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Christmas Bonus....gettin a new Grinder but have some questions

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by coffee_junkie, Dec 14, 2010.

  1. coffee_junkie

    coffee_junkie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Looking for some opinions please!

    I am getting a bonus for Christmas, and have been given permission at home to purchase some new "tools"

    I previously had a Cabellas pro grinder, it was a $165 grinder, but had plastic gears. I was grinding up geese and hit a steel pellet, a poof no more grinder, returned it and they replaced it with a new grinder. Next season the same exact thing happened, they will not replace it again. I guess I can't say I blame them.

    Although I absolutly hate Cabelas it seems that thier professional grade grinders are the best out there for the price. I am looking at the 3/4 HP and the 1 HP. I don't quite know how much the bonus will be but I am guessing it will be enough to buy a 1HP or a 3/4 HP and the 7 LB stuffer. I know that stuffing with a grinder can be painful, but that was with my elcheapo crap grinder, would the 1HP be better? I usually stuff 30 Lbs at a time. Would the 3/4HP and a vertical stuffer be a better purchase? The only difference is of course speed and the 1HP has a reverse. Is the reverse really that necessary? I hardly ever used reverse on my old grinder. So I guess my question is, what would you go with? Or are there other compareable options out there? Does anybody know if there are grinders in my price range that will just grind up steel pellets? (just kidding) I know I also need to invest in a metal detector if I plan on grinding geese (which I do).
  2. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member


    I would look up Northern Tools they have a grinder for about 129.00 too i think. It has been said that it has metal gears I don't know cause I haven't opened on up. I have the grinder from Gander Mtn. and it's alright and I would buy the grinder form Northern before buying the one gander. They don't even have any replacment plates for it and I can't find one to replace them with either. I have been all over the internet too. So check out  Northern Tools.
  3. smokeamotive

    smokeamotive Smoking Fanatic

    you can also check out LEM,( they also supply BPS,) and Harbor Freight. Don't know about Harbor Frieghts quality but heard of some people buying them from there.
  4. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Last year, I purchased a 3/4 hp #12 from Gander Mountain.  It was On Sale after Christmas + Addl. 20% off with W/Coupon & Free Shipping.  Got it for $229 delivered to the house.


    I added a Harbor "Freight Foot Switch" for $10


    Never needed reverse with my model, but the momentary foot switch keeps my hands free and the unit safe when the kids are around.

    Last edited: Dec 15, 2010
  5. mudduck

    mudduck Smoking Fanatic

    Last edited: Dec 15, 2010
  6. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    That northern grinder looks like a deal for $80!

    Northern is good about standing behind their products.

    I always put electronics and power tools on my Mastercard.  There's a little "Extended Warranty Clause" that doubles the manufacturer's warranty, or you can always buy an extended warranty for a few bucks from Northern Tool.

    Extended Warranty

    1 Year = $14.99

    2 Year = $34.99

    Last edited: Dec 15, 2010
  7. plj

    plj Meat Mopper

    IMO, a grinder is like a gun safe. Figure out the largest size you could possibly need, add space for a few more, then double it. And then be prepared to buy a second one at some point. :)    I'm on my third grinder - bigger each time. Manual crank, then small electric, now I have the 1 HP from cabelas.  I grind an average of about 200 lbs of venison / year - I can get a deer thru the grinder in less than 5 minutes.  Time is precious, spend it hunting, not grinding.

    Regarding stuffing, I do use my grinder to stuff. I know most of the folks here say the dedicated stuffer is much better, and I accept that as truth, but the grinder works good for me so I dont have a stuffer.  Well, ok, I do get help from my wife & boys, maybe if I had to do it alone I'd change my mind.

    So my opinion would be to put extra $ & get the bigger grinder.

    bummer on the steel pellets, not sure how I'd handle that one. But it's a good problem to have  :)    My dad used to say "shoot them in the head you moron!"  I like the idea of a metal detector, but would it find one pellet without detecting the knives in the drawer under the counter? I guess if you did it on a concrete garage floor or something...
  8. coffee_junkie

    coffee_junkie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    As long as the sales at Cabelas keeps up I might be able to swing both a 1HP grinder and the 7lb vertical stuffer. I have looked at just about every grinder out there, and the Cabelas grinder is the only one with a 5 year warranty, the rest are 2 years. I am looking at a zircon stud finder with metal detector, yes I think on the garage floor or kitchen table where no other metal could trigger it would do the trick. I also like the idea of the internal safety shutoff on the grinder, I am thinking if a pellet gets caught between the plate and the knife, the gears would be strong enough to hold until the safety shutoff activates.
  9. coffee_junkie

    coffee_junkie Master of the Pit OTBS Member


    I know there are a ton of threads out there similar to mine but not exactly. Any more opinions/thoughts?
  10. tom37

    tom37 Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I cant help here, as I know nothing about grinding. I am watching tho, to see what the general census is.
  11. BandCollector

    BandCollector Master of the Pit OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★


    I have been using a metal detector for some time now with my geese and have not had a problem.  No complaints when the geese have been presented for consumption.

    Keep the wood on the wood,  John, (BandCollector)
  12. shooterrick

    shooterrick Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I have a 1 3/4 horse grinder made in canada.  It is called a Quisen Pro I think.  Works great and not too expensive if ya watch ebay auctions carefully.  I stuffed with this work horse of a grinder and I also now have a 15lbs vertical stuffer same as Northern Tools.  I will not go back to stuffing with a grinder.  Reasons? 

    1, just easier and less work

    2, texture of not running through an auger again is great and for some sausage like Andouille requiring large pieces of meat impossible with a grinder.

    3, clean up of my grinder easier from not smearing so much fat and such inside the thing.

    4, Speed.  You can go through 30 lbs of sausage with a stuffer in no time.

    5,  I get less air with the stuffer to deal with.

    What I would recommend?  Buy a quality grinder of at least 1 horse and wait if you must for a stuffer but plan on a stuffer none the least.  Get one with metal gears like Northern tools 15lbs model and one that replacement gears are available.  I have never had to replace the metal gears bbut have heard of others that have had to replace nylon gears.  Your grinder should have replacement blades and plates available also.  Just a note about capacity of stuffers.  Remember that if the capacity of a stuffer says 10 lbs it actually only holds 9 lbs of product.  All stuffers I have seen hold one lbs less than the tank size.  This is due to the space needed to get the plunger seated and  sealed and its physical size is about 1lbs worth of meat.   The advertised capacity is the tank size only not how much it will hold in the real world. 
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2010
  13. werdwolf

    werdwolf Master of the Pit OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I moved up from a sub $100 grinder to the Cabelas 1 HP.  So much easier and faster.  it chews thru the meat, no pushing it down the throat.

    I use the grinder to stuff if I am looking towards a more emulsified (similar to hot dog) texture.  The stuffer keeps the texture better and is easier and faster to use for stuffing than the grinder.
  14. bmudd14474

    bmudd14474 Legendary Pitmaster Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I have the cabela's commercial grade one and it was well worth it. 
  15. Hi try the sausage maker, same a LEM, LEM $99, TSM #8 $119, both 575watt