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Old 17-01-2013, 12:04   #346
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

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Originally Posted by wolfenzee View Post
Installing a watermaker so as to reduce water tankage is inviting disaster. You should have enough tankage on board to allow for watermaker failure at any point in your passage.
A similar consideration to weight of a watermaker is space requirements, some modular designs are useful there.
Crossing the Gulf heading directly for Carribean is hardly heading into the unknown for Tellie. Most would also be carrying some bottled liquids.
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Old 17-01-2013, 12:15   #347
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

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Reducing tankage doesn't necessarily invite disaster as long as you carry enough water to keep you alive should the watermaker fail. Perhaps inconvenience, but not disaster.
That is what I said, basically. Having enough water to complete the passage if the water maker fails

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The tanks may not be full at the time a watermaker fails.
If you use your watermaker regularly, you will keep tanks topped off and will not have to backflush it.

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Crossing the Gulf heading directly for Carribean is hardly heading into the unknown for Tellie. Most would also be carrying some bottled liquids.
I was talking about people that would be making longer passages than there tankage would allow because they were relying on a watermaker
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Old 17-01-2013, 12:43   #348
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

Maybe I didn't make myself clear (It's been known to happen). There is a big difference between reducing tankage and reducing the amount you carry. I have 200 gallons capacity on my boat. Dropping to only 40-60 gallons to make my next anchorage in a lighter mode is no more disastrous than a Gemini owner with a total of 60 gallon tankage capacity making the same trip. But it's true one should never rely on a watermaker to get them through weeks or months long passages. It should only then be used for frequent topping off as you go. But for the vast majority of cruisers most are making short jaunts and trips where in an emergency water can be had within a days sail. So lightening your load of 1000+ pounds of water, especially on a Cat, makes perfect sense.
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Old 17-01-2013, 13:20   #349
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

Of course if you are like me and only drink beer, you don't need so much water in the first place.
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Old 17-01-2013, 18:14   #350
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

If you are "island hopping" you might want to look into a filtration system that would take fresh (though not necessarily safe) water and make it potable.
I have a two stage filter system on my boat first filter consists of a pre-filter, carbon filter and 2 micron filter that takes out particulate mater, biologicals such as Giardia & Cryptosporidum, lead (probably some other heavy metals too) and a few other nasties. secound stage ceramic 0.2micron takes care of e coli.
I have three portable 15gallon jugs, one is dedicated to unfiltered water even though all water goes through theses at the galley sink.
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Old 17-01-2013, 19:10   #351
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

Has anyone operated a watermaker in a lake or river while cruising say down Kentucky Lake, Tenn-Tom, ICW or GICW? If you have, does the river or lake water reduce the time between pre-filter changes substantially? If it does, what is the average amount of water that can be made before changing the filters compared to the GICW or open water in the Gulf?

Thanks for your actual experience. I'm thinking about getting a 20 GPH CruiseRO. I operate my generator continuously while cruising in hot or cold weather, so power consumption is not an issue.
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Old 17-01-2013, 21:08   #352
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

OK here is my take on the issue. So far we have spent a maximum of over 100 days without a marina visit.

Firstly to the people who think you cannot just a take a production boat and sail around the world, well this is nonsense. yes we have pimped our boat a bit, but these have been comfort and ease of use issues. we hold 600l of water in tanks and with a crew of 4 did not use this crossing the atlantic.

We have a katadyn40e unit, the only reason i have this was i got it cheap, can a small water maker keep up with our needs? yes it can but it needs to run 4-8 hours per day, this included showering every 3 days and using a portable twin tub to do our laundry (we do wash in sea water then rinse in fresh). (this is for 2 people on board)


Would i prefer a higher output water maker, hell yes!!!!

We still have to ration water, which kinda defeats the purpose of having a water maker.

The high amp dc systems, make little sense unless you have a large wind/solar array (we have 320w of solar) i find i can run the 40e up to 8 hours per day if the sun is good on a cloudy day it is not running.

if you have a generator then a decent output 110/240v system is the way to go.

while the 40e is not too noisy, having a kerplunk chug noise 6 hours a day is not nice.


another thing to think is maintenance , the 40e needs 100 hours run time to fill our tanks, thats a lot of wear n tear!

Lastly as others have mentioned , there are times where you cannot run the water maker, meaning you have a backlog to make up for later.

