Metal fabricators fabricate, position, align, and fit parts of structural metal products. Typical duties include:*
- Position, align, fit, and weld parts to form complete units or subunits, following blueprints and layout specifications, and using jigs, welding torches, and hand tools.
- Verify conformance of work pieces to specifications, using squares, rulers, and measuring tapes.
- Tack-weld fitted parts together.
- Lay out and examine metal stock or work pieces to be processed to ensure that specifications are met.
- Align and fit parts according to specifications, using jacks, turnbuckles, wedges, drift pins, pry bars, and hammers.
- Locate and mark work piece bending and cutting lines, allowing for stock thickness, machine and welding shrinkage, and other component specifications.
- Position or tighten braces, jacks, clamps, ropes, or bolt straps, or bolt parts in position for welding or riveting.
- Study engineering drawings and blueprints to determine materials requirements and task sequences.
- Move parts into position, manually or with hoists or cranes.
- Set up and operate fabricating machines, such as brakes, rolls, shears, flame cutters, grinders, and drill presses, to bend, cut, form, punch, drill, or otherwise form and assemble metal components.
*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition, Structural metal fabricators and fitters. Retrieved 4/29/13. http://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/51-2041.00