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Cabinetmakers and Bench Carpenters
SOC Code: 51-7011.00

Cut, shape, and assemble wooden articles or set up and operate a variety of woodworking machines, such as power saws, jointers, and mortisers to surface, cut, or shape lumber or to fabricate parts for wood products.

Sample of reported job titles: Cabinet Assembler, Cabinet Builder, Cabinet Installer, Cabinetmaker, Cutter, Double End Tenon Operator, Frame Builder, Framer, Machine Operator, Woodworker


  • Verify dimensions or check the quality or fit of pieces to ensure adherence to specifications.
  • Produce or assemble components of articles, such as store fixtures, office equipment, cabinets, or high-grade furniture.
  • Measure and mark dimensions of parts on paper or lumber stock prior to cutting, following blueprints, to ensure a tight fit and quality product.
  • Set up or operate machines, including power saws, jointers, mortisers, tenoners, molders, or shapers, to cut, mold, or shape woodstock or wood substitutes.
  • Establish the specifications of articles to be constructed or repaired or plan the methods or operations for shaping or assembling parts, based on blueprints, drawings, diagrams, or oral or written instructions.
  • Attach parts or subassemblies together to form completed units, using glue, dowels, nails, screws, or clamps.
  • Reinforce joints with nails or other fasteners to prepare articles for finishing.
  • Install hardware, such as hinges, handles, catches, or drawer pulls, using hand tools.
  • Trim, sand, or scrape surfaces or joints to prepare articles for finishing.
  • Match materials for color, grain, or texture, giving attention to knots or other features of the wood.
  • Cut timber to the right size and shape and trim parts of joints to ensure a snug fit, using hand tools, such as planes, chisels, or wood files.
  • Perform final touch-ups with sandpaper or steel wool.
  • Bore holes for insertion of screws or dowels, by hand or using boring machines.
  • Repair or alter wooden furniture, cabinetry, fixtures, paneling, or other pieces.
  • Estimate the amounts, types, or costs of needed materials.
  • Dip, brush, or spray assembled articles with protective or decorative finishes, such as stain, varnish, paint, or lacquer.
  • Draw up detailed specifications and discuss projects with customers.
  • Design furniture, using computer-aided drawing programs.
  • Apply Masonite, formica, or vinyl surfacing materials.
  • Program computers to operate machinery.

Technology Skills

  • Computer aided design CAD software - Autodesk AutoCAD
  • Data base user interface and query software - Data entry software
  • Electronic mail software - Microsoft Outlook
  • Facilities management software - Computerized maintenance management system CMMS
  • Operating system software - Microsoft Windows
  • Project management software - Computer estimation software
  • Spreadsheet software - Microsoft Excel

Tools Used

  • Adjustable wrenches - Adjustable hand wrenches
  • Augers - Hand augers
  • Automatic lathe or chucking machine - Wood lathes
  • Awls
  • Banders - Edge banders
  • Bandsaw wheel - Bandsaws
  • Bastard cut file - Bastard flat files
  • Belt sander - Belt sanders
  • Bench dog - Bench dogs
  • Bench vises
  • Bevels - T-bevels
  • Biscuit jointers - Biscuit joiners; Biscuit joining machines; Plate jointers
  • Blade sharpener - Tool sharpeners
  • Boring machines - Line borers; Minipresses
  • C clamps - Locking C-clamps
  • Calipers - Dial calipers; Slide calipers
  • Cheesegrater file - Wood files
  • Claw hammer - Claw hammers
  • Cold press - Cold presses; Hot presses
  • Compasses - Angle dividers; Dividers; Drafting compasses; Trammel points
  • Cutting machines - Tenoners
  • Drill press or radial drill - Radial drills
  • Drilling machines - Drill presses; Single spindle drill presses
  • Ear plugs - Protective ear plugs
  • Goggles - Safety goggles
  • Grinding machines - Profile grinders
  • Grinding wheels - Water wheels
  • Hand clamps - Bar clamps; Cam clamps; Quick-release clamps; Wedge clamps (see all 6 examples)
  • Hand or push drill - Braces and bits
  • Hold down clamps - Band clamps; Edging clamps; Parallel jaw clamps; Spring clamps
  • Levels - Precision levels
  • Locking pliers
  • Mallets
  • Metal markers or holders - Marking gauges
  • Micrometers - Digital micrometers
  • Mill saw file - Mill files
  • Milling machines - Computerized numerical control CNC machining centers; Computerized numerical control CNC routers
  • Miter saw - Chop saws
  • Moisture meters
  • Paint application system - Lacquer booths
  • Paint brushes - Paint application brushes
  • Paint rollers - Paint application rollers
  • Paint sprayers - Paint spray guns
  • Personal computers
  • Planes - Block planes; Jointer planes; Shapers; Smooth planes (see all 9 examples)
  • Plumb bobs
  • Pneumatic nail drivers - Pneumatic nail guns
  • Positioning jig - Adjustable jigs; Case clamps
  • Power drills
  • Power grinders - Bench grinders
  • Power nail guns - Nail guns; Pin nailers
  • Power planes - Jointers; Power planers; Thickness planers
  • Power routers - Panel routers; Plunge routers; Portable routers; Table routers (see all 6 examples)
  • Power sanders - Disk sanders; Random orbital sanders
  • Power saws - Circular saws; Reciprocating saws; Rip saws; Sliding panel saws (see all 11 examples)
  • Power screwguns
  • Power trimmers - Profile molders
  • Punches or nail sets or drifts - Metal punches
  • Putty knives - Heated putty knives
  • Razor knives - Scrapers
  • Rulers - Steel rules
  • Safety glasses
  • Sanding blocks - Hand sanding blocks
  • Sanding machines - Edge sanders; Wide belt sanders
  • Sawing machines - Miter saws
  • Saws - Back saws; Dovetail saws; Tenon saws; Veneer saws (see all 5 examples)
  • Screwdrivers - Phillips head screwdrivers; Straight screwdrivers
  • Scribers - Marking knives
  • Scroll saw - Scroll saws
  • Shears - Metal shears
  • Squares - Combination squares; Layout squares; Machinists' squares; Set squares
  • Staple guns - Pneumatic staplers
  • T squares - T-squares
  • Tape measures - Measuring tapes
  • Templates
  • Tracer or duplicating or contouring lathe - Bowl lathes; Mini lathes
  • Utility knives - Burn-in knives; Draw knives
  • Viscosimeters - Viscosity cups
  • Wood chisels - Morticers; Parting tools; Roughing gouges; Skew chisels (see all 8 examples)


