Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

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About the Job

Set up, operate, or tend lathe and turning machines to turn, bore, thread, form, or face metal or plastic materials, such as wire, rod, or bar stock.

It is also Called

  • Winding Lathe Operator
  • Vertical Multiple Spindle Chucking Machine Set-Up Operator
  • Vertical Lathe Operator
  • V-Groove Cutter
  • Turret Lathe Set Up Operator
  • Turret Lathe Operator
  • Turning Machine Operator
  • Turn Operator
  • Tumble Tailstock Turret Lathe Operator
  • Tool Turret Lathe Set-Up Operator
View All

What They Do

  • Mount attachments, such as relieving or tracing attachments, to perform operations, such as duplicating contours of templates or trimming workpieces.
  • Turn valve handles to direct the flow of coolant onto work areas or to coat disks with spinning compounds.
  • Move toolholders manually or by turning handwheels, or engage automatic feeding mechanisms to feed tools to and along workpieces.
  • Lift metal stock or workpieces manually or using hoists, and position and secure them in machines, using fasteners and hand tools.
  • Compute unspecified dimensions and machine settings, using knowledge of metal properties and shop mathematics.
  • Install holding fixtures, cams, gears, and stops to control stock and tool movement, using hand tools, power tools, and measuring instruments.
  • Refill, change, and monitor the level of fluids, such as oil and coolant, in machines.
  • Move controls to set cutting speeds and depths and feed rates, and to position tools in relation to workpieces.
  • Select cutting tools and tooling instructions, according to written specifications or knowledge of metal properties and shop mathematics.
  • Study blueprints, layouts or charts, and job orders for information on specifications and tooling instructions, and to determine material requirements and operational sequences.

Interests

People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: RIC.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Realistic interests, but also prefer Investigative and Conventional environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Support, but also value Achievement and Independence in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.

Education Required

These occupations usually require a high school diploma.

Wages

In 2017, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $38,830 with most people making between $26,750 and $51,880

Outlook

0.00%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 2,680 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 2,200 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 0 openings due to growth and about 70 replacement openings for approximately 70 total annual openings.



Pennsylvania Department of Education