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Old 19-10-2015, 03:40   #136
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Re: Water maker or not?

We cruised on a Columbia 26 for two years. Not a lot of tankage. We built our own watermaker using a General TT9111 pump. We had an Atomic 4 to which we added a pulley on the front. No clutch, loosen the pump bracket, slip on the belt, tighten, and run the motor for an hour to get 16 gallons. We used three way valves to switch between the sink and tank for the output water, and another for the intake. When the tank was full I would fill a small bucket at the sink, put the intake hose in the bucket and fill the system with fresh water. Never had a problem. It was a little less convenient than the off the shelf, flip a switch models, but worked for us. If we had a bigger boat with plenty of tankage, I would have passed on the watermaker and spent the money on Rum.
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Old 19-10-2015, 05:08   #137
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Re: Water maker or not?

I'm in the midst of installing a Spectra on my boat. We're going RTW so we will not be in marinas very often. If you plan to anchor most of the time you'll need water. If you plan to marina hop - spend the money on gin

Unless you have a strong back and a real interest in lugging water cans and ferrying them out ot your boat in the dinghy, buy a watermaker.
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Old 19-10-2015, 07:05   #138
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Re: Water maker or not?

I want to stay away from marina's as much as possible. They are usually crummy places to be. Agee the water quality around marina's is terrible.

My estimate of a house shower of 25 - 30 gallons. Remember in a house the water flows at approx 2 gallon per minute. So a 10 minute shower will use 20 gallons.

When others are showering I listen to the water pump and wonder if it is ever going to shut off. Once I noticed the water pump running for a long time. Found my girlfriend washing 1 fork. Trying to get food out of the prongs. I know I could have cleaned that fork with 1/20th the water. It is now a running joke. 'You want a shower or wash a fork'.

I went back and looked at boats on-line. Looked at a dozen boats in the 33' to 38' foot range. Found zero with a water maker.

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Old 19-10-2015, 07:09   #139
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Re: Water maker or not?

Unless the boat has been cruised long term there is no reason to have a watermaker. You're better off adding a new unit to whatever you purchase anyway


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Old 19-10-2015, 07:11   #140
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Re: Water maker or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tuffr2 View Post
I want to stay away from marina's as much as possible. They are usually crummy places to be. Agee the water quality around marina's is terrible.

My estimate of a house shower of 25 - 30 gallons. Remember in a house the water flows at approx 2 gallon per minute. So a 10 minute shower will use 20 gallons.

When others are showering I listen to the water pump and wonder if it is ever going to shut off. Once I noticed the water pump running for a long time. Found my girlfriend washing 1 fork. Trying to get food out of the prongs. I know I could have cleaned that fork with 1/20th the water. It is now a running joke. 'You want a shower or wash a fork'.

I went back and looked at boats on-line. Looked at a dozen boats in the 33' to 38' foot range. Found zero with a water maker.

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Not sure if they are found in the US, but in europe you can buy a small insert that reduces your 2 gallons a minute to less than 1/4 of that.

Not many boats are equipped with a watermaker unless they have been serious blue water boats. Used watermakers generally sell for something like 1/2 to 3/4 of a new one - so boat owners will frequently dismount them and sell them before selling the boat.
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Old 19-10-2015, 07:43   #141
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Re: Water maker or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by carstenb View Post
Not sure if they are found in the US, but in europe you can buy a small insert that reduces your 2 gallons a minute to less than 1/4 of that.
Shower heads in the US for the last 20 or so years have come with them, most heads are now made with a restricted orifice in them that isn't removable, I drill them out.
Water usage in a regular house isn't comparable to a boat, reason is a house has an in-exhaustible supply, water in the US is cheap, why conserve?

I don't have a watermaker yet, but think it will make it so that we don't conserve water on board either, sort of like the house.
I hope to have enough Solar so I don't worry about power and a watermaker so I don't worry about water
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Old 19-10-2015, 08:03   #142
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Re: Water maker or not?

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Originally Posted by smj View Post
Glad y'all have started your journey. Where in Florida are you keeping the boat? Let me know how the watermaker works for you. We've never felt the need but it may be in our future. I've always said when I get to the age where I can't physically take care of my boat or do the needed chores I would sell her. Hopefully the watermaker may be a way for us to extend our time on the water.


