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Founder
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Discussion Starter #1
What is a good water filter upgrade from the katadyn hiker?

Was out on a hiking trip today doing some videos and taking pictures for reviews. Stopped for lunch next to a creek. Got out my katadyn hiker and was filtering water from a creek. I thought to myself, there must be something faster?

I just want a filter, something to get rid of your basic stuff.

I usually drink straight from the creek, but we got some rain recently and there was a lot of small debris in the water.

Currently looking at the MSR filters. I have always used Katadyn but am open to something else. I just want to try something new.
 

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MSR Guardian. Not cheap, but pumps water like a fun slide at a water park. ~$350; 2.5 liters per minute; .02 micron filter removes viruses; self-cleaning; 10k liters per cartridge. A few folks have reported leaks or clogs. This thing is up in the same cost/performance territory as the classic gold standard Katadyn Pocket Filter. But lighter in weight, smaller pores, & faster pumping of water volume.

http://guardianpurifier.com/

On deep discount from one of your vendors here (~$250):
http://www.safecastle.com/guardian-purifier-pump.aspx

I have not yet pulled the trigger, but am damn close. Don't really need another filter, but I think this would be my next purchase.
 

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Swirl Herder
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What about trying a gravity type filter.

Katadyn makes some gravity filters that require no pumping and will filter 2 litres of water per minute.

The smallest in the range uses a 6 litre bag:

https://www.katadyn.com/us/us/428-8019160-katadyn-gravity-camp-6l_usa

Gravity filters can be used to filter into an open-topped container or to feed directly via the tube into a water bladder or can be used to carry water that is used directly from the hose.

When folded they are very compact and the whole system weighs only 10 oz.

You can hang them up at your camp and use them as an on-demand filtered water supply tank. That is pretty handy when there is a bit of distance between your camp and the nearest water source.

No pumping required.

They also make black bag versions (from their military products range) if the blue bag is too visible for your purposes.

Katadyn even makes a shower attachment for the bag that converts the unit to a bush shower.
 

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Old Fart
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I use the platypus gravity works system that uses 4l clean and dirty bags. When the filter ever goes ill swap it for sawyer mini and use it like always.

 

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I have several and not one of them is suited for all applications. If I am base camping, backpacking, climbing or light trekking... I use filter(s) to fit those applications. If you just need one. A filter that you can use as a gravity feed and pump system. My MSR hyperflow does both. For general use I love my MSR Miniworks EX, after that I like the katadyn hike pro. Just got the MSR trail shot..(trekking) and its nice for just one person. If you can afford it, don't rely on just one system. I have been "testing gear for years now, and I don't have it all figured out yet....:)
 

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Keep It Simple, Stupid
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If you're looking for speed and simplicity, you can attach an inline filter to your water bottle or bladder. Then you just fill your reservoir (either a bottle or a bladder) with dirty water, and you filter it as you drink.

I've seen many people do this with a Sawyer Mini and a quick detach Camelbak, and I believe both Sawyer and Lifestraw make a bottle with a built in filter.
 

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Premium Member
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Sawyer mini. Use it like a straw, use bags to squeeze water through it, put it in a gravity feed system, use it inline in a water bladder, ...

Small, light, inexpensive, filters any biological contaminate we are concerned about in N.A.

To meet your 'fast' requirement consider using it in a gravity feed system (not really fast, but doesn't require _you_ to do all the work), or in-line with a bladder if you're on the move (note, the bladder then becomes a 'dirty' bag).


my $300 pocket pro seldom leaves storage since I got my $25 sawyer.
 

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Viruses are a very low concern in CONUS and for recreational use, your filter doesn't necessarily need that protection. Post SHTF is another issue...

For the majority of our backpacking and other recreational activities, I prefer the Sawyer mini and the Platypus filtration system. The Sawyer can be used as a stray and makes it easier to filter directly into a hydration pack with a couple cut-off valve adapters added. Although it relies on a gray water container for gravity or pressure (i.e. their "squeeze" bags), you can still use it like a straw. The setup is lighter than the Platypus, but I still like the Platypus system for base-camp use.

Even with these filters, I pack along the two-part system Aqua Mira drops (in two small eye dropper bottles) as backup or a dozen of the chlorine dioxide tablets to deal with suspect water sources. We did a hike through an area that was hit with the norovirus; typically cause by poor hygiene and sanitation practices. We didn't take any chances and we treated our water after we filtered it if it wasn't used for cooking (boiled).

Since these types of filters use a capillary filtration system, it's important to backflush periodically and especially if your water is full of tannins or a lot of small detritus. Although not needed, we just made it a habit to backflush every night before hitting the hammock. Ideally, you should be able to go several days before needing to backflush if your water is relatively clear.

One key practice is that after a trip, we backflush with water treated with chlorine dioxide to keep anything from growing and just before we launch on a trip, we run some clean water through the filters. This helps expedite the filtration as you don't want to force water through dry capillaries so it's best they've been "hydrated" before hitting the trail.

ROCK6
 

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Sawyer here, too.

If you're concerned about viruses, they still sell the PointZeroTwo purifier (0.02 micron filter), which should cover most viruses. Looks like you can only buy it as part of a kit meant to attach to a bucket, and it's just into triple digits. But, option.
 
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