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Thread: vaccum seal machine

  1. #1
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    Default vaccum seal machine

    Hello all-- new to this site but thought this to be the best place to ask this question. What about vaccum sealers. I refuse to pay someone 1.25 a pound to vaccum pack for me. BUT-- now what to buy. What should i be looking for. Cosco has the profession $1000 machine -- can not afford that. but also have two others. one appears to come with 3 11' by 18 ft rolls and a few quart and gallon bags the other less material but less price. Not real sure if what bell and whistle to discount and what to pay attention to.

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    Find two or three guys and go in on at Alaska butcher supply for 2300 alot of money but do what you have to too make it happen. I found seven guys to go in with me and we do our halibut and meat in it and it is awesome.

  3. #3

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    Stay away from from the foodsaver machines. They are junk and don't last long at all.

    I bought the vacmaster 215 from Costco. So far I am pleased with the performance of this chamber vac, although i have not used the more expensive alternative from the butcher supply shop. I'll be happy with my purchase if it proves to be durable.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    I'd second the idea of going in with some friends and/or family on a more expensive chamber sealer. My wife and I used a higher end foodsaver for years. It worked OK for us, but inevitably the seal or the bag itself would fail after a while. We could expect fish to last about 6 months without damage and meat for maybe a bit longer. With the newer sealer our fish remains good at least a year, and the meat...well, I don't know what the time limit is, as it's always consumed by then. As an added bonus, the bags are WAY cheaper than foodsaver bags. Foodsaver sealers are cheaper, but in the long run you end up spending a small fortune on bags if you do much fishing and hunting. The more expensive sealers cost a lot up front, but we've already saved hundreds of that increased purchase price in bags, not to mention what we save in lost/freezer burnt food. If you can split the cost three or four ways, it's really not all that bad.

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    What are you willing to pay? Chamber vac bags are as low as or lower than 10 cents a piece. Food saver bags are at least 50 or more. Not to mention you have to get a food saver every two to three year for an average sportsman. More often if you are hardcore... Do the math, save pennies and make an investment.
    TrappHouseOutdoors@HuntFishAK

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    There is a new model on the market Vac-Master it is the 112 I believe. I researched it a good bit and bought it for about 700.00 and it is a chamber vac sealer. I did a good amount of fish and a moose this summer, what sold me on it was i used buddies a few years ago and the moose we did then is still good in the freezer. I have gone thru several food savers over the years and the same old thing always happens with it the seal breaks and fish is burned.

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    I have been researching the VP112 a great deal and am about 90% sure it will be the way we go for food storage.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vi5WM...e_gdata_player

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    In the past, we used to wrap the meats with saran style wrap and then wrap again with butcher paper. For those more cost conscious, I didn't think the stock roll of freezer paper and saran wrap was too expensive... nor recall a significant difference between that method and the food saver.

    I've had a foodsaver for years. I'm waiting for the foodsaver to burn out before upgrading. We did have some difficulty with the seals ... but now remove them after use. Since the seals aren't compressed for storage, the foodsaver has not had a problem sealing.

    I agree that the bags are expensive and overpriced. Just as HP made a lot of their money on ink cartridges ... foodsaver probably makes a healthy share selling those bags in non-bulk. We switched to the sausage bags/ring system for the ground meats. I believe the sausage bag/ring system worked out to about 1/10th the price as foodsaver, was faster than food saver, and we have not noticed a decrease in meat quality when compared to the foodsaver.

    As for meat going bad ... I share my harvests ... to minimize meat carry over from year to year.

  9. #9
    Member wykee5's Avatar
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    Buy the VP 215, and never think about it again. You will quickly forget about the cost of the machine, and you will thank yourself for years to come. Once you own a chamber machine, you will wonder how you ever got by without it, and why you didn't buy one sooner.

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    I spent $200 ish on a foodsaver "gamesaver" and regret it every day, I usually take my fish to captain jacks $1 or so per lb is reasonable for how good they seal up the fish and a small price to pay to know my fish that i put so much into wont be going bad...

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    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    I have been looking for something to replace the horrible food saver, and found the VP112 on sale at Quality Matters. A $200 to $300 savings over other retailers.

