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Hand Cutter or Trimmer

All About Hand Cutters and Trimmers

Position Description Use hand tools or hand-held power tools to cut and trim a variety of manufactured items, such as carpet, fabric, stone, glass, or rubber.

Daily Life Of a Hand Cutter or Trimmer

  • Transport items to work or storage areas, using carts.
  • Separate materials or products according to size, weight, type, condition, color, or shade.
  • Mark identification numbers, trademarks, grades, marketing data, sizes, or model numbers on products.
  • Mark or discard items with defects such as spots, stains, scars, snags, chips, scratches, or unacceptable shapes or finishes.
  • Cut, shape, and trim materials, such as textiles, food, glass, stone, and metal, using knives, scissors, and other hand tools, portable power tools, or bench-mounted tools.
  • Route items to provide cutouts for parts, using portable routers, grinders, and hand tools.

Qualities of a Hand Cutter or Trimmer

When polled, Hand Cutters and Trimmers say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

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.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Time Management: Managing one’s own time and the time of others.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

  • Shaper
  • Production Cloth Cutter
  • Banana Room Cutter
  • Scarrer
  • Lapper

Are There Job Opportunities for Hand Cutters and Trimmers?

There were about 14,700 jobs for Hand Cutter or Trimmer in 2016 (in the United States). There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Hand Cutter or Trimmer. The BLS estimates 1,400 yearly job openings in this field.


The states with the most job growth for Hand Cutter or Trimmer are Utah, Arizona, and Nebraska. Watch out if you plan on working in Kentucky, New York, or Hawaii. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Hand Cutters and Trimmers Salary

The salary for Hand Cutters and Trimmers ranges between about $20,740 and $46,790 a year.


Hand Cutters and Trimmers who work in Hawaii, New Mexico, or North Carolina, make the highest salaries.

How much do Hand Cutters and Trimmers make in different U.S. states?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $26,540
Arizona $31,720
California $31,940
Colorado $30,920
Florida $31,120
Georgia $30,970
Hawaii $40,350
Idaho $33,940
Illinois $30,480
Indiana $29,810
Iowa $32,340
Kansas $32,100
Kentucky $26,740
Louisiana $28,780
Maine $30,200
Massachusetts $31,800
Michigan $30,680
Minnesota $33,090
Mississippi $32,320
Missouri $32,460
Nebraska $33,030
Nevada $22,830
New Hampshire $26,540
New Jersey $25,680
New Mexico $34,950
New York $41,310
North Carolina $36,710
Ohio $27,230
Oklahoma $29,770
Oregon $32,890
Pennsylvania $24,990
South Carolina $28,070
Tennessee $33,200
Texas $28,370
Utah $36,000
Vermont $37,110
Virginia $29,480
Washington $30,510
West Virginia $29,160
Wisconsin $29,740

Tools & Technologies Used by Hand Cutters and Trimmers

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Hand Cutters and Trimmers:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Outlook

How do I Become a Hand Cutter or Trimmer?

What education or degrees do I need to become a Hand Cutter or Trimmer?


How many years of work experience do I need?



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More about our data sources and methodologies.

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