Ingalls, $50.00 an hour pipe weld test, My experience

If you’re a recruiter/staffing agency

I am by no means a qualified person for HR matters but I suggest the following things be somehow addressed in the screening process.

Make sure the welder knows…

  1. The 1st test is hard and has a high failure rate. It requires the welder to be able to weld a 1/2″ Schedule 10 socket weld in a restricted access location without melting any part of the pipe wall on the inside.
  2. There is NO PRACTICE TIME in which you can practice that specific weld!
  3. You are only allowed to fail 2 tests with any one process. Since most of the testing is GTAW(TIG) any failure makes your next weld a make or break!
  4. Walking the cup isn’t allowed or possible. The welders should be able to freehand which many can. Add that to the restriction and thickness and things become interesting.
  5. The machine settings are set by the test supervisor and cannot be adjusted. 85 Amps for the socket weld will work but where you put the 85 amps and for how long can be key!
  6. The test supervisor is not there to give training or help and may not even like you being there. Listen very carefully to his/her instructions and follow them. He can put you on the road for any reason probably.
  7. The PPE supplied is all that can be used. (I did see a variety of gloves so bringing some you like may be a good idea but have the provided ones with you!
  8. No Auto Lens!
  9. If you fail, you cannot test again. This would be a good reason to test welders BEFORE the long drawn out process. Just a few minutes of seeing what it actually feels like could help the welder decide whether the other time is worth it. I’m not saying give a real test, but at least check out the basic skills. (I’d be glad to come help “supervise” that for  a “nominal” fee 🙂  )
  10. Because of the parking issue, getting there early may cut into your “time”…Its $50.00 an hour with Perdeim, but some people were tore up over the parking time.
  11. Pulling an insert is a different method for welding a root pass and is what is done on all butt joints, though in some ways it’s easier, in other ways it may be more difficult. The restricted access may make something new such as this much more difficult.
  12. CuNi (Copper Nickel) is a very different animal. Should you make it to that point, having CuNi experience will be necessary.

I’m sure some more people are much more familiar with the process and I only have experience with ONE test of many.

PLEASE add comments that may help someone going through this process. If your “Agency” is offering something special, please feel free to paste that information along with contact info.


5 thoughts on “Ingalls, $50.00 an hour pipe weld test, My experience”

  1. The Yard probably has a apprenticeship program but does not have enough people for the demand. I felt I was a good welder and always thought you tested for the work you would be doing. The company to save on money should have let you practice a few days to get comfortable before the test. Performance and passage I believe would have gone up. The government is loosing dollars on this and the not being able to come back and test again is wrong. There are good welders out there.

    1. I agree. Though for $50.00 an hour, some may have the perception that an individual can “do anything” but the truth is that the skills and abilities among welders vary widely among industries, companies, and individuals.
      The guy that has spend his life welding on parts for NASA is NOT ready to climb in a boiler and reach 3 tubes deep in an economizer.
      I have been supervising/administering welder tests for years. Not any to 248, but I’m familiar with the content. Its a shame that so much time is put into the processing of people to only have this as the screening point.

    2. The shipyard does have an apprenticeship program and it takes 5 years. To get journeyman’s. To get into the apprenticeship program you have to apply for a position through the website and go through their onboarding process by applying for a job that puts you in it.

  2. Good effort on your part. The last time I did serious pipe work it was ASME sec IX and sec VIII
    B31.1 and B31.3. They gave me 2 days to practice withering best guys. I passed Alum Stainless and Steel from 1/16 to unlimited wall thickness. I learned all about pre heat n post heat. The company was not union. But moved from Ma to Louisiana

  3. Some practice time would have helped me but Im sure a few people just walked in cold and passed…I just didn’t have that level of skill.

    Have a good one!

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