How Much Do Welders Earn? - Welding Jobs Overview

How Much Do Welders Earn? - Welding Jobs Overview

Welding jobs are incredibly rewarding if you love hands-on work. Nothing else matters when you put your hood down and strike that arc. 

It’s just you and the weld puddle as you are moving the torch in pitch black with the arc illuminating your path. So many people love this feeling. Joining metal is one of a kind career. 

Photo by @underground_metal_works

But, there are hundreds of ways to approach a welding career. You can travel or work locally. You can be on the 30th-floor welding construction beam structural joints or make TIG precision welds on aluminum/magnesium aerospace vehicle parts. 

Photo by @ironworkersnyc40361

The best part? Welding pays well. 

Of course, the pay does depend on many factors. Your state, the welding job, your skills, if you work in hazardous conditions, and are you willing to travel.

This article breaks down the best welding jobs and explains the needed skills, certificates, level of difficulty, and of course, the US salary range for each.

Best Welding Jobs Explained

Welders are needed in industries of every stripe, but some jobs are far more prominent. Typically you’d work for a contractor hired by a company requiring welding services. But, you can also work directly for the company if they are large enough. 

Pipeline Welder

Pipeline welding is a lifestyle more than a career. If you are ready to travel, this job will take you across the entire US. But, there is also a need for local pipeliners. 

Many industries rely on pipeliners to keep the pipe infrastructures in good shape. But, the oil and gas industry has the most significant demand for skilled pipe welders. 

Photo by @arc._nation

Pipeliners work hard, often in unpredictable conditions. For example, you may be asked to work in Alaska outdoors for months at a time. This job requires high welding skills, experience, and physical endurance. 

Skilled welders who make it in the pipeline industry are respected in the welding community, and rightfully so. Not everyone can handle this line of work. But, on the other hand, as much as it may sound silly to a rookie in the welding world, pipeliners are happy with their career. You will meet some of the best guys and gals in the industry and form life-long bonds. 

Your peers become like a second family because you work whole days outside together and retreat to your workstations after. Since these jobs are often in remote locations, bonding with people and working together on improving your skills are the most common outside work activities.

Photo by @wade_brugger

Required Skills

Pipeliners must perform under pressure and handle pipe cutting, shaping, and welding. It’s necessary to have strong welding skills in all arc welding processes. However, stick welding is the most used welding method to join pipes, especially outside. 

Besides welding skills, you need to have good mechanical and mathematical abilities. You don’t need to be a scientist, but everyone expects you to understand fundamentals and calculate things on the go.

Needed Certifications

For almost all pipe welding jobs, you’ll need pipeline work experience and certifications. Most welding schools provide these certificates, but if you are self-taught or learned from a mentor, you’ll have to get certified.

You’ll need an American Welding Society’s (“AWS”) - “AWS Certified Welder certificate.” This certificate includes the SMAW Pipe AWS certificate, which is one of the most important certificates for pipeliners.

Photo by @bhakta__jake

Level of Difficulty

Pipe welding is difficult. There is no walking around the fact. It takes considerable skills, experience, and mental fortitude to endure harsh working conditions. Everyone counts on you to put up your welds today. Get the job done and go back to rest because tomorrow, you’ve got to do it again and again. 

Photo by @canoswelding

If you mess up, other contractors must wait for you to rework your welds. This can delay project completion times. Nobody is going to put up with repeated mistakes on large infrastructure projects. 

But, we don’t want to make this sound way too difficult. By the time you are ready to be a pipe welder, you will not be making mistakes. Nobody expects you just to jump in there and work like a wizard. It takes time to reach the level of pipeliners, and if you do, these jobs will accept you. Plus, at first, you’ll get an entry-level position and learn the ropes before everyone starts relying on you. So, don’t give up if this career path attracts you.

US Salary Range

According to EMSI labor market data, entry-level pipeliners earn $52,000, while the national median pay is $64,000. The top welders take home more than $100,000. Pipeliners put in work but also take the big bucks.

Source: https://www.ziprecruiter.com/Salaries/Pipeline-Welder-Salary

Welder Fabricator

Welder fabricators work in various industries, from transportation to large infrastructure. For example, you may fabricate cars, ships, bicycles, metal furniture, art sculptures, or anything else requiring multiple metal parts.

Photo by @welderman_alex

Once you obtain the necessary skills, you’ll always have job opportunities. Fabrication takes place everywhere in the world, and there are fabrication shops all over the USA. This line of work is exciting if you like to make different things. Pipeliners weld pipes, and that’s about it, but fabricators can work on new things all the time, depending on the shop.

