Tool and Die Makers

What they do:

Analyze specifications, lay out metal stock, set up and operate machine tools, and fit and assemble parts to make and repair dies, cutting tools, jigs, fixtures, gauges, and machinists' hand tools.

On the job, you would:

  • Study blueprints, sketches, models, or specifications to plan sequences of operations for fabricating tools, dies, or assemblies.
  • Verify dimensions, alignments, and clearances of finished parts for conformance to specifications, using measuring instruments such as calipers, gauge blocks, micrometers, and dial indicators.
  • Visualize and compute dimensions, sizes, shapes, and tolerances of assemblies, based on specifications.
  • Set up and operate conventional or computer numerically controlled machine tools such as lathes, milling machines, and grinders to cut, bore, grind, or otherwise shape parts to prescribed dimensions and finishes.
  • File, grind, shim, and adjust different parts to properly fit them together.
  • Fit and assemble parts to make, repair, or modify dies, jigs, gauges, and tools, using machine tools and hand tools.
  • Conduct test runs with completed tools or dies to ensure that parts meet specifications, making adjustments as necessary.
  • Inspect finished dies for smoothness, contour conformity, and defects.
  • Smooth and polish flat and contoured surfaces of parts or tools, using scrapers, abrasive stones, files, emery cloths, or power grinders.
  • Lift, position, and secure machined parts on surface plates or worktables, using hoists, vises, v-blocks, or angle plates.

Knowledge

  • Mechanical
  • Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • Design
  • Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • Mathematics
  • Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Production and Processing
  • Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • English Language
  • Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Administration and Management
  • Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

Skills

  • Operation and Control
  • Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • 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.
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Equipment Selection
  • Determining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
  • Critical Thinking
  • Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Active Learning
  • Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
  • Time Management
  • Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

Abilities

  • Visualization
  • The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
  • Near Vision
  • The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Oral Comprehension
  • The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression
  • The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Selective Attention
  • The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
  • Arm-Hand Steadiness
  • The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.
  • Control Precision
  • The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
  • Problem Sensitivity
  • The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Inductive Reasoning
  • The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Information Ordering
  • The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).

Work Activities

  • Controlling Machines and Processes
  • Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
  • Getting Information
  • Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge
  • Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Handling and Moving Objects
  • Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
  • Drafting, Laying Out, and Specifying Technical Devices, Parts, and Equipment
  • Providing documentation, detailed instructions, drawings, or specifications to tell others about how devices, parts, equipment, or structures are to be fabricated, constructed, assembled, modified, maintained, or used.
  • Thinking Creatively
  • Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
  • Interacting With Computers
  • Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events
  • Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Interests

  • Realistic
  • Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
  • Third Interest High-Point
  • Tertiary-Cutoff/Rank Descriptiveness
  • Investigative
  • Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Conventional
  • Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
  • Artistic
  • Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
  • Second Interest High-Point
  • Secondary-Cutoff/Rank Descriptiveness
  • Enterprising
  • Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
  • First Interest High-Point
  • Primary-Rank Descriptiveness
  • Social
  • Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

Work Styles

  • Attention to Detail
  • Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
  • Dependability
  • Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Initiative
  • Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Independence
  • Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
  • Cooperation
  • Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Innovation
  • Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
  • Analytical Thinking
  • Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
  • Concern for Others
  • Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
  • Persistence
  • Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Integrity
  • Job requires being honest and ethical.