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  1. #11
    Veteran Member deereman75's Avatar
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    canada
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    Default Re: Learning pipe welding

    I guess since I need to pass all position plate welding as well, Practicing on plate is a good idea. As for the pipe beveling, it is funny you mention wood lathe chucks. My main hobby is wood turning, particularly bowls. I have got a few chucks laying around, and I think I have enough other stuff around to build that rig, and I believe I could put together that powerhead fairly easily.

    I guess I am starting to think that with 7 months of full time welding school coming up, I might just stick to the basics right now.(figuring out open root, trying vertical and overhead) They supply everything, and instuction, and I am realizing I might be better off waiting on pipe until then, and practicing plate now.
    Never carry gasoline in your car trunk. If you do, atleast use some sort of container.
    -red green

  2. #12
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    Edmonton, Alberta
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    MF 135

    Default Re: Learning pipe welding

    I'm not exactly sure what it's like in BC (I'm in Alberta) but I'm certain that you can't weld on pipe until you have a B pressure ticket. In order to get a B pressure ticket, you first have to get your journeyman ticket after finishing your apprenticeship. However, in some vessel and/or piping shops that have an inhouse engineer you can get a C ticket. A C ticket allows a registered apprentice to weld pipe as long as he passes the initial B pressure test. Once the apprentice earns his journeyman ticket, the C ticket is no longer valid and he has to redo the B pressure test.

    You can't put the chicken before the egg so to speak. Pipe welding takes a lot of practice/experience and you don't just jump right into it. If you took a job as apprentice in a pipe shop or on a pipeline, you wouldn't be doing any pipe welding...but you would be more of a welders helper learning the trade. A good shop would have you welding non pressure tanks, skids, ladders etc. They might let you tack pipe if the tacks are ground out and you would learn all about fitting. Being able to do your own fitting is a huge advantage, especially if you have dual tickets and want some job security. Learn how to do open root full penetration welds on plate to get the feel of it before you jump right in on pipe. Start with flat and then go vertical, horizontal, overhead and 45 deg. overhead. If you have a good mentor to work with will really help you with pipe welding.

    The initial B pressure test is on 6" sch. 80 pipe, 6010 uphand root and 7018 fill and cap. When you get this far try to practice on the same sch.80 pipe because on thinner wall the heat from welding changes things. 3/4 of the test is done in 5G position and the other 1/4 (9 o'clock to 12 o'clock) is done in the 2G position. B pressure tickets have to be renewed every 2 years. The retest is actually easier than the initial test. The initial test is about 50% welder skill and 50% nerves! The most common retest is on 2" double extra heavy in the 6G position. This gives you 3 tickets in one, B pressure, small bore and heavy wall. Apparently some people claim Alberta has the reputation of having the best pipe welders in the world. I don't know about that but I've seen some pretty amazing welders from here and from all over the world as well. It's not as easy as some of them make it look. Hope this helps.

    I forgot to say that if you want to practice on plate, you can stand it on edge and use a bandsaw to cut it at 30 deg's. Then you just have to grind a land on it. Take the time to do as perfect a fit as possible.

  3. #13
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    Olalla WA, Kitsap Peninsula, West of Seattle
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    Default Re: Learning pipe welding

    I hear you but not loud and clear. I know several guys that have tried that route. Remember you are working as an independent contractor so you are responsible for your Income Taxes, Social Security, Medicare, job site accident insurance, sometimes liability insurance, you have no unemployment insurance, and vehicle and equipment ownership and operating costs are also yours. If you need a helper you have to manage that payroll and it is illegal to subcontract that type work. You have to make quarterly payments to IRS for taxes and if you under pay by more than 10% there are the penalties. The average Joe does not add up all these costs, but eventually find the are putting far less in the bank for themselves than working for straight hourly wages. Oh, forget about about overtime pay when the job requires 72 hrs a week. There is no per-diem or lodging reimbursement, that is your responsibility also. They never allow, if they do, what good union contracts require.

    If this was a good deal for you the hiring contractor would not do it that way. They are making extra profit on your overhead costs and they have no payroll or HR hassles.

    When someone blows the whistle (it will happen) then the US Dept of Labor steps in and declares such contracts as illegal and bankrupts the contractor with all the additional reimbursements for overtime and expenses they did not pay. They get you for that helper you tried to put on as a subcontractor instead of an hourly worker. A project that has Federal money involved is heavily scrutinized for these type illegal contracting methods.

    Beware and know your real costs and liability before signing these contracts and have fun booming around and never being home because the money isn't as lucrative as you thought to travel back when work is slack.

    As a Fitter/Welder I had far less time waiting for the next job as the straight welders. Fitters are the first on the job and last to leave when done, especially if they can weld also.

  4. #14
    Veteran Member deereman75's Avatar
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    Default Re: Learning pipe welding

    Actually, on a lot of contract work, such as gas plants, you get $163 a day living expenses (cash), and sometimes a gas card to cover all your fuel.
    Never carry gasoline in your car trunk. If you do, atleast use some sort of container.
    -red green

  5. #15
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    north shore MA.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Arc weld
    I forgot to say that if you want to practice on plate, you can stand it on edge and use a bandsaw to cut it at 30 deg's. Then you just have to grind a land on it. Take the time to do as perfect a fit as possible.
    And then when you have welded the plates, you can cut out just the weld, saving most of the plate. That way you only use up about 1" of plate per weld.
    Dan H.

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