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#29899 - 08/04/04 06:15 PM Vacuum packing survival materials
Anonymous
Unregistered


I have noticed several references on the "Equipped" site to vacuum packing items for a personal survival kit. Does anyone have any recommendations as to what type/brand vacuum sealer is most suitable for this purpose?

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#29900 - 08/04/04 08:10 PM Re: Vacuum packing survival materials
NAro Offline
Addict

Registered: 03/15/01
Posts: 487
I've been very pleased with my Food Saver brand.
HINT: When I packed my PSK, I used a significantly larger bag than required for the small kit. When opened, the bag became a water carrier.

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#29901 - 08/05/04 04:42 AM Re: Vacuum packing survival materials
NY RAT Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 09/19/03
Posts: 256
Loc: brooklyn, ny
i just recieved a black & decker food sealer for my birthday its not bad but after sealing a few test bags i noticed they lost some of the brick like feel of them.

i couldnt move things around alot but that tight hard feel wasnt as tight anymore, so im not sure if i didnt seal properly or what.

if this happened to anyone else id appreciate some advice there.


besides that ive heard rival was a good brand.
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#29902 - 08/05/04 12:38 PM Re: Vacuum packing survival materials
NAro Offline
Addict

Registered: 03/15/01
Posts: 487
NY Rat:
In my experience, too, the bags sometimes develop slow leaks over time. For me this is not a problem. If it is annoying, I just replace and repack.
I don't use these bags for survival food storage,... just to pack my small kit. In fact, sometimes I don't even pull a vacuum on the bag: I just squeeze out excess air by hand and heat-seal it.
IMHO the advantages are that the "container" can be as large or as small as you need it. I even have bags-within-bags: a mylar emergency "blanket", wire, and duct tape shrunk down suprizingly small in one bag (shelter); a few bandaids and some newskin packets in another; and everything else in the PSK distributed throughout the larger bag with the two smaller ones within. But my point is, with this packing approach you can cut/shape/arrange/pack anyway you wish.
A disadvantage it that, once opened, you need the machine to re-seal. Or, in the field, a bit of duct tape.
NOTE: where this vacuum packer REALLY is neat is for emergency clothing. A set of spare socks, polypro long underwear, even a waterproof shell, etc. etc. can be squeezed down amazingly thin and tight (and in a waterproof bag, of course). For gear that I don't get into except at a time of urgent need, I keep the stuff packed in the large (12"x ??") bags and stowed in my duffle bag or vehicle. TRY IT: you can compress a warm, dry, change of clothing into a package no thicker than a Brooklyn telephone directory.

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#29903 - 08/05/04 12:47 PM Re: Vacuum packing survival materials
williamlatham Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 238
Loc: Stafford, VA, USA
I use the food saver brand alot to freeze bulk food. It works well, but you need to check the seal to make sure it is complete. I do wish the heating element was closer to the vacuum chamber to avoid the wasted bag edges.

I did vacuum pack a roll of gauze for my med kit to reduce bulk. It took a couple of cycles to vacuum, seal, trim to reduce the packaging to a managable size (~2x2 in), but it worked. That particular item has not lost vacuum yet, but I have had others do so. Part is the quality of the bags. I like the food saver ones, not so much the black and decker bags.

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#29904 - 08/05/04 06:10 PM Re: Vacuum packing survival materials
OldBaldGuy Offline
Geezer

Registered: 09/30/01
Posts: 5695
Loc: Former AFB in CA, recouping fr...
We have the Tilia from Costco, and love it. After a while the little rubber seal poops out, theywill send you a new one for free whenever you ask. One trick we have learned, for some things (trailmix for one) we put the item in a ziploc freezer bag, but DO NOT zip it shut, then put that bag in the sealer bag and vacuum seal it. That way, when you open it later you have a sealable container to keep the item in...
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#29905 - 08/05/04 09:05 PM Re: Vacuum packing survival materials
brian Offline
Veteran

Registered: 07/28/04
Posts: 1468
Loc: Texas
Great Idea with the Ziplocks!!! I think I may start doing this when I'm backpacking. I always need to pack things as small and light as possible and hate having to sacrifice resealability (I think I made up a new word) in order to do so.
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#29906 - 08/05/04 09:33 PM Re: Vacuum packing survival materials
bountyhunter Offline


Registered: 11/14/03
Posts: 1224
Loc: Milwaukee, WI USA
NYRat:

The more air something has in it, the longer you have to use the vacumn pump to evacuate the air.

A brick of cheese that is vacumn packed may have maintained surface texture long enough to retain air inside its structure and then later the air may have broken out of the brick into the bag and given it that squishy feel. Also, anything you vacumn pack that has water in it may feel solid unless that water would somehow break down into its component parts of hydrogen and oxygen which would again cause the bag to start feeling squishy.

Having been in the HVAC trade (I'm still qualified, mentally and legally, but shut out of the trade because of my knees.), I have the mother of vacumn devices at my disposal. I have a dual chamber vacumn pump capable of almost absolute vacumn that can pump down at 3.5 cubic feet per minute. That crushed can demonstration they give for food vacumn pumps would probably happen so fast with this machine that if you blinked, you might miss it. The problem is getting a plastic sealer that is not expensive but still consistent so that I seal without burning through.

If your pump on your food sealer ever breaks down, you could salvage an old refrigerator compressor, some tubing on the suction side attached to a football inflator needle to do the vacumn process and still use the sealer to make the bags.

Bountyhunter

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#29907 - 08/06/04 04:56 AM Re: Vacuum packing survival materials
NY RAT Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 09/19/03
Posts: 256
Loc: brooklyn, ny
that is a great idea bountyhunter.

and to williams post, i only have black & decker bags right now since it was a bday gift last month.

im worried about leakage because i want to stock up on some bulk foods and not worry about spoilage hopefully.

btw what about those mylar bags that are often used with sealed buckets and such?
can they be used in a food sealer effectivly or is there any reason not to use them?
_________________________
been gone so long im glad to be back

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#29908 - 08/06/04 11:46 AM Re: Vacuum packing survival materials
williamlatham Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 01/12/04
Posts: 238
Loc: Stafford, VA, USA
The only things I have tried are the food saver and B&D bags. They do make those el cheapo resealers for chip bags (mylar), but I have never tried one, but the theory holds. The only problem I see is potential burn through. Only one way to find out.

Bill

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