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Old 07-10-2015, 09:56 AM   #1
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our new watermaker

No photos yet but I took Larry's recommendation and contacted Cruise RO about a replacement watermaker for our Katadyne 160 GPD unit.

Not a darn thing wrong with the Katadyne. It does it's job at 7 GPH just fine.

It's being replaced with this:

40 GPH Boat Watermaker | Cruise RO Water & Power

40 gallon per hour.

The reason is simple. As we spend more time at sea we are finding that although the Katadyne at 7 GPH can keep up, you have to run the thing pretty much all day to do it.

Although it's a DC unit it is by no means quiet. The single piston pump runs and you can hear it thump, thump, thump all day long.

With the 40 GPH unit we will be able to also do our laundry at sea, and do things we don't do now like wash sea water off of the windows (which obstructs our views when it dries). We will also be shutting down our salt water wash down system.

I was especially impressed when last night at 8:00 pm the owner of the company responded to my questions via Email. How can you beat that kind of customer service?
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Old 07-10-2015, 10:07 AM   #2
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Aah Kevin. You starting trouble again! It's not a Watermaker, the water is already there, it's a water converter or salt remover or....
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Old 07-10-2015, 10:32 AM   #3
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Kevin, Smart man. We our watermaker so much, we've been thinking about putting a second one in for redundancy. You won't be sorry.
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Old 07-10-2015, 12:19 PM   #4
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Aah Kevin. You starting trouble again! It's not a Watermaker, the water is already there, it's a water converter or salt remover or....
Uh Oh.
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Old 07-10-2015, 12:24 PM   #5
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Kevin, Smart man. We our watermaker so much, we've been thinking about putting a second one in for redundancy. You won't be sorry.
I have found that having an ublimited supply of water can be a good thing.

Right now for example I start doing the laundry when I hit the dock and the washing machine runs full time for a day or two after that.

Now I'll be able to wash clothes and most important towels at sea. It may not seem like a big thing, but it's the little things that add up to big comfort.

Also eliminating the salt water wash down will mean a cleaner boat in general. Right now we salt water washdown the decks constantly while fishing, trying to keep the blood and fish slime cleaned up. This will allow us to keep the cockpit cleaner, reducing my workload at the dock, and the stuff getting tracked into the salon.
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Old 07-10-2015, 12:49 PM   #6
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Yep. Also where we cruise they charge upwards of $.50 a gallon. We run our 700GPD at 33-35 GPH and run it all day everyday when in a marina. On the hook we'll usually shut one HVAC down then crank it up. And let it run most of the day. We use water like we do at home. Which is our goal when we go boating. We like to have all the amenities of home, on the water.
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Old 07-10-2015, 01:53 PM   #7
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We are looking at the FCI watermaker. That makes about 40 gals an hour. Our thinking is that the two of us will probably use about a 100 gallons a day. After having many motor homes and doing a lot of dry camping, the only thing holding us back was the grey water storage. Storage of gray water is not an issue on the boat, (yet) so we want to be able to enjoy life as we would on shore.
Kevin, if you don't mind, what was the cost to put the new watermaker in, assuming you didn't do it yourself? We are getting quotes for our installation, and it looks as though we will have it done up in Seattle as not to many yards here in Portland are capable of the installation.
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Old 07-10-2015, 02:01 PM   #8
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We are looking at the FCI watermaker. That makes about 40 gals an hour. Our thinking is that the two of us will probably use about a 100 gallons a day. After having many motor homes and doing a lot of dry camping, the only thing holding us back was the grey water storage. Storage of gray water is not an issue on the boat, (yet) so we want to be able to enjoy life as we would on shore.
Kevin, if you don't mind, what was the cost to put the new watermaker in, assuming you didn't do it yourself? We are getting quotes for our installation, and it looks as though we will have it done up in Seattle as not to many yards here in Portland are capable of the installation.

Don't get an FCI, proprietary parts and wayyyy to complicated. Our 700GPD with auto flush and auto TDS diverted was 10k installed.
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Old 07-10-2015, 02:06 PM   #9
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Oliver has a great point.

One of the reasons i chose this unit over others is that it has zero propritary parts.

As to time to install I'll let you know the actual time but I would estimate that a regular ship yard will charge you for around two days labor at your prevaling labor rates. Thats if they do not need to move anything.
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Old 07-10-2015, 02:49 PM   #10
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Oliver has a great point.



