Ted Judy from Custom Aquariums and Ted’s Fishroom Interview – VLOG 3

Matt: Hey guys, this is Matt from Punk your Chucks, and I am so honored today to have the man here with me, Ted Judy from Ted’s Fishroom and Custom Aquariums. Ted, welcome.

Ted Judy: Hi, how are you doing?

Matt: Good.

Ted: Been here all day. It seems weird to say hello now.

Matt: Well, an introduction. Ted’s over here because as you can see behind us we have the rain forest exhibit. If you’ve been following us on our social media and our YouTube channel, you’ll know that we’re building the largest amphibious aquarium that Custom Aquariums has ever built. It is a behemoth. It’s huge, it’s amazing and we’re going to have a lot of footage on it.

What I really want to talk about is the first time that I contacted Custom Aquariums after seeing Jenny solid-gold aquatics bioactive poison dart frog aquarium, the varium and I saw the quality behind her custom aquariums amphibious aquarium, I immediately wrote to Ted, and Ted and I just started discussing and I want to take it from there Ted.

Ted: Well, I’m going to describe a little bit about what he was contacting us about. One of the projects that I’ve managed for Custom Aquariums is called the organic advertising program, which you work with YouTubers, influencers, social media people. We work with people that have been a part of social media in a big way, for many years, some of the biggest in the aquarium hobby, but we also work with people that don’t have any social media presence whatsoever.

We give everybody an opportunity. It’s really based on the size of the project, what you want to do or looking for interesting things and then the base it on discounts. I’d love to say that we give things away for free, but we don’t. The idea is that everybody has some skin in the game, we’ll give you a good discount if you want to do some promotion projects. The reason I want to give this a shout out is because I always want to hear about new projects.

Matt, contacted me in the context of one of these organic advertising projects. Then, when he started showing me what he wanted to do, it was massive. This is one of the biggest projects, one of the biggest scale projects that we even have offered. We have some people that were partnered with that are some pretty great YouTubers, and they’re doing what they’re doing with an aquarium or two.

Matt just came to us with an idea that was completely and truly unique. That captured our interest almost immediately. Then Matt described what he does, which is paint shoes, and what he paints is works of art. As soon as we saw the detail and the creativity that go into the products that he makes for Punk your Chucks, we knew that this was going to end up being a project that we were going to be very proud of to be involved with.

Matt: I really appreciate it. I was thrilled when they decided they were on board with this. As you said, I had to have some skin in the game and I have some skin in the game. [laughs] Which is great. Because that’s my niche, so I don’t mind doing it and especially for something this amazing. I’ve talked about it on the website in the first blog about the quality of Custom Aquariums and how thrilled I am that I have something so amazing to work with that nothing else compares that I’ve seen online.

The quality that goes into Custom Aquariums is something that I want you to touch on, because what really grabbed me because I’m old school seeing the old not all glass aquariums and not knocking them at the time, but the actual old style with the metal framing. The first one I first saw–

Ted: Metal frames.

Matt: Metal frames. When I first saw Custom Aquariums aquarium ingenious, I was going to say, “Oh, plastic.” That’s the first thing that popped in my mind. Then she tells, “Aluminum framing.” That was it. That’s when I said, “Oh gosh, this is it. I got to get it.” Tell me a little bit about the construction and what you guys go through to make one of these things.

Ted: At Custom Aquariums, we like to say that we use superior engineering, superior materials, superior fabrication techniques, and superior design. All those things come with some meaning to them. The materials we use, Matt was describing the anodized aluminum frames. This is a marine grade aluminum. This is what the Navy uses to build piers out of to go in the harshest environments that they actually have their ships and so forth then.

The stuff is not going to corrode, it’s very hard to scratch, it’s very hard to damage, it’s going to last forever. We call our aquariums, you get to see this little sticker down here, he hasn’t peeled it off yet. It says lifetime aquarium, because we actually stand behind our aquariums for the lifetime of the aquarium, or your lifetime. As long as that aquarium is sitting on one of our stands, this is one of our stands, it’s one of the majestic style stands.

You take care of it the way that we ask you to take care of it, we guarantee this for life. Matt comes to us five years from now, 10 years from here, 20 years from now, and says that aquarium popped a leak, we’re going to fix it. Some things you can’t see, and I think probably while we’re doing the video, I might cut out and show you some things, but we bevel all the edges and polish all the edges of all the glass and all frames of our tanks.

