Twisted Hydrographic owner turns hobby into East Ridge business

Twisted Hydrographic owner turns hobby into East Ridge business

April 16th, 2013 by Shelly Bradbury in Business Around the Region

Eric Gulas holds a searchlight he covered with hydrographics in the basement of his East Ridge home.

Photo by John Rawlston/Times Free Press.

Name: Twisted Hydrographic Custom Concepts

Owner: Eric Gulas

Location: East Ridge

Service: The hydrographic process puts a protective, patterned coating on any object -- from snakeskin on a spotlight to camouflage on a gun.

Price: Varies depending on the size, shape and material of the object

How it got started: Gulas realized as a middle school student that making money isn't a 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. endeavor. At 12 years old he rented his video game collection to a neighborhood shop and made $300 a week - and he's been hooked on entrepreneurship ever since. When he learned about the hydrographic process, he realized he could turn it from a hobby into a business, so he built his own tank and experimented until he learned the nuances of the process.

Initial investment: $1,000

Process: Gulas heats up a 300-gallon tank of water, then places a thin sheet of specialized paper on the surface of the water. Once the paper is saturated, he slowly pushes the object down, into the paper and deeper into the water tank. The film adheres to the object and forms a coating that looks and acts much like the paint on a car.