history highlights the power of “Yankee ingenuity” and an entrepreneurial approach to solving a problem.
Our History & Origin Story
The origin story of Outter Limits Gear USA started when the company founder – RJ Bungert – was working a rugged, on-the-move job as a miner. His job involved running heavy equipment, working in the plant, and in the pit as a utility hand. His job caused him to jump around from various tasks throughout the day.
Because he often was down in a mine, or in the middle of nowhere, he had to bring lunch, snacks, and other supplies – because there typically were no food outlets where he could buy his lunch. This is where he encountered the problems that lead to the design of the VaultPack backpack cooler system.
RJ first tried taking along a cooler filled with ice to keep his food chilled and safe to eat. But this produced four key problems that kept him from being able to enjoy a simple, mid-day meal.
Initially, he found that the ice melted too fast, and he couldn’t keep his food cold. This greatly limited what food he could bring that would be safe to eat if it was not kept chilled.
Then, when he put his food directly in contact with ice to keep it cold, his lunch froze solid.
To add insult to injury, as the ice melted, it also filled the container with ice water, and his lunch often ended up a sodden, wet mess.
Finally, as he was putting various food items in the same container, the weight of the heavier items literally crushed the soft food items like chips, soft fruit, and sandwiches.
After the use of a hard cooler failed miserably, RJ bought and combined a big backpack and a cheap lunchbox. He put the lunchbox inside the backpack to keep food and other items like tools and reading materials separated. But he still needed a solution to properly cool lunch foods that needed refrigeration. After trying this approach, he decided the flimsy backpack and flimsy lunchbox weren’t working.
He needed a solution where his food could be kept cold but not come into direct contact with the ice or cold pack to prevent his lunch from freezing. He also needed a solution where key items (food, drink, tools & reading materials) could be separated into compartments to protect them.
These challenges to just be able to enjoy a healthy lunch brought from home generated the eureka moments that lead to the concepting and development of the VaultPack backpack cooler. He decided to design a heavy-duty backpack cooler that would:
Be durable and waterproof for rugged outdoor activities and work environments;
Provide consistent cooling without freezing food; and
Also provide the ability to organize and separate items to prevent soft items from being crushed.
Outter Limits Gear Company History
2017 Was The Action Year
2017 was the year that RJ developed the design of the first VaultPack concept, and got it patented. His original idea was to create a compartmentalized container that would fit in a standard backpack. But then he realized that a heavy-duty, waterproof, insulated backpack was a needed part of the equation.
In 2020, on the eve of the Covid pandemic, RJ incorporated, and took the initial version of the VaultPack into production. After selling the initial units, he continued polishing the design and functionality – and brought an enhanced version of the VaultPack to market in 2022.
The 2.0 version of the VaultPack features a waterproof backpack cooler and the removable Vault (the interior hardcase that can be compartmentalized with a series of configurable dividers).
This second version of the VaultPack concept came off the assembly line in 2022, and it has been well-received. The company is initially selling the VaultPack backpack cooler system direct to consumers – while distribution agreements with retailers are underway.
“This whole journey started with me trying to solve a problem for my own work life. And now, the VaultPack is available to people from many walks of life – from folks working in rugged environments to day-hikers, outdoor enthusiasts, families attending sporting events and picnics, and much more. I’m pleased for the opportunity to bring the VaultPack from concept to market, and I’m grateful for all the people along the way who’ve helped me make this dream.”