vacuum sealing and managing frozen food.
I am considering purchasing a vacuum sealer. I am considering either the vacmaster vp112s or vp120. I am trying to find out if there is bag material above where the sealer creates the seal. I am looking for 1 bag to see if I can braille on it if there is material above the seal. For someone without sight, all bags in the freezer feel cold and there isn’t really a way to distinguish what is in a bag. If you attempt to feel shapes in the bags you loose feeling in your fingers and give up rather quickly. You then have to wait for sighted help. I’m looking for 1 bag to see if this is even a possibility.
Hey Gery, on the bags that these machines use, there can be material above the seal. It depends on how you place the bag in the unit to be sealed, but you could seal it all the way at the top, or push the bag far enough up that you could have a few inches above the seal to work with.
I’ll send you a few sample bags so you can test it out and try and put braille on a few bags.
I have no idea if it will work or not, but I’d be glad to send a few to try it out.
(I have your address on file from previous orders, and I can ship something out to the same address as your last order if that is fine with you)
As far as which VacMaster model might be better, they are very similar is function. The VP120 is just a bit more of a compact unit and it includes an automatic lid that closes and opens on its own, but it is a bit more expensive. If it was me choosing between the two, I’d base it off of the size and if the smaller version would be better or the larger for an ever so slightly bigger bag, plus then choose whether the automatic lid is a positive or negative option for you. Some people love the automatic lid, and some people don’t. It is really just personal preference, but I don’t think you would be unhappy with either option.
@gerygaub That would be gret Austin. I was terribly disappointed in the other company I was dealing with concerning the vacuum sealer. The address you have on file would totally work and that is awesome that you would send a few for me to check out whether or not it will work. Like your site says, family business. You guys are totally awesome to work with. I anxiously await the bags. Thanks!!
@austin Austin, I received the bags. Great news, I wrote using braille on 3 or 4 bags and put them in the freezer. I checked a few times last night and the braille was still there. I also placed a label on 1 bag using dymo tape. It seemed to stick well. I plan on leaving the bags in the freezer all weekend to see what happens. If I still have label with or braille or braille on the bag after the weekend I’ll purchase the vp112s. My thinking is that I don’t need the automatic lid. Just one more thing to go wrong.
That is awesome! I’m glad the bags seems to be working out for you!
If you need anything else, just let us know!
I did it. I purchased the vacmaster vp112s. I went with the 112 because I don’t care for the auto lid on the 120. Motor sounds strained. One less mechanical thing to go wrong. The braille on the vac bags held up and I look forward to know what my frozen bags contain for the first time in my life. As usual the people at walton’s were extremely helpfull. Austin sent me sample bags to try and I have also been working with Jonathon to get my hot dogs right among other things. I found the 112s cheaper but the people didn’t want to assist at all. The amount of money wasn’t that much and these days customer service is lacking in a lot of places…I am totally happy but can’t wait until the sealer arrives tomorrow. Thanks walton’s for all you do. Another issue is that I am totally blind but not one of the Walton’s staff said wait you can’t do that you can’t see. I assist my brother with meat processing and even go on the hunt for deer. I also buy in bulk and freeze. I grind my own meat with a weston #32 grinder, mix with the weston meat mixer, and stuff with a waltons 7 pound stuffer. I smoke with a smoke hollow 44 propane smoker and a master built 30 inch electric smoker. I really hope that one day I can afford the smokers that Waltons sells. I think it is the pk100. Now I can’t wait to store things using the vacmaster vp112s.
@gerygaub You are going to love the VP112s, they are good little machines and they offer a great bang for your buck. A really nice thing about these machines is that the bags for a chambered machine are so much less expensive that you can make up the cost difference in the machines fairly quickly by what you save on bags!
Ok so the vacmaster vp112s is arriving tomorrow. I can’t wait. I have a few questions about its operation. I am aware that you can change the seal time and the vac time. Once these are changed are they stored in a memory even if the machine is unplugged? Since I can’t see I need to know if there is a way to get the times and vac strength back to say factory defaults so that I know where I am. Is this possible or will I just need to remember what they are set on from the last time I used the unit? ALso, what is the size bag for the chamber sealewrs closest to a pint, quart, and gallon?
@gerygaub It appears as if the settings stay in the machine after being turned off. There has got to be an easy way to do a factory reset though so we are going to contact the manufacturer and I will get back to you with an answer as soon as I have it!
For a Pint it would be 6" x 10"
For a Quart it would be 8" x 12"
For a Gallon it would be 12" x 12"
@gerygaub We heard back from the manufacturer and there is no restore factory settings function. They said that “no matter how long the unit is powered off or unplugged it will keep the exact settings as last time used once powered on”
The best I can think is that you set it to 70 for vac and 4 seconds for seal everytime you are done using it (those are standard settings) and that way you would at least know where to go from there?
