What does a metal fabricator do?

Your daily duties as a metal fabricator are highly specific to your particular industry, and the role you occupy. Your specialisation within this industry will determine your working environment, your pay, the skills you require and also your tasks. Some of the more general tasks involve: reading job plans, practising one of the various processes to manipulate metal, joining parts together for assembly and providing any protective or cosmetic coatings once the assembly is finished. 

Tasks:

  • Cut and mould metal to plan
  • Assemble metal pieces by various joining techniques
  • Apply protective and cosmetic coats to metal
  • Read detailed plans

What skills do I need to be a metal fabricator?

Being a metal worker is both a challenging and fulfilling career. It requires rational thinking and the ability to withstand the physical demands of the job. Being a metal worker requires the application of your skills in demanding work environments, whether it be on ships, in factories and on construction sites. Being a metal fabricator also requires an in-depth understanding of health and safety, as the inherent risks in working with metal and machinery need operators to remain alert.

Skills/attributes
  • Keen eye for health and safety hazards
  • Ability to work well with your hands
  • Able to practice your skill set in different environments
  • Comfortable working at heights
  • Available to travel for work

Specialisations

There are a number of different career paths for a metal fabricator. Deciding on your preferred specialisation will help determine the education and experience you’ll need, your working environment and even your rate of pay. Your chosen specialisation can be based on what works for you!

Light fabrication

Light fabrication is a form of sheet metal work. This process involves the manufacturing of various products made with sheet metal. This sheet metal will often need to undergo several processes such as cutting, heating, moulding, joining and assembling before it can be used for the desired purpose.

Welder

Welders employ the use of various joining techniques to attach pieces of metal of all shapes and sizes to one another. The purpose may be to assemble materials for the manufacturing of a product, for repairs or for risk prevention. This particular skill set is required across a wide range of industries, from car manufacturing to ship repairs and general maintenance.

Moulder

Moulders specialise in making moulds that are used for the creation of metal parts. The metal materials are cast within the mould, which will allow the metal to take on the shape and size required. The moulding process requires the operation of specialist machinery.

Study pathways for metal fabricators

There are courses available to help you get a head start in your career as a metal fabricator

Getting Started

Choose from courses will provide you with the knowledge and skills you require

Skill Building

Learn manufacturing industry relevant skills with targeted study

Professional Development

Hone your skills and prepare to enter the workplace

Industry Recognition

Completing an apprenticeship once you’ve completed your studies is highly recommended. Working at heights or on construction sites also requires licensing.

Getting a job after graduation

Put your training to good use and get the best professional head start in your manufacturing career. Emphasise your personal strengths and achievements in your resume and target your cover letter to the job description listed.

Job Prospects and Salaries

There is expected to be moderate growth in employment over the next five years with an above average level of job openings available. Australia’s continually booming mining industry may provide further job prospects.