Well, guess its time for my first gear review! I recently ordered a Berkey Light Water Filter from The Berkey Guy at http://directive21.com. As a Support Brigade member over at http://www.thesurvivalpodcast.com I got a free sport bottle and a discount with my purchase. So, I ended up with 2 sport water bottles, the arsenic/fluoride filters and the Big Berkey system with 2 black filters. I had to have it shipped to family in Alabama since the Berkey company will not allow any of their affiliates to ship directly to California due to ongoing tax issues. California wants to impose pay to play on Berkey’s sales through its associates and so they won’t do business in California. The additional cost to have it re-shipped to me was about $20.
Once I opened it, I was presented with a set of instructions for putting the system together and another set for installing the fluoride filters. These were fairly intuitive but not well illustrated and missing minor but helpful details. For example, the seal on the inside of the spigot has a dimple on one side. Nothing indicates which direction it should face, and it leaks until installed properly.
The item is listed as being suitable for camping. I doubt the plastic items would survive the kind of abuse involved in that, but it is very well suited for home use and, with careful packing, should last us many moves. The flow rate is slow, but the capacity is sufficient that it should be able to be filled and allowed to filter overnight and be good for the next day.
The spigot is almost flush with the bottom and a suitable stand would have been a good investment. They sell a stand for $29, Ill be looking for something cheaper.
I really like the life of the filters. This will be extremely useful to us living in Nepal, knowing I have about 3 years’ worth of normal use on a set of filters and the sport bottles will, hopefully, help keep us from catching anything nasty from local water as we travel. I will be looking to get a replacement set of the spigot and seals, as this seems the most likely point of failure due to the inherent delicacy of the plastic parts.
Overall, I am very happy with this purchase and would recommend it as one of the first major purchases of a serious prepper.