Pine Xylem Water Filter

Discussion in 'Finding, Purifying, and Storing Water' started by Justin Baker, Jan 19, 2020.

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  1. Justin Baker

    Justin Baker Expert Member
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    I recently came across an article that talked about MIT researchers testing the validity of a method I have used before: the pine xylem filter. As long as you have access to some tubing and something to affix it to the plug you make (in this picture they use a screw/band wormgear clamp. handy, to be sure, but there are much more readily available and realistic ways to make this happen). Of course, the researchers are not doing it for a survivalist reason, merely a humanitarian reason, but the process, and concept remain sound under scientific scrutiny, which is why I wanted to share it with you all!
    2e194352f0f8960ae2e0065c89dd213c.jpeg
     
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  2. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Good afternoon Justin,

    Appreciate this info - and also the very clear picture chart !

    I've heard of system but was told it doesn't filter out the pathogen type germs and takes ages to collect an amount of water needed.
     
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  3. Justin Baker

    Justin Baker Expert Member
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    ~ the research shows that it filters up to 100 nanometer diameter particles, which means bacteria are filtered out completely (they tested it w/ E. coli!), but the 100 nanometer limit is too big for viruses.
    They filled the tube with 5 milliliters of water under 5 pounds per square inch of pressure (that's a gravitational pressure head of about 2 m or so).. The water filtered through at the rate of 0.05 milliliters per second. That flow rate is equivalent to more than 4 liters per day, enough to keep one person in drinking water. That’s from a filter with an area of about 1 cm².
     
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  4. Justin Baker

    Justin Baker Expert Member
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    I absolutely love the manners of most of the people on this forum! Good afternoon to you!
     
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  5. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Good afternoon Justin,

    Appreciate this info.

    Had not known the collection volume was that much.
     
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  6. Justin Baker

    Justin Baker Expert Member
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    @Pragmatist
    It is a lot more than you would think, for sure, but it's also very important to re-make the filter ever day, as the organics of the xylem clog up.
     
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  7. TexDanm

    TexDanm Shadow Dancer
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    Over time your body will adapt and improve in its ability to deal with the many bacteria that are everywhere even in "clean" water. While you are adjusting you are going to spend a lot of time with diarrhea. this is one reason that I consider Imodium antidiarrheal a must in large quantities. Even if you filter your water you are going to be exposed to all sorts of new pathogens and until your body's immune system gets used to it the trots are an almost certainty. You won't filter the water that you bathe in or wash your clothes and dishes in so it is inevitable. If you worry about this too much you are going to drive yourself crazy. Survival is going to be about figuring out which risks you can live with and which you just can't. This is going to be hard because we now live in a world where there is NO acceptable risk.
     
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  8. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Good morning Justin,

    Still, in practical terms, a user in evac mode needs water safe from water borne diseases. This same "on the go" status means there are time restraints.

    Our personal water treatment is the RO method used in a Katadyn Survivor 35 model. Most water sources here and well inland are seawater and brackish water.
     
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  9. TexDanm

    TexDanm Shadow Dancer
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    Howdy, do from a Gulf Coastal boy. On a side note you do know that there is fresh water easily available even on a beach, don't you? All you have to do is back off the beach a piece and then dig down in the sand until you reach the tater table. When the sand is wet dig just a little deeper and then stop. On a beach that is only a couple of feet down. Cover the hole and come back later and there will be water in that hole. Freshwater floats on top of saltwater and you can drink the water off the top of the water that has filled the hole with a straw. When it rains the freshwater soaks into the sand but doesn't mix with the saltwater. Saltwater is in solution and so the salt is bound. The rainwater will not only be fresh but should be pretty safe to drink. If you are worried you can carefully pull the freshwater off and then filter it.

    I got this from a cousin that was taught it in the military in one of his survival courses that all piolets had to do. I lived on the coast at that time and so naturally had to go out and give it a try. You have to be gentle so it doesn't get stirred up and depending on how much rain has fallen recently you might need several holes but you won't die of thirst.
     
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  10. Pragmatist

    Pragmatist Master Survivalist
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    Good morning TexDanm,

    I've taught shore lines and water sources near beaches.

    This got famous from a Cold War era USAF survival manual, AF Manual 64-5. For outright dire needs, yes, it could work to preserve life until the fleet of SAR aircraft arrive for rescue.

    "Easily available" depends on much.

    The basic lesson is to leave the shore/beach and go past the second row of sand dunes. Then start digging.

    Water quantities are small relative to the requirements of a survivalist under stress, in GOOD status and frequently enough being injured or sick.

    It's better to carry some extra water on the belt than a post hole digger. Shoveling is even more fatiguing.
     
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