    Also nearly all their vacuum stuff is on sale if you want bags or a high end sealer.
    http://www.qualitymatters.com/Vacuum-Sealers-s/54.htm

    However, they don't ship to AK. So I set up an account with Aloha Forwarding so that they can mail it up to me parcel post. I used their code to get free shipping on two gross of bags and the VP112 to the Aloha office in Denver and then pay Aloha for the USPS cost plus a few bucks for their service. So we will see in a couple of weeks how this process works.

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Looks like the cost of shipping that way would bring the cost up to about $750 which is pretty darn close to the $799 at Sportsmans warehouse (if I recall the price correctly)

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    Default How Long of Fillets?

    I've been kicking around the idea of getting a chamber sealer. However, one thing always gives me pause. About 1/3 or so of the fillets I get out of a limit of dipnetting at Chitina, I like to leave whole. You know, those that I do the absolute best on, so that when people come to dinner, especially outsiders, I get to drag one of those Fred Meyer-quality cuts out of the freezer? I call them my 'presentation fillets'.

    Anyway, unless you get the very largest (and most expensive) chamber sealers, it seems that they are not long enough to handle that fillet. Or since it's a chamber, do I simply 'crease, crinkle, fold' the bag with fillet to get it to fit in the chamber.

    For what it's worth, I always vac seal fish with my current food saver, and saran- and butcher-wrap the red meat. Red meat froze like this lasts literally for years. You know, the stuff you find at the bottom of the freezer and think 'dang that's old'.

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    Member thewhop2000's Avatar
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    Alaskadream. If I understand you correctly you fillet out fish and them vacuum pack the two fillets from that one fish. A trick I have used to save on bags is once I have my two fillets laid out to seal, I put the meat side up and cut the meat only halfway down the fillet from from dorsal fin to belly. Do nut cut the skin!! You then just fold up the fish and then seal. Once you go to defrost it, you just unfold it and you have a whole fillet again for looks and cooking. I buy the continues rolls for my foodsaver and make my own bags because some fillets are bigger than others. Didn't mean to hijack the thread but was just answering your question.
    If a dipnetter dips a fish and there is no one around to see/hear it, Did he really dip?

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    Thanks Whop. I guess I didn't think about that. I saw a guy doing that very thing this year, in Chitina, in fact. He said he was happier with the results of packing them skin-to-skin in his vac bags. That's how I vac'd a majority of my fillets, but, like I said, I liked to keep some whole. They look nice in the package, too, and I don't know why, but I really like the looks of them like that. I didn't even think that I can simply "unfold" the ones I've cut in half once defrosted and have, for all intents and purposes, a whole fillet, ready for the grill or oven.

    I too only use the continuous rolls, the individual bags seem to be more expensive, and don't ever seem to be the right size. Thanks again.

  16. #16

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    After seeing the VP210 my buddy bought right here in anchorage walmart, we went out and bought one. $999. we took it to chitna, packaged 157 fish, then to valdez and packaged our limit of silvers, all in two days. Not one hickup. buy walmarts appliance warrenty, $80 for 3 years i think.

  17. #17
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    just a side note, the pin bones in a salmon fillet will puncture bags, more often than the seal failing. We have been cutting bags to lay an extra piece of plastic over the boney section of a fillet, and it seems to have really helped the longevity of the bags. Actually found at ABS the other day they sell rolls of "bone saver" to protect the bags from the pin bones comming thru. Actually another thought that i have had, and we do with all of our clams is to add water to the bag. dont know how that method would do with fish though, specifically in the thawing state.

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    Plastic wrap prior to vacuum packing works to protect from bone punctures, too. Nothing fancy, just a layer for protection.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LuJon View Post
    Looks like the cost of shipping that way would bring the cost up to about $750 which is pretty darn close to the $799 at Sportsmans warehouse (if I recall the price correctly)
    The order is coming in three boxes USPS parcel post. Free shipping from the retailer to the forwarder using UPS ground then $77.47 for all forwarder handling and USPS parcel post costs. USPS parcel postage is $61.52 (= $1 a pound). Total cost for the VP112 with shipping is $676.47.

    No instant gratification for picking something up at the store, though. Kind of hard to justify $120 for that feeling.

  20. #20
    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    That isn't too bad. Their dial a quote for shipping through aloha listed the price at $150 which is double what it appears you were able to get. While I agree $120 is worth it. When it gets to the point that savings on a big ticket item is only $50 under a local store I prefer putting money back into the local economy and NOT having to stand in the post office line!

    It also helps that I have a $35 off coupon to sportsmans at the moment.

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