One of the reasons i chose this unit over others is that it has zero propritary parts.



As to time to install I'll let you know the actual time but I would estimate that a regular ship yard will charge you for around two days labor at your prevaling labor rates. Thats if they do not need to move anything.

Yep, also was big factor when we purchased ours.

I'd recommend the auto freshwater flush option. It's a great feature and will extend the life of the membranes and also it never exposes your comments to that acidic pickling solution.
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Old 07-10-2015, 02:49 PM   #11
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Kevin, your still keeping you're old unit right? Then you'll have a nice redundant system.
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Old 07-10-2015, 02:57 PM   #12
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What does the fresh water flush kit do? Does it replace the three way valve?

I'll be selling the Katadyn. I just don't have the room for both without re-arranging.

What I will probably do is spare up with a pump kit and a spare membrane set. The motor is probably the most reliable part and I already have a spare boost pump I keep aboard.
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Old 07-10-2015, 03:02 PM   #13
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What does the fresh water flush kit do? Does it replace the three way valve?

I'll be selling the Katadyn. I just don't have the room for both without re-arranging.

What I will probably do is spare up with a pump kit and a spare membrane set. The motor is probably the most reliable part and I already have a spare boost pump I keep aboard.

It flushes it every week from the boats water system. Usually has a charcoal filter so chlorine won't get in the membranes. Sounds like your setup for spares.
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Old 07-10-2015, 03:12 PM   #14
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Don't get an FCI, proprietary parts and wayyyy to complicated. Our 700GPD with auto flush and auto TDS diverted was 10k installed.
Then again, I've got a FCI unit on this boat. It's one of their basic Aquamiser units. No fancy electronic controls. Which is the way I like it. They don't seem to have much of any proprietary parts other than the circuit board, as do most other brands as well.

We bought it low hours used and after replacing the circuit board it's been trouble free.

I used almost every brand of water maker out there at one time or another. And I've found them all to be pretty trouble free and reliable if you stick to the basic units without all the electronic bells and whistles.
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Old 07-10-2015, 06:02 PM   #15
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As Capt Bill indicated, the vast majority of issues we hear about with watermakers aren't the equipment itself, but the electronic controls and circuit boards. Perhaps because we've never had to limit water usage, but to us it really sounds like it would adversely impact the pleasure of long range cruising. We have Sea Recovery.
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Old 07-10-2015, 08:05 PM   #16
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The unit I bought has no circuit boards, no electronic anything.

I might build a relay based control panel for it, like the one they sell, but we'll just have to see.

I will say that not having any propritary parts is nice. Very nice!
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Old 07-10-2015, 09:12 PM   #17
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We have had a Village Marine "No Frills" for the last 7 years and had an Aquamarine for 9 years previously. Both are/were your basic AC water makers (18-28 GPH) with no PC boards or automated controls. No automatic filter rinses, TDS monitors, switching, etc. We never had a component failure where we couldn't make water. IMHO kiss is a good thing with water makers and it sure reduces costs/headaches.
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Old 07-11-2015, 07:18 AM   #18
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We have had a Village Marine "No Frills" for the last 7 years and had an Aquamarine for 9 years previously. Both are/were your basic AC water makers (18-28 GPH) with no PC boards or automated controls. No automatic filter rinses, TDS monitors, switching, etc. We never had a component failure where we couldn't make water. IMHO kiss is a good thing with water makers and it sure reduces costs/headaches.
We have all the bells and whistles on our water maker. One problem after another with these add ons. Fortunately we are able to use the manual option which bypasses the bells and whistles.
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Old 07-11-2015, 10:09 AM   #19
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I have thought of what it would take to automate a watermaker to a "one button" system and it could be done, but it would get complicated.

One of the most complicated circuits would be the pressure adjustment. You would either need a linear valve or a a motor you could control its position with a voltage We used to call them "stepper motors" I believe.

The simple control panel is easy for a human to run. The only limitation is that you need to run several water lines to it.
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Old 07-11-2015, 11:17 AM   #20
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I have thought of what it would take to automate a watermaker to a "one button" system and it could be done, but it would get complicated.
This is the closest to your "One Button" water maker that I've ever seen.


FCI Watermakers ? Max-Q ? Marine & Industrial Watermaker
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