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jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 17:30:08 MST Print View

I'm thinking through a new system (for me) for filtering water. I'd decided on a Steripen with a 1 1/2 liter wide mouth soft water bottle. I want to use this system for easy and quick hydration while moving during the day. Great!

But then I realized that the Sawyer squeeze could work with a soft platy bottle. Having never used a Sawyer I wonder about its flow rate--others have compared it to a Katydyn squeeze bottle. A bit slow, but not a deal breaker. However, I wonder about the small mouth water bottle for filling.

I'm probably over-thinking this. On paper, for my purposes, a wide mouth soft water bottle that fits in my belly pack along with a Steripen, seems less complicated than a small mouth bottle that fills slowly combined with the possibly slow flow of a Sawyer. Also, no gasket problems with the Steripen, which I've read about in Sawyer reviews!

As for the Steripen reliability, an REI employee suggested using one for several days before going out backpacking. The thinking is that bad electronics will show up pretty fast and one could replace the Steripen if it's faulty for a new one or something else. This seems reasonable. You obviously want a good unit.

Again, I want to use this for filtering small amounts (1-2 liters) of clear Sierra water at a time. I'll carry extra batteries if I go with the Steripen.

Thoughts?

Edited by book on 03/01/2013 17:31:31 MST.

michael levi
(M.L) - F

Locale: W-Never Eat Soggy (W)affles
Re on 03/01/2013 17:37:22 MST Print View

The sawyer is hard to beat, it filters muddy water, bugs etc. also can't beat the fact that its simple and doesn't break. Carry a few chlorine tabs in your FAK for backup.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 17:41:35 MST Print View

Both are good

Steripen is complicated electronic gadget more likely to fail, but many people use it successfully. Make sure and take a spare set of new batteries. Don't use rechargeable or bargain brand.

The say not to let Squeeze freeze, which for many people makes it not very uesful. If you go in freezing conditions, you can keep it in your sleeping bag or pocket, but it's so difficult to do this every moment of every trip.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 17:58:17 MST Print View

Steripen reliability.

I agree with the REI rep. Test it out a few times before you go out to the wilds. And maybe bring some chlorine or alternate treatment option with you on your first trip.

I use my Steripen Adventurer for travel trips that last from 2 months to 7 months all around the world -- purifying tap water from hostels and sometimes even from filthy bus station faucets. And all these months of daily usage -- my Steripen has never once failed me . So yes, the odd lemon aside (which hopefully your initial tests will ferret out) -- Steripens are reliable.

Raymond Estrella
(rayestrella) - MLife

Locale: Northern Minnesota
Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 18:40:48 MST Print View

I have both. The SteriPEN is great for clear water. The fastest, easiest way I have ever used to have safe water. But I only want to use it for clean clear water, because even though my brain tells me cloudy, cruddy water is safe my eyes add pictures of dirty diapers and dog droppings in my bottle.

The Squeeze is a great system in the Sierra. It works best in mountains in my experience as there you can find lots of running streams and falling water to fill the bottles with. In lake and pond country it is not so great as you really need another container to scoop water with.

Ian Van Halen
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 18:47:57 MST Print View

Everything Ben said and under similar conditions. Don't have a Sawyer yet (yet) but I do not believe that it will mate with a new Platy due to thread incompatibility (future Dr. Phil episode.) Last Evernew bottle was seen riding away on a unicorn.

I've only had my Adventurer for a year but no problems or surprises yet and I'm still happy with it. I always carry a chemical back up for it like iodine (yes I'm old school), chlor floc or chlorine dioxide.

I've decided not to use the wide mouth soft sided Nalgene due to its reputation for failure near the neck. For the time being, I'm going to use a sacrificed and chopped platy bottle for gathering/sterilizing water with my pen.

David McBride
(VintageGent) - F

Locale: Galveston TX
Re: Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 18:57:42 MST Print View

As someone who's used both, I say go with the Sawyer Squeeze. The flow rate is more than adequate for my purposes. Pair it with one of the Evernew bags instead of the bags that come with it for increased durability.

As for the Steripen, reliability is a big issue. I bought one a couple of years ago. Tested fine at home, but failed on its first outing. It went back to REI.

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
Re: Re: Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 19:04:10 MST Print View

David, even in the last couple of years, Steripen has gotten much better with reliability. Not flawless by any means, but better. And i think some models are inherently more reliable.

Search BPL for "my Steripen adventure". I had a fluke unit.

Edited by T.L. on 03/01/2013 19:08:22 MST.

David McBride
(VintageGent) - F

Locale: Galveston TX
Re: Re: Re: Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 19:37:18 MST Print View

I understand what you're saying, Travis. But this was the same thing people were saying around the time I bought mine. It seems the Steripens are always "getting better."

Rusty Beaver
(rustyb) - F

Locale: Rocky Mountains
I too have had both on 03/01/2013 20:06:18 MST Print View

Once I used my Sawyer, I sold my Steripen....primarily because I don't want to depend on batteries and technology out there. I was also always afraid of damaging it by dropping.

