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Best Plumbing Job

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  • Best Plumbing Job

    What is the best plumbing project you ever worked on?

    the dog
    the dog

  • #2
    Hmm, Thats a hard one.

    There are so many ways to determine best. Most interesting, or best conditions, or with the prettiest and most friendly clients and so on.

    This is a professional, family oriented site so I will stay with the most interesting for now.

    Over the last several years I have done a lot of work in industrial and petrol chemical plants. The process of putting pipes together to build plumbing systems lost a lot of its challenge years ago. However working in these large industrial settings have given me the opportunity to learn new and different processes not totally relating to plumbing. The most interesting job I've done recently would have to be the repipe and relining of a nine story coke furnace that was built nearly 80 years ago. From the welded hydrogen lines (I was not a welder) to the durnham cooling systems for the twiers, this job was both challenging and interesting. Filthy and dangerous as it could be but I enjoyed every minute of it.

    Even rebuilding an ancient pollution control system 100 feet off the ground in 20 degree high wind was interesting and could almost have been called fun. Much more interesting than setting a battery of fixtures or roughing in a toilet room.

    Right now I am doing an assisted living center, the generals superintendent is what would be called a "workers boss". We BBQ once a week, have air conditioned breakrooms, a concrete parking lot even before the underground was begun, excellent communication and commadrie amoungst the trades and a very strong level of trust between everyone there. So this is one of the best "conditions" jobs I have seen for a while. We even go out for a hearty breakfast once a week during break, with contractor knowlege and approval. We are nearly 30 days ahead of schedule.

    After re reading this post it looks like I am bragging. I guess I have had good fortune to be able to do a lot of various things in the industry. But there have been nightmares as well. I described one of them recently on another thread.
    Work hard, Play hard, Sleep easy.


    • #3
      I, too, got tired of standard plumbing jobs. How many toilet rooms can you rough-in? I had the advantage of moving more into pipe-fitting. I enjoyed that for a few years, but became bored as well.

      Working in supervision has kept my interest. Almost never a dull day.

      My two favorite jobs were:

      ...A factory building in the LA area. It was close to home, I had plumbers, fitters, and welders on my crew, and we installed a tremendous amount of pipe in that building. In my opinion it was the greatest project I ever supervised.

      ...A small job for the Coast Guard. We only had the contract for pipe-fitting, which wasn't much. But, it was on Terminal Island, off San Pedro. remember working in a mechanical room with large double doors which opened to the LA harbor. It was so relaxing to watch large ships pass 100 feet away as you worked. A gentle sea-breeze cooled the air to perfect.

      Your last project seems like a dream. Most of them don't seem that way anymore, do they Plumber. Are the jobs getting worse, or are we getting older?

      the dog
      the dog


      • #4

        Yeah this last job has been great, I am probably spoiled right now. It goes to show that treating workers with respect and dignity gets far more quality production than all the scare tactics and intimidation methods combined. I'm trying to take away the methods and techniques of the superintendent to apply to jobs I do in the future.

        Like you said, we are getting older and the times they are a changing (or was that Bob Dylan). It seems like everyone needs to prove they are THE alpha male and wants to shove their authority around to show how important they are. I am so glad I am in the last half of my career. These younger guys have a tough row to hoe.

        That job with the Coast Guard sounds like it was really nice. It might be fun to be a ship fitter for awhile. Not too many opportunities like that amoungst the cornfields and smokestacks.

        There are some very large power plant and refinery jobs about to be done around here. One is a brand new large scale coal burning generation station (Its called the Praire State Energy Complex)and the other is a major expansion of an oil refinery (The refinery has changed hands so many times I am not even sure who owns it right now). Both of these are billion plus jobs and would be very interesting projects plus it would be quite a feather in the cap to whoever gets assigned one of them. These will be mostly fitters though so I will have to get really lucky. I might settle on a crew forman job just to get in. Might even settle on a journeymans slot just to check out the jobs for a couple of months. I can always drag up and do something else.
        Work hard, Play hard, Sleep easy.


        • #5

          As I've stated before, I have a college education and a trade. I will take my trade any day of the week, because of one thing you said: "I can always drag-up."

          The world will always need plumbers, so we can always move and find another job. You live in Indiana, but you could be a plumber in California tomarrow if you wanted to.

          That's what I like about construction. Some projects you like, some you don't, but you keep moving to the next one. Every one is an adventure.

          Like the Bob Dylan reference. I'm a hugh fan of his.

          the dog
          the dog