Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by PapaGrune, Mar 2, 2014.
This Brilliant Water Filter Made From A Tree Branch Could Help Millions Of People
good to know. I could rig up a large funnel from a 5 gallon carboid easily enough, use a fairly long hose, for greater pressure, and make a cheap, easy filter for very litle cost.
I posted this response on the Bushcraft USA forum and I'll repost it here...
This sounds like a good way to die covered in your own feces. Boil, filter or chemically disinfect if at all possible. I had crypto once and would not wish it on my worst enemy. Think back to your worst case of the flu and add the worst case of the shits ever; that's crypto.
No way you can even take care of yourself let alone move out of harms way. I ended up in the ER getting 3 bags of saline through a IV before it was over. I caught it from a municipal water source that was not up to snuff. Drinking the water in 3rd world countries is a fast and ugly way to die.
I find it hard to "like" that.
I like the point @whynot made..... better to do it right than to take a chance you may pay dearly for.
Just.a fyi read.. You practice what you have researched and know work's. As I said, interesting read. I got something from our small town. Water. Thr MIL and I both had to switch to bottled water for 6 months until the rural water supply fixed what was wrong, but nothing was wrong. Strong chlorine smell and they started flushing the pipeline regularly.
sent from inside the fire tornado
I'm going to play devil's advocate here. I completely and totally agree with Whynot's opinion on the matter, BUT, after taking microbiology last semester I can see how this system works and it is THEORETICALLY sound.
The Cryptosporidium protozoa is not a bacteria, but instead is classified as a protozoa- a microscopic animal (whereas bacteria is actually microscopic plants) that gets by our intense stomach acid defenses because they form cysts. Cysts are like a tough covering that protects the protozoa while it is dormant. They can float around like that almost indefinitely until they encounter conditions that allow them to regrow back into their trophozoid form- the cryptosporidium protozoa. This will usually happen in the small intestine. The little ba$tards then attack and eat your epithelial tissue (thin interior lining) and create havoc- hence the diarrhea that your body creates to try to flush them away.
Due to the nature of the protozoan, they are very similar in genetic makeup to us (more so than bacteria, because they are plants) because we are both animals, antibiotics will have no effect whatsoever. Your immune system must be up to snuff to get rid of it.
The crux of the argument- the pine branch filter was tested to a particulate size of 70 nanometers. The protozoan Cryptosporidium are actually rather big (even in the cyst form) and are MUCH larger than bacteria. The average Cryptosporidium is 4000 nanometers in diameter, and in no way would be able to fit through the xylem columns.
NOT to say that nature can't find a way to kill you! This filter would have no effect on viruses. All viruses could theoretically sail right on through this filter medium! Remember, many viruses can protect themselves by becoming spores similar to cysts, and extremely hard to kill. Only boiling or autoclave will get rid of them.
I think the handling process with this type of filter will have to be very precise. If you mess up and use the dirty water tube the next day instead of using the clean water tube, you will have a very good possibility of getting something through and contaminating your water. This would be through human error, not from the filter itself.
I would only use fresh branches and only use it for one day. Cut and use it, not cut and store for later use. The xylem cells that make up the columns won't last long without nutrients. How long? I don't know, and I wouldn't want to test it to find out. I would use it and toss it, making sure the clean water tube and affiliated equipment (clamp, bottle, or bladder) do NOT come in physical contact with the dirty water equipment OR my hands after handling them.
I think soap would be a good thing to have! Keep it clean.
Since we know that certain wood is capable of filtering down to 70 nanometers, just look up the sizes of certain local bacteria and protozoa to see if they are small enough to pass through. Then you look up the individual bacteria's ID50 to see how many of the little microbes are needed to make you sick.
Some bacteria only take ONE individual bacteria organism to make you sick, others require a bunch. Each one reacts with the human body in a different way. 98% of naturally found bacteria is not physically equipped to attack the human body, but the few that do are nasty.
Again, I am not trying to make light of the situation. I'm just trying to explain the science behind the findings. And yes, I do now plan to try a test run. I'll talk with some of my professors to see where I can get dye with a definite sized particles to experiment. Not all wood is the same, and wood from the same tree may not be up to snuff. A green branch with no dry areas or cracks is where I would start.
I put this out, as a Reference Point.... Alaskachick (Momma) is a Team Member, and now Staff, with a Dr's w/o Boarders. Her team goes to Africa every other Year. She also Teaches, groups of volunteers, that are being formed into Teams, at their Training Site, In New York State. One of the very FIRST Training Sessions, is how to use a Berkey Water Filter System. This is the ONE MANDATORY System, that gets deployed with EVERY Team. It can turn, the most contaminated Swamp Water, into Drinkable Water. It just doesn't work, if the Health Pros are to sick, to help the folks they were sent to Help. Also doesn't endear confidence with the locals. I wouldn't trust anything else, with my Drinking Water, If I was in an UnKnown, or unfamiliar location. ..... YMMV....
I don't think anyone is proposing this method as the preferred water filter, where options are available. But as a survival technique, I think it has merit. It's another one of those tips to tuck away in the back of your mind for use in extremis. I think most of us have known that we could draw water out of a grape vine, or many hardwood trees, in a survival situation. That water is safe to drink because of the plants' natural ability to filter out contaminants. This filter, it seems to me, is just an example of that ability.
That link doesn't work for me so here's what I had to do, just copy this phrase, and google search is,
since I am new here, linking directly would not work, but you can get the info anyway.
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