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Washougal newbies checking in


Toadpapa
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Pretty much a copy and paste from reef2reef but someone there told me about this place so a quick introduction and so glad to find resources and knowledgeable people in the area.  
My 17 year old is very interested in cuttlefish. He has researched them and can spout off facts about them left and right. Last year, thanks to a friend, we were lucky enough to be allowed into the cuttlefish breeding area behind the scenes at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. My son picked up some great information and made some great contacts.

He has been talking about raising cuttlefish for a good two years now and is well aware how hard it is. Though he is the driving force into this hobby, I am more of a poison dart frog/amphibian kind of person hah, I have decided to leap in with him so we can take this journey together. Our first step is to learn how to successfully keep a saltwater reef aquarium. Learn the ins and outs, the water changes, how much commitment this is going to be etc. If after a year or so of learning that and if he feels comfortable with moving forward he would try his hand at cuttlefish, raising eggs and going down that path.

We have decided, I think on a reefsystem 425xl to get us started. But after looking at a couple build threads and mixing stations and modifications and all that I am starting to panic a bit on this. Information overload and I already am getting analysis paralysis. We are trying to decide what is needed now and what we can set up later. RODI system into a trash can and just mix the water by hand and cart with buckets might be how we start. But then there is lights, and all the other stuff to think about and here we go again spiraling into information overload. In my day when I set up a tank full of african cichlids I just popped a fluval onto a million pound 60 gallon tank and put on the hood and called it good. Things sure have come a long way from that!

Anyway we are both excited to start this journey together and hopefully this wild ride doesnt turn into a car wreck hah.  Dang glad we found this site that is for sure

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The good thing about the hobby is you can definitely “grow into it”. Seeing people’s crazy setups, fish rooms, mixing stations, etc may seem intimidating but are usually a result of learning and adapting/upgrading over time.

 

the good thing is companies like Red Sea know that some people get overloaded on what to buy so they make setups that come pretty much ready to go (sump/lights etc are included). I would find someone who has a similar setup to what you are looking at and see how they did things. Ask questions and get advice from people local, lots of knowledge you can get (and see) within a 50 mile radius of you.

 

Cant speak to raising cuttlefish, but I have seen them at Cuttlefish and Coral in the past. Jeff (the owner) I’m sure would be a great resource for your questions about a setup. Breeding is it’s own beast though so be warned, you may end up with more than just a single tank to raise them. Haven’t heard of anyone locally doing it, only clowns and seahorses.

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We just visited that store this weekend. Just to start researching and stuff, lovely people that worked there. All very helpful and didn't seem irratated at our questions.   My son has big plans of more tanks. Pretty sure he has the fever. Heh

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We just visited that store this weekend. Just to start researching and stuff, lovely people that worked there. All very helpful and didn't seem irratated at our questions.   My son has big plans of more tanks. Pretty sure he has the fever. Heh
Glad you found your way to Cuttlefish and Coral. I couldn't possibly think of a better place for you to end up. Ironically, I don't think they typically carry cuttlefish anymore. Jeff could probably special order them for you, though.

Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk

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Definitely going to start with eggs if and when we get to that point.  Looks like it will be a long journey to get there though.  Took the first step tonight and bought the nib nano tank that was listed for sale. Will be a good little tank to start learning on while we research parts and things for the bigger tank.  This way we don’t rush things.    

 

Im glad we went to cuttlefish and corals first also, they raised the standard of what a store should look and feel like and also the people helping us were great. Definitely going to give them a shot when we order the 425 and things. Would love to support local rather then an internet company. 

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@Toadpapa, WELCOME!   Yes, I'm one of those people who just completed a crazy fish room remodel.   But don't get overwhelmed. I ran my system for >30 years on Heavy-Manual mode.   Mixed water by hand., hauled buckets by hand, Was supposed to test chemistry by hand (which means most often I didn't), ...   When I first started, it was All About The Cheap - no matter how much energy I had to put in.  These days I'm moving into Its-All-About-Automated.   

My words of wisdom - Don't be afraid to Just Try It.  Don't spend $$$ on your first coral, but don't be afraid to try one whenever you want.   Same on fish, same on equipment, same on cuttlefish.   I do a lot of research and reading, but to really have the learning sink in, I've had to try it.   

Enjoy!

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Started gathering our components today so I guess we really are doing this thing.  Thanks to Sean we picked up the nano he had for sale and since we were in the neighborhoodish of the place SuncrestReef suggested for containers for a mixing station and they fit in the car just barely so it was meant to be.  This way we can learn about the nuances of a small tank while researching and gathering parts for the 425 we will buy. 

 

Special thanks to Sean spending a bit of time going over his tank and how he does things.  Always great to hear from experienced folks.
 

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  • 2 weeks later...

First Id like to throw a huge thanks to SuncrestReef for documenting exactly what he used to set up his mixing station including all the parts.  I had never done any plumbing at all so he really made it idiot proof.  My son and I had the ipad out and were constantly checking to see which piece came next but after a while it just all clicked for us and suddenly it all made sense.  The RODI is in the laundry room and that wall is the wall right behind the mixing station.  We plan on drilling through there and connecting all the 1/4 tubing.  We also decided to collect the discharge water for watering the garden and stuff instead of wasting that water down the drain.  Still waiting on some parts to completely finish the hose portion of the mixing station but we are beyond happy to have this part done.  I think we were both stressing about this step and in the end it was pretty dang easy.

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  • 2 months later...

Had a lot of researching to do so progress has been slow. Finally decided on the lights. Aquatic life dimmable with two kessil a360x. The kessils should be here next week so we can finish the lights up.  I should note the tank is pulled out from against the wall so the lights might look off. 

Connor also has been studying negative space aquascape so he is busy chipping away and designing. Not in that much of a hurry since the nano is up and running but we are trying not to get bogged down in research also.   

 

 

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