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bluesolaise
September 8th, 2008, 02:02 PM
Can anyone recommend a food dehydrator that isn't made by American Harvest/Nesco?

A few months back I ordered a new dehydrator base directly from AH/N because I wanted one of their old models since I have many, many stacking trays in that size.

Within 20 minutes of first using it, it stopped working. I contacted the company and asked what to do. I was instructed to send it for repair under warranty to their approved repair shop here in British Columbia. Weeks later the repair shop 'phoned to say the unit needs several parts & that they'll take between 4-6 weeks to arrive. AH/Nesco refused to simply replace the unit because I hadn't sent it for repair to their HQ. Oh, and I have to order & pay for the parts myself. At this rate it will be the end of October before the unit is repaired and returned to me (shipping $17 each way - my cost). No use to me - my garden is pumping out veggies NOW.

Needless to say, I'm not impressed with American Harvest/Nesco, so does anyone have another brand they can recommend?

(Please don't suggest a solar dehydrator - we were going to build one this year but didn't get around to it - just as well though, hardly any sun here this summer :o)

Zinniagirl
September 8th, 2008, 04:50 PM
...(Please don't suggest a solar dehydrator - we were going to build one this year but didn't get around to it - just as well though, hardly any sun here this summer :o)

Had to chuckle on that one. Dear hubby has been working on one which I am now told should be ready by the end of the week. I have been hearing this for a couple of weeks now.

Sorry I can't help with a recommendation as I have been using an old not so wonderful one I inherited from my mom.

Emerald
September 8th, 2008, 05:11 PM
I'm sorry that your having so much trouble with the American Harvester-- I bought one years ago and haven't had a bit of trouble with it, and have even bought two more at yard sales (and they looked brand new) for a $1 a piece. I kinda just wanted them for the extra trays as they are expensive to buy separately. The son-in-law has one as he likes to make jerky with it. I would look on Craiges list or freecycle or even put an add on one of those site-- some one may have one that they are not using. The only parts in the bottom are a fan, thermister (sp) and heater coil. I can't believe that they are having so much trouble finding parts and fixing it for you. Cheap goobers!

I have heard good things about Excaliber brand-- but they are very pricey and big.

052039
September 8th, 2008, 06:23 PM
My wife picked up 2 at GOODWILL 1 for us & 1 for our daughter less than $5.00 ea. & both are still going after 5 years. check it out....also BIG LOTS.

052039 - BILL :D:D:)

tashak
September 8th, 2008, 07:38 PM
I use hanging dehydrators (sometimes sold for sprouting wheat grass), formerly sold by Lehman's.
Another forum I participate on has recently been recommending (for electric dehydrators) the ones with the Cabela's brand, saying they are sturdier and less expensive than the Excalibers.
The thriftstore/garage sale/Craigslist/Freecycle suggestion can be good too.

Emerald
September 9th, 2008, 08:26 AM
I know that plenty of people got them for the y2k thingy and I'll bet if you check around someone will have one.. And for when you get your solar dehydrator going- I planned on making one this summer but it got sidetracked by daughter having my grandbaby and the shower breaking (it is day11-no shower:() But my plans are to make a solar collector like the one you put on the side of your house and make a box to hold my American harvester trays--and just hook the solar collector to it-- then in threat of rain or cloudy weather I can just pop the whole set of trays back on the little base-- and at least cut some of my electric costs.

allenwrench
September 9th, 2008, 12:14 PM
I got AH/N...so far so good. Wish someone would make a solar dryer. Am going to test out a Cabbalas.

FritzDaKat
September 9th, 2008, 12:28 PM
Hmmmm, get a stack of old recycled storm door screens and build a frame for them to sit above a recycled Blower motor from a Central Air furnace with a space heater blowing into the squirrel cage intake. Make sure to use some spacers between the screens to allow for better air circulation. ;).

Hey, I bet this would work for my toilet paper making as well. :D

countrygma
September 9th, 2008, 05:34 PM
Hey, I bet this would work for my toilet paper making as well. :D

OH my...this sounds bad.. I am glad you didn't say re-cyling though. :eek:

Country Tattler
September 9th, 2008, 08:34 PM
One of the advantages of the 70s vintage trailer that we're living in while rennovating the "real" house is that the propane oven still has a pilot light. I use it for dehydrating and it works great. I use plastic needlepoint canvas (it's washable) to put the food on and whatever cooling racks are handy under the plastic canvas to make "underneath" air space. Oh, I forgot to say that the mesh and all goes on a cookie sheet. So much for my "technical writer" skills, but you get the picture. It beats all heck out of listening to an electric dehydrator eat up the pocketbook and makes me feel a little better about that little pilot light burning for naught.

FritzDaKat
September 9th, 2008, 11:59 PM
Well I was thinking of using Hydrogen peroxide as a means to "fluff" a bunch of Flax pulp as it drys, like making paper, only two-ply, mabey a lil' aloe. :D

Imp
September 10th, 2008, 05:08 AM
I'm scared now....LOL.

FritzDaKat
September 10th, 2008, 08:14 AM
Relax Imp, just a lil' experiment I want to run in the event I find myself in a "SHTF" scenario. ;)

FiberFlinger
September 10th, 2008, 12:23 PM
(Please don't suggest a solar dehydrator - we were going to build one this year but didn't get around to it - just as well though, hardly any sun here this summer :o)

I won't suggest that at all, I would suggest that you contact BC's public defender and report this to them. Here in the states we go to our Attorney General to file complaints of this nature. What ever your equivalant is, is where you should go. I would first inform the offending company you are going to do so if they don't do things right.

I saw one of those round ones at the local Humane Society's thrift shops for $3, I should have picked up. You might find a steal on ebay but don't hold your breath. but maybe.

Well I was thinking of using Hydrogen peroxide as a means to "fluff" a bunch of Flax pulp as it drys, like making paper, only two-ply, mabey a lil' aloe. :D

OK, now wait a minute, what do you mean? Please explain your Flax operation, maybe in another thread, which would be appropriate. I'm interested in just what you are doing, why and what the outcome would be fore. Since I do spin it might come in handy if it worked. Maybe on something like yucca and / or milkweed.. Of course I would first use lye on those then continue on with further.

Imp
September 10th, 2008, 02:32 PM
I was joking, Fritz.

ScarlettO'Herring
September 10th, 2008, 02:38 PM
I'd second e-Bay or second hand stores. I have a (very) old The Big 1 Harvest Savor continuous process dehydrator from Vita Mix, and I would highly recommend it if you can find one. It has 20 trays, and works like a dream. They don't make them anymore though :(

As for the solar dehydrator, we tried that and we're a bit further south than you. It was our experience that it just isn't hot and dry enough here for solar to be practical, we had stuff rot.

ScarlettO