Author Topic: Cooking: Anyone found a can opener built to last with ballbearing's and o-rings.  (Read 2325 times)

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Offline Psi

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Has anyone come across a quality can opener built to last with ball bearings and o-rings?

I'm sick of all the can openers available wearing out after a year because they are junk.
The cheap ones and the expensive ones all seem to use the same cheap and dirty approach and only vary in terms of handle and styling.
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Online IanB

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This one has worked well for me, very solid and reliable, have had it for years. Unfortunately, the writing has worn off so I can't tell the brand.

Also, I've just noticed some rust appearing due to neglect, so I think I need to clean it up a a bit  :(

"Listen to your favorite playlists and podcasts on your thermostat" -- ecobee

I'm a chemical engineer -- I know all about the flow of fluids.
 

Online beanflying

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Head to your nearest commercial kitchen supplier. https://www.chefshat.com.au/search/results/617369a5d0f79/filter/617369c36c873

Depending on your kitchen layout the big boy Bonzer sitting in a drawer with the mount attached to a bench eats cans in a commercial setting, Mine was in my Cafe Kitchen the mount now sits under one of my mobile stainless benches.
Coffee, Food, R/C and electronics nerd in no particular order. Also CNC wannabe, 3D printer and Laser Cutter Junkie and just don't mention my TEA addiction....
 
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Offline forrestc

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This one has worked well for me, very solid and reliable, have had it for years. Unfortunately, the writing has worn off so I can't tell the brand.

Looks like a swing-a-way brand, which is pretty much the original 'built like a tank' brand in the USA...

https://www.amazon.com.au/Swing-Way-407BK-Portable-Opener/dp/B0000505IZ/ref=sr_1_21?crid=367QW1B2N1LJD&dchild=1&keywords=can%2Bopener&qid=1634955572&sprefix=can%2Bopener%2Caps%2C128&sr=8-21&th=1
 

Online IanB

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I think it's a classic case of "they don't make that exact model any more" -- so when you find something good, buy two of them...

...because you won't be able to replace it when you need to.
"Listen to your favorite playlists and podcasts on your thermostat" -- ecobee

I'm a chemical engineer -- I know all about the flow of fluids.
 

Offline HwAoRrDk

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Hmm, this made me realise I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I've used a can opener this year. Nearly everything canned I buy these days comes in cans with ring pulls.

Have the colonies not yet caught up with this modern technology? :P ;D
 

Online beanflying

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Hmm, this made me realise I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I've used a can opener this year. Nearly everything canned I buy these days comes in cans with ring pulls.

Have the colonies not yet caught up with this modern technology? :P ;D

Big Cans for commercial use in my case but most of ours have gone Clear Plastic for Fruit and some other things or ring pull for 500g and below.
Coffee, Food, R/C and electronics nerd in no particular order. Also CNC wannabe, 3D printer and Laser Cutter Junkie and just don't mention my TEA addiction....
 

Offline Psi

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Hmm, this made me realise I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I've used a can opener this year. Nearly everything canned I buy these days comes in cans with ring pulls.

Have the colonies not yet caught up with this modern technology? :P ;D

Ironically the can I open most often has a ring pull, but that is a terrible way to get the product out. (it's semi-solid).  Instead, you open both sides with a can opener and push the metal at one end in so you can cut a slice off at the other end.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2021, 05:44:16 am by Psi »
Greek letter 'Psi' (not Pounds per Square Inch)
 

Online IanB

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Hmm, this made me realise I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I've used a can opener this year. Nearly everything canned I buy these days comes in cans with ring pulls.

Have the colonies not yet caught up with this modern technology? :P ;D

Yeah, but I often turn the can upside down and open it with a can opener anyway. Can openers tend to leave a wider opening which is more convenient to get the product out.
"Listen to your favorite playlists and podcasts on your thermostat" -- ecobee

I'm a chemical engineer -- I know all about the flow of fluids.
 

Offline Psi

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Can openers tend to leave a wider opening which is more convenient to get the product out.

