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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 11-21-2014, 04:44 PM   #1
acbaldwi
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Join Date: 01-17-14
Location: Golden, CO
Default Recommendations on a vacum sealer?

Looking for a vacuum sealer that doesn't necessarily cost a million dollars but will work good... I'm guessing it's the holy grail....


I saw one recommendation for a Cabelas unit, kinda pricey tho, and looks like some people have had some luck with food saver....


If your happy/unhappy with yours would you mind giving me a model # either way so i can try to sort out what i want?

Thanks

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Old 11-21-2014, 04:50 PM   #2
SOB
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Works good enough.
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Old 11-21-2014, 04:52 PM   #3
Jousting Pigs
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I've used this little Seal A Meal I got on Amazon and I love this thing. Not the most powerful but it gets the job done. I bagged 20+ bags of pork, ribs, and brisket a couple weekends ago with no problems. Had mine about 6 months with no problems.



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Old 11-21-2014, 04:57 PM   #4
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One of the ones from wallyworld will work just as good as the high dollar ones. Just not as many bells and whistles (which come in handy at times)
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Old 11-21-2014, 05:06 PM   #5
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I got a FoodSaver at Costco and it works fine for me, you do have to give it a rest every now and then if you're doing a lot.
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Old 11-21-2014, 05:21 PM   #6
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The bottom line is:

We will give you all kinds of recommendations and they may even confuse you in your choice....

You need to figure out what you want from your sealer and just how often you will use it before making an educated choice.

I started out with a FoodSaver which made poor seals and within 4 months it bit the dust, followed by a second FoodSaver which lasted a little over 6 months. However, I used it a lot, much more than the average kitchen. For occasional use it probably would be a great unit. After the second FoodSaver went bad, I realized that I would have to keep buying these units for who knows how long... They are not repairable, parts are not available for them, and they are considered disposable units.

For someone who does not seal items on a regular basis, it is probably a great unit for the price and will work very well with low frequency. It is light and it stores easily between uses in a cabinet or shelf taking up very little space.

After my two failures I figured I had already spent enough to buy a heavy duty unit, so now I actually figured it was time to purchased one. I choose the Weston because it has dual piston pumps rather than a singe pump, although a perfect vacuum is 0 psi, the food saver draw is -7 psi whereas the Weston is -14 psi. We all realize that neither will ever exceed the 0 psi of a vacuum, the Weston unit does get you to the vacuum state with more consistency over a shorter period of time. It has both manual and automatic seal functions, so one can manually seal with liquid operations or let it automatically seal with dry operations.

The Weston also has user serviceable parts readily available so you can repair the unit if need be, or send it back for repair. I have had mine for 3 years and only recently I replaced foam seals and heater bar for less than 30 dollars and took less than 10 minutes with minimal effort. While the unit was working properly, I felt preventative maintenance is also part of caring for the unit.

I choose the Weston 2300 model because it had a stainless steel shell, the 2100 is identical but has an enamel finish for a few hundred dollars less. I have had the Weston for almost 3 years now without incident sealing 10 to 20 bags a week depending upon activities for that week. The downside of the Weston is that it has a very large footprint and weighs about 40 (or more) pounds so it does not store easily unless you have a second kitchen or private prep area where you can leave it out all the time.

The Weston unit seals appears to be twice as wide, and seals flawlessly with liquids or food residue present. I have never had a weak seal with the Weston, and the Weston bags are rated for use in boiling water and are also dishwasher safe. I have never reused bags, but many other say they have.

FoodSaver also has sales on bags which give you up to 50% off if you buy in volume. The sale price at 50% off is still higher than the normal prices of Weston brand bags and rolls. I pay $9.50 for 100 pint bags 13.95 for 100 quart bags. Weston will also seal the 15" X 18" bags which will easily seal 2 - 3 pulled pork butts. Weston will use any brand of micro-channel vac-seal bags including foodsaver and vac-master. Vac-master and Weston bags are so cheap they make the use of rolls to save money an antiquated choice. However the use of rolls is still a great choice for sealing racks of ribs and other long items.

But don't be misled here, no vacuum sealer likes liquids, and liquids can damage the unit if it gets into the vacuum chamber, this is even true with the Weston. Chilling soups, stews, and chili for a few hours makes sealing these items easy without incident. You also have the manual seal button which you can press if liquids start to flow into the collection tray before they can be sucked into the the vacuum port. The only unit that does well with liquid content is the vacuum chamber sealer which draws the air our of the chamber rather than the bag. But the price of a chamber sealer is usually cost prohibitive even for the seasoned vac-seal user.

