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  1. #40
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by ironpit View Post
    Your tools next! Give him the loaners. Like rounded out 1/4 & 5/16 nut drivers .
    gave a rounded 5/16 to my cousin lol

    Quote Originally Posted by John Markl View Post
    They haven't mentioned tools yet....when they do, I'm gonna tell them to hit the local pawnshops and scarf up the tools that the last semester's students sold after the government paid for them...
    Quote Originally Posted by ironpit View Post
    We do that around here. Usually get a lot of fieldpieces and flukes in the shops.
    true

  2. #41
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Corryton,TN
    Posts
    69
    if you want to be in the hvac industry you should get into sales
    Quote Originally Posted by Eykos View Post
    Hey guys,
    I've been lurking the forums for six months or so now, just getting my head around the "feel" of HVAC guys out there.
    I just had a couple of bad experiences lately and I figured I'd come here and vent for some input from you guys that have been in the job for a while.

    I'm 27 years old, an Iraq veteran, I'm just starting my second semester for HVAC-R.

    When I got out of the Army, I had a hard time trying to figure out what I wanted to do.
    I wasted two semesters of my GI Bill on Gen Ed's, trying to find that "thing" that I wanted to do.
    Considered a history degree, blew my classes out of the water, got great grades, but I didn't want to spend my life in academia.
    Considered a business degree, picked up two accounting/business classes the next semester, same thing, great grades, just not my cup of tea.

    Not for lack of ability or lack of intelligence, but rather for a lack of a reason to keep going with the path I was on because I'd be miserable in life.


    Well, I started talking to an old friend who I had gone to high school with, and had recently gotten back in touch with him.
    While I had joined the Army right after high school, he had gone to school for HVAC-R, and now he's got a decent job working on refrigeration systems on container ships, he makes good money, he's not hurting for work, he says he could travel with the job fairly easy if he wanted to, and he's constantly challenged by what he does.

    So, I was like "Really? Hmm..I'll check it out".
    So I did.
    I loved it. I loved the idea of having a "skill" that I would be good at.
    The idea that I go get "training" for this specific job, and then I go and do this job.
    It appealled to the "training" mindset that that's been part of my life in the Army my entire adult life.
    I loved the idea of the job itself, just enough physics and hands on mechanical knowhow to keep your mind busy, but enough room for you to move and not have to absord constant useless "fluff" as you do in pursuit of a liberal arts degree.
    (Why one needs to learn "French Medieval Poetry" or some other useless thing to get a M.B.A. was always beyond me)

    I found this forum, read the experiences of guys in the job.
    I hit up those "average salary" websites, and HVAC work is fairly solid, and seems to have a decent amount of upward motion over time.
    I browsed Youtube and watched guys in the field talk about their work.
    Even found a Mike Rowe clip where he addressed Congress about the shortage of trade-skills, which got me very "Hooah" about my new chosen profession.


    So, I ran with it. And then I ran into a brick wall that I never expected.

    My family. They acted like I had told them I wanted to scrape porta-potties the rest of my life.
    I come from a family that prides itself on "education".
    Doctors, lawyers, teachers, a mortician thrown in there, a mayor of a town and a few accountants.

    Me telling them that I was going to school for HVAC went over like a box of dirt.

    I can still hear my grandfather.
    "The Army is paying for your school and you're wasting it, you could be anything, why you won't get a real degree is beyond me".

    Try as I might to explain that this is what I want to do, that being a lawyer, teacher, doctor, accountant, etc..would be like living a small death each day, because of the sheer..boredom..of it..

    ..they still don't get it.

    It's a small town, upper-class Southern family.
    You leave high school, you do your obligatory time in the Army, you get out, you go to college, meet your wife, settle down, join a country club, go to Church, and people raise their glasses to you after the funeral and then go play golf.

    That's how it's done.

    I don't want that.

    I want a job where I am the product of the worth of my own two hands.
    Where respect is earned, not given because of a piece of paper that you spent money on, but guarantees nothing.



    Anyway, that's my dilemma.
    No real "questions" behind the purpose of this thread, just a bit of complaining and fishing from some input from you guys that are actually in the trade.

    I'm still sticking with this job, I love what I'm learning to do, and in some strange way the opposition I'm getting to it has kind of made me even more firm in pursuing it, because if I cut and ran now, and went and did something I'd be miserable doing rather than face the apparant "shame" of getting my hands dirty, then what the hell have I done but back down in the face of the very thing that seems to make people think the "trades" are somehow a lower form of earning a living, no matter the skill, knowledge, hard work, or expertise involved?

    Alright, that's my vent.
    Cheers.

  3. #42
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Corryton,TN
    Posts
    69
    listen to your dad and get the degree

  4. #43
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Posts
    461
    Quote Originally Posted by buzhall View Post
    listen to your dad and get the degree
    And your reason?

