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Skilled trades

Aaron

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So I am looking for any insight any of you may have on some of the trades. I am done my university Science degree and am looking to go for a trade next. I have four possible choice areas and am trying to narrow it down to one field (the colleges I apply to will also help in doing it as some don't offer certain trades). Everyone else around me has offered their opinion and I figured I might as well hear what people on here have to say on the pros/cons.

The trades I am looking at are:
~Heavy Duty Mechanics
~Welding
~Electrician
~Plumbing

Thanks. :cowboy:
 

hillsdown

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Well first off Aaron congrats on your degree, that is quite an accomplishment and you and your family should be very proud.. :clap:

Those are all very good trades and definitely a demand for them. My father was/is a master electrician (retired now) and had his own business .He was always in demand and was used regularly by both RCMP branches in the city, as well as contracts with the college and City Hall , the Museum etc. As with any business if you build a reputation of being honest and reliable you will always have customers..

You must choose which one you are most interested in though, something that you will enjoy doing.

Good luck with what ever you choose.. :tiphat:
 

Toby L.

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If you go into heavy duty mech. you can work on your own stuff, my brother went to school for that and my dad would bail him out of jail when he needed something fixed on the farm. :D
 

Angus Cowman

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welding you camake good money only thing is if ya wanna make the big $ ya gotta travel and be gone but you might work 6-7 months a yr and make $100K or better with all your expenses pd but that is working 7 days a week 12hrs a day
last welding job I went on was 10 yrs ago we were making $38 pr hr working 7-12s and drawing $420 a week per diem
Live off you per diem and put the rest in the bank
but you are gone alot
heavy mechanics is good also the money isn't as good but it is steady and always a demand
 

Red Bull Breeder

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You will always have work if you are a plumber, somebody has always got a leak or a drain stopped up. I was a plumbers helper for a while, plumbing sucks. Electricans are pretty handy to have around and it pays pretty good and it doesn't take near as many tool as plumbing or mechanicing. Welding would be great because i would just like to be good at it.
 

Jogeephus

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If I was going to start over again I would definitely go into heating and air conditioning. Around here, this is a good field and is somewhat recession proof cause its not completely tied to the construction industry. Service work would definitely keep you busy if you don't mind working odd or long hours. I know a fella that went into this and he is making gobs of money. He works all the time but don't we all? Another recession proof tech job would be a medical lab tech. Excellent pay if you don't mind being indoors all the time.
 

1982vett

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Jogeephus":1m3lx08t said:
If I was going to start over again I would definitely go into heating and air conditioning. Around here, this is a good field and is somewhat recession proof cause its not completely tied to the construction industry. Service work would definitely keep you busy if you don't mind working odd or long hours. I know a fella that went into this and he is making gobs of money. He works all the time but don't we all? Another recession proof tech job would be a medical lab tech. Excellent pay if you don't mind being indoors all the time.
The only problem with residential HVAC is architects that think the attic is the perfect place for the units. :shock: (In the south they go in the attics because we don't have basements.)

Plumbing is probably the easiest to grasp. All you have to know is:
  • Payday is Friday
  • Chit don't flow uphill
  • Don't pick your nose
:lol:
 

Jogeephus

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1982vett":3ihm7vjw said:
Jogeephus":3ihm7vjw said:
If I was going to start over again I would definitely go into heating and air conditioning. Around here, this is a good field and is somewhat recession proof cause its not completely tied to the construction industry. Service work would definitely keep you busy if you don't mind working odd or long hours. I know a fella that went into this and he is making gobs of money. He works all the time but don't we all? Another recession proof tech job would be a medical lab tech. Excellent pay if you don't mind being indoors all the time.
The only problem with residential HVAC is architects that think the attic is the perfect place for the units. :shock: (In the south they go in the attics because we don't have basements.)

