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View Full Version : sawyer vs. katadyn be free



Megapixel
03-25-2018, 09:48
Anyone used the sawyer squeeze and the katadyn be free? It seems the be free may be better flow and more durable as far as the bag goes; thinking about switching but looking for some feedback first... Thanks in advance.

Rex Clifton
03-25-2018, 14:54
I used both and the Bee Free clogged on me the first trip (may have gotten a lemon). I've been using the Squeeze for some time and, although its slowed down some, it still works great. Unless you need a filter right away, I'd wait. Sawyer just released a new filter that, for now, is only available in their water purifier kits. They're expected to sell the filter separate in the not-to-distant future and, based on YouTube reviews, it works really well.

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Venchka
03-25-2018, 18:03
I have a BeFree and Hydrapak 2 L Seeker.
Itís been on the shelf since I got back from Wyoming last September. I got it out last week to exercise it. The flow had slowed but still passing water.
I soaked it in tap water for an afternoon. The flow rate was back to normal.
30 seconds per liter.
The Hydrapak Seeker has a leak free warranty.
Nobody reporting the BeFree clogging up has mentioned any warranty service. I wonder why that is?
In my case, soaking and exercising the BeFree filter keeps it flowing.
Wayne

Venchka
03-25-2018, 18:05
PS:
Filter and 2 L soft bottle weighs 3.75 ounces.
Wayne

Megapixel
03-26-2018, 10:17
Thanks again for your experiences.I have seen several busted kit bags on the sawyer, but other than that it has performed perfectly. Once a bag busts, trying to squeeze water through a smart water bottle or similar is a noisy, aggravating affair.

Rex Clifton
03-26-2018, 11:20
Thanks again for your experiences.I have seen several busted kit bags on the sawyer, but other than that it has performed perfectly. Once a bag busts, trying to squeeze water through a smart water bottle or similar is a noisy, aggravating affair.Your best bet is to use the Sawyer bags as backup only, they're garbage. I use an Evernew 2 litre bag, works great and, for three years, has never failed me. I'd use my Platy bag, but the threads are not compatible.

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jefals
03-26-2018, 11:43
the rep at REI told me if I got the sawyer, I should get another bag to use with it, cause the sawyer one tends to break at the neck. Seemed to me to ve a good reason just to stay away from the sawyer all together.

nsherry61
03-26-2018, 12:43
Your best bet is to use the Sawyer bags as backup only, they're garbage. I use an Evernew 2 litre bag, works great and, for three years, has never failed me. . .
There is no doubt that the Evernew bag is significantly stouter than the Sawyer bags. But, with years and miles of use (okay, I admit, I often don't treat my water, but when I do . . .) I've never had my Sawyer bag fail. Their current bags (not the earliest that were pretty bad) are fine unless you are into brutalizing your gear. I've watch other peoples' Sawyer bags fail while they were sitting on them or squeezing them like there was no tomorrow instead of back-flushing their filter and squeezing gently and firmly.

Venchka
03-26-2018, 16:18
I always worry about operator error contributing to failure in online reviews.
Even though Hydrapak will replace the Seeker if it leaks, that wonít help in the middle of nowhere. Iíll buy a backup the next time Iím in an REI. Cheap insurance. Leave one of the Platys at home.
Wayne

Maui Rhino
03-26-2018, 20:21
No experience yet with the BeFree, but I've been thinking about it. I already have two 3L Seekers for long water carries and really like them. I bought a Sawyer several years ago and use it in a gravity system. No squeezing or ruptured bags for me.....

Back flushing your filter with distilled water after trips, or before long storage will also help keep it flowing freely. Minerals in tap water will crystalize in the filter and clog it up. Briefly soaking your filter in vinegar can restore the filter if flow had been reduced by crystalization.

BuckeyeBill
03-26-2018, 22:10
There is no doubt that the Evernew bag is significantly stouter than the Sawyer bags. But, with years and miles of use (okay, I admit, I often don't treat my water, but when I do . . .) I've never had my Sawyer bag fail. Their current bags (not the earliest that were pretty bad) are fine unless you are into brutalizing your gear. I've watch other peoples' Sawyer bags fail while they were sitting on them or squeezing them like there was no tomorrow instead of back-flushing their filter and squeezing gently and firmly.

Everything you are saying is true. People who don't know any better use things in a manner that they were not made to be used. Then they want the factory to replace it under warranty. I sold my original Sawyer Squeeze with a few Evernew bags when Sawyer came out with the Sawyer Squeeze Plus. The bags that came with it work fine for me, but I don't wring the bag out like a washcloth.


No experience yet with the BeFree, but I've been thinking about it. I already have two 3L Seekers for long water carries and really like them. I bought a Sawyer several years ago and use it in a gravity system. No squeezing or ruptured bags for me.....

Back flushing your filter with distilled water after trips, or before long storage will also help keep it flowing freely. Minerals in tap water will crystalize in the filter and clog it up. Briefly soaking your filter in vinegar can restore the filter if flow had been reduced by crystalization.

Here is more good advice. The only thing I would add is after a vinegar soak, back flush it several times to remove the vinegar taste. Yes I did not do this once and learned a very valuable lesson.

Burrhead
03-27-2018, 05:22
I have been using the Sawyer bags for two years, around 120 nights and haven't had one rupture.....yet!

Hosh
03-27-2018, 21:32
Yeah, depends on how you treat your gear

Shrewd
03-28-2018, 10:24
General consensus these days is that Sawyer beefed up those bags, buttttttt theyíll still eventually pop.

My 2 liter platypus also popped, maybe about halfway into my thru?

