I have created distros in the past. Mainly because the Ubuntu live disk does not have Boot-Repair installed. I use a program called Remastersys
. The program can be used to back up an existing system into a bootable iso or to create a custom distro.
Basically, I just set up a new partiton with Ubuntu, uninstall everything I don't want, install the things that I do want, such as Boot-Repair, antivirus scanner, etc., then create a live disk version of my new partition using Remastersys. Creating a distro is easy using this method. Whatever is installed on the partiton is also installed on the new live disk.
As far as monetization goes, people do not generally pay for forum use. Advertisers do, though.