Plumbing is probably the easiest to grasp. All you have to know is:
  • Payday is Friday
  • Chit don't flow uphill
  • Don't pick your nose
:lol:

A friend of mine's father does both plumbing and A/C work. He seems to do pretty well with it too. You are right though, getting in an attic when its 100 degrees outside would be pretty tough but I'm pretty sure there aren't any yellow jackets, bumble bees, hornets, briars, snakes or other vermin in a hot attic. Besides that, there isn't any reason you couldn't do the attic work at night when it cools down some. Besides that, I think hot attic work is consindered non reportable income which by federal law is not taxable. Or at least that's what I heard.
 

Red Bull Breeder

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I don't no about other states but getting a master plumbers license in Arkansas takes about 5 years you got to go to school to be helper go from helper to journey man 5 years apprenticship as a journeyman to even test for a master plummers license.
 

backhoeboogie

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I was an apprentice I & C tech when I started in night school welding. After the stick certification, I was working on heli-arc. It was about then I broke out as an I & C tech so I dropped the welding. But having the skills has paid off many times over. Then I started night school engineering. The rest is history.

The company sent me to many ASME trainings and seminars. ASME B31.1 is awesome for someone who wants to know the reality of metalugical properties.

If you can weld and weld good, you can build better equipment than you can buy. Look at the cattle chute discussion. The old saying is if you want a job done right, do it yourself.

Pipe line welders are knocking down well over a quarter million a year for the last three years. True they are putting in a lot of hours, but they are in very high demand right now. You read and hear all the garbage about how bad things are in the economy, then you go and listen to welders. Those who have been shop welding out back and now turning away more work than they can handle out of their own back yard.

If you don't actually go to work as a welder, you can always use the skill on your own projects.
 

Angus Cowman

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backhoeboogie":hrmqgmjm said:
I was an apprentice I & C tech when I started in night school welding. After the stick certification, I was working on heli-arc. It was about then I broke out as an I & C tech so I dropped the welding. But having the skills has paid off many times over. Then I started night school engineering. The rest is history.

The company sent me to many ASME trainings and seminars. ASME B31.1 is awesome for someone who wants to know the reality of metalugical properties.

If you can weld and weld good, you can build better equipment than you can buy. Look at the cattle chute discussion. The old saying is if you want a job done right, do it yourself.

Pipe line welders are knocking down well over a quarter million a year for the last three years. True they are putting in a lot of hours, but they are in very high demand right now. You read and hear all the garbage about how bad things are in the economy, then you go and listen to welders. Those who have been shop welding out back and now turning away more work than they can handle out of their own back yard.

If you don't actually go to work as a welder, you can always use the skill on your own projects.
welding and operating has always been good to me and has let me be in the postion that I am today only thing with both is the travel and it is hard to raise a family or hold one together when ya are gone all the time but if you are single and put your money away you can work till your are 40-50 and have everything pd for and sit back and relax on the farm and do a lil custom work on the side
My dad was a pipeliner so I know about not having a dad around and it was hard and then I turned around and did the same thing to my family and if you do get married I don't know of many operators or welders that chase the work that have stayed married
 

HerefordSire

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Aaron":39or2c6y said:
So I am looking for any insight any of you may have on some of the trades. I am done my university Science degree and am looking to go for a trade next. I have four possible choice areas and am trying to narrow it down to one field (the colleges I apply to will also help in doing it as some don't offer certain trades). Everyone else around me has offered their opinion and I figured I might as well hear what people on here have to say on the pros/cons.

The trades I am looking at are:
~Heavy Duty Mechanics
~Welding
~Electrician
~Plumbing

Thanks. :cowboy:

Why are you choosing the 4 fields and not others? Is a college degree required for the 4 fields?
 

grannysoo

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1982vett":1igeaxlp said:
Plumbing is probably the easiest to grasp. All you have to know is:
  • Payday is Friday
  • Chit don't flow uphill
  • Don't pick your nose
:lol:

And...... don't bite your fingernails.

I would go into hvac. You have many people in the hvac business, but all they want to do is new installations. Finding a true repair-man is like looking for chickens teeth. Everyone wants to sell new units.

