Last Updated on May 2022
Curious to know what role a structural welder plays? A structural welder is an expert who helps create metal frameworks for bridges, buildings and skyscrapers.
Your work as a structural welder is to lay metal foundations to structures before further construction can take place.
Working as a structural career is an exciting career if you love dealing with metal since your work will primarily involve repairing trusses and beams and laying frameworks for columns and other structures.
You’ll get to work with construction companies, mining companies, aerospace industries, shipbuilders as well as oil and gas companies.
Educational Requirements for Working as Structural Welder
Working as a structural welder is demanding since there is usually little room for error. You have to know what to do and how to follow the architect’s blueprint. A simple misinterpretation can lead to irreversible damages at the later stages of construction, which is why structural welders require technical training.
Although employers usually look for different qualifications depending on the type of work, having certification to prove that you have formal training will boost your chances of landing the job. You might also require adequate knowledge in fields such as metallurgy and chemistry. Most employers, however, prefer working with structural welders who are good at mechanical drawings and mathematical interpretations.
Experience in structural welding is also an added plus, especially when looking to land big construction gigs such as skyscrapers, malls, or other massive types of structures. But, if you are just starting out, it is advisable to work your way up by starting with small manageable projects that aren’t as demanding as major construction gigs.
What are the Skills Needed for Structural Welders?
Think you’ve got what it takes to work as a professional structural welder? Structural welding is a highly rewarding job, especially once you get to see the results of your hard work and commitment upon the completion of the project. However, you must be patient enough to learn how to read and interpret the blueprints.
Remember, the plans act as the foundations for the buildings being constructed, meaning you have to be extra keen to note all the recorded details.
Caution is another skill that you will require as a structural welder. As a structural welder, you might find yourself working at great heights; you will need to be cautious enough when operating on risky areas.
Structural welders must always take adequate safety measures to ensure that they minimize or eradicate the chances of sustaining injuries. Always wear safety gear.
Also, your hand-eye coordination will need to be on point to succeed as a structural welder. You will also need to have the right level of endurance as well as physical strength since you will be dealing with potentially heavy metals.
Concentration is another skill that you must have as a structural welder. Remember, every move you make will count to the final outcome, which is why you must be fully concentrated whenever you are on site.
Ensure that you understand the blueprint and do exactly as stated to avoid redoing tasks once flaws become identified upon supervision.
Did you know that as a structural welder, you can work in any industry? The skilled trade industry is full of several opportunities, and since new buildings are always coming up, finding work as a structural welder should be fairly easy, provided you meet the employer’s requirements.
Infrastructure opportunities give welders a wide range of jobs to select from. Highly-rated TIG and MIG welders can land jobs with relative ease. However, you must be willing to train and increase your skillset when the opportunity arises. Relocating to the area of work is another possibility; hence you must be willing and ready to move with the job.
The Main Duties of a Structural Welder
Depending on the nature of work, the duties of a structural welder may vary. However, the basic tasks are similar to the various types of welding.
You will need to study the construction plan and gather the required tools to get the job done. Understanding the plan of action is crucial to your success as a structural welder since other parts of construction cannot proceed is the metal structure is not well laid.
Once done with your welding tasks, you will want to clean the metal surfaces, leaving them looking neat and well-polished to allow for other construction tasks. Your most crucial work task is to follow the instructions of the supervisor and ensure that you follow the blueprint to the latter.
Below are your main tasks as a structural welder
Blueprints are an integral part of structural welding, which is why you must be well skilled in studying them to the last decimal. Your work as a structural welder is to ensure a building or structure remains sturdy throughout its entire lifetime, meaning you must have adequate knowledge on how to interpret and actualize every detail.
While interpreting architectural blueprints is something you will learn at a technical school, you will need to have top-notch measurement and mathematical skills. Skill in math is vital since you will be dealing with a lot of fractions, as well as common fractions. Measurement skills will help you to understand the lines, as well as the specific weld joints that are integral to the structure of the building.
Organize the Team Effectively
You can’t possibly work on an entire blueprint single handedly; you must have a well-skilled and highly-motivated taskforce to help you in the construction.
A structural welder must understand the importance of following the steps and procedures in a blueprint without skipping any detail. Once you get assigned to a specific task, you must be fully committed to performing your best job to avoid letting your team down.
Once the blueprint is perfectly understood and the team fully assembled, it is time to proceed to the main part of the job, which is welding like the pro you are. Other construction professionals will rely on the work you do as a structural welder; you cannot afford to let the entire team down. Be ready to arc weld to create stable base material.
Always ensure that your tools are well stored and prepared before working on a specific task on site.
You must be prepared to work in elevated areas, especially if working on a skyscraper or a lofty building. Since you will work with steel beams, the risk of sustaining injuries through cuts falls, and burns are also high, which is why you need to put all your safety training to good use when out working on your structural welding project.
Always put on Welding safety gear and never assume any safety tips you might have learned during training.
Structural welding is a lucrative career that will give you great opportunities not only to earn but also to contribute to quality infrastructure. Experience and skill are both vital to your success as a structural welder.
Remember to start small as you work your way up the huge buildings to acquire the skills required for heavy construction tasks. The world is yours to take over!