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Hassouni

Commercial grade manual citrus presses

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It seems my pop-up bar is kicking into life again, and I dislike juicing dozens of lemons and limes in a hand press. It seems the two best rated commercial-style presses (on Amazon, at least) are the OrangeX Olympus and similar, and the Hamilton Beach 932 - the latter stands out as it appears to be the highly-rated only rack-and-pinion system. I just got back from Turkey, where on very street corner, someone is squeezing oranges, and they all have rack-and-pinion presses. 

 

Is that setup really better than the OrangeX lever type? Is there a decent one for less than the very high cost of the Hamilton Beach?

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Can't vouch for them, but my go-to for stuff like this is Webstaurant, which lists four manual juicers, including the HB 932 (their "secret" price for which is $164).  The funnel-type juicer, for $60, looks like it might suit your needs.

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Had a Hamilton Beach manual one, used it commercially for about 4 years.

 

Rack and pinion work well, but they are moving parts and will wear eventually.  Biggest damage I did to the juicer was to knock it off a shelf, it pushed the rack and pinion a bit out of alignment and it wore the rack prematurely.  Thing about Hamilton Beach is that you can rebuild the juicer, all parts are readily available.

 

If I have to buy another juicer, it will be a lever type.

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To clarify, when I said can't vouch for "them" I meant the juicers.  I've had plenty of good experiences with Webstaurant.

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Had a Hamilton Beach manual one, used it commercially for about 4 years.

 

Rack and pinion work well, but they are moving parts and will wear eventually.  Biggest damage I did to the juicer was to knock it off a shelf, it pushed the rack and pinion a bit out of alignment and it wore the rack prematurely.  Thing about Hamilton Beach is that you can rebuild the juicer, all parts are readily available.

 

If I have to buy another juicer, it will be a lever type.

 

Why lever, out of curiosity? Commercial use for 4 years is a pretty good lifespan

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Can't vouch for them, but my go-to for stuff like this is Webstaurant, which lists four manual juicers, including the HB 932 (their "secret" price for which is $164).  The funnel-type juicer, for $60, looks like it might suit your needs.

 

The video for that $60 one makes it look very unstable. 

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That's probably why HB can get away with selling one that cost three times as much.  :smile:

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For a manual citrus juicer made of robust materials and costing in the neighborhood of $250.00 It should last at least 10 years.  I gotta admit, they look classy sitting on a back bar.

 

The lever operated one has no moving parts.  True, the levers rotate on pins, but there's no rack and pinion to wear out.  The Orange X is also made of enameled cast iron, I think, and is a bit heavier and more robust than the  H.B.

 

If you want to "kick some tires" so to speak, go to any restaurant supply store and I can almost guarantee you they will have the H.B. model on display with all the bar stuff.

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I've used both the lever type like the OrangeX and the rack and pinion type like the HB. I definitely prefer the lever type over the rack and pinion. It seems much smoother and faster to operate and as stated by a previous poster there is less to wear out and have problems with.

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Hm, I'm just a bit concerned about the possibility of the lever units tipping when pressed down.

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Hm, I'm just a bit concerned about the possibility of the lever units tipping when pressed down.

Actually, with both the lever type and the pinion type you are exerting a force that will cause the device to tip if you are careful. I've found that neither one of them is really susceptible to tipping as long as you think about what you are doing when using it. As I said the lever type just seems simpler to use and smoother in actual use.

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Perhaps someone could offer a suggestion?

 

I have been having considerable wrist pain for a while, and tonight I realized the probable cause was rolling limes on the counter prior to juicing.  If I don't roll the limes, I don't get much juice from my hand juicer.  Even though I do roll the limes it has been taking me two or three limes per drink these days.

 

Do commercial presses require rolling the limes?  Is there any machine that performs the effect of rolling?

 

I have a lime juicing attachment for my Cuisinart but it does not thrill me.  Though I might use it if I had twenty limes.

 

Another constraint is that I don't really have counter space for one of the commercial presses -- but priorities are priorities.

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Perhaps someone could offer a suggestion?

 

I have been having considerable wrist pain for a while, and tonight I realized the probable cause was rolling limes on the counter prior to juicing.  If I don't roll the limes, I don't get much juice from my hand juicer.  Even though I do roll the limes it has been taking me two or three limes per drink these days.

 

Do commercial presses require rolling the limes?  Is there any machine that performs the effect of rolling?

 

I have a lime juicing attachment for my Cuisinart but it does not thrill me.  Though I might use it if I had twenty limes.

 

Another constraint is that I don't really have counter space for one of the commercial presses -- but priorities are priorities.

 

I eventually got the Hamilton Beach. It's nothing short of spectacular - I can juice dozens of fruits in figuratively no time, and I don't need to roll the limes or lemons, and it doesn't require much effort to exert the pressure. I do about a pint at a time, cleaning out the press in between pints. If all your fruit is cut in half, it can do a pint in a matter of minutes.

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I had two OrangeX juicers of the type you described, used them each for about six years, and was VERY happy with them.  They were strong, easy to clean, stable, pressed citrus better than anything else I tried at the time, and I received good service from the manufacturer.  I'm quite fussy, and these juicers passed my tests quite satisfactorily.

