Metal Fabricator Job Description, Skills, and Salary
Get to know about the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, and skills requirements of a metal fabricator. Feel free to use our metal fabricator job description template to produce your own. We also provide you with information about the salary you can earn as a metal fabricator.
Who is a Metal Fabricator?
A metal fabricator is someone who works primarily with a variety of raw materials, such as cast metal, expanded metal, welding wires, and plate metal. They primarily operate in manufacturing facilities or on construction sites, creating metal-based assembly components with a variety of tools.
Technology Used for Metal Fabrication
CAD software: Computer-aided design (CAD) software plays a big part in how metal fabrication projects are designed. CAD software is used by engineers to create designs that fabrication companies can use during the manufacturing process. This software solution enables the creation of 3D models as well as quick design updates and modifications. For programming fabrication machinery, CAD software also makes programming language translations simple. With the use of computer-aided design, it is now much simpler to fine-tune parts, and engineers can instantly determine vital information, such as information on potential structurally weak points.
Automation: The fabrication process has recently transformed thanks to automation. More and more fabrication equipment is being built with programming capabilities, which enables the equipment to automatically execute projects according to requirements with little assistance from humans. This enables 24-hour operation and enhances precision and reproducibility. There are automated tools for many different procedures, including cutting, welding, folding, and numerous machining operations.
Machinery: Additionally, machinery solutions get better over time. The employment of laser technology in cutting processes enables quicker cutting through thicker materials. There are also more and more options for other technologies, such as waterjet cutting and plasma cutting. These techniques are helpful for a variety of projects and material types.
Types of Metal Fabrication Processes
Cutting: The most basic step in the manufacturing of metal is cutting, which can be done using a laser, a waterjet, a shear, a saw, or a flame. This produces a piece of the desired size and forms out of sheet metal. The most prominent cutting technologies nowadays are waterjet and laser.
Casting: The fabricator pours molten metal into a mold that is created by a die. After the die is removed, this metal solidifies as it cools and remains in place.
Forging: Raw metal is compressed by high-pressure equipment, enabling a fabricator to bend and shape it.
Punching: Turrets use pre-designed patterns to punch holes in metal, either for aesthetic or practical reasons.
Drawing: Tensile force is used in this procedure to draw liquid metal into a tapered die.
Milling: A milling mechanism creates holes in the metal, some of which may not be circular due to the machine’s design.
Drilling: A drill’s circular bit creates holes in the metal.
Turning: The metal component is placed onto a rotating platform so that a technician can cut it radially while it spins.
Extrusion: Billets are pushed through a die by a ram. Circular components, such as pipes or electrical wires, are created by the extrusion process.
Metal Fabricator Job Description
Below are the metal fabricator job description examples you can use to develop your resume or write a metal fabricator job description for your employee. Employers can also use it to sieve out job seekers when choosing candidates for interviews.
- Cut and shape metal from its raw form into parts that can be used for assembly or aftermarket purposes.
- Reduce Quality Notifications and Scrap by using equipment and measurement instruments to drive part accuracy within print tolerances.
- Layout and assemble the work according to the specifications provided by sketches, prints, written instructions, and verbal directions.
- Read and comprehend engineering plans.
- Establish the necessary metalworking equipment, such as rollers, drill presses, flame cutters, brakes, and shears.
- Check the design specs twice before beginning any cutting work
- Make and assemble metal components.
- Grind and polish finished goods.
- Conduct quality inspections on the finished goods.
- Determine the number of materials, their thickness, and their needed sizes.
- Ascertain layouts, operational sequences, or the identities and relationships of parts, one must read and interpret blueprints, illustrations, and specifications.
- Utilize measuring tools, blueprint lines, and index points, position and align subassemblies in fixtures or jigs.
- Create sub-assemblies by assembling prefabricated elements.
- Work accurately and precisely to achieve production deadlines.
- Make that the entire completed item was produced in line with type design specifications and was certified as complying with approved quality system criteria.
- Ascertain the project’s requirements, such as its scope, assembly sequences, and necessary techniques and supplies following the blueprints, drawings, and written or verbal instructions.
- Use calculators, scribes, dividers, squares, and rulers, layout, measure, and mark dimensions and reference lines on material, such as roofing panels, following drawings, or templates.
- Fasten seams or joints together with welds, bolts, cement, rivets, solder, caulks, metal drive clips, or bonds to assemble parts into products or to repair sheet metal objects.
- Install assemblies in supporting frameworks, such as flashing, pipes, tubes, ducts for heating and air conditioning, furnace casings, gutters, or downspouts.
