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Become A Fabricator

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Working As A Fabricator

  • $50,000

    Average Salary

What Does A Fabricator Do

Assemblers and fabricators assemble finished products and the parts that go into them. They use tools, machines, and their hands to make engines, computers, aircraft, ships, boats, toys, electronic devices, control panels, and more.

Duties

Assemblers and fabricators typically do the following:

  • Read and understand schematics and blueprints
  • Use hand tools or machines to assemble parts
  • Conduct quality control checks
  • Work closely with designers and engineers in product development

Assemblers and fabricators have an important role in the manufacturing process. They assemble both finished products and the pieces that go into them. The products encompass a full range of manufactured goods, including aircraft, toys, household appliances, automobiles, computers, and electronic devices.

Changes in technology have transformed the manufacturing and assembly process. Modern manufacturing systems use robots, computers, programmable motion-control devices, and various sensing technologies. These technological changes affect the way in which goods are made and the jobs of those who make them. Advanced assemblers must be able to work with these new technologies and use them to manufacture goods.

The job of an assembler or fabricator requires a range of knowledge and skills. Skilled assemblers putting together complex machines, for example, read detailed schematics that show how to assemble the machine. After determining how parts should connect, they use hand or power tools to trim, shim, cut, and make other adjustments to fit components together. Once the parts are properly aligned, they connect them with bolts and screws or weld or solder pieces together.

Quality control is important throughout the assembly process, so assemblers look for faulty components and mistakes in the assembly process. They help fix problems before defective products are made.

Manufacturing techniques are moving away from traditional assembly line systems toward lean manufacturing systems, which use teams of workers to produce entire products or components. Lean manufacturing has changed the nature of the assemblers’ duties.

It has become more common to involve assemblers and fabricators in product development. Designers and engineers consult manufacturing workers during the design stage to improve product reliability and manufacturing efficiency. Some experienced assemblers work with designers and engineers to build prototypes or test products.

Although most assemblers and fabricators are classified as team assemblers, others specialize in producing one type of product or perform the same or similar tasks throughout the assembly process.

The following are examples of types of assemblers and fabricators:

Aircraft structure, surfaces, rigging, and systems assemblers fit, fasten, and install parts of airplanes, space vehicles, or missiles, such as the wings, fuselage, landing gear, rigging and control equipment, and heating and ventilating systems.

Coil winders, tapers, and finishers wind wire coils of electrical components used in a variety of electric and electronic products, including resistors, transformers, generators, and electric motors.

Electrical and electronic equipment assemblers build products such as electric motors, computers, electronic control devices, and sensing equipment. Automated systems have been put in place because many small electronic parts are too small or fragile for human assembly. Much of the remaining work of electrical and electronic assemblers is done by hand during the small-scale production of electronic devices used in all types of aircraft, military systems, and medical equipment. Production by hand requires these workers to use devices such as soldering irons.

Electromechanical equipment assemblers assemble and modify electromechanical devices such as household appliances, computer tomography scanners, or vending machines. The workers use a variety of tools, such as rulers, rivet guns, and soldering irons.

Engine and machine assemblers construct, assemble, and rebuild engines, turbines, and machines used in automobiles, construction and mining equipment, and power generators.

Structural metal fabricators and fitters cut, align, and fit together structural metal parts and may help weld or rivet the parts together.

Fiberglass laminators and fabricators laminate layers of fiberglass on molds to form boat decks and hulls, bodies for golf carts, automobiles, and other products.

Team assemblers work on an assembly line, but they rotate through different tasks, rather than specializing in a single task. The team may decide how the work is assigned and how different tasks are done. Some aspects of lean production, such as rotating tasks and seeking worker input on improving the assembly process, are common to all assembly and fabrication occupations.

Timing device assemblers, adjusters, and calibrators do precision assembling or adjusting of timing devices within very narrow tolerances.

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How To Become A Fabricator

The education level and qualifications needed to enter these jobs vary depending on the industry and employer. Although a high school diploma is enough for most jobs, experience and additional training is needed for more advanced assembly work.

Education

Most employers require a high school diploma or the equivalent for assembler and fabricator positions.

Training

Workers usually receive on-the-job training, sometimes including employer-sponsored technical instruction.

Some employers may require specialized training or an associate’s degree for the most skilled assembly and fabrication jobs. For example, jobs with electrical, electronic, and aircraft and motor vehicle products manufacturers typically require more formal education through technical schools. Apprenticeship programs are also available.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, International (FMA) offers the Precision Sheet Metal Operator Certification (PSMO) and the Precision Press Brake Certification (PPB). Although not required, becoming certified can demonstrate competence and professionalism. It also may help a candidate advance in the profession.

