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Old 12-11-2009, 06:56 AM
Exit Strategy Exit Strategy is offline
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Default Which vacuum sealer should I buy?



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Hey friends,

I am having a terrible problem with pantry moths getting into my food preps. They can bore through carboard to get to the food. They've even gotten under the lids of peanut butter jars.

I've tried almost every precaution but stuff like flour and other powdery items are hard to protect. I checked into mylar bags and food grade pails but they are waaay expensive (at least around here) and I am considering a vacuum sealer to parcel stuff out into small lots. I found the Rival (Sunbeam) vacuum sealer and another brand called "Foodsaver"

Any opinions on these? I'll probably buy a few pails for large stocks but there are a lot of smaller items that a sealer would be perfect for.

Thanks!
C.
Old 12-11-2009, 07:00 AM
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Many time the moths,are in the product already.
Vaccuum sealing things, will cut off the air and stop the eggs from hatching.
Old 12-11-2009, 11:27 AM
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I don't have any experience with the Rival brand sealer, so can't advise you there. Personally, I have a FoodSaver ("GameSaver Pro" version) that I bought a few years ago for a REALLY good price. I use it all the time for sealing my preps. In vacuum sealing, I have found that the weakest link in the process is the bags themselves. After sealing, make sure that there is nothing sharp to snag or poke holes in the bags or you WILL lose your seal. If that happens, seal in a new bag.

Oh, and I personally prefer to buy the rolls, rather than the bags, as I can customize the lengths to better fit the items that I'm sealing, and avoid waste.
Old 12-11-2009, 12:00 PM
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Thank you for the replies!

Should I include a dessicant in the bag to take care of any ambient moisture?
Someone suggested Tilia Food Savers. I'll google them and check it out.
Old 12-11-2009, 12:38 PM
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Include an oxygen absrber. Bugs need 02 to survive.

www.dehydrate2store.com is one of my favorite dehydrating sites. She recommends 3 mil or thicker bags. I have a Food Saver and their bags are a little thin and I lose the seal sometimes.

It's all about the quality of the bags
Old 12-11-2009, 04:23 PM
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If you have the room in your freezer, freeze the sealed bags for a minimum of 24 hours. The freezing process will kill off any eggs or larvae in the food.
Old 12-11-2009, 11:38 PM
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I have a Foodsaver II; see here and here for some tips I posted based on my experience using it. I'm quite pleased with its performance, and with the posting elsewhere of where to get bag material cheaper [scroll to about halfway down the page], I anticipate running it a lot more often and not just for food.
Old 12-12-2009, 09:56 AM
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I have a foodsaver, can't recall the model at the moment. Mine sets upright and folds down to use. I had problems with seals breifly, but then I made sure my ends were completely flat and the seal area didn't get liquid on it.

I got it for her for christmas last year. At first she was not amused...at all. After explaining the reasoning, now you couldn't pry it away from her. It makes short work of those 98 cent a pound boneless pork logs, as i call them, and lots of other bulk foods.

I also recommend the rolls as stated before due to making your own size bags. definately saves $$ than using their pre-made bags.

As pricey as it was I bought a combo box with 3 large and 2 smaller rolls at sams for $30 a while back. In the long run it was way cheaper than buying by the roll. You can sometimes check different walmarts and they will have combo packs too.

Good luck, let us know what you end up with!
Old 12-12-2009, 01:44 PM
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I'm a Tilia use and I'm happy with it.

For bugs getting into things, you might try a sprinkle of food grade diatomaceous earth. They put it in Bisquick and mixes to keep bugs out. It's totally safe for consumption, harmless, organic and might even provide a few trace minerals. Just make sure it's the food grade version. The pool filter stuff will kill you outright!
Old 12-15-2009, 07:13 PM
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For Dry storage, perhaps vacuum sealing is ok.

For freezing I wouldn't even bother with a vacuum system unless you are prepared to check and reseal often. I have found in many cases the high end bags lose their seal for any number of reasons.

At this point, I wrap the food i want to freeze in heavy duty aluminum foil, and then place them in freezer bags. I suck out as much air as I can with a straw, although its not critical, I just do it for less volume. If you wrap it correctly, you don't have to worry about it again. You can also re-use the bags if you like...
Old 12-15-2009, 09:35 PM
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A foodsaver works fine for me. It really sucks.... I mean it's really powerful and makes a strong vacuum. I buy most of our stuff from yardsales and thrift shops and I have found three of them now for next to nothing. The internals are almost always interchangeable, so even a broke foodsaver has value to us survival / frugal types.

There are some foodsavers that sense the vacuum and seal according to pressure, then there are some foodsavers that seal after a set time regardless of vacuum strength. I much prefer the ones that seal only after a set time instead of vacuum strength. They are much easier to manipulate manually, especially if you are using weird bags or sealing liquids. I think the 1050 is one that seals according to vacuum strength, it's till good for dry stuff but not my favorite.

You can also get yourself some expensive attachments for the foodsaver to seal canning jars of all sizes. That will not only keep the bugs out, but rats and mice as well.
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Old 12-16-2009, 01:04 AM
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IMHO, Food Saver, hands down. Own 2 of them. 75% of my dehydrated stores are in Mason jars, for which the Food Saver provides a sealing attachment.
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Old 12-16-2009, 12:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Philosopher View Post
IMHO, Food Saver, hands down. Own 2 of them. 75% of my dehydrated stores are in Mason jars, for which the Food Saver provides a sealing attachment.
FOOD SAVER bought mine off ebay for 38 dollars including the shipping. Buy your bags in rolls as then you make them to your size and needs. I buy both 8" and 11" rolls(16' long have seen 50' ones on ebay)

I have had it for almost 6 months now and can not belive how I survived this long with out it. No more freezer burn on meats, Dehydrated veggies stay well sealed in the jars http://dehydrate2store.com/ great ideas here!

Food Saver has saved me boo cou space in my larder. (have even used it to seal up my 5 gallon mylar bags too).
Just my 2 cents.
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Old 12-16-2009, 12:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hossmiester View Post
I have had it for almost 6 months now and can not belive how I survived this long with out it. No more freezer burn on meats, Dehydrated veggies stay well sealed in the jars http://dehydrate2store.com/ great ideas here! Hoss
I got my first one, still in use, in 1992! Any appliance that's still working after 17 years is worth the money. My second one, with a few more features, is 12 years old.
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Old 12-19-2009, 04:18 PM
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Make sure you get one with an attachment to seal regular canning jars. I have found hundreds of ways to use it. Great for dry goods, dehydrated vegies and fruits, vitamins and medicines, and you can marinade meat in about 2 min and have it taste like overnight marinade ( when you suck the air out the liquid gets into the meat).
Old 12-20-2009, 12:00 AM
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Best way I found to seal canning jars it to put the jar inside a Food Saver canister. the smaller the canister the better. Put the lid on finger tight. Vacuum out the canister. When you let the vacuum out of the canister, listen for the ping. Screw the lid down tighter.
Old 12-20-2009, 12:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SgtBooker44 View Post
Best way I found to seal canning jars it to put the jar inside a Food Saver canister. the smaller the canister the better. Put the lid on finger tight. Vacuum out the canister. When you let the vacuum out of the canister, listen for the ping. Screw the lid down tighter.
If the inner canning jar has a vacuum inside, and the lid is sealed, is the ring really necessary?
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