Best Marine Water Softener

If you are debating on whether to purchase the best marine water softener or not, deciding on which one is best for your needs can take considerable time. As there are many options available, comparing among them can be confusing. Furthermore, if you are uncertain about which features to look for, you might not be able to decide which one is most ideal for your situation. In this article, we will help you to understand what a marine water softener is and also help you to understand why you should have one on your boat or in your RV.

Best Marine Water Softener Advantages

Buying and installing one of the best marine water softeners is the only way to have reliably soft water on your boat or RV. If you spend a lot of time on your RV or boat doing camping, hiking or just living, then having reliable access to soft water is important.

best marine water softener

Installation of a marine water softener is quite simple, thus many people choose to install one themselves on their boat or RV. Of course, professional installation is also always an option.

You can combine your marine water softener with an in-line water filter to make your water safer. When you are in the middle of the water or forest, having access to safe soft water for consumption and bathing is a must. Installing a marine water softener guarantees that your water’s mineral content is properly balanced. Adding a filter also ensures that harmful toxins are removed, as well.

A boat or RV water softener will also help extend the life of your plumbing and appliances, thus it will save you considerable money in the long run. A portable water softener will work to minimize the hard mineral build-up on your pipes and fixtures, helping you to avoid costly replacements and repairs.

If you do laundry while on your boat or RV, a water softener will also extend the life and vibrancy of your clothes and bedding. You can also use less soap, detergent, and fabric softener.

Best Marine Water Softener Features

When comparing the best marine water softeners, there are a few key features that you need to consider. Those include:

  • Size/Capacity – How many gallons of water can the softener process and hold
  • Water Hardness – Factoring in the hardness of your water source is important to consider
  • Grain Capacity – This determines how much minerals and contaminants that the softener can remove
  • Maintenance – You want a portable water softener that requires as little maintenance as possible

If you pay particular attention to these main features, you should be able to choose the best marine water softener for your situation.


Finding the best marine water softener for your needs doesn’t need to be a challenge. Start by determining your needs and your budget, then look for the features that we mentioned above. Be sure to read online reviews and also check youtube videos of the water softeners that you have narrowed your selection down to.

By following our advice, you will save a lot of money and have a great marine water softener installed in no time, with years of maintenance-free use.


K2 Coolers Help Marine Research Team

Last updated on September 20th, 2020 at 02:41 pm

During my career as a marine ecologist, I have learned that certain things are necessary when I am out on my boat. My top three most important items to have aboard my research boat are my sunscreen, my equipment, and my K2 Cooler. Sometimes a field study can take an entire day from sun up to sun down, so making sure I am properly hydrated and fed is imperative to maintaining good health while performing my tasks. After doing some research I found that K2 Coolers were the most equipped ice chests on the market to do the job. I always constantly rave about how my K2 Coolers are the absolute best coolers to have as a marine biologist. When asked why they are the best, I always mention these following reasons.

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K2 Coolers – Perfect Size for a Research Boat

Although K2 Coolers come in a variety of different sizes, I found that the most fitting size for my marine boat is the K2 Summit 50 QT model. Having an adequate amount of space for mobility on my boat is important for being able to move my equipment around easily and make my away around the boat for various studies. I also need to ensure that I have enough room to properly store food and drinks to last myself (and any colleagues that are accompanying me) for an entire day. The K2 Summit 50 QT has enough room to fit 40 cans inside of it, which is plenty of space to populate the ice chest with all of the perishables needed to keep me going during a day’s work.

k2 coolers

K2 Coolers – Good Grip on Boat’s Surface

Spending 90 percent of my day on water causes me to be in contact with slippery surfaces often. Bringing equipment back and forth, as well as encountering waves which can cause the research boat to rock back and forth and cause anything on the boat to be at risk of going overboard. Finding a cooler that is secured on the boat is a top priority and K2 Coolers definitely go above and beyond what it is expected of a cooler when it comes to staying put on even the most unstable surfaces. K2 Cooler’s SUREgrip™ rubber feet create a massive friction that allows my cooler to stay still even during violent storms! In addition to the reliable SUREgrip™ technology, K2 Coolers also have the option of mounting, which comes in handy during particularly turbulent excursions. Their HOLDtight™ anchoring points are located on adjacent sides of your K2 Coolers and are extremely sturdy and dependable.