  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Building and Construction - Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • 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.


  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Equipment Selection - Determining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Operations Analysis - Analyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Time Management - Managing one's own time and the time of others.
  • Troubleshooting - Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.


  • 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.
  • Finger Dexterity - The ability to make precisely coordinated movements of the fingers of one or both hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble very small objects.
  • Manual Dexterity - The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Control Precision - The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
  • Multilimb Coordination - The ability to coordinate two or more limbs (for example, two arms, two legs, or one leg and one arm) while sitting, standing, or lying down. It does not involve performing the activities while the whole body is in motion.
  • Trunk Strength - The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
  • Visualization - The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
  • 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.
  • Reaction Time - The ability to quickly respond (with the hand, finger, or foot) to a signal (sound, light, picture) when it appears.
  • Static Strength - The ability to exert maximum muscle force to lift, push, pull, or carry objects.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • 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).
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Auditory Attention - The ability to focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds.
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Depth Perception - The ability to judge which of several objects is closer or farther away from you, or to judge the distance between you and an object.
  • Extent Flexibility - The ability to bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
  • Far Vision - The ability to see details at a distance.
  • Hearing Sensitivity - The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • 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.
  • Perceptual Speed - The ability to quickly and accurately compare similarities and differences among sets of letters, numbers, objects, pictures, or patterns. The things to be compared may be presented at the same time or one after the other. This ability also includes comparing a presented object with a remembered object.
  • Response Orientation - The ability to choose quickly between two or more movements in response to two or more different signals (lights, sounds, pictures). It includes the speed with which the correct response is started with the hand, foot, or other body part.
  • Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.


  • Interest code: RC
    • 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.
    • 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.

Work Context

  • Face-to-Face Discussions - 91% responded “Every day.”
  • Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets - 76% responded “Every day.”
  • Spend Time Standing - 76% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
  • Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled - 63% responded “Every day.”
  • Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls - 55% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
  • Exposed to Hazardous Equipment - 70% responded “Every day.”
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate - 39% responded “Very important.”
  • Time Pressure - 39% responded “Every day.”
  • Contact With Others - 52% responded “Constant contact with others.”
  • Work With Work Group or Team - 48% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Exposed to Contaminants - 46% responded “Every day.”
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results - 38% responded “Important results.”
  • Freedom to Make Decisions - 51% responded “Some freedom.”
  • Frequency of Decision Making - 38% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
  • Duration of Typical Work Week - 39% responded “More than 40 hours.”
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work - 50% responded “Limited freedom.”
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions - 47% responded “About half the time.”
  • Spend Time Bending or Twisting the Body - 32% responded “Less than half the time.”
  • Coordinate or Lead Others - 33% responded “Important.”
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety - 31% responded “Very high responsibility.”
  • Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable - 37% responded “Every day.”
  • Spend Time Walking and Running - 39% responded “Less than half the time.”
  • Deal With External Customers - 41% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People - 46% responded “Every day.”
  • Physical Proximity - 50% responded “Moderately close (at arm's length).”
  • Level of Competition - 29% responded “Moderately competitive.”


Percentage of RespondentsEducation Level Required
62%High school diploma or equivalent
27%Post-secondary certificate
11%Less than high school diploma

Work Styles

  • Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
  • Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
  • 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.
  • Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • 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.
  • Achievement/Effort - Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
  • Analytical Thinking - Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.

Work Values

  • Relationships - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
  • Support - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
  • Achievement - Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.

Wages & Trends

  • Median wages (2017)
    • $16.31 hourly, $33,920 annual
  • Employment (2016)
    • 109,000 employees
  • Projected growth (2016-2026)
    • Slower than average (2% to 4%)
  • Projected job openings (2016-2026)
    • 11,500

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