What Does A Metal Fabricator Do?

A metal fabricator manipulates metal for construction and manufacturing companies. They are required to cut, shape, position and align different metals. They must also understand assembly instructions, ensure required parts are available, and ensure parts meet quality control standards. They attend product development meetings, test products for functionality, troubleshoot and stress test products to determine possible shortcomings, make detailed reports outlining product malfunctions, verify product dimensions, and maintain the product schedule.

Here are examples of responsibilities from real metal fabricator resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Complete HVAC metal fabrication on job site/project.
  • Form and fabricate metal for HVAC usage.
  • Interpret blueprints and schematics, TIG weld parts as defined in specification sheets.
  • Operate band see, chop see, MIG welder, stick welder, and grinders to cut to specifications.
  • Operate CNC turret punch press, CNC press brakes, CNC metal shears and other various metal working equipment.
  • Cut, grind, shape, sand and polish metal for scooter parts to be distribute domestically and internationally.
  • Limit experience with designing computer generate signage.
  • Manufacture wooden, plastic, vinyl and aluminum-construct signage.
  • Measure and cut aluminum material for use in manufacturing automatic doors and windows.
  • Manufacture extruded aluminum evaporator coils, condenser coils, and other products for heat transfer applications.
Metal Fabricator Traits
Color vision
Color vision involves being able to determine between different colors.
Math skills include being able to perform basic addition and subtraction, as well as solving for the unknown and visualizing data that will be helpful in the workplace.
Computer skills involves understanding how to operate a computer, as well as computer programs and applications.

Metal Fabricator Overview

Between the years 2018 and 2028, metal fabricator jobs are expected to undergo a growth rate described as "decline" at -11%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. So if the thought "should I become a metal fabricator?" Has crossed your mind, maybe you should take the growth rate into account. In addition, the number of metal fabricator opportunities that are projected to become available by 2028 is -203,300.

A metal fabricator annual salary averages $35,420, which breaks down to $17.03 an hour. However, metal fabricators can earn anywhere from upwards of $28,000 to $43,000 a year. This means that the top-earning metal fabricators make $15,000 more than the lowest-earning ones.

Once you've become a metal fabricator, you may be curious about what other opportunities are out there. Careers aren't one size fits all. For that reason, we discovered some other jobs that you may find appealing. Some jobs you might find interesting include a product builder, door assembler, warehouse assembler, and furniture assembler.

Metal Fabricator Jobs You Might Like

Metal Fabricator Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 17% of Metal Fabricators are proficient in Drill Press, MIG, and Hand Tools. They’re also known for soft skills such as Color vision, Math skills, and Computer skills.

We break down the percentage of Metal Fabricators that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Drill Press, 17%

    Metal fabrication, cut metal, ran lathe and mill, limited welding, used grinders, plasma cutters and drill press

  • MIG, 10%

    Weld metal using various techniques such as MIG, TIG and Stick.

  • Hand Tools, 10%

    Press sheet Metal, assembled, used small hand tools, cut metal, trim insulation, read blue prints

  • Aluminum, 7%

    Manufactured extruded aluminum evaporator coils, condenser coils, and other products for heat transfer applications.

  • Tape Measure, 5%

    Use of Micrometers, Calipers, and Tape measures.

  • Stainless Steel, 5%

    Install and repair heating and air conditioning ducts, roofing, stainless steel appliances, siding, and metal partitions.

Some of the skills we found on metal fabricator resumes included "drill press," "mig," and "hand tools." We have detailed the most important metal fabricator responsibilities below.

  • Arguably the most important personality trait for a metal fabricator to have happens to be color vision. An example from a resume said this about the skill, "assemblers and fabricators who make electrical and electronic products must distinguish different colors, because the wires they often work with are color coded." Additionally, other resumes have pointed out that metal fabricators can use color vision to "use vision router tables, spray booth, vinyl printer, edge prints. "
  • Another commonly found skill for being able to perform metal fabricator duties is the following: math skills. According to a metal fabricator resume, "assemblers and fabricators must know basic math and be able to use computers, because the manufacturing process continues to advance technologically." Check out this example of how metal fabricators use math skills: "applied knowledge of shop mathematics, metal properties, and layouts. "
  • In order for certain metal fabricator responsibilities to be completed, the job requires the skill "dexterity." According to a metal fabricator resume, "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." As an example, this snippet was taken directly from a resume about how this skill applies: "coordinated, unloaded and dispersed materials using forklifts and overhead cranes. "
  • Yet another important skill that a metal fabricator must demonstrate is "mechanical skills." Modern production systems require assemblers and fabricators to use programmable motion-control devices, computers, and robots on the factory floor. This is clearly demonstrated in this example from a metal fabricator who stated: "read mechanical drawings precision cutting and drilling using hydraulic band saw and electric drill press"
  • Another skill commonly found on metal fabricator resumes is "physical strength." This description of the skill was found on several metal fabricator resumes: "assemblers and fabricators must be strong enough to lift heavy components or pieces of machinery" Here's an example from a resume of how this skill could fit into the day-to-day metal fabricator responsibilities: "fabricate solid surface countertops to specifications based on measurements or physical template within tolerances of a sixteenth of an inch. "
  • See the full list of metal fabricator skills.

    Those metal fabricators who do attend college, typically earn either a precision metal working degree or a business degree. Less commonly earned degrees for metal fabricators include a automotive technology degree or a general studies degree.

