"A lot of people can weld, but can you make that perfect weld, every time, every day, ten hours a day, month after month after month?"
-- Jimmy Pedigo, Local 798 welder
An electrode is a piece of conductive metal that will spark, or 'arc,' when activated with electrical current. The arc permanently joins pipeline segments by melting both the pipeline surface and the electrode itself. You'll go through a lot of electrodes in your ten- to twelve-hour workday.