  5. #44
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Corryton,TN
    Posts
    69
    well,more than likely he will end up working for a local single owner hvac company as a helper or maybe a technician doing tune ups or pm's.he will have no benefits to speak of, possible lay offs in slack time,sore knees when he reaches his late 40's,and no retirement. With a degree he can move beyond a service tech job.He can get into estimating or management with a bigger mechanical contractor,i just think at that after 35 years of running service calls that it would be nice for me to have a degree,maybe now would be a good time for me to start teaching and get my ole wore out body out of the weather. And besides you should always listen to your dad, if hes like my dad he is most always right.

  6. #45
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    State College, PA
    Posts
    1,167
    Tell your grandfather to go s_ _t in his hat.

    Also realize there are many white collar jobs in this trade. Get some experience and you could then go back to school and be an engineer with some understanding of how things work in the real world.

    Best of luck to you.

    Don't let others take YOUR dream away!
    Can someone please explain to me -
    Why is there never enough time to do it right the first time, but plenty of time to do it twice?


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  7. #46
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    322

    Tridium in a home

    Quote Originally Posted by XcelTech View Post
    that is great!! I have enough trouble trying to sell people what they need! Computer toys are fun though!

  8. #47
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    3,615
    Agree with the advice of "get your degree"!! As "he" said, "Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you'll get". A skill is good and admirable, but a skill AND a degree is much better. For the short time it takes to get it, and the benefits you've got owed you, for your own sake and future, finish the degree. Look beyond your present "likes" bite your lip and get the degree done. Of the four folks in our office....uh....ALL OF THEM HAVE COLLEGE DEGREES!!! You are at a prime time to take advantage of the ability to get the degree, so get it done. Deal with your "I wantas" later in your life, you've got plenty of time for them!! Or don't do it, make excusses why you didn't (for the rest of your life), and later on WISH you had. If you're "undecided" then get a business degree and you'll use that knowledge forever.

  9. #48
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    kansas
    Posts
    9
    i was the exact same ( besides the military ) i was smart. great grades and very book smart. at the same time from the time i was able to pick up a wrench i was mechanicly inclined. look at it this way..being smart, mechanicly inclined and a huge drive to be sucessful. thats a tripple threat. i tried the school thing. not my cup of tea. i cant sit behind a desk or iron my clothes each day. if this world ever comes to and end whos gonna survive is what i was always told. guys like us. im only 24 years old and still have alot to learn but it sure feels good when someone with more experience then you asks for your advise or oppinion. theres alot of money to be made in this field. some days you wanna pound your head into a wall, some days are slow but each day is never the same and i love it. the first time you get a call out to a elderly lady with no heat or someone with health issues. sure makes me feel good about what i do.

  10. #49
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Columbus, Ohio/ Bagram, Afghanistan
    Posts
    54
    I left the military after Desert Storm, lived here and there, did this and that. Had some good paying jobs and some not so. In my mid-30's I decided that jobs weren't going to cut it anymore, I needed a marketable skill. After losing one last job due to downsizing, my central air went out. An older gentleman came out to the house and did our repair. It was he, who talked me into pursuing HVAC as a career. I applied for veteran's benefits but was eventually denied. That's right, a vet being denied veteran's benefits. In the mean time some terrible things occurred in New York City and the Pentagon, that's right, 9/11. My next call was to my local National Guard unit. I found out that they had a vacancy in their HVAC/R shop. I enlisted went off to do my training and returned home to resume my apprenticeship that I'd started before I left. Long story short, 11 years later, I'm now running the HVAC/R shop in my National Guard unit, I've been deployed 4 times, you want a challenge, do HVAC work in a warzone, and my current job is Air Quality Technician Manager for the Ohio Dept. of Administrative Services. It all started with me filling a void in my life by getting back into uniform, you could surely say that that was the first step into an amazing career so far.

  11. #50
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Central Florida
    Posts
    731
    Quote Originally Posted by buzhall View Post
    well,more than likely he will end up working for a local single owner hvac company as a helper or maybe a technician doing tune ups or pm's.he will have no benefits to speak of, possible lay offs in slack time,sore knees when he reaches his late 40's,and no retirement. With a degree he can move beyond a service tech job.He can get into estimating or management with a bigger mechanical contractor,i just think at that after 35 years of running service calls that it would be nice for me to have a degree,maybe now would be a good time for me to start teaching and get my ole wore out body out of the weather. And besides you should always listen to your dad, if hes like my dad he is most always right.
    One of the guys at our shop (really sharp f***er) went back to college and got his engineering degree; went to work for Emerson in St. Louis this May.

    Nice to have a pipeline to someone on the inside!
    JUST A LITTLE CLOSER AND THE LITTER BOX IS ALL MINE!

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