The edges that you can see, like these edges here and the edges that you can’t see, the ones that are underneath the frame, because an unpolished edge has got what’s called microfractures in it. Those microfractures are the points of failure on an aquarium. If you ever see an aquarium that cracks from underneath the frame and goes up and comes back down, that means that in the bottom edge of that glass was a microfracture and the pressure started breaking it there.

The way you cut glass is you etch it, you damage the glass, and all you got to do is tap it and it’s going to break at that point. We polish all the edges, just for that matter. The entire aquarium system, including our filtration and the framing and the overflows and the emitters, all that right now has about 14 patents with more on the way. Just the framing system itself has got four different patents. We have put a lot of thought and effort in how to create a better aquarium. We believe that we’ve got it.

Matt: Well, it’s beautiful, the minute I opened the crate and saw it, I was floored. Especially the bevels, the bevels I told him when I first got it, I was staring at the bevel, I couldn’t believe how beautiful they were. You guys do a magnificent job. The thing about Ted is, when I first went to Custom Aquariums after seeing the aquarium on Jenny’s video, I looked a little bit into Ted, the guy I was talking to you on the email.

Ted has his own YouTube channel [chuckles] called Ted’s Fishroom. Once I started watching, I was a little bit hooked. I’ve been stalking you a little bit. You know that. Watching all the trips that he makes all over the world, Peru, Colombia, Mexico, and all your videos of looking for fish, tropical fish, talk a little bit about Ted’s Fishroom.

Ted: Ted’s Fishroom has been around for over a decade, on YouTube, there’s over 300 videos. I’ve put a lot of time and effort and a lot of my education background into what I produce for Ted’s Fishroom. I’ve tried very hard to make the content on Ted’s Fishroom to be something that can be very helpful to people in the aquarium hobby. I’m very proud of what I’ve managed to get to do with through Ted’s Fishroom for 12 years.

Then about two years ago, I had the opportunity to come to work for Custom Aquariums full time. When that happened, the amount of time I had available to work on Ted’s Fishroom was significantly reduced. Probably the video series on Ted’s Fishroom I’m most proud of is the Columbia 2016. I went to my first trip to Columbia and shot lots and lots of footage. Underwater video was fantastic.

I came back and I produced 20 episodes, 10 to 15 minutes series episodes, about those two weeks in Columbia and it was an awful lot of work. Right when that was ending is when I got the job offer to come work and make videos and make testimonial videos and work with people like you and do a whole lot more for Customer Aquariums. Since then, the production in Ted’s Fishroom has been significantly less.

For that, I apologize, except to the point of saying that I’m pretty happy with what I’m doing with Custom Aquariums. Maybe I’ll get back into Ted’s Fishroom in a big way someday, but no promises.

Matt: I had a little taste of it today when we went to Fire freaking Murphy. After seeing your Colombian videos, how you photograph the fish underwater and all that, then you were doing here on Fire Streak, it’s pretty interesting. I like it.

Ted: Here’s what happened. I’m coming to North Carolina, there’s lots of really cool trout streams up here in the mountains. One of the things I like to do is I like to videotape fish underwater. I’d like to say that it is now very cold and the water in here is very cold. I wasn’t going to get in the water to film these fish. I have my underwater camera hooked to a selfie stick and then he’s watching me and filming me, thank you, go on and just stick this camera down in the water for 30 seconds to a minute and then pick up and see if I managed to catch a trout on it.

Matt: You did?

Ted: I did. I managed to get a trout. I’ve never filmed a trout underwater. I’ve always wanted to film a trout underwater and someday I’ll be in a river out west where there’s a million trout per mile but here I got one little trout for about five to 10 seconds. That’s good enough.

Matt: Well, I love what you did. I love Ted’s Fishroom. I’m glad I got a picture of it here at Fire’s creek. I want to personally say thanks to Ted of course for– Somebody in my position when you have a dream in your career. Like you said there’s a lot of art work around here. As an artist you want somebody who will see your vision, actually step inside your head and actually be on the same level as you.

When I came to you with this idea and you did that I mean it was an artist’s dream. I really do, from my heart, want to thank you for giving me this opportunity. I want to thank Custom aquariums, Bob, Mark Beevers, Adam, all these guys. Thank you so much giving us the opportunity to do this. I want everybody to stick to me, make sure you subscribe. Hit the bell icon, so you could get our next videos and watch what we do with the rain forest exhibit. Thank you Ted and Custom aquariums.

Ted: You’re welcome.

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