What Do Fiberglass Laminators and Fabricators Do?
A number of products are constructed out of fiberglass, and in order to get the best items possible, people rely on experienced fiberglass laminators and fabricators. People in this profession will be responsible for laminating sheets of fiberglass on various molds in order to create boat hulls and decks. This same process can be used in the development of cars, golf carts and various other day-to-day items. There is projected to be a small decline in the number of fiberglass fabricators that will be needed in the next decade, but it is expected to be a very minute change. 4% decrease in growth over the next 10 years is projected to occur, and there are only supposed to be around 290 job openings a year.
Fiberglass Laminators and Fabricators Skills and Abilities
Certain proficiencies can be quite useful in this industry. Knowledge of production processes, quality control and raw materials can be very handy. Experience in certain areas of chemistry such as understanding disposal techniques and potential danger signs can make you a very qualified candidate. You should also be familiar with public safety measures to ensure everyone is kept safe while the materials are being constructed. You should be able to monitor yourself and everyone around you to make sure everyone is doing their job correctly. Arm-hand steadiness, trunk strength and other forms of physical prowess can also prove to be essential.
Fiberglass Laminators and Fabricators Duties
Some of the duties that you should expect to perform include using rollers to smooth out seams or remove air bubbles. You should also reasonably expect to spray catalysts and resins onto dies and molds. You may also be the one responsible for selecting what types of materials are best for a specific project. Various other aspects of the fiberglass fabrication process will be part of your job description, so some of these other tasks may need to be performed as well:
- Inspecting and cleaning equipment when needed.
- Loading materials into furnaces or ovens.
- Measuring dimensions to make sure everything matches a customer’s specifications.
- Creating chemical solutions by mixing materials.
- Putting the substances into molds.
Fiberglass Laminators and Fabricators Tools and Technology
There are numerous pieces of equipment you will need to become adept with using before you can become a fiberglass laminator. You will need to know how to use bending machines, laboratory heaters and paint sprayers. Becoming proficient with different types of software can also come in handy, and certain kinds you should learn about include data entry, word processing and spreadsheet software.
Education and Training for Fiberglass Laminators and Fabricators
Most fiberglass fabricators and laminators are able to get their job with only a high school diploma. Some people even enter the field with less than that. There are no real instructional programs you will be required to take, but you can expect to receive a good amount of onsite training before being set loose on the fiberglass.
Fiberglass Laminators and Fabricators Salary
Numerous factors go into determining your salary, including the state you live in and what your experience level is. Someone who is new to the field and does not have a ton of proficiency can expect to make around $9.65/hour. On the other side of the scale, more experienced fabricators can make around $20.63/hour. However, the median wage for this kind of work tends to be closer to $13.92/hour.
Fiberglass Laminators and Fabricators Jobs by Geography
The industries with the highest demand for this line of work are plastics product manufacturing and ship and boat building companies. The top three states with the highest levels of employment include Indiana, Florida and Texas. However, if you are looking for the states with the highest annual mean wage, those would be Alaska, Mississippi and North Dakota.