Summary Report for:
51-4052.00 - Pourers and Casters, Metal
Operate hand-controlled mechanisms to pour and regulate the flow of molten metal into molds to produce castings or ingots.
Sample of reported job titles: Caster, Caster Operator, Casting Machine Operator, Die Cast Operator (DCO), Direct Chill Caster (DC Caster), Furnace Operator, General Foundry Worker, Iron Pourer, Melter - Caster, Metal Handler
Tasks | Tools & Technology | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Collect samples, or signal workers to sample metal for analysis.
- Pour and regulate the flow of molten metal into molds and forms to produce ingots or other castings, using ladles or hand-controlled mechanisms.
- Read temperature gauges and observe color changes, adjusting furnace flames, torches, or electrical heating units as necessary to melt metal to specifications.
- Examine molds to ensure they are clean, smooth, and properly coated.
- Position equipment such as ladles, grinding wheels, pouring nozzles, or crucibles, or signal other workers to position equipment.
- Skim slag or remove excess metal from ingots or equipment, using hand tools, strainers, rakes, or burners, collecting scrap for recycling.
- Turn valves to circulate water through cores, or spray water on filled molds to cool and solidify metal.
- Add metal to molds to compensate for shrinkage.
- Pull levers to lift ladle stoppers and to allow molten steel to flow into ingot molds to specified heights.
- Load specified amounts of metal and flux into furnaces or clay crucibles.
- Remove solidified steel or slag from pouring nozzles, using long bars or oxygen burners.
- Assemble and embed cores in casting frames, using hand tools and equipment.
- Remove metal ingots or cores from molds, using hand tools, cranes, and chain hoists.
- Transport metal ingots to storage areas, using forklifts.
- Stencil identifying information on ingots and pigs, using special hand tools.
- Repair and maintain metal forms and equipment, using hand tools, sledges, and bars.
Tools & Technology
Tools used in this occupation:
- Bench grinder — Handheld pneumatic grinders
- Bench scales — Precision bench scales
- Blow torch — Acetylene torches
- Cleaning scrapers — Hand scrapers
- Coordinate measuring machines CMM
- Deburring tool — Deburring tools
- Die casting machine — Cold chamber die casting machines; Hot chamber die casting machines
- Ear plugs — Protective ear plugs
- Electric furnace — Electric arc furnaces; Electric tilt furnaces
- Forklifts — Wheeled forklifts
- Foundry ladles — Automatic ladles; Hand ladles
- Foundry molds
- Foundry shovels — Dross hoes; Slag scrappers
- Furnaces — Open-hearth furnaces; Oxygen furnaces
- Go or no go gauge — Go/no-go gauges
- Heat resistant clothing — Heat resistant suits
- Hoists — Chain falls
- Hydraulic extractor — Automatic extractors
- Jib crane — Jib cranes
- Locking pliers — Vise-grip pliers
- Lubricator pump — Lubricant pumpers; Lubricant reciprocators
- Metal band sawing machine — Bandsaws
- Overhead crane — Electric overhead transfer EOT cranes
- Power shears — Power metal shears
- Pyrometers — High temperature thermometers
- Rulers — Depth gauges
- Safety glasses — Protective glasses
- Sledge hammer — Metal sledgehammers
- Tongs — Foundry tongs
- Wire brushes
Technology used in this occupation:
- Production and Processing — Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
- 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.
- Critical Thinking — Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Operation and Control — Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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).
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- 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.
- 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.
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- 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.
- 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.
- Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
- 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.
- Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
- 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).
- 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.
- Visual Color Discrimination — The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.
- Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- 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.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings — Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment — Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
- Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
- Performing General Physical Activities — Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.
- Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
- 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.
- Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information — Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.
- Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment — Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.
- Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People — Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.
Detailed Work Activities
- Mount attachments or tools onto production equipment.
- Collect samples of materials or products for testing.
- Place materials into molds.
- Trim excess material from workpieces.
- Adjust temperature controls of ovens or other heating equipment.
- Apply parting agents or other solutions to molds.
- Signal others to coordinate work activities.
- Adjust equipment controls to regulate coolant flow.
- Monitor instruments to ensure proper production conditions.
- Adjust equipment controls to regulate flow of production materials or products.
- Load materials into production equipment.
- Inspect production equipment.
- Engrave designs, text, or other markings onto materials, workpieces, or products.
- Clean production equipment.
- Skim impurities from molten metal.
- Move products, materials, or equipment between work areas.
- Maintain production or processing equipment.
- Remove workpieces from molds.
- Operate forklifts or other loaders.
- Repair templates, patterns, or molds.
- Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 100% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Contaminants — 95% responded “Every day.”
- Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 96% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 85% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Very Hot or Cold Temperatures — 88% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Hazardous Equipment — 77% responded “Every day.”
- Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled — 85% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings — 76% responded “Every day.”
- Contact With Others — 74% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Exposed to Hazardous Conditions — 70% responded “Every day.”
- Extremely Bright or Inadequate Lighting — 68% responded “Every day.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 61% responded “Every day.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 41% responded “Extremely important.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 64% responded “More than 40 hours.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 49% responded “Extremely important.”
- Pace Determined by Speed of Equipment — 37% responded “Extremely important.”
- Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — 38% responded “Very high responsibility.”
- Wear Specialized Protective or Safety Equipment such as Breathing Apparatus, Safety Harness, Full Protection Suits, or Radiation Protection — 45% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Standing — 41% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 46% responded “More than half the time.”
- Consequence of Error — 43% responded “Extremely serious.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 51% responded “Every day.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 56% responded “Some freedom.”
- Spend Time Walking and Running — 33% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 39% responded “Very important.”
- Spend Time Bending or Twisting the Body — 30% responded “About half the time.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 29% responded “Extremely important.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 31% responded “Some freedom.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 30% responded “Important results.”
- In an Open Vehicle or Equipment — 33% responded “Once a week or more but not every day.”
- Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 34% responded “Moderate responsibility.”
- Physical Proximity — 34% responded “Slightly close (e.g., shared office).”
|Title||Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed|
|Education||These occupations usually require a high school diploma.|
|Related Experience||Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include sheet metal workers, forest fire fighters, customer service representatives, physical therapist aides, salespersons (retail), and tellers.|
|SVP Range||(4.0 to < 6.0)|
Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
|79||High school diploma or equivalent|
|19||Less than high school diploma|
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.
- Attention to Detail — Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
- Dependability — Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
- 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.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- Social Orientation — Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
- 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.
- 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.
- Independence — Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Wages & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2014)||$15.58 hourly, $32,410 annual|
|Employment (2012)||11,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2012-2022)||Decline (-3% or lower)|
|Projected job openings (2012-2022)||1,400|
|Top industries (2012)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2014 wage data and 2012-2022 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2012-2022). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.
Job Openings on the Web
Sources of Additional Information
Disclaimer: Sources are listed to provide additional information on related jobs, specialties, and/or industries. Links to non-DOL Internet sites are provided for your convenience and do not constitute an endorsement.
- Metal and Plastic Machine Workers . Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition.