Which new dehydrator?
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Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Which new dehydrator? on 06/22/2009 17:33:53 MDT Print View

I'm convinced that most of my dehydrating screw ups (so far) can be blamed on my dehydrator. I'm thinking one that has a time and a thermostat would make a huge difference. Any recommendations? The ability to add trays would be nice, but not essential. And I'm trying to stay under $200. Thanks.

Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Love my Excalibur Dehydrator on 06/22/2009 17:43:42 MDT Print View

Here is what I found online:

http://www.harvestessentials.com/excalibur.html?gclid=CP3S__SFn5sCFSMSagodwDrlCA

$150.00ish with out a timer, 5 trays
$106.00ish with 4 trays

http://www.excaliburdehydrator.com/5-Tray-SMALL-GARDEN-Excalibur-26-hour-Timer-3526T-27-37-regular-prod.htm

$210.00 with a timer, 5 trays....what I have and I have had mine for a couple of years....works great.

-Tony

Sarah Kirkconnell
(sarbar) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Mt. Rainier
Re: Which new dehydrator? on 06/22/2009 18:07:34 MDT Print View

By all means, yes, a new one will do better :-)

A good Nesco, an Excalibur or others will work just fine. It comes down to what style you like and as well as what you are willing to spend. You can get a good Nesco for around $60-75 on Amazon that will work great.

I currently use a LeQuip dryer....

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Which new dehydrator? on 06/22/2009 18:16:29 MDT Print View

I have a six tray "GOOD4U" dehydrator.

It lacks the ability to expand, but has a thermostat and a timer, which were both high on my feature want list. It also has removable sliding trays, and the option to leave one or more out to make room for bulky items.

It measures 18" deep X 8.5" high X 13 inches wide. The trays provide 13.5X10.5 of ventilated drying space each, or 850 square inches of drying space total.

I bought mine for $130 from the waterionizers.com ebay store, with fast and free shipping.

I couldn't find many online reviews of the machine, but I have been very happy with mine.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Which new dehydrator on 06/22/2009 18:55:07 MDT Print View

I've been looking on EBay, and I'm kind of torn between the L'equip, that I could add trays to, or the 9 tray Excaliber (factory second, 10 year warranty).

Sarah Kirkconnell
(sarbar) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Mt. Rainier
Also... on 06/22/2009 20:21:23 MDT Print View

Do you have a Cabelas around? They carry a ton of dehydrators, including their branded stuff that is made by the name brands. Lots of accessories!
They carry Excalibur as well.

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Which new dehydrator? on 06/22/2009 21:01:50 MDT Print View

If I average about 75, I can be at Cabela's in Dallas in 5-6 hours. Not too hard to beat their prices online though.

Laurie Ann March
(Laurie_Ann) - F

Locale: Ontario, Canada
Nesco Dehydrator on 06/23/2009 11:29:11 MDT Print View

Joe... you don't need to spend as much as what a L'Equip or Excalibur will run. The Nesco FD 75 PR (or the Open Country version which is essentially the same model) will be half the price.

Here is my review of it...

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/reviews/display_reviews.html?forum_thread_id=5098&skip_to_post=36118#36118

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Which new dehydrator? on 06/23/2009 12:33:50 MDT Print View

Laurie, I have an open country now, just no temp control, and no timer. Dries pretty unevenly. Timer is a biggie.

Laurie Ann March
(Laurie_Ann) - F

Locale: Ontario, Canada
dehydrator on 06/23/2009 17:22:02 MDT Print View

The Open Country Model I am thinking of is identical to the FD 75 except for color... 700 watts and a temp control.

A really easy way to solve the timer issue is one of those $5 light timers... you know the kind that turn your lights on and off so people think you are home. Works brilliantly.

Brian Lewis
(brianle) - F

Locale: Pacific NW
Yup, Nesco's are fine on 06/24/2009 14:23:21 MDT Print View

As Sarah said, the Nesco model seems to work fine for me; I use it pretty infrequently once or at most twice a year and have had it maybe 4 - 5 years. I'm drying some meats now for my personal "keep it simple and easy" approach to trail dinners. I might even drop doing that after I finally try TVP and find I can live with it in lieu of meat (oddly enough I've never gotten around to giving it a try ...).

Sarah Kirkconnell
(sarbar) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Mt. Rainier
Re: Yup, Nesco's are fine on 06/24/2009 16:00:41 MDT Print View

Brian....once I tried the flavored TVP I found I liked it! The "hamburger" and "Sausage" are great - and best of all super shelf stable!

Jared Cook
(rooinater) - F

Locale: Northwet
Re: Re: Yup, Nesco's are fine on 06/24/2009 16:06:37 MDT Print View

I'm also in the market for a new one (mine is from teh '80's, no thermostat, no timer, and getting old), the one I've mainly been looking at since I can't afford the commercial cabela's dehydrator, but this one looks inviting since I dry alot.
10 trays, appears to be a side blowing dehydrator but doesn't say. only 600watts but has a thermostat adjuster. I need to take the hour drive to cabela's and take a look at it though since the description is vauge online. trays do appear to be a little narrow. Refurbished cabela's 80L commercial dryers can be had for $224.99 online...


http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/product/standard-item.jsp?id=0061371518667a&navCount=0&podId=0061371&parentId=cat570005&masterpathid=&navAction=jump&cmCat=search_redir&catalogCode=QZ&rid=&parentType=index&indexId=cat570005&hasJS=true

Edited by rooinater on 06/24/2009 16:11:59 MDT.

Sarah Kirkconnell
(sarbar) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Mt. Rainier
Re: Yup, Nesco's are fine on 06/24/2009 16:22:23 MDT Print View

Jared,

That is a nice one. I have seen it in person last year :-)

But ooh, the commercial sit on the counter dryer they sell is SOOOO nice!!

Jared Cook
(rooinater) - F

Locale: Northwet
Re: Re: Yup, Nesco's are fine on 06/24/2009 16:29:39 MDT Print View

I haven't seen the commercial dryer in person yet, but I might just keep saving and get one. $225 for a refurbished 80L and $299 for a white brand new 80L under warranty... Twice what I wanted to spend, but It's something I'd use for many, many, many years to come and it would greatly increase my drying capacity, speed and efficiency compared to my 1980 Waring dryer... The accessories are what will kill me, drying trays, fruit trays...

Sarah Kirkconnell
(sarbar) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Mt. Rainier
Re: Yup, Nesco's are fine on 06/24/2009 16:45:57 MDT Print View

That Pro Cabela one is the type a high producer really needs. If you want to do jerky, especially if you are hunting, it will do it fast and safely. I like how the dehydrator has an actual door - similar to convection ovens that sit on counters.

I'd say this: Spend $400 on the Pro one (that includes some accessories) and you will not regret it. My feelings are that if you buy a $60 Nesco you won't be as happy.

The only thing that keeps me from getting one isn't the cost (I could write if off business wise) but frankly I don't dry enough. Right now I can hide my dryer up on top of my kitchen cupboards out of the way...lol!

Jared Cook
(rooinater) - F

Locale: Northwet
Re: Re: Yup, Nesco's are fine on 06/24/2009 17:13:41 MDT Print View

capacity and multiple runs is what normally stops me from doing more dehydrating... I hate having to do 2 to 3 nights in a row of dehydrating ground meats for refilling my backpacking supply, or large cases of fruits and several runs to cook and dry pasta or other meals... I'd like to do all of one set of items in one night. I'll save, buy the small 80L commercial grade, and use parchment paper till I can start buying the dryer and fruit trays... It'll be easier to cut parchment paper for a square tray... You've twisted my arm. :P

Edited by rooinater on 06/24/2009 17:14:25 MDT.