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TUGBOAT MECHANIC: Built My First Car Engine At 13

About this video 

William shares his story about being a Tugboat Mechanic, describing the functions of the units he repairs and how he goes about diagnosing mechanical problems. William started as a mechanic in his father's auto body shop, where he built his first engine and painted his first car at the age of 13. He advices: you've got to love what you do; and if you want to be a mechanic, you have to work hard at it and keep with it, because good mechanics are a rarity.

Job Title: Machinist

Job Summary: Machinists

Job Description

Machinists and tool and die makers set up and operate a variety of computer-controlled or mechanically-controlled machine tools to produce precision metal parts, instruments, and tools.

On-the-Job Training

Long-term on-the-job training

Additional Info

Completing a recognized certification program provides machinists and tool and die makers with better job opportunities and helps employers judge the abilities of new hires. Journey-level certification is available from state apprenticeship boards after completing an apprenticeship. Many employers recognize this certification, and it often leads to better job opportunities.

Quick Facts

Average salary
Average salary
National Statistic Change Location
Confirm
$20,000 - $60,000
Projected job growth
Projected Job Growth
0 to 10 percent
Typical schedule
Typical schedule
Full-time
Typical workplace
Typical workplace
Indoor, Physically demanding
Personal qualities
Personal Qualities
Analytical skills, Detail oriented, Mathematical skills, Strength/stamina, Technical skills, Hand-eye coordination, Likes working with hands

