Fabrication and Welding

Fabrication and welding is a complicated process of joining two (or more) parts to make a specific product. It involves different materials, chemicals, equipment, and welding processes. Fabrication and welding professionals create bridges, skyscrapers, buildings, pipes, vehicle parts, food manufacturing equipment, plastic containers, tanks, and a whole lot more. These specialists are highly sought after in a wide range of industries. If you’re interested in a career as a fabrication and welding engineer or specialist, this guide can help you understand what the job entails.

Tasks of Fabrication and Welding Professionals

Although different specializations may result in varying job descriptions, fabrication and welding professionals are generally assigned to: This is by no means an exhaustive list of tasks. Each fabrication and welding worker – cutters, fitters, fabricators, sheetmetal worker, underwater welders, military equipment welders, etc. – follow very specific instructions for each project.

Requirements: Education, Certification and Skills

Those interested in this career can take a variety of welding courses, from 6-month welding basics programs, to a 4- to 5–year welding engineering degree. Regardless of length, welding programs include both hands-on practice and classroom lectures. Once formal education has been completed, students must look for an internship program, apprenticeship or any on-the-job training to acquire real-work experience. Basic welding certification is needed, but additional certification can be obtained after learning new skills or welding techniques.

Fabrication and welding professionals must be physically fit with great vision, manual dexterity and arm-hand steadiness. They must be proficient in chemistry, physics and mathematics. Ability to create drawings from welding CAD software is a plus, but not required. Other skills may be needed, depending on the type of job you wish to land.

Compensation & Career Advancement

Fabrication and welding specialists command high salaries. However, the compensation offered to you may depend largely on your chosen specialization, experience, work location and other factors. Most overseas positions offer better compensation packages and benefits.

Welding fabricators earn somewhere between $25,000 to over $100,000 per year. Generally, the more dangerous the position, the higher salary one receives. For example, those working in oil and gas companies would earn higher than those working on welding plants. Welding specialists, who obtain additional skills or spend years for a company,can be promoted as supervisors or quality assurance managers.

The great thing about this career path is that it is easy for someone who specializes in metal fabrication to switch to a new focus since the basic welding skills are used in almost every welding job. As such, career advancement would depend on how much new knowledge you acquire, how well you perform on the job and how far you’re willing to take your career.

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