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Thread: What vacuum sealer and grinder to get?

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    Default What vacuum sealer and grinder to get?

    I'm really tired of fumbling around with the seal-a-meal vacuum sealers that don't really work. I'm ready for an upgrade but not sure what to get. I'd like something that can take a lot of volume (like a moose) and has an easy way to get bags (like Amazon), unless it can use any bag on the market. What brand and model do you guys like, and where did you buy it?

    Grinder- I'm looking for something that is reliable. What do you guys like best, and where did you buy it?

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    If you want the best, go talk to the folks at Alaska Butcher Supply and they'll get you set up. We bought one of their sealers some years ago, and it has gone through at least 10 moose, 15 caribou, a number of sheep and deer, hundreds of salmon, rockfish, and halibut, and is still going strong. The grinder we got from them is dynamite as well. Can't recall the exact models at the moment, but those folks sell quality equipment and back it up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    If you want the best, go talk to the folks at Alaska Butcher Supply and they'll get you set up. We bought one of their sealers some years ago, and it has gone through at least 10 moose, 15 caribou, a number of sheep and deer, hundreds of salmon, rockfish, and halibut, and is still going strong. The grinder we got from them is dynamite as well. Can't recall the exact models at the moment, but those folks sell quality equipment and back it up.
    Thanks for the info. I gave them a call, they have everything I need. I didn't realize how expensive the machines were!!! I'll probably get it, but it will push back a 4-wheeler purchase by a year.

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    Member aces-n-eights's Avatar
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    I got one of these, a VacMaster VP215...

    http://www.amazon.com/VacMaster-VP21...rds=vac+master

    ...a few years ago and have not regretted it one bit. Love the thing. They are spendy - i think i paid $999 at Costco in Anchorage - but it will be the last one you buy. The one i linked to on Amazon is $899 and it ships free with Prime, which is pretty amazing considering it weights 100lbs! There is also a VP210 for a bit less money, but the 215 has an rotary oil vacuum pump where you can change the oil. The VP210 has a dry vacuum pump and wears out faster and is not as efficient. Pay the money to get the better one - VP215.

    Sorry, can't help you on a grinder...
    English is an odd language. It can understood through tough thorough thought, though.

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    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Love my 1hp cabelas grinder, eats alot and quickly too. Hard to beat it for $500-.
    Ak butcher has nice stuff and Butch is a great guy, but we couldn't justify spending more on a meat grinder.

    Now I need to pony up and purchase a sealer someday!
    Bk

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    Thanks for the Amazon link I'll check that one out. And it really ships to Alaska? That's surprising. My only concern is when I use Amazon, all my boxes come in smashed and busted. It's like every person along the way is drop kicked it until it gets to my PO box.

    I'll check out cabelas too and see what grinders they have.

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    Member akfisherman's Avatar
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    You can get the vacmaster at Sam's. It's great I've had mine for years. I put it in the motorhome and haul it around. It will use any bag and its adjustable for pressure and seal.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    What are ya...a fisherman...or a catcherman?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Longtrek86 View Post
    Thanks for the Amazon link I'll check that one out. And it really ships to Alaska? That's surprising. My only concern is when I use Amazon, all my boxes come in smashed and busted. It's like every person along the way is drop kicked it until it gets to my PO box.
    If you have signed up for Amazon Prime - $99 a year, i think - most items ship free. The vac-packer has the Prime logo so it should ship free to Alaska. I have ordered several bulky items and they have arrived in perfect condition. Might be worth a call to be sure, but the ad says it will ship free if you are a Prime member.
    English is an odd language. It can understood through tough thorough thought, though.

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    I ordered the 215 from amazon and it shipped free by fedex. Think I paid like $850 for it last Nov. It came in great shape and I have been using it a lot and love it.