Educational Path

Education requirement
Education Requirement
High school degree
Associate degree
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P3.instances[0].transcript.parse_transcript_data({"transcript":"<p><span m='430'>I</span> <span m='800'>repair</span> <span m='1400'>Z-drives</span> <span m='2130'>and</span> <span m='2280'>thrusters</span> <span m='2740'>on</span> <span m='2880'>ships.</span> <span m='3920'>Sure,</span> <span m='4210'>most</span> <span m='4510'>of</span> <span m='4580'>them</span> <span m='4650'>are</span> <span m='4740'>tugboats.</span> <span m='5320'>But</span> <span m='5530'>some</span> <span m='5810'>navy,</span> <span m='6760'>commercial,</span> <span m='7360'>you</span> <span m='7450'>know--</span> </p><p><span m='7720'>But</span> <span m='8710'>basically</span> <span m='9130'>what</span> <span m='9300'>a</span> <span m='9360'>thruster</span> <span m='9770'>is,</span> <span m='10150'>is</span> <span m='10800'>it's</span> <span m='11120'>the</span> <span m='11290'>new</span> <span m='12170'>units</span> <span m='12820'>that</span> <span m='12960'>have</span> <span m='13090'>come</span> <span m='13330'>out.</span> <span m='13710'>And</span> <span m='14490'>you</span> <span m='14620'>have</span> <span m='14770'>a</span> <span m='14820'>conventional</span> <span m='15460'>tug,</span> <span m='15790'>which</span> <span m='16020'>is</span> <span m='16129'>operated</span> <span m='16480'>by</span> <span m='16720'>propellers</span> <span m='17200'>and</span> <span m='17280'>a</span> <span m='17360'>shaft.</span> </p><p><span m='18350'>And</span> <span m='18710'>the</span> <span m='18810'>new</span> <span m='18990'>Z-drive</span> <span m='19840'>is</span> <span m='20750'>operated</span> <span m='21460'>and</span> <span m='21650'>it's</span> <span m='21770'>a</span> <span m='22040'>steerable</span> <span m='22460'>propeller.</span> <span m='22800'>So</span> <span m='23140'>the</span> <span m='23210'>propeller</span> <span m='23630'>turns</span> <span m='23950'>360</span> <span m='24640'>degrees.</span> <span m='25610'>And</span> <span m='25810'>it</span> <span m='25910'>gives</span> <span m='26160'>full</span> <span m='26400'>potential</span> <span m='27080'>at</span> <span m='27250'>any</span> <span m='27430'>given</span> <span m='27730'>time</span> <span m='28080'>for</span> <span m='28180'>the</span> <span m='28310'>tugboat.</span> </p><p><span m='29030'>Hard--</span> <span m='30330'>and</span> <span m='30640'>sometimes</span> <span m='31130'>dirty.</span> <span m='31610'>But</span> <span m='32390'>you</span> <span m='32530'>know</span> <span m='32659'>you</span> <span m='33500'>rig</span> <span m='33800'>a</span> <span m='33850'>lot</span> <span m='34050'>of</span> <span m='34090'>heavy</span> <span m='34320'>equipment</span> <span m='34810'>around.</span> <span m='35600'>The</span> <span m='35880'>average</span> <span m='36250'>unit</span> <span m='37070'>could</span> <span m='37220'>weigh</span> <span m='37420'>anywhere</span> <span m='37810'>from</span> <span m='39020'>15</span> <span m='39640'>tons</span> <span m='40070'>to</span> <span m='40770'>30</span> <span m='41020'>tons.</span> </p><p><span m='42900'>And</span> <span m='43060'>then</span> <span m='43210'>of</span> <span m='43280'>course,</span> <span m='43560'>as</span> <span m='43680'>you</span> <span m='43800'>break</span> <span m='44050'>those</span> <span m='44270'>elements</span> <span m='44620'>apart</span> <span m='45110'>to</span> <span m='45240'>get</span> <span m='45480'>to</span> <span m='45580'>the</span> <span m='45700'>problems,</span> <span m='46860'>then</span> <span m='47000'>of</span> <span m='47090'>course</span> <span m='47420'>your load</span> <span m='47630'>gets</span> <span m='47820'>a</span> <span m='47870'>little</span> <span m='48070'>lighter.</span> <span m='49070'>And</span> <span m='49170'>then</span> <span m='49370'>it's</span> <span m='50220'>spherical</span> <span m='50730'>bearings</span> <span m='51330'>you're</span> <span m='51490'>changing</span> <span m='52000'>out.</span> <span m='52790'>You</span> <span m='52960'>try</span> <span m='53180'>to</span> <span m='53270'>determine</span> <span m='53710'>the</span> <span m='53800'>problems.</span> <span m='54560'>And</span> <span m='54710'>once</span> <span m='54950'>you</span> <span m='55070'>determine</span> <span m='55500'>the</span> <span m='55560'>problem</span> <span m='55940'>then</span> <span m='56170'>you</span> <span m='56300'>talk</span> <span m='56510'>to</span> <span m='56600'>the</span> <span m='56730'>customer</span> <span m='57290'>and</span> <span m='57970'>see</span> <span m='58150'>if</span> <span m='58220'>that's</span> <span m='58420'>the</span> <span m='58490'>direction</span> <span m='58830'>they</span> <span m='58890'>want</span> <span m='59070'>to</span> <span m='59120'>go</span> <span m='59250'>in.