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Survival Gear Review: The Platypus GravityWorks 2.0L Water Filter

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May 30, 2014
Survival Gear Review: The Platypus GravityWorks 2.0L Water Filter - 1

Platypus gets it. You can’t last very long without water. That’s why they’ve been making water supply products for years. I still have two of the original 1-liter Platypus collapsible water bags. I thought they’d last a few months, at the most. The plastic seemed kind of crunchy, like it would crack at the corners. But they’re both still holding water 15 years later. How does Platypus’ new GravityWorks 2.0L water filter perform? Let me pour you a drink and I’ll tell you all about it.

Right out of the box, the operation of this small, light-weight kit was obvious. Fill the bag marked “dirty” with your raw water, connect the hoses and filter with the flow indicator arrow pointing toward your “clean” bottle, and let gravity do the rest. I don’t know why, but I was expecting a slow drip like an IV bag. Instead, water gushed from the hose into the “clean” bottle. To maintain that level of performance, the system is easily back-flushed for maintenance by placing your clean vessel up and the dirty bag down.

In testing, I first filtered some clear stream water, which tasted great and came out cold. Then I tried some green-looking pond water. It tasted better than I expected it to, but I can see the need to purchase the Platypus carbon filter as an add-on, especially in areas with foul-tasting surface water. This extra filter ($13) can be easily added in line with the existing system.

Here’s what I liked about the GravityWorks system.
- It’s simple. Just hang up the dirty water bag, no pumping needed.
- It’s fast, filtering more than a quart per minute.
- It’s compact. All the gear tucks into the included nylon pouch, which is only 6 inches by 10 inches and quite thin.
- It’s lightweight. The bottle kit I purchased is only 9.5 ounces.
- It meets all EPA and NSF guidelines for the removal of bacteria and protozoa. This includes the removal of 99.9 percent of giardia, cryptosporidium, e. coli, salmonella, and cholera.
- The in-line clip allows you to stop the flow, effectively giving you clean running water on demand.
- It’s made in the USA.

Another handy feature is the Universal Bottle Adapter. This multi-sized lid piece connects with a wide range of containers, including products made by Platypus, MSR, Nalgene, Kleen Kanteen, Camelbak, and others.

What didn’t I like about it? Nothing, really. The MSRP of $109.95 seems high to me, but I can’t complain too much, as I picked mine up at REI’s annual sale for $69.95. No whining here.

Have you used this water filter? If not, which do you use? Tell us your thoughts in the comments.

 

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from jcarlin 5/30/2014 at 12:09pm

I haven't used this one, but it sounds like a performer. I do wonder how flow rate holds up with turbid water and with the carbon filter added on.
I've been very happy with the MSR mini-works I purchased about 10 years ago, and used just a couple of weekends ago. It's pump operated, has a ceramic filter with a carbon core, and is compact and light, mounts directly onto a wide-mouth water bottle, and is field maintainable. Probably a little bulkier than a gravity model, but I've put some nasty thick water through there that I wouldn't want my hand in when it was the only option. Element can be pulled, scrubbed, rinsed and reinserted in moments, and that can be performed I don't recall how many hundreds of times. In relatively clear water, maintenance free. In thick swampy water, will require a scrubbing every quart or so to keep flow up. Been 10 years and I'm still not in the market for a new filter.

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from jcarlin 5/30/2014 at 12:09pm

I haven't used this one, but it sounds like a performer. I do wonder how flow rate holds up with turbid water and with the carbon filter added on.
I've been very happy with the MSR mini-works I purchased about 10 years ago, and used just a couple of weekends ago. It's pump operated, has a ceramic filter with a carbon core, and is compact and light, mounts directly onto a wide-mouth water bottle, and is field maintainable. Probably a little bulkier than a gravity model, but I've put some nasty thick water through there that I wouldn't want my hand in when it was the only option. Element can be pulled, scrubbed, rinsed and reinserted in moments, and that can be performed I don't recall how many hundreds of times. In relatively clear water, maintenance free. In thick swampy water, will require a scrubbing every quart or so to keep flow up. Been 10 years and I'm still not in the market for a new filter.

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