View Full Version : Wages and Jobs
06-21-2004, 04:14 PM
Hey there everybody,
I am a new member, and have been looking at jobs and wages in Minnesota. I have found a few companies that are offering anywhere from $12 to $19 +, with some experience needed.
I am curious what other states offer for wages, and if you are from Minnesota, what kind of wages you would expect.
06-21-2004, 05:04 PM
Around here it ranges from 25$ hr [tig /stick pipe] down to 10$ hr for production mig.and any where in between.there are a lot of compan ies that hire muti-craft mech.welding,millrights,machinists,
these pay anywhere from 15$hr up to 30$ hr depending in the type of company it is.paper mills pay the most with chemical companys up there too.most of it is non-union,but the unions are why the non union companies have to pay a good wage to keep good people.i dont belong to a union but i know if it werent for them i would not be making what i am.so you wont hear me knock them.
06-23-2004, 09:45 PM
I've seen production mig jobs for 8 an hour. But the average poduction jobs pays from 12 to 16 an hour. Structural is usually 16 on up.
06-24-2004, 09:27 PM
wages can be regional. $15 in one place, $25 in another, for the SAME job.
Wages are dependant on the kind of work environment it is, as well as the location. Obviously, in expensive urban areas you get paid more than in cheap rural areas. I am an hour and a half outside of Seattle, and in town a decent welder in a nonunion shop can make 20 bucks, but out here I start my guys at $12 and work up to maybe $18, tops. But my shop is an example of a smaller more flexible shop. In my area, you can make $25 or $30, with lots of overtime, working in the refineries on turnarounds, but it is a dirty, brutal environment. Lotsa long days, no life besides work. My shop is much more flexible, fun, and easy to work in- and so I have no trouble getting good people to work for lower wages. Generally speaking, if all you care about is the money, the job is gonna be a real bear. Because they pay those high wages because they have to, not because they are nice guys. I have friends who used to work in the shipyards, and they made real good money, lying on their backs in 6" of water, in a 2 foot tall space, stick welding overhead.
Also, the pay for plain old production welders is always gonna be less than for people who can fit, and who can run all kinds of machinery, and most important, THINK.
I hire guys who have graduated from a 2 year AA course at the community college in welding, but in my shop, you are a rookie if all you can do is run a flawless tig weld in stainless ovehead. Then I gotta teach em how to measure accurately, how to lay out for a dozen different ways of cutting and punching and drilling, how to change the dies on the ironworker, or the blades on all the saws, how to use the hossfeld bender (that usually takes about 2 years alone) how to run the motorised plasma cutter, or the lathe, how to forge bronze or run the cnc twisting machine on stainless-
In short, how to actually make tricky, complicated stuff out of all kinds of materials and do it perfectly.
Being a good welder and getting your certs is great, and if that is all you want to do, there are a wide variety of jobs for you. Production, mindlessly welding the same thing all day, for $12 to $15. Or Union jobs on power plants or pipelines, that require absolute precision, and often pay $25 and up.
But the fun jobs, the more challenging ones that will enable you to learn enough to open your own shop someday- they arent going to pay you the big bucks right off, because they are actually taking their time to teach you to get to the next level.
07-02-2004, 01:29 AM
I think you pretty much said it, Ries. I've welded for many crap-hole production jobs(not all, but most) and have found that they push me to boredom. It's great and all for pulling a steady check each week or two to satisfy the bills, but that's not enough to keep a guy like me interested for very long. And I've been there, welding overhead in a coffin, laying in water trying to convince myself it was worth it.
I've done some pretty crappy things to make ends meet. Sure, they have paid kings ransoms, but in the long, they were only worth the experience.
My advice(worth as little as it may be): Go a round or two with what the welding world has to offer and reflect for a few. Find your niche, narrow things a bit and see what options might arise. The only limitations are your own imagination.
This might be a little off-thread and all, but after reading what Ries had to say I have to say, Hat's off.
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