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Become A Welder Fitter

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Working As A Welder Fitter

  • Controlling Machines and Processes
  • Handling and Moving Objects
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment
  • Performing General Physical Activities
  • $38,571

    Average Salary

What Does A Welder Fitter Do

Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers use hand-held or remotely controlled equipment to join or cut metal parts. They also fill holes, indentations, or seams of metal products.

Duties

Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers typically do the following:

  • Study blueprints, sketches, or specifications
  • Calculate dimensions to be welded
  • Inspect structures or materials to be welded
  • Ignite torches or start power supplies
  • Monitor the welding process to avoid overheating
  • Maintain equipment and machinery

Welding is the most common way of permanently joining metal parts. In this process, heat is applied to metal pieces, melting and fusing them to form a permanent bond. Because of its strength, welding is used in shipbuilding, automobile manufacturing and repair, aerospace applications, and thousands of other manufacturing activities. Welding also is used to join steel beams in the construction of buildings, bridges, and other structures and to join pipes in pipelines, power plants, and refineries.

Welders work in a wide variety of industries, from car racing to manufacturing. The work that welders do and the equipment they use vary with the industry. Arc welding, the most common type of welding today, uses electrical currents to create heat and bond metals together—but there are more than 100 different processes that a welder can use. The type of weld normally is determined by the types of metals being joined and the conditions under which the welding is to take place.

Cutters use heat to cut and trim metal objects to specific dimensions. The work of arc, plasma, and oxy–gas cutters is closely related to that of welders. However, instead of joining metals, cutters use the heat from an electric arc, a stream of ionized gas called plasma, or burning gases to cut and trim metal objects to specific dimensions. Cutters also dismantle large objects, such as ships, railroad cars, automobiles, buildings, and aircraft. Some operate and monitor cutting machines similar to those used by welding machine operators.

Solderers and brazers also use heat to join two or more metal objects together. Soldering and brazing are similar, except that the temperature used to melt the filler metal is lower in soldering. Soldering uses metals with a melting point below 840 degrees Fahrenheit. Brazing uses metals with a higher melting point. 

Soldering and brazing workers use molten metal to join two pieces of metal. However, the metal added during the soldering or brazing process has a melting point lower than that of the piece, so only the added metal is melted, not the piece. Therefore, these processes normally do not create distortions or weaknesses in the piece, as can occur with welding.

Soldering commonly is used to make electrical and electronic circuit boards, such as computer chips. Soldering workers tend to work with small pieces that must be positioned precisely.

Brazing often is used to connect cast iron and thinner metals that the higher temperatures of welding would warp. Brazing also can be used to apply coatings to parts in order to reduce wear and protect against corrosion.

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How To Become A Welder Fitter

A high school diploma or equivalent combined with technical and on-the-job training is typically required to become a welder, cutter, solderer, or brazer.

Education & Training

A high school diploma or equivalent combined with technical and on-the-job training is typically required to become a welder, cutter, solderer, or brazer. High school technical education courses and postsecondary institutions, such as vocational–technical institutes, community colleges, and private welding, soldering, and brazing schools offer formal technical training. In addition, the U.S. Armed Forces operate welding and soldering schools.

Courses in blueprint reading, shop mathematics, mechanical drawing, physics, chemistry, and metallurgy are helpful.

An understanding of electricity also is helpful, and knowledge of computers is gaining importance as welding, soldering, and brazing machine operators become more responsible for programming robots and other computer-controlled machines.

Although numerous employers are willing to hire inexperienced entry-level workers and train them on the job, many prefer to hire workers who have been through training or credentialing programs. Even entry-level workers with formal technical training still receive several months of on-the-job training.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Courses leading to certification are offered at many welding schools. For example, the American Welding Society offers the Certified Welder and Certified Welding Fabricator designations.

Some welding positions require general certification in welding or certification in specific skills, such as Certified Welding Inspector or Certified Robotic Arc Welding.

The Institute for Printed Circuits offers certification and training in soldering. In industries such as aerospace and defense, which need highly skilled workers, many employers require these certifications. Certification can show mastery of lead-free soldering techniques, which are important to many employers.

Some employers pay the cost of training and testing for employees.

Important Qualities

Detail oriented. Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers perform precision work, often with straight edges and minimal flaws. The ability to see details and characteristics of the joint and detect changes in molten metal flows requires good eyesight and attention to detail.

Manual dexterity. Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers must have a steady hand to hold a torch in one place. Workers must also have good hand-eye coordination.