I replaced it eventually but also used smartwater bottles. My water kit was kind of constantly in flux.

Iím curious about the befree but I need to see some thru hiker reviews before I commit.
Then again I work at rei now and may just grab one with my discount to play with it

wiiawiwb
05-11-2018, 17:51
I used both and the Bee Free clogged on me the first trip (may have gotten a lemon). I've been using the Squeeze for some time and, although its slowed down some, it still works great. Unless you need a filter right away, I'd wait. Sawyer just released a new filter that, for now, is only available in their water purifier kits. They're expected to sell the filter separate in the not-to-distant future and, based on YouTube reviews, it works really well. Sent from my SM-G955U1 using Tapatalk

Are you referring to the gravity feed system that filters to .02 micron (versus .1 micron)?

https://sawyer.com/products/sawyer-complete-4-liter-dual-bag-water-purifier-system/

Rex Clifton
05-11-2018, 17:56
Are you referring to the gravity feed system that filters to .02 micron (versus .1 micron)?

https://sawyer.com/products/sawyer-complete-4-liter-dual-bag-water-purifier-system/

No, this one:

https://www.amazon.com/Sawyer-Products-SP4320-Chemicals-Pesticides/dp/B0757RKM6R/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&qid=1526075765&sr=8-10&keywords=sawyer+water+filters


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Shrewd
05-11-2018, 22:27
Doesnít the bottle work with the filter?

I thought the filter was pretty much the same but the bottle uses its own foam mechanism

Uncle Joe
05-11-2018, 22:33
the rep at REI told me if I got the sawyer, I should get another bag to use with it, cause the sawyer one tends to break at the neck. Seemed to me to ve a good reason just to stay away from the sawyer all together.
I've read a lot of people have bag failures but I have never had one fail, FWIW. But you can use any bad you want, really.

Burrhead
05-12-2018, 08:15
My Sawyer bags are doing fine after 2+ years. The use is roughly half and half between a gravity system with the sawyer squeeze and being rolled with a sawyer mini. IMHO, a lot of the failures are from squeezing the bags with the mini's and just not being patient enough. There is only so much liquid you can get through an approximately 3 millimeter hole no matter how hard you try.

Venchka
05-12-2018, 16:34
Meanwhile,
Hydrapak has a forever guarantee. Hydrapak is also making Osprey bladders now.
https://hydrapak.com/support/warranty/
My Seeker 2L and BeFree filter are flowing at the rate of 30 seconds per liter. Just for grins I hung the Seeker over my Nalgene 3 quart soft canteen. I came back a couple hours later and the Seeker was empty. A vent in the Seeker would be nice. Although I could squeeze the Seeker dry faster than I could walk to a tree and hang it.
One Geezerís experience.
Wayne

Rex Clifton
05-12-2018, 21:30
Doesnít the bottle work with the filter?

I thought the filter was pretty much the same but the bottle uses its own foam mechanismThe filter is a scaled down version of the Squeeze, with a better flow rate. It works independently from the bottle, which has some kind of foam in it, but is big and clunky, not well suited suited backpacking (I checked it out at REI). I'm planning to buy either when they sell the filter separate or discount the kit to a price that makes sense (maybe $30), throwing the bottle away.

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nsherry61
05-12-2018, 23:58
The filter is a scaled down version of the Squeeze, with a better flow rate. It works independently from the bottle, which has some kind of foam in it, but is big and clunky, not well suited suited backpacking (I checked it out at REI). I'm planning to buy either when they sell the filter separate or discount the kit to a price that makes sense (maybe $30), throwing the bottle away.
The filter is essentially the Sawyer Mini, already sold separately. The bottle is a pretty amazing design that does what the filter does not. The foam in the bottle does chemistry to kill viruses, and/or remove heavy metals, chemicals, etc, depending on which bottle system you choose. And the bottle works a lot like a bottle, is shaped like a bottle, weighs about as much as a bottle, but does all the chemical magic with your water, so I'm not sure what the problem you see with the bottle is.

Actually, given what these magic bottles do compared to anything else available on the market that can do the same thing, those sawyer purifiers are pretty awesomely light and affordable and fast if you want what they deliver on.

Personally, getting me to even filter my water for bacteria and protozoa is an accomplishment. Getting me to pay additional dollars, weight and time for my water processing to include removal of viruses, heavy metals, and organics is more than I'm interested in for backcountry drinking. BUT, for 3rd world water or front-country water, or paranoid backpackers, these things should be fantastic.

TMathers
08-11-2018, 09:27
I have just seen to many negative reviews on the be free system and to many good reviews on the sawyer squeeze to choose anything different.
Sawyer seems to lead the pack by a long shot.

Venchka
08-11-2018, 09:53
Deliriously happy with my 3.75 ounce BeFree filter and 2 liter Hydrapak Seeker soft bottle.
Have fun Yíall!
Wayne

johnspenn
08-13-2018, 19:56
Deliriously happy with my 3.75 ounce BeFree filter and 2 liter Hydrapak Seeker soft bottle.
Have fun Y’all!
Wayne

Me too. I originally bought the BeFree with the .7L flask, and then got one with the 1L flask. I also have a 2 and a 3 liter Hydrapak soft bladder to complement and for long water carries when needed. So amazingly easy to resupply water with these. They make what used to be a chore a pleasant experience.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hkqehWdHOeY

Crushed Grapes
08-13-2018, 20:34
Couldn't be happier with my BeFree. My wife uses the Sawyer and she likes that, but we haven't been out together to compare the two side by side yet.

Before the BeFree I used a Steripen. Never again...