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I just assembled my own. Brought a couple of cartridge holders and joined them with a flexible hose each end. One end can either conenct straight to a tap or the threaded connection on the bottom of most water containers... that way it can gravity feed.

I have a selection of carbon and sediment cartridges that I can replace/clean and it's portable. Unfortunately I have been using in the house for a while now so if there's a big earthquake then my fresh water plans are buggerd :D:
 

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The Berky is the 'gold standard' of gravity filters, if you can afford one Frugal's is a great place to get it. Stainless steel isn't cheap, and their products are top notch.

There are other options that are a lot cheaper; new companies with similar specs, DIY containers using aftermarket replacement filters, boiling, bleach, UV, honestly there are a lot of ways to make safe water, my parents got suckered into a expensive water distiller in the 80's, it does work for water, might even work for other 'liquids'.... I might have to check it out.

Honestly, safe water is a matter of circumstance and balance, you can eliminate organic contaminants with filters, uv, or bleach. Distillation removes almost everything but leaves the water naked of essential minerals and it tastes wrong to my palate. I add a pinch of sea salt to distilled water and agitate it by pouring it between two containers 10 times or so.

Pure water is two hydrogen molecules combined with one oxygen molecule, but most of us really wouldn't recognize it from what we're used to drinking and even if we were, our bodies wouldn't be satisfied without the other trace minerals in a long term situation.

Ocean salt water isn't as bad as many survival texts state, from what I've read, mixed 1/7 to 1/9 with distilled water it's beneficial adding back in the lost minerals. I've mixed it this way and it tastes ok'ish, I haven't preformed a chemical analysis.

So.. How do I prepare? I use 1 gallon milk jugs with 8-10 drops of bleach replaced every year, I store about 20 gallons this way; it depends on the space on the shelf. I rotate a gallon of bleach with our laundry every year, it's a backup for about 1000 gallons, give or take. I can always boil water and I have a Katadyn water filter for short term needs.

Water off your roof through the downspouts is very viable if there hasn't been a chemical or nuclear event, it's easy to collect and requires very little treatment. Boiling or bleach is easily enough.

When it comes to boiling water the stated goal is to boil the water at 212 degrees, but actually the goal is pasteurization and not boiling. The idea is to hit 162 degrees for 20 seconds, this is all that is required to kill known bacterial bad guys.

Just a few notes from the field..
Nom
 

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The Berkey is great but get the filters and make your own if you can't afford one. I did that for a few years. Then I bought one at a sale where some fool had paniced after 9/11 and bought a tone of survival stuff, then put it up for sale a few years later after the panic had worn off.

blt
 

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Molōn Labe!
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The Berkey's are considered the best overall gravity fed filters. There are other systems which might be considered superior, but cost prohibitive and extremely space intensive in comparison. Berkey's just have the right mix of the best positives with the least negatives. I highly recommend the stainless steel over the Berkey Light (plastic). Take your choice of capacity. Start with 2 black filters if cost is too much, and later upgrade to 4 black filters. Don't get the ceramic filters...

I would also recommend getting the optional bottom filters, which filter out flouride, chlorine, and arsenic, amongst other bad stuff. They will run you an extra $65. You can also get the same filter media in a shower outlet filter to cut out the same bad stuff.

How much is clean water worth to you?
 

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Little Big Man
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SIgh, water filter is at the top of my list but I keep trying to research and can't ever find what I'm wanting...

I'm not so concerned about microbes, as Nom said above, bleach and boiling work, what I want is to filter any possible toxic chemicals... I'm setting up a rain water collection barrel but and am concerned of pollutants in the air. So I'm looking I guess for charcoal filters, possibly in tandem with ceramic to extend their life...

So is a berky still the way to go? just make sure I get the bottom filters or the black filters? I don't really care how big or portable it is, i just want something that will be able to provide 1000's of gallons of drinking water :(
 

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Doomsayer
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SIgh, water filter is at the top of my list but I keep trying to research and can't ever find what I'm wanting...

I'm not so concerned about microbes, as Nom said above, bleach and boiling work, what I want is to filter any possible toxic chemicals... I'm setting up a rain water collection barrel but and am concerned of pollutants in the air. So I'm looking I guess for charcoal filters, possibly in tandem with ceramic to extend their life...

So is a berky still the way to go? just make sure I get the bottom filters or the black filters? I don't really care how big or portable it is, i just want something that will be able to provide 1000's of gallons of drinking water :(
Big Berky. 8 "Super Sterasyl" ceramic filters. 30 gallons per day. :thumb:
 

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And, if so, what is the most cost effective reliable place to buy one?
The Berkey has been used for a long time by missionaries, and it really is the gold standard. Furthermore, it doesn't look bad sitting on your counter if you want to filter your tap water for everyday use. I love mine. You can actually use it and not just store it for "what if" so it's one of your better investments, imo.
 

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Molōn Labe!
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So is a berky still the way to go? just make sure I get the bottom filters or the black filters? I don't really care how big or portable it is, i just want something that will be able to provide 1000's of gallons of drinking water :(
Yes, the Berkey is still the way to go.

For clarification, there are 3 types of filters for the Berkey. The top half uses either the BLACK filters or the white ceramic filters. The black are superior and cost a bit more. The white ceramic are 'acceptable'. The third type is a totally different filter which sits in the lower portion of the Berkey and will screw onto the threading of the top filter. This type is the anti-flouride filter. They run about $65 for a pair. They are not mandatory, but are optional. Personally, removal of flouride, arsenic, and chlorine are mandatory for me, so I have them installed. A shower filter with the same material is also sold separately.

You can purchase a Berkey with 2 top filters and later install 2 more for 4 total if you need to save a few dollars. The only difference this will make is a slower time to filter all the water with half the filter media capacity and a "shorter" lifespan of the filters because there are only two of them.

If your concerns are greater than the capability of a single or dual stage filtration system, then you might need to examine different or additional filtration techniques. For example, dehumidifiers pull moisture from the air and condense it into water. These will work for you but require electricity and can get mold growth fairly easily if not maintained regularly. You can also look into those vortex generators and some additives that counteract specific toxins if you have high concentrations of them.
 

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From what I've been able to dig up, the ceramic filters have been around for a century or so, and can last up to twice as long as the black filters. Also, the ceramic filters are generally the ones used by overseas missionaires and other groups that are working in true 3rd world hell-holes, where they may be filtering very muddy water. The black filters supposedly filter a little more stuff due to smaller pores, but are less tolerant of very dirty water.
I got mine from this operation, it was $250 delivered with 2 black filters, which seems the standard deal.They were nice and informative,and shipped quick, I recommend them.
http://www.berkeywaterfilterstore.com/berkey-light.php
I later ordered a couple extra ceramic filters from these guys,(free shipping) they were also,very nice and informative, and I recommend them,too.
http://www.jamesfilter.com/
 
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