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Katadyn BeFree water filter

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Katadyn BeFree water filter
« on: May 22, 2017, 03:55:00 PM »
Anyone used this one yet?  It looks like a real improvement in drink as you go filters.  Light, easily cleanable, good flow.  Comes in 20 oz. and 32 oz.  Can be used with bigger 2 and 3 liter Hydrapak containers too.  I think I am going to pick one up at the REI sale and begin testing.

Here is a really good and thorough thread with just about everything you could want to know or ask about it, check out the videos and links.  Several users in the Grand Canyon and other desert locations.  No it does not do heavy metals or chemicals.

  2.3 oz. dry with the bottle and filter!
« Last Edit: May 22, 2017, 04:18:22 PM by mule ears »
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
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Offline House Made of Dawn

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Re: Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2017, 05:32:13 PM »
Okay, you have my attention. I'll comb through this post haste. Also looking forward to your assessment of real world performance. Thanks, ME.
"The trick, William Potter, is not minding that it hurts."

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Offline venchka

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Re: Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2017, 11:17:24 AM »
I bought the filter only and the Hydrapak 2 liter soft bottle in March. 4 ounces total weight.
I managed to squeeze 1 liter of water through the filter in about 35 seconds.
I replaced the flip top cap that came with the filter with a push pull sport cap from Essentia water bottles. The factory cap and a second sports cap are in my pack as spares. The filter needs a cap or it's almost useless.
I won't be able to use the filter in the real world until I go to Colorado and Wyoming around Labor Day.
The BeFree and Hydrapak are ridiculously smaller and lighter than the PUR and MSR filters I have been using.
Wayne


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Offline venchka

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Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2017, 06:12:08 PM »
Back with a field use report.
Total weight for the filter and 2 liter soft bottle is 3.8 ounces.
I used my BeFree filter and HydraPak 2 liter soft bottle to collect and filter water in Colorado and Wyoming. The HydraPak was easy to fill in various free flowing streams in as little as a couple inches of water.
Like Fish Creek. Wind River Range



The BeFree filter then emptied the 2 liters in 2-3 minuets, based on my enthusiasm to squeeze the bottle. I probably filtered 12-16 liters total.
The BeFree filter and HydraPak 2 liter bottle were 100% satisfactory for my needs.
Wayne


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« Last Edit: October 13, 2017, 06:24:44 PM by venchka »
Wayne
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Re: Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2017, 08:08:24 AM »
I have been using the BeFree now since summer on 3 trips but the real test was in Big Bend with both variable quality spring water and the Rio Grande and it worked great.  We filtered around 50 liters on the last trip and while its flow slowed a little after hitting the Rio there was never any question it would hold up.  After I got home I gave it a cleaning with some bleach and it completely restored the flow.  It is not so much the big visible stuff in water, that is easily swished away, it is the microscopic stuff that you are actually trying to filter out that clogs it up.

Here is another long thread about people having some issues with it and how they are cleaning it.

I think it will become a winner in the long run and I am still going to carry it as my main water filter with tablets as backup.  You cannot believe how fast, how quick the flow is.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2017, 09:07:03 AM by mule ears »
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
http://40yearsofwalking.wordpress.com/

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Offline DesertRatShorty

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Re: Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #5 on: December 26, 2017, 09:11:35 AM »
Seems like a nice piece of gear. I've used the Sawyer Squeeze filter on a few trips, it weighs in at around 4 oz when you include the syringe for backwashing. I may wait a year or two until they come up with a 1 oz solution .
« Last Edit: December 26, 2017, 10:16:40 AM by DesertRatShorty »
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Offline Keepa

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Re: Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2018, 11:22:16 PM »
I just bought the BeFree 1L and tested it at home, it was twice as fast as the Sawyer Mini. On a three run test with squeezing, the BeFree averaged  36 seconds, the Sawyer 66. On the gravity test (no squeezing) the BeFree filtered 1L in 3:25, the Sawyer in 8:34.

I am sold. I am glad to hear that it worked well in Big Bend and the silty waters of the Rio Grande.

Up until now I have been using the Steripen, but the BeFree is a game changer. The lightest Steripen I have is the Freedom (rechargable), at 2.6 ounces. Comparable to the BeFree in weight BUT, and here is the difference, I don't need to carry a separate Nalgene bottle (mine is 3.8 ounces) which the Steripen requires, and the Steripen filter cap (1.4 ounces). Also for longer trips factor in the solar charger and USB cable (6 ounces). The Steripen system comes in at 13.8 ounces, while the BeFree 1L is only 2.3 ounces.

So here is my question. I am thinking of bringing two BeFree 1L when hiking. The second one will be my backup method. The question is, should the backup method of purification be different from the primary method? If the primary method fails, and the backup method is the same, wouldn't that fail also?

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Re: Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2018, 06:26:25 AM »
That would be my thinking, that the back up should be different.  I am carrying chlorine dioxide tablets, 20 weigh .7 oz and can stay in my kit for years just in case.  But some folks are carrying a spare BeFree filter only as their spare (no bottle).
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
http://40yearsofwalking.wordpress.com/

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Offline Keepa

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Re: Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2018, 09:17:04 AM »
That's my thinking as well. On the other hand, the cause of failure has to be considered. For the BeFree, it is clogging. This can be avoided by filtering the water -- a straining bag does the trick nicely, I got one from Amazon, it is .5 ounces and is used to strain almond milk, nut meg, cold brews...

Even if it fails, it would not be a sudden failure. It takes a while to clog. So having a second BeFree would get you at least to your next resupply point.

I am thinking of the Arizona Trail, where a lot of the water sources are stock tanks. But filtering the water before running through the BeFree should avoid clogging.

But I am still undecided!

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Offline RichardM

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Re: Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2018, 12:44:53 PM »
From some of the reviews I've read, the more worrisome failure mode of the BeFree is the bag splitting open. Maybe that was just the first versions and that problem has been fixed? I would go with a second bag as backup along with chlorine dioxide tablets. Toss in a couple of coffee filters to pre-strain silty or funky water.

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Re: Katadyn BeFree water filter
« Reply #10 on: January 17, 2018, 01:29:46 PM »
From some of the reviews I've read, the more worrisome failure mode of the BeFree is the bag splitting open. Maybe that was just the first versions and that problem has been fixed? I would go with a second bag as backup along with chlorine dioxide tablets. Toss in a couple of coffee filters to pre-strain silty or funky water.

I think they have gotten ahead of that problem.

found this else where:
Quote
Found this on REI’s web page:

https://www.rei.com/product/116364/katadyn-befree-collapsible-water-filter-bottle-338-fl-oz

mkgil · 2 days ago
Some customers have reported that the collapsible silicone seam that connects to the hard plastic has failed. This has been mentioned elsewhere on the Web. Has Hydrapak/Katadyn fixed this yet?

KatadynCS · a day ago
Hydrapak has fixed this limited problem and now conducts a 100% quality test of all products to ensure the Katadyn BeFree Hydrapak flask is properly welded. Overall, less than 0.5% of products ever had a problem, however both Hydrapak and Katadyn take all problems seriously and worked very diligently to address this issue. All Katadyn BeFree filters come with a 2 year NO LEAK GUARANTEE. If any leakage occurs customers can receive a FREE replacement flask by contacting either Hydrapak or Katadyn directly.
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
http://40yearsofwalking.wordpress.com/

 


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