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Myiot

Checking the water?

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I have a minor obsession about running out of water. It's happened a couple of times at the worst possible moment - in the shower!
My Xplore 304 has a tiny bathroom & the shower is only used when there is no alternative.

 

I attend a few music festivals in my van. The water isn't always close to hand & running out when you're covered in soap is a pain.

 

Much as I admire those folk who ritually trot off every night to refill their water, or carry two containers, I'm afraid that's not me!

 

As well as being a gadget freak, I'm a gadget designer too, so I set about solving my problem. I've developed a couple of useful devices (for me at least!) which I use all the time now. An impressed caravanning friend suggested that I should try selling them, so let's see what you think!

 

The first device is 'Aquatest' which is a tiny handheld monitor which detects water through the side of the container. It's much better than lifting your container or kicking it, and it's very cheap.

The second is 'Aqualert' which is more sophisticated. It sounds a wireless alarm inside the van if the water is getting low.

 

I've given away quite a few of these things & feedback has been very positive so I thought I might chance my arm & see if there is a market!

 

I've set up a 'trading' web page to sell Aquatest, initially for £2. 99. Aqualert is in the pipeline & I imagine that it would sell for £35-£50. It's quite tedious to

assemble & I'm not sure that I want to do this personally on a larger scale.

 

I'm sure that there will be comments:

'I use a watering can'
'I have seven Aquarolls'
'I don't shower'
'SWMBO gets the water'
'Use a serviced pitch'
'What a waste of money'
'You have a shower?'
etc etc ;)

All comments are gratefully received :)

 

Cheers

 

Ian

Edited by Myiot

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More useful wold be an automatic changeover valve for twin aquarolls with some kind of telltale inside the van to show that one was empty.

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That's complicated? It needs plumbing, and potentially two pumps. Aqualert can tell you when you're running low on one aquaroll so it's time to swap.

Thanks for the comment :Thankyou:

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Well, I must be blind or daft! I see a hand with a lolly stick being moved up and down and a bloke says "water here,  no water here". 

I'll try it in the pub tonight. "Beer here,  but no Beer here."  

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21 minutes ago, Stevan said:

More useful wold be an automatic changeover valve for twin aquarolls with some kind of telltale inside the van to show that one was empty.

 

How could that be more useful to me?  I only carry ONE aquaroll!;)

3 minutes ago, Ern said:

Well, I must be blind or daft! I see a hand with a lolly stick being moved up and down and a bloke says "water here,  no water here". 

I'll try it in the pub tonight. "Beer here,  but no Beer here."  

 

Take it you mock the idea? :ph34r:

 

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Haha Ern, perhaps both? ;)

I'm afraid the outside video isn't very obvious :( The LED doesn't show well - I might try again with more favourable light.

Incidentally, Aquatest DOES work with most glass! You can put it against your beer glass and it can detect the level :)

That's of no use to anyone, I know, but it's fun!

I don't know why but some glass containers work & some don't.

@John_b_45

I only carry one aquaroll too!

PM me & I will send you an Aquatest free of charge.

 

Ian

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Congratulations on the innovations and for having the courage to promote and market them.

Gadgets with similar aims exist for autos but I've never come across anything like these in the caravan/camping  world.

I'd find certainly buy an Aquatest .

 

Thought.   Would an aquatest work on an lpg bottle?

 

Another thought.   Would something like an aqualert work on a waste water container?  Early warning of that getting ready to empty could be useful.

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Love the web site.  Simple, tells everything, bit of hummer.  So many try to do too much and try too hard to look good but end up being difficult to navigate.

 

John

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I always know when the waste water tank is full - it flows out of the inlet hole!

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1 hour ago, Stevan said:

More useful wold be an automatic changeover valve for twin aquarolls with some kind of telltale inside the van to show that one was empty.

Change the cap on the roll with the pump to be sealed tightly, place a pipe from that cap to the bottom of roll 2. As the pump runs it causes the water to be taken from the 2nd roll, when the second one is empty the first will still have a reasonable amount of water, just keep refilling the second one.

 

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Thanks all for the encouragement :Thankyou:

I've added a new video to Aquatest for the benefit of Ern. It isn't smoke & mirrors - it actually works :)

To answer CJ1149. Sadly neither Aqualert or Aquatest work on LPG bottles :( of any kind.

They would certainly work on a waste container but they're not really the right shape for it.