As to working in hot attics, everyone around here will only do that before lunch. If your air breaks at 4pm in the evening and requires attic work, you won't get it. You'll always be put off till morning when it's cooler.

Minimum charge for someone to show up around here for hvac work is 75.00. Freon is being sold at 15.00 per pound when their cost is only 6.50 per pound. Parts mark-up is double at the minimum, most times tripled. Doesn't take many calls a week to make some pretty decent money.
 

1982vett

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grannysoo":32k13rx9 said:
1982vett":32k13rx9 said:
Plumbing is probably the easiest to grasp. All you have to know is:
  • Payday is Friday
  • Chit don't flow uphill
  • Don't pick your nose
:lol:

And...... don't bite your fingernails.

That's it, I knew don't pick you nose didn't sound right. :dunce:
 

Onthebit

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My husband is an Ironworker, welder....in high demand thought Im not so fond of their union. I am a Labourer, finnisher....I hate my union. (because they lump skilled and non skilled into the same pay rate) That said I work with a lot of the trades people in Industrial construction and from what I have seen, the Steamfitters/pipefitters make the most money of all the union trades. And they are in VERY high demand!
 

I luv herfrds

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Aaron I would go with plumbing. People always need water and sewer service.
I always liked welding though. Love them torches, wire, stick and tig. Learned to use a plasma torch. WOW that puppy was hot. :D
 

Just Curious

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Aaron... Congratualtions on your degree!
Before I pulled the plug on my career, I was a rocket scientist. I worked with some of most brilliant minds in the world...
A few important factors I noticed in my 30+ years were...
1. Common Sense can become inversely proportional as your mind becomes more brilliant...
2. A degree can open many doors for you regardless of what your degree is in....
3. There's not a great demand for rocket scientists in an Ag community...
I'd look at what you would "like" to do and then try to look at what it might be like 20 or 30 years down the road....
The trades that you mentioned and what other's have suggested are all great skills to know... learn and have fun with them all... Especially common sense.... :D
 

RD-Sam

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Aaron":2dvsw1ij said:
So I am looking for any insight any of you may have on some of the trades. I am done my university Science degree and am looking to go for a trade next. I have four possible choice areas and am trying to narrow it down to one field (the colleges I apply to will also help in doing it as some don't offer certain trades). Everyone else around me has offered their opinion and I figured I might as well hear what people on here have to say on the pros/cons.

The trades I am looking at are:
~Heavy Duty Mechanics
~Welding
~Electrician
~Plumbing

Thanks. :cowboy:

Heavy Duty Mechanics - If you are a real go getter you can make some money, if you are a laid back person that just does what they have to, you will make a living and that's it.

Welding - Better have an area close by that does aerospace or aircraft work, and needs a certified welder, otherwise you will just make a living. Or like the other person said, you will have to travel on a work crew and do work on pipelines and installs in plants to make any real money. You also have to consider the damage to your eyes if you make a carrier out of it, you will have some problems after doing it for 25 years or so.

Electrician - Most I know do make good money, jobs in plants usually pay pretty good and have good benefits. Wiring homes and such can be tough in the winter.

Plumbing - If I had to work on sewage lines I would quit in a heartbeat, guess doing new instalations wouldn't be bad, except the winter months.

If I had to choose from those, I think I would go with the electrician, but I'm a machinist, so what do I know. :lol2: I also do all the welding in the shop, which I hate doing after 28 years! I have also done mechanics work, it isn't for everyone. Don't know how to do plumbing, but I am about to get some crash courses on some projects coming up!
 

BeefmasterB

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Aaron - as a headhunter for the last 30 years I can tell you that as far as heavy mechanical goes, tractor/trailer transmisssion mechanics are in extremely high demand and will remain that way for a long time to come. But, almost all of them work for fairly large companies that offer some pretty good incomes and benefits. If you wanted your own business, HVAC is hard to beat - residential - and you could grow it however large of an operation you want.

To make that degree pay off, raise the bar and look at the top salaries for each area that you have considered, what those people do, and ask yourself if you would you enjoy doing it.
 
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