Physical stamina. The ability to endure long periods of standing or repetitious movements is important for welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers.

Physical strength. Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers must be in good physical condition. They often must lift heavy pieces of metal and move welding or cutting equipment, and sometimes bend, stoop, or reach while working.

Spatial-orientation skills. Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers must be able to read, understand, and interpret two- and three-dimensional diagrams in order to fit metal products correctly.

Technical skills. Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers must be able to operate manual or semiautomatic welding equipment to fuse metal segments.

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Welder Fitter jobs

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Average Length of Employment
Master Welder 5.4 years
Journeyman Welder 4.7 years
Welding Foreman 4.1 years
Sheet Metal Welder 4.1 years
Welder Fitter 4.0 years
Welder/Machinist 3.9 years
Welder First Class 3.8 years
Gas Welder 3.6 years
Lead Welder 3.6 years
Pipefitter/Welder 3.6 years
Boilermaker Welder 3.4 years
Welder 3.4 years
Metal Welder 3.3 years
Maintenance Welder 3.3 years
Millwright/Welder 3.2 years
Combination Welder 3.1 years
Pipe Welder 3.1 years
Welder-Assembler 2.9 years
Ship Fitter 2.8 years
Boiler Welder 2.8 years
Ironworker/Welder 2.8 years
TIG Welder 2.8 years
Metal Fabricator 2.7 years
Welder-Manufacture 2.6 years
Welder Operator 2.6 years
MIG Welder 2.5 years
Industrial Welder 2.5 years
Combo Welder 2.5 years
Machine Welder 2.5 years
Structural Welder 2.5 years
Spot Welder 2.4 years
Steel Welder 2.3 years
Aluminum Welder 2.1 years
Robotic Welder 2.1 years
Tank Welder 2.1 years
Welder Apprentice 1.6 years
Tack Welder 1.4 years
Welder Helper 1.4 years
Welder Assistant 1.4 years
Fitter Helper 1.4 years
Top Employers Before
Welder 49.1%
Foreman 2.3%
MIG Welder 2.1%
Mechanic 2.1%
Supervisor 1.9%
Millwright 1.8%
Technician 1.7%
Top Employers After
Welder 45.5%
Foreman 2.5%
Millwright 2.1%
Supervisor 2.1%
Owner 2.0%
Mechanic 2.0%
MIG Welder 1.8%

Welder Fitter Demographics

Gender

Male

93.2%

Female

5.7%

Unknown

1.1%
Ethnicity

White

82.2%

Hispanic or Latino

10.3%

Asian

5.9%

Unknown

1.2%

Black or African American

0.5%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

66.4%

Carrier

5.9%

Russian

4.2%

Polish

4.2%

Dakota

2.5%

Portuguese

1.7%

Vietnamese

1.7%

German

1.7%

Ukrainian

1.7%

Navajo

1.7%

Dutch

0.8%

Croatian

0.8%

Gujarati

0.8%

Chinese

0.8%

French

0.8%

Czech

0.8%

Slovak

0.8%

Hindi

0.8%

Tamil

0.8%

Italian

0.8%
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Welder Fitter Education

