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Best food dehydrator?

Discussion in 'Preparedness & Survival' started by Modeler, Mar 31, 2013.

  1. Modeler

    Modeler Molalla, Oregon Soccer Fan

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    Just like the title says, what is the best stand-alone home food dehydrator? The next step in our preparedness journey is food preservation. We have canning supplies, but no food dehydrator.

    What do you all use?
     
  2. Puddin99

    Puddin99 Scappoose, OR Member

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    We have one of these:
    Amazon.com: Excalibur 3900B 9 Tray Deluxe Dehydrator, Black: Kitchen & Dining

    This version has some advantages over the stacked tray. A couple of advantages are the trays can be individually added where as the stacked ones you need to seperate the whole thing. The fan in this model prevents cross-contamination when doing multiple different things. It helps prevent mixing flavor and smells.

    You can read the reviews.
     
  3. rocky3

    rocky3 oregon coast Active Member

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    We have Nesco circular dehydrator and it works fine...1/5th the cost of Excalibur.
    Fan and heater are on the bottom of dehydrator
     
  4. jimwsea

    jimwsea Vancouver, Washington state Active Member

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    I agree with rocky3. I bought a Nesco circular with a thermostat from Craigslist and have dried fruits, veggies and herbs. My hiking friends liked the dried baked potatoes with cajun spice. My favorite is dried watermelon.
     
  5. Modeler

    Modeler Molalla, Oregon Soccer Fan

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    After posting this my wife and I were listening to the "Smart Prepper Show" and he recommended the Excalibur. Looks like I've got some saving up to do!
     
  6. jimwsea

    jimwsea Vancouver, Washington state Active Member

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    I tried looking up "smart prepper show" and got no hits. I was just interested in who sponsors that show.
     
  7. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    here ya go
    [video=youtube;oVTcnCuX2Qc]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVTcnCuX2Qc[/video]
     
  8. erudne

    erudne The Pie Matrix PPL Say Sleeping W/Your Rifle Is A bad Thing? Bronze Supporter

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    Just a wild guess on my part
    Convection Oven
     
  9. brianjronk

    brianjronk Marysville, WA Active Member

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    We first started out with a Ronco 5 - tray dehydrator, but used it so much we were eating stuff faster than we can dry it.

    About a year ago we got the Excalibur 3900 (like Puddin99 has) and love it. Biggest difference we liked was the temperature regulation and obviously the increased capacity. We do apple, pineapple, and kale chips often and recently been experimenting with fruit leather, which is fantastic and actually made of fruit unlike the stuff at the store.

    If you're up for it, you could always make one of your own. I know there's a few how-tos out there and then you could make it as big as you want.

    But my recommendation is the Excalibur, you get what you pay for...

    Here's a link to my wife's recipe for French Onion Kale Chips...seriously awesome stuff:
    Schoolhouse Ronk: French Onion Kale Chips
     
  10. Modeler

    Modeler Molalla, Oregon Soccer Fan

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    My bad.... It's actually called the "Wise Prepper Show", it's a radio show on KXL sponsored by the Portland Preparedness Center.http://www.kxl.com/pages/wise_prepper

    He doesn't actually sell the Excalibur, but he recommended it.
     
  11. knuckle Head

    knuckle Head southeast Well-Known Member

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    Hey these electricity free things are really great, I have an old 5 tray electric than that when I do use it I try to do a cold or chilly day, that way the heat generated will not go to a total waste, because of the extra juice these things draw.

    When I get a place with more room, I am definitely going to remember these and build something like one these posted.

    BTW, I sent the links to relative who lives in a very rural area who was getting ready to buy a dehydrator and him and his wife said they are going to build one of these instead.

    Anything you can build that will not keep costing you $$$ everytime you use it is great,
     
  12. lowly monk

    lowly monk Beaverton, Oregon. Just a guy. Bronze Supporter

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    I use different systems but the sun is free.
     
  13. jimwsea

    jimwsea Vancouver, Washington state Active Member

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    Modeler, what's your price range? Maybe this discussion can be narrowed down.
     
  14. Modeler

    Modeler Molalla, Oregon Soccer Fan

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    We plan on having it for a long time and we have a few months to save up for it; I only want to buy it once. We're probably willing to spend $4-500 if it's a rock-solid unit.
     
  15. Modeler

    Modeler Molalla, Oregon Soccer Fan

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    That's super-cool! I hate admit this, but in the time it would take me to build one I could work enough to pay for an Excalibur or two....

    Besides, I can only have so many of those tall, skinny buildings in the yard and I'd prefer to have a smoker instead ;)
     
  16. 1stklass

    1stklass salem oregon Well-Known Member

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    Outhouse and Smoker? what other tall skinny buildings do you have in your yard??? LOL I was looking at a small Solar box on some prepper show my wife wanted me to look at, couple sheets of glass and a square plywood frame and a couple hours of time. i dont think you have to go quite as elaborate as that guy has there although the bigger the better if you have room, the one i saw was 2ft by 3ft maybe? and they were using it to cook a pig!
     
  17. Modeler

    Modeler Molalla, Oregon Soccer Fan

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    No outhouse yet, but maybe in the future. I'd like to build a smoker for sure. I'd prefer an electric food dryer to use in the kitchen. We all have our reasons ;-)
     
  18. erudne

    erudne The Pie Matrix PPL Say Sleeping W/Your Rifle Is A bad Thing? Bronze Supporter

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    Back in the day my Hawaiian friend used a bug free tray that he would pull up on his roof with a rope from the opposite side and tie off to a tree to cure his marinated tuna, it was an old school Hawaiian method that kept the smell away from the house and maximized sun exposure as well as protected from dogs and vermin. He dried allot of fish this way for his entire family, Jerked Tuna is a staple in the south seas (My friend lived in So. Cal.)