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Everything You Wanted To Know About Rig Welding

At some point, you may have heard the term ‘rig welding’. This term can be used to describe a couple of positions. Rig welding can either involve working and living on an oil rig, or being a part of a rig welding team which travels to job sites in order to help complete large welding projects.

This physically-demanding and dangerous position represents the entry-level in the oil rig world, making it ideal for anyone to obtain a position in the industry, even if they’ve had very little or no experience with working on an oil rig. However, certification is required in order to become a rig welder.

Rig Welding

What Rig Welders Do

There are many tasks which can fall under a rig welder’s long list of duties. A rig welder is responsible for completing modifications and repairs.

Oil rigs need constant maintenance and repair due to their daily operations being so hard on mechanical equipment. Breakdowns of that equipment are common on oil rigs, and rig welders are there to ensure that broken machinery is restored to working order.

In addition to machinery, rig welders are also responsible for the continual repairing of scaffolding and derricks, which are constantly exposed not only to the wear and tear by the workers who use them, but also to the harsh elements.

Rig welders are also responsible for the maintenance and repair of the equipment they use on a daily basis.

Requirements For Rig Welders

Because a rig welder’s primary area of concern is often in the new construction of metal frameworks, they must possess a good understanding in several areas. The ability to understand fabrication and the difference between high-pressure and regular pipe are just two requirements that a rig welder must meet. As well, they must be able to read layouts and blueprints.

A rig welder must also be physically fit and capable of working in a wide variety of conditions and environments. As well, rig welders must be able to tolerate working in high places. Being a rig welder also means that a lot of time is spent away from home, which may make this position more suited to single individuals.

Both provincial and national certification may be required in order to apply for a position as a rig welder. This will depend on the type of welding job desired and whether the individual will prefer staying in one place or traveling with a team to welding sites that are located outside of the province or country.

Benefits Of Being A Rig Welder

One of the most significant benefits of being a rig welder is the salary. Most rig welders can earn a starting salary of $65,000 to $80,000 per year, depending on whether they are an above or underwater welder.

Another benefit of being a rig welder is the availability of work. Not only does rig welding involve the building of structures, but it can also involve the decommissioning of structures located in mature oil fields.