K2 Coolers Ice Retention

Obviously, the most important component of a cooler is how well it can maintain ice, so your perishables are fresh for a long period of time. K2 Coolers use a fusion of different technologies to ensure that these ice chests are one of the best on the market when it comes down to retaining ice. K2 uses premium insulation that is created through the tough roto-mold construction method. Their patented SNOWblown™ insulation uses its thickness and pressure injections to keep ice frozen for days on end. Ice retention also depends on how efficient your cooler’s closing mechanisms are. K2 has ICEvault™ gasket and the LOCKaway™ design of the strong lid which deflects the heat trying to come in and traps in the cold that are already inside. Sometimes my ecosystem studies can last somewhere from 3-5 days, but amazingly even by the end of my trip my K2 Cooler still manages to have ice inside of it!

When I’m not working, I have found that my K2 Cooler is also perfect for tailgating. My friends are always envious of my cooler and ask me where I got it from.


K2 Coolers Bottom Line

At the end of the day, I have tried a lot of coolers to bring along during trips throughout my career, but no cooler has the high-quality performance, mobility, and reliability of my K2 Summit. Through my suggestions and trying it out themselves many of my marine research colleagues have become a part of the K2 family. It is almost rare to see a research boat around here that doesn’t have a K2 strapped onto it!

303 Aerospace Protectant Used By Marine Conservationists

Last updated on October 18th, 2019 at 09:55 pm

As marine conservationists, we dedicate our lives to protecting and preserving our magnificent oceanic eco-systems, but what does a group that focuses on helping the environment use to protect our pertinent research equipment? Being that we are a marine conservation group, it is essential to use products that do not cause any damage to the environment, which is why we use 303 Aerospace Protectant to shield our research equipment.

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303 Aerospace Protectant Is Environmentally Safe

Traveling through our Earth’s oceans and seas can expose our research boat to a variety of different harms including salt water exposure, intense UV rays, extreme weather and plenty of other weather-related problems that Mother Nature can send our way, but with the application of 303 Aerospace Protectant we are able to combat these issues with extreme force.

We did an ample amount of research to find a trusted company that was both environmentally friendly and resilient enough to withstand the unpredictable weather, and we ultimately found out about the raved about 303 products. In particular we needed a protectant that could be applied to a variety of different surfaces, including our boats and scuba-gear. 303 Aerospace Protectant proved to be the best of the 303 products to use for this purpose.

303 Aerospace Protectant

303 Aerospace Protectant blows all of the other UV screening protectant products out of the water, as far as being green and not causing any damage to our Earth. 303 Aerospace Protectant manages to be the most powerful boat and gear protectants in the market, but does this without using harmful chemicals, such as nitrates, phospates, toxic organics, caustics, VOCs or Enzymes. In addition to being gentle on the environment, 303 Aerospace Protectant is also gentle on you. A lot of chemically-processed solutions, end up being harsh to the skin, and a lot of the marine conservationists on our teams can only use products that are kind to sensitive skin. 303 Aerospace Protectant does not have an intense smell and is not damaging to skin.

303 Aerospace Protectant isn’t the only one of the 303 products that our marine conservation group uses. We also use 303 Fabric Guard for the different fabric materials that we use during our research. Spraying the 303 Fabric Guard on our neoprene wetsuits before going on each research assignment, enables us to save money from retaining the elasticity and shelf-life of our wetsuits, therein saving valuable funds that we can then use towards protecting our seas and oceans. 303 Fabric Guard is even able to accelerate the stain resistance and water repellency, making it a great product for people who spend a great amount of time in or around bodies of water. Both 303 Aerospace Protectant and 303 Fabric Guard are both affordable and easy to apply, making them the optimal choices for our marine conservation group.

Where To Buy 303 Aerospace Protectant

For us, the answer to where to buy 303 Aerospace Protectant is over at They have a ton of reviews and the best prices we have found.

303 Aerospace Protectant is just many of one 303 Products that are valuable to people who have professions that use the open outdoors as their office space. 303 Aerospace Protectant has definitely helped extend the life of our boat, scuba equipment and wetsuits. Finding a product like 303 Protectant and other 303 products that align with our values and budget is a huge plus for marine conservation.

