Is Drywall A Good Career?

 
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Old 10-16-2017, 10:33 AM   #21
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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Lel. Well not sure if it's different in Canada. It's a fully recognized trade by the name of "interior systems mechanic" or "lather".
Where are you located?

Around here its not given the epitome of respect.
Yeah all I hear about drywallers are bad things. Saying how it's a skilless trade and for dumb people which is kind of discouraging. I live in Manitoba
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Old 10-16-2017, 10:36 AM   #22
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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My advice would be to finish your apprenticeship.. even if you only want to finish drywall (Is it just me or would that not get a bit boring after a few years?) then yeah focus on being good at that.. but having a ticket and having a higher skill level- steel stud framing, T-bar, doors, whatever else, as well as mudding- .. will get you hired faster, for more money, and with more responsibility. Have you tried framing, or ceiling installs? doors? I'd rather do that than drywall finishing personally, although that said nothing wrong with mudding, and I have always had a lot of respect for those I've worked with who could do a meticulous clean job, I learned a lot and improved my mudding a lot from them.

For all we know as well- If construction techniques change, new construction may not involve drywall tapers. Not tomorrow, but at some point, and you sound like you are young and just getting into it.

At least get your ticket. If you love finishing, then start your own business and earn a reputation as someone who does high end finishing work.
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Yeah ive done layouts, steel studs, door frames and ceilings.

I just hear that taping takes years of practice to actually get good and fast at so if that is something I want to do I'd prefer to start practicing asap. I guess I just don't want to be in that position where I spend the next 4 years and get my ticket to realize I wanted something else.
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Old 10-16-2017, 12:43 PM   #23
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


Yeah it would probably take a couple/few years of doing it full time, to get really good and fast at it. I've done a bunch of it over the years, doing renovations-enough to be able to do nice clean work. Although I would probably be slow as hell at it compared to a pro who does it day in and day out.


As I said, nothing wrong with taping. Personally I would complete the apprenticeship and get the red seal, then focus on taping. More skills and abilities, more education and training on a resume. Especially if you have an employer who will pay for it? you also collect a bunch of grants from the Gov't when going through the program.

I did an apprenticeship, have my red seal in carpentry and it has been well worth it. I guess what I am trying to say is get as much as you can under your belt while you are younger.. it would suck to limit yourself in the future.. There may come a time when you really don't want to finish drywall anymore. I would also advise you to take some courses in business and accounting, if you wish to be self employed.

Sounds like you have your mind made up about it though.. good luck with whatever you choose..
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Old 10-16-2017, 01:20 PM   #24
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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Yeah it would probably take a couple/few years of doing it full time, to get really good and fast at it. I've done a bunch of it over the years, doing renovations-enough to be able to do nice clean work. Although I would probably be slow as hell at it compared to a pro who does it day in and day out.


As I said, nothing wrong with taping. Personally I would complete the apprenticeship and get the red seal, then focus on taping. More skills and abilities, more education and training on a resume. Especially if you have an employer who will pay for it? you also collect a bunch of grants from the Gov't when going through the program.

I did an apprenticeship, have my red seal in carpentry and it has been well worth it. I guess what I am trying to say is get as much as you can under your belt while you are younger.. it would suck to limit yourself in the future.. There may come a time when you really don't want to finish drywall anymore. I would also advise you to take some courses in business and accounting, if you wish to be self employed.

Sounds like you have your mind made up about it though.. good luck with whatever you choose..
I guess I just have it in my head that I'm late to the game starting an apprenticeship at 24. Sometimes I wish I could see into the future 5 years and see what happens with each decision haha.

My mind isn't completely made up yet, your points make a lot of logical sense, it's exactly what I'd do for sure if I was still 18. Finish the 4 year apprenticeship then work on becoming a talented taper. At the end of the day I just want to be able to look at my life and be proud of what I achieved, growing up with a very hard family kind of threw me through a loop of lack of confidence and self respect and I'm on my own journey to build it back up for myself.
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Old 10-16-2017, 01:32 PM   #25
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


What you may want to do, to keep options open- Find a self employed taper who will give you work on Saturdays. Get a taste of finishing drywall, while you do the apprenticeship. Once you get to a certain point, you can start doing your own gig on the side, and decide exactly what you want to do everyday.

