Tool and Die Makers

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About the Job

Analyze specifications, lay out metal stock, set up and operate machine tools, and fit and assemble parts to make and repair dies, cutting tools, jigs, fixtures, gauges, and machinists' hand tools.

It is also Called

  • Wire Drawing Die Maker
  • Trim Die Maker
  • Toolsmith
  • Toolmaker Grade Three
  • Toolmaker A
  • Toolmaker
  • Tool/Die Maker
  • Tool Trouble Shooter
  • Tool Setter Apprentice
  • Tool Salvage Worker
View All

What They Do

  • Develop and design new tools and dies, using computer-aided design software.
  • Cut, shape, and trim blanks or blocks to specified lengths or shapes, using power saws, power shears, rules, and hand tools.
  • Set pyrometer controls of heat-treating furnaces and feed or place parts, tools, or assemblies into furnaces to harden.
  • Set up and operate drill presses to drill and tap holes in parts for assembly.
  • Measure, mark, and scribe metal or plastic stock to lay out machining, using instruments such as protractors, micrometers, scribes, or rulers.
  • Design jigs, fixtures, and templates for use as work aids in the fabrication of parts or products.
  • Smooth and polish flat and contoured surfaces of parts or tools, using scrapers, abrasive stones, files, emery cloths, or power grinders.
  • Lift, position, and secure machined parts on surface plates or worktables, using hoists, vises, v-blocks, or angle plates.
  • File, grind, shim, and adjust different parts to properly fit them together.
  • Select metals to be used from a range of metals and alloys, based on properties such as hardness or heat tolerance.

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 Working Conditions and Independence in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • 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 and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • 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.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Equipment Selection - Determining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.

Education Required

Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.

Wages

In 2017, the average annual wage in Pennsylvania was $50,050 with most people making between $33,790 and $65,260

Outlook

0.00%
avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 4,360 people in Pennsylvania. It is projected that there will be 4,140 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 0 openings due to growth and about 20 replacement openings for approximately 20 total annual openings.



Pennsylvania Department of Education