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  1. #1
    I'm working in the trade now, just started a few months ago, because I really want to learn the trade. But so far all I'm doing is picking up trash and hanging duct, at every job site. Get a feeling thats all they want me to do, so I feel like asking them why not just hire a mexican day laborer? Getting sick of it too cuz I been crawling in mud and am not learning ****. What is the best way to learn this trade w/o paying thousands of dollars for school? I would think it would be in the best interest of my employer to have me learn everything so that more jobs could be done. Currently, I feel like I just follow along w/ the other installer to clean up his ****, either that or he doesn't wan't me to learn. Could I learn from books? I would estimate that if I am taken through a full residential install of Heat and AC that I would pretty much know the basics, but always end up with the **** work.

    Also I'm signed up w/ a Union for a PreApprentice Program. Unrelated to the non union job I have. I attend class once a week for 15 weeks. That along with several tests will determine if I'm selected for apprenticeship by next summer. They give credit for work experience.......only thing now is they are giving a hard time cuz I work for a non union shop. Again there, all I been learning is about safety and basic math.

    Feeling lost

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    214
    it aint glamorous your learning the same way i did.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Portage
    Posts
    909

    Frown reply

    quit crying,and tell your boss "thank you" for the experience. every thing you do is another mark on your resume.you have to start somewhere,you think you are ready to install or do service on your own?
    I don’t always drink beer, but when I do I prefer Dos-Equis. I am the most interesting man in the world. Stay thirsty my friends.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    SE Michigan
    Posts
    17,898
    First, you must stop cussing on the forum and second, we have all been there.
    " Kill a Commie for Mommy! "

    - Colonel David Hackworth (1930-2005), Korean War Vet

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Posts
    4,970
    #1 better get a new attitude being with that one you will never go anywhere. We all pretty much went through that when we started and being honest the world doesnt owe you anything but a chance to prove yourself. Do you think that your owner got where he is by letting someone that is trying to learn telling him how he should run his business or how he should train someone. I have had rookies come to me with no real experiance start out installing and come to me with in a month or two and tell me that I should send them away to school for training at being a service tech. Ya right Im sending someone that hasnt been with me long enough to prove to me that they have the ability or are loyal enough to stay with me if I did pay for schooling. A lot of guys look at it that starting at the bottom isnt for them, well if you never learn why the ducting is put in the way it is how do you know if something isnt the way it should be once you get to be a tech if thats what you want. Now I dont really know if by what you said if thats what you are trying to be but in this trade what is wrong with being the best tinner you can be. Thats how I got my start, a sheetmetal worker and I will tell you what , there are not a lot of jobs that I cant go in and tell you why a part failed if it was cause by the install or ducting. Once you prove that you are better on installs than anyone else you will have a bargaining chip to get higher up the ladder wether that is service or running thre install crews. Just a word of advice , dont think you are more valuable then you really are. If it gets around no shop will want you and then you might have to find something else to do and Im sure they will not be looking for someone that doesnt want to start at the beginning either.


    P.S. If they hired a Mexican day labor as you call it ...... Why would they need you ? If he is willing to do it I would train him, He probably wouldnt be *****ing at his job. Oh and by the way if you would have started in the plumbing trade and would have told me that is the ****tiest job ever ...... Well then yes I would probably agree being you sure wouldnt be putting in duct as an apprentice.

    [Edited by dec on 01-30-2005 at 01:56 PM]

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Posts
    6,956
    wait till you have 10 years in and running an install and you end up babysitting the bosses son who is useless(like Ts on a bull)and just there for the summer.just do your best and concentrate on that union angle,and all the hard work no matter how dead end it is will pay off in the years to come...because your building a work attitude right now that you'll have the rest of your years.
    "when in doubt...jump it out" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1qEZHhJubY

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    SE Michigan
    Posts
    17,898
    I remember running duct in the middle of winter for two houses on crawls. I just went back to work after getting over the flu and had to go under these homes and lay on 4 inches of frozen water all day. After a few minutes in one spot you start to get wet. Even in a rubber suit, scooting around in slush for 8 hours is no fun. The rubber suit did not help much either. Hope this makes you feel better. Hang in there, this to shall pass.
    " Kill a Commie for Mommy! "

    - Colonel David Hackworth (1930-2005), Korean War Vet

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Posts
    4,970
    I hate even admitting to this but when I was young starting out I use to work 10 to 12 hours in a day and my boss would not even know I was working longer then 8 hours being it was out of town working. He was totaly impressed out how much was getting done when he would fly in to check up on the job. I would just let him think I was doing it in 8-hours and being I was learning and gaining the ability to figure it out for myself without having to have someone telling me every step, I learned a lot more and faster. At that stage of my life it wasnt about money, I WAS LEARNING A TRADE. And if that is what it took so be it. I know a lot of guys would say they would never work for nothing being they deserve it. I understand what your saying but sometimes what you earn in knowlege and not what you put in your pocket now will end up filling your pockets a whole lot more in the future then you possibly could have imagined. I remember one day at a union shop I was just trying to finish something that was going to take me 5- minutes more after quiting time. I didnt want to have to put away my tools and have to pull them out the next day for 5 minutes on that project. some journeyman walked over and asked why I was costing the boss overtime. I just told them I wasnt going to put it on the time card ,I would just do it to get it done . They proceeded to chew my butt out for doing something for free being the union fought for years to get overtime. shhhheeezzz you cant win lol

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    1,841
    If you won't a easier job go to school for something besides hvac.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Ft.Worth,Tx
    Posts
    4,584
    I came out of the Army 1976 and worked on C.B. Radio's and tried to feed my family, until I worked handing duct to lead installer until I knew pipe sizes,wyes,and sizes of register's for every room. He did let me un-role copper and put armaflex and t-stat wire on. I worked for a year before I was let loose with torch. Learn the basic's of airflow and design of ductwork it will help you in the future. If you don't want to pick up material then ,ask the installer if you could run the copper or mount wire for thermostat.Ask for things to do don't grip about the labor your doing that is why he does it,he thinks your not skilled enough or want to learn anything he would teach you.

    If you don't want to do that then find another trade, your not suited for this one...

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    manitowoc wisconsin
    Posts
    4,943
    You could always go flip burgers at McDonalds.
    Take your time & do it right!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    peoples republic of maryland
    Posts
    956
    Boy, what do you wanna be Donald Trump right out of the womb? Shut up and be better at picking up the trash and running duct and then you'll get some more complicated work. Be responsible, take pride in whatever your doing, and they'll see it and eventually reward it. people have to see that they can rely on you in other responsibilities, unsupervised, BEFORE they give more complicated tasks to you.
    I started the same way except I had 3yrs of hvacr school experience. My first employer put me right where you are, and I hated it. It was the best experience of my life. I learned the trade on many different levels and now I can do any part of this trade. I now run my own show and can charge accordingly (read: I live very well) All from starting like you; crawling in the mud and picking up trash at the job sight.
    "The meek shall inherit the earth"
    "he that's walking with wise persons will become wise, but he that is having dealings with the stupid ones will fare badly" Proverbs 13:20
    "Pressure is something people feel when they don't know what their doing". Peyton Manning-superbowl MVP

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    PRARIE VILLAGE,KS
    Posts
    112
    Hey, I know when you are young, it seems like they are taking advantage of you, but stick with it. I'm 57, and when I swithced over to full time HVAC,( I was in maintenace before, fairly cushy), I was 50, and there I was up to my knees in mud, hooking up AC's in the projects, but I learned thru all the pain, and now have some decent skills.
    Don't quit unless you have something better already lined up, and if you learn to be a tinner, you will work even when the techs are not working... Good luck...

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