If you’re considering an apprenticeship in welding or welding trade school, you may be wondering what skills are needed to master welding technology – and start your career as a welding professional. So in this blog from Vern Lewis Welding Supply, we’ll take a look at a few of the essential skills you’ll need to be a good welder!
1. Mathematical Skills
You need relatively good math skills to be a great welder. If you’re good at calculating dimensions, reading blueprints, and understanding 2D and 3D diagrams, you’ll be much more effective in your role.
Math skills are particularly helpful if you often must trim metal objects and components to precise dimensions as part of the welding process. Overall, being able to grasp mathematical concepts easily will certainly help you in your duties.
2. Attention to Detail
Good welders always need to pay attention to the little things – like cleaning grease and corrosion from workpieces, double-checking their equipment before use, always remembering proper PPE, and following welding best practices to ensure a strong joint.
Welding is a job where minimal flaws are acceptable – and you need to always pay attention to what you’re doing. If you’re good at paying attention to detail, you’ll have a much easier time becoming a good welder.
3. Steady Hands and Good Hand-Eye Coordination
Welding can be a technically-challenging job. To achieve high-quality welds, you need steady hands and good hand-eye coordination. This is one of the skills that takes the longest time to develop when you enter a welding apprenticeship or trade school.
It will take time to master how different welds work, control weld pools, learn how to hold your tools steady, and how to create results that look smooth and are strong. At first, be prepared to make weak welds and major mistakes – this is normal.
As long as you persist, though, and keep building up your dexterity as a welder, you should begin to see your welds improve quickly – and you’ll begin to build the skills you need to master your craft.
4. Physical Strength and Endurance
Welding can be a physically taxing job, which is why being strong and able to endure some difficult workplace conditions is a great skill to have. Depending on your job, you may need to lift a considerable weight and pick up objects that could weigh to 50 to 100 lbs or even more.
You may also need to stay in one position for a long period of time while welding, and may have to work even in adverse conditions like the rain, snow, or other bad conditions depending on the weather, so both mental and physical endurance will be very beneficial during your career.
5. The Ability to Always Learn New Things
Above all else, the willingness and ability to learn is important as a welder, particularly when you’re starting out as an apprentice welder or in trade school.
Over the years, you’ll learn a lot about different types of welding like TIG, MIG, and stick welding, information about different types of welding and shielding gases, essential techniques for making different types of welding joints, and so much more.
Welding technology is always changing, and the best practices for welding often change, too. To be a great welder, you need to be willing to learn new things when you’re just starting out – and it’s also best to continue to train and learn more through professional development courses later in your career, too.
6. Good Communication and Teamwork Abilities
While welders may work on individual workpieces alone, most welding projects are part of a larger whole, and it’s very important to be a team player, and to be able to properly communicate with other members of your team, your supervisors, and anyone else in the factory or job site.
It’s important to be a reliable worker, communicate when you have questions, help out other people on your team, manage your time wisely, and work well with others. Building these skills is sure to make you a valuable asset to any welding team.
Build These Skills – and Become a Better Welder!
Whether you’re a novice welder just getting into the industry, or you’ve been working in welding for years, it’s always good to make sure you’re working on your skills – and building the above skills are sure to make you a more appealing candidate for any welding job.
If you are interested in improving your abilities as a welder, Vern Lewis Welding Supply offers a variety of training and classes that can help. Contact us today for more information.