About this making water thing

Water rocks. R/O desalinated, drinking-water-filtered water is the best, especially when the watermaker is powered by wind and solar. Water is also very dangerous. When it’s fouled by seeping cracks from the bilge, the real profanities settle into your body: salt and motor oil and slime and the bacteria that love them all. We made ourselves sick on Nomad, unaware that our weird physical reality was a set of symptoms. Everywhere we went, we put the local water into our tanks. Everywhere we went, we were befouled. And then we got our lovely Sailing Vessel and Sovereign Nation Cetacea, affectionately abbreviated S/V S.N. Cetacea. This boat came to us with a watermaker, a really good one, that had an opaque history. The P(revious) O(wner) had never touched it. The people before him? Who knows. What we knew was that we needed to make the system operational and we did. We cleaned it up, re-plumbed the whole mess and it worked! We were thrilled. This summer, we’ve run this motor over 50 hours. In that time, we’ve made about 250 gallons of “Clear, Clean”, water. For us, that’s enough for daily life and, for the Katadyn PowerSurvivor 80E (our watermaker), that’s more than the nominal yield. Over the Down East Maine part of our travels, we had a new and disturbing experience. The watermaker popped the circuit breaker. The next time, it popped on startup but was okay on a second attempt. Then we pickled it with biocide to protect the delicate R/O membrane from bacterial growth and let it sit for our entire Nova Scotia experience. The problem got progressively worse on the sail from Yarmouth to P-town, when it just up-n-quit. I (James) was trying to get some shut-eye on my down watch when I heard the issue actually[…]

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