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Sawyer Squeeze "grafity filter" bag recommendations
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Jeff McWilliams
(jjmcwill) - M

Locale: Midwest
Sawyer Squeeze "grafity filter" bag recommendations on 07/17/2013 11:28:56 MDT Print View

In four weeks, I'm leading a group of 8 people on a trip to the southern Winds of Wyoming (Big Sandy, Pyramid Lake, Shadow Lake, Cirque of the Towers...) for 6 days.

We aren't all UL, but many of us are working on going lighter.

For example, my wife and I will be using the Hexamid twin with netting and a polycryo ground cloth. We had it out in the Adirondacks last year with a Tyvek cloth, so I'm just to the point of tweaking things.

We're taking 3 Jetboil stoves for the group: One Jetboil Flash, one Sol, and one Sol Ti. This just happens to be what various people in the group own without purchasing additional equipment.

For water filtration, I couldn't get them convinced that we could use chlorine dioxide, so we're using filters. We're bringing two Sawyer squeeze filters, and one Platypus Gravityworks filter.

The Squeeze filters will work great for topping off bottles on the trail, but I thought it would be nice to set up my Squeeze as a 2nd gravity filter for in camp. I have the barbed adapters and some tubing. I have a 2L Evernew bag in addition to the Squeeze bags. However, I thought it would be nice to have a larger capacity bag than 2L, like 3 or 4L. I can't find any 4L lightweight reservoir bags sold separately, except for the MSR Dromlite, which seems heavy at 5.1oz for 4L without the hose attachment sold separately. The Platypus Big Zip is 3L, but also pretty heavy at 5.8oz, probably due to that big plastic clip used to seal the top. The 3L Platypus Hoser is a possibility at 3.8oz including the hose and bite valve. I would probably have to fill it using my soda-bottle scoop just like I do with my Evernew 2L bag.

Are there other options I'm missing?



Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Sawyer Squeeze "grafity filter" bag recommendations on 07/17/2013 12:10:13 MDT Print View


I use my Sawyer filter (pre-squeeze model) as a gravity filter in camp.

I would recommend that you take a look at the Platypus Water Tanks.

I carry a 4L water tank, which I think is 3.5 to 4.0 oz.

This is my one luxury item that I carry, which I find makes like in camp nice bacause it provides water for my friends and I for the whole night or for myself at night and for the morning.

They are great in that they have a zip top that allows for quick dunks in the water and it does have handles for easy carrying.

Only negative is that in cold weather, with wet hands it can be a challenge to zip the top closed.

Pretty strong closure, but if I had to carry water in it in my would make me nervous. (I would only do this if I was dry camping overnight, which is rare for me).

Hope that helps.


Jeff McWilliams
(jjmcwill) - M

Locale: Midwest
Platypus Water Tank on 07/17/2013 12:26:39 MDT Print View


How do you set up the Water Tank as a gravity filter? The ones I see (at for example) have the threaded cap up high on one side.

It's not apparent to me how you would hang the tank (from the carry handle), and still set a gravity feed going with that cap being up so high.

Feeling dense,


Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Platypus Water Tank on 07/17/2013 12:54:33 MDT Print View


You are not dense at all.

My setup is older and has discontinued parts from Platypus.

If you look for a user review of the Sawyer filter on BPL, I have pictures of my setup.

However, as you are using the newer will require some tweeking.

Option 1

Simply screw on the filter to the water tank and see how the flow is with that.

Not idea, but might work....otherwise, you are pushing on the bag.

I no longer hang my bag from a tree....I simply lay it sideways on a rock, fallen tree...anything elevated.

You could see about attaching a tube to the output part/sport bottle top portion of the Squeeze filter and have that tube go to a catch bottle/pot.

If you have platypus hydration system, you could see about removing the bite piece and plugging that into the output of the Squeeze Filter (I am assuming that you can remove the sport bottle top and that there is a nipple there that allows you to connect a tube to) and then have the clean water flow into your hydration system or unscrew the tubing from they hydration bag and then screw it on to a bottle of your choice with the same threads.

This is less than ideal because there is no tubing between the dirty bag and the filter, which creates pressure to push the water through the filter.

Option 2

Alternatively, take the platypus hydration tubing and screw it onto the water tank....remove the bite tube and then plug the tubing into the input end of the Sawyer filter...again, tubing leading from the output to carry your clean water to a container.

Sorry if this seems complicated, but if you look at these "instructions" after seeing the pictures of how my setup is, I think it should make sense.


Edited by Valshar on 07/17/2013 12:55:40 MDT.