Required Skills

Fabricators must have good knowledge of all arc welding processes. But, MIG and TIG are mainly employed thanks to their precision and weld appearance. Besides welding skills, you must be trained in blueprint reading and have a good eye for design and estimation dimensions.

Functioning well in a team is also necessary because metal fabrication often involves multiple operators working together. Fitting, cutting, shaping, bending, grinding, and finally, welding requires numerous processes to occur simultaneously in the shop for maximum efficiency. 

Photo by @jl_welds

You’ll need to have basic math and problem-solving skills. Plus, critical thinking is important. You’ll often have to figure things out on the fly. After all, fab shops rarely have the time to delay projects because something unexpected comes up. 

Needed Certifications

Depending on your role in the shop, you’ll need a minimum of an AWS Certified Welder certificate. But, you may also need machining, metal fabrication, or similar credentials. The more certificates you have, the better job you can land.

Level of Difficulty

Welding fabricators don’t have highly stressful jobs. Like everyone, you must pull your weight and get the job done. But, unlike pipeliners we discussed earlier, the work conditions are not as harsh. 

Most jobs are performed in a welding shop. So, you don’t have to travel or work outside.

Photo by @underground_metal_works

The fabricator’s job is likely to have a similar daily intensity. You shouldn’t be exposed to many overwhelming days, especially if you are not well compensated. So, the predictability of the job is what many people like. 

US Salary Range

Entry-level welding fabricators earn about $39,000, while the median salary in the US is $44,000. The most skilled fabricators earn above $75,000 a year. So, this career path allows significant pay improvements as you improve your skills.

Boilermakers

Boilermakers are extremely skilled welders and metalworkers. This is a responsible job that keeps the world's economies running. While the job title may look simple enough to a rookie in the industry, boilermakers make fundamentals required for most heavy industries.

Boilermakers construct, maintain, and repair pressure vessels for hydro, nuclear, chemical, cement, steel, glass, and other industries. Without these pressure vessels, generating energy or moving chemicals, liquids, and gasses would be impossible. Additionally, without boilermakers, water treatment plants and fertilizer production wouldn’t be possible.

Photo by @everyweld

Required Skills

Welding is only one of the skills boilermakers must have. Metal cutting, shaping, and welding are fundamentals. But, you need to have pipe welding, metal fabricating, auxiliary mechanisms, scaffolding, and crane knowledge. 

It’s necessary to have a high degree of mechanical experience coupled with exceptional welding skills. Boilers are highly pressurized structures, and their welds must not break. Math, blueprint reading, construction site experience, and teamwork are also crucial for a successful boilermaker career.

Photo by @vivointeriors

Needed Certifications

You should undergo dedicated boiler maker training and obtain the necessary welding certificates. The National Center for Construction Education and Research is the best place to start. They have a four-level curriculum that meets all the requirements for a boilermaker career.

Level of Difficulty

Boilermaking is a responsible job often performed on construction sites in harsh conditions. But, the most challenging aspect is that you’ll also have to work inside boilers, often in cramped spaces. 

Unlike fabricator welders, boilermakers have more unpredictable jobs. If you work for a contractor, they may send you to work in various locations. No two jobs will be the same. So, staying alert and focused does take an additional mental toll, especially considering how precisely boilers must be made.

Photo by @jl_welds

US Salary Range

Boilermakers earn quite well, even at the beginning of their careers. Entry-level jobs net about $53,000 annually, while the USA median pay is $65,000 for boilermakers. However, if you gain enough skills and experience, you could earn above $80,000 per year. 

Compared to fabrication, boiler making pays much better at entry-level positions. But, after gaining experience, these two are similar. Boilermakers do earn a bit more, but they also have far more responsibility and fewer job opportunities.

Source: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes472011.htm

Construction / Structural Welder

Structural welders often work on construction sites of large projects. Sometimes, their career is referred to as metalworkers, but metalworking also involves ornamental metal shaping. The lines here are blurry because structural welding is a part of metalworking.

Does the thought of working on bridges, rails, dams, freeways, and high-rise buildings excite you? If the answer is yes, this may be a welding career for you.

Steel beams, rebar, columns, girders, fire escapes, elevators, and all other structural elements are welded, shaped, cut, fitted, and bolted by structural welders. This job will have you traveling a lot, but it’s also possible to work locally if you find a good contractor that only works in your area.

