The Grayl vs MSR MiniWorks

Discussion in 'Gear' started by Mike Jones, Apr 26, 2016.

  1. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Member

    Messages:
    102
    Location:
    Carlsbad, California
    I saw the recent post about the MSR Guardian (Super expensive water filter). I currentley have the MSR MiniWorks although I need to buy a new ceramic filter replacement for the inside before my next trip to the High Sierra Trail to Mt Whitney in June.

    I recently stumbled upon the GRAYL ultra light and it has perked my interest, and I wanted to know your thoughts. I am deciding which one to bring on my trip, either get a new filter for my MSR or buy the GRAYL.

    It looks like the GRAYL has better filtering, it can filter Viruses, which I do not believe my MSR can?

    What are your thoughts on these two systems?
     
  2. Nick

    Nick Post 'em if you got 'em!

    Messages:
    11,360
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    None of the above. Mini Works is outdated and no longer competitive with other options. Grayl looks a gimmicky POS that is not intended for serious outdoor use. I mean, the filter is only rated to clean 40 gallons of water and then you have to replace it? I'm a big fan of gravity lately (MSR AutoFlow or Platypus equiv), then steripen, then First Needs XLE (for when the water is nasty). This thread has great info on all the options: http://backcountrypost.com/threads/water-filters.9/
     
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  3. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Member

    Messages:
    102
    Location:
    Carlsbad, California
    I realize it only does 40 gallons, but how is it not intended for seriouse outdoor use, it can filter out viruses, bacteria, protozoa. A lot of th ebig names cant filter out viruses.
     
  4. Nick

    Nick Post 'em if you got 'em!

    Messages:
    11,360
    Location:
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    You don't need to filter out viruses for 99.9% of the outdoor use most people use it for in the United States. If you're traveling abroad, it's a whole different story, but if that were the case, I especially wouldn't trust that thing. At least not without a stack of extra filters, and then it's back to there being much better options that still knock out viruses (like the First Needs XLE).

    Ultimately, there are just far better options out there. A gravity filter kit weighs the same, lasts much longer and you fill it and kick back and relax.
     
  5. Blake Merrell

    Blake Merrell Member

    Messages:
    550
    Location:
    Spanish Fork, Ut
    Sawyer Mini!!!
     
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  6. Bob

    Bob Trailmaster

    Messages:
    1,834
    Location:
    NUtah
    Aquamira tabs.......If I carry a filter its the Katadyn Hiker Pro.

    Gravity filters work great when in camp....but not while you are moving........
    Not sold on the steripen....... just because of the mechanics...battery, bulb, dirty water questions....
     
  7. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Member

    Messages:
    102
    Location:
    Carlsbad, California
    How does that compare to my MSR MiniWorks
     
  8. Bob

    Bob Trailmaster

    Messages:
    1,834
    Location:
    NUtah
    I have no idea.....sorry.
     
  9. slc_dan

    slc_dan Desert Rat-Weekend Warrior

    Messages:
    1,281
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    let gravity do the work. I've used a Platypus for 5 years and have zero want for something else.
     
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  10. BillG

    BillG New Member

    It looks to me like it would be very difficult to avoid cross contamination with the Grayl purifier. Your hands are all over the thing while you are filling and filtering the water and then you drink from it.
     
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  11. slc_dan

    slc_dan Desert Rat-Weekend Warrior

    Messages:
    1,281
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    I think the biggest sticking point is it only filters 40 gallons! Then you have to replace it with another $40 filter.

    Platypus/MSR/Sawyer will filter 1500 liters at least.
     
    Mike Jones likes this.
  12. slc_dan

    slc_dan Desert Rat-Weekend Warrior

    Messages:
    1,281
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
     
  13. WobbleKnee

    WobbleKnee New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Full disclosure - I'm a GRAYL co-founder *Biased*

    Great conversation, love the feedback, lots of very high quality water filters out there. Here's my story:

    I love mountain bike camping - 3 or 4 of us, 30-40 miles per day, 3 or 4 days out, you can see a lot of country. For water last year, we packed Camelbaks, 2 GRAYLs, 1 Platypus Gravity. On the trail to re-fill everybody's Camelbaks, GRAYL's a no-brainer. Nothing is faster from backpack to drink, nothing. Fill everybody's pack, gulp down one last bottle and off again.

    When we get to camp, break out the Gravity. All the time in the world, fill up the bags while you're sippin' on whiskey.

    Point is - different purifiers for different situations. But for 1-2 people moving fast, GRAYL deserves consideration.
     
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  14. Bob

    Bob Trailmaster

    Messages:
    1,834
    Location:
    NUtah
    Looks good for certain uses.......not me though. I run multiple Platy's on long trips, don't need another "can" to take up space. Also use Aquamira....another space saver. Try to keep weight and bulk down......
     
  15. WobbleKnee

    WobbleKnee New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Fair enough, Bob - sounds like you have your H2O figured out.

    But next time you're out on the trail, time how long it takes you to get water from the river to your mouth. Bet you can't do it this fast.

    Happy trails!

     
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  16. Blake Merrell

    Blake Merrell Member

    Messages:
    550
    Location:
    Spanish Fork, Ut
    Pretty slick! I can see this being great for long distant outdoor races.
     
  17. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Member

    Messages:
    102
    Location:
    Carlsbad, California
    So I just got back from a 6 day test, putting the Grayl through its paces. My trip report and pictures are over in this post. The bottom line with the Grayl is that I dont unfortunately recommend it. It worked great in the begining, but the more and more I used it the harder it became to press.

    Using the Grayl for two people over just 6 days, it became painful to use. I ended up using my Ka-bar to place on top to have a flatter surface to push down on and make it a little less painful to use. If you have any specific questions on it, let me know. A little more detailed review can be read on my blog.

    [​IMG]
     
  18. Jackson

    Jackson I like to go outside.

    Messages:
    715
    Location:
    Salt Lake City
    I like that you carry a Ka-Bar backpacking. I should take mine with me more often. Sorry the filter is a bust, though.
     
  19. cookiedough

    cookiedough New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Some good points above. I have the Sawyer Squeeze and a MiniWorks. Like the Squeeze for simplicity and use, am looking at the gravity.

    That said, none of the ones listed take care of alkali water - such as found in the Glen Canyon Rec Area. A number of Hayduke thru-hikers have complained of stomach issues. The "electroadsorptive media" talks about removing inorganic compounds, which makes me think -water softener media. Which would remove the salts present in the Dirty Devil, Escalante, Paria, Colorado et al Rivers.

    Has anyone been through that area with one of the Grayls? WobbleKnee - do you have any comments for those types of conditions?

    Any info would help, and if I end up using REI dividend on one I'll report back as well.
     
  20. Dr Nebz

    Dr Nebz Dirtbag After Dark

    Messages:
    144
    Location:
    Wasatch Range
    I currently use the Platypus Gravity Works filter. After trying it backpacking with a friend who bought a similar gravity filter, I was sold. You have water on tap in camp, so less trips to filter, and no pumping. After you have done 10 miles on trail, it is nice to just dip the bag, hang it, and let gravity do the work for you. I sold my MSR Sweetwater and have no regrets doing so.

    I can see how those who are needing to filter along the way on the trail need a different option. But I usually have 24 oz of H2O in the pack when I start in to any area, and have rarely ran out before I get to camp, so it has not been an issue for me.