Schools

Tulsa Welding School

29.0%

Hobart Institute of Welding Technology

6.9%

University of Phoenix

5.4%

Hinds Community College

4.7%

Greenville Technical College

4.7%

Kilgore College

4.2%

New Castle School of Trades

4.0%

Houston Community College

3.7%

Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College

3.7%

Texas State Technical College - Waco

3.5%

A-Technical College

3.5%

Florence-Darlington Technical College

3.4%

Southwestern Illinois College

3.2%

Lee College

3.2%

Ferris State University

3.0%

Trident Technical College

2.9%

Del Mar College

2.9%

Fox Valley Technical College

2.7%

Vincennes University

2.7%

Bishop State Community College

2.7%
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Majors

Precision Metal Working

48.8%

Business

7.5%

Industrial Technology

5.7%

General Studies

5.0%

Automotive Technology

4.5%

Electrical Engineering Technology

2.7%

Apparel And Textiles

2.5%

Mechanical Engineering

2.5%

Education

2.5%

Drafting And Design

2.4%

Electrical Engineering

2.2%

Criminal Justice

1.9%

Civil Engineering

1.8%

Engineering

1.8%

Kinesiology

1.7%

Computer Science

1.6%

Management

1.5%

Construction Management

1.2%

Heating And Air Conditioning

1.1%

Mechanical Engineering Technology

1.0%
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Degrees

Other

51.7%

Certificate

18.3%

Associate

15.1%

Bachelors

8.2%

Diploma

4.5%

Masters

2.0%

License

0.3%

Doctorate

0.1%
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Real Welder Fitter Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Welder, Cutter and Welders Fitters Fortune Interior Dismantling Corp. Ridgefield, NJ Sep 01, 2011 $70,958
Welder Fitters Gabriel's Wrought Iron, Inc. DBA Gabriel's Iron Works New York, NY Apr 01, 2010 $66,784
Welders-Fitters Aker Philadelphia Shipyard Inc. Philadelphia, PA Nov 24, 2008 $65,000
Certified Welder Tr Pipe Inc. NY Oct 01, 2010 $64,480 -
$70,000
Welder-Fitters AMCC Industries Inc. NY Feb 04, 2010 $49,149 -
$56,975
Welder Fitter Sc Maritime Management Philadelphia Ltd Philadelphia, PA Oct 01, 2009 $48,295
Welder Fitters Gabriels Wrought Iron, Inc. DBA 'Gabriel 's Iron Works New York, NY Nov 16, 2010 $48,001
Welder Fitter Sc Maritime Management Philadelphia Ltd Philadelphia, PA Oct 01, 2009 $47,777
Welder-Fitter Gulf Cooper & Manufacturing Corp. TX Feb 04, 2013 $47,250
Welder-Fitters Mega Vision Inc. New York, NY Dec 08, 2010 $46,634
Welders, Cutters, and Welder Fitters USA Iron, LLC. Kearny, NJ Feb 08, 2011 $46,634
Certified Welder Tr Pipe Inc. NY Oct 01, 2010 $46,634 -
$64,480
Welders, Cutters, and Welder Fitters USA Iron, LLC. Kearny, NJ Jul 12, 2012 $46,634
Welder-Fitter Castle Sanitation Corp. NY Dec 07, 2010 $31,451
Welder-Fitter Corona Industries Corp. New York, NY Dec 08, 2010 $31,451
Welder-Fitter Donald Wainlands Inc. NY Apr 17, 2009 $31,451
Welder-Fitter Corona Industries Corp. New York, NY Feb 13, 2009 $31,451
Welder Fitter Palmetto Construction, Inc. FL Jul 31, 2011 $30,888
Welder Fitter Dependable Scrap Co., Inc. NY May 20, 2010 $30,700
Welder-Fitters Milestone Tarant, LLC Capitol Heights, MD Aug 14, 2008 $30,366
Welder-Fitter The Welding Shop Inc. . New York, NY Apr 16, 2008 $29,823
Welder-Fitter Zinc Construction Corp. Newark, NJ Apr 23, 2009 $29,823
Welder-Fitter Zinc Construction Corp. Newark, NJ Apr 09, 2009 $29,823
Welder-Fitters Thomas Russo & Sons, Inc. Jersey City, NJ Oct 22, 2010 $29,823 -
$30,262
Welder-Fitter 387 Quincy Associate New York, NY May 20, 2008 $29,823
Welder-Fitter 5318 16Th Ave Enterprises LLC New York, NY Aug 11, 2008 $29,823
Welder-Fitter Yaboo Fence Co. Inc. Nyack, NY Aug 29, 2008 $29,823
Welder-Fitter Orbit Plumbing & Heating, Inc. New York, NY May 21, 2008 $29,823
Welder-Fitter Apollo Tech New York, NY Apr 11, 2008 $29,823

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Top Skills for A Welder Fitter

MIGTIGPlasmaArcFluxCoreWireSafetyEquipmentAluminumLayoutStainlessSteelProductionWelderFcawSmawGmawStructuralSteelHandToolsGtawOverheadCranesCustomerSpecificationsDrillPressPressureVesselsAWSD11

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Top Welder Fitter Skills

  1. MIG
  2. TIG
  3. Plasma Arc
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Worked with both MiG, and arc, mostly arc welding.
  • Fabricated racks, gear covers and trailers with tight tolerance specifications for heavy commercial, agricultural and construction equipment.
  • Used processes including gas tungsten arc, gas metal arc, flux-cored arc, plasma arc and shielded metal arc welding.
  • Certified on Stainless and Carbon Pipe Welding and Flux core Wire Welding with ceramic tape.
  • Set up and verified the functionality of safety equipment.

Top Welder Fitter Employers

Welder Fitter Videos

Pipe fitter job

Pipe Welder, Career Video from drkit.org

WELDING PIPE FITTING SHOP" ...undisclosed location."

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