Platypus QuickDraw review: a great filter with a big flaw

Platypus QuickDraw offers a stunning flow rate, thought-out features like a flip-top and bottom cap. But it has a big design flaw that may be a deal-breaker.

Platypus QuickDraw review: a great filter with a big flaw

Last weekend, I had a chance to field-test the new Platypus QuickDraw water filter system on a 3-day trip to Yosemite. This review is based on my initial impressions. I’ll update it as I get a chance to put it through more use.

I was excited to try out the new filter as it combines many of the best aspects of the Sawyer Squeeze and Katadyn BeFree filters, improving on some of their shortcomings:

Platypus QuickDraw filter and bag
The Platypus QuickDraw filter and bag.
Platypus QuickDraw with the top cap open. The bottom cap and water reservoir caps are below it.
The filter has a flip-top and a screw-on cap for the bottom.
  • An excellent flow-rate
  • A 1-liter big-mouth container
  • Works with any standard 28 mm bottle
  • It can be backflushed with a normal water bottle to restore the flow-rate
  • Lightweight
  • A flip-cap for drinking
  • A cap for the bottom so you can store it without getting everything wet (like in your sleeping bag when it’s code)

The good

There’s a lot to like with the Platypus QuickDraw.

  • The flow rate is excellent, better than the Sawyer Squeeze or Katadyn BeFree
  • The wide-mouth bag with its handle makes filling the bottle a breeze, even from lakes
  • The flip-top cap and bottom cap make it easy to store without getting your gear wet
  • It works both with Platypus bags and normal water bottles
  • The bag doesn’t make water taste like plastic
Reviewing the Platypus QuickDraw bag water scooping qualities by filling it with water from a stream.
The wide-mouth bag has a handle which made it easy to scoop up water from lakes and streams.

The bad

There is really only one bad thing about the filter. For some reason, Platypus decided to use 2 protruding plastic pieces instead of a traditional thread on the filter bag.

The inside of the dirty water bottle does not have a traditional thread, rather two protruding plastic pieces.
The filter bag uses a proprietary design instead of traditional threads.

Attaching the filter to the bag is incredibly finicky and requires considerable force, more than feels comfortable. If you don’t align the filter exactly, they put a considerable amount of pressure on the threads. The threads started showing signs of wear after the first day and broke after the third day.

The problem with Platypus QuickDraw: the thread broke after just three days.
The outer thread broke after only three days.

The verdict

While the filter itself is better than the Sawyer Squeeze or BeFree, the design problem with the dirty water reservoir makes it hard to recommend buying the kit that comes with the bag.

Fortunately, the QuickDraw also supports normal 28mm threads on the inside, so you can use it with a Smartwater bottle or another compatible bag, like the 2L Cnoc VECTO. The QuickDraw is a good alternative to the Sawyer Squeeze if you don’t use the Platypus bag.