Not quite sure how you mean, unless you're talking about using the can opener on its side and cutting the entire top lip of the tin off.  I don't do that because I dislike the jagged sharp edge it leaves. So I use the can opener vertically to cut the inner edge which is pretty much the same end result as pulling the ring tab except that you can fold the lid back down again for storage in the fridge. (If you pull the ring tab you end up with a curved lid)
« Last Edit: October 23, 2021, 05:50:10 am by Psi »
Greek letter 'Psi' (not Pounds per Square Inch)
 

Online IanB

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Not quite sure how you mean, unless you're talking about using the can opener on its side and cutting the entire top lip of the tin off.  I don't do that because I dislike the jagged sharp edge it leaves. So I use the can opener vertically to cut the inner edge which is pretty much the same end result as pulling the ring tab except that you can fold the lid back down again for storage in the fridge. (If you pull the ring tab you end up with a curved lid)

To be sure, there's not much in it. But ring pulls do tend to leave a small lip around the top, whereas can openers cut closer to the rim. With cans that contain solid, rather than liquid, contents, this can make a difference. But on the whole, no big deal.
"Listen to your favorite playlists and podcasts on your thermostat" -- ecobee

I'm a chemical engineer -- I know all about the flow of fluids.
 

Offline Ian.M

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This style of can opener:

https://www.amazon.com/Chef-Craft-20642-Opener-Plated/dp/B000H7MLD0/
will last you a lifetime if its made from an adequate thickness of real steel (i.e. not paper-thin Chinese mystery metal) and you wipe/rinse it off and hang it up after use rather than letting it rust to death in the uncharted swamps of your neglected sink!  I've got one that's over 50 years old.  It does like the very occasional drop of food-safe mineral oil on its pivot points and after 30 years or so, its cutting performance will be enhanced by resharpening the tip of blade on a fine India stone.
 

Offline HwAoRrDk

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This style of can opener:

Yeah, that's the kind of opener I have too; got it second-hand, it's almost as old as I am. My mother had another one of that type herself that she inherited from her mother, but it eventually gave out when the splines on the 'gripper' wheel wore down and no longer had much traction on the can, no matter how hard you squeezed the handles. She bought a new one exactly like pictured (with black metal piece), but it was terrible - metal too flimsy, plastic bushing, wheel not drilled on-centre so it acted as a cam and as you turned it the handles wanted to rhythmically push apart and back.
 

Offline Psi

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This style of can opener:

yeah ,those do tend to last a long time.
But they are pretty slow compared to a modern one.
Greek letter 'Psi' (not Pounds per Square Inch)
 

Offline Ian.M

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I note the amazon link one has the dreaded plastic bushing you mentioned.  IMHO, unless you have a nicely streamlined Amazon returns process for 'goods not of merchantable quality', its best bought hands-on from a specialist kitchen shop or maybe keep an eye out at yard sales etc. for the real deal.

Also the thin handles, high grip force required and small key to turn it make this style of can opener deeply unfriendly to anyone with arthritis in their hands.
 

Offline Ian.M

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This style of can opener:

yeah ,those do tend to last a long time.
But they are pretty slow compared to a modern one.
You think that's slow?
Try:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P-38_can_opener

They are also pretty durable except in the hands of a much dumber than average grunt.
 

Offline Psi

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I've been wondering about this one from victorinox,
But I couldn't find any info if it's got ball bearing or not.

https://www.chefshop.co.nz/product/victorinox-universal-can-opener-2-colours/
« Last Edit: October 23, 2021, 07:26:51 am by Psi »
Greek letter 'Psi' (not Pounds per Square Inch)
 

Offline Halcyon

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Head to your nearest commercial kitchen supplier. https://www.chefshat.com.au/search/results/617369a5d0f79/filter/617369c36c873

Thank you so much for this link! On an unrelated topic, I've actually been looking for a source for some decent bakeware and individual pie tins. I found one commercial bakery store but they were way too expensive.
 

Online beanflying

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Head to your nearest commercial kitchen supplier. https://www.chefshat.com.au/search/results/617369a5d0f79/filter/617369c36c873

Thank you so much for this link! On an unrelated topic, I've actually been looking for a source for some decent bakeware and individual pie tins. I found one commercial bakery store but they were way too expensive.