Photo by @yeti_welding

Required Skills

To be a structural welder, it's necessary to be relatively physically fit and comfortable working with heights. This job requires moving or carrying heavy materials and working on high floors welding off of scaffolds and other temporary structures.

You need to have essential structural knowledge and arc welding skills. Construction welders often use a stick welding process, thanks to its portability, deep penetration, and ability to handle windy conditions. But, sometimes MIG or TIG welding are necessary too.

Photo by @yungmaurice_

Needed Certifications

Structural steel welding certificates and the AWS Certified Welder certificate are often necessary. But, some jobs may employ you even if you are uncertified and help you get the required certificates. 

Level of Difficulty

Structural welding is not very delicate, so welding itself is not the most difficult part about the job. But, the work environment is what’s challenging. Most of the time, you’ll be working from construction site to construction site. No two sites will have the same conditions. 

Sometimes, you’ll be working on the ground floor welding parts other construction workers take higher; other times, you’ll be 50ft high, working at the spot of the structure. Construction sites may be so large that just walking from one part to another could get you exhausted, especially with full gear under the scorching sun. So, get familiar with what work feels like in construction before considering this career. 

Photo by @joe_ignone

US Salary Range

Structural welders often start with $40,000 a year, while the median structural welder USA salary is $54,000. But, if you work your way to the top, you could earn more than $80,000. 

Construction welders are in demand, and it’s unlikely that you’ll ever be out of the job. This work is tough to automate, and every city or US state will always have at least one large project, if not many more, at all times.

Aerospace Welding

Do you like planes and helicopters? Of course you do. Who doesn’t? Oh, and do you like experimental NASA or SpaceX vehicles? Satellites? Rockets? 

Yeah, we already know the answer. 

Aerospace welders have some of the most exciting careers there are. They create, maintain, and repair complex aircraft and space vehicles. 

Source: https://waterwelders.com/what-is-aerospace-welder/

Did you know that NASA’s Apollo rocket, Saturn V, that landed on the Moon was partially hand welded? At the time, the very best welding engineers worked their tails off to create a magnificent piece of engineering. Today, aerospace welders do the same. 

SpaceX’s Starship that’ll take the first-ever humans on Mars is also welded by hand, as are many more spacecraft.

This is a highly responsible, developing career. It’s also a field where most welding is automated due to safety concerns. Still, running welding robots requires welding engineers, and many repair welding jobs cannot be efficiently automated. There is still a lot of need for skilled manual welders.

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon Resilience for NASA SpaceX’s Crew-1 mission are seen inside the SpaceX Hangar at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Nov. 9, 2020, before rollout to Launch Pad 39A.
Credits: SpaceX

Required Skills

Aerospace welders need a large arsenal of skills. Most jobs require formal welding education, and welding and mechanical engineers with bachelor's or master degrees have an advantage. Since there aren’t many job openings in aerospace fields, getting a degree is well worth it if this is a career that sparks your interest.

However, you can still make it in this field, even if all you have is a high school degree. But, it’s far more challenging than joining pipeliners, construction, or fabrication welders.

To work as an aerospace welder, you need to know the metallurgy of titanium, aluminum, magnesium, gold, nickel, and other specialty alloys. Plus, having in-depth knowledge of all welding processes is a big plus. This includes friction and laser welding beside standard arc welding processes like TIG, which is a must.

Steps in Metallurgical Process
Source: https://byjus.com/chemistry/processes-of-metallurgy/

Needed Certifications

At the very minimum, you need to pass the AWS D17.1 certificate for fusion welding of aerospace applications. But, you are likely to need additional certificates based on the type of job you do and the employer. You may also need to undergo additional security screening because aerospace contractors often adhere to strict standards.

Source: https://pubs.aws.org/p/1087/d171d171m2010-amd1-specification-for-fusion-welding-for-aerospace-applications-historical

Level of Difficulty

Aerospace welding is delicate and requires utmost precision. However, this job is not grueling, backbreaking work like construction or pipe welding. Still, welding airplanes or other flight vehicles is mentally taxing, especially considering the most demanding weld inspection your welds need to pass.

You may also need to travel often depending on the kind of job you get. But, stationary work is also available. You can work in airports, aircraft manufacturing facilities, space vehicle production, and many other different setups; each has its pros and cons.

Large Range Welding Chamber
RCW-AEROSPACE  MODEL: RCW-3
Source: https://www.rcw-aerospace.com/AboutOurWeldingChambers.html

US Salary Range

The average US aerospace welder salary is about $57,000 according to comparably.com, but depending on the job you do, you could earn much more. Many aerospace welding jobs on indeed.com offer above $70,000. These jobs often come with a full range of benefits and employment guarantees.