- Create shop drawings from blueprints for use in the fabrication or assembly of sheet metal items.
- Utilize shears, hammers, punches, and drills to fabricate or modify items when working on construction sites.
- Choose sheet metal or nonmetallic material kinds and gauges following the product’s specifications.
- Move the finished pieces into place for installation and secure them.
- Transport prefabricated components to building locations to facilitate assembly and installation.
- Make holes in metal with a drill or a punch for screws, bolts, and rivets.
- Ability to work in a heavy manufacturing setting that calls for uncomfortable postures and positions for extended periods over the course of an 8–10 hour day.
- Proficiency with measuring instruments (such as caliper, tape measure, height gauge, plug gages, combination square, and protractor).
- Mechanical engineering bachelor’s degree.
- Experience as a metal fabricator in the past.
- American Welding |Society (AWS) accreditation and expert welding knowledge.
- Advanced understanding of engineering design and production techniques.
- Understanding of how to read and interpret engineering plans.
- Proficiency with drill presses, rollers, flame cutters, and shears for metal manufacturing.
- Mathematical Skills: Mathematical abilities can make prospective prospects stand out since they enable metal fabricators to complete tasks more efficiently. You’ll need to be able to read plans, comprehend designs, and determine the proportions that need to be welded. When you cut and trim metal things to specified proportions, math will also come in handy.
- Keen Attention to Details: The best metal fabricators must be meticulous. They should be able to assess potential purchases of equipment, for instance. Before welding, they will also need to chip out holes, bubbles, and cracks, as well as clean portions of grease or rust. They must complete duties with a minimum amount of error, and each of these jobs calls for meticulousness.
- Physical Agility: As a metal fabricator, your physical attributes may help increase your employability. In particular, you’ll need to be able to lift, bend, twist, and crouch to assemble or disassemble big vehicles like cars and airplanes. To hold a torch in place for an extended amount of time, you’ll also need steady hands and a firm grip.
- Administrative Skills: Although metal production is a physically demanding career, it also involves administrative work. Metal fabricators must be able to keep records of their work, be well-organized, and keep an eye on their inventory, purchasing extra materials as needed. Project management and planning skills are also necessary for metal fabricators. Working efficiently with a team or working alone may be required for this.
- Knowledge of Use and Maintenance of Work Tools and Technology: Metal fabricators should be able to solder adjacent edges of work components by melting the solder and applying it. They should also be able to use grinders or other metal finishers, check the integrity of welds and components, and fix leaks. As well as setting up equipment and machine tools, metal fabricators should be able to test coils for air leaks. Also necessary for metal fabricators are the skills to handle hand tools, lifting and control equipment, soldering irons, fillet and butt weld gauges, and solder. Metal fabricators should be capable of using an air carbon arc gouging machine, robotic welding equipment, and a brazing torch.
How to Become a Metal Fabricator
- Obtain your high school diploma or a GED: Most firms require candidates to have at least a high school diploma. It suffices to land the majority of entry-level positions. Take advantage of your time in school to enroll in courses that will advance your career as a metal fabricator. If your school offers any work-study or apprenticeship programs that may help you launch your career, inquire about them. The GED is seen as being on par with a high school diploma. Take the GED exam if you don’t graduate high school to be eligible for more opportunities. Consult a counselor or academic advisor while you are still in school to make sure you are doing everything you can to get ready for a career as a metal fabricator.
- Study mathematics in preparation for measuring and cutting metal: Mathematical expertise is necessary for the manufacturing of metal. You should take algebra in school at the very least if you want to succeed in the field. Calculating how to arrange and mix various bits of metal can also benefit from the knowledge of geometry and trigonometry. Before undergoing employment training, gain some expertise in math since it can be challenging. After that, you can do an apprenticeship or program in metal manufacturing to gain more experience.
- Up your Communication Skills: Most metalworkers collaborate in teams. Working effectively with others is essential for a metal fabricator, whether it be team members, managers, or clients. Take classes in communication and language to get ready. Additionally, look for volunteer positions that will put you in touch with clients and other participants. Since metal fabricators must decipher blueprint designs and communicate the data to team members, reading literacy is particularly crucial. Even interacting with consumers is sometimes the responsibility of metal fabricators. Determine a customer’s demands and make sure they are met may be requested of you.
- Start using different tools that metal fabricators use for fabricating: Many of these tools can be used for practice on scrap metal at home. Start by using hole punches and shears to cut metal. Get comfortable using joining tools like soldering irons and welding torches. Read about the tools that keep a workshop working well, including power presses, cleat filers, riveters, and forming machines.
