Water, water everywhere…

At an ungodly cost in funds and effort, I have successfully installed a piece of equipment that allows us to create a severely limited supply of the life giving substance most people take for granted.  Fresh water.

Very few upgrades have been discussed, hashed out, re-hashed, and researched as much as the installation of the watermaker.  On a small boat like ours there are two major styles, each with an extensive list of pro’s and cons.  They boil down to high output/high electricity output, and low output/low electricity draw.

The high output model requires a generator to be running while its on.  I don’t like them.  They’re heavy and loud and require gasoline.  If the zombie apocalypse hits and we can’t get gas we have no water.  The low output makes an annoying buzzing sound but in the cockpit with the door shut I can’t hear it.  Downstairs its irritating but I can live with it.  It can run off the solar panels.  Suck it zombie’s, we went low output.

Like many big ticket items, there are many models and manufacturers.  After many hours of internet research we went with the Spectra brand 200T model.  It draws 10amps DC and puts out 8 gallons per hour.

In the interest of saving some cash and desire to have intimate knowledge of the thing when I breaks, I decided an owner install was the way to go.  The dealer came out to deliver the beast and spent a couple hours with me laying out where all the hoses and components would go.

With a somewhat nauseous thought that I was in over my head, I put on a brave smile, thanked him for his time and was on my own.

No need for the gory details, but about 60 hours, 3 minor lacerations, a multitude of bruises, enough cursing to make captain Jack Sparrow blush, and 4 trips to the hardware store later the system is installed and functioning!  Yay!

View from the companionway right after the spectra dealer left.

If this was art I would title it “The moment after cutting into perfectly functioning plumbing and hoping the new fittings don’t leak”

Ah the joys of running electrical in a boat. Since the furniture is built in, it has to be completely dismantled to get access behind.

This is a fun game. How many wires can we fit through the hole? Turns out the answer is ONE MORE!! Yay!

After running this wire I’m adding professional contortionist to my resume.

Beautiful pristine teak before I take the jigsaw to it.

Cut holes with drill because jig saw isn’t powerful enough to cut through solid teak.

Connect the dots with the jig saw.

And now we hope the panel fits.

Sweet baby jesus yes!

The mystery machine fitted into position. This is where the magic happens, and we hope never breaks because its a huge black box.

Primary pump goes in first.

Followed by the control valve and charcoal filter. No so mysterious, but still expensive to fix if it craps out.

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