From memory I brought the few dozen I have from Nisbets https://www.nisbets.com.au/ between them and Chefs Hat they have sorted most of my needs over the years.
Coffee, Food, R/C and electronics nerd in no particular order. Also CNC wannabe, 3D printer and Laser Cutter Junkie and just don't mention my TEA addiction....
 
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Offline jfiresto

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This one has worked well for me, very solid and reliable, have had it for years. Unfortunately, the writing has worn off so I can't tell the brand.

Also, I've just noticed some rust appearing due to neglect....

That looks like a pretty old, American made, stainless steel, Swing-A-Way can opener. I have a later, cost optimized model that I bought when I moved to Seattle to start graduate school in 1985.

I thought I spotted a little superficial rust under the long fold you show, but it is appears to just be food residue that scraps off with a toothpick. I will clean it off rather than risk the stainless steel becoming stains-less steel, although the staining may take a few more decades. For a while, the model made in China used chrome plated steel that wears through and rusts after a little use, but Amazon list their currents one as being stainless steel.

EDIT: The openers are again stainless steel. I also found some rust well inside the flat, u-channel that the edge of the other half slides into and rubs against. I expect the cutting mechanism will wear out before the rust becomes significant.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2021, 10:29:33 am by jfiresto »
-John
 

Offline emece67

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Quote from: Ian.M on Yesterday at 07:23:23 am>Quote from: Psi on Yesterday at 07:02:47 am>Quote from: Ian.M on Yesterday at 06:34:06 am
This style of can opener:

yeah ,those do tend to last a long time.
But they are pretty slow compared to a modern one.
You think that's slow?
Try:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P-38_can_opener

They are also pretty durable except in the hands of a much dumber than average grunt.


Tried many, many can openers, both manual and motorized, and always return to such basic and time-proven design. In my case on its local incarnation, named here «the spanish explorer». You will not need any other and will last various lifetimes.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2021, 12:23:42 pm by emece67 »
Information must flow.
 

Online SilverSolder

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I like the "smooth edge" can openers, that kind of decapitate the cans and leaves them less dangerous for animals in land fills etc.

The one I have here is an Oxo brand, but it doesn't seem to be a current model...  very compact, and bullet proof
 

Offline DrG

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I don't know about O-rings and ball bearings, but this one (top) has served me well for years - an OXO good grip and there are different varieties. I also keep the one on the bottom because I like to instigate trouble....when some people ask me for a can opener (usually a 'youngin') I hand it to them and chuckle when they have no freaking idea how to use it :)

« Last Edit: October 24, 2021, 04:39:28 pm by DrG »
- Invest in science - it pays big dividends. -
 

Offline dunkemhigh

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Been through a lot of can openers and now there is only one sort of can opener I would use (no loner available on this link, but should be easy enough to find):

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B077SX56RF
[attach=1]
[attach=2]

Got that after my GoodGrips opener got donated to my not-quite-MiL since her hands were getting a bit, er, old:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B012YHV6MC
[attach=3]

They look useless but they are very good indeed for two reasons:

1. There is no scissor-type action, so no strong grip required.

2. They cut under the rim so you get a proper-fitting lid with no sharp edges.

3. The act of turning the handle pulls the blade towards the can, making the grip tighter and ensuring that any wear is taken up, so they never wear out.


 

Offline TimNJ

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I'd probably buy an old Swing-A-Way (Maybe one from the 1960's - 1990's) on eBay, if looks in good enough condition. You can throw it in some Evap-o-Rust (or similar) if it's a little rusty, clean it up with some brass/bronze wire brush.

The new Swing-A-Way brand is pretty much junk. The design is roughly the same, the Swing-A-Way name is stamped on it, but the materials and durability are inferior. (Par for the course, these days.)  I did some quick research and apparently the Swing-A-Away brand dissolved in 2009, name sold to AMCO (not sure who they are), and now is manufactured overseas. Frankly, I don't care where anything is made...but this is the typical case of *buy rights to trusted old name, sell cheap shitty product until people catch on, rinse and repeat*.
 


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