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Old 02-08-2007, 15:04   #16
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Looks like Spectra is in the lead so far in this particular survey. It is interesting to note that Spectra gets very high remarks on the Cruisers Forum, in this thread and in others, but when you read the ARC Equipment Surveys on the Yachting World Website, for the last three years, Spectra is always rated below SeaFresh and and Sea Recovery watermakers as it relates to user freindliness and reliability.

I know there is big following on SeaFresh watermakers as well as Villiage Marine. Niguel Caulder recently wrote an article in Ocean Navigator and he had chosen an HRO watermaker for his boat; I wonder why he chose HRO?

Anyone care to comment on experiences with other brand watermakers?


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Old 02-08-2007, 17:15   #17
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watermakers

I built my own ,as described in my book, a general TT911 pressure washer 3gpm pump , a housing made from 2 1/2 inch sch 40 stainless pipe and a membrane from US filters. The works cost me around $800 CDN and puts out 540 gallons per day, around 22 gallons per hour. It's pulley driven from the engine . Many problems I've seen with watermakes was from electrics. I throw a belt on in minutes whenever I want to make water.
Wolf ( wolfwatermakers.com) has been using this system since 1998 with no problems. A mechanic , he told me that presure washer pumps with ceramic plungers are far more solidly built, than those built for watermakers, being as they are made for 3500 PSI.
I have no complaints.
I have heard of people using RV non toxic antifreeze for pickling membranes. Does anyone have any eperience with that?
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Old 02-08-2007, 18:57   #18
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Louis,

We've stored our Spectra membrane three times with propylene glycol. Spectra had a reference to it on their website. I've read it is less harmful then the powders. It is easier...no keeping the water warm while it recirculates.

We ran it through in it's pure form...no diluting. Run, soak for a few hours, run, soak, etc over the course of a day. Normal procedure to flush it out as with the powdered chems.

Woked fine. Membrane seems happy.

If you buy some get it where it is easily obtainable. Around 5 bucks a gallon in the usa. In the Philiipines it was 10usd a quart. This was a Dow Chemical product from a drug store in Cebu.

I think you want virgin PG. If it's not virgin there might be unknown stuff in it.

best - Jay
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Old 02-08-2007, 22:32   #19
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Does anyone have any experience with Sea Recovery? Their Ultra Whisper watermaker uses Clark-like pump, so it is about as efficient as Spectra but seems to be built better than Spectra.
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Old 03-08-2007, 03:44   #20
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For storage, Spectra, Horizon, & Sea Recovery, all recommend* using propylene glycol potable water system antifreeze, if available. “It can safely be left in the system for one year and will keep things from freezing in cold conditions”.

* This is not "pickling", nor is it a biocide. Read & understand the manufacturer's instructions & FAQs - including "Freshwater flush after EVERY use."

SPECTRA Watermakers: spectrawatermakers.com/
Spectra Watermachines - Clark Pump is World's Most Efficient Marine Watermaker
Click on: Technical Support
Data Sheets & Owner's Manuals, Diagnostic Service Form, Service Bulletins, and/or Registration

and:

Spectra Watermaker Operator Notes for Cruisers
prepared by Don Wilson, S/V Tackless II (Spectra Technical Representative)
Spectra Watermakers - Operator Notes for Cruisers

See also additional resources at: spectra.net10.net/documents/index.html
Spectra Watermachines - Clark Pump is World's Most Efficient Marine Watermaker
http://spectra.net10.net/documents/index.html
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Old 03-08-2007, 07:14   #21
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Water Maker

Currently on board we have a Katadyn 40E that is DC or manual, we also have 4 130 W 8 amp panels, as well as two 100a 6 watt panels as well as a Airex wind generator. The power consumption is not an issue with us, the actual prefilters are the issue as we have had issues finding them in the past. We run the water maker twice a week to keep it operational. I truly believe that cruisers should look at larger water storage prior to installing a water maker as the up keep of the units and the actual out put compared to the expense does not equal the expense of having to purchase water for a very long time, on top of that living off water made from a water maker requires you to take various minerals/vitamins as the made water does not contain these minerals.
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Old 03-08-2007, 09:08   #22
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Although Reverse Osmosis desalinators remove many dissolved minerals from drinking water, these are easily replaced with normal dietary sources.
Some might prefer the fail-safe measure of utilizing mineral supplements.