In addition, many employers that hire electrical and electronic assembly workers, especially those in the aerospace and defense industries, require certifications in soldering.

Important Qualities

Color vision. Assemblers and fabricators who make electrical and electronic products must be able to distinguish different colors because the wires they work with often are color coded.

Dexterity. Assemblers and fabricators should have a steady hand and good hand-eye coordination, as they must grasp, manipulate, or assemble parts and components that are often very small.

Math skills. Assemblers and fabricators must know basic math and must be able to use computers, as the manufacturing process continues to advance technologically.

Mechanical skills. Modern production systems require assemblers and fabricators to be able to use programmable motion-control devices, computers, and robots on the factory floor.

Physical stamina. Assemblers and fabricators must be able to stand for long periods and perform repetitious work.

Physical strength. Assemblers and fabricators must be strong enough to lift heavy components or pieces of machinery. Some assemblers, such as those in the aerospace industry, must frequently bend or climb ladders when assembling parts.

Technical skills. Assemblers and fabricators must be able to understand technical manuals, blueprints, and schematics for a wide range of products and machines to properly manufacture the final product.

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Fabricator Career Paths

Fabricator
Maintenance Technician Foreman Superintendent
Construction Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Technician Foreman Supervisor
Warehouse Manager
5 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Technician Foreman Manager
Plant Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Technician Team Leader Operations Manager
Site Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Technician Team Leader Project Manager
Purchasing Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Technician Lead Technician Project Manager
Division Manager
8 Yearsyrs
Driver Electrician Owner
Construction Superintendent
9 Yearsyrs
Driver Dispatcher Logistics Coordinator
Logistics Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Driver Electrician Maintenance Manager
Facilities Maintenance Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Machinist Manufacturing Engineer Quality Engineer
Quality Assurance Manager
9 Yearsyrs
Machinist Shop Foreman Owner/Operator
General Contractor
5 Yearsyrs
Machinist Electrician Superintendent
Quality Control Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Delivery Driver Service Technician Shop Foreman
Shop Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Installer Numerical Control Operator Numerical Control Programmer
Computer Numerical Controller Supervisor
5 Yearsyrs
Installer Numerical Control Operator Tool And Die Maker
Mold Maker
6 Yearsyrs
Installer Welder Shop Foreman
Shop Lead
5 Yearsyrs
Assembler Numerical Control Operator Numerical Control Programmer
Lead Machinist
6 Yearsyrs
Sheet Metal Mechanic Pipe Welder Lead Welder
Lead Fabricator
5 Yearsyrs
Pipe Welder Lead Welder Lead Fabricator
Fabrication Supervisor
6 Yearsyrs
Pipe Welder Welding Supervisor Fabrication Supervisor
Fabrication Manager
8 Yearsyrs
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Fabricator Demographics

Gender

Male

80.9%

Female

9.9%

Unknown

9.1%
Ethnicity

White

65.1%

Hispanic or Latino

15.3%

Black or African American

10.7%

Asian

5.8%

Unknown

3.2%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

69.7%

French

4.5%

Polish

4.5%

German

3.0%

Carrier

3.0%

Hmong

3.0%

Chinese

2.3%

Portuguese

1.5%

Japanese

1.5%

Korean

1.5%

Russian

0.8%

Khmer

0.8%

Dutch

0.8%

Cherokee

0.8%

Mandarin

0.8%

Thai

0.8%

Irish

0.8%
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Fabricator Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

