There’s something indescribably satisfying about working with one’s own hands. Creating real, useful objects from raw materials is about as poetic an expression of work as we have as a species. If you find comfort and joy in the act of shaping items from materials, perhaps a career in carpentry would appeal to you. Today, we’re going to take a look at the careers, duties and average salary one could expect as a carpenter.
Education and Requirements
Carpenters must be skilled crafters who work with raw materials, usually wood, to create constructions like tables and cabinets. In order to prepare oneself for work in this field, education in woodshop class would be an ideal start. If you’re no longer in high school, taking courses at a trade school or community college would be recommended. Many carpenters begin their careers by apprenticing under an established carpenter.
That said, there is no strict education requirement for carpenters. If you want to break into the field professionally, seek out a carpenter to see if they are looking to apprentice new hires. Similarly, if you have a background in construction or similar fields, you may be able to find on-the-job training. For some positions, such as finish carpentry, attending a trade school may be required to work for certain firms or shops.
Careers and Responsibilities
There are many different types of carpentry. Generally speaking, they can be broken down into rough carpentry and finish carpentry. Rough carpenters work outdoors, usually in conjunction with larger construction products. They utilize blueprints to help determine material components required for jobs. They then work on building wooden constructs to specifications in order to complete buildings. Rough carpenters are generally seen as being similar to construction workers.
Finish carpenters, by contrast, generally work indoors on furniture and cabinetry. They are also occasionally responsible for creating wooden models and instruments. Usually, these types of carpenters work in a woodshop, although they will occasionally go to a construction site if they need to work on something like cabinetry. Some finish carpenters specialize in trim, such as that found along doors and floor.
Even more careers are available in carpentry than just these, though! Wooden ships require shipwrights, who are a type of carpenter. Wooden stringed instruments are repaired by specialized carpenters known as luthiers.
On average, a carpenter makes $36,000 per year. Keep in mind that, as you have read, carpentry is a very broad field with a wide range of career options. As such, it’s hard to precisely say what amount any given carpenter will be paid without consulting the job site.
As you can see, the field of carpentry is a very broad one. If you’re interested in work in this field, you’ll be pleased to know that demand is going up all the time. Carpentry is expected to experience further growth as the population and economy both grow!