A metal building erector (or an iron worker as he is usually referred to) is an individual who is responsible for the efficient and successful erection of commercial (and sometimes residential) buildings. People hired for these jobs are required to be extremely hand-on with what they are entrusted to do.
Working at this position means that you will have to know the construction business inside out. Since you will be working with many people to ensure that the different aspects of the work are carried out properly, you will need to be great at working in a team environment. Also, the work of a metal building erector requires a lot of physical energy, which is why it is imperative that you are a physically strong individual.
A high school diploma or a GED is sufficient to work as a metal building erector. Previous experience in a similar capacity, or an apprenticeship is considered a plus point. Most of the training for this job is done while working, so an apprenticeship is probably where one should start. Once you know the work somewhat, you won’t have much problem starting off in a real setting.
Some important duties of a metal building erector include:
• Read and interpret building designs and schematics to determine what type of support is required
• Determine the type and amount of required materials and labor and make arrangements to acquire both
• Create and maintain effective liaison with suppliers to ensure timely delivery of supplies and tools
• Prepare materials and calibrate machinery prior to performing building erection work
• Use cranes and telehandlers to hoist and position metal components into place
• Install fiberglass insulation and standing seam roofs
• Rig, hoist and move metallic items within the work area to ensure correct positioning
• Guide metal loads into position by following set instructions
• Bolt and weld metal works together and ensure that all sections are leveled properly
• Perform steelworks dismantling for renovation or pull-down purposes
• Cut, melt and weld metal sections and rods by using metal shears, torches and welding equipment
• Force structural metal components into place by using tools such as crowbars and jacks
• Insert sealing strips, wiring and insulation materials, along with installing reinforcement bars
• Verify horizontal and vertical alignment of metal structures by using plumb bobs and laser equipment
• Erect precast concrete components for metal structures such as building, bridges and towers
• Assemble hoisting equipment or rigging, including cables, pulleys and hooks, to ensure easy and safe movement