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Old 19-04-2013, 07:38   #16
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Re: Drinking water

Get a Sea Gull filter.
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Old 19-04-2013, 07:43   #17
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Re: Drinking water

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But ... just because the tank is new, doesn't make it clean. it would be no great joy to have a serious intestinal ailment out on the middle of Lake Superior!
Actually, we routinely drink Lake Superior water directly ... never a problem so far. Get away from the few urban areas on Lake Superior, especially up here on the Canadian side, and it's as clean as any open water source anywhere. I would not drink water from the lower lakes, except perhaps off shore on Lake Huron.

I would agree that 100% clean is an impossible dream. We rough filter, and carry a katadyn hand filter (from camping days). Water borne illness is no laughing matter, so we take it seriously. But life's a risk.
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Old 19-04-2013, 07:46   #18
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Re: Drinking water

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I would never bother to put those sterilizing tablets in the water, makes everything taste like a swimming pool.

I clean my tanks once a year. Just wipe them out, no chemicals, just a mild vinegar solution. I have opaque pipework, black tanks and a charcoal filter. Not much grows in the dark. I always drink the tank water; accepted there is the odd bottle of soda water in the fridge, as I like the bubbles.

I'll carry on until I go down with some lurgy that can be directly attributed to the water supply. If you are too pure, your immune system will never build up any resistance.

The only place on an Atlantic Circuit the mains water was truly undrinkable was Ft. Lauderdale. Flavoured with soap and had a green tinge, probably makes you glow in the dark.

I'm sorry, but if you have ever seen a water tank that has gone foul you'll know that a great many quite disgusting things thrive in the dark. I agree the tablets make everything taste bad, and chlorine is a poison. That's why it works.

And, we aren't talking about being "too pure." We're talking about avoiding serious intestinal ailments while away from medical help. Research has actually shown, for instance, that children raised in super-clean homes are more likely to have allergies than children raised in homes where the housekeeping was a little more lackluster.

My immune system seems to be pretty strong -- I'm 67 and I haven't had the flu (the real flu, influenza) since I was 16.
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Old 19-04-2013, 07:57   #19
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Unhappy Re: Drinking water

I've spent weeks kayaking on Superior with just an old packpack water filter. I think it was a "Pur." I showered ashore of course. Kinda hurts to hear of gray shower water (I hope that's all) getting dumped into what was pristine wilderness. I've got no answers, unfortunately, just concerns.
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Old 19-04-2013, 08:06   #20
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Re: Drinking water

When I've been on Lake Superior (both sailing and sea kayaking), I've either drank the water untreated, filtered it or boiled it. I've also used UV treatment on water from my tank. For showers, I simply fill a sunshower and let it heat up in the sun. Great to have so much fresh water!

I prefer filters such as the MSR with a ceramic element and a bottom that screws directly onto a nalgene or similar water bottle - It's less to juggle and I find the sideways pumping to be easier than the straight up and down pumping motion.

Recently, I purchased a UV treatment system that uses a hand crank, eliminating the need for batteries, but I haven't used it yet. I think it was under $100.
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Old 19-04-2013, 09:09   #21
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Re: Drinking water

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When I've been on Lake Superior (both sailing and sea kayaking), I've either drank the water untreated, filtered it or boiled it. I've also used UV treatment on water from my tank. For showers, I simply fill a sunshower and let it heat up in the sun. Great to have so much fresh water!

I prefer filters such as the MSR with a ceramic element and a bottom that screws directly onto a nalgene or similar water bottle - It's less to juggle and I find the sideways pumping to be easier than the straight up and down pumping motion.

Recently, I purchased a UV treatment system that uses a hand crank, eliminating the need for batteries, but I haven't used it yet. I think it was under $100.

That's a really slick idea!
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Old 19-04-2013, 09:33   #22
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Re: Drinking water

Just get a Pur filter pitcher. For backup, a few gallon jugs of drinking water from the grocery store.
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Old 21-04-2013, 03:53   #23
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Re: Drinking water

I can't advise you about using lake water. No experience.

