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Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setter, Operator, or Tender

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What Does it Take to Be a Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setter, Operator, or Tender?

Example of Cutting, Punching, & Press Machine Operator Job Set up, operate, or tend machines to saw, cut, shear, slit, punch, crimp, notch, bend, or straighten metal or plastic material.

Daily Life Of a Cutting, Punching, & Press Machine Operator

  • Scribe reference lines on workpieces as guides for cutting operations, according to blueprints, templates, sample parts, or specifications.
  • Turn valves to start flow of coolant against cutting areas or to start airflow that blows cuttings away from kerfs.
  • Install, align, and lock specified punches, dies, cutting blades, or other fixtures in rams or beds of machines, using gauges, templates, feelers, shims, and hand tools.
  • Set blade tensions, heights, and angles to perform prescribed cuts, using wrenches.
  • Clean work area.
  • Mark identifying data on workpieces.

What Every Cutting, Punching, & Press Machine Operator Should Know

When polled, Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders say the following skills are most frequently used in their jobs:

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.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

  • Machine Operator Slitter Technician
  • Die Cutter
  • Zipper Cutter
  • Operator
  • Machine Operator

Is There Going to be Demand for Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders?

There were about 192,700 jobs for Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setter, Operator, or Tender in 2016 (in the United States). There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setter, Operator, or Tender. There will be an estimated 18,900 positions for Cutting, Punching, & Press Machine Operator per year.

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The states with the most job growth for Cutting, Punching, & Press Machine Operator are Utah, North Dakota, and Georgia. Watch out if you plan on working in Vermont, Colorado, or New Hampshire. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

What is the Average Salary of a Cutting, Punching, & Press Machine Operator

The salary for Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders ranges between about $23,440 and $52,270 a year.

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Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders who work in Wyoming, Minnesota, or Maryland, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $32,580
Alaska $38,340
Arizona $36,540
Arkansas $35,690
California $37,430
Colorado $37,820
Connecticut $38,250
Delaware $33,990
Florida $31,860
Georgia $31,460
Idaho $30,910
Illinois $36,340
Indiana $33,940
Iowa $36,060
Kansas $33,680
Kentucky $40,270
Louisiana $37,840
Maine $39,000
Maryland $42,770
Massachusetts $41,090
Michigan $37,940
Minnesota $43,200
Mississippi $32,210
Missouri $36,920
Montana $37,050
Nebraska $37,360
Nevada $32,360
New Hampshire $36,850
New Jersey $34,850
New Mexico $29,760
New York $40,240
North Carolina $31,620
North Dakota $35,640
Ohio $35,590
Oklahoma $34,490
Oregon $38,960
Pennsylvania $37,360
Rhode Island $32,810
South Carolina $35,690
South Dakota $36,660
Tennessee $33,420
Texas $32,650
Utah $35,910
Vermont $36,360
Virginia $36,610
Washington $44,670
West Virginia $36,520
Wisconsin $38,970
Wyoming $43,330

What Tools do Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders Use?

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

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • SAP
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Computerized numerical control CNC software
  • Automated inventory software

Becoming a Cutting, Punching, & Press Machine Operator

Individuals working as a Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setter, Operator, or Tender have obtained the following education levels:

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How many years of work experience do I need?

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Who Employs Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders?

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The table below shows some of the most common industries where those employed in this career field work.

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Career changers with experience as a Metal and Plastic Cutting, Punching, and Press Machine 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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