Re the difficulties of filling the Sawyer (or Platy) bag, it has been a non-issue for me. In fact, I find it faster to fill in a lake or pond than it is in a running stream/river. It takes, literally, about two seconds to fill the 1L size bag in a lake. I kneel on a rock, log, or banks edge and make a sweeping arc with the bag just under the surface. I can fill the bag in one arc if standing on a rock out in the water. Otherwise, from the bank, it takes two arcs.

Edited by rustyb on 03/02/2013 09:44:19 MST.

Nick Larsen
(stingray4540) - F

Locale: South Bay
Re: Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 20:22:25 MST Print View

Had a steripen, just got a sawyer.

Steripen takes a long time. I think the sawyer squeeze is actually faster, weighs less, and doesn't have a bulb or electronics to go bad. I always carry spare batteries which adds even more weight. My last outing, the bulb color was different and makes me less confident in its effectiveness.

I haven't used the sawyer in the field yet, but after my experience with the steripen, I am looking forward to the weight savings, ease of use, and seaming reliability.

I'd rather carry a spare gasket than spare batteries...

As far as filling in a lake, just submerged the whole bottle until air bubbles stop coming out. How hard is that? Takes 5 seconds. I do the same in streams.

Edited by stingray4540 on 03/01/2013 20:26:23 MST.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/01/2013 21:10:42 MST Print View

I've been using the Sawyer bags on a number of trips. Haven't had a problem. I do baby them. I've been taking a spare but I think that's unnecesary.

I think I'll take 2 bags each 2 liters in the future. If one of the bags fails it'll be a bit difficult to manage with just one depending on where the water source is. Maybe 3 liters is really all I need.

michael levi
(M.L) - F

Locale: W-Never Eat Soggy (W)affles
Bottle on 03/01/2013 21:27:39 MST Print View

If a sawyer bag fails me I can use my 2nd (backup) Aquafina 1l water bottle because the threads match up.

Nick Larsen
(stingray4540) - F

Locale: South Bay
Re: Bottle on 03/02/2013 00:27:17 MST Print View

I just pitched the sawyer bags all together.
Take two 1L water bottles that fit threadwise. One dirty one, clean. Fill the clean one with the filter from the dirty one, then fill the dirty one. When the clean one's done, fill it back up with the dirty one using the filter, or just drink through the filter directly from the dirty one.

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
"hard" bottles and the squeeze on 03/02/2013 00:41:46 MST Print View

How do the regular plastic water bottles work with the Squeeze? I know they mate well, but as you squeeze water through the filter, is there a weird vacuum effect with the filter? Does it get difficult to get the last bit of water out of the bottle?

Raymond Estrella
(rayestrella) - MLife

Locale: Northern Minnesota
filling squeeze on 03/02/2013 05:28:39 MST Print View

"I haven't used the sawyer in the field yet" "As far as filling in a lake, just submerged the whole bottle until air bubbles stop coming out. How hard is that?"

Why don't you try holding a platy bottle under water in your tub then and let me know how fast it fills up? While a hard-sided bottle will fill fine a soft bag like the Squeeze's or Platys just collapse.

I did not have a lot of luck swirling the bottle around and try hard not to disturb the bottom anyway to keep from having a bunch of crud in the bottle. YMMV

Ian Van Halen
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Sawyer squeeze vs. steripen on 03/02/2013 06:04:50 MST Print View

I will buy a Sawyer for this summer for reasons already mentioned in this thread even though I've never had a problem with my Steripen.

I won't ever sell the SP as I travel overseas often and need to worry about hepatitis and other virus. The Sawyer is fine for much of what I will encounter backpacking in the U.S. with the exception of pesticide runoff which the Steripen cannot remedy either.

John Harper
(johnnyh88) - M

Locale: The SouthWest
Re: Sawyer Squeeze and hard bottles on 03/02/2013 07:58:26 MST Print View

"How do the regular plastic water bottles work with the Squeeze? I know they mate well, but as you squeeze water through the filter, is there a weird vacuum effect with the filter?"

Yes, because there's no place for the air to go, the hard sided bottles end up getting crushed and ultimately stop the flow of water. You could use a hard sided bottle to filter in an emergency, but it would be annoying to have to unscrew the filter to reshape the bottle every couple seconds.

Jetflow has an interesting system that I've been thinking of getting to play with: http://jetflow.com/

They also sell little adapters that would allow you to use one of the wide-mouth Nalgene cantene bladders with the Sawyer Squeeze (which I think would be easier to fill): http://jetflow.com/product-detail/?pid=247http://jetflow.com/product-detail/?pid=247

Kronos Master of Fate
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Sawyer Squeeze and Jetflow on 03/02/2013 08:36:41 MST Print View

I just picked up a set of those adapters from Jetflow. Fit and finish are perfect. Will get a chance to field test next weekend.
Preferring to drink out of a ridgid container and use the collapsable one for storage/camp use.

I have used and still use a Steripen also. The no electronics to fail in the Sawyer have piqued my interest. I was also fortunate to have someone gift me a Sawyer. So why not try it.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: filling squeeze on 03/02/2013 09:22:21 MST Print View

Sometimes my water source is a shallow pool, like I have to excavate it to make it a little deeper.

For this, I need a scooper - a cut-off 1 liter PET soda bottle - about 1/2 ounce.

Since I use this, it doesn't matter whether water container is hard or soft sided, wide or narrow mouth,...