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What You Need to Know About Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders

Position Description Set up, operate, or tend milling or planing machines to mill, plane, shape, groove, or profile metal or plastic work pieces.

What do Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders do On a Daily Basis?

  • Verify alignment of workpieces on machines, using measuring instruments, such as rules, gauges, or calipers.
  • Move cutters or material manually or by turning handwheels, or engage automatic feeding mechanisms to mill workpieces to specifications.
  • Move controls to set cutting specifications, to position cutting tools and workpieces in relation to each other, and to start machines.
  • Mount attachments and tools, such as pantographs, engravers, or routers to perform other operations, such as drilling or boring.
  • Position and secure workpieces on machines, using holding devices, measuring instruments, hand tools, and hoists.
  • Select cutting speeds, feed rates, and depths of cuts, applying knowledge of metal properties and shop mathematics.

Things a Milling & Planing Machine Operator Should Know How to Do

Below is a list of the skills most Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine 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.

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.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Other Milling & Planing Machine Operator Job Titles

  • Plastic Thread Milling Machine Setup Operator
  • Gear Roller
  • Rolling Mill Operator
  • Milling Machine Set-Up Operator
  • Tooth Cutter

Are There Job Opportunities for Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 17,600 jobs in the United States for Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic.

Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setter, Operator, or Tender jobs are decreasing by a rate of -19.3%. This means the total job opportunities are shrinking. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a loss of -3,400 jobs for Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 1,300 job openings in this field each year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic are Arkansas, Louisiana, and Maryland.

Watch out if you plan on working in California, Ohio, or Michigan. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Milling & Planing Machine Operator Average Salary

The salary for Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic ranges between about $26,210 and $63,400 a year. The median salary for this occupation is $43,590.

Salary Ranges for Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders

How much do Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic make in different U.S. states?

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

Connecticut

$55,780

Massachusetts

$51,670

New Jersey

$49,770

Michigan

$48,080

Tennessee

$47,970

Alabama

$47,000

Pennsylvania

$46,700

Kansas

$46,240

Ohio

$45,710

Arizona

$45,160

Colorado

$45,100

Georgia

$44,860

Arkansas

$44,440

New York

$43,980

Rhode Island

$43,750

Louisiana

$43,550

Wisconsin

$43,060

California

$42,690

Kentucky

$42,290

Minnesota

$42,130

Illinois

$41,240

Florida

$40,850

West Virginia

$40,710

Texas

$40,230

Nebraska

$40,090

Maryland

$39,890

Indiana

$39,720

Iowa

$39,530

Vermont

$38,560

Missouri

$37,710

North Carolina

$36,650

New Hampshire

$36,120

Virginia

$35,930

Mississippi

$34,990

Oklahoma

$34,060

Utah

$33,760

Idaho

$33,270

South Carolina

$31,370

What Tools & Technology do Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders Use?

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

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Office
  • Vero Software Alphacam
  • Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Extensible markup language XML
  • SmartCAMcnc SmartCAM
  • Siemens PLM Software Solid Edge

How to Become a Milling & Planing Machine Operator

What education is needed to be a Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setter, Operator, or Tender?

Milling & Planing Machine Operator Degree Level

How many years of work experience do I need?

Milling & Planing Machine Operator Work Experience

Where do Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders Work?

Milling & Planing Machine Operator Sectors

Those interested in being a Metal and Plastic Milling and Planing Machine Setter, Operator, or Tender may also be interested in:

  • Insulation Workers, Floor, Ceiling, and Wall
  • Mine Shuttle Car Operators

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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