At age sixteen I secured a four year technical apprenticeship with Trafalgar House, (subsequently bought out by Kvaerner).
The first year of the apprenticeship was spent offsite at a training school. Time was spent in various disciplines, including fabrication, welding, electronics, machining and turning and eventually leading to the final three months learning to draft to British Standards.
Kvaerners’ Teesside Yard
The second year started on site, at Kvaerners' Teesside yard. This year was spent in various departments to learn how all aspects of the yard worked. After spending time in the planning department and fit-out drawing office I spent nine months in dimensional control, assisting the on-site survey crew with various aspects of setting-out and tolerance checking of offshore modules. This time was invaluable as it provided great insight into how a module is fabricated.
On-the-job training started in the third year, where appentices were matched with an experience mentor and began drafting in all aspects of offshore module work.
In an office of over thirty draughtsmen, CAD use was limited to three computers running Autocad. The rest of the detailing was done manually. This was invaluable as it taught you how to properly set out a drawing sheet, and think through your drawings prior to setting-out.
The office slowly migrated to Autocad, where I was able to train to use it. I attended courses in Autocad customisation in my own time and 3D in order to learn how to fully utilise the software.
my time with Kvaerner I worked on various modules at
various stages. I spent time in Kvaerners' Scotland yard in the 'Load out & Design' office, drafting
load-out drawings and lifting frames. I also spent some time at Kvaerners' '
systems became more prevalent, Kvaerner introduced
PDMS to the projects offices. I travelled to
in 1999 the Kvaerner closed the Teesside yard as the demand for offshore modules entered decline. It was then that I moved into structural detailing, however, I did return to oil & gas work in 2001 working for Ken Home Engineering where I used PDMS on the Magnus upgrade project.
BP - Andrew
Conoco - Britannia
Conoco - Britannia – During Construction on Teesside
ETAP - Mungo
Esso - Jotun
BP - Magnus
Shell - Nelson
Statoil - Snorre B
Texaco - Captain
Amerada Hess - Triton - Teesside
Norsk Hydro - Troll Olje
Norsk Hydro - Troll Olje – Load Out at Teesside