We decided on the Spectra because of its capability to produce a significant amount of fresh water with a modest amount of electric power.
The model we selected, the Santa Cruz 380, can produce up to 380 gallons of very pure fresh water per day. I was concerned about the amount of space it would take. It can make as little as 9 gallons per hour on approximately 8 amps at 12 volts with one of its two pumps running.
Now that the unit is installed, I am very pleased with the results, and look forward to using it a great deal during the trip. In anticipation of the water we will have available, we have installed a fresh-water shower on deck, which can also be used to wash down the salt water on deck. Oh, yes!!!!
We purchased our Spectra watermaker from Bill Owra at Everfair Enterprises, in Punta Gorda, Florida. We also purchased our solar panels from them. They also design and manufacture the Fourwinds line of wind-generators. Bill and Lillian run a top-notch business, specializing on energy saving products for boaters, particularly sailors. You can reach them at: http://www.charternet.com/fourwinds/
The challenge of designing the installation, including locating and installing the Spectra watermaker went to Mark Cenak, of Sausalito,, an excellent engineer with a strong sense of the practical, who is a cruising sailor himself. He recommended that I go with the Santa Cruz model which comes with an integrated control panel. This saves on installation work and centralizes all the controls, which are installed at the factory, reducing failure points.
Jim Umberger, a top-notch master carpenter in Alameda, redesigned the door in our engine room so that is would host the new Spectra control panel, and yet continue to give us access to the spare parts storage behind the door.
Shown below is Marc Cenak, proudly showing the resulting installation in SIESTA's engine room.