Author Topic: Side By Side Press Comparison  (Read 1519 times)

Offline Al Lewis

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Side By Side Press Comparison
« on: January 30, 2013, 07:04:42 PM »
Okay, for those of you looking at cheese presses here are two very nice ones.  The one on the right is the Dutch Press sold by Cabarrus Farms ($155.00 + shipping USD) and can be seen/ordered here.  The one on the left is the Sturdy Press ($99.00 + free shipping USD) and can be seen/ordered here.  I like them both and bought them both.  The one on the right comes with a draining board, a open ended 6" mold, and a follower.  The one on the left does not.  The one on the left, however, will accept a 12" diameter mold (and pot of warm whey to press in perhaps).  The one on the right will not, except perhaps a small pot.  Finally, the one on the right will press at 200 pounds, although it creaks a bit, whereas the one on the left will press to 300 pounds.  As you can clearly see the Sturdy Press has heavier components.  Both are very well made and display the efforts of very skilled craftsmen, despite power tools, and very thoughtful designs.  So why buy them both?  Well I can now use the follower from the one on the right with the one on the left if I like.  I may also be able to press cured meats on the one on the left.  We'll see. ::)  At any rate pick your own.  I'm not going to promote either because, as I said in the beginning, I like them both, for different reasons, and bought them both. ^-^  You are free to do the same.  Hope this helps.
« Last Edit: January 30, 2013, 10:47:20 PM by Al Lewis »


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Offline ljtsquare

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Re: Side By Side Press Comparison
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2013, 06:52:28 PM »
Hi Al,

I am new at making cheese and I was actually looking at both of the presses you shared. I almost purchased the one on the left, but I hesitated. I purchased the Artisan Cheese Making At Home book specifically for recipes. Instead, I found that the author recommends a crank press instead of a dutch, http://schmidling.com/press.htm. I can clearly see that the advantage to a dutch style press allows you to make large cheese forms while the crank press is more limiting. Is that it? Everything I've read says to stay away from the crank press, then I read this book which seems to be well received.... am I missing something?

Thanks for your advice in advance!

-Luke

Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Side By Side Press Comparison
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2013, 07:19:22 PM »
I could sit and design presses for you all day, I design machines for a living for the DOD, but at the end of the day it boils down to being able to place a specified amount of weight onto a form and measure it accurately.  Screw presses with scales will give you a very good reading, when you set them. Ten minutes later, when the curd is pressed down, guess what?  You now have less pressure on your curd and you have to re-set it.  The advantage of a lever style press is that the amount of weight being placed on the form never varies.  You set it and forget it.  Unless you want to get up in the wee hours of the night and re-set your press I'd go for a Dutch Style press.  Call me crazy but I like to sleep at night. ;D

Offline ljtsquare

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Re: Side By Side Press Comparison
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2013, 07:38:48 PM »
Thanks Al,

I am an architect, so I understand what you are saying. I was just surprised that the author was pretty specific about presses and what to buy.

I really appreciate you getting back to me. I will be purchasing the Sturdy Press as that was my first choice!

Again, thank you very much for your opinion.

Luke

Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Side By Side Press Comparison
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2013, 07:49:54 PM »
You are very welcome.


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Offline JimSteel

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Re: Side By Side Press Comparison
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2013, 05:30:39 PM »
Not quite at the buying a press stage, but I have this vision of the next few months, and I see a press in it.  For these presses, how much weight on the lever would you need to reach the maximums, 200/300lbs.  For a 6 inch round, would 200lbs of pressure be enough for swiss style cheeses. 

Everything I've made so far has been pressed with free weights, never more than 20lbs, but they are all semi-firm cheeses.  200/300 pounds seems insanely high, but I'm just a rookie.  I know grating cheeses can get fairly high up, but my recipe book just says "firm pressure."  (yes, it's 200 easy cheeses, and Ive read all the threads on psi vs. direct weight and the author's possible error)

So, any clarification would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Side By Side Press Comparison
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2013, 06:47:21 PM »
Swiss cheese should be pressed at 8 pounds per pound of cheese so you won't need anything near those weights unless you are going to make a huge wheel.  Both of these presses hold a 50 pound weight at the end of their lever.  The Sturdy Press  converts that weight to 450 pounds on the "B" pin.  The Dutch Press converts it top 200 pounds which is its maximum weight.  I sold my Dutch Press last week to a friend that wants to make goat cheese.  Don't worry, they got a huge discount, and I kept my Sturdy Press.  I understand that the Sturdy Press no longer has free shipping and the price has gone up slightly but I can assure you it is well worth a long look.  It presses much higher weights and can be used, due to that fact, for other things.  For what it's worth, I would definitely recommend it.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2013, 10:45:18 PM by Al Lewis »