New York Firearms Forum banner
1 - 20 of 42 Posts

· Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My current occupation (TIG welding) is ruining my hand.

The grip strength in my good hand is 165lbs and my "broken" hand can only muster 80lbs. And after seeing many a specialist, and getting as many opinions as I can, the consensus is that surgery is not a good option for me and the only real solution to my problem is to not do my job anymore because the fast, repetitive motions are wrecking havoc in my hand.

Great. Now what?

Welding is sort of a boom or bust industry outside the shops. Either there is a lot of work, or there is none and you pack up and move.

Now I want to do something that is always in demand everywhere, instead of being so specialized that job opportunities are limited.

In the future I foresee a "thinning of the administrative herd" so to speak, where business realizes they don't need 50 compliance officers, buyers, engineers, etc, etc. Most of those people don't have much to offer outside of their self-perpetuating paperwork.

And when it comes to pass that only the actual job matters, they will be out of work while "Bob" down on the floor is still building widgets, minus the stack of paperwork.

Everyone needs doctors, nurses, grave diggers, dentists. What else?

I keep coming back to the medical field. Good pay, great job satisfaction in helping people, in demand virtually everywhere there are people.

But what is bad about the medical field?

Talked to my parents about all this, and they are like, "well, we are retiring and have some money, go to med school and be a doctor. We will help."

WHAT???

I'm 33. How long does undergrad, med school, residency take? Ten years? Worth it?

I was thinking something more like nursing, maybe a physicians assistant. My primary care doc is an RPA.

Talk me out of this, or encourage me, or share any random tidbits you have.

I don't have any kids to support, just an unemployed GF. lol

What should I do? What would you do?
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,751 Posts
stay in a skilled trade ...law students can not get a job, one was offered in NY for $10k ... what ..?? after $200k for School ...??-- Doctors.. most I know are looking to close their practice, and associate with a Hospital due to O'BummerCare
 

· Registered
Joined
·
1,239 Posts
I know the feeling I do allot of mig welding and fabricating at my work and I get the tingling hands and trigger finger often.
It sucks and at 35 and going through a divorce and running a household by myself,schooling is hardly an option for me.
I hope you can find something you enjoy doing that is easier on your body.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
808 Posts
In the short term, take frequent breaks with your weak hand and stretch it out. I would also look into some sort of rehabilitation of your weak hand in the form of some sort of strength training. I would also practice doing your trade with your strong hand. If you can do at least some of the work with your strong hand, it'll help your weak hand last longer. Get a 2nd, 3rd, and 4th opinion from different Doctors on your hand. See if what they all say lines up or not.

As to the Medical field, it is TOUGH learning it! I was a EMT-B for almost 5 years, and the three months of training for that alone was very difficult IMHO. Nursing pays very good, but also has a high 'burn out rate'. Going into the field would require a lot of dedication on your part as it is what I like to call 'hard learning'. If you had a hard time in the past in classes, I would not recommend attempting the medical field. It is HARD!
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,187 Posts
Nursing is a great field for stable work and the ability to obtain work anywhere you go, in fact Ive known several nurses who were traveling nurses and loved what they did. The downside to it, you will be continually covered in various bodily fluids and substances, patients are generally a pain in the ass and I know for myself the good feeling at the end of the day knowing that I had helped others didnt last as long. I spent a decade not as a nurse, but doing all the work of a nurse under a licensed nurse, theres a reason I dont do it anymore and dont have a single regret about not doing it anymore.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I TIG weld thick aluminum, using both hands. One to manipulate the torch, the other to feed in 3' lengths of wire as fast as I can.

3 FEET of 1/8" aluminum wire only makes a 3 INCH weld with 3/4" thick aluminum plates. That means I'm feeding hundreds of feet of wire through my hand in a given day.

I go to physical therapy for my hand three times a week now. Therapists think we can get my hand back into usable shape, but how long it lasts is THE question.

My employeer is really very good about these sort of things and I will probably be allowed to do light duty for a time but I know for sure it will limit my earning potential long term, and I don't want to be on the short list when it's time for cut backs either.

So while I'm still functional I'd like to start working moving into something else. My workplace also offers tuition reimbursement, up to $20k/year, so I'd love to take advantage of that too. Have to be able to work thou!

...

Not concerned about school being "too hard." Just have to get the brain in gear for that stuff again.

Thank you for all the input so far, that's just what I need.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
337 Posts
Don't tell any prospective employer about your hand. Just say you want a change of venue. Go to your local community college and start school english math language biology chemistry… There are skilled/specialist jobs out there that dont get discussed large scale. Medical technology encompasses a dozen different jobs maybe more. You're still relativly young and no dependants. (an unemployed GF doesn't count). You are free to go to school and relocate as necessary. Good luck.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
8,394 Posts
I should have listened to my mother and been a Viking.

 

· Banned
Joined
·
5,971 Posts
Honestly, med school is not the way to go, 4 years of premed, 4 years of med school, 4-8 years of residency and $500,000 in debt, you'll be close to 50 by the time your done. If you have awesome grades, you could do pharmacy, that is a PHD program now and you will start at $125,000/year or more, but its a 6 year program including summers. Nursing is a pretty good gig, but yo have to deal with women all day. I've been a nurse for 15 years, pm me if you want.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,871 Posts
Just a thought - I bet that with a couple months of practice, you could learn to perform your existing profession with your non-"broken" hand. Not trying to discourage you from pursuing something else.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
85 Posts
MCNM

hpw about a certified weld inspector... You should know what a good weld looks like...i believe there is not alot of schooling, u have the welding background... at my work PIPEFITTER we are always dealing with weld inspectors...
 

· Registered
Joined
·
267 Posts
Doctors/nurses need good appendages as well. Look at the tasks that are demanded of them on a daily basis and they are at least right there with your current position.

I think others have a very good idea of welding instruction. There aren't a ton of those out there. You said you were not tied down....get the hell out of NY....own the firearms you want and get a job that fits. You may need some courses but if you find a vocational type atmosphere they are more career and experience based than teacher type. Good luck.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
982 Posts
Invent a tool / apparatus / thing / whatever that will either assist your 'broken' hand or prevent this from happening. You obviously know how to do the job. How could you do the job without ruining your body. If this is a problem that every tig welder will eventually have, then there is a need for another way. Fill that need. . . ???. . .Profit. . . retire and buy guns.
 

· Registered
Joined
·
2,751 Posts
Invent a tool / apparatus / thing / whatever that will either assist your 'broken' hand or prevent this from happening. You obviously know how to do the job. How could you do the job without ruining your body. If this is a problem that every tig welder will eventually have, then there is a need for another way. Fill that need. . . ???. . .Profit. . . retire and buy guns.
they have these ... it's called " robotic welding ', which may not fit a small job shop
 
1 - 20 of 42 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top