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Looking for advice, preferably from Pipe Welders.

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  • Looking for advice, preferably from Pipe Welders.

    Hey all,
    I'll start by simply introducing myself, and giving you a background on my career in welding and fabrication. My name is Keyton Brewer, and I am 20 years old about to hit 21. I took 2 years of welding fabrication classes in highschool, attended the SkillsUSA IL State competition and finished 8th out of 48. I was in the National Technical Honor Society, maintained a 4.0GPA in all my welding/fab classes. I passed my qualification test for structural 3G and 4G SMAW 7018. Basically to sum it up, I love welding and learning more and more about welding.
    When I graduated highschool I moved to California to help my father with his medical business, and then I eventually moved back to the midwest and am currently located in Indiana. I have worked at a trucking company and truck repair shop as a welder/fabricator and mechanic for two years.
    Now that I am approaching 21, I am starting to look out for the rest of my life, and where I want to be in the next 5 years. Obviously I know I NEED to be doing something involved in the Welding Industry. I love the work and the people in the business. The reason I am on here, typing away is because I would like some advice from the experienced professionals on which way they would go.
    I have been looking at heading to Tulsa, OK and attending the Tulsa Welding School for their Professional Welder and AOS programs. The past two years I have been setting money aside to go back to school, and now I am to the point where I think I can do it. My question is:
    - Is TWS as good as it appears? I know its one of the big three...
    - Is it worth $15k a course?
    - Where can I go after completion?

    I would like to end up in the Pipe Welding industry, this is something I have strived after since I started welding. I also believe it is something I can do, I just need more experience and skill under my belt. I know I need to start from the bottom, but where do I start, and where is the best location to go to? I am also interested in obtaining my CPWI, I feel it is something good to have on a resume, even if you are a welder?
    Once completion of my schooling, what do I need to get started and where should I look to get started?

    ALSO, if anyone is located around the Tulsa, OK area are there any welding shops looking for workers? I would like to find some part time, or full-time work while I am attending school.

    Thank you for reading,
    Keyton Brewer

  • #2
    Looking for advice, preferably from Pipe Welders.

    If your already a welder and fabricator screw the tulsa school of welding move to Alaska or Louisiana or north dakato and join the many newcomers in the growing oil and gas industry. You can start as a structual hand all ya need to do is pass 7018 plate test overhead and 6g then you'll get 28-32 an hour depending on fabricating skills... Then I guarantee within a years time if you apply your self your learn too fit and weld pipe ... Then your in the good money 34-40 an hour . Go get some ! I love making as much as white collar executives when I only have a high school education in the last 11 years my worst years income was 90k the best was 145k but that was gettn it I didn't do much else but work that year

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    • #3
      Looking for advice, preferably from Pipe Welders.

      Oh yeah and okies are ignorant and the 798 union is full of crooks

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by K-BWelding View Post
        - Is it worth $15k a course?
        - Where can I go after completion?

        Keyton Brewer
        I work with prob a half dozen young guys who did the welding school after high school and still owe $13,000+ on their schooling and now make 12 bucks an hour. There are lots of new welding jobs popping up almost everywhere with this shale gas drilling and if you want to travel there is money to be made. Heres one local to you.
        http://www.exterran.com/Careers/NorthAmerican 150098 ...Bob

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        • #5
          Hi, you may not be far from Chicago. Go to Local 597 union Hall and talk to them.
          I think they still have a welding hybred program that may work for you.
          Check this thread and go to post 7.
          http://www.millerwelds.com/resources...ght=union+shop

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          • #6
            Originally posted by drpipe View Post
            If your already a welder and fabricator screw the tulsa school of welding move to Alaska or Louisiana or north dakato and join the many newcomers in the growing oil and gas industry. You can start as a structual hand all ya need to do is pass 7018 plate test overhead and 6g then you'll get 28-32 an hour depending on fabricating skills... Then I guarantee within a years time if you apply your self your learn too fit and weld pipe ... Then your in the good money 34-40 an hour . Go get some ! I love making as much as white collar executives when I only have a high school education in the last 11 years my worst years income was 90k the best was 145k but that was gettn it I didn't do much else but work that year
            Just curious, when you go to these locations and want to get to work. How are you showing up, with a full rig, or do they supply the rigs? I know a friend of mine went up to Alaska the year he got out of H/S and he spent all this money to buy a truck and make a **** of a welding rig. He got up there, and they paid him for his rig and supplies, along with about 110k a year. Is that the approach to take, or work in slowly?

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            • #7
              It says your future welder is a TB302 diesel if you spend that kind of money for a bit more you can get a low speed diesel like a pro300. but maybe you have your reasons for the TB302.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by drpipe View Post
                If your already a welder and fabricator screw the tulsa school of welding move to Alaska or Louisiana or north dakato and join the many newcomers in the growing oil and gas industry. You can start as a structual hand all ya need to do is pass 7018 plate test overhead and 6g then you'll get 28-32 an hour depending on fabricating skills... Then I guarantee within a years time if you apply your self your learn too fit and weld pipe ... Then your in the good money 34-40 an hour . Go get some ! I love making as much as white collar executives when I only have a high school education in the last 11 years my worst years income was 90k the best was 145k but that was gettn it I didn't do much else but work that year


                i agree with moving down here to louisiana the only thing diferent that i would do is i would got to every contrac company you can find down here and fill out an app.you'll get lots of experience in different situations this way. most of the yards around here need welders badly the problem about working for just one is you only do what they have you do rather than if you was contracing you might be welding structural one day and be welding on the pipeline the next. you make real good money if you get on a laybarge and weld pipe you eat good and have lots of sitting around doing nuthing down time.another good thing about contracing is you get to meet lots of people and after a while you get your little black book filled with contact numbers this way when one company isn't in need of you you have your book to fall back on if you do a good job they will be calling you long before you will have to call them. so pack your cloths and come on down here and make some money.lol

