/ Rope access engineering?

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robaj - on 05 Dec 2012
So...I graduated this summer with a degree in Mechanical Engineering and have now been working for 6 months for a small firm in an office environment.

It's a good job and I'm so thankful for having found work so quickly, but in the long term I'm gonna have to get out and about more as part of my job if I'm ever going to enjoy it. Being in an office 40 hours a week isn't my dream.

I've always been intrigued by the idea of rope access work as I think it would be a lot of fun and it seems to pay pretty well! I reckon the time would fly in comparison to my current job.

However, ideally I would use my degree (as opposed to cleaning windows etc) as the pay would clearly be better and I think I'd find it more stimulating.

My question is...are there many rope access jobs out there for Mechanical Engineers? It would be good to hear from anyone with knowledge of the sector.

Thanks in advance :)
rlines - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to robaj: Have you thought of NDT?
robaj - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to rlines:

Excuse mu ignorance, but what's NDT?
robaj - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to robaj:

*my
Frank4short - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to robaj: You probably should have covered this in uni if you're a recently qualified mech eng. though to enlighten you it stands for Non Destructive Testing. e.g. x-raying welds and that sort of thing.
robaj - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to robaj:

OK, so I read the wiki page! Have you worked in NDT or do you? How is/was it?
robaj - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to Frank4short:

Yeah, probably did! There's too many three letter acronyms in life :/
davo77 - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to robaj:
Hi mate
Just saw this & thought i would drop you a line.
NDT Non destructive testing is widely used on any metals as used in the industry.
Weather it be bridges, cruise ships or oil riggs "the favoured job!"
this can be Visual inspection 795, Liquid Penatrant inspection 495, Magnetic partical inspection 795, Ultrosonic 985 & Radiographic inspection/testing 950.

IRATA Level 1 (850) can carry out NDT only under the supervision of a level 3.
Between level 1 & 2 you must acummalate 1000 working hours.

iv done the level 1 & slowly working my way to level 2 then to my level 3.

If you fancy it go for it, theres lots of potential work out there, on & off shore.
Try www.riggaccess.co.uk sign up give your details & use there classifieds to find LOADS of jobs that come up.
Or www.riggzone.com
Bearing that in mind, not only do you have to be quilified in IRATA level 1, you need to be fully quilified in all areas of NDT, confined space quilified & if working off shore you need your BOSSIAT Basic Offshore Safety Induction and Emergency Training with HUET (helicopter underwater escape training) and EBS (emergency breathing systems)
Alot to take in & very expensive but well worth it.
If you can get a firm/company to employ you & pay for training even better, iv got a few contacts.
I will pass em on if you dont get any luck on those sites.

good luck buddy


robaj - on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to davo77:

Cheers Davo. You've saved me a lot of research time there. I'll let you know how I get on...best start saving for those tickets I guess!

Good luck with yours :)
itsThere on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to davo77: what about for a electrical and electronic eng, bit of a long shot but i am also interested in rope access.
abzmed on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to robaj:

as well as the above, Muppetfilter on these forums may well be able to give some additional pointers.
RAT Companies include CAN Offshore, OUI, PD&MS and Access Unlimited to name a few.
davy_boy - on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to robaj: theres not much call for engineers on the rope access in fact iv never seen one the inspection side of things is the closest thing but to be honest unless you have some sort of a background in the industry itwill be a gamble getting inspection tickets and expecting to get a job straight away as the main thing companys want is experience. i would stick to the engineering jobs better money and rope access is not as glamarous as people like to think its usualy freezing cold, wet and hard graft.
itsThere on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to itsThere: i didnt think there would be a cross over, but always wondered about it.
muppetfilter - on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to davo77: Hi Davo, you are a bit out there with your prices and some of the info...

Irata L1 550-650 and dont buy equipment before you have a job that requires it.

