The AA 921 will last decades, probably closer to a century. It's made of very thick cast aluminum. I herd claims that the lid was difficult to remove after use. I found this to be somewhat true. However, I just used the handle end of a butter knife to gently nudge the lid upward. The cooker has no rubber seal, so the tight metal to metal seal is of the utmost importance. I had no problems with this cooker whatsoever. It worked perfectly. I would definately recomend this product to anyone considering the purchase of a quality pressure canner.
This thing is built extremely well. I have no doubt that it will last me many years. I've already used it to pressure can many things since fall such as carrots, elk meat, broth, etc. Worked perfectly in every situation. Make sure to maintain the seal with something such as olive oil per the instructions. I have not used it as a water bath canner yet, but it seems like it would work great for that also.
The All American 921 pressure canner is a good all around choice for both pressure canning and water bathing 7 quarts at a time. I first purchased an AA915 from another source. It is well built but too short for water bathing quarts. I wanted a unit that could do both so I returned the 915 and purchased the 921 (which is 3 inches higher) from Overstock.com. The price was good and even better with my new customer discount. They shipped quickly and I received the canner in a few days, even sooner than I was expecting. I have canned about 36 quarts of green beans so far and I like the canner quite well. It is well built and I like having both a pressure gauge and weight. I lightly oiled the metal sealing surfaces (no rubber gasket) with olive oil as instructed and had zero problem with the lid sticking. Comes with two jar racks in case you want to double stack pints. So far I have just done quarts. My friend has a Presto pressure canner. The All American costs more but it is much heavier / thicker construction and no gasket to replace. One minor down side is thicker metal can mean a slightly longer wait for the canner to cool down and depressurize after a batch. That is not a big deal to me because it is so well built. In my opinion the 921 is a good overall size. Big enough to double as a water bath canner for a standard 7 quart batch but small enough to have clearance on most stove tops and not be ridiculously heavy. Even so, it is easier to put it on the stove empty and then add the water and later jars. So far I really like this canner.
This is the best pressure canner on the market. It is a little too big to use for cooking if you are using it on a stove top. I think that this hits the sweet spot price wise over the 915 (15 Quart). It is not much more expensive but can process twice as many pint jars at one time. The metal to metal seal is perfect and there is nothing to wear out. It is very east to use and will last a lifetime. I also have an All American 915 that is probably 40 years old. It has a different pressure mechanism and does not have the overpressure relief but otherwise is almost identical. It still gets used regularly. It is nice to have the two canners so one can be cooling while I am loading up / processing the other. The only caution is to lift the whole assembly by the handles on the side and not the plastic handle on the lid. The plastic handle is for lifting the lid only.
Bought this a few months ago, out of canning season in my area but just had to try it out. The trial run was flawless, the instruction book took all the guess work out of the process. Have used pressure cookers all my life so they do not make me nervous, this is my first one with a pressure gauge, it makes all the difference. Personally believe you will not regret buying this cooker. Comes with a book, recipes and parts list with company contact information...made right here in America a plus for me...
Outstanding heavy duty canner/cooker. The aluminum handles on the lower tub were peened on the corners, abuse of shipping. It's no big deal to me, just a few seconds with a file will rectify it. I just imagine how merchandise is chucked around by UPS.
I grew up with my mom canning every year. So when it came to buying my own canner, I wanted something that lasted my lifetime and could hand down to my daughters. This is the best one around. Yes, it is an investment, but it is the only canner you will ever need. I got the 21.5 quart canner and it just fits on my stove with the vent/microwave overhead. More than enough for the average canner. Just made a double batch of soup, and canned half. And Overstock.com had the best deal! This is heavy and shipping is pricey, but not with Overstock.com.