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Old 15-07-2012, 21:16   #16
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Very complex system.

Use fewer tanks , skip the infeed holding tank. Run all tanks to a selectable manifold , and use a variable speed pressure pump. Use conventional o ring based plastic piping. The money you'll save will let you buy many spare pumps etc.

Also water is more available then before.

I,d have to say after owning a steel vessel I'm not in favour of integrated tanks, they can hide problems. I now subscribe to the view that everything including tanks should go in and out the companionway. I use manufactured and pressure tested plastic tanks.

Dave
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Old 31-08-2012, 13:21   #17
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Re: Water system design musings

Yes, the integrated tank thing was on my mind recently. Still good to have integrated compartments, just separate the tank liner from the permanent fabric of the hull. More redundancy. Water might be more easily available, but I wouldn't want to be dependent on it when other fingers are in the pie.

Still sticking with the euro high-flow air fittings, seems so much more versatile than hard-plumbed fittings. And the quarentine tank for incoming water, and compartmentalised storage for guaranteed potable water. Must do a presentable sketch for the audience some time.

Another recent musing was another water-source. Fog & dew harvesting. Looking about for how it is done gave me some basics. A large surface-area collector, that radiates heat and has poor heat storage. Shade cloth seems to be a low-tech low-cost approach. Problems afloat would be salt contamination, and mould in storage; but those seem easily handled. Couple it with a rainwater capture system and decent storage capacity, and I can avoid an expensive to buy & run osmosis system.

Still thinking about throughulls and saltwater usage. At the moment the idea is one throughull under the waterline and a seachest to service all raw seawater needs aboard. Outlet throughhull above the waterline. Was thinking of a backwash sand/gravel/carbon filter and a seawater tank, so even the throughhull could be eliminated and a hose slung out a port or over the side when I need raw seawater. Problems are the seawater going rank from the critters in it, hence the filter, but that is weight. Sand/gravel shouldn't be hard to find on the seashore, and carbon from charcoal that I was planning on self-sourcing anyway. Still, it might mean less dead lead ballast, though the free-surface effect and unsecured weight will need looking at.
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Old 30-11-2012, 07:43   #18
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Re: Water System Design Musings

The Namib Desert Beetle gets its water from the air...and now a new company is trying to market the technology. They're aiming at a water bottle that refills itself at a rate up to 3 litres an hour. Given enough funds and motivation, Caribbean entrepeneurs may soon invent a self-refilling rum bottle. Add a cuban cigar that grows as you smoke it, and you can write your own cheques. Not the rubber kind.

Self-filling water bottle takes cues from desert beetle
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Old 30-11-2012, 07:53   #19
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Re: Water System Design Musings

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Originally Posted by micah719 View Post
The Namib Desert Beetle gets its water from the air...and now a new company is trying to market the technology. They're aiming at a water bottle that refills itself at a rate up to 3 litres an hour. Given enough funds and motivation, Caribbean entrepeneurs may soon invent a self-refilling rum bottle. Add a cuban cigar that grows as you smoke it, and you can write your own cheques. Not the rubber kind.

Self-filling water bottle takes cues from desert beetle
what! free water!........now we need to find a way to license and tax it,and then maybe coca cola could franchise it.............
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Old 30-11-2012, 07:56   #20
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Re: Water System Design Musings

The chemtrails will take care of it....just buy the Monsanto Antidote Kit and Airwater License, and you're good to go...
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Old 30-11-2012, 08:07   #21
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Re: Water System Design Musings

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The chemtrails will take care of it....just buy the Monsanto Antidote Kit and Airwater License, and you're good to go...
Hi Micah, how is the system going.
One thing I would put some thought into good deck collection of rainwater. We used this before we got a watermaker and you can quickly collect a lot of water with an efficient system. Even with a watermaker its good to have a backup.

Its helpful to be able to divert the water overboard with the flick of few valves. We cannot and its not the greatest to go on deck in middle of rainstorm after the decks have rinsed.

I agree with the comments to simplify your initial plan, but its worth having a separate tank for marginal water. A lot of places have water that's fine for showering, but not drinking.
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Old 30-11-2012, 08:18   #22
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Re: Water System Design Musings

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I now subscribe to the view that everything including tanks should go in and out the companionway. I use manufactured and pressure tested plastic tanks.

Dave
An admirable but, for many boats, unrealistic goal. My fuel tank is 700 litres so will never get through any orifice in my hull Not looking forward to the day I have to replace it. Will I have to rip the coachroof top off? It's aluminum, unfortunately. I have it cleaned every three years to try to keep standing water out of it.
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Old 30-11-2012, 08:22   #23
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Re: Water System Design Musings

Ah, Noe.....tons of brilliant ideas and advice, much from CF, but no prospect of converting them to reality anytime soon. Still, whenever I do get started, there won't be much sitting around nutting out what to do and where to put it; I can close my eyes and do a virtual tour of the boat already.
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Old 30-11-2012, 08:25   #24
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Re: Water System Design Musings

Micah, sorry for the late response, just saw this thread.

A couple of comments. First - as others have said, don't overcomplicate it.

