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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm a 3rd year electrical apprentice through the association of builders and contractors. Although banging around on new construction sites is fun I would like to expand past new construction and simply pulling the wire relatively quickly in my career. Want to programming fire alarms and do service installation.. Does anybody have any suggestions on how to get in to programming fire alarms??
 

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Yenkee77 I am aware.. this is why I specifically put down programming.. 30ish. A hour. Pay is comparable to being a 7/8 year electrician..
 

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Go into machine control. FA will get boring in time.
 
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I was thinking controls. Definitely after the apprenticeship.
 

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Go to automation direct and get a click plc to do a home project. They have a ton of example programs you can study to wrap your head around ladder logic. I have a full rack of cards set up in my basement running my home automation. It’s cheap hardware and you can use the experience to pad your resume. That’s where I started and now I’m running a laptop about 40% of the time, my tools 20%, and the rest of the time in the company truck driving here and there to commit logic updates and program drives. I wasn’t satisfied just running pipe and pulling wire and I’m really glad I got into controls.
 

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Yenkee77 I am aware.. this is why I specifically put down programming.. 30ish. A hour. Pay is comparable to being a 7/8 year electrician..
I interviewed with ADT Fire and Alarm. Coming from a background in programming and installing PBX systems, starting pay after training was only $19 per hour and that's in the North East, Boston area. If you can find a Company that will pay $30ish, jump on it.
 

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I interviewed with ADT Fire and Alarm. Coming from a background in programming and installing PBX systems, starting pay after training was only $19 per hour and that's in the North East, Boston area. If you can find a Company that will pay $30ish, jump on it.
Really?? I'll ask the non union low volt guys on the job site I'm working now to see how much they make.. aside from that what dose training entail??
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Go to automation direct and get a click plc to do a home project. They have a ton of example programs you can study to wrap your head around ladder logic. I have a full rack of cards set up in my basement running my home automation. It’s cheap hardware and you can use the experience to pad your resume. That’s where I started and now I’m running a laptop about 40% of the time, my tools 20%, and the rest of the time in the company truck driving here and there to commit logic updates and program drives. I wasn’t satisfied just running pipe and pulling wire and I’m really glad I got into controls.
After this weekend of laziness. I'm going to break out a Raspberry Pi zero that's sitting around. also have a large amount of books on arduino, raspberry pi, beaglebone. Got them from humblebundle.com I'm pretty sure I can offer anybody copies of these books because they are saved to my hard drive. Just zip them up and encrypt them.
 

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Don’t take this the wrong way, but if you’re looking to make money then Pi and Arduino skills aren’t very transferable to industry. There are some pie in the sky offerings for industrial automation, but today at least, nobody is using that stuff. You need to learn Rockwell, Emerson, Schneider, Siemens etc. More importantly, get involved with it at work. At year three, you’re nearing the end of your apprenticeship and nobody wants to pay someone full rate to cut their teeth on relay based controls, system integration, or programming. All the software packages on my laptop cost more than my (personal) truck for example.

Not trying to sound like an ass but if you want the best results, course correct ASAP.
 

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Don’t take this the wrong way, but if you’re looking to make money then Pi and Arduino skills aren’t very transferable to industry. There are some pie in the sky offerings for industrial automation, but today at least, nobody is using that stuff. You need to learn Rockwell, Emerson, Schneider, Siemens etc. More importantly, get involved with it at work. At year three, you’re nearing the end of your apprenticeship and nobody wants to pay someone full rate to cut their teeth on relay based controls, system integration, or programming. All the software packages on my laptop cost more than my (personal) truck for example.

Not trying to sound like an ass but if you want the best results, course correct ASAP.
I like your thinking. It almost looks like you have copied quotes from me in prior post to people asking the same question. 😏
@CardiB the money to follow his advice is not much for the skills you get.

Cowboy
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Don’t take this the wrong way, but if you’re looking to make money then Pi and Arduino skills aren’t very transferable to industry. There are some pie in the sky offerings for industrial automation, but today at least, nobody is using that stuff. You need to learn Rockwell, Emerson, Schneider, Siemens etc. More importantly, get involved with it at work. At year three, you’re nearing the end of your apprenticeship and nobody wants to pay someone full rate to cut their teeth on relay based controls, system integration, or programming. All the software packages on my laptop cost more than my (personal) truck for example.

Not trying to sound like an ass but if you want the best results, course correct ASAP.
Dude, thank you.. somebody else is paying for my classes so I wouldn't dream of dropping a chance to at least get my journeyman's and qualify for the masters.. Plus my company is allowing me to do Service installation instead of just switches and outlets. Really would like to get that training in... ( anything to make me more versatile.) I'll Google my ass off tonight and see what comes up... Again thank you
 

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Plus my company is allowing me to do Service installation instead of just switches and outlets.
^This.

My nearly 20 years in the trade has shown few employers give a darn about classroom or vendor training. Its all about having the regulatory certificate they need, plus experience. The key is positioning yourself to get that experience.
 

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. Want to programming fire alarms and do service installation.. Does anybody have any suggestions on how to get in to programming fire alarms??
[/QUOTE]

You must not realize there is absolutely NO programming of fire alarms or any life safety in the field unless your wearing the manufactures logo on your clothing. The liability is just to high and any changes would have to be reviewed by god only knows who, Yes you may install a phone number into a dialer, I do not call that programming. I installed a Simplex Mapnet for McDonnald Douglass years ago. We had door locks and egress lighting commanded by the FA system. It was a whole lot of little tiny wires being landed on the terminals. I made up 20 of the 30 panels on site. Then we found the bug and Simplex had to replace the brains in every panel. It was job security for me.
FA panels is just landing wires on the designated terminal and tighten. Class A (4wire) and Class B (2 wire) are really simple to do. Even the newer MAPNET ones are just an communication cable along with the 4 wires.

Writing code is not for everyone. I know and have used ladder logic. Know very little about function block. Some one suggest Automation Direct and get a cheap PLC. good idea.

Have written a couple of hundred small programs for different processes. I enjoy it but it would drive me bananas if it was a solid diet of it. I had 30 years in the trade before I got into the golden screwdriver squad. That where you show up with a lap top and two tiny screwdrivers in you pocket. Still only made $70k a year along with 100 flights.

Education is almost everything nowadays. If you can get into a electrical manfacturing company as a trouble shooter you will be exposed to a lot of higher tech equipment. I am retired now and quit looking at those postings, last time I looked they mentioned Masters Degrees in EE. Way out of my league.
 
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