Auto Body Apprenticeship Blog
For the last 7 years I have been working at a few collision repair shops starting out like many I moved from detailing, to prepping then
to painting. I made the transition fairly quick and attended various
training seminars along the way, mostly I-Car and BASF paint training
courses. I am currently working in a family owned shop where my job now
consists of primarily managing the production floor and carrying out
various repairs in the shop.
At 26 my decision to not graduate high school caught up with me as it will for most, I hit the books for a few months, wrote my GED
(equivalency test) and passed with flying colors. I did this so I could
get myself registered as an Auto Body and Mechanical apprentice. This
blog is not going to cover much about the mechanical apprenticeship, I
may yet write one but we shall see what time is like.
My primary motivation was to learn more about the collision repair end of the business but it's worth noting that this apprenticeship also
covers everything included in becoming a licensed painter, so there
will be plenty of information on that topic included. Since auto body
repair is a regulated trade (in Canada anyhow), nobody that doesn't
have a license or isn't registered as an apprentice is forbid by law
from carrying out any structural repair.
Since registering I am getting more involved in collision repair with the help of two licensed bodymen (one being my father). Over the next
few years I plan to balance my repair allocations to about half body
repairs and half mechanical. We currently have a great painter to look
after our needs in that end, I will still likely be taking on overtime
on busy weeks painting when necessary.
So what's gonna be covered in the blog you ask?
Well, I'd love to tell you everything but I will have to go with
whatever time permits. I am hopeful that as I write the blog it will
help the information sink in also, could perhaps work as a study guide
for me that anyone else interested in can benefit from. If you are
interested in something specific or have a question let me know in
either the comments below, private messaging or post in the forum.
What is the game plan?
The way the apprenticeship works is I need to complete 3 things:
7,280 hrs of on the job training
Signatures of Various Task Completions by a Licensed Tech
3 x 8 week In-Class Courses (or testout)
......ya, or test-out, I like the sounds of that too. My current goal is to spend some time studying to challenge the tests. There will be 3
tests, one for each in class segment. I will need to get in touch with
the local college here (Centennial) to let me know what topics will be
on each one so I can really prepare accordingly. I can challenge each
test as many times as I like but it will cost me $150 each time. If I
am unsuccessful I will just take the class. For my mechanical
apprenticeship I am not going to try and challenge them, I'm just gonna
take the class.
Once I complete these three objectives I will hold a license good in my
province, I will have one more test to write that will make it
recognized across Canada and I am done with the testing.
So now where am I gonna learn all this great stuff?
It is coming from the actual text book for the course, Auto Body Repair Technology by James E. Duffy (5th edition). It cost me about $160 for
the book and I've only glanced at it so far and gotta say it's worth
every penny. It covers everything! It`s gonna give you a ton of
illustrations that will just put it all in perspective, if you`ve got
some cash to spend, this is a great place to spend it. I purchased it
on amazon.ca because the sellers on E-bay couldn`t ship the book
The book covers things like terminology, hand tool technology,
compressed air systems,vehicle construction, welding, shop safety,
using fillers, estimating, repairing plastic, changing glass, frame
damage, electrical, restraint systems, refinish technology, refinish
procedures, troubleshooting and soooo much more. Here is what it looks
like (about 1000 pages btw) :
This blog is intended to be a complete journey to certification, a combination of hands on and theory. Don`t forget to subscribe to it through feedburner to get email updates on new posts. Thanks, I welcome
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