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Old 12-11-2015, 11:36   #31
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

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Originally Posted by jeremiason View Post
We were absolute water hogs when we were cruising and were glad we went with the largest available 12v water maker on the market in 2009, the Spectra Newport 400 II.


After installing the water maker I reduced my water tankage from 210 to 160 gallons for more storage in the bilges.


We used fresh water toilets, took showers regularly and even had a hose on the transom for a fresh water flush hose to the outboard motor. The hose also doubled as a faucet when cruising neighbors needed a little water or I need to wash down the cockpit.


We did that by using our Newport 400 to its maximum capacity every 3-4 days. We would always see between 15 and 17 GPH depending on the raw water quality and temperature.


My figures indicated that I was using about 1.25 AH for each gallon of fresh water produced.


What hasn't been mentioned is the Spectra Newports LIKE LOTS OF VOLTAGE and the difference between 11 volts and 13.75 can be 1-4 gallons of product per hour.


We had about 950 watts of solar on board with a MPPT controller which was giving us more that enough AHs to live comfortably. Normally, we would run out of hot water long before we would run out of power, which necessitated running the GenSet for a while.


When we ran the GenSet, we always ran the water maker to ensure it was getting full voltage and making the maximum amount of water, thus shortening its run time.


If I had to do it over I would buy the same watermaker again!
Forgot about flushing the outboard. I'm starting to get sold on this thing! Interesting point on voltage. I would plan on running either ( mostly) the genset with battery charger or engine alternator whilst in operation so in theory the unit could potentially run at over 14 volts.

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Old 12-11-2015, 15:26   #32
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

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Originally Posted by Paul Elliott View Post
That RJ45 connector is *NOT* an ethernet plug. It carries power and control signals to the display / control board. Definitely not something you can plug into your computer.
Not without building an adaptor and figuring out the protocol they use. Im guessing its a serial interface with a simple protocol...dont see any reason for it to be complicated. You could probably do this with something simple and cheap like an Arduino, but would take a lot of hours of effort....could do some cool things with that, but a lot easier just to buy another control panel.
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Old 12-11-2015, 15:36   #33
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

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Originally Posted by jeremiason View Post

.....even had a hose on the transom for a fresh water flush hose to the outboard motor. The hose also doubled as a faucet when cruising neighbors needed a little water or I need to wash down the cockpit.

.....

We did that by using our Newport 400 to its maximum capacity every 3-4 days.
We have a similar freshwater hose set up in the cockpit (long enough to reach transom). Gets used as shower or just to rinse the salt water off. In the San Blas the Kuna often come up wanting water and its handy for that.

We run our Catalina (12GPH) for about 2 hours a day during peak solar. 375W of solar covers that plus our other household loads. More, sometimes much more, if we have guests aboard...its nice not to have to be the water nazi.
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Old 12-11-2015, 18:17   #34
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeremiason View Post
We were absolute water hogs when we were cruising and were glad we went with the largest available 12v water maker on the market in 2009, the Spectra Newport 400 II.


After installing the water maker I reduced my water tankage from 210 to 160 gallons for more storage in the bilges.


We used fresh water toilets, took showers regularly and even had a hose on the transom for a fresh water flush hose to the outboard motor. The hose also doubled as a faucet when cruising neighbors needed a little water or I need to wash down the cockpit.


We did that by using our Newport 400 to its maximum capacity every 3-4 days. We would always see between 15 and 17 GPH depending on the raw water quality and temperature.


My figures indicated that I was using about 1.25 AH for each gallon of fresh water produced.


What hasn't been mentioned is the Spectra Newports LIKE LOTS OF VOLTAGE and the difference between 11 volts and 13.75 can be 1-4 gallons of product per hour.


We had about 950 watts of solar on board with a MPPT controller which was giving us more that enough AHs to live comfortably. Normally, we would run out of hot water long before we would run out of power, which necessitated running the GenSet for a while.


When we ran the GenSet, we always ran the water maker to ensure it was getting full voltage and making the maximum amount of water, thus shortening its run time.


If I had to do it over I would buy the same watermaker again!
Excellant point and catch on the low voltage jeremiason . Spectras are certainly voltage sensitive because of their design to be as efficient as possible. I'm surprised at 11 volts the system did not shut down in a "LOW VOLTAGE" alarm on the panel. It wasn't until recently I found out that not all control boards are programmed for the low and high voltage alarm so yours may be one of them.


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Old 12-11-2015, 18:22   #35
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

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Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
We have a similar freshwater hose set up in the cockpit (long enough to reach transom). Gets used as shower or just to rinse the salt water off. In the San Blas the Kuna often come up wanting water and its handy for that.

We run our Catalina (12GPH) for about 2 hours a day during peak solar. 375W of solar covers that plus our other household loads. More, sometimes much more, if we have guests aboard...its nice not to have to be the water nazi.

Just a note belizesailor if you did not already know. We are now upgrading the older Cataina300 units if the feed pump fails to a more powerful feed pump head. We've been working on this for a few years. You can replace your old pump head with the new one no problem, same size and bolt up if yours ever fails. This would give your system a capacity to make 15 gallons per hour.

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Old 12-11-2015, 18:23   #36
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

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Originally Posted by Reefmagnet View Post
I picked up a good used Spectra Newport 400 watermaker for our boat last week. It's more capacity then required but it was an offer too good to refuse. I'm intending to break the unit down into components sans electronics and distribute it's bit's and pieces around the boat and make it an entirely manually operated system. So far so good, but ideally I'd like to reduce it's product output by around half (~ 30 lph) if feasible as I think this would better match our tankage and usage.

I'm seeking opinions on whether it would be possible to either run the existing low pressure pump at reduced speed using speed controller (which I'll be using for fresh water flushing anyhow), or to replace the pump altogether with a smaller shurflo unit?

Thanks!
Reduce the duty cycle.

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Old 13-11-2015, 05:10   #37
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

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Originally Posted by Tellie View Post
Just a note belizesailor if you did not already know. We are now upgrading the older Cataina300 units if the feed pump fails to a more powerful feed pump head. We've been working on this for a few years. You can replace your old pump head with the new one no problem, same size and bolt up if yours ever fails. This would give your system a capacity to make 15 gallons per hour.

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Cool....I think I hear my feed pump making funny noises.

My original failed after about 20 hours of operation...just long enough for me to be in the D-R-Y Tortugas. Bad batch of pumps apparently. Replaced under warranty and has been humming along ever since, over 10 years now.

Is there an upgrade offering for this or is it just buy the new pump? Just the head or the whole pump?
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Old 13-11-2015, 06:09   #38
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

This has probably already been said but I'll say it anyway. Don't downsize, just use what you're lucky enough to have. You have the entirety of the world's oceans as your water source. Waste as much as you want!
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Old 13-11-2015, 06:50   #39
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

Yeah, my thinkings kind of changed!

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Old 15-11-2015, 05:38   #40
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

Quote:
Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
Cool....I think I hear my feed pump making funny noises.

My original failed after about 20 hours of operation...just long enough for me to be in the D-R-Y Tortugas. Bad batch of pumps apparently. Replaced under warranty and has been humming along ever since, over 10 years now.

Is there an upgrade offering for this or is it just buy the new pump? Just the head or the whole pump?

Unfortunately there is no upgrade offering, just a simple replacement of the pump head itself utilizing your existing motor.

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Old 15-11-2015, 06:17   #41
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Re: Spectra Watermaker downgrade?

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Unfortunately there is no upgrade offering, just a simple replacement of the pump head itself utilizing your existing motor.

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Cost of the head?
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