The best advice I can give you, is to do your homework before you buy. Compare, compare, and compare again. The final decision is yours and only you have to live with your choice whether it be good or bad. A higher price does not always mean a better unit, that's why it is important to do your research.

Yes, sometimes you get what you pay for, but without research on the units you could also wind up a lot less that what you paid for.

.
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Old 11-21-2014, 05:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IamMadMan View Post
The bottom line is:

But don't be misled here, no vacuum sealer likes liquids, and liquids can damage the unit if it gets into the vacuum chamber, this is even true with the Weston. Chilling soups, stews, and chili for a few hours makes sealing these items easy without incident. You also have the manual seal button which you can press if liquids start to flow into the collection tray before they can be sucked into the the vacuum port. The only unit that does well with liquid content is the vacuum chamber sealer which draws the air our of the chamber rather than the bag. But the price of a chamber sealer is usually cost prohibitive even for the seasoned vac-seal user.



.
Here's my two cents.....We had a food saver (lasted about a year). WE bought a Weston and it works like a champ. We buy our bags on Amazon because we have prime and get the free shipping. Very Happy with the Weston!

As far as Sealing Liquids: Here's a trick. Use a Tupperware container and fill it with the liquid you want to seal. Put it in the freezer and freeze it. Once frozen take it out of the freezer and Set the container in warm water to loosen the seal and then pop the frozen brick into the bag and seal it up!

You can even do this with marinated meat. Freeze it all together and seal!
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Old 11-21-2014, 07:50 PM   #8
IamMadMan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theBBQspecialist View Post
Here's my two cents.....We had a food saver (lasted about a year). WE bought a Weston and it works like a champ. We buy our bags on Amazon because we have prime and get the free shipping. Very Happy with the Weston!

As far as Sealing Liquids: Here's a trick. Use a Tupperware container and fill it with the liquid you want to seal. Put it in the freezer and freeze it. Once frozen take it out of the freezer and Set the container in warm water to loosen the seal and then pop the frozen brick into the bag and seal it up!

You can even do this with marinated meat. Freeze it all together and seal!
Thanks for the tip....

I too, have the 2300, a real workhorse. I will keep the frozen liquid trick you mentioned in the back of my mind for when Ii need to use it.

PS Guys.... I still love my Humphrey's just as much today as when it first arrived. Thanks for the great quality product you made.
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Old 11-21-2014, 08:03 PM   #9
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I second the Food Saver from Costco.
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Old 11-21-2014, 09:04 PM   #10
acbaldwi
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Not a lot of reviews on it but this one looks interesting.....


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Old 11-22-2014, 05:09 PM   #11
tpope
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You can buy the sealer once, but the bags you buy all the time. That's where the money is... I bought a Sinbo unit. It has a snorkel that sticks into the bag while vacuuming. No special bags required... It will seal a potato chip bag.
http://www.dougcare.com/foodstorage/homeequip.htm#sinbo

There is a model that does liquids and powders too.

Last edited by tpope; 11-22-2014 at 05:12 PM.. Reason: Additional comment
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Old 11-22-2014, 05:46 PM   #12
FatCoyote
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I love mine, I've replaced it once in seven years or so with one just like it....




I use it very regularly - at least a couple times a week.
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Old 11-22-2014, 06:07 PM   #13
rexster314
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One thing to remember is how much space on your counter you have. If you have to put it out, use it, then put it up, you won't use it. Only if it stays out on a counter will you really benefit from it.
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Old 11-22-2014, 09:28 PM   #14
Danado
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The food saver at Costco is offering a manufacturers instant rebate. I picked one up for $119. The regular price is about $150.
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Old 11-22-2014, 10:29 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FatCoyote View Post
I love mine, I've replaced it once in seven years or so with one just like it....
Amazon.com: FoodSaver GameSaver Deluxe Vacuum Sealing Kit: Sports & Outdoors
I use it very regularly - at least a couple times a week.
This is the unit I have, and have had it for a couple of years with no problems. When I get a shipment of ground beef or boneless skinless chicken breasts, I may put up from 40 to 80 bags in one day. Take your time and it will do a great job for you. I buy Weston bags from Amazon and save a ton over the Foodsaver bags and rolls. Have yet to have a failure once I figured out how to operate the machine.

Blessings,

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