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Welding/Instructional Aid


Hey Ernie! My name is Chris, and I'm from Oakland. My company has me in Tacoma on a month-long business trip, and I NEED to obtain my WABO certification in vertical and over-head stick while I'm here. I've practiced back in Oakland, but I am by no means proficient. I need instruction, but really only have the weekends to work with.

I've gotten in touch with quite a few local shops and expressed my needs, with little or no interest expressed (if I got a response at all#. Of course, I mentioned that I'm willing to drive to them, and then pay them for time and supplies, but no one is biting. I understand that no one wants to be responsible for putting another 'dime-a-dozen' welder out there; one who can pass a test, but not actually weld. However, the job I'm trying for requires almost no welding in the day-to-day, but by company regulations, requires a certification. Besides this job, I'm very interested in welding as a hobby and would very much like to pursue it in my off time #until recently I was a mechanic by trade, but will always be a mechanic in my spare time#, and I'm getting to the point where bolt-ons and engine building isn't quite enough; I want to do more custom and fabrication work. I tell you all of this so you know I'm not just trying to get through the cracks and become another useless welder with a piece of paper. That being said, I still need the certification, and soon.

Do you know where I can receive this kind of instruction, and in my spare time? Again, I'm willing to pay per session, or hourly, and for supplies...I'm very flexible with that. It just needs to be on the weekend, and it needs to be with enough proficiency to allow me to pass the certification test within the next month.

Thank you for your time!


I do teach private lessons at my shop in Renton on weekends.
I am a WABO Special Inspector for structural steel, but I can't run a WABO weld test, only inspect finished welds.

That said, a friend of mine runs the local Boilermakers training center.
He can run WABO tests, but has no time for practice.

The solution I see is to get training and practice with me, and run the test with him.

You can email me direct at  


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Ernie Leimkuhler


Questions about Oxy-Acetylene welding/cutting, MIG, TIG, Flux-core, Stick welding, brazing and soldering, bike frames, air frames, motorcycle frames, structural welding. Also questions about Welding Certifications and Inspections. All questions about fabrication of metals (stainless steel, steel , aluminum, brass, bronze, copper). Basic questions about underwater welding. TIG is my strongest subject.


Extensive background in most welding fields. 18 years fabrication of metal theatre scenery, 16 years structural steel, 2 years pipe welding, 9 years as a Welding Instructor at South Seattle Community College, and 5.5 years as a Welding Instructor at the Divers Institute of Technology. 16 years Industrial Welding Consultant for fabrication shops in the greater Seattle Area. 11 years Architectural Metal Fabrication. 8 years in Film/TV; SPFX/construction/set-deco/props/. 33 years Blacksmithing and Knifemaking. Currently a Field Welding Inspector for Otto Rosenau and Associates.

American Welding Society - Certified Welding Inspector Washington Assoc of Building Officials (WABO) - Special Inspector - Structural and Reinforcing Steel.

Do a search on google groups for "Ernie Leimkuhler" in the rec.crafts.metalworking and sci.engr.joining.welding groups. Blacksmith's Gazzette - Anvil Making

BA Theatre Technology - Purdue University.

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