Sheet metal Welder

Sheet metal welders often work in fabrication shops, but they specialize in sheet metal welding, bending, cutting, and shaping. But, they also weld roofs, air ducts, vents, and form HVAC air systems.

This line of work allows you to specialize in one field too. Since industries of every stripe depend on thin sheet metal, you can get really good at welding certain elements and progress in your career. For example, if you specialize in HVAC duct welding, you’ll get a lot more work going your way. 

HVAC duct design software with CFD from SimScale
Source: https://www.simscale.com/blog/2019/06/hvac-duct-design-software/

Required Skills

Sheet metal welding professionals must have TIG and MIG welding skills. Knowing how to manage heat input is crucial to avoid metal distortion. So, you’ll need at least some previous experience before breaking into this field.

This is especially true when welding stainless steel sheets of metal. Since stainless steel retains heat, it’s easy to warp or reach the temperatures where carbon precipitation occurs. As a result, the stainless steel can lose corrosion resistance, which can completely ruin the welded part.

Additionally, basic math and geometry are necessary to quickly decide how to shape sheet metal products. 

Source: https://www.westermans.com/blog/guide-to-welding-stainless-steel/

Needed Certifications

You must be well versed in AWS D.9.1 sheet metal welding code. But, having an AWS certificate is often needed to get the job. 

Level of Difficulty

The level of job difficulty can vary for sheet metal welders. If you work in a fab shop shaping the same sheet structures, your workday will be less stressful but more mundane. But, if employed by contractors on construction sites, you’ll often work in different environments.

This job often requires standing for prolonged periods and making a lot of welds in your shift. If you are a factory sheet metal worker, you’ll make hundreds of welds daily. So, while the manufacturing role is not very stressful, enduring the sheer volume of work is challenging.

US Salary Range

According to ZipRecruiter, sheet metal welders earn about $48,000 per year on average. But, as you climb the ladder and get more experience, you could earn about $65,000 annually.

Source: https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes472211.htm

Nuclear Power Plant Welder

Working in the nuclear power plant industry is one of the toughest and most challenging welding career paths to take. Naturally, this industry has the most strict codes and standards. Everything is done by the book, and there is no room for error. None.

Nuclear welders, as popularly referred to, are welders and boilermakers with the highest skills in the welding industry. They weld pipes, pressure vessels, and other structures necessary for nuclear power plant energy production. Additionally, nuclear welders maintain and repair these structures as needed. But, these welding professionals also weld nuclear-powered submarines and other marine vessels. Sometimes, it’s necessary to dive underwater to repair and install structures.

To be a nuclear welder, you must pass detailed law enforcement background checks. Depending on the job you do and the availability of sensitive, expensive, and dangerous radioactive equipment, you may also be under supervision. This is a hazardous profession and requires utmost security measures. The FBI may conduct a background check as a part of the evaluation of your access rights to nuclear plants. Additionally, if you wish to work for the U.S. Navy, constructing nuclear-powered submarines, you’ll need security clearance from the Department of Defense. You can learn more about accessing nuclear plants at the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission website.

Nuclear Power Plant
Source: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2022-01-31/europe-s-nuclear-power-plants-are-disappearing-just-as-energy-crisis-hits-hard

Required Skills

Nuclear welding professionals must have exceptional welding skills in all arc welding processes. Working on steam generators, reactor pressure vessels, coolant pumps and piping, and safety and valve valves require absolute precision and understanding of metallurgy.

Needed Certifications

You will need AWS certificates dictated by the job, and you may also need Worldwide Gas Association certifications. Plus, if the job requires underwater welding, you’ll need a certificate for commercial diving and a separate certificate for underwater welding. 

Photo by @pitweldu

Level of Difficulty

Nuclear welding is a difficult job. On top of having to meet strict standards for weld quality, you’ll have to work in adverse conditions and often under supervision. 

You will constantly work with engineers from numerous branches, read blueprints, and weld expensive, hard-to-replace equipment. But, while this all sounds difficult, you’ll have plenty of help. All of this supervision is also there to answer any questions you may have. 

The weld quality must be flawless. You’ll work closely with a welding inspector; every weld will be checked for quality. Additionally, many nuclear welding jobs note that you must be available in all shifts if necessary.