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    Member cod's Avatar
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    Well, finally broke down and bought the VP215 from Costco a few days ago to replace my half arsed Costco seal a meal job I had (and hated). Family picked it up w some extra bags for it on their way down for a visit and some fishing out of Homer. We processed about 12 (20 pound) halibut and 14 silver fillets thru it.
    This is gonna make processing my fish and game so much easier. There is no wondering if the bag is properly sealed anymore. Great product. Thanks for the tips on this thread, guys!
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    It's interesting that people have had problems.... I think we've had our old Food Saver ProII for over 15 years an it's been great...(knock on wood). Tons of fish and game through it in that amount of time.
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by 4merguide View Post
    It's interesting that people have had problems.... I think we've had our old Food Saver ProII for over 15 years an it's been great...(knock on wood). Tons of fish and game through it in that amount of time.
    True to a point, but the chamber sealers are just a huge step up in several ways. I had a cg-15 from cabelas for the last 9 years and never a legitimate problem, finally got a vp215 this year and the biggest difference is the almost fault proof sealing system, the ability to seal wet meat well and with absolutely no mess, and the fact that one man can bag and pack as fast as it will take it is priceless when a moose or a mess of halibut are waiting to be packed and frozen. I no longer have to baby sit the sucker type vacuum sealer and press out bubbles as it sucks the air out, no muss no fuss.

    And, my cabelas bags were 30 cents a piece minimum, compared to 8 cents a bag for the bags for the vp215. The others work, the vp215 and other chamber variants......just work lots and lots better.

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    Member cod's Avatar
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    I read somewhere on a thread that a certain sealer was able to use multiple brands of bags. Can someone remember or tell me, was the VP 215 able to use multiple brand bags? I've got several left over from my old sealer. Thanks.
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    Quote Originally Posted by cod View Post
    I read somewhere on a thread that a certain sealer was able to use multiple brands of bags. Can someone remember or tell me, was the VP 215 able to use multiple brand bags? I've got several left over from my old sealer. Thanks.
    I prepped some Food Saver bags (12"x16' rolls) with my MiniPack 45 to be used later with a Food Saver and had no issues. I did lower the seal time on for the thinner bags from 1.8 seconds to 1.2 and it worked great.

    So as long as the model of chamber vac you get is able to customize the seal time you should be able to use 3 or 4 mil bags.
    When all else fails...ask your old-man.


    AKArcher

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    I recently used cabelas bags in my vp215 with no problems as well, did not ajdust any settings either.

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    I will second 'Alaska Butcher Supplies'! Yes you may pay a little more, but the items we have bought from them all have been well worth the cost. Besides they are local and if you have an issue they are there to take care of it.

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    Member cod's Avatar
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    I did another nice load of halibut in my VP215 the other day. It's so much nicer and cleaner than the old seal a meal job. No messy juices on everything. No worries of bags sealing properly.No holding the bar down. Am kicking myself for not going to the sealing 'chamber' type sealers yrs ago. I grabbed a rag to wipe the machine off and not a speck or drop of fluids anywhere.
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    Member AKFishOn's Avatar
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    After going through 5 or 6 food savers I went with the Cabelas CG-15 vaccum sealer, it has not been flawless but a good investment for the money. I bought a second one at Trustworthy in Soldotna a few years back as I wanted a second one at the cabin. I has packaged thousands of fish and several moose and other critters. A good deal for the money. Being a Cabelas fan I purchased their 1.5 hp meat grinder as well, it will last forever. Loaned it out once and they broke the augar shaft but $60 in a repair piece and back in business. I have never had any issues myself with the grinder and not sure why or how they broke it. I'd love to go into AK Butcher Supplies and upgrade but both these went purchased (some time back) were less than $900 with shipping.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aces-n-eights View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by bkmail View Post
    Love my 1hp cabelas grinder, eats alot and quickly too. Hard to beat it for $500-.
    Excellent choices! While others do more with less, I relax and enjoy a beer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cod View Post
    I did another nice load of halibut in my VP215 the other day. It's so much nicer and cleaner than the old seal a meal job. No messy juices on everything. No worries of bags sealing properly.No holding the bar down. Am kicking myself for not going to the sealing 'chamber' type sealers yrs ago. I grabbed a rag to wipe the machine off and not a speck or drop of fluids anywhere.
    I have to agree, as soon as I bought my VP215 I was second guessing spending the money until I used it, then I instantly felt better. The quality of the process in every aspect is so much better than a sucking machine of any quality.

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