Brian Johns

Locale: NorCal
Sawyer 3-in-1 on 07/17/2013 17:08:35 MDT Print View

I purchased the Sawyer 3-in-1 in-line filter I think it's called off of Amazon. It has a .1 micron filter light the squeeze but works either in-line between your platy-style bag and a drinking mouth piece, or gravity style for in camp. I use the Platypus bags and they fit pretty well. I've heard that the evernew bags have a better fit though. Mine is between an old ULA silnylon "parachute" and a platy 2L bag. Works great. After a few dozen gallons it's a little slower but will still do a couple of litres in 5-10 minutes. Haven't time it. I just occupy myself and in a bit the bag is full. Great set up, though I'm thinking of trying the squeeze model next year/this Winter.

James Castleberry
Sawyer comments on 07/17/2013 20:23:47 MDT Print View

Consider the 70oz. Platy (not the hoser) at 1.3 oz, get two if necessary.
When flushing the Sawyer, after shooting the water thru, shake the filter down vigorously to force any gunk out. I was surprised how much gunk came out into the sink when I did that. After about the third or fourth flush like that, no more gunk came out upon shaking. Haven't seen any mention of that and may help alleviate clogging. Otherwise, love the Sawyer.

steven franchuk
consider the Nalgene Cantene on 07/18/2013 00:34:05 MDT Print View

You might want to look at the Nalgene Cantene They have a 96 fluid oz version that weighs 2.25 oz according to the REI web site. Replace the nalgene lid with with the Dromlite lid (same weight) and attache the MSR hydration kit 2.4oz to the dromlite lid. Thats 4.65oz total (if the weights I am getting from web sites are correct.

You might be able to save a little weight by replacing the MSR tubing with thin wall tubing (1/4" inner diameter, 1/32" wall thickness, 0.7grams per inch) which is about half the weight of the MSR tubing. The 43 inches of hose in the MSR hydration kit will weigh about 2oz verses 1oz for the thin wall tubing. Pushing the total weight down to about 3.65oz. I just purchest some to try out this year ( item 5114k54).

Edited by Surf on 07/18/2013 00:39:03 MDT.

Jeff McWilliams
(jjmcwill) - M

Locale: Midwest
Nalgene Cantene on 07/18/2013 07:52:23 MDT Print View

Excellent tips!

I just happen to have a 96oz Nalgene Cantene. Slightly older style with the big circular grommet / finger loop off to one side of the spout.

I may see if I can put a plastic grommet into each of the two welded corners for hanging, and use the MSR DromLite hose adapter that Steven mentions.

Tony - I enjoyed reading the other thread at the link you posted. You seem to be a pioneer in the use of the earlier Sawyer filters. It's interesting to see how they have refined the product and expanded its market since then.


Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Nalgene Cantene on 07/18/2013 12:15:08 MDT Print View


Thanks...more that I just posted up the results of my research from back then.

When I first looked into gravity filters there was very little information that I could find online.

So I just put together a review and instructions with photos of how to put together the system that worked for me.

I have been thrilled to see the evolution of the Sawyer filter.

In particular, I am pretty excited about the Sawyer Mini filter that is coming out shortly.

I would like to replace mine, which is working fine, with the new one so I can just screw it onto my dirty water bag.....convience more than anything.

Sounds like you are set with the advice that the others have given you...gotta love the BPL community to help with any problem that you have.

Have a good trip.


Jeff McWilliams
(jjmcwill) - M

Locale: Midwest
Nalgene Cantene gravity bag on 07/18/2013 18:42:49 MDT Print View

Nalgene Cantene

I ran to the hardware store for brass grommets, and the local REI for the MSR hose adapter for my Nalgene Cantene as Steve suggested. I have lighter weight tubing on the way from

So far, I'm liking this setup!

steven franchuk
Re: Nalgene Cantene gravity bag on 07/18/2013 20:28:29 MDT Print View

I should have noted the thin wall tubing I have is being used on and inline filter setup. I am running the thin wall tubing from the filter to the bite valve. I am using 4 inches of regular tubing between the filter and bladder. I never tried getting the thin wall tubing on the lid barb which is larger

Getting the bite valve on the thin wall tubing is challenging. Dipping the barb on the bite valve in water helps as long as you keep your hands and the outside of the tubing dry.