Case Study: Laser Welding a Nuclear Power Turbine Shaft
Engineers checking the buildup amount in comparison to the print requirements, to make sure we added enough material with the weld.
Source: http://alphalaser.com/2018/10/24/laser-welding-nuclear-power-turbine-shaft/

US Salary Range

Nuclear welders earn on average about $66,500, while the top welders earn more than $150,000. This is a challenging welding career, but it pays very well. If you’ve got the aptitude for welding, especially delicate, difficult-to-weld joints and materials, you should consider a nuclear career.

Military Support Welder

If you are interested in a military career but prefer to work with your hands, an army support welding career may be for you.

Military welders repair vehicles, weapons, steel structures built on site, and elements of the base. You’ll work on different vehicles and military equipment depending on which military branch you join. For example, navy military welders work on ships, while army welders work on tanks and transport vehicles.

You will have to join the military and go through training before getting a welding job. But, if this is something you already plan on doing, why not make a career? Plus, after your service, you can work as a civil welder. The experiences you gain as a military support welder can propel your civil career if you play your cards right.

Photo by @welderbrigade

Required Skills

Usually, no welding skills are necessary to enlist. But, having previous welding experience is a big plus. Young people who complete a short welding school course after high school, before enlisting and pursuing military welding, have a higher chance of success. The specific requirements may also depend locally, so check with your local enlisting military post for details.

Needed Certifications

While no certificates are needed to enlist, certifications are required to work actively. You can obtain these after your basic training. Normally, an AWS Certified Welder certificate will be good enough, but depending on your role, you may need to pass additional tests.

Level of Difficulty

Joining a military life requires mental and physical fortitude. So even if you want to work as a military support welder, you’ll have to go through extensive combat and physical training. 

The work itself may be unpredictable. You could be working in a local base or be shipped overseas. As an active-duty military support welder, you could also be sent on combat missions to weld in an active combat area. As you can imagine, that’s quite dangerous. So, you should discuss the particulars with the enlisting officer and consider the pros and cons of this career choice.

But, on the other hand, many people find this lifestyle thrilling. No two days are alike, and this keeps things interesting. 

Military Physical Training, Photo by @crossfit_tx_mpt

US Salary Range

According to indeed.com, military support welders earn around $58,800 annually on average. But, depending on your experience and role, you might make above $100,000 per year.

Underwater Welder

Underwater welding is incredibly challenging, but it’s also extremely rewarding for the right individuals. 

While many people assume that all underwater jobs are welding related, that’s not always the case. This field is actually called commercial diving, and underwater welders are a part of it. So, to weld underwater, you first need to become a commercial diver.

Underwater welders are some of the highest-paid welders in the world, especially if they perform SAT diving jobs. Saturation diving, or “SAT” for short, is too complex to explain in a brief career overview. But, SAT divers undergo a special compression process and live inside a compression chamber thousands of feet below sea level. They can spend weeks or months down there in pitch black ocean darkness. 

The oil and gas industry primarily employs underwater welders. If this job sounds interesting to you, welding underwater oil rig pipes is what you are likely to do. But, these jobs also involve working on ships, underwater research projects, nuclear, and HAZMAT diving.

Photo by @underwater_welding_reynart

Required Skills

First, you must be a competent diver. Being physically fit, agile, and naturally gifted for diving is necessary. Plus, you must be psychologically ready for this job. Diving in pitch black is hard for most people — being courageous is also a part of the job description.

While these jobs are in demand, there aren’t that many people pursuing them. So, you must be trained to perfection if you wish to be accepted, especially as an SAT diver. There are only a few thousand SAT divers in the world, so this is not an industry you can get into easily.

You’ll need to be competent in underwater welding, which is more challenging than surface welding. But, more importantly, you’ll have to have exceptional critical thinking skills. This is a difficult job that requires quick decision-making. One wrong move can mean life and death. Keep in mind that the underwater welding death rate is some of the highest in the world. Nearly 15% of people who choose this career don’t make it to their retirement.

SATURATION(SAT) DIVING CHAMBERS / LARS
Source: https://baroks.eu/Products/saturation-diving-chambers/

Needed Certifications

You first need to obtain a commercial diving certificate. Then, you can get certified by AWS D3.6 standards for underwater welding. But, depending on your job, you may also need certificates for HAZMAT work, first aid for hazardous marine life, and offshore survival certificates.

Source: https://www.tws.edu/blog/welding/what-certifications-and-licenses-do-welders-need/

Level of Difficulty

Underwater welding is one of the toughest occupations in the world. There are so many challenges in this career that it would take us writing multiple articles as long as this one to cover them. 

