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noelh

What was your first job and other early work experiences.

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At school (2 afternoons a week, plus during holidays) and during holidays from uni I worked at a light engineering company.

 

It generally involved spending several hours in front of a power press, saw or drill doing various incredibly repetitive things to thousands of small pieces of metal and listening to my Sony Walkman in an effort to relieve the utter tedium. Some employees had done that for 25 years, and not necessarily with the Walkman. Astonishing.

 

I very quickly learned that there was no way on earth that I would end up stuck in a job like that after I graduated...and I didn't. I was well treated, and the employees were a good bunch of people, but it was a valuable early lesson.

 

Jon

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1 hour ago, noelh said:

Go on bzn20

That'll be for tomorrow ish !

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13 hours ago, noelh said:

You should have. Best skill I ever learned although I didn't appreciate it at the time.  I used to work in jet engine maintenance facility. An office job in the Engineering department. An office Clerk, does that even exist anymore? Over the years the job changed and most of the Clerks were girls and skilled typists. We clerks each supported an Engineer or two. One job was typing up reports and other documents. I couldn't type and it was decided that I needed to learn. I was miffed because despite all my experience apparently my main job was now to be typist for someone else. But I went on the course and now I can touch type at quite a speed. A must for almost everyone these days. They also decided that all the Clerks would all take on relief main receptionist duties. Male or female but just before I was due to do my stint someone took fright at the idea of my ugly mug being the first thing an unsuspecting visitor might see on arrival. So I got away with it. 

 

Definitely a worthwhile skill.

That brings back memories,I worked near the girls typing class,Always made sure I was out the front cleaning the window at the shop I worked when they went by,AHHH Memories!!!

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On 4/6/2019 at 2:29 PM, Rabbit Leader said:

Avionics Apprentice with Australian Airlines - 27 January 1988.

(T)AA was then absorbed into Qantas sometime in 1994 and 31 years, 2 months and 10 days later - I'm still here! (although I've had many internal jobs in-bewteen). 

 

Cheers... Dave 

 

Funny Dave I worked for Ansett in the Seventies at Mascot for 13years,I was just load control,but they were good times.

Cheers Jim

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27 minutes ago, Jim Wasley said:

Funny Dave I worked for Ansett in the Seventies at Mascot for 13years,I was just load control,but they were good times.

Cheers Jim

Nice to know Jim. That Ansett vs. TAA era was certainly a special period in our country's proud aviation's history, it's nice to know we played a small part in it. 

Cheers.. Dave  

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12 hours ago, Vince1159 said:

I know that feeling,same here washed my dad's Avenger (well chuffed when i'd finished using the hose) until he realised the pax door window was open....

In my case I not sure if it was due to incompetence or poor work ethic, probably a bit of both.

I didn't take it to appeal, eight year olds rarely do.

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Posted (edited)

In my case it was incompetence,as a 10 year old i should have known better but it still didn't stop me trying to blame him for not closing it!....

Edited by Vince1159

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Posted (edited)

Hi friends

 

Its a nice topic.

Well, i left the school 1981 in age of 16 and started a education as painter, not artist painter but a painter who paint rooms, houses, glue wall paper and put carpet in room and so on, that education took 3 years,and i was graduate to a in german Geselle ( i dont know the english word for ) but i didnt feel comfortable in this job.

Since my childhood i dreamt of to be a soldier, so i apply to german Bundeswehr in 1984 and i was successful, So at april 1st 1985 i have to go to Transport Batallion 15/I in Delmenhorst/Germany, there i get a basic education and a special education for a ammunition and fuel service man.

 

After three month and graduation i get order to move to the 1./ Pionierbataillon 120 ( first platoon of Engineer Bataillon 120 ) in Dörverden/ Germany. Here i got my fully education to be an Ordnance wart or ammunition soldier, i dont know exactly english name for it, sorry.

I stayed there 8 years and i was totally happy and lucky with my job, after the 8 years i wanted extend my service there to make 12 years, but this time the wall was falling and they wanted to move me to Storkow/ East Germany near to polish border line, but i didnt feel for it, so i decided to leave the Bundeswehr in 1993.

Since 1993 i was worked as truck driver at a slaughter house, a really great job and a very good salary, but after the Introduction of the EURO money 2001, our real income gets low and lower, and the  peoples gets more bad mood everywhere, some clients attack me, even i dont make mistake so i decided in 2017 to end up to working as a truck driver, since 2017 i am working in fleet management of one of the biggest Mercedes-Benz dealers in Germany the Egon Senger GmbH. Senger have 21 locations in Germany, and if a client want test driving a special version of a Mercedes and this car is not available in Oldenburg, i have to get it from other location, or i have to bring a car to other location, also my job is to make regsitration for getting number plate for clients, i like my job there now..........