Also-3 or 4 years goes really quick. I wouldn't worry too much about spending time doing the schooling, at your age..

It also really depends on if you want to work for yourself, or have an employer. There are benefits to both. If you want to work for someone else, having the ticket means you will be able to get into better positions- union or otherwise- the type of jobs that have benefits, dental, RRSP matching, etc. Probably better pay starting out than without it.

Some residential drywallers doing contract work do make good money, but they hustle. Others struggle check to check.. no guarantees when you work for yourself, you have to make it happen, and figure out how to make it happen.
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Old 10-16-2017, 01:42 PM   #26
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


Nobody goes to school for drywall here.. Unless you are in the union.
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Old 10-16-2017, 01:54 PM   #27
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


Sounds like the "interior Systems" is more than drywalling..

also includes steel stud framing, layout, suspended ceiling, doors, door hardware.. sounds more like commercial carpenter training..
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Old 10-16-2017, 03:08 PM   #28
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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Sounds like the "interior Systems" is more than drywalling..

also includes steel stud framing, layout, suspended ceiling, doors, door hardware.. sounds more like commercial carpenter training..
I guess now that I think about it it's
basically carpentry but with steel and drywall. Journeyman rate is 31$ i believe, other names are "lather"!
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Old 10-16-2017, 04:30 PM   #29
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


For 31 bucks an hr. I say go for it
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Old 10-16-2017, 05:23 PM   #30
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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For 31 bucks an hr. I say go for it
I guess it's not a bad earning. Still would like to hit those 40$+ like some trades ;(. I guess theres always side jobs if I feel like it.
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Old 10-16-2017, 05:49 PM   #31
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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For 31 bucks an hr. I say go for it

That's $31 Canadian. About $24 US. Still not bad for a 24 yo. So I'd guess that's about $12 USD/hr after Canadian taxes.
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Old 10-16-2017, 06:01 PM   #32
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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For 31 bucks an hr. I say go for it

That's $31 Canadian. About $24 US. Still not bad for a 24 yo. So I'd guess that's about $12 USD/hr after Canadian taxes.
;(. Just want to hit that 6 figure holy grail one day. Who do I have to sell my soul to?

Funny thing is I graduated for welding but never found work for it. Seems like the entry work pays even less to the point of why would you do that work instead of working at Mcdonalds. Really fun and engaging trade though!
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Old 10-16-2017, 07:44 PM   #33
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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I guess I just have it in my head that I'm late to the game starting an apprenticeship at 24.
No offense man, but really? You have a good 40 years of work in front of you, and these days it's rare for anyone to keep doing the same thing for anywhere near that long.

At your age, I was a machinist. Spent a couple of years as a mainframe computer programmer after that (took classes for it), then the better part of three decades as an electronics tech (took LOTS of classes for that), doing TV repair, two-way radio, fax machines and other stuff. I started at the bottom in remodeling/construction at age 54, worked for a GC for about five years and then went on my own.

Now I'm 67 and trying to be semi-retired. It ain't working. Old clients and new referrals keep calling, and I just don't seem to be able to say no.

No, I've never hit a six-figure income, nor have I particularly wanted to. But I'm comfortable, and I haven't stopped learning. Heck, I still don't know what I want to do for a living.
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Old 10-16-2017, 07:50 PM   #34
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


I've been in the drywall trade through most of my carpenter career about 25 years, I don't care for resedental hanging cause all you do is hang, I done it for a few years, a lot harder on your body to,then I got into commerical, when you're a commercial drywaller you frame interior, exterior steel studs, elevator shaft walls, frame sofits set door jambs and do drop ceilings, I'm 47 and the last few years I just frame not a lot of hanging
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Old 10-16-2017, 09:12 PM   #35
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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;(. Just want to hit that 6 figure holy grail one day. Who do I have to sell my soul to?

Funny thing is I graduated for welding but never found work for it. Seems like the entry work pays even less to the point of why would you do that work instead of working at Mcdonalds. Really fun and engaging trade though!

