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For those of you that have experience with the various grinders, stuffers, accessories. Can you educate a newby here thats thinking about getting into it? I've thought about just because of the clean-up skipping it totally. But if I can find a decent grinder and stuffer, I may go ahead and invest. So, What would be your #1 advice to someone starting off?
And what would you suggest for a grinder and a stuffer thats easy to use & maintain, easy to clean, and not a pain in the rear when actually using. e.g. plastic gears?

P.S. - Don't get me wrong, I don't mind cleaning. I know that has to be done. But my understanding is there are some grinders and stuffers easier to clean than others.
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I don't know if this makes a Difference now, but, I tried my first sausage attempt and it was just okay. I bought the kitchen aid attachments for my mixer and found the grinder to work pretty good (you just need to cut the meat into smaller pieces). The stuffer option is worthless in my opinion. It takes so much work to get the ground meat down the feed tube that it gets warm and ruined and meshes together too much for good sausage. Now onto my solution. I just got my new LEM 5 lb sausage stuffer. I am gonna try it in the next couple days. it looks like it couldn't be easier to clean. Just a few stainless parts and a couple plastic parts. Check it out on The kitchen aid grinder is easy to clean as well.

Hope this hepls Briggsy, as I am a complete newbie to this too!
I pretty much have Vicky B's set up. Couldn't be happier for a cheaper, easy to use set-up.
The Kitchen Aid grinder attachment is a snap to use and clean up. The LEM 5 # sausage stuffer is very easy to use and clean. I'm no where near an expert, but I've done breakfast sausage and Kielbasa with the LEM and have done bulk sausage and ground chuck withthe Kitchen Aid.

Good luck with your sausage making- nothing will ever compare to store bought after this.
Briggsy, welcome to the world of sausage making. Once you try it you will be hooked and never buy store bought stuff again. Eh, Vicki? Big Grin
The same goes for bacon.

Anyway, back on topic. I have a #12 grinder from Northern Tool. About $100. I have an 8# horizontal stuffer from Northern Tool also. It's been discontinued. I wish it was a vertical, mine takes up too much counter space to use. The 5# vertical is about $100 also.
I bought a 20# meat mixer off of eBay for $60. Before that I just used the stand mixer with a dough hook to mix 5# batches.
If I had do-overs, I would get the water powered stuffer. I think they are about $140 and have NO CRANK. I could appreciate that for snack stix.
I'm gettin' to old to do all this manual labor. Wink

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