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LINEMAN: How’s the work?

Discussion in 'RD's Lounge' started by Spectra18, Aug 15, 2019.

  1. Spectra18

    Spectra18 Well-Known Member

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    My brother in law and I were discussing new career paths, thought somebody would give us some info on being a lineman. We’re both in our 30’s.
     
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  2. Big B Hova

    Big B Hova HOSS

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    My ex girlfriend worked the pole. Her base pay wasn't much but she did well on tips
     
  3. RaceTec

    RaceTec Well-Known Member

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    Everyone that I know that is a lineman is doing VERY well and VERY busy... I would personally go electrician because then you can break out and start your own company. One of my friends that is an electrician just got his first Lambo after he had his first Ferrari...
     
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  4. Sleek-Jet

    Sleek-Jet Well-Known Member

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    I can't find lineman right now, very high demand for that job skill.

    We are putting another apprentice on.

    The union halls around here are hiring quite.a few guys off the street for apprenticeships, don't know where you are located.
     
  5. racetrash

    racetrash Well-Known Member

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    Just remember, after your done being a pole jockey, you will most likely have no knees left. 30 years of ATT got mine.
     
  6. Spectra18

    Spectra18 Well-Known Member

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    I’m in riverside his in Long Beach. His hoping to become a lingerie shoreman
    ;)


     
  7. HBCraig

    HBCraig Well-Known Member

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    Do this.

    I have the exact same thing happen to a friend. Union electrician and now is going out on his own
     
  8. Spectra18

    Spectra18 Well-Known Member

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    But tell me more im listening
     
  9. USMC2010

    USMC2010 Well-Known Member

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    One of my brother is, his oldest son is, many of my friends from HS are. A friend here has a son about to go to school. There is always work.
     
  10. Spectra18

    Spectra18 Well-Known Member

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    How’s the apprentice pay vs full ?
     
  11. USMC2010

    USMC2010 Well-Known Member

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    I don't know.
     
  12. hallett21

    hallett21 Well-Known Member

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    Union inside wireman (electrician) starts at 17.50ish with a raise to 19 at end of year 1. Top out around $40 in LA. Full medical for you and your family after a few months full time.

    5 year program.

    Lineman make more.

    Edit.

    Forgot pension & vacation pay. Pension does not kick in until you’re vested. Can’t remember about vacation pay.


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  13. Emac

    Emac Well-Known Member

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    PM sent
     
  14. FreeBird236

    FreeBird236 Well-Known Member

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    My FIL was a lineman for 55 years (#1 in seniority IBEW) of course he didn't climb past his late sixties, but I don't believe he would change a thing. The work can be very hard at times, when everyone is hunkered down in a storm you might be on a pole. I know the camaraderie is what he enjoyed the most, it's like a club.
    My FIL is still kicking at 90 and his knees aren't that bad.:D
     
  15. Sleek-Jet

    Sleek-Jet Well-Known Member

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    I'm out here in the middle of the country, so can't tell you what Hall to go apply. Apprenticeships are typically 4 years, mostly OJT with some book work.

    Journeyman lineman here at the city are making $55/hr plus a couple hundred hours of OT and standby pay a year.

    Neighboring towns are paying a little better, the IOU (ComEd) is even better with all the OT you can work. Contractors are slammed with with work right now.
     
  16. racetrash

    racetrash Well-Known Member

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    Nothing like being up on the pole hanging cable at 2 in the morning..full rain gear, duct tape on your wrists..aaahhhh, the good old days!!
     
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  17. Danger Dave

    Danger Dave Well-Known Member

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    I think that's a different trade altogether.
     
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  18. bldrinker

    bldrinker Well-Known Member

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    Lineman make bank.

    I do the planning for Electrical Distribution. It’s allot safer and easier work and we still do well on income.
     
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  19. Taboma

    Taboma Well-Known Member

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    Hot Damn :D:D
    Anyway you could talk a few of these Electrical contractor buddies into writing a "How I filled my garages with Ferrari's and Lambo's electrical contracting" how-to book ?
    Cuz I'm sure there's a shit-ton of extremely talented ECs bustin their nuts to make a living who'd love to read what they're doing wrong, or not doing right. :rolleyes: :p
    Of course I knew a few EC competitors like your friend, they were rollin in the dough one day, then all their shit got hauled off the next :eek::eek:.
    Contracting can be one seriously Bi-Polar Bitch :p:p:p :D
     
  20. Rayson1971

    Rayson1971 Well-Known Member

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    Start apprentice at 40 percent journeyman. Jw scale 46 and change. 3 months after start medical kicks in. After 2000 hrs pension starts . Depending on what percent you are is what your pension is. Forman are 52.90 hr
     
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  21. BigMike

    BigMike Well-Known Member

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    Same for me. Distribution planning as a contractor. Working non-stop and as much OT as I can handle.
     