Essentially, this career demands diving and welding in dirty, dark waters. You could be welding structures with very little visibility while relying on umbilical to keep you alive. If anything goes wrong, death is hard to avoid. 

You should watch the documentary “Last Breath,” depicting a deep sea diver, Chris Lemons, struggling to survive after his life support is cut in pitch black bottom of the sea. Stranded and with just 5 minutes left of oxygen, Chris managed to survive what almost nobody else did. His story is not the only one, but he is one of the few that got out alive after a deep diving accident. Chris stars himself in the documentary, and much of it is real-life footage captured by his suit’s camera. It shows well just how dangerous real-life deep sea commercial diving really is.

Photo by @underwater_welding_reynart

US Salary Range

With all the associated dangers, commercial diving still attracts many people. After all, where else could you earn tremendous amounts of money while working something so fascinating that you could tell tales all throughout your retirement?

SAT divers can earn up to $45,000 a month. Not a year, a month! But, this takes experience, knowledge, and also some luck. You’ve got to be at the right place at the right time and know the right people. SAT diving is a small industry, so make sure you are networking hard. 

Underwater welders and commercial divers that don’t do SAT diving earn less. The average underwater welder salary is about $54,000, while best-performing guys and gals make about $100,000 a year. Remember, these are non-SAT jobs, meaning you don’t dive in deep sea waters. These are HAZMAT, marine, or nuclear underwater welding jobs where you are in relatively shallow waters. 

Source: https://www.bls.gov/oes/2019/may/oes499092.htm

Welder’s Life

Welding trade is one of the most exciting and developed careers you could pursue. No matter where you start, you could switch courses. For example, if you are a fabrication welder, you could re-certify as a boilermaker, if you acquire the necessary skills.

This job is not easy, but nothing worth doing is easy. Welding is inherently dangerous, especially in challenging conditions. However, hundreds of thousands of professional welders out there keep our world “joined.” We would return to the "stone age" without welding. There would be no cars, trucks, planes, ships, bridges, high-rise buildings, spacecraft, and ultimately, there would be no advanced energy industry. You can hardly have a rudimentary steam engine without welding, let alone an unimaginably complex nuclear power plant.

With welding trade comes a great sense of accomplishment if this is something you genuinely wish to do. Thankfully, it’s no longer expensive and difficult to “dip your toes.” Some people love welding as a hobby, and that’s completely fine! Why buy a costly BBQ when you can make it yourself?! 

Photo by @pitweldu

But, many people try welding once or twice, and deep down, they know that this is what they want to do for the rest of their life. That’s why everyone should at least try making that first welding bead. If you have never welded before but feel attracted to welding, you are not the only one. Many people share the same feeling. Luckily for us, welding is so accessible today that you can buy a multi-process welder (and try MIG/TIG/MMA) and a helmet for a relatively low cost. 

Here at YesWelder, we are trying to improve welding equipment accessibility to everyone by keeping costs reasonably low. So, if you are still on the verge of getting the first welder, please have a look at our welding machines. We have some of the best value welders on the market.

Photo by @hasanofsgarage

6 comments


  • David Evans

    I was a welder in the Gulf of Mexico during the early 80’s. That was the most enjoyable time of my work life. I got out of welding after 12 years. I retired two years ago after 30yrs in the medical field. Now, I’m an old man trying to get my hand back. Why, I don’t have an answer.


  • Nate Reeves

    Very detailed breakdown. Thanks.


  • Jeffrey Noya

    Ruby is right in her spirit of frustration. That’s why I wrote very seldom do you go in above entry level. They want the best at the cheapest they can get them at. Get a contractor License and go out on your own you’ll find the same when bidding on a job. It’s not who you know but who are you.


  • Jeffrey Noya

    As a welder with over 40 years of experience in mig, tig, stick, Heli arc that’s old school and Oxy acetylene. In almost all exotic metals. Cast or otherwise known as pot metal. Try to weld that without porosity.Very seldom do you go in above the entry level wage for that particular specific field. I have welded in almost all fields pipe, manufacturing, auto, aerospace, casinos slot machines, ag high-rise buildings. I’ve been certified AWS American welding Society CWB Canadian welding bureau and ISO 9001 which is an international welding certificate that qualifies you to weld in any country especially in high earthquake zones. Especially to the likes of Southern California San Andreas Fault in India Moscow ETC. Any place where there is a high level of potential for.an earthquake.


  • Ruby Wallis

    This article sounds like rainbows and unicorns. I was a woman pipewelder for 36 years. So much sexism bullying, and discrimatoon.


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