Second, power budget is not a reason not to have a water maker. Every boat has a surfeit of power at least when the main engine is running , at least if you have a decent alternator (and you should have this in any case). If you're going to be out in the wild without easy access to fresh water taps, then you will be grateful to have a watermaker.

Third - don't reinvent the wheel where supply system is concerned. Pressure pump, pressure accumulator, and plastic plumbing, is all you need. Don't try to make rocket science out of it.

Good luck.
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Old 30-11-2012, 08:32   #25
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Re: Water System Design Musings

Consider foot pumps at the faucets rather than a pressure water system. Our old boat had pressure water everywhere. The new (old) boat has foot pumps. I find I don't miss the pressure water at all, and a tank sure seems to last longer.
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Old 30-11-2012, 08:34   #26
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Re: Water System Design Musings

I'll have to make this brief. Mine plan resembles yours, except it's about 1/3 as complex.

Me, before: Two 100 gallon/400 L SS tanks on welded frames under the sidedecks. About 18-22 inches beneath them of wasted space. Inspection ports stupidly buried under the decks. Single baffles. Single deck feed. No footpumps, all Flojet pressure water.

Me, now and in the design phase: 4 x 50 gal/200 l HDPE tanks, with "chines" to match more closely the hull. Mounted on standoffs bolted to frames and stringers. Unbaffled, because they are smaller in surface area. Tanks are taller, but still have a full 2 feet above their tops to access plumbing and inspection ports. More to the point, I can fit them in without mechanical aid and into the existing space.

Tank vents run to a common vent with a clean-out loop, then up through a brass grab pole in the pilothouse to a valved gooseneck on pilothouse roof. Diesel tank vents run up a separate pole of similar design. No gunwhale vents on my boat.

Small watermaker feeds one tank and is run when the engine is on. Two tanks have either watermaker excess or "municipal" (known potable source) storage. The fourth tank is essentially "washwater": rain collected from the bimini and the pilothouse roof setup. This is fed to a deckwash, Y-valved into the head for freshwater flushes as required, and is available to a footpump at the galley sink. The galley also has a handpump for seawater.

A manifold that isolates each tank acts as a source selector for all footpumps. Pressure water is available through separately plumbed pickups. Hot water is pressure water from the heat-exchanger-fed 6 gallon hot water tank, again, made when under power.

A manual cross-transfer pump in the engine bay can transfer water forward or "high side" for ballasting purposes if necessary, or if a tank requires service.

Every tank will be monitored by the 10-tank Hart Tank Tender system. Four water tanks, three diesel tanks, a diesel daytank and a holding tank give me one spare. Maybe "rum tank"?

That's about it. We anticipate that a modest watermaker will serve us, because we carry a greater capacity in terms of tankage, and we are not going to need potable water for washing/flushing/laundry, but will use collected rainwater.

Hope this helps. Like figuring out battery capacity based on anticipated usage plus a fat margin, water is tough to figure.
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Old 16-12-2012, 13:39   #27
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Re: Water System Design Musings

kon tiki crossed the pacific years ago...with no watermaker...i have a 45 foot double ended steel trawler (converting to motor sailer). i have just welded roof rims onto both roofs with the intention of collecting rainwater as i go along. go to bermuda and you will notice that all roofs are clean and white and all rain water is collected...
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Old 16-12-2012, 17:15   #28
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Re: Water System Design Musings

Not sure what you mean by no power budget for watermaker. No electricity onboard?

Otherwise there are watermakers that use very little energy. Look up the rigs on ocean rowing boats to get my drift.

If no watermaker, then huge tanks, limited consumption, or just stay close to a tap.

Rain, IMHO, dependable only in predominantly rainy areas.

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Old 16-12-2012, 18:13   #29
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Re: Water System Design Musings

There is yet a simpler, cheaper, utterly reliable way: no tanks whatsoever, all your water in re-useable one-gallon plastic jugs such as apple juice comes in. Design racks into your boat that will fit these jugs exactly (start drinking apple juice NOW, and saving the jugs BTW), and you will have easily clean-able, inspectable and replaceable water containers that can be counted to know your exact water supply, shifted about for trim, filled just about anywhere, and easily lifted out of the dinghy. The money you save on plumbing and related garbage will buy a lot of Havana Club, and you will never wonder whether your 50-gallon (or whatever) tank is clean enough. Jugs getting smelly? Wash them out! Jug cracked? What's one jug among 150 others? (never cracked a jug, BTW). I have used this system (if system it can be called) for over three years of full-time living aboard with wife and 3 children, and it has been nothing but satisfactory.
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Old 16-12-2012, 19:25   #30
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Re: Water System Design Musings

Wash them out with what? Also, consumer PET bottles are neither constructed heavily enough to bear up to chafe nor are noticeably airtight once the seal is cracked.

Maybe if you stay close to shore and fill with muni water (with chlorine), this would work. If you go offshore, there's fewer opportunities for clean water (aside from RO or rain) and fewer still options to test it throughly.

If you were to use heavier-walled containers of, say, five gallons, yes, that could work.

Many do, but few go completely tankless if only for the convenience of foot pumps in the head and galley.
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