Ironworker (Episode 54)

Ironworker (Episode 54)


There are many steps between
a blueprint and a finished building. Today, we meet one of the key
players involved in construction. These workers install and assemble what is essentially the skeleton of a building. Let’s meet the iron worker. Hi. I’m Viviana. Hi! I’m Lisa. Nice to meet you! It’s nice to meet you! So, you’re here. Let’s get you into some safety gear and some work gear
and take you off to the job site. I’m ready to work for you. Let’s do it. There are two aspects of, um, the iron worker. There’s the reinforcing steel and structural steel. I’ve worked my entire
career here at Namdor and we specialize in reinforcing steel. That is what we do. And they’re two very different things. We place reinforcing steel. So when you look at a building and you see concrete, the rebar is actually in the concrete. The biggest part of the job
is probably packing and tying steel. We pack the steel out by hand and we lay it and tie it. When we arrive at the job site bright and early, and kind of have a pep talk about
what’s going to go on today, what we need to accomplish and go out, have a look at what needs to be done, and sort of delegate different roles. When we come to a job,
we basically come after the formwork. Formwork gets laid down. And once there’s a wooden deck, we come in, we put down our steel and concrete is poured on top of that. Lisa, where are we right now? So, Viviana, we’re between Pandora and Fisgard in Victoria at the job site called The Union. Gotcha. And what we’re looking at right here
is our last slab on this building. All right, well show me some rebar up close. Absolutely. Let’s go. It’s an apprenticeship-based training, so you can either enter the job without any training, um, get trained on the job and
there are opportunities to go to school afterwards to get your journeyman’s ticket. At BCIT, they teach the rebar program and it’s basically consists of a 23-week program that’s broken up into seven week segments. Usually, we work a 40-hour workweek, eight hours each day. Um, we like to start early in the morning, but we can put in some overtime. And you can put in some serious hours. It’s absolutely not seasonal work and I’ve, you know, I’ve worked six days
a week in the winter time. It’s… it depends on the job. Spatial perception is extremely important. You’re doing a very dangerous job. Cutting, you’re throwing steel around. To know where things are in space and where you are in space to keep yourself safe. It’s a very physical job and tying is very demanding on your hands and your wrists. So, I’ve got a piece of wire
and I’ve got a tool. Yeah. What are we doing? So that’s our primary tool that we’re using—and rebar—those are called pliers. You’re going to want to put that wire around the bottom of your carry bar, right here. Okay. Grab that with the teeth of your pliers. You’re going to cross over. Oh, wow. Keep twisting it, same direction. And this can be dangerous because
you can break your wire, but what we usually do to… Ah, I broke the wire! [Viviana laughs.] Yeah, but it’s still holding! It’s good! When we get our drawings, we see this steel as dots and lines. And now to take that out into reality when you have a bar that’s represented by a dot, which is almost like a puzzle. We’re packing, so essentially we’re lifting weights all day. If you’ve done deadlifts at the gym, that’s what you’re doing. There is a great sense of accomplishment when you see that structure standing at the end of it. You know, you know you had a big part of that. And that’s going to be
standing for years to come. I love this career. It’s wonderful. Do what you feel passionate about. You have to find what you’re best suited to. Thanks so much. I had a lot of fun, Lisa. Thanks for coming out, Viviana. We’ll see you later. Once again, this is Career Trek and I’m Viviana, reminding you that this career could be yours. We’ll see you next time.

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