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Old 10-08-2012, 05:04   #31
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Re: Planning a Trip to the Bahamas

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Originally Posted by taezow View Post
Hum?? If we are this far south we could do the southern Bahamas instead of the northern area. The weather should be nicer. Must be a reason why most people say go to the Abacos. Dang so many options what is one to do.
A lot depends on you. In addition to the points provided by others above, there is enough of a temperature difference at least in winter to be a factor. Many people that prefer the Exumas describe the Abacos in winter as too cold. For myself, I'd rather sleep under a light blanket (Abacos) then spend the afternoon mopping sweat from my brow. So your air temperature comfort zone could be a factor.

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
What's water going for these days? Enough to make a watermaker viable financially? We had a friend who sailed to Mexico and thought a watermaker, after his solar panels, was his best investment. When he returned he sold it for 80% of his purchase price. Made a good trip great.
I built a huge spreadsheet comparing 12VDC watermakers (I didn't look at any engine driven or 120VAC units). Every time I think about a watermaker I update the spreadsheet and talk myself out of it again. *grin* What I found is that for a three-year cruise (the amortization period), assuming a self install that does not require a haul, assuming no significant non-warranty service, and neglecting engine/generator run time costs for recharging batteries you get an effective water cost of $0.30/USGw to $0.50/USGw.

I suggest that there are two important metrics for evaluating watermaker cost: initial acquisition/installation cost and Ah/USGw. Across manufacturers of watermakers I found there is a "sweet spot" for the latter: you get the most amount of water (1.2-1.3 Ah/USGw) for watermakers around 300-400 USGw/day.

Since the worst thing you can do to a watermaker is not use it, I assumed regular use (3 hours run time every other day). For one watermaker in the sweet spot (the Spectra Cape Horn) that leads to a water budget of 18 gpd - pretty good. Since initial cost dominates the cost per gallon goes UP if you use less water. Cut back to 12 gpd and the effective cost per gallon rises by 75% to about $0.50/USGw. Conclusion: if you are conservative with water use a watermaker will not pay for itself for most cruisers; if you use a lot of fresh water (or have non-economic factors like cruising grounds where water is simply not available) it makes sense as a luxury item - barely.

What I did instead was to buy two 5 gallon water jugs and put long wires on my spare pressure water pump. I plug the pump into a power point on the boat and pump water from the jugs in the dinghy into my tanks.
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Old 10-08-2012, 05:19   #32
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Re: Planning a Trip to the Bahamas

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Originally Posted by onestepcsy37;
i personally use tank water for everything but the admiral prefers bottled water for drinking and some cooking.
If you have pressured water, try adding a Brita water filter to your faucet, it's small and gives you bottle water quality water.
TJ
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Old 10-08-2012, 06:39   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teejayevans
If you have pressured water, try adding a Brita water filter to your faucet, it's small and gives you bottle water quality water.
TJ
We use a Brita too - couldn't do without it.
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Old 10-08-2012, 21:54   #34
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Re: Planning a Trip to the Bahamas

teejayevans -

we use a general electric water filter which seems to do a good job. but the admiral has her little idiosyncracies and it's best just to let her do what she feels comfortable with...

as for buying water, we found it reasonably cheap in marsh harbor and treasure cay abacos; there is a modern water system on abaco island which helps keep the cost of water down in that area. even green turtle cay has run a pipe across the sea of abaco from abaco island to tap into their water system.

when we took on diesel and gasoline at treasure cay, we also ran their water hose into our tanks and filled them up. they had no way of measuring how much water we took so the dockmaster just said, 'how about eight dollars?'. i passed him ten and we parted friends. i think i took on about fifty gallons as we hadn't filled up since leaving west palm beach about two weeks before...
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Old 11-08-2012, 12:27   #35
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Re: Planning a Trip to the Bahamas

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Originally Posted by onestepcsy37 View Post
teejayevans -

we use a general electric water filter which seems to do a good job. but the admiral has her little idiosyncracies and it's best just to let her do what she feels comfortable with...

as for buying water, we found it reasonably cheap in marsh harbor and treasure cay abacos; there is a modern water system on abaco island which helps keep the cost of water down in that area. even green turtle cay has run a pipe across the sea of abaco from abaco island to tap into their water system.

when we took on diesel and gasoline at treasure cay, we also ran their water hose into our tanks and filled them up. they had no way of measuring how much water we took so the dockmaster just said, 'how about eight dollars?'. i passed him ten and we parted friends. i think i took on about fifty gallons as we hadn't filled up since leaving west palm beach about two weeks before...
I don't understand, you said you buy bottled water, none of the above is qualifies as bottled water?
Tom
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Old 11-08-2012, 13:11   #36
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Re: Planning a Trip to the Bahamas

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Originally Posted by teejayevans View Post
I don't understand, you said you buy bottled water, none of the above is qualifies as bottled water?
Tom
Buying bottled drinking water for one person on board to drink and buying water to fill up the boat tank(s) are not mutually exclusive water purchases. One can do both.

The cost and availability of fresh water relates directly to the economics of whether or not to invest in a desalinating system.
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Old 11-08-2012, 20:51   #37
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Re: Planning a Trip to the Bahamas

yes, you read it right, teejayevans. the boat (csy 37) holds about 150 gals water in two tanks that feed the water pump to the galley and head sinks as well as the shower. the galley sink has a general electric filter on it. for me that would be just fine.

but the admiral prefers her drinking water from bottles, so we have them too. it means finding storage space but the csy 37 has lots of storage for a monohull and we can easily tuck away 20+ gallon bottles, enough for about a month. the down side of this is carrying the water bottles to the boat....
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