If you use municipal water carried in your tanks, however, like most of us do, then certainly you can drink it IF: (a) you are in an area where the municipal water is of decent quality; AND (b) you keep your tanks clean; AND (c) you filter the water with something serious, like the Seagull.

I have plastic tanks which are not that old (as the boat is not that old), and I've never had problem with water. I bomb the system with chlorine every couple of years, and take care when filling (rinse out the hose well before sticking it in your tank, or use your own hose if there is any doubt). Never a problem. I filter for drinking and cooking through a Seagull, and the water tastes fine. I've always thought that humping bottled water onto a boat is an asinine waste of time, labor, and money; actually I'm opposed to bottled water altogether.
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Old 21-04-2013, 06:08   #24
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Re: Drinking water

Having enough bottled water on board for the duration of any journey is a wise move, tanks can leak/get contaminated, one source for drinking water on a long journey is not the smartest decision!
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Old 21-04-2013, 06:11   #25
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Re: Drinking water

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I can't advise you about using lake water. No experience.

If you use municipal water carried in your tanks, however, like most of us do, then certainly you can drink it IF: (a) you are in an area where the municipal water is of decent quality; AND (b) you keep your tanks clean; AND (c) you filter the water with something serious, like the Seagull.

I have plastic tanks which are not that old (as the boat is not that old), and I've never had problem with water. I bomb the system with chlorine every couple of years, and take care when filling (rinse out the hose well before sticking it in your tank, or use your own hose if there is any doubt). Never a problem. I filter for drinking and cooking through a Seagull, and the water tastes fine. I've always thought that humping bottled water onto a boat is an asinine waste of time, labor, and money; actually I'm opposed to bottled water altogether.

My "if" is pointed not at municipal water but at the very real problem of keeping tanks clean.

I think the people who have some kind of secondary filtration or UV light approach are really on the right track.

Odds are you wouldn't die -- but you might just ... want to for a while ... without it. I know several medically trained people -- an RN, an MD and a DDS -- none of whom will drink from their very carefully kept water tanks. They drink bottled water. These are people I listen to regarding medical sailing advice.

The MD also says that barnacles carry some particularly nasty bacterial, and that if you cut yourself on barnacles, you need to get to your MD and be on a course of antibiotics immediately. But then I *also* know very few people do that. She convinced me, and I would do it, myself. (I know -- topic drift!)
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Old 21-04-2013, 06:46   #26
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In Mexico we get tap water which goes in our tank and we do drink it in small quantities but primarily we suck down bottled water.

It's a taste thing. Mexican municipal water tastes like ****.

Regarding life in the tank we had red algae off and on but I don't think anyone's getting "infected" from red algae.

When we put our watermaker in the dynamics will change.

Plenty of people in Mexico drink tap water pumped into cisterns on top of their homes.
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Old 21-04-2013, 06:56   #27
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Re: Drinking water

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It's a taste thing. Mexican municipal water tastes like ****.
Is that experience talking?

I never have noticed many people in the marina launch taking bottles of water out to their boats. This fear of drinking out ones boat water tanks must be a CF member thing.
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Old 21-04-2013, 07:09   #28
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Re: Drinking Water

I've been d'inking wate' f'om my plastic wate' tanks fo' 43 yea's and thus fa' it's only cost me the use of one lette'!
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Old 21-04-2013, 07:14   #29
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Re: Drinking water

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Is that experience talking?

I never have noticed many people in the marina launch taking bottles of water out to their boats. This fear of drinking out ones boat water tanks must be a CF member thing.

(shrugs) I see it all the time. But remember, I have had such a "special" experience here, with my scuppers hooked up to my water tank ... And really, I have no idea how well it was maintained before I bought the boat.
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Old 21-04-2013, 07:16   #30
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Re: Drinking Water

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I've been d'inking wate' f'om my plastic wate' tanks fo' 43 yea's and thus fa' it's only cost me the use of one lette'!
Funny! A 'iot, in fact!

Beliefs vary. We had an extended discussion here once about whether unrefrigerated mayonnaise is dangerous or not. I continue to use unrefrigerated mayonnaise with absolutely no consequences, but I know that a LOT of people -- maybe the majority -- will never believe it's safe. Beliefs are beliefs.
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