I'm in the evaluation phase...with this reply post.
I had heard of this product for the last year or so, but had been using a FoodSaver.
I read all the reply posts here and shopped for one today. I found the simple starter Handi-Vac at one local Target store. Most were sold out. Wallmart in my area stopped selling them for some dumb reason.
First off, the price. There were basic units left on the shelf that have 3 qt. bags. One unit had a $3.00 instant rebate sticker on it. My total price
was $ 3.69. How could I pass that up? I bought some coppertop batteries for it.
Next stop was the supermarket where I bought a pack of chicken drumsticks and a pack of chicken thighs. Also some green onions.
While at the supermarket, I found the same unit "on sale" for $10.99.
One thing Target didn't have was extra bags. The supermarket did.
14 bags for $3.99. Not bad. I bought a pack. (I'll need to go online to order bigger bags).
I got home, carefully razored the package open and attached the reciept to it (in case I want to return it).
I looked at undoing the door to the battery compartment when my finger hit the units ON button. It started working...cheapie alkalines are included!
I semi froze the chicken as I do with FoodSaver, so the juices don't start coming out during the vacuum process. I placed 3 pieces of chicken in the qt. bag and sealed the bag and pressed the unit onto the seal circle.
Nothing happened. I then moved the swivel head of the unit around and found the sweet spot. Aha! You need to move the head of unit around untill you get some action. No wonder they put the head on a swivle.
Air got drawn out of the bag, and when the unit motor made a deeper sound, I stopped 3 seconds later. Repeated same with chicken legs.
I also Handi-Vac'ed some scallions to go in the veg compartment.
I plan to see how long they stay vacuumed. Non-blanced vegetables give off gases and are surely bound to not keep vacummed.
I've yet to try the gallon bags to freeze a roast. My current FoodSaver does it just fine. I always partially freeze roasts before FoodSaving.
Reynolds says "just bag the thawed meat, vacuum seal it and put it in the fridge. Hmmm, I may try that, but I have my doubts. Even FoodSaver says to partially freeze meats before vacume sealing.
Oh ya..lol what's it with some sites calling it "vacuum" , others "vacume."
I'll post my findings in a day or so...(actually, the chicken wasn't that frozen...I let it get really cold, but still pliable). We'll see