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Career profile Fabrication Welder

Also known as Aluminum Welder, Assembly Line Brazer, Brazer, Fabrication Welder, Fabricator, Maintenance Welder, Solderer, Sub Arc Operator, Welder, Wirer

Fabrication Welder

Also known as Aluminum Welder, Assembly Line Brazer, Brazer

Interests Profile
  • Realistic
  • Conventional
  • Investigative
Pay Range
$30,640 - $66,250 (annual)
Required Skills
  • Monitoring
  • Critical Thinking
  • Quality Control Analysis
Knowledge Areas
  • Production and Processing
  • Design
  • Mechanical
Core tasks
  • Analyze engineering drawings, blueprints, specifications, sketches, work orders, and material safety data sheets to plan layout, assembly, and operations.
  • Weld components in flat, vertical, or overhead positions.
  • Operate safety equipment and use safe work habits.
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What does a Fabrication Welder do?

Fabrication Welders use hand-welding, flame-cutting, hand-soldering, or brazing equipment to weld or join metal components or to fill holes, indentations, or seams of fabricated metal products.

What kind of tasks does a Fabrication Welder perform regularly?

Fabrication Welders are often responsible for overseeing or executing some or all of the following tasks:

  • Weld components in flat, vertical, or overhead positions.
  • Operate safety equipment and use safe work habits.
  • Examine workpieces for defects and measure workpieces with straightedges or templates to ensure conformance with specifications.
  • Recognize, set up, and operate hand and power tools common to the welding trade, such as shielded metal arc and gas metal arc welding equipment.
  • Select and install torches, torch tips, filler rods, and flux, according to welding chart specifications or types and thicknesses of metals.
  • Weld separately or in combination, using aluminum, stainless steel, cast iron, and other alloys.
  • Connect and turn regulator valves to activate and adjust gas flow and pressure so that desired flames are obtained.
  • Ignite torches or start power supplies and strike arcs by touching electrodes to metals being welded, completing electrical circuits.
  • Monitor the fitting, burning, and welding processes to avoid overheating of parts or warping, shrinking, distortion, or expansion of material.
  • Mark or tag material with proper job number, piece marks, and other identifying marks as required.
  • Determine required equipment and welding methods, applying knowledge of metallurgy, geometry, and welding techniques.
  • Prepare all material surfaces to be welded, ensuring that there is no loose or thick scale, slag, rust, moisture, grease, or other foreign matter.
  • Chip or grind off excess weld, slag, or spatter, using hand scrapers or power chippers, portable grinders, or arc-cutting equipment.
  • Preheat workpieces prior to welding or bending, using torches or heating furnaces.
  • Develop templates and models for welding projects, using mathematical calculations based on blueprint information.
  • Guide and direct flames or electrodes on or across workpieces to straighten, bend, melt, or build up metal.
  • Position and secure workpieces, using hoists, cranes, wire, and banding machines or hand tools.
  • Detect faulty operation of equipment or defective materials and notify supervisors.
  • Align and clamp workpieces together, using rules, squares, or hand tools, or position items in fixtures, jigs, or vises.
  • Melt and apply solder along adjoining edges of workpieces to solder joints, using soldering irons, gas torches, or electric-ultrasonic equipment.
  • Clean or degrease parts, using wire brushes, portable grinders, or chemical baths.
  • Repair products by dismantling, straightening, reshaping, and reassembling parts, using cutting torches, straightening presses, and hand tools.
  • Grind, cut, buff, or bend edges of workpieces to be joined to ensure snug fit, using power grinders and hand tools.
  • Check grooves, angles, or gap allowances, using micrometers, calipers, and precision measuring instruments.
  • Operate metal shaping, straightening, and bending machines, such as brakes and shears.
  • Set up and use ladders and scaffolding as necessary to complete work.
  • Hammer out bulges or bends in metal workpieces.

The above responsibilities are specific to Fabrication Welders. More generally, Fabrication Welders are involved in several broader types of activities:

Handling and Moving Objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
Controlling Machines and Processes
Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
Getting Information
Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

What is a Fabrication Welder salary?

