View Full Version : 75g Soft only tank

05-16-2014, 02:15 PM
75gallon reef ready. Started Oct 2013.

Built Sump as an all in one ATS/sump combo. ATS feed directly from Herbie drain. Ligths are 6 Red 700ma LEDs. ATS has been running since Jan. Currently just running as a single side but built to be a double if ever needed. Just have to add Heatsink/LEDs to the other side if needed. Thus far, tank does well one sided so no plans to run it as a dual.

Most of the larger leathers where from my 180g show tank ( which is also a ATS only tank ), I decided I wanted to keep a tank with only soft corals. No hard corals of anykind. It has been more challenging that I thought. Took a while to get the flow pattern well enough that the corals weren't constantly closing up and shedding. While I have tried many times, still can't seem to keep Actinodiscus sp mushrooms. Have no problem with rhodactis or ricordia types but actinodiscus will shrivel up and then just detach from the rock in about 2 weeks time. I've tried 6 or 5 different types: red, blue, orange etc. and all just don't make it. Never though of all things mushrooms woud be hard to keep but that has been the case.

Maintenance: Water changes once a week of approx. 25%, however I use recycled water from my 180g tank for the water change so that there is no extra costs for salt. Siphon the substrate with every water change. Use 1/2 cup of carbon per week. Harvest the ATS screen once a week.

Filtration: ATS and carbon reactor.

Additives: Occasional iodine in hopes that xenia and other leathers benefit. I do 3 drops of Korallen-Zucht ZEOvit Sponge Power per day for the sponges in there. No calcium or alkalinity additives since soft only tank and water change should be plenty.

Lighting: 42 DIY LED setup. 14 700ma 4.5K whites, 14 700ma Blues, 14 700ma UV. UV run at 100% all day. The other 2 are on the Apex VDM to control dimming. Par levels are pretty low in the back of the tank and on the bottom, could definately use more LEDs but no immediate plans to add more.

Flow: Speedwave DC-3000 pump runs at speed #5 of 6 speeds available. Output is Tee to supply the carbon reactor the rest for return. It indirectly drives the ATS as well becuase herbie drain directly feeds the ATS. In Tank circulation is by Tunze 6055 powerheads, alternate cycles at 0 to 50% speeds and controlled by the Apex VDM module.

Controller: Apex Jr. I don't need pH just temp. I did add a VDM module. 2 channels control the blue & white leds, the other 2 channels used for controlling the Tunze powerheads. Jr. only has 4 ports all in use ( 1 heater, other 3 for the LED lights ). ATS lights are just a simple timer as it's not worth adding another powerbar to the apex just for that. Tunze powerheads are not plugged into the Jr. just controlled by the Jr to save ports.


2 chromis that were outcasts from the 180g that otherwise would have been killed by the other chromis.

1 Blue Kupang damsel for the same reason the other kupang from the 180g.

Convict Tang that is eventually destined for the 180g it was original placed in there becuae it wouldn't eat frozen, only nori. Wanted it to get more agressive at eating before adding to the 180g show but I like it in the 75g now that it will just stay until outgrows it.

Copperband butterfly for same reason, want it to go in the 180g show but still hasn't figured out aptasia. I add misc. frags/plugs from the frag tank every so often to try to get it to take a liking to aptasia. Eats frozen well though.

Pair of scotter blennies. Never had scooter blennies before. Pretty fun to watch. They eat frozen well.

Small yellow coris wrase.


Full tank shot:


Shot of the sump with built in ATS, herbie drain directly feeds the ats, return pump is t to the carbon reactor and the return. The other 1" flex PVC is the emergency drain overflow for the herbie setup which is normally not in use. Topoff is just gravity feed float valve w/ 5g bucket as freshwater resevoir which located on the other side of the wall. :


ATS screen:


Bottom Center pic of the maxi-mini carpet:


Left side:


Another left side:


Right side:


anders moon
05-19-2014, 03:54 AM
nice tank and good motivation for all of us in here!!!

keep up blowing us away with updates!!!!

05-21-2014, 07:52 PM
Great tank!!!

09-30-2014, 02:17 PM
2 weeks away from 1 year Anniversary.

Tank is doing great. Some bubble aglae popping up here and there. Aptasia are creeping in as well need to zap'em with some kalkwasser. No other issues.

I did replace the DIY Tank lights in July with a 48" Photon from reefbreeders.

Today ( 9/30/2014 ) Harvest:


Tank Shots:





09-30-2014, 04:07 PM
Really nice colors. Rooting for the sponge!

09-30-2014, 04:37 PM
Really nice colors. Rooting for the sponge!

Orange lettuce looking one isn't going to make it. It's looking like swiss cheese. The orange tree ones are holding there own ( haven't grown but haven't shrunk either ) been there since Nov.

I add silicate ( liquid glass ), vitamin C several times a week to attempt to get increase bacteria for food but hasn't stopped from declining. I was hoping no skimmer, heavy feeding etc. that maybe could keep them but no going to work. Won't try again. The Purple/Blue Vase sponge is photosynthetic and doesn't really have any special needs so will just stick with that one.