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JoNorvelle Walker - not "commercial grade", but it is manual......a fork! A Vietnamese friend showed me this and it works well for me. Cut lime in half along equator, insert fork into center, holding fork steady with one hand, twist lime half with the other. Like a reamer. 

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I've bought various incarnations of OrangeX juicers for myself and others. My largest classic OrangeX is going on twenty years home use, and nothing else comes close. A smaller, more recent model in my other home is still my best option there, but disappointing by comparison.

 

The signature idea is that the OrangeX doesn't squeeze all the juice, and avoids most of the more bitter rind flavors. I like a fuller flavor, and more juice, so depending on the fruit I insert red French jar gaskets to prop up the juice basket a bit, making for a more complete squeeze.

 

The cast iron is often out of true, to the point where an OrangeX won't stand flat on a countertop. I'd typically examine three to buy one, in person at Zabars in NYC. Buying online, be prepared to make returns. A related issue is how securely the lever stays in the up position. If it's always on the brink of falling on its own, in the worst case an OrangeX could sever a finger. No one with mandoline experience will be impressed with this risk, but it is there. Avoid units that are particularly unstable (hard to recognize until one has seen a good unit), and develop a protocol that doesn't put hands at risk.

 

My most recent, shoddier OrangeX (smaller, cheaper) has rubber feet that mark my counter. Lame. In my hall of shame next to chest freezers whose top surfaces can't support any weight without permanently crinkling. What planet do these engineers inhabit? Not the real world. It is naive to equate "Commercial" with higher quality than for home use. "Commercial" often means that management doesn't give a rat's hoot what the immigrants on the front lines have to put up with. It's not simply a term implying suitability for harder use.

 

I'd pay twice what this market asks for the best example of an OrangeX-style juicer, executed flawlessly. Given how people react to current prices, I doubt I'll ever get this chance. A massive, lever-style juicer is an amazing thing when it works, no compromise comes remotely close.


Edited by Syzygies (log)

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My Hamilton Beach arrived tonight.  I am enjoying a mai tai from it!  First impressions:  the press seems reasonably well made and assembled.  But why, why torx screws?

 

Clean up is not bad.  (Except for the washer...and if you have a Hamilton Beach you will know what I mean.)

 

I don't see the rational for the spring loaded drip cup.  If I keep the Hamilton Beach I will probably remove the cup and its spring loaded arm.

 

The pressed lime juice is almost free of pulp.  Not quite as free of pulp as I would like, so I still strain it.

 

Using my hand reamer on the smushed lime halves I can still extract significant juice.  I am slightly disappointed the Hamilton Beach cannot express this on its own.

 

The juice tastes fine.

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I use mine almost exclusively for lemons, as I don't use limes at the bar (no limes in the Middle East, sigh). I like the spring loaded cup - if you're doing a large, pint-or-larger sized batch, having the cup there is fantastic, because the strainer WILL drip at least an ounce of juice into the cup after a few moments, which otherwise would land on the counter.

 

As for the washer, just unscrew the top slowly, and the washer won't go anywhere unless you want it to.

 

I strain my juice for the bar, but not for home - I don't care nearly as much when it's just me, but yes, the HB juice is still quite pulpy for me as well. Where the HB shines is speed for large batches. As I said, I can do several liters in maybe 15-20 minutes, and that includes straining. 

 

As for limes, Liquid Intelligence extols the virtues of CK's hand press for ultimate fruit-ninja skills. I admit I got one at their HQ last week, but have yet to put it to the test. Additionally, I have a ubiquitous green press (meh), and the stainless steel Norpro one that Morgenthaler recommends, but it's too deep for the limes or lemons to pop right out, and therefore is no bueno for very fast juicing. It can take large citrus though, up to small juicing oranges, so that's nice.

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After more than a month of daily use my Hamilton Beach is starting to loosen up.  Time, I guess to break down and buy a torx.

 

But I am not complaining.  I don't know how I ever got along without the Hamilton Beach.  My wrist pain is gone, and I'm sitting here midafternoon on a hot summer day with a tumbler* of juice from fresh pressed Mexican organic oranges (plus a half lime thrown in for good measure).

 

 

*Baccarat, rotuts, if you're reading.

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Today I called Hamilton Beach commercial support.  I asked what tools I should use to tighten the column up, and how to non destructively remove the drip bowl arm.  The proper tool is a 1/8 inch allen wrench.  And the arm is easy to remove.  Indeed the arm has to be removed in order to tighten the column.

 

Excellent support from Hamilton Beach!  My press is all aligned and tight again, plus I don't have to worry about Baccarat getting whacked by a spring loaded piece of steel.

 

I only wish I'd called Hamilton Beach before buying a set of torx.  Don't believe everything you read on an amazon review.

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I bought a Frieling press from BBB (yay 20% off) but I was a little disappointed with the results.  Compared to a cone juicer, it left a lot of unpressed flesh in the rind.  Plus it the juice was bitter compared to the cone.  I want a juicer for both fresh OJ as well as pomegranates in the fall.

 

Has anyone used the Hamilton Beach 932 for pomegranates?  Does anyone know of a place with lifetime guarantees that sells the HB 932?  When I plunk down $200 on a piece of equipment I try to buy from BBB or Costco, like I did for my KitchenAid mixer.  I read a lot of reviews about the KitchenAid having plastic gears that break down after a while, so buying from a store with lifetime returns adds a level of comfort.

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