Edited by Harry Callahan

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My very first job was getting up at 5 am to help one of the local milkmen on his delivery rounds when I was about 10 years old. He used to have one of those electric milk floats that you had to walk (it looked as though he was pulling it, but it was powered). I got the princely sum of  two shillings a day for that (tha's 10 pence for those of you who've never dealt with £sd). Didn't stay with him long as the walking was killing me, so I graduated to another milk roundsman who had a van for his deliveries. Much more civilised, especially when he was paying three shillings a day!

But when I left school in '61 at the age of 15, I started to work at a firm called John Sadd and Sons in Southend, assembling window frames. It was supposed to be a carpentry apprenticeship, but it was just  cheap production line work. I left.

 

John.

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11 hours ago, Jonners said:

At school (2 afternoons a week, plus during holidays) and during holidays from uni I worked at a light engineering company.

 

It generally involved spending several hours in front of a power press, saw or drill doing various incredibly repetitive things to thousands of small pieces of metal and listening to my Sony Walkman in an effort to relieve the utter tedium. Some employees had done that for 25 years, and not necessarily with the Walkman. Astonishing.

 

I very quickly learned that there was no way on earth that I would end up stuck in a job like that after I graduated...and I didn't. I was well treated, and the employees were a good bunch of people, but it was a valuable early lesson.

 

Jon

My last (proper) job while in a totally different industry, medical devices, was like that. Mind numbing 12 hour shifts assembling catheters, strictly controlled breaks including toilet breaks. Constantly increased daily targets to make it worse. Plus a bad attitude from those in charge. It was the one and only time I quit a job without anywhere to go and I'm used to hard work and long days. 

Amazingly several people on my line were college graduates. Not much work for people with Physics degrees apparently. It was their first proper job after college. 

People think those kind of jobs are all automated these days. They certainly are not. 

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My first job involved a 4 year apprenticeship in tool making, one day a week at the local college (walsall college of arts and technology). First year spent in a training center learning turning, milling, bench fitting, welding and electrical fitting. Got a placement at an engineering company and was let loose milling 50-100 ton fabrications for power presses. Big work for a 17 year old school leaver!. Got made redundant after my apprenticeship ended, and bounced around a few engineering companies in the midlands. Got a job cnc turning, ended up a self taught programmer. 

Still doing the same thing 30 years later, but now living in the steel city of sheffield. 

Keep meaning to try and get away from engineering, but it keeps sucking me back in. 

 

Matt

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First job was bottling up in my parents pub when i was a nipper. No payment as such unless you count a half pint of Trophy bitter and a bag of Quavers! First 'proper' job at 16 was a junior sales assistant in a menswear shop. 40 quid a week plus commission. Not bad when all my mates were on a YTS at 23 quid a week.

 

Regards

 

Steve

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Worked in my year off between school and university at the local agricultural research stations. Hand pollinating turnips all day, shovelling mugsful of dormant flies into pollination cages, dragging trolleys with radioisotope sources in lead cases over ploughed fields, weighing soil samples, drying them and weighing again, hoeing fields of brassica seedlings by hand (my pet hate), counting/measuring/harvesting plants in experimental plots. Then worked at a forestry consultancy on experimental charcoal-burning, with a chain saw and metal kiln in the (mostly) long hot summer of 1976. Just as well mum had had a shower put in! She thought it would be educational for me to have at least some exposure to manual labour and tedious jobs. 

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8 hours ago, noelh said:

12 hour shifts assembling catheters, strictly controlled breaks including toilet breaks

And they said satire was dead...

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As a 1st-year student, I  went home for a Christmas break but returned early as I'd lined up a temp job. Starting at 07:30 on 1st January, I had to cut complete rolls of vinyl floor covering (3m x15m) into 30cm squares so they could be incorporated into sample books. The really bad news is that the workspace was a Dutch barn and the temperature was hovering around zero °C.

I managed to see out the entire 2 weeks of my contract but I can not and will not entertain the notion of vinyl floor coverings to this day...

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9 hours ago, Bullbasket said:

My very first job was getting up at 5 am to help one of the local milkmen on his delivery rounds when I was about 10 years old. He used to have one of those electric milk floats that you had to walk (it looked as though he was pulling it, but it was powered). I got the princely sum of  two shillings a day for that (tha's 10 pence for those of you who've never dealt with £sd). Didn't stay with him long as the walking was killing me, so I graduated to another milk roundsman who had a van for his deliveries. Much more civilised, especially when he was paying three shillings a day!