OPT7 LED Headlight Conversion On Our ROV

Last updated on October 18th, 2019 at 09:55 pm

Last year, as we began exploring deeper water depths for our research, we began having problems with visibility. We though about what sort of things we could do to improve our situation, and one of the team members told us of how they had done a headlight upgrade to their personal vehicle and the results were great. So, we began looking at the possibility of doing an OPT7 LED headlight conversion on our ROV (Remote Operating Vehicle). Well, we finally got around to the task last month.

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As you might imagine, being able to see at extreme depths underwater is critical for a research team. Since we work in a zero natural light environment much of the time, if we don’t have adequate lighting from our ROV headlights, it is impossible to see much of the marine life more than a few feet in front of us. After the OPT7 LED headlight conversion, we are able to see at much farther distances than previously.

opt7 LED headlight conversion

OPT7 LED Headlight Conversion Went Smoothly

Luckily, thanks to the help of one of our researchers who had converted the headlights on his car, along with the information that we found on, our OPT LED headlight conversion went very smoothly. After we had selected the OPT LED’s, we contacted the manufacturer of our ROV, and they assured us that the OPT7 headlights would indeed fit.

Removing the old headlights wasn’t too difficult, either. The hardest part was removing the water-tight enclosures that each of the headlight bulbs are in. The wiring on the old bulbs was very similar to the new OPT7 LED bulbs, so wiring in the new headlights was a snap.

Last week was the first time that we got to test out the new OPT7 headlights. I am extremely impressed with the increased visibility that we now get from our ROV. We can now gather far more data and collect many more species of marine life, thanks to the new bulbs.

Additionally, the lower power consumption of the newer OPT LED bulbs allows us to stay under water longer, if only by a few minutes. But, each time that we are doing a dive, every minute counts, as the dive time is short. Those extra few minutes of dive time allow us to better observe the sea floor. In fact, we have observed several fish and shrimp species in the past month that we haven’t been able to see in years, thanks to the added visibility and dive time that the headlights provide.

OPT7 LED headlights help observe rare fish

We have had such great success with the new lights, that there has been talk among the team of upgrading the research boat with OPT7 LED bow lights, to increase nighttime visibility on the vessel. We will have to check with the maker of the boat to see if an OPT7 LED headlight conversion is possible.

We can’t wait to see what the discoveries we will make in the coming summer months thanks to the new ROV headlights. We’ll be sure to keep you posted should we make any new fish species discoveries in the deep blue.

Installing A SeaStar Solutions Hydraulic Steering System On Our Research Boat

Last updated on October 18th, 2019 at 09:55 pm

I have worked for many years in the field of marine research. Recently in the last several months, I began to investigate the idea of installing a new steering system on our research vessel. We were having issues with the steering becoming stiff and not a responsive as we need it to be. Our boat is an older vessel and I felt that an upgrade would not only help the mobility of the boat, but the functionality would improve with an upgrade in terms of performance. After many years of being out on the water, the easier and less fatiguing that the steering functionality of the boat can be, the better for me and the other people who steer the boat on a regular basis. So I began to do some research on products for improving our steering system in the marketplace, and I came to one conclusion, that a Seastar Solutions Hydraulic Steering System was the best choice for our boat.

hydraulic boat steering kit

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Why We Installed A SeaStar Solutions Hydraulic Steering System

I was looking for 3 items which led me to the choice of a Seastar Solutions hydraulic steering system:

1. Cost – I needed a system which was not going to break our research budget. At around $600, the Seastar Solutions hydraulic steering system was a good fit. Our team performed the installation as well, so it saved a large amount of money on labor, and we had the satisfaction of making sure our boat is well taken care of by our team.
2. Performance – The Seastar solutions hydraulic steering systems have a great reputation of outstanding performance. After installation, the difference in ease of use and movement of the wheel were light years better than our old system. The Seastar name has been synonymous with quality for many years.
3. Quality – Seastar solutions has been in business for almost 60 years. This speaks to the quality of their products. When we purchased the Seastar hydraulic steering system, we knew that we had a quality product which would last for a long time. Seastar has been innovative in the development of these hydraulic steering systems for many years now.

I found SeaKnights to be a great source for researching which boat hydraulic steering kit to buy.