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We went to Pensacola by then backtracked to a friend's house and dock at orange beach, Alabama. We come back in late Feb and then continue thru Florida and into Bahamas.

I had a couple of reasons for watermaker, plus I found a sweet deal on new in box two year old unit. We wanted to see more remote Bahamas, where watrr will be an issue, and not be forced to leave because water low. Plus I have been nursing a rotator cuff tear for years and didn't want logging water jugs to make that worse. All else I do in the boat and right now our boat has never looked better or been more prepared for journey in ten years. Plus we are still kicking strong. We are retired effective Nov 1. Just shutting down some things in Houston and dealing with parental things so we can check out for five months next year.
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Old 19-10-2015, 08:15   #143
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Re: Water maker or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by zboss View Post
How many dB's of noise does a Spectra make?
Zboss,

I need to use the dB meter app on my phone next time it is running...

Our Spectra [older, modular Santa Cruz model] is mounted in the [sound insulated] engine room. When it is running, the only discernible noise is from the 2 raw water feed pumps. I have to put my hand on the high pressure Clark pump [and look for the small pressure spikes on the pressure gauge] to confirm it is cycling when I'm in the engine room.

When out of the engine room- and running only on batteries [i.e., no engine or generator running...]- we can barely tell the water maker is running. You get an ear for it, like your water pump: you hear it if all is quiet and you listen carefully, but others don't... I need to install an "ON" pilot light in the electrical panel so I don't forget about it...

For reference, we average very close to 1.2 - 1.5 12VDC AH/Gallon in cooler raw water [i.e., ours makes 10-12 GPH in water cooler than ~50F; 12-15 GPH in warmer water...]

We typically run it every few days [as it prefers longer run periods per the manufacturer] and try to do so when motoring or running the generator.

I hope this helps.

Cheers!

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Old 19-10-2015, 08:24   #144
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Re: Water maker or not?

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Originally Posted by tuffr2 View Post
How do people on a sailboat or small Cat. stay clean without fresh non salt water? I see a lot of cruisers without a water maker.

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It depends if you are prepared to endure a camping lifestyle or not.

Wet wipes, pommie showers (armpits, crotch, face but not in that order) and fresh water rinse of salt water showers are your options.

Others can suggest what detergents work in salt water. It takes some getting used to.

My wife and I arent interested in camping. We have 240 gallons of water storage and we consume, on average, 10 gallons a day.

We fill from mains water in the marina and from our water maker while on the move or on the hook.

We also carry 165 gallons of diesel so the watermaker means we dont need to dock just for water.

We plan on cruising both high and low latitudes so an indoor faily shower is a must have for us.

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Old 19-10-2015, 08:30   #145
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Re: Water maker or not?

You guy's that run DC watermakers, how often do you have to run an engine or generator to top up your batteries?

I ask as I'm getting from some very reliable sources that within reason even a very large Solar array isn't by itself going to be able to fully recharge batteries. It's not so much a function of Solar output, but more of a timing thing, that is it takes more time to charge a battery to 100% than there is available sunlight, so it seems that your sort of tied into finding some other means of charging as well, be it a generator or towed generator, fuel cell something.

I'm throwing around options myself, and it seems to come to basically two options, a low output DC watermaker that you run for long times to make water, but they are extremely energy efficient, or an AC watermaker that has very high output, is very inefficient and pretty much requires a generator of some sort, I'm sure they are loud, but will be masked by generator noise, but makes lots of water fast so you don't run the generator long.
Thought process is, if I have to run some kind of engine anyway for battery health, why not make water at the same time?
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Old 19-10-2015, 08:49   #146
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Re: Water maker or not?

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
You guy's that run DC watermakers, how often do you have to run an engine or generator to top up your batteries?

I ask as I'm getting from some very reliable sources that within reason even a very large Solar array isn't by itself going to be able to fully recharge batteries. It's not so much a function of Solar output, but more of a timing thing, that is it takes more time to charge a battery to 100% than there is available sunlight, so it seems that your sort of tied into finding some other means of charging as well, be it a generator or towed generator, fuel cell something.