Investigate the processes utilized to transform different metals into commercial goods. Studying these topics can help you become ready for training even if you don’t have to learn everything on your own. Workshops create blueprints using computer-aided design (CAD) software. To learn about CAD, you can either take lessons or practice at home using free CAD software.
- Finish a 1-year training program to acquire more experience: Students interested in metal fabrication can enroll in study programs at numerous technical institutions and community colleges. Look into the training programs offered by some of the local colleges. If you don’t have a high school diploma or GED, enrolling in a program might be a very excellent option. You are given a certificate after the training as proof that you successfully finished the course. Training in metal manufacturing includes instruction in topics like quality assurance, shop algebra, and blueprint interpretation. The certificate you earn makes additional jobs available. Your formal training may make you more attractive to some employers.
- Apply to different companies for apprenticeships: Look around your neighborhood for any metal shops or industries that have opportunities for new hires. Choose those that offer training possibilities. Use the company’s website to submit an application, or think about contacting or going in person. Send in a resume outlining your credentials and educational background. You must complete an apprenticeship period if you don’t already have a lot of metalworking experience.
- Belong to a 3-year apprenticeship program to learn on the job: Most metal fabricators get started in the business by working as an apprentice. These programs are run by metalworking businesses. You gain practical experience while working for the company as an apprentice. After you complete your training, the employer has the option of hiring you on a full-time basis.
The majority of new hires in the metalworking industry come through apprenticeship programs. The greatest way to get started in metalworking if you’re new to it is through an apprenticeship. For high school students, several areas provide apprenticeship programs. When you graduate from high school, take advantage of this opportunity to go straight into the workforce if you know you want to pursue a career in metal fabrication.
- Obtain Certification as a fabricator if required in your country: In most cases, licenses are not required for metal fabricators to work. But in other places, you do need to have a certificate. Depending on the regulations, expect to earn your certificate after finishing either a training program or an apprenticeship. As a metal fabricator, you can work anywhere once you obtain a certificate. Obtaining a certificate can lead to new chances in fields where certification is not required. Examining the prerequisites is worthwhile because certification typically doesn’t require much extra value to obtain.
- Apply for specialist roles if you wish to create a specific product: Since the subject of metal production is so broad, there are numerous positions you can play throughout your career. The main focus of basic fabrication is the creation of commonplace items like ducts and gutters. For people who want to work on buildings, cars, or even computers, there are specific opportunities available. What kind of extra training and certifications, if any, you require depends on the role you chose.
- Attend a 2-year training program to proceed to an advanced field: For some higher-level positions in metal fabrication, further training is necessary. Consider obtaining an associate’s degree or vocational training if you intend to work in a specialized position involving intricate elements like electrical wiring. Check out the courses offered at the technical institutions in your area.
Consider getting further training if you intend to work with electronics, autos, or airplanes, for instance. Knowing about electrical circuits, heating systems, and other parts is a requirement for building sophisticated machinery.
- Earn extra certification in other skills if you wish to increase your credentials: Although it is not compulsory, the additional certification can facilitate the job search. You won’t go wrong by earning your certification as a welder because welding is a crucial component of the profession of a metal fabricator. Consider working on press brakes, fabricating signs, or other related jobs as well.
Enroll in a welding training program and pass the certification exam to become certified in welding. Focusing on one welding certification will help you land a specialized job as a fabricator because there are many available that cover various welding processes. If you intend to work with electrical systems, you might want to consider obtaining a soldering certificate. In advanced fabrication tasks involving electronics or cars, for example, it is useful for attaching wires.
Where to Work as a Metal Fabricator
- The manufacturing sector in plants and factories.
- Car Factories
- Electronic Device Factories
Metal Fabricator Salary Scale
As of June 28, 2022, the average hourly compensation for a Metal Fabricator in the United States is $22, however, the normal salary range is between $18 and $26. The hourly wage might vary significantly depending on a variety of significant aspects, including education, credentials, additional talents, and the length of time you have been in your line of work.
Based on 33 incomes, the average total remuneration for a Metal Fabricator in their first few years of employment is £9.88 (which includes tips, bonus, and overtime pay). Using 30 salaries for a mid-career Metal Fabricator with 5 to 9 years of experience, the average total salary is £11.56. Using 34 wages for an experienced Metal Fabricator with 10 to 19 years of experience, the average total compensation is £12.14. Employees who are in their late careers (20 years or more) make an average total income of £12.