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Old 14-11-2014, 11:46   #1
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Watermaker on a Leopard 46

We have recently purchased a 2008 Leopard 46 for long-term cruising. I would like to install a water-maker myself. Any suggestions on installation and model would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 14-11-2014, 15:16   #2
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Re: Watermaker on a Leopard 46

Give Rich a call here...Cruise RO Water & Power: Watermakers for Boats & Yachts. He'll answer all your questions. You'll walk away educated about watermakers, plus he's a super nice guy that really cares about his customers...
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Old 14-11-2014, 15:51   #3
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Re: Watermaker on a Leopard 46

Aubrey,

no recommendation of brand, although I am happy with my Sea Recovery. But a definite recommendation for the installation: Install the intake as far forward as possible - especially forward of toilet and/or washing machine outlet. We have it the other way round, and it makes it impossible to run the washing machine while making water, although the generator could support both. In long term cruising you are going to be at anchor most of the time, and most of the time the wind will push the water from front to back...

Oliver
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Old 14-11-2014, 16:22   #4
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Re: Watermaker on a Leopard 46

Thanks for your quick replies Oliver and Sid.

...By coincidence Sid, the first person i was going to contact was Rich at at Cruise RO. I will contact him and then I hope to meet him in person at the Seattle Boat Show in January.
...Oliver, thanks for the heads up. I had thought the most convenient location would be in the forward crew cabin in the starboard bow using the intake thru-hull from the "fifth" head. I was just not sure the intake would be deep enough although it should be fine at anchor or flat seas.
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Old 14-11-2014, 21:53   #5
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Re: Watermaker on a Leopard 46

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sid at SailAway View Post
Give Rich a call here...Cruise RO Water & Power: Watermakers for Boats & Yachts. He'll answer all your questions. You'll walk away educated about watermakers, plus he's a super nice guy that really cares about his customers...
+1

Nice vessel
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Old 15-11-2014, 02:51   #6
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Re: Watermaker on a Leopard 46

Are you looking for 12v, 110/220v AC or engine driven? If 12 volt, I would highly recommend Spectra ahead of the other options. If A/C there seem to be a number of good choices, but I don't have personal experience. Engine driven and you are probably putting a system together yourself.

Mark.
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Old 15-11-2014, 03:14   #7
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Re: Watermaker on a Leopard 46

Must agree on the comment about SPECTRA for 12v systems .. been cruising full time and use our spectra to make PLENTY of water ... we do large load washing machines every 2nd day, wash Impi down every 3rd day at least and shower regularly. The folks at Spectra are also super great people and never quibble to assist and replace if they feel there is an issue that should not be there! We are eternally grateful for our choice in Spectra ... we do not have the same issues many sailors complain of. And the newport 400 MK11 has a terrific self maintenance system .. even when the boat is on the hard for months ... no need to 'store with chemicals' (pickle) ... must fit the Z-membrane technology ... it has saved us huge hassels when putting the boat on the hard to attend weddings and so forth!
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Old 15-11-2014, 10:37   #8
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Re: Watermaker on a Leopard 46

I have a 220 volt Sea Recovery that makes 17 gal/hr. This was on the boat when I bought it and the Sea Recovery has been a good unit. However, I hate having to run a generator to only make 17 gal per hour, less flushing water a the of the cycle.

I do a lot of cruising with the boat, most of at anchor rather than in slips.

If starting from scratch would look at two alternatives.

1. A high volume watermaker that needed a generator to run it. I have increased my current one to 40 gal/hr so at least i don't have to run the generator as long (solar covers all my electrical needs).

2. Get a 12 volt low output unit. On most days am throwing away electrical power from the solar panels. With a 12 volt system I could use the extra power to make water. The Spectra units that I am aware of make 7 gph with one pump using around 7-8 amp hours of juice. At almost 1 gal per amp hour it is by far the most efficient that I have seen. You can add a second pump and increase it to 14 gph.

Even 7 gph for 2-3 hours a day would generate more than enough water for most cruisers. At 14 gph for 2-3 hours I would be in heaven. Another advantage of a 12 volt system is that you get "free" water when powering so just moving anchorages every 2-3 days would keep you in good shape.

My 2 cents worth. Am sure you will get a lot of good input from the site to wade through. Have fun.

Bill
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Old 15-11-2014, 10:55   #9
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Re: Watermaker on a Leopard 46

Whatever RO unit you decide on, if you put the water maker in the starboard forward crew cabin, do not put the water intake scoop/thru-hull fitting anywhere near the bows - make sure it is installed by the keel or aft of the keel or you will suck air into the system and could damage the HP pump. If you get a Spectra with Z-Brain, make sure you have an independent power supply off the battries, with its own independent breaker - it must have power 27/7 to ensure its correct working.
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Old 16-11-2014, 14:44   #10
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Re: Watermaker on a Leopard 46

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Originally Posted by Capt. Aubrey View Post
We have recently purchased a 2008 Leopard 46 for long-term cruising. I would like to install a water-maker myself. Any suggestions on installation and model would be greatly appreciated.
Only choose an energy-saving machine (as in Spectra or Sea Recovery) if you will run it off 12 volts. If you will run it off a genset then there is no reason to save energy at the watermaker, which is very expensive (initial cost, expensive proprietary maintenance parts and black-box technology). After all, in most cases when you run a genset with an energy-saving watermaker you need to waste some electricity (as in heating water) just to save the genset engine from sooting up because of underload.

If you do follow the energy-saving route consider carefully Spectra vs Sea Recovery, at least until Sea Recovery solves the engineering issues they have (ie 5/8" hoses connected to 1/2" barbs, prefilter housings that are subject to 600 psi but not rated for that, over- and under-pressure switches that are not located where the manual says and that do not trip the system when the ETD gets stuck, unreliable depressurization solenoid valves, unnecesary 60-minute delay in Fresh Water Flus, and another half a dozen reasons why why hoses blow up in their systems). I am happy to deal with black box technology when the owners of the black box seem to understand their stuff and assume responsibility. IMHO SR is not there yet.

If you buy a Sea Recovery unit anyway:

a) Buy it from Fixx and his team in France. They are the one SR dealer that will help you out when you are in the middle of the ocean, the damn thing breaks again and you find one more thing that does not match the drawings.

b) Make sure you learn how to "unlock the ETD" before you leave. Also make sure the ETD is installed in such a way that you can easily unlock the ETD.

c) Make sure you understand if your model requires an optional kit for pickling or winterizing (as in the UW 600) and install it before you need it.

If you follow the traditional (not energy saving) route consider one CF regular who gives very good support for DIYers and also consider EchoTec in Trinidad.

Cheers

Charlie
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