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We’re on a quest to pick out a watermaker for our new cruising boat, a Fountaine Pajot Helia 44 we are picking up from the factory in October 2014.
I first mentioned Cruise RO Watermakers back in March after we got back from the Miami Boat Show. Amy and I both liked the fact that the watermakers are high output models, use non-proprietary parts and are more straightforward and simple than other watermakers. My hope is that this means they’re less likely to break, or it will be easier to fix! The one downside to these watermakers is that they take a lot of power. Cruise RO suggests a portable Honda generator to power the watermaker. However, our onboard diesel generator is quite large, and we will use it on a fairly regular basis for air conditioning or to charge up our batteries, we will be able to make water at the same time.
It took a little while after Miami for us to make up our minds, but we were fortunate in that Rich, one of the owners of Cruise RO and lured by the promise of great Texas BBQ, came to the Southwest International Boat Show this year so we were able to meet up with him at the show, get one more demonstration of the unit, and place our order for a 30 gallon/hour model. The 30 GPH model will allow us to have a very plentiful supply of fresh water, which means we don’t have to constantly limit ourselves to “Navy Showers“, will have lots of fresh drinking water, and will be able to use freshwater washdowns on the boat, which will go a long way to keeping her clean and beautiful.
The watermaker came in 5 large boxes, and we are glad to have a large storage container where we can keep boat items for now. The first (and heaviest!) box housed the high-pressure pump and motor assembly. We’re setting the boat up with a US-based power system, so we chose to go for the 115 VAC/60hz pump motor.
The next big box had the RO Pressure Vessel Assembly. This is where the magic happens. Two Dow membranes are used to hit the 30 gallon-per-hour water making capacity. If something happens to one of the membranes, we can re-plumb the system and use the other to still make 20 GPH. Not bad…
The third box contained the bulk of the whole system. This includes the 12V Self Priming Boost Pump, Pre-filter Assembly with 20- and 5-micron Prefilters, and the Valve and Cleaning Assembly. In addition, there were also instructions, tubing, and connector fittings.
The fourth box contained the optional Remote Panel that includes a flow meter, pressure gauge, selector valve, and switches for both pumps. This will be very helpful in providing smooth operation of the system, plus verification that the system is working properly. The CruiseRO team wrapped the panel in the box, so I’ve included a picture from the Cruise RO website.
The last box includes what Cruise RO deems the “Cruising Consumable Kit“. This kit will provide us with a year’s supply of filters, pickling reagent, and high-pressure pump crank case oil.
I was very impressed and pleased with how securely everything was packed and shipped. There was no damage to anything and I’ll just re-tape the boxes to have them ready to take to Florida. Both Amy and I are quite happy with our experience with Cruise RO thus far. We have heard from other cruisers about their fantastic installation/after installation support. Overall, we’re comfortable about this watermaker long term. Now if only our boat would get out of the factory so we could start installing all this fun stuff…
- AquaPro Water Quality Tester
- Activated Carbon Filter Elements
- 6-20 micron and 6-5 micron pleated pre-filter elements
- Non-detergent high pressure pump crank case oil
- Sodium Metabisulfite pickling reagent