Metal Boot Camp

Welding is just one aspect of metalwork. We have developed six classes,  that will teach you the most important tools and processes used in fabrication, and art-metalwork.

Each class is priced individually. Click the date, times and price of the class you want on the calendar  The classes can be taken in any order and they repeat in a cycle to help ensure you can schedule with us easily.  The price includes everything required.

In “Geek-out on Welding Machines” We will  examine each machine and learn to read and understand the “nameplate” which allows you to evaluate and compare the capabilities of each machine.  We will discuss some beginning and intermediate MIG techniques and introduce, TIG and STICK welding. This is intended to build on what we teach in the MIG welding intensive and also demonstrate Stick and TIG welding on mild steel.

Each type of welding has it’s strengths and weaknesses. Mig (GMAW and FCAW) is a very easy-to-use process that is very fast, but it is difficult to produce very fine controlled welds and works poorly on some materials like Aluminum and bronze. Stick (SMAW) welding is very cheap, portable and versatile but works best on a heavy class of materials. TIG is extremely versatile, but it is a difficult process to master. TIG is the preferred method for welding aluminum. Knowing when and how to use each is an essential skill, and one that demonstrates competency.

The goal of the class is to teach you to identify and evaluate each type of machine, how to troubleshoot each process and how to select a piece of equipment for your operation. you will know what each machine is and does and have a sense of how to select, adjust and use each machine. You will learn the principles of conventional welding.  We also discuss electrical safety at length so that you understand why welding is a safer practice than woodworking. Class is 60% hands on.

Please click the calendar listing to see a complete description and to book your class.

In, “Grinding for Redemption” We will examine a very broad variety of grinding gear and help you become comfortable with it. We will discuss safe practices, unsafe practices, how to buy the good products and what to avoid and why. Once you know how to grind competently you will find that producing perfect looking metal-work is mostly a matter of patience. Bad welds can be smoothed out or removed entirely, you can literally cut something in half and re weld it with no aesthetic or structural loss.  We will teach you how to grind out welds very, very quickly, the central tricks of flat grinding, weld prep, and how to grind and cut aluminum easily. You will learn to speak sparks.

Please click the calendar listing to see a complete description and to book your class.

In, “Cutting Remarks” Will orient you to the Horizontal vertical bandsaw, Abrasive saws, step and lever shears and the variety of cutting tools used in metalwork. We will cover core concepts like feed and speed  and discuss how to use, purchase, maintain and modify metalworking equipment. You will use the tools and work on a project that helps you develop familiarity and competence with the tools.

BTW posting a picture of yourself with an abrasive saw throwing sparks everywhere is mandatory.

Please click the calendar listing to see a complete description and to book your class.

 In “Hot Cutting in Dirty Leather” We will focus on shape cutting using hand held plasma and oxy- fuel torches.

The class will focus on showing you how to operate plasma cutting and oxy acetylene equipment. These are two of the principal tools used for cutting, bending and working metals. Nothing says metal like an oxy fuel torch.

The class will be about 60% hands on. We will begin work on a small project that will help you hone your new skills and the habits that will keep you safe while working with hot metal and new tools.

Please click the calendar listing to see a complete description and to book your class.

 “CNC Plasma Cutting, “Your Will is my command Prompt” we will instruct you in Computer Numeric Control plasma cutting. Basically, we will teach you how to make a hapless robot do your evil bidding. If you intend to take over the world with a robotic army, this is an important step. When you need two or ten or a thousand of the same thing, robotic cutting is the only answer.

You will operate a CNC plasma table with a five by ten foot bed to cut steel or aluminum in the shape of your choosing. We ask that students prepare for class by bringing a shape or form they wish to cut in 1/16th” thick steel. Clients will be supplied with project parameters before class. We will ask that projects be kept within a certain size OR that clients supply the materials. This is a vital skill which will help you to take advantage of the types of automated cutting that are commercially available.

The class will be about 60% hands on and will heavily rely on your ability to prepare a little beforehand and exercise a little creativity.

Please click the calendar listing to see a complete description and to book your class.


In “TIG Welding, Precise, Refined and Demanding” we will introduce Tig welding on Aluminum. This class is open to a max of 8 people. TIG welding is the most difficult of all the conventional welding processes. We will explain the materials and process, how to recognize and troubleshoot your errors. TIG welding takes time to master. We advise that you plan on taking several TIG welding classes with us, or scheduling practice time if you wish to develop this skill. Tig welding of Aluminum requires precise coordination, focus, and a firm grasp of the technical issues involved in the process. By the end of the class you will understand the process, but should be prepared to dedicate significant additional time to develop a baseline competency. One learns TIG welding in the same way that one learns any open-ended complex process that involves fine motor skills, like guitar, or painting. Practice practice practice.

Please click the calendar listing to see a complete description and to book your class.

We look forward to instructing you,

Rusty & McKenzie (The Hazard Factory Team)

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