Reverse osmosis removes* any molecular compounds smaller in size than water molecules.

Such compounds include salt, minerals* (manganese, iron, fluoride, lead, & calcium), organic chemicals, dissolved solids, and other impurities.

*Iron builds and maintains healthy red blood cells while manganese helps in regulating protein, fat, and carbohydrate metabolism, and calcium is an essential component in the building of bones and the clotting of blood.

When our body fluids become more acidic (than alkaline), the production of free radicals may be increased, resulting in an increased cancer risk.

Because de-mineralized water contains more hydrogen, it is classified as an acidic liquid with a pH below seven. Any time we consume an acidic substance, our body will pull minerals from our teeth and bones to produce bicarbonate to neutralize the acid.

Unfortunately, R/O is not efficient enough at stripping minerals to permit the product water to be used in place of distilled or demineralised water, in flooded batteries.
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Old 03-08-2007, 09:30   #23
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Gord, do you have any references for some of what you say. Stomach acid has a ph of 1 - 3 ( Stomach Acid and Atoms, Molecules, Water, and pH ) so I have serious doubts that anyone can drink water that is that acidic! Rain water has a ph of say 4 +. I haven't ever checked the ph from our watermaker but maybe I should. I don't think anyone can drink enough slightly acidic water to change the ph of their blood. With that said, if they dehydrate enough they can change it. As an aside, I'm not a physician so I'm asking more for my personal edification than blabbering away with the intent of dissing anyone or anything said.

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Old 04-08-2007, 07:45   #24
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Good question(s) Dave.

I’m not a Physician nor Chemist (nor any kind of scientist), so I should exercise morte caution in advising on these very technical subjects.
Please note that I've emphasized my previous statement suggesting that somewhat demineralised water should not be considered a major health concern.

Notwithstanding ...

"potential of Hydrogen - or simply pH is the term representing a level of acidity.
It’s a calculation based on the concentration of hydrogen (“H” or “H+”) ions present in a liquid. The pH scale runs from 1 (or lower, for extremely strong acids) to 14.
- 7 represents a neutral pH (neither acid nor alkali);
- under 7 is acid
- over 7 is alkali (base)

The pH of human blood is slightly alkaline, at about 7.35 to 7.45. Most parts of the body are also this pH, except the stomach which is about 3, and the intestines which are about 8. The urine, hair, skin, and saliva are all normally slightly acidic.

Hard water (high mineral content) is usually slightly alkali (high in pH). Soft water (low mineral) is usually slightly acidic (lower in pH). The mineral in hard water acts as a buffer which reduces the amount of acid in the water. The resulting water will be more alkaline and higher in pH. The reverse is true of demineralised (soft) water. . The pH of pure water is 7. The normal range for pH in surface water systems is 6.5 (acidic) to 8.5 (alkali), and for groundwater systems 6 to 8.5. A range of pH 6.5 to pH 8.5 is recommended by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Reverse Osmosis Water Treatment ~ CMHC
Reverse Osmosis Water Treatment | CMHC

”... Reverse osmosis treatment systems remove minerals like calcium and magnesium from drinking water. In Canada, water is a minor source of such minerals when compared to foods. If you consume a reasonably balanced diet, you do not need to take a mineral supplement when drinking water treated with a reverse osmosis system. Low levels of minerals in drinking water may be a concern for people living in countries with very hot climates ...”

Health risks from drinking demineralized water ~ WHO
WHO | Health risks from drinking demineralized water

Blood, Sweat, and Buffers: pH Regulation During Exercise ~ by Rachel Casiday and Regina Frey (Department of Chemistry, Washington University)/
pH Buffers in the Blood

[i]”... If the pH of the body gets too low (below 7.4), a condition known as acidosis results. This can be very serious, because many of the chemical reactions that occur in the body, especially those involving proteins, are pH-dependent. Ideally, the pH of the blood should be maintained at 7.4. If the pH drops below 6.8 or rises above 7.8, death may occur. Fortunately, we have buffers in the blood to protect against large changes in pH ...