Hydraulic Boat Steering Kit For Our Slow Research Boat

Our research boat is a slow boat by anyone’s standards. For boats with 150HP or less (which is our boat), this BayStar hydraulic boat steering kit is designed specifically for these lower horsepower motors. Very similar to a car, you would not put a $10,000 steering system into a low end car. This hydraulic boat steering kit allows our slow research boat to move fluidly and easily without having to fight turning the wheel. Also, during idling, the boat does not “wander” as with the previous system.

Bottom line for me is that this Seastar solutions hydraulic boat steering kit is the perfect fit for our slow boat and would be a good fit for any boat with 150HP or less looking to upgrade to a quality system at an affordable price. I have had no complaints in the several months since we installed it, and do not anticipate that we will have any in the future as well.

Choosing The Best Ice Shanty for Sale

Last updated on October 18th, 2019 at 09:55 pm

If you love fishing in the winter, an ice shanty or ice hut is a must for you. It keeps you warm and lets you enjoy this fun outdoor activity without succumbing to the freezing cold. But, with so many options, how do you choose the best ice shanty for sale? We’ll help you decide.

best ice shanty for sale

Having the best ice fishing shanty out in the cold ensures that you never miss the fun of prime fishing season, irrespective of the weather. Over the years these ice shanties have evolved from simple shelter to more technologically advanced gears that we see these days.

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Variety of Ice Shanties For Sale

There are mainly 4 types of ice shanties for sale which are popular among fishing experts. They are Windbreakers, Hub-style shelters, Flip-style shelters and the cabin or hut style ice shelters.

Windbreakers are inexpensive, lightweight and easy to carry in any place.

The hub-style shelter is tailor made for the requirements of the ice fishermen. External poles serve as the frame for these ice shelters and they resemble your camping tents.

The third and very popular amongst the anglers is the flip style shelter. These types of shelters are built on a sturdy plastic sled base and can accommodate up to 4 persons.

The fourth option is the cabin-style ice shelters. These are similar to flip style shelters with adjustable poles and plastic sled base. These shelters are the largest models available in the market and accommodate up to 8 persons.

Choosing the Best Ice Shanty

There are various types of ice shacks available in the market and buying the best ice shanty for you can be overwhelming some times. Below are the factors to be considered while buying the best ice shanty for sale that suits you the best.

Thermal Materials: Many modern ice shanties include thermal materials. They help to prevent hypothermia or frostbite in the subzero temperatures and let the sunlight enter inside the shelter. Depending upon the weather condition, this thermal cover is not always required and adds extra weight to the ice shanty’s overall structure.

Size Matters: Size of the shelter dictates how many anglers you’re planning to invite along. It’s feasible that you and your friends can be accommodated in a three-person ice shanty. The extra space will allow you to make room for other equipment.

Weight: If you are a mobile fisherman, weight is one of the most important factors to consider when shopping for the best ice shanty for sale. The lighter your shack, the more likely you’ll be able to pack it quickly and go fishing.

So what are the best ice shanties for sale? Below are some of the ice shacks on a budget that we believe to be the best!

Eskimo Fatfish – A Very Popular Ice House for Sale

The Eskimo Fatfish is made from durable fabric meaning you don’t have to worry about the cold coming in, or more essentially, the warm air leaking out. Eskimo has been manufacturing quality fishing gears for more than five decades. They offer the largest selection of ice shanties at affordable prices, which start from $155. They also offer hand ice augers, power ice augers, chisels, and other fishing gears.

Frabill 6180 Predator – A Sturdy Ice Hut for Sale

The best part of the shanty is the whole structure is based on a sled, makes transportation a breeze. The Frabill is a family-owned business that has been producing high-quality fishing accessories since 1938. You can buy variety of ice shanties from Frabill that include flip-style, cabin, and hard-top. They also offer portable aeration systems, landing nets, apparel, bait traps, and other accessories.

Clam 9127 Vista – A Solid Ice Shanty for Sale

If you are looking for an ice shack that not only withstands the freezing cold, but also the gusty wind?Clam 9127 Vista is the perfect choice for you. Made from heavy-duty Denier fabric, this ice shelter is made to last very long.

