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Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender

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

Occupation Description 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.

What Do Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders Do On a Daily Basis?

  • Move controls to set cutting speeds and depths and feed rates, and to position tools in relation to workpieces.
  • Adjust machine controls and change tool settings to keep dimensions within specified tolerances.
  • 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.
  • Study blueprints, layouts or charts, and job orders for information on specifications and tooling instructions, and to determine material requirements and operational sequences.
  • Crank machines through cycles, stopping to adjust tool positions and machine controls to ensure specified timing, clearances, and tolerances.

Lathe & Turning Machine Tool Operator Required Skills

Below is a list of the skills most Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders say are important on the job.

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.

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.

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

  • Computer Numerical Control Operator (CNC Operator)
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  • Single Spindle Screw Machine Set-Up Operator
  • Balance Recesser
  • Bullard Machine Operator

What Kind of Lathe & Turning Machine Tool Operator Job Opportunities Are There?

In the United States, there were 33,700 jobs for Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender in 2016. There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender. The BLS estimates 2,900 yearly job openings in this field.

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The states with the most job growth for Lathe & Turning Machine Tool Operator are Alabama, Utah, and Texas. Watch out if you plan on working in Delaware, West Virginia, or Maine. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

What is the Average Salary of a Lathe & Turning Machine Tool Operator

Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders make between $26,000 and $59,960 a year.

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Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders who work in Massachusetts, Oregon, or Arizona, make the highest salaries.

How much do Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders make in different U.S. states?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $35,440
Arizona $47,100
Arkansas $36,310
California $40,280
Colorado $34,110
Connecticut $46,110
Florida $37,560
Georgia $36,310
Illinois $42,540
Indiana $41,180
Iowa $41,340
Kansas $39,560
Kentucky $43,950
Louisiana $43,650
Maine $33,760
Maryland $36,060
Massachusetts $50,760
Michigan $38,830
Minnesota $41,440
Mississippi $34,760
Missouri $42,720
Montana $31,790
Nebraska $39,500
Nevada $41,430
New Hampshire $38,980
New Jersey $44,030
New York $40,720
North Carolina $47,200
Ohio $40,190
Oklahoma $41,100
Oregon $54,150
Pennsylvania $41,390
Rhode Island $44,830
South Carolina $45,310
South Dakota $37,310
Tennessee $36,040
Texas $40,200
Utah $47,130
Vermont $38,570
Virginia $38,470
Washington $45,070
West Virginia $42,270
Wisconsin $41,710

What Tools do Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders Use?

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders may use on a daily basis:

  • Inventory tracking software
  • G-code
  • M-code
  • Autodesk HSMWorks

Becoming a Lathe & Turning Machine Tool Operator

What kind of Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender requirements are there?

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How Long Does it Take to Become a Lathe & Turning Machine Tool Operator?

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

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Below are examples of industries where Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders work:

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You May Also Be Interested In…

Those thinking about becoming a Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender might also be interested in the following careers:

Career changers with experience as a Metal and Plastic Lathe and Turning Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender sometimes find work in one of the following fields:

References:

Image Credit: US Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class John Linzmeier via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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