@jonathon Thanks for trying Jonathon. Many wouln’t even do that. I’ll just write down the possible settings and write the last one that I used so that the next time I use it I’ll know where it was set. Some times there are no little tricks that make these things easy but you tried. Some devices can be set to defaults and some do this when they are unplugged and plugged in again. Another thing is the bags are cheap enough, I can make a few to see what is happening and adjust the unit accordinly. Didn’t get this far in life by giving up always some way to get it done. I’m planning on trying the hot dogs this weekend. I am going to use the collagen casing and I’ll post on how it goes. Thanks again.
@gerygaub Anything we can do to help, if I ever come across a sequence that will reset factory settings to this I will let you know!
Good luck on the hot dogs, I look forward to seeing the pics!
As I. push the carriage forward the slices get bigger and bigger even if I push only the carriage.
Weekly Blog Post - Octopus and Squid, Vacuum Packing
Find out what's going on at Walton's and Meatgistics this week. We will have a loose schedule for soon to be released videos, what we are working on long-term and maybe a few quick tips and tricks that are on our mind!What Videos are being released soon?
Depending on what you see as soon we will have the almost complete first round of Meatgistics University Classes released. We have broken everything down into these categories; Meat Processing Equipment, Seasoning and Additives, Fresh Sausage, Cured Sausage, Jerky, Sausage Casings, Deli Meats, Smoked Meats, Cured Whole Muscle Meats, and Specialty Sausages. Each of these topics will have multiple entry-level classes covering topics like the type of casing to use, equipment needed and a basic processing class where appropriate.What Projects are we looking ahead at?
We are going to be doing two new Will it BBQ’s, hopefully, this week where we try BBQ’ing Squid and Octopus! The squid was a suggestion by Bob Zambutto through Walton’s Inc Facebook account! I had been wanting to do both of these for a while and when I went to our local Asian Grocery Store (Tai Binh for anyone local to Wichita, KS) and they had lots of options for both, they have almost anything and I got a few more weird ideas while I was there! Anyway, I picked up some baby octopus and a full size one, some small squid and two large ones as well. I am excited and nervous to see how this goes if nothing else it should be fun to watch!What’s on our Mind?
Did you know that you shouldn’t vacuum pack Mushrooms or Garlic? I was reading a Vacmaster VP120 instruction manual the other day and I saw an interesting note that said not to vacuum pack Garlic or Mushrooms! I had no idea that you shouldn’t do this so I thought I would share that with meatgistics readers to let you know not to do it as well. Apparently, they both are prone to bacteria that will continue to grow in oxygen-free environments. I was hoping it was something more impressive than that but it is good information to have.New Products
22" X 24" Collagen Sheets This are typically used for larger whole muscle cuts of meat, like when you are making prosciutto, capocollo, or other dried hams. This is an item that we have had lots of requests for over the years so we were happy to finally find a reliable and reputable source for it.
Thanks for the response!
I think a video on processed celery would be incredible. The only place I have been able to find celery powder as a cure was from “The Sausage Maker”, they have a Facebook page. It was expensive, designed only for sausages, and wasn’t packaged well.
As for the tackiness, good idea with the cornstarch! There are a bunch of big brands with zero additives that were able to achieve the soft texture with no tackiness, so I’m thinking it has to be in the processing. I read an article where someone at KRAVE mentioned a couple details about how they process their jerky. He said they first inject the meat, then cook the whole pieces, then slice, then marinate, then dry. I have messed around with the idea behind this process a lot. Injecting with brine, sous-viding at a variety of temperatures and times, slicing, marinating, and drying. Decent results, but to be honest the high sugar method you introduced to me has seemed to have better results.
Anyway, I will keep trying to figure this out and will definitely keep you guys posted if I make any headway. In the meantime, if there is anything else you think might be worth testing, please let me know! It would be great to try and perfect this process together.
@bob-s-meatgistics I moved one of my first pork butts into the oven and my whole house smelled like smoke. My wife did not stop complaining for a week until the smell was gone from both the house and the oven. I finish all my cooks outside. If you wrap it to speed up the cook you may want to unwrap it for the last hour to put the bark back on it.
@jonathon I am definitely going to purchase and follow the steps you’ve post, thank you sir! Additionally, if anyone has recipes, please share. I’ll try them all and post what my family thought of each. Thank you all, this is a very cool and educational blog, glad I found it wish it was years ago! Thanks again.