The median salary for a Fabrication Welder is $44,190, and the average salary is $46,690. Both the median and average roughly describe the middle of the Fabrication Welder salary range, but the average is more easily affected by extremely high or low salaries.

Many Fabrication Welders earn significantly more or less than the average, due to several factors. About 10% of Fabrication Welders earn less than $30,640 per year, 25% earn less than $36,140, 75% earn less than $53,820, and 90% earn less than $66,250.

Between the years of 2020 and 2030, the number of Fabrication Welders is expected to change by 8.2%, and there should be roughly 49,200 open positions for Fabrication Welders every year.

Median annual salary
$44,190
Typical salary range
$30,640 - $66,250
Projected growth (2020 - 2030)
8.2%

What personality traits are common among Fabrication Welders?

Interests

Career interests describe a person's preferences for different types of working environments and activities. When a person's interest match the demands of an occupation, people are usually more engaged and satisfied in that role.

Compared to most occupations, those who work as a Fabrication Welder are usually higher in their Realistic interests.

Fabrication Welders typically have very strong Realistic interests. Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Values

People differ in their values, or what is most important to them for building job satisfaction and fulfillment.

Compared to most people, those working as a Fabrication Welder tend to value Support, Working Conditions, and Relationships.

Most importantly, Fabrication Welders moderately value Support. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees.

Second, Fabrication Welders moderately value Working Conditions. Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions.

Lastly, Fabrication Welders moderately value Relationships. Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment.

Psychological Demands

Each occupation brings its own set of psychological demands, which describe the characteristics necessary to perform the job well.

In order to perform their job successfully, people who work as Fabrication Welders must consistently demonstrate qualities such as attention to detail, dependability, and integrity.

Below, you'll find a list of qualities typically required of Fabrication Welders, ranked by importance:

Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Independence
Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.

What education and training do Fabrication Welders need?

Working as a Fabrication Welder usually requires a high school diploma.

Fabrication Welders need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with this occupation.

Educational degrees among Fabrication Welders

  • 18.6% did not complete high school or secondary school
  • 46.3% completed high school or secondary school
  • 23.4% completed some college coursework
  • 8.7% earned a Associate's degree
  • 2.5% earned a Bachelor's degree
  • 0.4% earned a Master's degree
  • 0.2% earned a doctorate or professional degree

Knowledge and expertise required by Fabrication Welders

Fabrication Welders may benefit from understanding of specialized subject areas, such as production and processing, design, or mechanical knowledge.

The list below shows several areas in which most Fabrication Welders might want to build proficiency, ranked by importance.

Production and Processing
Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
Design
Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
Mechanical
Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Mathematics
Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
Administration and Management
Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.

Important Abilities needed by Fabrication Welders

Fabrication Welders must develop a particular set of abilities to perform their job well. Abilities are individual capacities that influence a person's information processing, sensory perception, motor coordination, and physical strength or endurance. Individuals may naturally have certain abilities without explicit training, but most abilities can be sharpened somewhat through practice.

For example, Fabrication Welders need abilities such as near vision, arm-hand steadiness, and control precision in order to perform their job at a high level. The list below shows several important abilities for Fabrication Welders, ranked by their relative importance.

Near Vision
The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
Arm-Hand Steadiness
The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
Control Precision
The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
Manual Dexterity
The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Problem Sensitivity
The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing that there is a problem.

Critical Skills needed by Fabrication Welders

Skills are developed capacities that enable people to function effectively in real-world settings. Unlike abilities, skills are typically easier to build through practice and experience. Skills influence effectiveness in areas such as learning, working with others, design, troubleshooting, and more.

Fabrication Welders frequently use skills like monitoring, critical thinking, and quality control analysis to perform their job effectively. The list below shows several critical skills for Fabrication Welders, ranked by their relative importance.

Monitoring
Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
Critical Thinking
Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.
Quality Control Analysis
Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
Active Listening
Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Operations Monitoring
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

What is the source of this information?

The information provided on this page is adapted from data and descriptions published by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration under the CC BY 4.0 license. TraitLab has modified some information for ease of use and reading, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment, and Training Administration has not approved, endorsed, or tested these modifications.

If you have any questions or suggestions about this information, please send a message.