</span> </p><p><span m='59890'>My</span> <span m='60020'>father</span> <span m='60380'>started</span> <span m='60800'>off</span> <span m='61170'>as--</span> <span m='61780'>we</span> <span m='61940'>had</span> <span m='62090'>a</span> <span m='62130'>little</span> <span m='62300'>body</span> <span m='62580'>shop</span> <span m='62980'>and</span> <span m='63170'>I</span> <span m='63240'>did</span> <span m='63490'>mechanical</span> <span m='64000'>work.</span> <span m='64870'>Built</span> <span m='65129'>my</span> <span m='65209'>first</span> <span m='65519'>car</span> <span m='65800'>engine</span> <span m='66110'>at</span> <span m='66210'>13-years-old.</span> <span m='67890'>Painted</span> <span m='68140'>my</span> <span m='68230'>first</span> <span m='68520'>car at</span> <span m='68870'>13-years-old.</span> <span m='70490'>And</span> <span m='71010'>just</span> <span m='71190'>kind</span> <span m='71430'>of</span> <span m='71470'>mechanically</span> <span m='72000'>inclined.</span> </p><p><span m='72540'>And</span> <span m='74250'>it's</span> <span m='74830'>enjoyable.</span> <span m='75780'>I've</span> <span m='75910'>got</span> <span m='76080'>a</span> <span m='76750'>12th</span> <span m='77030'>grade</span> <span m='77310'>education.</span> <span m='78500'>So--</span> <span m='78920'>didn't</span> <span m='79140'>go</span> <span m='79270'>to</span> <span m='79340'>college</span> <span m='79750'>for</span> <span m='80170'>it.</span> <span m='80320'>You just</span> <span m='80570'>pick</span> <span m='80750'>it</span> <span m='80850'>up.</span> <span m='82430'>You just</span> <span m='82590'>got</span> <span m='82740'>to</span> <span m='82800'>love</span> <span m='82990'>what</span> <span m='83120'>you</span> <span m='83200'>do.</span> </p><p><span m='84080'>Well</span> <span m='84470'>that's</span> <span m='84680'>the</span> <span m='84780'>thing.</span> <span m='85120'>If</span> <span m='85220'>you</span> <span m='85360'>want</span> <span m='85520'>to</span> <span m='85560'>be</span> <span m='85730'>a</span> <span m='85790'>mechanic,</span> <span m='86600'>I</span> <span m='86710'>mean,</span> <span m='87060'>there</span> <span m='87420'>is</span> <span m='87580'>different</span> <span m='87970'>levels.</span> <span m='88380'>Everybody</span> <span m='88770'>says</span> <span m='89040'>\"grease</span> <span m='89300'>monkey\"</span> <span m='89560'>or</span> <span m='89640'>something</span> <span m='89810'>like</span> <span m='89940'>that.</span> <span m='90080'>But</span> <span m='90160'>there</span> <span m='90360'>are</span> <span m='90440'>different</span> <span m='90720'>levels.</span> <span m='91630'>And</span> <span m='92110'>to</span> <span m='92180'>be</span> <span m='92320'>a</span> <span m='92370'>good</span> <span m='92580'>mechanic,</span> <span m='94170'>that's</span> <span m='94470'>a</span> <span m='94520'>rarity.</span> </p><p><span m='95150'>So</span> <span m='95450'>you</span> <span m='95590'>know,</span> <span m='95720'>just</span> <span m='95930'>work</span> <span m='96110'>hard</span> <span m='96380'>at</span> <span m='96590'>it</span> <span m='96740'>and</span> <span m='97050'>stick</span> <span m='97300'>with</span> <span m='97500'>it.</span> <span m='98430'>Don't</span> <span m='98560'>worry</span> <span m='98720'>about</span> <span m='98920'>the</span> <span m='99000'>dirty</span> <span m='99250'>fingernails</span> <span m='99900'>and</span> <span m='99980'>all</span> <span m='100170'>that</span> <span m='100420'>because</span> <span m='100700'>the</span> <span m='100770'>ladies</span> <span m='101090'>love</span> <span m='101310'>that.</span> <span m='102620'>And</span> <span m='102800'>there's</span> <span m='102960'>a</span> <span m='103020'>lot</span> <span m='103210'>of</span> <span m='103270'>women</span> <span m='103530'>mechanics</span> <span m='103990'>out</span> <span m='104110'>there</span> <span m='104270'>too,</span> <span m='104530'>you</span> <span m='104630'>know.</span> <span m='104850'>They</span> <span m='105560'>can</span> <span m='105730'>hold</span> <span m='105970'>their own</span> <span m='106210'>with</span> <span m='106350'>me.</span> </p><p><span m='107930'>It's</span> <span m='108110'>a</span> <span m='108150'>good</span> <span m='108330'>field</span> <span m='108510'>to</span> <span m='108560'>be</span> <span m='108730'>in.</span> <span m='109160'>A</span> <span m='109470'>lot</span> <span m='109650'>of</span> <span m='109700'>hard</span> <span m='109920'>work.</span> <span m='110380'>But</span> <span m='110850'>there's</span> <span m='111110'>good</span> <span m='111280'>money</span> <span m='111540'>in it</span> <span m='111810'>if</span> <span m='111970'>you</span> <span m='112060'>stick</span> <span m='112290'>to</span> <span m='112470'>it.</span> </p>","file":{"id":320086,"video_id":"2926905368001","name":"1609-William-p-TugboatMechanic","duration":113291,"thumbnail_url":null}});