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Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender

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What Does it Take to Be a Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender?

Job Description: Set up, operate, or tend grinding and related tools that remove excess material or burrs from surfaces, sharpen edges or corners, or buff, hone, or polish metal or plastic work pieces.

Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator Responsibilities

  • Maintain stocks of machine parts and machining tools.
  • Select machine tooling to be used, using knowledge of machine and production requirements.
  • Inspect or measure finished workpieces to determine conformance to specifications, using measuring instruments, such as gauges or micrometers.
  • Observe machine operations to detect any problems, making necessary adjustments to correct problems.
  • Activate machine start-up switches to grind, lap, hone, debar, shear, or cut workpieces, according to specifications.
  • Study blueprints, work orders, or machining instructions to determine product specifications, tool requirements, and operational sequences.

Skills Needed to be a Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator

These are the skills Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders say are the most useful in their careers:

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.

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.

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

Troubleshooting: Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.

  • Polisher and Buffer
  • Buffing Machine Tender
  • CNC Operator (Computer Numerically Controlled Operator)
  • Burr Bench Hand
  • Nicking Machine Operator

Job Outlook for Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders

There were about 76,200 jobs for Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender in 2016 (in the United States). There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender. There will be an estimated 6,800 positions for Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator are Idaho, North Dakota, and Arizona. Watch out if you plan on working in Vermont, Colorado, or Kansas. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Salary for a Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator

Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders make between $23,960 and $52,170 a year.

Salary Ranges for Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders

Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders who work in Maine, Oregon, or Maryland, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $34,190
Arizona $39,180
Arkansas $34,910
California $34,580
Colorado $32,840
Connecticut $43,350
Delaware $28,230
Florida $32,890
Georgia $34,710
Idaho $28,540
Illinois $38,400
Indiana $37,270
Iowa $35,740
Kansas $35,770
Kentucky $37,440
Louisiana $41,320
Maine $42,950
Maryland $43,200
Massachusetts $41,290
Michigan $37,070
Minnesota $38,390
Mississippi $40,840
Missouri $40,800
Montana $29,350
Nebraska $39,630
Nevada $32,300
New Hampshire $34,950
New Jersey $36,900
New Mexico $26,610
New York $39,010
North Carolina $37,840
North Dakota $40,060
Ohio $34,980
Oklahoma $32,240
Oregon $42,990
Pennsylvania $38,780
Rhode Island $36,110
South Carolina $39,880
South Dakota $35,350
Tennessee $36,870
Texas $32,710
Utah $34,530
Vermont $38,550
Virginia $31,030
Washington $37,890
West Virginia $31,070
Wisconsin $36,800
Wyoming $42,570

Tools & Technologies Used by Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • SAP
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Mazak Mazatrol SMART CNC

Becoming a Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator

What education or degrees do I need to become a Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender?

Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator Degree Level

How Long Does it Take to Become a Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator?

Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator Work Experience

Where Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setters, Operators, and Tenders Are Employed

Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator Sectors

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

Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, & Buffing Machine Tool Operator Industries

Other Jobs You May be Interested In

Those interested in being a Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing Machine Tool Setter, Operator, or Tender may also be interested in:

Career changers with experience as a Metal and Plastic Grinding, Lapping, Polishing, and Buffing 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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