You're 24. Inflation alone will eventually get you to six figures Canadian. Even at McDonald's
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Old 10-16-2017, 11:39 PM   #36
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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Around here its not given the epitome of respect.
Here neither, there was a time some years back a drywall contractor advertised $0.70 @ sq ft...finished....I'm hoping for his sake that did not include material....even still less than a dollar a sq ft? There's way easier ways to make money.

Pound for pound Painters and Gutter hangers get more respect in the payday dept
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Old 10-18-2017, 01:01 PM   #37
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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Around here its not given the epitome of respect.
Here neither, there was a time some years back a drywall contractor advertised $0.70 @ sq ft...finished....I'm hoping for his sake that did not include material....even still less than a dollar a sq ft? There's way easier ways to make money.

Pound for pound Painters and Gutter hangers get more respect in the payday dept
That's pretty depressing :/. It honestly seems like drywallers are putting in so much work for such little pay. On the big job sites the foreman is pretty much in charge of the whole worksite once the structural steel is up, yet apparently the drywall foreman doesn't even have a pay raise.
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Old 10-18-2017, 01:22 PM   #38
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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Here neither, there was a time some years back a drywall contractor advertised $0.70 @ sq ft...finished....I'm hoping for his sake that did not include material....even still less than a dollar a sq ft? There's way easier ways to make money.

Pound for pound Painters and Gutter hangers get more respect in the payday dept
If that's $0.40 for finishing that's $4000 for 10,000 square feet. My guy can do that in a 6 day week easy. As mentioned before; hangers make less than finishers. Keep busy and have 1 helper and you're doing really good.
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Old 10-18-2017, 11:19 PM   #39
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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Here neither, there was a time some years back a drywall contractor advertised $0.70 @ sq ft...finished....I'm hoping for his sake that did not include material....even still less than a dollar a sq ft? There's way easier ways to make money.

Pound for pound Painters and Gutter hangers get more respect in the payday dept
If that's $0.40 for finishing that's $4000 for 10,000 square feet. My guy can do that in a 6 day week easy. As mentioned before; hangers make less than finishers. Keep busy and have 1 helper and you're doing really good.
I think one advantage of being the actual drywaller is that you learn the whole trade inside out and run the jobs. Maybe if you get lucky you can pick up a project manager job down the road. Many things to consider... there's a younger guy in my company who's been with them since he was 18, they put him through school for the 4 years then put him through college classes for engineering and now he's a PM with a company truck and everything. Kind of jealous of the guy haha.
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Old 10-21-2017, 06:53 AM   #40
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Re: Is Drywall A Good Career?


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I guess I just have it in my head that I'm late to the game starting an apprenticeship at 24. Sometimes I wish I could see into the future 5 years and see what happens with each decision haha.

My mind isn't completely made up yet, your points make a lot of logical sense, it's exactly what I'd do for sure if I was still 18. Finish the 4 year apprenticeship then work on becoming a talented taper. At the end of the day I just want to be able to look at my life and be proud of what I achieved, growing up with a very hard family kind of threw me through a loop of lack of confidence and self respect and I'm on my own journey to build it back up for myself.
Its crazy to me that you guys have a four year apprenticeship to learn how to hang drywall.

My thoughts, your body is gonna hurt real bad in due time with hanging as a career choice. There are a few who can hold up to it, but most can not. You have to look at your build and answer that for yourself.

Mystery breeds margin. Meaning the more mysterious a trade is to people the more you can charge/get paid for it. IMO, not much mystery to hanging.

My demographic is probably different than you. Around here ALL the hangers are hispanic. Most are here illegally. They work for extremely low wages. Makes it nearly impossible to compete, which is why they pretty much have the hanging and finishing market cornered around here.

On the flip side of the coin, if you learned the craft, started your own business, and learned to manage employees that could be a potentially decent living.

I'm a self employed 29 year old trim carpentry sub. If a friend of mine asked me your original question I'd say NO. RUN.

Also worth mentioning, choose a trade that can easily roll into other careers. If you spend 5 years doing it, and decide you don't like it, you don't want to be back at square one.

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