 

Aquatest seems to work on the toilet cassette though! No space for Aqualert :( I need to fiil mine(!) to check this for sure

 

By way of explanation; my 'trade' is electronics & computing. I'm soon to retire but I'm a bit obsessive - I can't resist applying my expertise to my 'hobbies'

 

Cheers

 

Ian

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At risk of boring you all. ..

 

Aquatest certainly works on my (Thetford) toilet cassette! Just touch it it on the side to discover how full it is :)

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19 minutes ago, Myiot said:

At risk of boring you all. ..

 

Aquatest certainly works on my (Thetford) toilet cassette! Just touch it it on the side to discover how full it is :)

 

When you say it won't work on an LPG bottle is that because the bottle is metal or the liquid gas inside is not suitable?

I know my Safefill has a viewing strip so nothing needed but there may be other bottles make in a similar way?  Just a thought.   

To be honest If I couldn't see my lpg level I'd use your gadget to check for sure.

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Hi John,

Aquatest doesn't work with any metal container. It works on some glass containers but not others. That's no help!

 

I use BP Gaslight bottles & it's certainly not reliable, partly because it's difficult to get to the actual container wall.

 

If you have a Safefill Light bottle I'm interested to know if it works!

 

Cheers

 

PS I've added a very short youtube video to the Aquatest web page to show that it works with my Thetford toilet cassette.

Maybe the well prepared among us carry two of these as well? ;)

 

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Two aquarolls.

Check connected one before having a shower, if its low swop them over. Simple and no cost (unless you generally only use one aquaroll).

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16 minutes ago, hp100425ev said:

Two aquarolls.

Check connected one before having a shower, if its low swop them over. Simple and no cost (unless you generally only use one aquaroll).

 

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Hi,

 

Alf the Aquatest had a remote LED then this device could be fixed to the side of the toilet flush water tank a a suitable height to give a warning that the water level is low.

 

Dave

 

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No potential customer here. Mk1 eyball sees water level in translucent jerrycan(s).

 

Good luck with your inventions.

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Even if you have two aquarolls you still need to check the connected one? As for no cost - last time I looked aquarolls are quite expensive!

I actually have two (a standard & a small one) but never carry both together.

I usually check my aquaroll before a shower but I've been caught out a couple of times :( How do you check? Can you guess better than Aquatest ?

Dave, Aquatest can't be used 'fixed' anywhere as it self callibrates after about 10 seconds. This is an inherent 'issue' with the sensor unfortunately.

However, Aqualert can be used in a fixed location. Unfortunately, it's a lot more complex & significantly more expensive to make (&sell) :(

 

I'm encouraged that this has sparked a bit of interest. We've received a few orders from forum readers over the weekend & these were posted today. The postage alone costs £1. 01 so the £2. 99 offer won't last for long. ..

 

 

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I could see an audible alert for the waste water container being useful - I was only thinking about that last week when we were away. With such containers being long,low and relatively shallow, would it still work? To provide an alert in the van is it hard wired, and if so how do you see the set up?

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Chris, checking the waste water isn't so easy. Both Aquatest & Aqualert effectively work by checking the 'height' of the liquid in the container. On a wastemaster this is probably best done on the 'hump' of the container.

We don't do wires! Aquatest is a simple hand held device. Aqualert provides a remote warning using a radio frequency alert to an indoor device, however it works 'the wrong way round' in that it sounds an alarm when a container is empty, rather than full. Conceivably we can make the full/empty condition selectable.

Thanks for your thoughts. We'll look into this.

Hawkaye, thanks for your encouragement.   Translucent cans make life easy, can you see them OK in the dark? Aquatest can.

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Are you considering selling kits for for the Aqualert? I can happily assemble most stuff, but do not have the design skills sadly.

 

Looks very neat!

 

Mike

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Love to see innovation that may actually

a   work and b   solve a problem.  

You have another order.  

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Order just sent. At £2. 99 it's a steal.

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Hi all,

It's great to hear some positive thoughts. At £2. 99 it IS a steal! Postage & packing is the real killer 😕

P&P will be added soon. ..

We are keen to get these out and about, and hopefully get some feedback. So far, everyone seems to use them on wine bottles & beer glasses!!! 🙂

We don't want to know which bottles work & which don't! 😀 We've done it too! 😛

We're considering building Aqualert 'in-house' as the commercial arrangements we've been offered would double the price. ..

 

@MVJ - it's probably not something you should build yourself.   I'm not doubting your skills but the code is proprietary and we went through a lot of prototypes to get it right 😕

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