But when I left school in '61 at the age of 15, I started to work at a firm called John Sadd and Sons in Southend, assembling window frames. It was supposed to be a carpentry apprenticeship, but it was just  cheap production line work. I left.

 

John.

Interesting read this, I suppose my first job was when I went to visit my Nan in the school holidays, I'd be 9 or 10. Got up around seven to help Roy the Milkman deliver around the top of the village green. Memories! Roy & Peggy(his horse) pulling the milk cart.

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2 minutes ago, chris57 said:

Roy & Peggy(his horse) pulling the milk cart.

That must have been a big cart if it needed the horse and the milkman to pull it...

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Just now, bhouse said:

That must have been a big cart if it needed the horse and the milkman to pull it...

Yes I realized I'd misrepresented it . Foolish boy.

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2 hours ago, bhouse said:

And they said satire was dead...

I knew that I'm that good. 😉🤨

I hope you're not taking the p. 

 

If they'd got away with it they would. 

 

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Moonlighting 1
Working for a Removal Company while in the RAF 1982  . We were on a 3 days,,3 nights then 6 days off shift cycle . It was brilliant . Quite a few went moonlighting for the 6 days , had permission to do it from the RAF .

Me and the other Corporal on my shift used to team up driving Bedford TK Pantechnicons . We both had HGV 3s and was an okay job usually .

We had to move an Army Warrant Officer 2 and his tribe , wife and 4 nippers out of Bicester and back to Brize for some others to take it the next day.

 

Got there and the wife was outside the front door on the path in her nightie and food splashed loosely tied maroon satin gown ,furry slippers , arms folded , half inch of roll up hanging out of her mouth  watching her 3 Llassa Apsos using the front garden ,path and steps as a toilet .. Have we got the right address Bob ? 'sposed to be a WO2's house , she's leaping .  .. Excuse me ,you Mrs Smith ? Yes you found the right place .. She's got no teeth Bob ! Bob's laughing . This doesn't bode well.

Walked in the front room a boy in PJs on the couch , about 4 with a baby bottle full of Ribena that he's squirting jets of it all over the room . The sideboard ( MOD G Plan standard) had a broom handle with attached head stuck through all the Ally drawer handles so the snappers couldn't open them and another lump of wood through the cupboard door handles . No idea how they did it the broom hit the ceiling before it was free of all the handles and cra*p everywhere ,bowls of left Weetabix . It was heaving. Like a cuppa ? We live on cuppas . Yes please , two  Coffees NATO and what you having Mick ?(the boss just turned up)  No thanks . She went out to make them . Not having a drink Mick  ,what's wrong with you? … He said . I've seen the kitchen . What's wrong with it ? Worse than this as he points around the room ! That was a warning for later .

Started to move out stuff from 3 bedrooms

Went to move a cot full of bedding , pulled the blanket off and this big black cat came flying out of the cot hissing and claws on full deflection like flick knives , I jumped  and it got a reflex swipe and vanished outside. Found 2 used nappies on the floor . I'm starting to feel ill ! Wardrobe doors tied and slid down the stairs .

 

WO2 and Mrs Smiths room was a toilet, clothes on floor, bed floor ,everywhere turfed all off the bed with bedding . Bed won't move . Looked underneath … It had 4 legs  but the whole thing was supported by piles of Lech mags, Fiestas , Mayfairs , Men Onlys etc . 1 foot columns of them … Bob ,come and look at this lot . We had to lift the bed up and over magazines . 4 stacks either side and 5 or 6 down the centre . Just left them in formation on the floor  . Clothes went in the wardrobe and handles tied and launched down the stairs .

WO2 turns up , alright lads ? Fine thanks … When is your march out Mr Smith ? Tomorrow afternoon ,plenty of time . Must be mad . A week next January would be too soon to sort this place out . Wish I'd been there to see it . Can't imagine what his bill was up to of what I'd seen already and still the kitchen to go .

The Kitchen was disgusting . Cat litter tray for the Cot Ninja who'd kicked and scraped the litter heap up the side of the cooker . It looked like a cutaway cooker drawing . The acid was eating the side panel about 4 inches of the bottom at the back and 2 inches at the front was already gone . It's all over the floor too . I need a bath and the reason Mick refuse the Coffee . Luckily we hadn't started our coffees either . Lets hurry up and get out of here. Did the rest in record time and gone.

Got back to Brize parked up and rushed home for a bath ! Panic baths became the norm after moving people's stuff .

