Planetary Design Table Top French Press

By Steve

About three years ago, I purchased one of these bad boys from REI.

That, m’friends, is a 48 oz. insulated French press coffee pot. It makes very, very good coffee and keeps it warm for a good two hours after brewing. This baby is great for camping with friends, as it makes four good-sized cups of strong-ass coffee – just the thing to power you through a day of hiking or power lounging around the campsite.

The coffee it makes is so good that I started using it at home on the weekends, too. It’s just a great option for a Saturday morning cup or two with the neighbor friends.

Alas, all is not perfect in the land of 48 oz. French press coffee pots. About a year into my ownership of this awesome rig, the handle fell off. REI being the great retailer that it is, swapped mine out for a new one, no questions asked. All was well for another eight months or so, when the handle fell off the replacement rig.


Now, I know what you’re thinking – Steve must beat the hell out of his coffee pots. I assure you, this is not the case. I don’t treat it like it’s made of glass, but I also don’t beat it up. But I did feel guilty about returning coffee pot number two to REI, so I used a little super glue and re-attached the handle. Which held for about a month. Then I got all MacGyver on the thing and sanded the mating surfaces on the handle where the handle attaches on the pot, then glued it and clamped that mo-fo with a big ‘ol clamp for a few hours to make sure that thing wasn’t comin’ off.

Which worked for about three months.

At that point, I admitted defeat and just started using the pot, sans handle. The carafe does such a good job of insulating that even with near-boiling water inside, the metal outside is merely lukewarm to the touch. I was perfectly happy to use it that way.

Then I noticed that there’s a website printed on the bottom of the unit – I decided to pop on by and let ’em know that they have a great product, but the handle needs a more robust mount. The next day I got an email reply from Doug Pikul, customer service manager at Planetary Design, who offered to send me a brand new unit, no charge. How cool is that?

Thank you, Doug and Planetary Design! That’s some fantastic customer service right there.