Otter Outdoors XT650 – A Top Choice For Ice Shacks for Sale

Brave harsh weather conditions with the Otter Outdoors XT650 Ice Shelter. It is roto-molded and perfect for ice fishing. The design of the shelter makes transportation a breeze. This is made with a durable aluminum frame that can resist extreme weather condition.

So, as you can see, you have plenty of options when it comes to ice fishing huts. While you shouldn’t go for the cheapest one that is available, you also don’t require spending a fortune to buy the best ice shanty for your needs.

For more reviews and recommendations, we recommend that you check out the Outdoor Products U.S. Network.

Musky Rods: St. Croix Continues To Impress

Last updated on October 18th, 2019 at 09:54 pm

During this past summer, I fished with what was possibly the worst musky rod that I have ever used, as well as what was likely one of the best musky rods I have ever used. Today, I’ll detail my experience with a new St. Croix and tell you why they continue to be some of the best musky rods available for sale today.

Disclaimer: often provides product recommendations for folks who quickly want to know what to get. When readers choose to buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we earn affiliate commissions that support our work. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Not All Musky Rods Are Not Created Equal

While attending a University of Green Bay Musky School in 2016, a student had asked me to test out the musky rod he had bought specifically for that trip. It was a well-known brand, but having never cast a musky rod of that brand I took him up on his offer. The muskie rod loaded nicely and cast rather well, even if it was a bit “tipsy” for my liking.

Once I tried doing a figure-8 with this muskie rod, I was shocked with the musky rod’s very poor performance. In addition to the musky rods soft tip flexing too much to properly handle the big lure, the muskie rod labored through the cold water so much so that I wasn’t sure if I could finish the figure-8. And here we stood on the waters of Green Bay, where over 40 percent of muskie catches tend to come from a figure-8 if done properly. A figure-8 made with that musky rod was simply too much work. I gave the musky rod back to the naive student right after that single cast, told him I thought it was an OK muskie rod, and happily returned to my own musky rods.

Muskie Rods From St. Croix

The problem with inferior muskie rods is that rod “drag” while in the water comes from both too-soft of a tip flexing, and also from there being a wider musky fishing rod diameter and line guides. Bigger muskie rod blanks and components are not nearly as streamlined and therefore they can’t “cut” the water effectively.

muskie rods

St. Croix Rods revolutionized the muskie fishing world several years ago when they introduced the Legend Tournament muskie rod series. Fishermen soon learned that St. Croix’s proprietary (ART) Advanced Reinforcing Technology, (IPC) Integrated Poly Curve and (FRS) Fortified Resin System make a huge difference.

St. Croix Legend Elite Musky Rods

St. Croix raised the bar even further during the 2015 sport and fishing show season by introducing the all new Legend Elite musky rods series. Tiger musky anglers who saw the new musky rods were thrilled at how much more “action” the muskie rods appeared to have, along with how much lighter in weight they were compared to previous Legend Tournament musky rod models. The fishing actions of the new St. Croix Elite musky rods were even faster.

musky rods

More “action” means that the St. Croix Legend Elite musky rods take less effort to cast. A quicker fishing action equates to easier casting effort, and also allows for easier bait or lure manipulation, more reliable hooksets and significantly decreased drag in the water. Due to it’s lighter weight, you will be less fatigued on a long fishing day. The St. Croix Legend Elite muskie rods add better guides, a higher grade graphite, and FRS and ART features that are also on the St. Croix Legend Tournament rods.

Musky Rods: Top Choice

Now, whenever I tiger musky fish, I find that I subconsciously reach for the St. Croix Legend Elites before others. This is most likely due to their add action and lighter weight, which makes them simply more fun to muskie fish with. Also, in some instances, a tiger muskie strike felt like my bait simply getting “heavy”, so fishing with a more sensitive musky rod helped to successfully catch these light-hitting muskies.

The St. Croix Legend Elite musky rods do have a hefty, but worth it, price tag. Each musky angler must decide for themselves whether the benefits of the St. Croix Legend Elite are worth the extra cash. In my opinion, they absolutely are. The wide use and acceptance of the St. Croix Legend Tournament muskie series is what inspired the folks of St. Croix to come out with an even better muskie rod, which they have no doubt succeeded with the St. Croix Legend Elite. Without a doubt, St. Croix has raised the bar yet again and set a new standard for musky rods.