Secondary Drinking Water Regulations: ~ EPA
EPA Ground Water & Drinking Water

Health Canada, Drinking Water Guidelines
www.hc-sc.gc.ca/ehp/ehd/catalogue/general/iyh/dwguide.htm
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Old 10-08-2007, 18:23   #25
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Using a bit of seawater instead of adding salt to your cooking will give you a trace of every mineral on the planet.
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Old 11-08-2007, 06:04   #26
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I bought a used Village Marine Tech 150 unit a marine flea market. It required a new membrane but was otherwise in good shape. Here in the tropics the output is about 4.5 gal/hr and that is more that sufficient for the average cruising boat. My only comment is to ponder the comments from readers who don't want to spend 15-45 cents per gallon at the marinas. Watermakers ain't cheap. The first gallon was water we made was enjoyed immensely as it cost just under $1400. The benefits of RO water aboard are numerous - especially having clean water in suspect areas of the world - but it is not a cost saver.
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Old 17-08-2007, 12:10   #27
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Nice thread, since I haven’t decided on which watermaker to get. I think that they are even more important on a multihull for the weight saving compared to huge water tanks. A rainwater catchment system is also a very lightweight and cost effective supplement. Any good plans out there? A filter such as for RV’s is also a cost effective addition.

Regarding adverse health conditions from drinking RO or demineralized water – there aren’t any – unless you have a very restrictive diet. Using some seawater in cooking is also a great idea. The trivial amount of acidity in the RO water is of absolutely no significance to animal health, and will certainly have no impact on acidosis. It is probably far less concern than chlorine, or contaminants (chemical or biologic) in water from questionable sources.
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Old 17-08-2007, 13:29   #28
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Regarding adverse health conditions from drinking RO or demineralized water – there aren’t any –
I would be careful about statement like that, especially when children are involved. Take fluoride as example. In many areas where people use water from wells (as opposed to municipal water with added fluoride), they have to take fluoride supplements. Iodine is another critical element. You will get it in sea water if you use it instead of salt, but do you know whether enough? But it may not be concern if these and other elements are not removed during RO. I am sure RO system manufactures provide information about which elements are removed from water and need to be supplemented.
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Old 17-08-2007, 14:46   #29
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Thanks for the comments. Your supplemental iodide is from supplemented table salt, or seafood, not from your fresh water.
Fluoride could be a concern in children. It is not found naturally at adequate levels in most drinking water. I suspect that much of the water you would get while cruising where you would want a watermaker, would not be fluoride supplemented anyway. Fortunately, most toothpaste now has fluoride, so this is an easy fix.
The essential trace minerals in drinking water are critical. However, the levels are rather variable, depending on the source, but should be easily replaced with a little dietary variety. That said, buying supplemental minerals is not unreasonable or expensive if it gives you peace of mind - but I wouldn't bother.
Frankly, I suspect that using some seawater for cooking would easily supplement the trace minerals and even save water. In heat of the tropics, with high body salt loss, this extra sodium would also be beneficial.
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Old 17-08-2007, 15:01   #30
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Take fluoride as example. In many areas where people use water from wells (as opposed to municipal water with added fluoride), they have to take fluoride supplements.
While fluoridated water is common in many but not all municpal water systems it does not exist in raw sea water nor any other naturally occuring water source. It's not an essential nutient but has been shown to reduce tooth decay in children when consumed as part of the municipal water system. Other than fluoride treatments from the dentist there really isn't an efficient means to supplement fluoride nor any dietary need to do so at all.

Quote:
You will get it in sea water if you use it instead of salt, but do you know whether enough?
If you eat most any sea food from the ocean you will receive more than sufficent idodine. It is not found in drinking water to any extent that matters. Table salt that has been iodized is the most common Iodine supplement used widely in areas far from the sea. If you are on the ocean and hate seafood it would be a good choice to use iodized salt.

Adding sea water to your food seems like a dumb idea given it contains almost none of the seriously needed vitamins and a scant amount of the rest of the needed mnerals relative to the volume of salt you would ingest.

I think it's a bit off the mark to debate if RO water has enough minerals vs what other kind of water suitable for consumption? I'm not seeing why water is a major source of anything - just water.

Manganese-deficiency is not well documented in humans what so ever while it does occur in plants rarely. There are minute enough amounts of these minerals available that needing a specific source for it is a bit silly.
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