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#126129 - 05/10/05 11:22 AM Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hi all, im new and have some questions.

I am trying to figure out what to do as a career. im going to be going to community college this fall for either Electrical work or auto mechanics. my cousin is a mechanic and does really well, so i know what that field is like.

I am currently employed at an electrical comapany doing residential work, doing wiring and the like. I have no experience doing it, so they are training me as i go along. i am not liking it all that well. i dont really enjoy the physical labor aspect of it, I.E. going in dirty crawl spaces, being in different types of weather at job sites, ect.

i was thinking about going to school to eventually become a licenced electrican, but i dont think i want to do that. maybe instead i can be an electrical inspector....

what's the difference in salary/career options as a licenced electrician and an electrical inspector? what makes more money and what has a higher demand?

i am debating on electrical work or auto mechanic for a career. i am just compairing salaries, benefits, demands, ect for the 2 types of careers.

any help would be greatly appreciated!

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#126130 - 05/10/05 11:55 AM Re: Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
Alan Belson Offline
Member

Registered: 03/23/05
Posts: 1801
Loc: Mayenne N. France
What do you enjoy doing? Where can you apply your natural talents?. Don't choose a career for the pay-check. A week in a job you love and can do well will fly by. A week in a job you hate and are mediocre at will drag on like a month of wet Sundays.
Alan
_________________________
Wood work but can't!

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#126131 - 05/10/05 01:40 PM Re: Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
Active 1 Offline
Member

Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 684
Loc: Grayslake IL, USA
I would not plan on getting an inspectors job out of school. Unless your talking Chicago then you don't need any exp or a drivers licence - just have to know someone.

Of coarse there are a lot less electrical inspectors. Average town around here have only 1. Some smaller villages don't have a full time electric only inspector. Average town has pages in the phone book of electrical contractors.

Demand for electricans right now depends on area. Here right now it seems like we have too many guys out of work. Not many ads in the paper for jobs.

Demand for auto mechanics is huge. One reason is a lot of guys gave it up. It is a difficult (physicaly & mentaly) and dirty job. Expect to buy $12k+ over time in tools. You will never stop buying tools because they will make a car that needs somethig new. Even after you go to a trade school for $10K you will not know much. After years of fixing the same things you will have certain cars figured out. By the time your a pro at them they will fade away and your working on something newer that you know nothing about. You never can stop studing, learning, and making mistakes unless you plan on being on the bottom doing mindless jobs.

Some guys like working on their hot rod & they think a mechanics job is like that. It's nothing like that.

I could go on & on about being an auto tec. Feel free to ask me more.

Tom

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#126132 - 05/10/05 02:41 PM Re: Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
Dnkldorf Offline
Member

Registered: 12/12/04
Posts: 1091
Loc: nowhere usa
Electrical Inspector, Electrician or Mechanic?

I say niether, suggest you try out for a reality TV show, become the next William Hung.

Some other ideas include:

Invent a mood ring,Rubix cube, maybe another Pet rock.
Make yourself a "Mother Mary grilled cheese sandwich" or find a Giant Cheeto and sell them on Ebay.
Start a fad, like yellow bracelets, or ribbons, drive backwards for 1,000 miles,

Anything but turning wrenches and pulling wires for a living.


Dnk.....

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#126133 - 05/10/05 07:00 PM Re: Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
renosteinke Offline
Cat Servant
Member

Registered: 01/22/05
Posts: 5305
Loc: Blue Collar Country
First of all, let's keep away from name-calling; we're adults here!

Electrical work is just that: WORK. Even agter you're a journeyman, a Master, have your own business, you will WORK. You will stand on a ladder all day, did a trench, pound a ground rod, crawl in attics and basements. It's part of the trade. While we're not as bad that way as, say, cement work or sheet-rockers, you will still get sweaty and dirty and sore.

Electrical contracting is the only field I've worked that has an actual anti-drug culture. Not that we're angels- we aren't- but there's too much at risk if the guy you're working with isn't 100% there.

There's a reason it's called a SKILLED trade. It takes time to get the physical skills down to where you're doing them efficiently. Experience will teach you the best way to do something. You will need time to learn what works, and what can go wrong. You need to know how things were done 10, 20, even 50 years ago. You need to know a little about the other trades, and how a job site is organised.

After a while, as we age, and are no longer as "young, dumb, and full of ourselves" as we once were, we often move into other related jobs. We work inside plants as maintenance electricians, become inspectors, work at supply houses.

As far as inspector go...no disrespect intended, but....are you likely to respect someone who's younger than your daughter, and got his learning from a book....or someone who's "been there," and knows the score?

Also, no disrespect intended here either, but as an Electrician, you're near the top of the trade pyramid. You see a job from start to finish. You do a greater variety of tasks, and do more "thinking" than most trades. Many are installing phones, Cable TV, alarms, etc....only until they can get to be 'real' electricians.

