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#124371 - 02/19/08 03:27 PM Caveat Emptor: Surplus Reverse Osmosis units
TomApple Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 09/05/06
Posts: 80
Loc: Suffolk, Va.
Greetings Liste,

I've noticed recently several places including EBay are selling surplus Navy Manual Reverse Osmosis Desalinators (MROD) which are a military version of Katadyn's Survivor 35.

Please note that all of these units should be serviced prior to usage. At the very least, the biocide should be flushed out and changed. Some places are claiming that they are "new" however that is misleading. Most of those units have been packed and serviced several times. All the units surplussed require servicing as mold and other yucky stuff have been known to grow in these units after an extended period of time (5 years).

You can find some pretty good deals on these units, but I would not use them as-is.

Regards,

Tom Apple

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#124417 - 02/19/08 08:08 PM Re: Caveat Emptor: Surplus Reverse Osmosis units [Re: TomApple]
Art_in_FL Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 09/01/07
Posts: 2432
RO units can also suffer from poor handling and use. Improper storage, failure to clean and exposure to various chemicals can make these units unreliable. Most RO membranes suffer if they are exposed to petroleum products. Clue: if the Navy doesn't want them any more they may be cost-prohibitive to repair. Maybe not.

For survival use I would hate to be putting my trust into a RO unit only to find out the membrane or seals are pretty much shot. IMHO it is better to know you Don't have something than to think and act like you do and then find out you really don't. Knowing I didn't have a functional RO unit I could ration my water much more closely, set up a coupe of solar stills or allocate more time to finding water.

Thinking I had a functioning RO unit I might neglect those options because I'm firm in my belief that water was just a few squeezes away. Now, hot tired and thirsty I break out my RO unit and are sorely disappointed. Now I'm both dehydrated and my is sinking fast because I have fooled myself.

I don't know abut these particular models but last I heard Katydyn offered replacement membranes and seal kits for all its products. IMO it would be wise to replace the membrane and seals if they are anything less than pristine.

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#124487 - 02/20/08 01:01 PM Re: Caveat Emptor: Surplus Reverse Osmosis units [Re: Art_in_FL]
TomApple Offline
Journeyman

Registered: 09/05/06
Posts: 80
Loc: Suffolk, Va.
All the RO units sold by the Navy have had good care and regular servicing and overhaul. The reason they are being sold is that we have fewer life rafts and need fewer MRODs so there is a surplus of these items.

My biggest concern is the biocide used, sodium bisulfate IIRC, breaks down over time and stuff begins to grow inside. Now our testing hasn't found anything truly dangerous, however we do know that the biocide doesn't work indefinitely.

I contacted the Government Liquidators people and advised them to include a more visible notice that these items require service prior to useage. They are coded as condition "F7" which means it requires overhaul, but I'm sure many of the people buying these don't understand that code. Since the MRODs are packed, sealed, and look new, some people may assume it's OK to use it out of the box.

If the MROD is within five years of its overhaul date then it's good to go. Anything over that should be tested or at the very least, the biocide should be replaced.

Regards,

Tom A.

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#124968 - 02/23/08 07:19 PM Re: Caveat Emptor: Surplus Reverse Osmosis units [Re: TomApple]
CJK Offline
Addict

Registered: 08/14/05
Posts: 560
Loc: FL, USA
Not that I planned on getting one.....but thank you....some of the info was good to know.

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