I cannot stress that if you have a generator then get a 110/240v high output system, if running 12v only then a dc system of 15amp or less more than 15a and youll probably have to run the engine to power it.
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Old 17-01-2013, 22:50   #353
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

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Originally Posted by stevensuf View Post
OK here is my take on the issue. So far we have spent a maximum of over 100 days without a marina visit.

Firstly to the people who think you cannot just a take a production boat and sail around the world, well this is nonsense. yes we have pimped our boat a bit, but these have been comfort and ease of use issues. we hold 600l of water in tanks and with a crew of 4 did not use this crossing the atlantic.

We have a katadyn40e unit, the only reason i have this was i got it cheap, can a small water maker keep up with our needs? yes it can but it needs to run 4-8 hours per day, this included showering every 3 days and using a portable twin tub to do our laundry (we do wash in sea water then rinse in fresh). (this is for 2 people on board)


Would i prefer a higher output water maker, hell yes!!!!

We still have to ration water, which kinda defeats the purpose of having a water maker.

The high amp dc systems, make little sense unless you have a large wind/solar array (we have 320w of solar) i find i can run the 40e up to 8 hours per day if the sun is good on a cloudy day it is not running.

if you have a generator then a decent output 110/240v system is the way to go.

while the 40e is not too noisy, having a kerplunk chug noise 6 hours a day is not nice.


another thing to think is maintenance , the 40e needs 100 hours run time to fill our tanks, thats a lot of wear n tear!

Lastly as others have mentioned , there are times where you cannot run the water maker, meaning you have a backlog to make up for later.

I cannot stress that if you have a generator then get a 110/240v high output system, if running 12v only then a dc system of 15amp or less more than 15a and youll probably have to run the engine to power it.

Showering only every 3 days!

Quote "Would i prefer a higher output water maker, hell yes!!!!

We still have to ration water, which kinda defeats the purpose of having a water maker." Quote


Can't blame you wanting to replace your Katadyn40e. You back up the experience of most real cruisers.

Particually those with women on board.
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Old 17-01-2013, 23:19   #354
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

I need to swap my woman for one with short hair, that alone would halve my water needs!
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Old 17-01-2013, 23:26   #355
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

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I need to swap my woman for one with short hair, that alone would halve my water needs!
You could always give her a hair cut. Hope she doesn't read this.
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Old 17-01-2013, 23:34   #356
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

As many have said, if you have females on board then for the sake of harmony get a high output water maker, if blokes then the money would be better spent on beer!
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Old 18-01-2013, 01:27   #357
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

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Of course if you are like me and only drink beer, you don't need so much water in the first place.
Oh I agree, but then you need to increase the refrigeration capacity = bigger batteries, more solar etc. Seems you just can't win unless you start drinking whiskey like the scots - just neat.

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Old 18-01-2013, 11:58   #358
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

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Originally Posted by downunder View Post
Showering only every 3 days!

Quote "Would i prefer a higher output water maker, hell yes!!!!

We still have to ration water, which kinda defeats the purpose of having a water maker." Quote


Can't blame you wanting to replace your Katadyn40e. You back up the experience of most real cruisers.

Particually those with women on board.
A friend of mine, who lives at the dock, "bathes" 6 days a week in the galley sink and once a week takes a shower on land. Even though he has constant access to water from shore, he is as conservative with water as you would be at sea. People on land waste a tremendous amount of resources, energy, water, food (it was just published that between Europe and the US 50% of all food is thrown out). On a boat you learn what you really need and don't need.
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Old 18-01-2013, 14:11   #359
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

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A friend of mine, who lives at the dock, "bathes" 6 days a week in the galley sink and once a week takes a shower on land.
Wow that sounds like the life for me.............NOT! But conserving water that gets "produced" in land sources and from the municipal water supply is a LOT different from making fresh water from seawater.

I'm going to have the biggest practical watermaker I can support on the boat and not feel bad at all by using all the water I can with it!
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Old 18-01-2013, 14:16   #360
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Re: Which Watermaker To Choose

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Oh I agree, but then you need to increase the refrigeration capacity = bigger batteries, more solar etc. Seems you just can't win unless you start drinking whiskey like the scots - just neat.

That's why I'm installing a beermaker on VALIS. Problem solved!
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