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Hello, recently I've been getting bored of the current job I'm doing (CNC Machining) I am an operator and a programmer just got burned out on it, too repetitive anyways before I got into the CNC thing I had thought about going into an electrician apprenticeship I was wondering how that turned out for a lot of you that may have gone through one? I want to learn more about it and I also want a job that doesn't have a top out wage of 45-50k a year (working 50-60 hours at least a week) I'm about to turn 21 and wanna make the right move now and I was told a long time ago that I should go into that field I just never did got into machining, found it kinda fun liked it then got tired of it because I never get to explore with it. basically I want a job where I wont be in the exact same spot every day standing in front of one machine pushing a button, building programs for 10-12 hours 5-6 days a week. what I'm asking is how did some of you get into it? what are the average rates for apprentice's starting out and how do you like your job? Thanks
 

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I am in the EXACT same position.

Electricians seem like the do a variable amount of stuff, work outdoors, and travel (3 of the most important things to me right now). I'll turn 22 in 4 months, so I was curious about what some of you had to say about this trade as well.

I must say so far it looks very attractive!
 

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Obviously anyone you ask here in a forum where guys are spending their free time talking about their work will say it's the greatest trade to be in.

As with any job there are good times and bad, some months your doing tedious trim, other months your knee deep in mud.

But if you're worth a damn mentally and physically and can smile through the bad times and show serious initiative you'll be doing pretty much whatever you want.

As with any job you'll have start entry level and your region dictates your wage, I haven't topped out yet, but if I work 50 hours I bring home a thousand bucks and I'm still due 6 bucks more/hour when Im done.

Some advice; stay away from residential, and talk to the local union
 

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Some advice; stay away from residential, and talk to the local union
This is COMPLETELY personal preference. In fact I would give the EXACT OPPOSITE advice, on BOTH comments.

It's not that I don't do or like commercial work, I have and do. I have done from the ground up everything from restaurants, to MANY retail stores, to warehouses. It's just that commercial work is for a different type of company. I strive to stay small. I do not want to hire many guys and have a fleet of trucks. I like to have my hands in everything going on with my work. Besides that, commercial work is cut throat. You have to bid low and hope for change orders to make good money.

As far as the union goes I won't comment because of what my mother told me about not having anything nice to say.




C'mon Joe. You had to know that was coming.:whistling2:
 

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Of course I knew that was coming, but still have to speak up.

About commercial being cut-throat, I haven't heard that though i have heard it about residential.

I was trying to referrence what the OP said about working 60 hour weeks for 40k
 

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About commercial being cut-throat, I haven't heard that though i have heard it about residential.
This is a direct result of you being in the union.
Open shops competing on projects have to bid LOW just to get the job.

The fact is that in union controlled areas the union is getting the job regardless. It's just a matter if which union contractor gets it.

I will say, residential can be cut throat as well. It all depends on the area and how busy it is. Once it slows down the dead wood floats away.

I myself rarely "bid" on jobs. I typically just give a proposal.
Most of my work is repeat/referral customers.
 

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Just starting in the trade - go union. You can't beat the pay, benefits, and training as an apprentice. It sounds as though you would also be better suited to the type of work we do. Let's be honest, though, there are a lot of repetitive and mundane tasks in all areas of electrical construction. Plug-n-switch anyone?
 

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This is a direct result of you being in the union.
Open shops competing on projects have to bid LOW just to get the job.

The fact is that in union controlled areas the union is getting the job regardless. It's just a matter if which union contractor gets it.

I will say, residential can be cut throat as well. It all depends on the area and how busy it is. Once it slows down the dead wood floats away.

I myself rarely "bid" on jobs. I typically just give a proposal.
Most of my work is repeat/referral customers.
I agree 100% Pete and can tell from the first fight with you that you are not fighting for work. In all honesty a top notch resi electrician can make better than a guy building power houses.

I think I should have tried to be more precise in what I said;
Don't do tract home residential.

I worked at a guys house a couple times this week 12M$ home and the only that seperates it from commercial is that one family lives there. I was given the grand tour and still can't believe how beautifully stunning this house is.
 

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Thanks for the great advice guys.

I'm pretty set on joining an open shop, but my choice now is going for a commercial, residential, or voice-data-video program. I come from a IT/Programmer background, and while reading the descriptions online provide insights, it still doesn't replace the experiences some of you have had in those fields. If some of you could share, that'd be awesome :D
 
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