Doomsday Survival Mods (DIY Hydration Kit and Water Filter)

Introduction: Doomsday Survival Mods (DIY Hydration Kit and Water Filter)

Clean water is scarce and will be important economic and valuable resource in future. In this Instructable i will show you how to make a DIY Hydration kit and a (charcoal + UV + alum) water filter. Most of the Hydration kits in market are costly and incompatible with different bag packs/water filter.

Weather you are hiking or camping in the woods, travelling through world or its the end of the world having a cheap, effective and portable water filter will help you to store and clean water.

After a natural disaster the first thing required is water the same can be built with minimum material.

To know more about carbon(charcoal) based filtering read this Linkedin article.

Most of the carbon and sand based filter work on gravity and even though it cleans the water (most of the impurities) there are still microbes left in water, in order to overcome that i have used Ultra Violet light inside the hydration kit to kill the microbes that must be used for around 12 hours.I have also used Alum for its anti microbial property.

To read more about UV rays microbes killing property read here Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation wikipedia and Ultraviolet disinfection.

Step 1: Required Material and Tools

Items Required:-

  • Bag cloth/sheet - you can buy one from Ebay DIY sheet (you can also use old material).
  • UV led (x10) make sure you order the between (260 nm–270 nm) order from Alibaba UV led
  • 10mm in dia (2 meter long) pipes for drinking and delivery you can use any pipes in emergency but you should use food grade pipes, you can also salvage from old water purifier or order them form Ebay ro pipes
  • plastic old water bottle and old mayo bag
  • Filter paper/ old coffee bags/ any other cloth in emergency.
  • Charcoal or you can buy Amazon activated charcoal
  • Alum.
  • hooks to attach the bag.
  • battery 9-12 volt, connecting wires.
  • soil and pebbles

Tools required:-

  • Hammer
  • Glue gun
  • Sewing needle (bag material) and thread.
  • Adhesive
  • soldering iron and kit
  • Scale white marker pencil

Skills required:-

Collect all parts and proceed to next step.

Step 2: Building the Hydration Pack

Now we will start with the hydration pack, I have used 800 liter mayonnaise packet but you can use any liquid food packing material ( big packet of (1-2 liter)) .

Remember to use food packing material since the are well tested and qualified to store food items , also clean it thoroughly before proceeding.


  • Connect the UV LED in parallel and use the glue gun to properly water proof the entire circuit.
  • Take the packet and make a slit at the center of the base using blade.
  • inset the small piece of pipe (for water inlet) and the water proof UV led.
  • Now carefully close the opening using glue or any liquid sticky material other alternative.
  • Before proceeding carefully check the water tightness of the UV LED strip and water bag.

Now that the water storage kit is complete we now proceed with the water filter.

Step 3: Building the Charcoal Water + ALUM Filter

Now we will proceed with creating the charcoal + alum filter.

Warnings:- small grain particles are dangerous if inhaled proceed the following steps in a well ventilated room or use mask.

Before Proceeding make sure you have all the parts Also please note that some parts can be replaced with something else for example the filter holder can be replaced with later of cloth or plastic.The only use of filter is to stop mixing of two layers.

  • Cut the bottom part of bottle and make hole in center to insert pipe.
  • Finely crush the alum and insert it in bottom most layer.
  • Now we will create the layer filters that will separate the different layers.
    • fold the filter paper approx to the size of filter separator.
    • cut the remaining material.
    • fit the material inside of the separator.
  • Insert the layer 3 of filter paper to avoid mixing of charcoal with alum.
  • Finely crush the charcoal (smaller the particles the better the filter will be).
  • Tightly pack the filter so there is not air left (remember water travels trough least distance).
  • Add another separator and add fine sand then add another separator on top.
  • now add a layer of big charcoal particles and add layer of pebbles.
  • Now close the top with separator and wire mesh.

Now you have the water Filter it will clean the water of all impurities, But in order to make it perfectly drinkable we have to use another method to kill all the microbes (smallest Virus is 20nm and is possible they might have passed through). So i have used 10x UV led bulbs for killing germs. you can also use Boiling/Microwave to achieve similar effects.

Step 4: Crafting the Hydration Pack Cover

Now the charcoal filter and the hydration pack is complete lets build a bag/cover to hold the hydration pack inside our bag, we are building a detachable bag so we can remove the kit when not in use.

we will also build a insulation cover (cloth) to hide the drinking pipe coming out of our bag and save the temperature of water on a hot summer day.

Building the detachable hydration cover.

  • Take the Bag material and place it on plane surface place the hydration bag (mayo bag ) on top of it.
  • carefully mark the edges of hydration bag consider the fully expanded bag size.
  • After marking fold the material and cut the material.
  • now create small strips of the same bag material and fold it so it can go under the hooks, now stitch it using sewing machine (Remember normal sewing machine will now work the bag cloth is more thick).
  • create similar strap on loops to attach on side of hydration holder.
  • now insert the hydration bag and cut a small slit at bottom of cover to make way for pipe.

Building the hydration Pipe insulation cover.

  • Now cut the thin strip of bag material approx three times the circumference of drinking pipe and from the inside of bag to center of the left shoulder strap.
  • Since the sewing machine will not work we have to use adhesive here.
  • Apply adhesive wait for 10-15 sec, now apply force using hammer to make two sides stick.

Building the leather strip to hold the pipe

  • Cut a small piece of leather and make a loop of it around your bag pack shoulder strap.
  • Sew it properly using bag sewing needle.

Step 5: Demonstration and Testing

In order to test the working of hydration bag and water filter i went to nearest lake and filtered the lake water using the water filter and kept the water for 16 hours under UV light.

Later i drank the water around 600 ml ( tip:- it tastes like alum should have removed alum from bottom layer).

I am happy to say after three days still no diarrhea or vomiting. It works.

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    3 Discussions


    2 years ago

    All I need to survive a nuclear war is Instructables...


    Reply 2 years ago

    unfortunately, in the case of nuclear war, the internet is probably going to go down...

    :( guess we're screwed


    2 years ago

    Nicely done, this looks great!