PCN L2 NDT Tickets are what you would need to get work and they cost a lot more than you quoted from reputable schools like Talon, Lavenders or Ruanes.You dont need all disciplines as you state , usually UT and MPI are the bread and butter qualifications.
No company will pay you to train or will pay for qualifications.

Robaj ..YHM
muppetfilter - on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to robaj: PM me for info about graduate schemes and jobs that you probably didnt even know existed.
David Reid - on 06 Dec 2012
In reply to davy_boy:

I once witnessed an engineer who came from the office to inspect the job we were doing ( basically play rope dope for the day) and he slipped, grabbed his shunt and burn his hand nearly to the bone, forget the degree if you want to do rope access you will have to start at the bottom and work your way up like the rest of the guys
krikoman - on 07 Dec 2012
In reply to David Reid:
> (In reply to davy_boy)
>
> start at the bottom and work your way up like the rest of the guys

I thought they started at the top and lowered themselves down.
muppetfilter - on 07 Dec 2012
In reply to David Reid:
forget the degree if you want to do rope access you will have to start at the bottom and work your way up like the rest of the guys

This simply isn't true... If you know the industry it is quite possible with the right courses to walk straight into a technical job especially at a busy time of year.
robaj - on 07 Dec 2012
In reply to everyone:

Thanks for all the replies. A lot to think about!
robaj - on 07 Dec 2012
In reply to muppetfilter:

Thanks for the advice and info. Unfortunately I can't see your email...I've checked both my accounts. I may have used my uni email to set up my UKC account and it's been deleted now. I also had the "don't allow anyone to send me emails" box ticked on my UKC account!

Not sure how to check which email I have registered. I hope you still have the message in your sent items :)

You can get me at rob_jameson@rocketmail.com

Thanks again mate, I really appreciate the help!

Rob
robaj - on 07 Dec 2012
In reply to krikoman:

lol
davo77 - on 08 Dec 2012
In reply to muppetfilter:

I could be wrong on the IRATA as its been a while since idid mine but i know from mates who are in the trade the prices have gone up as there is more interest in rope access.

The prices for training are pretty much accurate budy.

You are right dnt buy kit before you do coarse as alot of firms provide gear unless your self employed ie window cleaning etc... where you supply own kit.

I personally didnt struggle getting work, isent thousands of emails a rang hundreds of firms before i got my foot in the door, im a chippy by trdae so had to work my way up.

Mate of mine works out on Everest rigg & afew others out off the coast of norfolk.
He's a level 3 overseeing two sparkies on a 2 week on 2 week off shift cycle.

He's worked up from Bank clerk, to steeple jack then he trained up in Sheffield teaching lads rope access, now he's level 3.

Its easy if you have contacts or know your stuff.
thanks for feed back dude
davo77 - on 08 Dec 2012
In reply to davo77:

P.s you do need all your training and safety tickets plus evac training from heli dec & copters & also need a trade! All very well being able to swing off a rope but you need a trade to work
ads.ukclimbing.com
thebrookster on 09 Dec 2012
Don't panic overly much on the rope side, could be quite nice if you can get it but certainly not necessary for a job.

The off-shore industry is crying out for qualified engineers right now, and many companies will happily ignore your lack of safety certificates if you have the main qualifications. Look at it from their perspective, if they are going to take an engineer on (I was recently offered a position at 40k a year minimum, with no "non-training" experience and only an HND!!) then a couple of grand for the relevant safety courses is a drop in the ocean!!

You do need to find many of these companies though, many may only advertise through their own site, if that even! You must be happy to travel at short notice though, many off-shore jobs involve flying around Europe at short notice. Incidentally, if Hydraulics are your thing, Enermech are expanding at the moment (enermech.co.uk).

Or, if you prefer engines etc, look try looking at the guys who build ships engines such as MAN B&W, Wartsila etc. You would be nearly at the cutting edge of technology there (camshaftless engines, very high efficiency, very strict emissions coming in, multi-fuel capability [The really new engines can run on heavy fuel oil, Diesel/Gas oil, and LNG boil-of gas so as to compete with steam]).

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