H2O filtration in the 21st century?

5:22 p.m. on January 19, 2014 (EST)
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howdy all.

per the subject line, what's the going rig these days?

(per 10 years ago I was using a lethal combo of god's goodwill & bleach;

heavy emphasis on the former and I got lucky, but then again, young & foolish,

need I say more)?

now older & wiser...

I'm planning a LT hike for summer...

what to tote?

(I'm a student-- i.e. budget to some degree, yes, it counts).

many thanks! :)

522

10:57 p.m. on January 19, 2014 (EST)
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Hard to pass up the sawyer squeeze or sawyer mini. IMO its the best on the market currently and the price is darn good too. Very easy to use, reliable, durable, and easy to clean/backflush.

12:53 a.m. on January 20, 2014 (EST)
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I just got the Sawyer Mini...at approx. $20.00 and 2oz. (dry) it is hard to beat and stupid-simple to use (you can be illiterate and use it properly)...since I've only had my Mini a couple of weeks I cannot personally testify to its performance...but I have heard nothing but good things about it from others...and I have used the larger Sawyer Point-Zero-Two filter for a couple of years now and I absolutely love it...I have high expectations!

An extremely light-weight option (also a better option for less trustworthy water sources) is Aquamira (though it is a little more error prone in that it requires the user to be both literate and capable of following simple directions). As it comes Aquamira only weighs 3 oz. and can purify approx. 30 gallons of water...but if you buy this: http://www.dollartree.com/health-beauty/oral-care/Icy-Breeze-Instant-Fresh-Breath-Drops/591c601c601p320348/index.pro at the Dollar Tree for 1.00 you can repackage approx. 10 Liters worth into two of the bottles for a system that weighs .4oz. and fits into a small ziplock bag the size of a fig Newton which you can carry in a pocket for convenience without ever realizing it is there. This specs on this system includes not only the use of two bottles to store solutions A and B...but also a third bottle (empty) to pre-mix a day's worth (1/2 day's worth in summer) of solution to speed things up at the water source...(for more details about repackaging Aquamira see Stick's blog: http://sticksblog.com/2011/08/18/smart-light-cheap/).

Better still...using both together the Sawyer "Mini" and Aquamira system you would have a redundant water purification-filtration system capable of filtering out debris and large bacteria...as well as purifying water when deemed necessary for under 2.5 oz. (weight doesn't include water storage).

10:43 a.m. on January 20, 2014 (EST)
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thanks.

my primary concern (and really my only concern) is bracing for giardia.

Vermont= bogs, beavers, moose. need I say more?

somewhere along the line I thought I heard about a UV- efficient,

battery-operated deal that "scans" your water & kills pathogens in the doing  so?

does this ring a bell with anyone out there?

thanks again.

11:36 a.m. on January 20, 2014 (EST)
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287 forum posts

I just picked up a mini as well.  I haven't used it much yet but it seems simple and effective so far for the few times I've used it.  The one thing that concerns me about using it is the fact that you have to wipe off the bag well after dipping it in the source.  Contamination dripping down from outside the bag is more of a concern than what it is using a pump type system.  With the pump system you can keep the intake and the outlet line well apart from each other which minimizes the probability of contamination.  

12:22 p.m. on January 20, 2014 (EST)
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192 forum posts

522,

On a budget? A 20 dollar Coghlans filter will work fine for Giardia. Or buy just the filter for eleven bucks and rig up a "Hikers Friend" like I did. That way you simply haul a gallon or two of water to camp, hang it up and use as needed.

The Sawyer units are not much more coin, filter a heck of allot more gun out and are pretty popular these days.

Got lots of coin? The SteriPEN is the latest in water purification.

It doesn't filter anything out at all, instead it kills the bugs with ultraviolet light.

http://www.steripen.com/

They run on a rechargeable battery, and they also sell a little solar charger for it. It is quite an impressive little unit if you can afford one.

 

1:30 p.m. on January 20, 2014 (EST)
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131 forum posts

thanks.

my primary concern (and really my only concern) is bracing for giardia.

Vermont= bogs, beavers, moose. need I say more?

somewhere along the line I thought I heard about a UV- efficient,

battery-operated deal that "scans" your water & kills pathogens in the doing  so?

does this ring a bell with anyone out there?

thanks again.

 

And if your battery dies?

The main concern that I have with the UV treatments are that they don't filter the water. If the water is full of crap, the UV may sterilize that crap, but you are still drinking the crap, unless you also filter it.

Just sayin. . .

I asked about all this stuff a while back and almost everyone seems to agree: SAWYER

2:15 p.m. on January 20, 2014 (EST)
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192 forum posts

Hehe, So? If it is dead, it is just extra protein!

Dead batteries are a concern of course, but you make sure it is charged and you should be fine for most trips. Thru-hikers might have trouble with it.

Of course if you break the bulb....

 The ultraviolet units have one real advantage over every other unit on the market -

They kill viruses. Nothing else can touch those micro-buggers except chemical treatment.

 

7:28 p.m. on January 20, 2014 (EST)
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I have a steripen as well and primarily use it in winter when a regular filter runs the risk of freezing and being damaged. I have had the steripen about 3 years now i think and I just now replaced my batteries. I always carried a spare set with me just in case. That set of batteries lasted for probably 75 liters. You can always just boil it if it fails.

I really like the steripen. I prefilter the water with a bandana to get all of the floaties out. If you use a chemical treatment your still drinking all the other stuff too. Its no big deal, just a psychological thing.

My two favorite water treatment methods of all time? Sawyer squeeze filter, and the steripen. I have a steripen adventurer that uses cr123 batteries.

5:28 a.m. on January 21, 2014 (EST)
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110 forum posts

extremely helpful, all.

MANY thanks! :)

March 29, 2020
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