13.1%

The Academy

9.5%

Tulsa Welding School

8.0%

Universal Technical Institute

7.7%

Houston Community College

5.6%

A-Technical College

5.0%

Fox Valley Technical College

4.2%

Owens Community College

4.2%

Ferris State University

4.2%

Macomb Community College

3.9%

Western Technical College

3.9%

Antelope Valley College

3.9%

Trident Technical College

3.6%

Kirkwood Community College

3.6%

Pennsylvania State University

3.6%

University of North Texas

3.3%

Ashford University

3.3%

Full Sail University

3.3%

NASCAR Technical Institute

3.3%

Monroe Community College

3.3%
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Majors

Precision Metal Working

16.7%

Business

14.9%

Automotive Technology

9.1%

General Studies

7.3%

Fine Arts

4.8%

Criminal Justice

4.7%

Graphic Design

4.5%

Mechanical Engineering

4.3%

Electrical Engineering

4.2%

Drafting And Design

4.2%

Industrial Technology

4.1%

Electrical Engineering Technology

3.6%

Computer Science

3.4%

Heating And Air Conditioning

2.3%

Education

2.1%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

2.1%

Engineering

2.0%

Accounting

2.0%

Aviation

1.9%

Mechanical Engineering Technology

1.9%
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Degrees

Other

44.7%

Bachelors

19.8%

Associate

18.1%

Certificate

10.2%

Diploma

3.6%

Masters

2.8%

License

0.6%

Doctorate

0.2%
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Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Average Yearly Salary
$50,000
View Detailed Salary Report
$26,000
Min 10%
$50,000
Median 50%
$50,000
Median 50%
$50,000
Median 50%
$50,000
Median 50%
$50,000
Median 50%
$50,000
Median 50%
$50,000
Median 50%
$96,000
Max 90%
Best Paying Company
IAP Worldwide Services
Highest Paying City
Warwick, RI
Highest Paying State
Hawaii
Avg Experience Level
2.6 years
How much does a Fabricator make at top companies?
The national average salary for a Fabricator in the United States is $50,638 per year or $24 per hour. Those in the bottom 10 percent make under $26,000 a year, and the top 10 percent make over $96,000.

Real Fabricator Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Art Fabricator Carlson Arts, LLC CA May 04, 2015 $56,349
Fabricator Automotosport, Inc. West Chicago, IL Oct 01, 2014 $52,000
Fabricator Art Sign Co., Inc. Fort Lauderdale, FL Jul 19, 2016 $47,000
Fabricator Adam's European Contracting Inc. New York, NY Sep 13, 2016 $46,966
Fabricator Elilacon Company, Inc. LA Jan 01, 2014 $40,571
Fabricator Maxum Industries, LLC. LA May 10, 2013 $39,653
Art Fabricator Art Bronze, Inc. San Fernando, CA Sep 21, 2015 $37,566
Fabricator Eagle Industrial Equipment, Inc. LA Mar 01, 2013 $34,853
Fabricator Blue Point Solutions TX Mar 20, 2014 $34,269
Fabricator Blue Point Solutions Corpus Christi, TX Apr 04, 2016 $34,206
Fabricator PAU Construction TX Jan 24, 2014 $33,705
Fabricator Maxum Industries, LLC. LA Jan 01, 2013 $33,475
Fabricator PAU Construction Denton, TX Jan 01, 2016 $33,037
Fabricator Blue Point Solutions TX Apr 09, 2015 $31,848
Fabricator Blue Point Solutions TX Feb 15, 2015 $31,848
Fabricator PAU Construction TX Jan 01, 2015 $31,284
Fabricator Global Labor Services, LLC. TX Oct 29, 2013 $30,971
Fabricator Tarilas Corporation TX Jan 01, 2014 $30,971
Fabricator Amtex General Contractors, LLC. TX Apr 17, 2014 $30,971
Earrings Fabricator Mavito Fine Jewelry Ltd. New York, NY Feb 25, 2010 $30,762
Fabricator Amtex General Contractors, LLC. TX Mar 01, 2013 $26,359
Glass Fabricators Redbud Glass Inc. Oklahoma City, OK May 22, 2009 $14,484
Glass Fabricators Redbud Glass Inc. Oklahoma City, OK Sep 11, 2008 $14,484
Glass Fabricators Redbud Glass Inc. Oklahoma City, OK Mar 27, 2009 $14,484
Glass Fabricators Redbud Glass Inc. Oklahoma City, OK Apr 01, 2009 $14,484
Glass Fabricators Redbud Glass Inc. Oklahoma City, OK Apr 06, 2009 $14,484
Glass Fabricators Redbud Glass Inc. Oklahoma City, OK Apr 03, 2009 $14,484
Glass Fabricators Redbud Glass Inc. Oklahoma City, OK Jun 18, 2009 $14,484

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Top Skills for A Fabricator

  1. Inspect Parts
  2. Customer Service
  3. Aluminum
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Inspect parts to make sure they're the correct ones before assembling doors.
  • Service-oriented individual with 9 years background in customer service and relations.
  • Cut raw material to product specifications Assembled aluminum door frames and sashes Performed light welding or aluminum components as necessary
  • Train workers in construction methods, operation of equipment, safety procedures, and company policies.
  • Build monument signage using extrusion slats, MiG weld secure, insert steel reinforcements for proper boom lifting and security.

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Top 10 Best States for Fabricators

  1. Iowa
  2. Alaska
  3. North Dakota
  4. Kentucky
  5. Wyoming
  6. Pennsylvania
  7. Tennessee
  8. Indiana
  9. Maine
  10. Ohio
  • (87 jobs)
  • (11 jobs)
  • (18 jobs)
  • (29 jobs)
  • (12 jobs)
  • (94 jobs)
  • (47 jobs)
  • (61 jobs)
  • (15 jobs)
  • (95 jobs)

Top Fabricator Employers

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Jobs From Top Fabricator Employers

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