View Full Version : Engine driven watermaker

14th October 2008, 09:32 AM
For my A57 I chose to install an engine driven watermaker from echotec:


i bought the 60 gallon/hr version for the following reasons:

- very good weight/capacity rate
- automatic pressure regulating valve, that ensures constant pressure on changing engine RPM
- off the shelve components (can be bought anywhere)
- fits my wifes need for fresh water (cleaning the deck regulalrly)
- fits my estimated engine running scheme (between once every day - once every 3 days)
- easy to maintain

here is a picture of the bracket alwoplast made to fit the extra Balmar alternator (24v, 150A) and the watermaker pump:


Also i have had Alwoplast make a provision for the installation of an extra 24v watermaker as a backup, which I might be installing in the future.

14th October 2008, 12:29 PM
That's alot of torque you are putting on the front end of your engine. What does the engine supplier say?

I have heard of issues with the front-end bearings if the loads get too high, so normally they reccomend that the loads be "balanced" by having the pulleys opposite each other.

Have the yard done this before? Any experience out there on this set-up?

I have decided to go with the 3 KVA Yanmar generators that fit between the flywheel and gearbox, and use electric pumps for the watermaker.

Everything on a boat is a compromise to some extent.:)

Hope it works out well.


P.S. If that high pressure pump has spring loaded valves, I would reccomend a spare set. Salt water and spring material aren't always a good mix.

14th October 2008, 02:13 PM

Volvo supplies an extra mastervolt high output alternator as an option on this d2-55 engine. Volvo (USA) has said that 3 pulleys can be run off the engine, with off course a max load per pulley, but this is within the limits according to Chris White.

Did not know about the pulleys opposite, will inquire, thanks !

The yard has done the extra alternator on the first A57, with the standard setup from volvo. After the delivery trip from Chile to San diego, 2 of the 3 screws were loose, so that's why they came up with this bracket.

They have done various watermaker installs on other newly built multihulls and repairs on boats coming round the Horn. Will check again on setup.

Spring loaded valve is 316TI, but i will inquire with Echotec and order the spare, thanks !


14th October 2008, 02:25 PM
In fact for the Volvo d2-55 the power which can be taken via a maximum
of three extra belt grooves on the crankshaft nose is 6,8 Kw/pulley

14th October 2008, 02:44 PM
The valve is 316Ti, but is there a spring? That would be more critical IMO.

Did you go for the electric feed pump? Best IMO. I would ensure that it is fed through a scoop like the one by Marelon, as with the speeds you will see on that lovely boat, aeration could become an issue.


15th October 2008, 02:27 PM
FWIW, I have a 60 and 130 Mastervolt alternators on my Volvo MD-22's. A special bracket was manufactured for the 130's. The previous owner had one bracket crack and was replaced. I've had no problems.

That said, this engine driven watermaker set up obviously necessitates running an engine - and running the SAME engine - whenever you want to make water. Why do you want to paint yourself in that corner? Granted, a single electric high pressure pump can fail and perhaps the motor driven pump is more reliable. Or is it you want the engine noise to drown out the watermaker noise? :D Nothing runs quieter than a solar panel........

Best of luck to you with a truly outstanding boat.

Catana 471-44

15th October 2008, 05:54 PM
Hi dave,

Nice picture with the iceberg ! Is that your boat in front of it ?

I have had both the engine driven watermaker (echotec) and the 12v one (little wonder) on my mono.
I did not like having to run the little wonder for hours to fill up the watertanks just a little bit and it was not exactly without noise eather.

I prefer the noise for one hour and then back to peacefulness.....

I will have 4 kyocera 130 for the lovely solar power, no wind generator (hate those), so i hope to be able to keep the engine running down to the minimum.

Nice thing about a cat compared to a mono is that you are much further away from the engine-noise and will have less noise because the engines are much smaller.

What do you use on electric power consumption and can you run the watermaker on the extra power from the solars ?


15th October 2008, 07:14 PM
Hi Ron - yes, that's my boat - but not me. The previous owner in Patagonia after rounding the Horn east to west. I won't be repeating that. :D

I have 6X 110 Siemens panels, no gen set, no wind gen. I will not go long range cruising until next spring, so I personally cannot report on the DC consumption vs supply, but the previous owner claims to have been self sufficient without a lot of engine hours - including making water with the solars. The indicated engine hours seem to support this claim. During the time I've had this boat I have only had to run an engine once to recharge the batts and hook up to shore power only once to run the AC water heaters. Solars have caried everything else. However, none of my use has included "cruising" level consumption.


16th October 2008, 09:18 AM
The valve is 316Ti, but is there a spring? That would be more critical IMO.

Did you go for the electric feed pump? Best IMO. I would ensure that it is fed through a scoop like the one by Marelon, as with the speeds you will see on that lovely boat, aeration could become an issue.


Echotec respons:
Since two years, the spring and all inner components are made from high quality stainless steel and no case of corrosion is known to us. I would not recommend spare parts other than O rings supplied with the extended maintenance kit.

Yes we use the electric feed pump and yes the intake water will be fed through a scoop.