 

 

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First Job while at school was working for Morrisions. As a big lad I was tasked with collecting all the shopping trolleys for the 2 story car par above the shop and bringing them back down in the lift. Pay was not bad for a Saturday job and they left me alone all day. As long as there was trolleys for the punters all was OK.  Occasionally had to walk all over town getting rouge trolleys back that were reported to management.  As we were next to a Marks & Sparks brought one of theirs back one day and the manager said he would give me a Pound for any I found and brought back. In 1985 this was worth it. Made quite a bit on the side doing that.

 

First job on leaving school was my Apprenticeship at shipbuilders, navy jobs one Frigate and 3 subs plus parts of the Trident Subs. I miss that place.

 

Julien

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My first paying job was on the cleaning staff of a supermarket. I stuck it out for a year,before quiting because both my boss and the union rep were utterly untrustworthy. That job gave me a an antipathy to union jobs for a long time.

 

My first proper job out of art school was in a printing company working in their printing plate production department. A job that no longer exists today with computer to plate technology well entrenched.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Like many others I had a paper delivery round. When I became an art student I had a Saturday bakers round, The baker could never work out why we were always down on French fancies, (that icing was delicious) I then cycled into Nottingham to spend my earnings in the model shops, then on to Tollerton aerodrome or RCAF Langar, plane spotting with my mate Derek Bailey.

 

I then applied for the RAF and as I was only 17, I had to wait six months until I could join at 17 years and six months. in February 1960.  However my man's service would only officially start six months later, when I became 18. So the extra six months was added onto the end of my service for my pension.. Talk about Catch 22. It was 22 years and six months!

 

However, to fill in time after leaving Art School, a near neighbor, Johnnie Helgers, who was the stage carpenter at the Nottingham Playhouse  took me on as his assistant.  So every day we drove into Nottingham in Johnnies bright Red Heinkel Bubble car. It had no reverse gear so we parked in a tiny slot by lifting each end sideways in turn.

I thought that 'John' had a strange accent and I then learned his name was Hans and he had been a Me 109.E pilot in Libya, until he was shot down by a Hurricane and captured. he finally came to a camp in England where in 1946 he met his English wife and settled here.  Johnnie told me that their main opponents were Gladiators, but a Hurricane kill was the dream prize and the first Hurricane he saw was the one that shot him down,

Another story from John was when they were on a POW ship in Alexandria harbor a lone Stuka  appeared over the city and all the POW's started to cheer, until the Captain came on the Tannoy with, "Sorry chaps but we borrowed that one" The POW's were shipped via Suez to South Africa then to South America, America then Canada and finally to Wollaton Park in England.

 

So I can truthfully say I have traveled in a Heinkel with a Messerschmitt pilot.

 

John

Edited by John Aero

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Posted (edited)

More moonlighting

 

Lasham ,Dan-Air's engineering base near Basingstoke , can't remember exactly if it was 1973 or 1978 , I was either 17 or 24 .. Freezing cold day in Hangar 1 on a Dan's 707 . Hangar doors been open so the scoffolders could get it up around the fin and tail plane . Usual lack of refinement from Dan's ,scaffolding , most places had proper staging . Eventually the doors shut and we weren't in Alaska anymore .

The aircraft cleaning team , 4 or 5 women turned up and started whinging about the cold , TV and  last night's Bingo losses in the nearest Mecca . Put your Amber cleanse in your hot water bucket Ethel ,much better . Doesn't freeze your hands … No thought, they all put cans in buckets of hot water .. BTW Its an aerosol can ,should be fun ! Off they trog in a gaggle across the hangar floor ,a mass of brooms, mops , tote tray full of cleaning gear chatting about Bingo ,cold ,Coronation Street  , cold and more Bingo and scraping of feet .

Imagine like on CSI , Camera close ups of things going wrong . Bucket Cam showing one or two cans in each bucket wobbling about getting hot ,bubbles and surf splashing .

AND WHOOOSH water all over the place ,screams, and aerosols streaming up like Polaris just missing the Bingo crowd's arms and heads and up and away……BA BANG ANG Punched holes in the hangar roof 60 feet above !.. Straight through ,no messing and perfectly round holes  . Never seen anything like , So funny ,I was crying ,everyone was  . The women didn't think it was funny ! They went for a tea break and lie down .

Lasham was always good for a laugh .

Edited by bzn20

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, John Aero said:

However my man's service

You were lucky, I did 2 years to 18 and a further 12 for 14 in total . 1970-84 . I also did 2 years at Art College !

Edited by bzn20

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