  22. hallett21

    hallett21 Well-Known Member

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    Been out of 952 for about 4 years so I’m clearly behind on the pay.


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  23. jones performance

    jones performance Well-Known Member

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    my brother is a lineman and makes dam good money. he has been with sce since he was 18, started as a meter reader then moved on to other indoor jobs. he started lineman apprenticeship but couldn't handle the pay cut from what he was making in planning and had to go back to planning. he finally got himself setup to where financially he could take the pay cut to resume his apprenticeship at 38 years old. he finished his apprenticeship and immediately moved up to a more specialized position. the stories about being an apprentice he would tell me were pretty tough, specially at his age, but the other journeyman and foreman figured out pretty quick that they weren't gonna deter my brother, and that as soon as he completed his apprenticeship that he could potentially be their boss, lol. he already had 20 years seniority when he started his apprenticeship.
     
  24. Rayson1971

    Rayson1971 Well-Known Member

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    Yeah I'm local 11. I worked at Los Robles out of 952 for a month and they were alot less sue to restructuring the pension
     
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  25. Bear Down

    Bear Down Well-Known Member

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    Truth...
    My brother went through the same thing.. He started with Edison at 25 and was Meter Reading for a while.. When his apprenticeship started, he just got divorced, so seeing his kids was a priority.. But with Edison, not doing O.T. was career suicide, so it was a tough few years for him. But man did my brother roll in some $$. He would tell me how he was paid and get paid to sleep depending on the Job and run of hours... He would tell me at times he would make 2 weeks worth of pay in a few days with the O.T. If I could do it all over again, I'd go into that field.
     
  26. TCHB

    TCHB Well-Known Member

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    A linemen is a journeymen position at SCE. These are all working guys in the IBEW who make around $50 an hour plus a ton of overtime. As others have said a electrician is also a journeymen position with the same pay. From my experience I would go into the electrical field and get hired by one of the utilities.
    1. Good pay
    2. Lots of promotion opportunities
    3. Good benefits
    Overall pretty good working conditions.
    If you want to go up the ladder to the directors level a BA degree will help greatly.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
  27. OldSchoolBoats

    OldSchoolBoats Howard 22 Offshore

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    Curious, because I always want to learn more about the trades.

    So, if I wanted to be an electrician, how do you go about doing that? I see advertisement for SJVC in Temecula all the time. They have a 10 month course or a 14 month A.S. Course.

    Is this where someone would start if they were interested in that particular trade??

    https://info.sjvc.edu/electrician/?...b3uN-t7NdBwpScpf3pUEfFsww4LYUJUsaAldcEALw_wcB
     
  28. hallett21

    hallett21 Well-Known Member

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    Easiest way is to contact the local union hall. Ask about when the next apprentice test/class is.

    In Ventura county 952. You had to put in an application. Then take an aptitude test that involved basic algebra, reading comprehension etc.

    Assuming you scored well you go in for an interview in front of the board. It’s made up of IBEW (labor) and NECA (contractor’s). If you score well on the interview they accept you into the 5 year program.

    School starts on a certain date (August-May for Ventura) and you attend 2 nights a week. The union is responsible for getting you a job with the local union contractors.

    I know that LA does class once a week for a month. That may have changed though.


    When I was an apprentice a few of us stayed with the same company the whole time. Where as some guys worked for 5-6 different companies. Those of us who stayed employed all understood the idea of working hard and making sure our companies knew we were an asset.

    The guys who worked for everyone seemed to just be there for the check.

    Edit: when you complete your apprenticeship you will test with state of CA and receive your Journeyman certification.

    That along with your union card allows you to work pretty much anywhere in the US.

    A lot of “electricians” do not carry any certification. Even if you left the union you would still be able to carry the status of being a certified electrician.






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    Last edited: Aug 15, 2019
  29. Spectra18

    Spectra18 Well-Known Member

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    What’s JW?
     
  30. waterboy

    waterboy PONTOON MEMBER

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    Sce lineman here, not a job for people that want to work 40 hours a week. It can be Friday afternoon getting ready for your weekend then car will hit a pole, bad xfmr, bad cable or whatever and there goes your plans, they can work you 24 hours, then 8 hour break and do 24 again.
     
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  31. Universal Elements

    Universal Elements Well-Known Member

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    Journeyman wage
     
  32. Rayson1971

    Rayson1971 Well-Known Member

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    It's actually journeyman wireman
     
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  33. Universal Elements

    Universal Elements Well-Known Member

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    My bad
     
  34. TCHB

    TCHB Well-Known Member

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    Yes lots of OT for all the operations people. Power plant people work between 500 and 1000 hours of OT just about every year.
     
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  35. Joe mama

    Joe mama Well-Known Member

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    No shit!!!!!
     
