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Old 09-09-2019, 09:45   #16
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

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Originally Posted by SoItGoes View Post
We've been using our Seawater Pro (with the Karcher pump) twice a week for almost two years now and we have had no problems. The system works just like it's supposed to pumping twenty gallons an hour.
So that Karcher pump is holding out.
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Old 09-09-2019, 10:20   #17
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

Good info here on going DIY cheap. The less water you need per day, the less the system will cost.


https://www.baylinerownersclub.org/f...ystery-and-the
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Old 09-09-2019, 14:38   #18
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

Personally I feel that WM pricing is a combination of "value adding" by packaging and fear mongering to those that feel the units are some super complex thing and/or who prefer to buy for "better" components on the belief they will last so much longer than others to be worth while (or the fear again of "ifs")
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Old 09-09-2019, 14:57   #19
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
So that Karcher pump is holding out.


I was surprised to hear that too, Iíve not had good luck with them pumping drinking water as a pressure washer, I figured saltwater would do one in, but I assume they fresh water flush every time, so maybe that is why itís lived for two years?
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Old 09-09-2019, 14:58   #20
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
Personally I feel that WM pricing is a combination of "value adding" by packaging and fear mongering to those that feel the units are some super complex thing and/or who prefer to buy for "better" components on the belief they will last so much longer than others to be worth while (or the fear again of "ifs")
I agree. There is not too much learning involved to have a pretty good understanding of WMs. If you take some time to chase info, learn, chase parts etc you can save a lot of money and know how they work and fix them when they dont.

In this information age its never been easier. I think this is a pretty handy skill for a cruiser. Id say $2k in parts for a reasonable setup. Im into mine with a little change from $3k but I have got every feature I could think of.


But realistically most people I know arent this interested. This is as you say, why WM producers exist.
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Old 09-09-2019, 15:39   #21
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

I have a Little wonder watermaker, 160-200, It did wok perfectly before it got drowned,
But it had a 110 volt motor to drive the pressure pump, It also costs $1100-00 for a new one,
I have put in a dedicated thru hull for it, Intake, The above the waterline outlet under the boat was alleady there, Brine outlet, I have a tap in the cockpit for testing the water as the watermaker starts up,
Looking at build your own watermaker video's on line, Especially the Karcher set up,
A 12 volt motor, Car starter motor, Etc would suck too much power from the batterys,
A 240 volt karcher was just too big to fit in my boat,
So I ended up buying a 240 volt pressure washer, a small unit, 3200 PSI, $90-00,
A few new stainless fittings to adapt it to the water maker, They are quick fit clip on fittings, So I can remove it and use it elsewhere on the boat, or any where I need a pressure washer,
For that price, Its cheaper that just a pressure pump replacement, I will just chuck the pump if it fails and put a new one in,
I tried it all out yesterday and it works perfectly, Its on the hard, So I dont know yet what it will work like in seawater, ??????????
But I can regulate it to get 800 to 900 PSI on the gauges I already have,
I ran it out of a bucket of water as it self primes, And to prove it will suck up thru the thru hull fitting,
My 200 amh battery kept tripping out as it was way down on charge,
I have 500 Watts of solar going into the battery, But I think the battery is cactus as its not holding a full charge, Its like some thing is connected and draining the battery, But nothing is connected,
I have a 3000 watt invertor that I connected it too,
But Im not worried about that as I bought a 3.5 KVA petrol generator to run it any way, $390-00, Which fits neatly into my rear locker, It weighs 40 Kgs, Its also very quiet when its running,
Which I will set up this morning to see how and if the generator will run the 240 volt pressure pump, The Generator does run my big circular saw easily,
The generator also has a 12 volt battery charger as standard equiptment, along with two 240 volt outlets,
The pressure pump can still be used on the boat as a pressure washer to clean the boat,
I can buy a complete membrane pressure vessel for around $300-00 online, Then a pressure gauge and fittings for about $100-00 extra,
So build your own watermakers can be bought off the shelf and made up cheaply,
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Old 09-09-2019, 16:13   #22
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

Mr. B, I am looking to do a similar set on my boat when I get it built. It's going to be based on a $100US Wen pressure washer.
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Old 09-09-2019, 16:30   #23
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
Personally I feel that WM pricing is a combination of "value adding" by packaging and fear mongering to those that feel the units are some super complex thing and/or who prefer to buy for "better" components on the belief they will last so much longer than others to be worth while (or the fear again of "ifs")
There's a fair amount of added cost for warranty too.
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Old 09-09-2019, 17:07   #24
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

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Originally Posted by senormechanico View Post
Sometimes, just looking at the post count and time on CF will give you a clue to the veracity of the information provided.

OMG! I see what you mean.. (I'll bite my tongue!)
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Old 09-09-2019, 17:20   #25
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

Thanks everyone for your comments. There's a lot to read and digest here but I have just arisen so I'll respond later in the day. Just one point though.

Q Xopa
  • You say you have stacks of solar panels so power is not a problem for you.
  • I note you dispose of brine down your galley sink so my idea of disposing through the cockpit drain does not appear to be silly.
  • I spent a whole lot of time building a beautifully strong hull and I am therefore loathe to installing even more through hull fittings. I note you are installing a compost toilet but I have installed a normal saltwater flush toilet. Is there any reason why I can't pipe water from the toilet through hull fitting to the desalinator? (Maybe 6 meters)?
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Old 09-09-2019, 17:41   #26
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

We have a Spectra Ventura 150 so I can't comment on the unit you are interested in. However, I did learn something the hard way after installing a dedicated thru-hull for the watermaker and I hope that you can avoid this mistake.

We used the unit for about 2 years sharing a thru-hull and Spectra is quite clear that their watermakers should have a dedicated thu-hull. So we installed a dedicated thru-hull when the boat was out of the water for bottom paint and a couple of other things. I was not there when the work was done, nor did I do any reading regarding placement of the thru-hull. Bad idea all around.

Spectra, and presumably other manufacturers recommend placing the thru-hull as close to the boat's centre line as possible. This makes sense - there should be no interruptions in the flow of intake water. Our fresh-water cooled diesel relies on a steady stream of sea water that is brought in using a thru-hull right on the centre line. But because I did not read Spectra's instructions I did not specify the placement and the thru-hull was placed just inboard of the head intake on the starboard side. This is not a problem in itself but as it turns out, the thru-hull is too far outboard when on a starboard tack in any kind of ruffled sea. So unless we are in an anchorage we can only make water on a port tack if there are waves/swell exceeding about 1m. This is a pain because under these circumstances (i.e. underway on a starboard tack, waves more than a meter) we need to essentially stop the boat while making water. Otherwise the unit sucks in air and stops making water. Rolling about in these conditions is unpleasant so going in the wrong direction is the best alternative in order to keep the thru-hull in the water.

So this is just a heads up to avoid this mistake. sigh.....
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Old 09-09-2019, 18:35   #27
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

Marathon1150

Regarding the placement of the desalinator input through hull that is something I'll have to look at very, very carefully otherwise I may well have the same problem as you.

Thanks for that

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Old 09-09-2019, 19:31   #28
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

Keep your thru hull well away from the Dunnys exit point too,
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Old 09-09-2019, 20:57   #29
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Re: Watermakers (desalinators)

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Keep your thru hull well away from the Dunnys exit point too,
After reading Marathon1150's comment I think I may have to install a dedicated through hull in which case I'll put it on the other side of the keel

Thanks

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