View Full Version : Sawyer Mini on Amazon for $10.48

11-30-2016, 00:47
Just came across this. Basically half price.


11-30-2016, 09:12
Great, but I have both, and will only bring the larger one, flow rate on the mini is too slow. YMMV

11-30-2016, 10:32
Price is now back to $19.97.

11-30-2016, 11:08
Just came across this. Basically half price.


Unless Paul wants to work Hard to fill his water bottles I'd buy the regular sawyer....[emoji51]

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11-30-2016, 12:13
Interestingly enough, I've had mixed results with the Sawyer Mini.

I use the Sawyer Mini in a gravity feed setup where I usually can filter 2L in about 4 minutes.

Usually, the Mini works fine with no flow issues:
I buy a new one at the start of the year, take it camping for long weekends in GSMNP about a half dozen times, and back flush it when I get home. I don't really notice a difference in flow from a brand new filter v. a filter I've used for a year.

This summer, I ran into slowing flows hiking the JMT:
Filter rates seemed normal at the start of the trip. But even though I was back flushing every other day, after a week or so, the flow rate was starting to get noticeably slower. I started back flushing every day, but it didn't make a difference and the flow rate continued to diminish over time.

I'm not sure why I had such different results, but here is my best guess:
Hard Water Stain buildup.

USUALLY, the GSMNP averages a Relative Humidity of 110%, so the filter never dries out in the field. At home, the filter sits in an air-conditioned room where Relative Humidity is typically about 40%-50%.

But on the JMT, I bet the Relative Humidity was <10%.

So I'm thinking that even though the filter sits at home for weeks-on-end, I don't think the filter is drying out much (internally) because of the high humidity in the house. But on the JMT, the humidity was so low that I'm thinking more of the internal water was able to evaporate leaving behind hard-water deposits that back-flushing doesn't remove.

I'd love to hear some feedback from other's experience with their Mini to see if it supports or refutes this theory.

Of course for those that like to use their Sawyer using the squeeze method, I could see where they would appreciate the higher flow capacity of the larger version over the Mini strait out of the box.

11-30-2016, 12:27
I don't find the Mini all that slow as long as you back flush regularly - once a day for me, takes about 30 seconds to back flush. I think it is fine for one person.

You do need to back flush effectively. I've seen folks just try to blow it out, or use a water bottle to back flush. Neither will generate the power that the syringe does. My method for back flushing: Fill the syringe with clean water, hold the out flow end of the filter against the tip of the syringe with both hands, place the plunger of the syringe against my chest, pull the filter into my body, the water sprays out five to six feet, so aim away from others.

I've used mine twice for JMT hikes, up to three weeks at a time, no problems. I use the squeeze method exclusively. YMMV I guess.

11-30-2016, 12:32
Gravity filtering with a mini is just fine, works great when you want to camel up like at the end of the day or between long stretches with no water. But if you're hiking in an area with lots of water, I'd rather just carry a smaller amount of spare water to save weight, and fill up more often, and in those scenarios, I prefer the speed of the regular Squeeze. So for me, it really depends on the situation.

11-30-2016, 14:44
...I've used mine twice for JMT hikes, up to three weeks at a time, no problems. I use the squeeze method exclusively. YMMV I guess.
I back flushed as you described (ok, maybe not a 6' spray, but 3' to 4')... so the only difference would be that I back flushed every other day rather than every day (at first).

My hike was only 17 days. While the Mini remained usable, by the 16th day, flow was extremely slow.

But the fact you've used the mini twice on the JMT would seem to preclude my theory.

11-30-2016, 14:58
I've used both the regular and the mini over the years. the Mini is definitely slower, so if you filter for more than one person, or are impatient, then go with the regular. If space/weight is primary concern, I find the Mini perfectly fine. I usually just filter my water while I wait for my supper to cook.

Either one is much more pleasant and faster than the old Iodine tablets, faster than AquaMira.

11-30-2016, 15:32
I use the mini in-line, so no squeezing or gravity filtering. Works great in-line. On my thru hike, I flushed it once every week or so. No problems at all.

I remember the old days of the PUR scout (1 lb) and other pump filters. In my opinion, whether you use the mini or the squeeze, they cost less, weigh less and are far superior to the other options. Between the two, it comes down to personal preference.

12-02-2016, 20:23
I've also had mixed results with the mini. I've used it on a half dozen trips or so and always had varying flow rates. I've lost confidence in the mini so I've decided to go to the squeeze now. Saving an ounce or so is just not worth it to me. I'll gladly trade that ounce for the peace of mind, especially when it comes to my water setup.

12-03-2016, 00:26
I used a Mini for a couple of years until I accidentally let it freeze. Switched to the regular one and haven't looked back. Much better flow rate. For back flushing I epoxied 2 bottle caps together and drilled a hole in them. I use this to attach my clean water bottle directly to the squeeze and flush it. Only works for the squeeze though.

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12-03-2016, 06:39
After hearing so many complaints about the mini, primarily related to slow filter rates after a few uses, we went with the squeeze. An ounce and a half heavier, but much more reliable it seems.