After breaking a few Houdinis I realized it was time to investigate a more reliable alternative. Friends I trust to know recommended Screwpull/Le Creuset.
This works great. I highly recommend it.
I'm hard on wine openers and eventually wore mine out, so I upgraded to the metal version.
It is exorbitant, but well worth the price, if you need an industrial strength wine opener. It has a 10 year warranty. My only complaint would be the plastic defoiler that comes with it. I broke it and replaced it with this beauty. It feels good in the hand and does a great job cutting foil.
I also have a defoiler that I don't need to worry about losing. I take it on picnics and when traveling. If it breaks, $12 to Amazon and it shows up wherever I am two days later.
I wanted to like the Vacu Vin, but could never figure it out. It looks cool, I'll give it that.