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Rain barrels for drinking

Discussion in 'Preparedness & Survival' started by edison bulb, Mar 25, 2015.

  1. edison bulb

    edison bulb Portland, OR Well-Known Member

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    Does anyone know where these can be purchased locally? Also, what is the best way to treat rainwater so that it is drinkable? I'm thinking 1) boil it and 2) filter through some sort of medium, but not sure what. Thanks :)
     
  2. jbett98

    jbett98 NW Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Look on Craigslist. There's a guy out in Gresham that has a lot of nice ones for only $8.00
    Type in "rain barrels gresham"
     
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  3. Joe13

    Joe13 NW of Vancouver Opinionated & Blunt Bronze Supporter 2015 Volunteer 2016 Volunteer

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    Make sure to float a layer of oil on top to control mesquitos. Neighbor didn't thier first year and I thought I was back in the jungle again...
     
  4. rick benjamin

    rick benjamin USA, Or, Damascus Secure the drama Silver Supporter 2016 Volunteer

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    mmmm protein
     
  5. rick benjamin

    rick benjamin USA, Or, Damascus Secure the drama Silver Supporter 2016 Volunteer

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    I'm considering plumbing for non-potable uses. Toilets, irrigation.
     
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  6. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I'm with Rick on this one. I have rain barrels and I have measures to make the water potable, but that's just as a complete, rod dropped in the sod, last resort! I store water for drinking until that time.
     
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  7. mjbskwim

    mjbskwim Salmon,Idaho Well-Known Member

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    You better watch out,you are on thin ice of suggesting doing something illegal.
    Yes,collecting rain water can be illegal in some places
     
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  8. frauhunter

    frauhunter Central Oregon Member

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    I've looked into this a bit and thus far it seems that the two best practices [regarding potable water] are:

    1> Never store water in something that has been used to store anything else.

    2> Purify by distillation.

    I live in Central Oregon, making a solar still imminently feasible. And yes, do be careful - as the previous poster noted, rain water harvesting is unlawful in some places. Perform your due diligence, and proceed with appropriate caution.

    Ex Gladio Libertas
     
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  9. CoastRange57

    CoastRange57 Western Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    You Central Oregon guys are usually the first ones on the " f the laws" wagon. With your wide open spaces, I would not be worried about rain water harvesting. Pretty simple to set up a "natural drainage" system to collect rainwater in an impoundment .....it is encouraged on the west side to reduce storm water impacts, since the government idiots do not know how to handle it.

    Mini excavator, pond liner, some ADS pipe and the right topography and you can have a pretty substantial pond for a low cost and minimal time.
     
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  10. Sgt Nambu

    Sgt Nambu Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    In PDX we get discounts for catchment and the city will help with storm run off redirection to water landscapes.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2015
  11. frauhunter

    frauhunter Central Oregon Member

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    If I remember correctly, we have about 320 days of sunshine a year with annual precipitation at +/- 11 inches (less then 25% of Portland, about one sixth of North Bend). The one thing everyone seems to notice on their first trip to the desert is the lack of humidity. Below freezing temperatures are not unusual between Nov and May. We have lizards, snakes, creepy crawlies of all variety, partridge, several varieties of hawks, eagles, crows, feral cats and dogs, my domestic cat and dog, two different types of rabbit, coyotes, and deer - and that's just what has come up to my front door to introduce itself. We also have cougar, but they seem to be rather unsocial types and I've never seen one or any sign of one - but I'm hardly an expert on the latter.

    I mention this simply to point out that any water I did manage to collect in a pond would probably suffer greater loss from evaporation then use [under normal circumstances], and that in an area lacking in surface water any pond is going to attract all the aforementioned critters, their feces, and whatever plague is currently in vogue with the animal kingdom. Of course, all of this will be offset by the joy of witnessing first hand the circle of life as it floats face down in what, by this time, used to be my back up water supply... :)

    Something I am exploring is a cistern system - which is basically your pond idea with a critter abatement system (roof) installed. Oddly, not as simple as it seems if the goal is potable water - or the option to make it so.

    In the last 25 years, I have lived in Portland, North Bend, Vancouver, and now here. One of the things that I've noticed is that petty bureaucrats are becoming more petty and more bureaucratic. I don't mind feral and bold in my women, but it gets old finding it in my Civil Servants... :eek: Over time, and lately on an accelerated basis, they seem to have adopted the attitude that The People are here to serve The Law instead of the other way around. IMHO, there are some people out there who would gladly destroy your life for the heinous crime of capturing water in a barrel. Imagine what they'd do if you killed the Kings deer. Thus my cautionary note.

