What is a Sheet Metal Worker?
Sheet metal workers design, fabricate, assemble, install and repair sheet metal products.
In general, sheet metal workers:
- Lay out, measure and mark dimensions and reference lines on sheet metal according to drawings or templates
- Supply, install, service and repair air handling equipment, furnaces, fans and air terminal devices
- Use laser or plasma cutting equipment, numerically-controlled or computerized equipment, hand and power shears, snips and light metal-working equipment to cut, drill, punch, or bend and shape sheet metal
- Fasten with bolts, screws, cement, rivets, adhesives, solder or by welding
- Install and repair sheet metal products and ensure installations conform to specifications and building codes
- Do metal cladding of insulated piping and equipment on industrial sites
- Manufacture and install flashing, coping for roofing applications
Skills & Abilities
Sheet Metal work is most rewarding for people who enjoy developing special skills and putting them to use in a variety of ways.
To be successful, sheet metal workers need:
- To be in good physical condition
- A mechanical aptitude
- The ability to lift in excess of 25 kilograms
- Eye-hand coordination, spatial and form perception, good eyesight and manual dexterity
- The ability to visualize a finished product from a drawing
- A good background in practical mathematics, geometry and blueprint reading
- The ability to stand for long periods, do some moderately heavy lifting and carrying, and work in high, awkward and noisy places
- Patience, dependability and accuracy
The term of apprenticeship for a sheet metal worker is 4 years (four 12-month periods) including a minimum of 1425 hours of on-the-job training and 10 weeks of technical training each year.
An applicant who previously completed courses of study or work experience related to the Sheet Metal Worker trade or holds a related journeyman certificate and has the employer’s recommendation, may qualify for credit that could reduce the term of apprenticeship.
A person who has previous training or work experience in the trade and wants to determine their level of skill and knowledge for entry or advanced standing in an apprenticeship program may apply for a Prior Learning Assessment.
To find answers to your questions and learn more about a career as a Sheet Metal Worker, contact Sheet Metal Workers Local 8.
For a quick summary of a career as a sheet metal worker, ask about the sheet metal worker trade card.