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  36. WYRD

    WYRD Well-Known Member

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    What you didn't get your lambo yet...I gave em out for Christmas bonuses last year
     
  37. Taboma

    Taboma Well-Known Member

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    I never got the damned watch either, lol :mad: :p
     
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  38. HB2Havasu

    HB2Havasu Well-Known Member

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    Good friend of mine has been doing this for years, and with overtime he’s making a killing! He probably doubles my income as an engineer, and that doesn’t include the CalPers Pension he will be receiving when he retires. My employer offers Jack Shit! Not even a vested 401k. :mad:

    If I were in my 30’s I would definitely go this route! It’s not an easy career though! You will spend many days working in 100F+ Temps and freezing cold wet winter nights. Oh and did I mention High Voltage? :eek:There’s a reason it pays well! It’s worth it in the end!!!
     
  39. caldezrat

    caldezrat Well-Known Member

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    Linemen go straight to doubletime for work over 40 hours a week. Sweet!
     
  40. 81Sprint

    81Sprint Well-Known Member

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    I've been in the IBEW local 357 (Electrical Union) for 24 years, i am at the top of scale and while i don't have a lambo i am not hurting by any means. With that being said, right now is a great time to get in the union, construction is going crazy. Have a few friends that are lineman, lots of work but you gotta chase it, Storms, hurricanes, etc were they are needed the most. I traveled when i was in my 20's for about 6 years and got it out of my system, to much partying on the road. Get in now, you wont regret it the retirement and health benefits are worth it alone.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019
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  41. Spectra18

    Spectra18 Well-Known Member

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    I got a steady job and a mortgage .... any suggestions. I looked up lineman school it’s Saturdays for I think 3 years. Doable.


     
  42. TCHB

    TCHB Well-Known Member

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    How about the travel time and meals.
     
  43. 81Sprint

    81Sprint Well-Known Member

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    I'm not a lineman, but here in Vegas, after 8 hours is time and a half up to 4 hours and then double. Sat and sunday all double. If you are on a good overtime job its not hard to gross over 20 grand a month.
     
  44. RiverDave

    RiverDave In it to win it

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    The work is electrifying but will ground you quickly if you make a mistake.

    That’s all folks, don’t forget to tip your waitress.

    RD
     
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  45. 81Sprint

    81Sprint Well-Known Member

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    im-the-electrician-im-here-to-remove-your-shorts-and-15166486.png
     
  46. RiverDave

    RiverDave In it to win it

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    Your employer sounds like my employer. Lol
     
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  47. Brobee

    Brobee Well-Known Member

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    Lineman here. I’ve been with the local utility here in San Diego for almost 15yrs. Started on the electric side 6 months after I was hired. We have an entry level position called line assistant which is comparable to a groundman. Once you start your apprenticeship it’s a 3 year deal I don’t know what the pay is now through the apprenticeship, but it goes up every 6 months as you progress through the steps and a lineman makes about $60 an hour straight time. On an extended day it’s 8 hours at straight time, 3 hours at time and a half, and everything else is double time. Any time you come in outside your normal schedule is double time.

    With most work being done from buckets nowadays, climbing is pretty rare. My knees are fine but now it’s shoulders that go. You spend a lot of time with your hands over your head and moving heavy loads.

    I love my job. I’m outside with my friends pretty much. The schedule can be jarring, but you get used to it. You just need to figure out a good work/life balance. My wife knows I’m not guaranteed to be coming home every night but if there’s something important I need to be there for then I make it happen. My company knows there is life outside of work.

    With the trouble PG&E is in and the complete revamp they have to do of their system, everyone is hurting for linemen. There are way more jobs than there are people to fill them. And even if you hire someone and train them it’s at a minimum 3 years before they’re qualified and probably 3 more before they’re worth a shit and you can trust them to not blow themselves up.

    Anyway, it’s a great job that pays very well. No college degree needed, no suit and ties. Hell my old foreman was regularly confused with being a homeless person. I highly recommend looking into it. If you have any questions, hit me up.



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  48. HOOTER SLED-

    HOOTER SLED- Supercharged MOTORBOAT!!!

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    Wtf???? This thread goes all day...and the God himself of all linemen highvoltagehands has not chimed in to tell us how great he is? Oh wait...he must be working or out there saving the world somewhere.....:D
     
  49. KingofBeers

    KingofBeers Well-Known Member

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    IBEW 617 for 19yrs. Made a pretty decent living. I know plenty of Outside Linesmen that do very well. Inside Wiremen snd Outside Linesmen are two different creatures..lol. The last ~10 yrs or so have been insanely busy in the SF Bay Area with seemingly limitless bankroll to be made. Owners of projects want things yesterday and will pay big fat premiums to have it. Im no fan of the Union politics, but just know that even in the Union world valuable people will be paid over scale. Its that free market thing working even though the Libtard Union shitbags that just want to get paid to show up and think everybody should be paid the same no matter what. 20180314_151753.jpg
     
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  50. crzy2bealive

    crzy2bealive Well-Known Member

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    Wish I didn't have a fear of heights I would have tried.

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