    Once you've obtained the level of education you're comfortable with, you might start applying to companies to become a metal fabricator. We've found that most metal fabricator resumes include experience from Brunswick, ManpowerGroup, and Sunshine Bancorp. Of recent, Brunswick had 2 positions open for metal fabricators. Meanwhile, there are 2 job openings at ManpowerGroup and 2 at Sunshine Bancorp.

    Since salary is important to some metal fabricators, it's good to note that they are figured to earn the highest salaries at Turner Construction, Carlisle Companies, and Signal International. If you were to take a closer look at Turner Construction, you'd find that the average metal fabricator salary is $48,915. Then at Carlisle Companies, metal fabricators receive an average salary of $41,772, while the salary at Signal International is $41,564.

    View more details on metal fabricator salaries across the United States.

    If you earned a degree from the top 100 educational institutions in the United States, you might want to take a look at Wabash National, Kelly Services, and Boeing. These three companies have hired a significant number of metal fabricators from these institutions.

    The industries that metal fabricators fulfill the most roles in are the manufacturing and construction industries. But the highest metal fabricator annual salary is in the manufacturing industry, averaging $38,954. In the health care industry they make $38,512 and average about $38,038 in the professional industry. In conclusion, metal fabricators who work in the manufacturing industry earn a 11.5% higher salary than metal fabricators in the government industry.

    The three companies that hire the most prestigious metal fabricators are:

      What Product Builders Do

      In this section, we take a look at the annual salaries of other professions. Take product builder for example. On average, the product builders annual salary is $11,034 lower than what metal fabricators make on average every year.

      While the salaries between these two careers can be different, they do share some of the same responsibilities. Employees in both metal fabricators and product builders positions are skilled in hand tools, different types, and assembly instructions.

      There are some key differences in responsibilities as well. For example, a metal fabricator responsibilities require skills like "drill press," "mig," "aluminum," and "tape measure." Meanwhile a typical product builder has skills in areas such as "medical devices," "medical products," "procedures," and "safety policies." This difference in skills reveals how truly different these two careers really are.

      On average, product builders reach similar levels of education than metal fabricators. Product builders are 3.9% more likely to earn a Master's Degree and 0.5% less likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.

      What Are The Duties Of a Door Assembler?

      Now we're going to look at the door assembler profession. On average, door assemblers earn a $9,553 lower salary than metal fabricators a year.

      While the salary may be different for these job positions, there is one similarity and that's a few of the skills needed to perform certain duties. We used info from lots of resumes to find that both metal fabricators and door assemblers are known to have skills such as "hand tools," "aluminum," and "tape measure. "

      While some skills are similar in these professions, other skills aren't so similar. For example, several resumes showed us that metal fabricator responsibilities requires skills like "drill press," "mig," "stainless steel," and "cnc." But a door assembler might use skills, such as, "osha," "production goals," "quality checks," and "door shop."

      On the topic of education, door assemblers earn similar levels of education than metal fabricators. In general, they're 2.2% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree and 0.5% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

      How a Warehouse Assembler Compares

      A warehouse assembler takes on several responsibilities. They are responsible for preparing work that needs to be accomplished by studying and following assembly instructions to put together parts. They also interpret engineering blueprints and technical jargon. They are expected to verify accurate quantities of components and to check that the items are completed to ensure quality. They manage the inventory of parts and tools that are used in the process of assembly.

      The warehouse assembler profession generally makes a lower amount of money when compared to the average salary of metal fabricators. The difference in salaries is warehouse assemblers making $11,629 lower than metal fabricators.

      Using metal fabricators and warehouse assemblers resumes, we found that both professions have similar skills such as "hand tools," "safety rules," and "blueprint specifications," but the other skills required are very different.

      There are many key differences between these two careers as shown by resumes from each profession. Some of those differences include the skills required to complete responsibilities within each role. As an example of this, a metal fabricator is likely to be skilled in "drill press," "mig," "aluminum," and "tape measure," while a typical warehouse assembler is skilled in "part numbers," "pallet jack," "quality standards," and "company policies."

      Warehouse assemblers make a very good living in the retail industry with an average annual salary of $27,195. Whereas metal fabricators are paid the highest salary in the manufacturing industry with the average being $38,954.

      When it comes to education, warehouse assemblers tend to earn similar education levels than metal fabricators. In fact, they're 0.6% less likely to earn a Master's Degree, and 0.5% less likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.

      Description Of a Furniture Assembler

      Furniture assemblers tend to earn a lower pay than metal fabricators by about $9,033 per year.

      While their salaries may vary, metal fabricators and furniture assemblers both use similar skills to perform their jobs. Resumes from both professions include skills like "hand tools," "tape measure," and "verbal instructions. "

      Each job requires different skills like "drill press," "mig," "aluminum," and "stainless steel," which might show up on a metal fabricator resume. Whereas furniture assembler might include skills like "wooden parts," "office furniture," "delivery vehicle," and "safety procedures."

      Furniture assemblers earn a higher salary in the government industry with an average of $29,453. Whereas, metal fabricators earn the highest salary in the manufacturing industry.

      Furniture assemblers reach similar levels of education when compared to metal fabricators. The difference is that they're 0.1% more likely to earn a Master's Degree less, and 0.0% more likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.