Oh- and prepare to spend money on your job. In this, as in many trades, you can easily spend $10,000 before you have anything like a 'complete' tool set.

What the Navy Seals say is true about life in general: "The only easy day is...Yesterday."

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#126134 - 05/10/05 07:10 PM Re: Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
sierra electrician Offline
Member

Registered: 02/12/05
Posts: 220
Loc: North Fork, CA USA
Be a Mechanic! Its the only trade where you charge more than you quoted and just say it took longer than the "book" said it would.

Rob

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#126135 - 05/10/05 08:10 PM Re: Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
harold endean Offline
Member

Registered: 02/16/02
Posts: 2248
Loc: Boonton, NJ
Besides all the jokes about the "Gentleman" trade as some plumbers use to call me. Some of the problems with electricians. Are you afraid of height? or crawl spaces? If so stick to auto mechanic. You keep both feet on the ground for the most part. Both jobs can be dirty, nothing worse than spending a whole day in a hot attic with lots of insulation. Some jobs close to electrical and a little neater is alarm or telco installers. The both need some computer knowledge. So does the new auto guys. My son is going to auto school and most new cars all have computers on them. Just me 2 cents.

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#126136 - 05/10/05 09:23 PM Re: Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
highvoltageguy Offline
Member

Registered: 03/03/05
Posts: 56
Loc: Silt, Colorado, USA
I just want to be a piano player in a whore house

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#126137 - 05/11/05 06:25 AM Re: Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
Anonymous
Unregistered


thanks to all that replied. i appreciate it!

Alan Belson said,
 Quote:
what do you enjoy doing?


well, i like to work on cars, i love to play poker and i enjoy all kinds of music. i would love to move to Vegas and be a pro poker player, but thats not really realistic. At one point i was thinking about going to an special school to study audio and be an audio engineer/producer, but there's not a huge demand for that type of thing. plus, only a handfull of people can be successfull at it. or i would love to be involved with music, but i cant afford to go to a music school like berkley or anything.

Dnkldorf said,
 Quote:
try out for a reality TV show, become the next William Hung.

Some other ideas include:

Invent a mood ring,Rubix cube, maybe another Pet rock.
Make yourself a "Mother Mary grilled cheese sandwich" or find a Giant Cheeto and sell them on Ebay.
Start a fad, like yellow bracelets, or ribbons, drive backwards for 1,000 miles,


c'mon man, thats not even realistic. thanks for the help...--insert sarcasm--

renosteinke said,
 Quote:
You will stand on a ladder all day, did a trench, pound a ground rod, crawl in attics and basements


i do that now and i dislike it.

 Quote:
Electrical contracting is the only field I've worked that has an actual anti-drug culture. Not that we're angels- we aren't- but there's too much at risk if the guy you're working with isn't 100% there.


i know. alot of corporate america is anti-drug. i do not wish to debate anything about Marijuana, but i will say that i am a responsible Marijuana user that uses it for medical reasons. i do not smoke on the job or any other irresponsible behavior like that. I smoke it after work.

sierra electrician said,
 Quote:
Be a Mechanic! Its the only trade where you charge more than you quoted and just say it took longer than the "book" said it would.


yea, thats true. my cousin is a mechanic and he said that he tells people a certain time it takes to finish a car, and how much that time will cost. even if he finishes that car before the estimated time, he still charges them for the time he said it will take.

harold endean said
 Quote:
Are you afraid of height?


im alittle afraid of it. a couple days ago at work, i was having a hard time because i had to stand on a really high ladder to do a recepticle in the ceiling and i was shaking, sweating and really nervous and felt like i was going to fall.

thanks again for the comments. i think im leaning more torwards auto mechanics than electrical work. i am doing that now and i dont like the work involved with it. plus, i have a bad back and ever since i took this job a month ago, my back pain is worse, which is why i smoke Marijuana, to relieve that pain.

im only 21, soon to be 22, but i have waited so long to go to college since i left high school that i need to make up my mind on what i want to do as a career. my options are kinda limited. i dont qualify for ivy league uni or even state college, so i have to go to community college and pick something there to take. now that i know what's involved with electrical work i dont think i want to do it as a career. i just wanted to weigh my options and get some advice from people in the field to help with my decision.

thanks and if anyone else has any other comments, please post them!

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#126138 - 05/11/05 07:24 AM Re: Electrical Work as a career? Anyone with experience willing to help?
Webmaster Offline

Administrator
Member

Registered: 10/07/00
Posts: 3142
Loc: NY, USA
It seems that you've got your mind made up already against doing Electrical work and I don't know why you would make a point to mention your Marijuana use, or incorporate it into your username, but we're not going to go into that either, so it looks like this discussion should be closed.

Good luck with the path you choose.

[This message has been edited by Webmaster (edited 05-11-2005).]

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