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                • #9
                  I went a very similar route as you did, I'm 27 now, went to a regular 4 yr college for a while taking mech eng. decided it wasn't for me, and went to community college to take welding, then ended up getting a job as a tractor trailer mechanic for 4 years. Took a job at a shipyard here building nuclear subs, and still paying off the snap-on, and college bills, haha. The nice thing about this place is they have their own welding school, which they pay you to go through. Having already welded previously, I flew through their structural training and got sent right to pipe welding, and have been doing it ever since.

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                  • #10
                    Here you go KB, from a guy on the inside of NSG and PGL. The two major gas companies in the Chicagoland area, besides Nicor. We are hiring contractor left and right for pipe, but you have to do both steel and plastic, I know because I am company welder for NSG. Get into 597 and learn to weld 250 wall 12". The test to weld for us is the 12" butt with the 12" saddle/branch. If you can do that your golden anywhere you go. Not many other utilities use that test anymore.

                    Anyway, Chicago has a 20 year main replacement program and the welders are pulling in at least 125k. Get a rig, and buy a used Pipe Pro 304, don't even mess around with anything smaller if your serious. Get in with 597 and learn to pass that test, and you won't even have to leave to go anywhere else to find work.

                    You got questions, ask, I will and try to help you out.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      DRPIPE nailed it, i have this saying, i also use it in investing in the stock and bond market, "if you want to make money, then follow the welding rod", basically go to the locations booming in the energy business, search out the better corps. involved, then apply, once started as a welder, things will fall into place, this is one of the trades that are quickly noticed by the higher ups when there is an employee with exceptional skills and work ethics, many times there will be in house training available, far more valuable than being in the class room. work goes in cycles, right now this country is ready for a huge domestic boom in fossil fuel exploration, it would be a shame to miss out on the open door opportunity of this cycle, sitting in a class room. also as stated by our union guys, getting into the right union may suite you just fine. my opinion is to get your foot in the door now, you have enough skills, the work is there, go do the research as where to go. good luck to you, I wish the very best for you and your family. Kevin

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        if your gonna spend that kind of money on school, skip it get a rig and some pipe and learn it and take your 6g test, then you have papers in hand which would be a plus. you can go structural or o-beams then. im learning pipe now. i have 3 and 4 but you can always learn more

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by kevin View Post
                          DRPIPE nailed it, i have this saying, i also use it in investing in the stock and bond market, "if you want to make money, then follow the welding rod", basically go to the locations booming in the energy business, search out the better corps. involved, then apply, once started as a welder, things will fall into place, this is one of the trades that are quickly noticed by the higher ups when there is an employee with exceptional skills and work ethics, many times there will be in house training available, far more valuable than being in the class room. work goes in cycles, right now this country is ready for a huge domestic boom in fossil fuel exploration, it would be a shame to miss out on the open door opportunity of this cycle, sitting in a class room. also as stated by our union guys, getting into the right union may suite you just fine. my opinion is to get your foot in the door now, you have enough skills, the work is there, go do the research as where to go. good luck to you, I wish the very best for you and your family. Kevin
                          I just want to thank everyone for their words of advice, coming from professionals point of view. As you all know, everyone will pound you to go to school. I understand school is the building blocks to your education and future, but I believe in trades, sometimes you are better to work. I have a lot of background and experience in welding and fabrication, and I have spent some time on pipe. So I think I am going to continue my practice and building up a welding rig, and then get my foot in the door.

                          I have previously had an opportunity at the Local 597 PipeFitters as mentioned in a few of the above post. I had a bit of misfortune dealing with them, and ended up where I am today.

                          Now, that we have some things squared away and narrowed down. Who has some info on the current jobs and companies in the refinery industry, along with locations. To be real honest, my hope was to end up near the Texas/Oklahoma area, I have always loved it out there. But I will fly where the work takes me.

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                          • #14
                            i was up late the other night watching a one hour special on fox news, hosted by lou dobbs, the topic was "where are the jobs", apparently, there are many jobs to be had, most or if not all, in the skilled trades, our schools are leaning away from this, pushing for more white collar jobs, welding was one of the trades that was mentioned as a hard position to fill in this tv program, a company in Pennsylvania was having problems filling the job openings, all welding related, this company was interviewed by fox news, may by, do a search, this was very interesting, especially to a man in your situation. burn those rods up kid don't let this skill be lost as have many of our grand fathers have gone by the wayside.

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                            • #15
                              Williston North Dakota, Gillette wyoming, and Cheyenne wyoming area are all using welders with their own rigs on pipelines. their tests are simple: pass a 6g on the pipe sixe that they are using and you are good to go, if you can maintain quality welds. if you are gonna try pipelining, you will want a linclon pipeliner, SA-200, SAE-300 dc welder. normally they will have you running with 6010 bead rod and 7014. make sure you have a pancake. no pipeline welder welds with other than a pancake.

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