12-16-2014, 11:45 AM
75g just got upgraded to a 120g on Saturday 12/13/2014 . Added an additional LED fixture ( Photon 32 ) to give better front to back coverage. The Photon 48" wasn't quite going to cut it.

Still using the same sump/scrubber as the 75g. I built the scrubber as two sided but only lighting one side. So if need be I have room to grow more algae if needed.

Slightly rearranged from the 75g and with more room in front added a number of zoanthids that were in the 180g show.

Please excuse the aptasia, always a pain when the grow in amongst the zoanthids.


Closer center shot:


Closer left side shot:


Closer right side shot:


End Shot:


03-19-2015, 08:33 AM
Nearing the 18month mark.

Aptasia is pretty much under control. A few visable remaining and will continue to kalk paste them.

Bryopsis is starting to show up particualarly in the zoa colonies, that is an easy fix with hydrogen peroxide dips. There is a small patch on the main rock work that I will smother in kalk paste and hope for the best.

I plan to expand the algae scrubber, it was built to be two sides but only had 1 side lit. Will add some leds to the other side in hopes to help curb the minor algae outbreaks.

Full tank shot:


Todays Harvest:

A little longer than normal usually harvest 7 days this time it has been 11 days. Normally after rinsed and squeezed it is about baseball sized, today it was slightly larger than a softball amount rinsed and squeezed.


03-20-2015, 07:49 AM

06-08-2015, 09:09 PM
beautiful tank love the scape of the 75 ::)
update? do you run carbon and if you how often?

06-10-2015, 07:17 AM
Finally got around to adding lights to the second side. It was never needed with the 75g tank but after upgrading to 120g and adding more livestock it was time to increase output. I added the Dimmable 300W LED Grow Light 3W Full Spectrum IR costs around $110. Trying to DIY by the time you buy a heatsink and ballast your around $70 so really didn't make sense and put the money towards the fixture. I been using these fixtures replacing 4X54w T5s on my 180g show for about 4 months with great results. For me, running with dial at 40% for 18 hours seems to be the sweet spot. Others in my local club have started using this fixture for ATS and refugiums after my success with it. Growing cheato in refugium, I let a guy borrow one and less than a week he already knew it was working better and ordered one.

Tanks is doing well, just a couple spots of byropsis but it's getting slower so hopefully getting it under control.

Added a rock anemone and a very small orange maxi-mini anemone back in March. No other plans for corals or fish just let it grow.

ATS with new fixture, the old 8 bulb 660nm 120degree 3w leds was moved to the back side:


New fixture side ( previously had no light just caked on coraline algae ). After 1 week was virtually the same output as the old mature side:


The existing mature side lit by 8 700mah 120degree 660nm LEDs:


Total harvest 1 week growth, 2.5 cups rinsed and sqeezed:


Quick full tank shot:


06-10-2015, 07:20 AM
beautiful tank love the scape of the 75 ::)
update? do you run carbon and if you how often?

Yes, without a skimmer if I don't run carbon on my tanks after a while they will create a odor. 120g tank ( upgraded from 75g ) I use 1/2 cup of Rox .8 carbon in a BRS reactor that is feed from the return pump. Ideally change it ( and the filter floss that is in the reactor as filler and hold the carbon from shifting ) every week but sometimes gets skipped to every 2 weeks. If from observation tank isn't doing well, I may replace sooner but that is pretty rare now that things are pretty settled and very little changes.

06-10-2015, 07:27 AM
When you say "new screen side" what do you mean? Do you have 2 screens, or is that just the side with the new light?

06-10-2015, 07:31 AM
When you say "new screen side" what do you mean? Do you have 2 screens, or is that just the side with the new light?

Same screen just the side that never had a light on it. It was caked with coraline algae. I roughed it up with a hole saw prior to using the new fixture.

Edited the post to clarify.

06-10-2015, 08:06 AM
Ah. I would have probably left the coraline algae on it, that's a good growth substrate

08-21-2015, 10:29 AM
August update:

Tanks is doing great. Little bit of byropsis starting to pop back up in places and need to do another round a aptasia killing. Usually just slightly cutting back daily food so ATS can catch back up and the byropsis will fade away again.

Large Colt needs a major trim so wanted to get a pic before it gets chopped becuase it's blocking too much light from lower corals.

No new corals. I haven't been buying any livestock since the early spring frag swap. Only essential supplies to keep the tank running ro/di filters etc. Can't really think of much I want to add, another rock amenone maybe. I'm not into palys and hasn't really been any zoanthids I'm really eyeing.

Been trying to move stuff of the sandbed, sold some duplicates off, others still migrate into into a 29g in-wall tank.

I did loose 3 fish in July: long nose butterfly, female clown, bristle tooth tang. Believe it to have been ich or something. Hadn't been paying attention to the tank and ich got too far along couldn't save them. Only one I will for sure replace is the clown.

Current Full Shot:


08-21-2015, 04:06 PM
Nice. I agree that the "difficult" bryopsis will just go away on it's own, it the scrubbing is enough.

03-18-2016, 08:24 AM
This tank has been officially shutdown. Most of the contents where combined into my 180g show tank.