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I just wanted to pass on some information. I just purchased a Berkey water purifying system and I love it. I have been doing my homework and after about 6 months I decided to go with the Berkey system. I bought the crown which is stainless steel and has the ability to purify up to 24,000 gallons of water. I also did my homework on where to buy one and decided to buy from Home. I found this site to be very informative and they were very helpful. If you have ever considered the berkey you should check out this site. I hope this helps.
 

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performing monkey
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yeah, Berkey is probably the best for the money of the larger filters, but I'm a Katadyn fan for the more portable models...

for emergencies the Aquamira Frontier (pro?) Personal Survival Water Filter Straw can be had for $10, fits in a shirt pocket, has a 2micron filter and is rated to filter 50 gallons (just think how much easier some of those 'survival' shows would be with one of those :) )
 

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I lived in NorthEast India/Himalayas for years and we used the large expedition sized Katadyn filter for our water needs, I had friends send in from the States, several big bags of the largest paper filters for coffee makers. I used 2-perforated drainers with the filter papers in the bottom of each drainer, this really helped with straining out larger solids. I couldn't prove it but I'll bet money that a number of 'undesirables' were captured in the straining process, our ceramic filter media definitely lasted longer. Also the drainers were stainless-steel, to help inhibit bacterial growth. I never caught 'Delhi belly' but I did get Malaria-2X, and Dengue fever-1X, but all the time in-country I was Giardia/Cryptospordia free.
 

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www.veggear.blogspot.com
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Here's my Berkey Black filter. I picked up the elements in bulk to get a discount, so I have about $60 into it.
 

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I have the Little Berkey (3 sports bottles free), alum, coffee filters, and pool shock(calcium hypochlorite/not sodium hyp) and hope I'm ready.
 
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