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  1. #1
    Registered User Bouncy's Avatar
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    Default steripen users help

    Hello,
    I was planning on using the Sawyer squeeze but was curious about the steripen and how long it lasts? Also has anyone used one of the off brand named ones that are cheaper and how long do they last? Going SOBO in July 2013.
    Thanks,
    Bouncy

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bouncy View Post
    Hello,
    I was planning on using the Sawyer squeeze but was curious about the steripen and how long it lasts? Also has anyone used one of the off brand named ones that are cheaper and how long do they last? Going SOBO in July 2013.
    Thanks,
    Bouncy
    I have a Steripen brand purifier. Can't tell you how long it last because it still works. Seems like back up batteries are a no brainier though.

    If it fails, you should consider how comfortable you are with "plan B". I usually hike with other guys who have filters. I can just borrow theirs if my steripen fails. If you are hiking alone or without a companion that has another purifier, "plan B" may be to drink unfiltered water. This might not be too bad considering that many people hike the whole trail and never treat water at all.

  3. #3
    Registered User ChinMusic's Avatar
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    I have been using a Steripen for years. I have a perfectly funtioning Classic but have switched to the Opti. I can't tell you how long it will work since both are still functioning perfectly.

    From what I can see the Sawyer Squeeze is a good product as well.
    Fear ridges that are depicted as flat lines on a profile map.

  4. #4
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    Why not treat the water in the Sawyer bag with a few drops of bleach and then filter? then you dont need to worry about the steripen. or you can boil it. or get another filter and filter it twice. or a combination of all mentioned. i understand that pee is sterile, but i would not recommend that route as a plan b. i used bleach from GA-ME. dont start out carrying the full gallon though. it gets heavy.

  5. #5
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    Carry a 1 or 2 oz. eyedropper for your chlorine bleach and charm the little old ladies at the laundry mat for a refill as needed.
    "Chainsaw" GA-ME 2011

  6. #6
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    + 1 to DonH he earned it!

  7. #7
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    Can you link to the off brand ones. I know camelback has one that uses a nalgene bottle with a UV light, and MSR uses a battery powered purifier that uses salt, but no other brand that uses UV.

  8. #8
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    According to the specs with my SteriPen, the lamp is good for 8,000 treatments (1 liter each) and 2 regular batteries will treat about 50 liters of water (about 30 liters for rechargeables). Based on that, a set of batteries should last about 2 weeks+ (treating 4 liters/day), and the lamp will probably outlast the whole shebang, that is I'll probably drop it or step on it or lose it before the lamp wears out!

    I like it - it's my go-to treatment now. Quick, effective, user-friendly, great for seances, no affect on taste. I use a McNett filter bottle for backup. I'm already carrying the bottle, so only the filter itself is extra weight.

  9. #9
    Some days, it's not worth chewing through the restraints.
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    BTW, I use my cooking pot for treatment. I can scoop up a liter of water, then sit down and treat in a comfortable place, no need to be stuck at the water source. I treat in the pot, pour into a bottle, and drink whatever's left. I usually treat & drink a full liter right there, and find I drank more using the pen than I did using a filter just because it was so easy.

  10. #10
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    I started my thru in '11 with a steripen. Lasted me 100ish miles before it stopped working.
    I did bring a eye dropper of bleach for backup, but looking back if you need a backup, your primary product is flawed.

    Though a UV pen is a great idea, I would never try one again. That thing was a hunk of junk that I am thankful I saved the receipt for.

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    My Classic has been working since 2010 with no problems. I love it! It is super fast! I keep it in the padded pouch and take care of it. One of the best investments I have made as far as drinking water goes. However, I always keep aqua-mira drops as a safety back-up, or if I run into really cloudy/muddy water.
    The hand may be quicker than the eye, but it is often proven that the mouth is a thousand times faster than the brain!

    Gipsy

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lando11 View Post
    I started my thru in '11 with a steripen. Lasted me 100ish miles before it stopped working.
    I did bring a eye dropper of bleach for backup, but looking back if you need a backup, your primary product is flawed.
    I used the SP Classic for the second half of my thru. I started having problems with it in VT. It started getting hard to get a full cycle out of it. I called SP and they sent me a new one to Hanover, NH (great customer service!). That one went the rest of the way. What I found out later is that if you don't dry them after you're done using them moisture seeps into the electronics and cause a short cycle/incomplete dose red light. The fix for that is to occasionally leave it out in the sun for a while with the batteries and cover removed.

    I would suggest that you carry a back up for whatever method you use. I saw an AquaMira bottle split and leak in someone's pack. You can't treat water with Part A only!
    "Chainsaw" GA-ME 2011

  13. #13
    AT NOBO2010 / SOBO2011 Maddog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lando11 View Post
    I started my thru in '11 with a steripen. Lasted me 100ish miles before it stopped working.
    I did bring a eye dropper of bleach for backup, but looking back if you need a backup, your primary product is flawed.

    Though a UV pen is a great idea, I would never try one again. That thing was a hunk of junk that I am thankful I saved the receipt for.
    +1 The first time I tried to use my steripen (Gooch Gap) it over-heated and melted. I sent it back to REI from Neels Gap! YMMV! Maddog
    "You do more hiking with your head than your feet!" Emma "Grandma" Gatewood...HYOY!!!
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  14. #14
    GA-ME 2011
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    Well you're not suppose to jump it from your car battery

    never heard of one melting
    "Chainsaw" GA-ME 2011

  15. #15
    AT NOBO2010 / SOBO2011 Maddog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Don H View Post
    Well you're not suppose to jump it from your car battery

    never heard of one melting
    Me either! I'm glad I had a "plan B"! Maddog
    "You do more hiking with your head than your feet!" Emma "Grandma" Gatewood...HYOY!!!
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    Lando11, never had a problem with my steripen. You must have got a lemon.

  17. #17
    Registered User TT2's Avatar
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    My Steripen died on day one of a section hike. My hiking buddy pulled his new one out, and it was no good either. Both worked when tested pre-hike. Bring Aqua-Mira.

    In my experience they last less than one day.

  18. #18
    GA-ME 2011
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    TT2, which model did you have?
    "Chainsaw" GA-ME 2011

  19. #19
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    TT2, i also have not had much luck with the steripen. I went through 2 of them before I decided that a filter and treatment works just fine. The first one worked fine for a week before failure. The second worked for 3 days. It is a bummer and i hate wasting money.

  20. #20

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    Throw the steripen and sawyer away and get yourself a Katahdan Hiker Pro better than both of those put together.

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