The barb on the lid has a larger diameter than the bite valve. Wetting the lid barb may not work. You can try heating the tubing with a hot air gun (my hot air gun on low only needs about 20 seconds to soften it). Another option is to leave the MSR tubing on the lid and then cut it a couple of inches away and use a conventionally sized 1/4" hose to hose barb to transition to the thin wall tubing. Most hardware stores have some hose to hose barbs in the drip irigation section or in the plumbing department.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Nalgene Cantene gravity bag on 07/18/2013 21:14:18 MDT Print View

FWIW There is a Sawyer compatible lid for the Nalgene


Paul McLaughlin
(paul) - MLife
Re: Sawyer Squeeze "grafity filter" bag recommendations on 07/19/2013 13:53:07 MDT Print View

I am pondering the same question. I have a 4L Dromlite, which weighs 3.6 oz (mine is old style, does not have the "handle" at the neck). I'm leaning toward using that, mainly because I will then have a container I can use reliably in the pack if I want to camp where there is no water (I like to camp on ridges and peaks sometimes).

Mark Verber
(verber) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Sawyer Squeeze "grafity filter" bag recommendations on 07/19/2013 14:33:53 MDT Print View

My system with a group is that I have a Platypus BigZip 3L which I use during the day with only clean water and for topping off things during the hike we use the provide sawyer's squeeze bottle. Evening camp I will use my Platypus for dirty water source for a gravity system and have it feed into the 4L Platypus Water Tank which opens on the top and self stands. Before going to bed I fill my 3L with dirty water and drop the chemicals in to purify over night. In the morning the chemically treated water is used for meals where we don't notice the flavor, and the water accumulated in the Water Tank(s) the previous evening is used to top off people's water bottles.


Ross Bleakney
(rossbleakney) - MLife

Locale: Cascades
Re: Sawyer Squeeze "grafity filter" bag recommendations on 07/21/2013 10:41:40 MDT Print View

I use a Sawyer Squeeze with a Tornado Tube and a Platypus as my drip system. If you search the web for "tornado tube sawyer filter" you will probably find a lot of explanations. Here is mine:

1) Put a couple of holes on the bottom of a Sawyer bag. Attach some cord and you can now turn the bag upside down. This works; the bag doesn't rip with a couple of holes in it.

2) By a Tornado Tube. This is a kids toy.

3) Adapt the Tornado Tube in a couple of ways. First, you will need to cut off the ends of the tube. The tube is meant to fit soda pop bottles, not water bottles. The threads match a filter, but they are too short. You can cut off the ends of the tube using a hack saw. You will also want to expand the hole that the water will flow through. I used a drill.

You now have a very lightweight drip system. One big advantage of this system is that you don't have to worry about the weight of the clean water container. Plastic tubing works fine, but the clean water container has to sit on the ground. It can't be suspended by the filter or the tubing will pop off. However, this isn't a problem with the Tornado Tube.

Jeff McWilliams
(jjmcwill) - M

Locale: Midwest
Tubing on 07/22/2013 05:04:54 MDT Print View

Steven - My thin-wall tubing arrived. You are right that it was impossible to get it to mate with the barbed connector on wide-mouthed MSR lid. For now, I am keeping the MSR thick-walled tubing between the 96oz Nalgene Cantene and the Sawyer. I did shorten it some. I am using the thin walled tubing from the clean output side of the Sawyer to whatever clean water bottle is collecting the water.

It works well enough.

3 1/2 weeks until my trip, so I'll stick with this for now and focus on other gear prep items on my to-do list.

Bill Law
(williamlaw) - M

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: Sawyer Squeeze "grafity filter" bag recommendations on 07/24/2013 10:21:19 MDT Print View

I just had my third Nalgene Cantene failure this past weekend. The first two I used for some time before they sprung leaks. The last one didn't really get that much use. The plastic seemed a bit too stiff and suffers from " plastic" fatigue, or something. I have a Platypus bag and time will tell if that will hold up better. I'm also going to try to get an Evernew bag to see how that works. Just my $.02.

Jeff McWilliams
(jjmcwill) - M

Locale: Midwest
Failed Nalgene Cantene on 07/24/2013 10:57:07 MDT Print View


Thanks for the "heads up". Were you using them to squeeze water through the Sawyer Squeeze, as a gravity filter bag, or for storage?

I'm just wondering if mine might last longer if used "gently" or it that made no difference.


Bill Law
(williamlaw) - M

Locale: SF Bay Area
Re: Failed Nalgene Cantene on 07/26/2013 23:26:04 MDT Print View

Not used with the filter, just for water transport and storage, mostly overnight at camp. Sometimes I would fill with air and use them as a pillow.

I commented here (in a gear review) after the first two sprung leaks that I wasn't really complaining as I got much use out of them before they gave out.

I do really like the wide mouth and may try another, if I can pick one up cheap enough. I won't have that be my sole container, however.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Failed Nalgene Cantene on 07/27/2013 08:29:30 MDT Print View

Did Nalgenes show signs of wear before failure?

I've had a couple Platypuses that yellowed and started delaminating so I quit using before failure. Over about a year they got gradually worse.