Discuss Improver in a pickle in the Electrical Forum area at ElectriciansForums.net

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Hi all.

In a bit of a situation which is starting to cause a fair bit of stress and figured maybe asking some silly questions here may help to collect my thoughts on the matter .

So my situation is this :
For the last 2.5 years I've been working alongside a spark(I'm a mature learner ) whilst also achieving the following :

Level 2 8202
Level 3 8202
18th edition A2
NVQ 3 Portfolio
my AM2 is pending. Realistically, at the minute I'd rather have more experience/confidence and also a little more cash aside in case the nerves get the better of me and I need to pay to resit any modules.

So basically , A) the work is drying up with the contractor I currently work for and I know that very soon I need to be looking for a new job. The situation is made a little more complex by a few additional factors (partner out of work and other external stressors which mean I need to get a move on basically)
I've literally just started putting the feelers out there for something else but I'm in a slight panic over the following facts :

1. It seems everywhere I look, improvers and mates are expected to have their own vans,tools and kit! I have a fairly well equipped set up of hand tools and PPE but I'm not self employed and I can't afford to just....go and buy half of the deWalt catalogue. I've only ever experienced being a direct employee and though I've built up some hand tools...I dont have my very own MFT or SDS drills and such.

2. I only have an automatic driving licence which is again a problem I'm looking to overcome as fast as I can. I've thought about it for ages but silly me decided to wait til it became a problem.

3. My experience to date is with mainly domestic and commercial(on the lighter end of the spectrum ) so it's obviously going to be a struggle for me to just land a maintenance job in a huge factory somewhere (won't it ?)..

4 I still feel a bit green some days and not really at the point where I can confidently stride onto site on my own and know everything ,I'm also feel a bit slow at times. Some days are better than others basically.


Just wondering if anyone has previously experienced any similar hurdles ?
 

Dustydazzler

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Believe me its sounds like you are more clued up than half the sparks I have worked with on-site over the past 20 years.
I have know sparks turn up on-site with literally the most basic tool set up and very very limited experience.
Can you not jump on an agency and job about a bit. Its not perfect but you can earn good money and pick up experience at the same time. With agency would you don't need a van , you just need to turn up on-site with basic tools
 

James

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If you are doing mainly domestic, a van is not required, a small automatic hatchback can easily carry a cordless drill, toolbox and enough parts to rewire a house.

I do a lot of commercial work and 95% of that i can do with the following
knife
cable cutters
set of screwdrivers
cordless drill
adjustable spanner x 2
crimp tool x 2 (insulated & uninsulated)

you can build up your tool collection as you go on,
e.g. a job might require a certain size hole saw for downlights buy it once and you wont need to get another for the next time.
 

MJPD29

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Your hand tools will do the vast majority of your work and you can pick up decent power tools cheap second hand. As for the experience and knowledge, no one knows everything. It’s a job where you’re always meeting new issues and it’s more about having a methodical way of working through it and learning as you go, as long as you have the right attitude you’ll be fine. You’d be surprised how many companies are looking for someone reliable as yourself rather than an 18 year old on their phone all day, just put the word out there or try agencies and you’ll find something to suit.
 

timhoward

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I have a fairly well equipped set up of hand tools and PPE but I'm not self employed and I can't afford to just....go and buy half of the deWalt catalogue. I've only ever experienced being a direct employee and though I've built up some hand tools...I dont have my very own MFT or SDS drills and such.
Contrary to what you might believe by watching youtube sparks, a modest set of tools can accomplish a lot and not all of us have an infinite collection of battery power tools!
Probably the two items you can't do without is a reasonable cordless drill with 2 batteries and an MFT.
Regarding an MFT you could consider pinking up a Megger 1552/3 2nd hand with calibration when funds permit. They are largely indestructible and are perfectly adequate IMHO.

I had a mains multitool and SDS for years. I still carry both of them just in case. In general corded tools are often very cheap indeed, even more so 2nd hand and they get the work done.
All the best with picking up more work.
 

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