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Old 05-30-2018, 11:47 PM   #11
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Old 05-31-2018, 03:14 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by OpenSights View Post
Here there is no “helper” unless it’s a subcontractor. If you work directly for a Master you have to be an apprentice.
The title of apprentice is only given by unions right?

Thanks.
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Old 05-31-2018, 08:40 AM   #13
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I’m an apprentice. At least in Michigan only the State can give you an apprentice card.
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Old 05-31-2018, 10:46 AM   #14
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You can register as an ape for a non union shop. You need to find out how it works in your area. We need to have a master sign for our time we worked under his or her license. X number hours worked under a master and then take the test. It is the responsibility of the ape to get the affidavit and make sure it gets signed by master at the company where you are working.
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Old 05-31-2018, 03:02 PM   #15
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You can register as an ape for a non union shop. You need to find out how it works in your area. We need to have a master sign for our time we worked under his or her license. X number hours worked under a master and then take the test. It is the responsibility of the ape to get the affidavit and make sure it gets signed by master at the company where you are working.
Yeah that sounds like what happens in Washington. I've read from another source that plumbing outfits are sometimes reluctant to offer these supervised hours because you can only have so many "apes" or trainees working under a journeyman/ master plumber.

Seems a lot less official than an apprenticeship in a union. It also seems non-transferrable in the sense that if you are fired from working under a J/M level you don't have the title of apprentice, just your supervised hours.

Is the term ape used to denote their status on the food chain or an acronym?
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Old 06-01-2018, 08:29 AM   #16
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Acronym, heck of a lot easier than saying apprentice all the time. Once you are a registered apprentice you keep that status no matter if you are let go or not. If you do leave a company you need to get that master to sign for the time you worked at that shop. When you have enough hours worked under a master you can take your test.

I have worked both union and non and yes it is easier to be an ape in the union than out. That was my experience some people may have had it better.
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Old 06-01-2018, 12:01 PM   #17
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Yeah that sounds like what happens in Washington. I've read from another source that plumbing outfits are sometimes reluctant to offer these supervised hours because you can only have so many "apes" or trainees working under a journeyman/ master plumber.

Seems a lot less official than an apprenticeship in a union. It also seems non-transferrable in the sense that if you are fired from working under a J/M level you don't have the title of apprentice, just your supervised hours.

Is the term ape used to denote their status on the food chain or an acronym?
The way it worked in Oregon:

You sign up through the training agency to be an apprentice. Once they approve you, you are an apprentice until you are kicked out of the program for something severe, or you revoke your own status at will.

They put you on a ranked list based on a lot of things having to do with education and experience.

Shops belonging to the training agency who are looking for apprentices call the training agency and request an apprentice. The training agency gives them contact information based on your number on the list, and if you are on top you go to work.

If you get laid off or fired in THEORY your name would automatically go to the top of the list since you are an out of work apprentice now.

The downside of being out of work and in the program was that they still required you to attend school. I'm sure glad that didn't happen to me because a 3.5 hour drive each way to the school site would have put me in the poor house if I wasn't working.

Yes, there is a restriction on the number of apprentices in a shop, because they have to be supervised to a certain extent. Once you have passed that threshold you are allowed to do some kinds of work on your own, but they still have to be a phone call away if you need help. That ratio, as you mentioned is determined by the number of journeymen in the shop.

All in all, my experience as an apprentice through the state (non union) was a good one. I really have no complaints.
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Old 06-01-2018, 06:39 PM   #18
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Not sure if this will be seen, just want to thank everyone for the advice and input. It has been super helpful. Sort of leaning to the non-union route due to the fact that I don't see myself wanting to work in a union and am more interested in the residential service side of the trade.

I have zero experience in the trade (other than replacing and fixing a couple toilets in my parent's house), but am eager to work. Sending my resume out to different companies has been unsuccessful thus far- even to ones that are looking for apprentices (usually with experience though).

It was recommended by someone online that I go to a plumbing supply house as they open (7AM) and ask if I might be able to kindly approach plumbers they know with resume in hand. I usually make a good first impression and look like I take myself seriously. Is this approach too direct?

Would simply be asking for the opportunity to grind for someone and learn along the way.

Anyways, thanks again for your help! Have seriously enjoyed reading comments on this forum.
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Old 06-01-2018, 07:14 PM   #19
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If You check out drain cleaning CO'S you will find that they are much more likely to hire a ape then a straight Plumbing CO. might, they are always
looking for good workers and yes you do a lots and lots of drain work
but there will also be Plumbing work too,
like Opensights is doing drains and working as a ape for a Master,
Drain Cleaners are not as a rule as regulated as Plumbing CO's
take here in TEXAS for Example with over 40 yrs experience in 5 states
and being a Master Plumber since Jan 1989, I am not able to use anything more then a "PLUNGER" here,
but there are still men out there doing drain cleaning work and taking
the chance that they don't get caught and have to pay a fine ! !

you just have to be willing to work long hours and be on call weekends and holidays but there is work if you know where to find it

And I spent 5 yrs in Washington State both on the East side as while as the West side from Bellingham to Puget Sound area Registered as a Apprentice
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Old 06-01-2018, 07:54 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MACPLUMB777 View Post
If You check out drain cleaning CO'S you will find that they are much more likely to hire a ape then a straight Plumbing CO. might, they are always
looking for good workers and yes you do a lots and lots of drain work
but there will also be Plumbing work too,
like Opensights is doing drains and working as a ape for a Master,
Drain Cleaners are not as a rule as regulated as Plumbing CO's
take here in TEXAS for Example with over 40 yrs experience in 5 states
and being a Master Plumber since Jan 1989, I am not able to use anything more then a "PLUNGER" here,
but there are still men out there doing drain cleaning work and taking
the chance that they don't get caught and have to pay a fine ! !

you just have to be willing to work long hours and be on call weekends and holidays but there is work if you know where to find it

And I spent 5 yrs in Washington State both on the East side as while as the West side from Bellingham to Puget Sound area Registered as a Apprentice
Wow! Quite the opposite here! I worked for a drain cleaner who took a risk with every plumbing job he took, never the other way around.

Drain cleaning is recession proof and a good skill to learn if you can handle the nasty. If you’re not willing to put on some waders to walk through 3’ of sewage, drain cleaning is not for you.
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