If you’ve never watched “Tanked” on Animal Planet, you need to go watch it. Seriously. Go right now and watch.
The show follows Brett Raymer and Wayde King – two best friends, brothers-in-law and business parters – and their ventures with Acrylic Tank Manufacturing (ATM), a family-owned business and one of the nation’s best and most successful aquarium builders.
Located in Sin City, Raymer and King have built some of the most stunning, jaw-dropping aquariums ever constructed. The tanks feature intricate designs and layouts and can be found in restaurants, casinos, banks, hotels, museums, zoos and celebrity mansions – including those of countless high-profile athletes.
“It’s so crazy,” Raymer said on Ferrall on the Bench. “Fish tanks have brought me to some of the most major celebrities that you could ever imagine.”
Raymer has worked with Shaquille O’Neal, Pete Rose, Mike Tyson, Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade, Jorge Posada, David Wright and Bart Scott, among others. He is also currently negotiating with Dwight Howard, Peyton Manning and the WWE.
“We try to base the tank around their personality,” Raymer said. “Like Shaq, we did a Diesel truck. We did the whole front end of a Diesel truck. He actually cleared his whole schedule and hung out with us the whole entire three days. He’s the best. He’s like a big kid.”
Pete Rose, meanwhile, has a baseball-themed tank.
“It was such a trip,” Raymer said. “Growing up as a kid in the ’70s and ’80s, seeing Pete and then building a fish tank for him – what a great guy. He was really into it. He enjoys fish.”
Rose’s aquarium is shaped like home plate and has a replica of Riverfront Stadium, where he passed Ty Cobb to become the all-time hits leader.
“Old school,” Raymer said. “We had Pete Rose’s stats up there. We did batfish.”
Shane Victorino, on the other hand, is from Hawaii and likes to go night-diving. So his tank is Hawaiian-themed with corals that light up at night.
Sacramento Kings owner Mark Mastrov has a basketball-themed tank that is attached to a punching bag, as his wife likes to box as part of her workout.
Raymer obviously has immense talent. His designs – and the execution of those designs – are truly a work of art.
“It’s not only me,” he said. “It’s my family. We have a lot of fun.”
Once the tanks are built, they have to be serviced. It’s no different from hiring a lawn company to mow your lawn, Raymer explained.
Raymer has several more big projects in the pipeline, including one – potentially – with Dwight Howard.
“Dwight Howard wants something for his house, and we’re in negotiations with a couple of really big celebrities,” Raymer said. “Hopefully Dwight is as good as Shaq. He’s looking to do something like a snake-fish aquarium or something really cool.”
And then there’s Manning.
“There’s a good chance we can do something for the Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis,” Raymer said. “Good possibility. Peyton good with the kids.”