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Extruding, Forming, Pressing, and Compacting Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders
SOC Code: 51-9041.00

Set up, operate, or tend machines, such as glass forming machines, plodder machines, and tuber machines, to shape and form products, such as glassware, food, rubber, soap, brick, tile, clay, wax, tobacco, or cosmetics.

Sample of reported job titles: Extruder Operator, Extrusion Operator, Glass Forming Crew Member, Job Change Crew Member, Machine Operator, Operator, Press Operator, Production Operator, Tuber Operator, Upkeep Mechanic

Tasks

  • Adjust machine components to regulate speeds, pressures, and temperatures, and amounts, dimensions, and flow of materials or ingredients.
  • Press control buttons to activate machinery and equipment.
  • Examine, measure, and weigh materials or products to verify conformance to standards, using measuring devices such as templates, micrometers, or scales.
  • Monitor machine operations and observe lights and gauges to detect malfunctions.
  • Clear jams, and remove defective or substandard materials or products.
  • Notify supervisors when extruded filaments fail to meet standards.
  • Record and maintain production data, such as meter readings, and quantities, types, and dimensions of materials produced.
  • Review work orders, specifications, or instructions to determine materials, ingredients, procedures, components, settings, and adjustments for extruding, forming, pressing, or compacting machines.
  • Turn controls to adjust machine functions, such as regulating air pressure, creating vacuums, and adjusting coolant flow.
  • Clean dies, arbors, compression chambers, and molds, using swabs, sponges, or air hoses.
  • Synchronize speeds of sections of machines when producing products involving several steps or processes.
  • Move materials, supplies, components, and finished products between storage and work areas, using work aids such as racks, hoists, and handtrucks.
  • Activate machines to shape or form products, such as candy bars, light bulbs, balloons, or insulation panels.
  • Select and install machine components, such as dies, molds, and cutters, according to specifications, using hand tools and measuring devices.
  • Send product samples to laboratories for analysis.
  • Couple air and gas lines to machines to maintain plasticity of material and to regulate solidification of final products.
  • Pour, scoop, or dump specified ingredients, metal assemblies, or mixtures into sections of machine prior to starting machines.
  • Measure, mix, cut, shape, soften, and join materials and ingredients, such as powder, cornmeal, or rubber to prepare them for machine processing.
  • Remove materials or products from molds or from extruding, forming, pressing, or compacting machines, and stack or store them for additional processing.
  • Feed products into machines by hand or conveyor.
  • Measure arbors and dies to verify sizes specified on work tickets.
  • Thread extruded strips through water tanks and hold-down bars, or attach strands to wires and draw them through tubes.
  • Complete work tickets, and place them with products.
  • Disassemble equipment to repair it or to replace parts, such as nozzles, punches, and filters.
  • Remove molds, mold components, and feeder tubes from machinery after production is complete.
  • Swab molds with solutions to prevent products from sticking.
  • Ignite burners to preheat products, or use torches to apply heat.
  • Install, align, and adjust neck rings, press plungers, and feeder tubes.

Technology Skills

  • Data base user interface and query software - Data entry software
  • Enterprise resource planning ERP software - SAP
  • Materials requirements planning logistics and supply chain software - Production scheduling software
  • Office suite software - Microsoft Office
  • Spreadsheet software - Microsoft Excel
  • Word processing software - Microsoft Word

Tools Used

  • Air dryers - Hopper dryers
  • Air hoses
  • Bench scales - Digital bench scales
  • Blow torch - Blow torches
  • Burners
  • Calipers - Digital calipers
  • Cement or ceramic or glass or similar material molding machines - Compacting machines; Forming machines; Glass forming machines
  • Cutting machines - Slitters
  • Extruders - Computer numerically controlled CNC Extruders; Single screw extruders; Tuber machines; Twin-barrel extrusion machines (see all 7 examples)
  • Forklifts - Wheeled forklifts
  • Forming machine - Sheeters
  • Lifts - Power lifts
  • Micrometers - Digital micrometers; Laser micrometers
  • Power grinders - Scrap grinders; Trim grinders
  • Presses - Pressing machines
  • Pressure indicators - Pressure gauges
  • Punching pliers - Core cutters
  • Razor knives - Trim knives
  • Rulers - Precision rulers
  • Templates - Machine templates
  • Vulcanizing machines - Vulcanizer presses
  • Winding or reeling or spooling machines - Film winders; Trim winders
  • Wrapping machinery - High speed wrapping machines

Knowledge

  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
  • 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.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Troubleshooting - Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.

Abilities

  • 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.
  • Rate Control - The ability to time your movements or the movement of a piece of equipment in anticipation of changes in the speed and/or direction of a moving object or scene.
  • Reaction Time - The ability to quickly respond (with the hand, finger, or foot) to a signal (sound, light, picture) when it appears.
  • 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.
  • 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).
  • 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.
  • Auditory Attention - The ability to focus on a single source of sound in the presence of other distracting sounds.
  • Control Precision - The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
  • Far Vision - The ability to see details at a distance.
  • 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.
  • 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).
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Stamina - The ability to exert yourself physically over long periods of time without getting winded or out of breath.
  • Static Strength - The ability to exert maximum muscle force to lift, push, pull, or carry objects.
  • 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.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • 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.
  • 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).
  • 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.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.

Interests

  • Interest code: RCI
    • 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.
    • 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.

Work Context

  • Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets - 100% responded “Every day.”
  • Spend Time Standing - 65% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
  • Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable - 85% responded “Every day.”
  • Face-to-Face Discussions - 61% responded “Every day.”
  • Pace Determined by Speed of Equipment - 51% responded “Very important.”
  • Exposed to Contaminants - 79% responded “Every day.”
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate - 67% responded “Very important.”
  • Work With Work Group or Team - 60% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls - 49% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
  • Contact With Others - 47% responded “Constant contact with others.”
  • Very Hot or Cold Temperatures - 63% responded “Every day.”
  • Time Pressure - 44% responded “Every day.”
  • Frequency of Decision Making - 54% responded “Every day.”
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks - 34% responded “Important.”
  • Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings - 54% responded “Every day.”
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results - 31% responded “Very important results.”
  • Physical Proximity - 53% responded “Moderately close (at arm's length).”
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety - 46% responded “Very high responsibility.”
  • Freedom to Make Decisions - 42% responded “Some freedom.”
  • Spend Time Walking and Running - 32% responded “More than half the time.”
  • Duration of Typical Work Week - 74% responded “40 hours.”
  • Exposed to Hazardous Equipment - 58% responded “Every day.”
  • Responsibility for Outcomes and Results - 29% responded “Very high responsibility.”
  • Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled - 58% responded “Every day.”
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions - 29% responded “Less than half the time.”
  • Degree of Automation - 58% responded “Moderately automated.”
  • Consequence of Error - 26% responded “Extremely serious.”
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work - 36% responded “Some freedom.”
  • Coordinate or Lead Others - 35% responded “Important.”
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People - 30% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled - 48% responded “Every day.”

Education

Percentage of RespondentsEducation Level Required
78%High school diploma or equivalent
9%Post-secondary certificate
8%Some college, no degree

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.
  • Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
  • 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.
  • Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • Achievement/Effort - Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
  • Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
  • Concern for Others - Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
  • Social Orientation - Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
  • Leadership - Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
  • 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.

Work Values

  • 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.
  • Independence - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
  • 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.

Wages & Trends

  • Median wages (2017)
    • $16.19 hourly, $33,680 annual
  • Employment (2016)
    • 71,000 employees
  • Projected growth (2016-2026)
    • Decline (-2% or lower)
  • Projected job openings (2016-2026)
    • 7,900

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