    Ex Gladio Libertas
     
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  12. forefathersrback

    forefathersrback Central Oregon Well-Known Member

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    Sorry my second amendment Central Oregon brother. Sounds like you live in Bend. Think about moving. Only a few miles, north,south,or east, you'll be fine.
     
  13. frauhunter

    frauhunter Central Oregon Member

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    Noppers, not Bend. We did look there, but decided that it was a bit to Kalifornia for our tastes so we settled further north. We're actually quite happy with the area. I rather like the abundance and variety of the wildlife, and finding it wandering around my front yard is to me a little slice of heaven.

    Water, however, could be a real problem. Thus my interest in this particular topic.

    Ex Gladio Libertas
     
  14. CoastRange57

    CoastRange57 Western Oregon Bronze Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    I can understand the need for ground water aquifer recharges, but prohibiting rain water collection seems a bit extreme. I visualize a nice shop or barn roof with gutters, and the gutters running from that to my catchment system inside the building. Set up on racks so that I could gravity feed it into containers, or even hard plumbed to supply a pump system, probably an ozoninator purification.

    .5 inch of rain on a 1800 square foot roof equals 623 gallons. Even with the low precipitation rates over there you should still be able to collect and store quite a bit.

    This is a bit crude drawing I found, but the idea is the same. I would use one or several of the white poly ag container. I would use multiple units in case of a problem with one you have some redundancy built in.

    rainbarrel.jpg
     
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  15. frauhunter

    frauhunter Central Oregon Member

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    So I did a little looking. Entire matter appears to center around Water Rights, the core issue of any number of excellent westerns. Some things never change... It appears that Oregon allows harvesting from a '...permanent and impervious...' surface [such as a roof], but does not allow run off water to be diverted or captured. This would kill the pond idea, unless I wanted to beg the Minions of the Cattle Barons in Salem for water rights to my own land (undoubtedly in the form of an expensive, renewable, permit). Perhaps 'Campaign Contributions' would help... ;)

    We're lucky - if you thumb through the links you'll see that it's worse elsewhere. The imbedded videos are interesting, if sensationalized, partisan, and in some cases lengthily. My cautionary note to the OP stands.

    http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2012...nwater-in-illegal-reservoirs-on-his-property/

    http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/environment/a11758/4314447/

    http://www.naturalnews.com/029286_rainwater_collection_water.html

    http://www.naturalnews.com/037040_rainwater_collection_criminalization_video.html

    Pretty much what I've got in mind for the above ground portion of the catchment system. Current wisdom holds that overflow would be shunted off to a cistern.

    You're right about collection here - even with only 11 inches per year of precipitation I'm looking at a harvest potential in the neighborhood of 4500 gallons just using my roof. The problem is the curve, with the bulk of this precipitation falling Nov - Feb. The only thing that falls here in the summer is dust... o_O What I collect in that time would have to get me thru to the next winter - thus adequate physical storage is a major consideration.

    Just for a little perspective, from what Ive gathered so far the average household uses 100 gallons of water Per Person Per Day (PPPD). My guess is our habits will have to change a bit under survival conditions. Most sources I've seen suggest 1 gallon of potable water PPPD. Nutnfancy suggests 1.5 gallons. I agree with the later, meaning that to survive one year would require 548 gallons of potable water per person. Anybody got eight kids? :eek:

    Quick calculations will show that while having enough barrels to store this kind of volume is possible, practical experience living in these conditions will soon lead us to conclude that we don't want to dip into the potable supply to re-prime our toilets, bathe, wash cloths, etc. Thus the need for grey water.

    This is how I calculate harvest potential:

    CA = Collection Area (in square feet)
    AR = Annual Rainfall (in inches)
    CE = Collection Efficiency (as a percentage)
    CF = Cubic Feet (12 - returns cubic feet)
    GY = Gallons per Year (7.43 - annual harvest in gallons)

    (CA x AR) x CE
    ----------------- x GY
    ..........CF

    Collection Efficiency is about how much of what actually falls into your collection system stays collected - for example, a heavy rainfall could overflow your gutters rendering CE at less then 100% as can leakage or evaporation. I use 50% as my working CE.

    BTW: I'm not the math guy. If anybody sees an errror in the equation please let me know.

    Ex Gladio Libertas