I'm throwing around options myself, and it seems to come to basically two options, a low output DC watermaker that you run for long times to make water, but they are extremely energy efficient, or an AC watermaker that has very high output, is very inefficient and pretty much requires a generator of some sort, I'm sure they are loud, but will be masked by generator noise, but makes lots of water fast so you don't run the generator long.
Thought process is, if I have to run some kind of engine anyway for battery health, why not make water at the same time?
We're running hte Spectra Ventura. About 8 amps for 30 liters. We're expecting to be able to keep our 600 AH AGM battery bank charged with only solar (time will tell)
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Old 19-10-2015, 09:21   #147
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Re: Water maker or not?

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About 8 amps for 30 liters. We're expecting to be able to keep our 600 AH AGM battery bank charged with only solar (time will tell)
Oh Lord, your going to invoke the Engineering nomenclature Police now
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Old 19-10-2015, 09:36   #148
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Re: Water maker or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
You guy's that run DC watermakers, how often do you have to run an engine or generator to top up your batteries?

I ask as I'm getting from some very reliable sources that within reason even a very large Solar array isn't by itself going to be able to fully recharge batteries. It's not so much a function of Solar output, but more of a timing thing, that is it takes more time to charge a battery to 100% than there is available sunlight, so it seems that your sort of tied into finding some other means of charging as well, be it a generator or towed generator, fuel cell something.

I'm throwing around options myself, and it seems to come to basically two options, a low output DC watermaker that you run for long times to make water, but they are extremely energy efficient, or an AC watermaker that has very high output, is very inefficient and pretty much requires a generator of some sort, I'm sure they are loud, but will be masked by generator noise, but makes lots of water fast so you don't run the generator long.
Thought process is, if I have to run some kind of engine anyway for battery health, why not make water at the same time?
A64 -- we have a Katadyn that makes 3.5 gal per hour and used it extensively when we were in the western Carib and ran it about 2 or 3 hours a day. It takes about 8 amps and we have 400w of solar and it worked pretty well for us. Never had an issue with needing to run the engine for the water maker.
In the Med we ran it across the Greek Islands as there is a real shortage of water there and ran it when we were underway by sail or motor. Again with the sun where it was we had enough power for most of the summer. Now in a marina for the winter we pickled it and our solar can not quite keep up as the sun went south and daylight is getting short. But for most of the summer it was good.
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Old 19-10-2015, 09:45   #149
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Re: Water maker or not?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tuffr2 View Post
I want to stay away from marina's as much as possible. They are usually crummy places to be. Agee the water quality around marina's is terrible.

My estimate of a house shower of 25 - 30 gallons. Remember in a house the water flows at approx 2 gallon per minute. So a 10 minute shower will use 20 gallons.

When others are showering I listen to the water pump and wonder if it is ever going to shut off. Once I noticed the water pump running for a long time. Found my girlfriend washing 1 fork. Trying to get food out of the prongs. I know I could have cleaned that fork with 1/20th the water. It is now a running joke. 'You want a shower or wash a fork'.

I went back and looked at boats on-line. Looked at a dozen boats in the 33' to 38' foot range. Found zero with a water maker.

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I am not sure you are a troll or just have no idea what you are talking about. You said you do not sail, do not have a boat, have never been cruising ect ect. I suggest before you go investing in a multi thousand dollar watermaker you actually get some sailing lessons and charter and find out what this life is all about.
When we started 12 years ago a watermaker was the so far down the list that it could not be seen. There were a lot more pressing items like electricity, fuel, navigation, and on and on. We did not even consider a watermaker until we had been out a couple of years and decided to head to the western carib where we knew there would be a shortage of good water.

And maybe just maybe all the boats you are looking at don't have a watermaker as they did not need one. I would like to guess that maybe 1/2 the boats in the Eastern Carib do not have a water maker and your experience with a travel trailer is not even remotely close to what goes on out here.
I know I have done both.
So go take some sailing lessons and then charter and go from there.
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Old 19-10-2015, 10:11   #150
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Re: Water maker or not?

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Originally Posted by carstenb View Post
Not sure if they are found in the US, but in europe you can buy a small insert that reduces your 2 gallons a minute to less than 1/4 of that.
Of course you can:

Water Saver Idea

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Shower heads in the US for the last 20 or so years have come with them, most heads are now made with a restricted orifice in them that isn't removable, I drill them out.
Water usage in a regular house isn't comparable to a boat, reason is a house has an in-exhaustible supply, water in the US is cheap, why conserve?


We are having another drought here in California. We have all sorts of tips & tricks.

10 minute showers aren't one of 'em!
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