Summary Report for:
51-4062.00 - Patternmakers, Metal and Plastic
Lay out, machine, fit, and assemble castings and parts to metal or plastic foundry patterns, core boxes, or match plates.
Sample of reported job titles: Computer Numerical Control Operator (CNC Operator), Computer Numerical Control Programmer (CNC Programmer), Die Cast Die Maker, Fixture Builder, Journeyman Patternmaker, Machinist, Metal Pattern Maker, Model Maker, Pattern Maker, Pattern Repair Person
Tasks | Tools & Technology | Knowledge | Skills | Abilities | Work Activities | Detailed Work Activities | Work Context | Job Zone | Education | Credentials | Interests | Work Styles | Work Values | Related Occupations | Wages & Employment | Job Openings | Additional Information
- Set up and operate machine tools, such as milling machines, lathes, drill presses, and grinders, to machine castings or patterns.
- Read and interpret blueprints or drawings of parts to be cast or patterns to be made, compute dimensions, and plan operational sequences.
- Verify conformance of patterns or template dimensions to specifications, using measuring instruments such as calipers, scales, and micrometers.
- Program computerized numerical control machine tools.
- Design and create templates, patterns, or coreboxes according to work orders, sample parts, or mockups.
- Assemble pattern sections, using hand tools, bolts, screws, rivets, glue, or welding equipment.
- Repair and rework templates and patterns.
- Lay out and draw or scribe patterns onto material, using compasses, protractors, rulers, scribes, or other instruments.
- Clean and finish patterns or templates, using emery cloths, files, scrapers, and power grinders.
- Construct platforms, fixtures, and jigs for holding and placing patterns.
- Mark identification numbers or symbols onto patterns or templates.
- Select pattern materials such as wood, resin, and fiberglass.
- Apply plastic-impregnated fabrics or coats of sealing wax or lacquer to patterns used to produce plastic.
Tools & Technology
Tools used in this occupation:
- Bench scales — Digital bench scales
- Boring machines — Jig borers
- Calipers — Digital calipers
- Casting machines — Gating systems
- Cold chisels — Flat cold chisels
- Compasses — Dividers; Layout compasses
- Core drying ovens — Drying chambers
- Disc sander — Disc sanders
- Drill press or radial drill — Benchtop drill presses
- Foundry crucibles — Crucible furnaces
- Foundry flasks
- Foundry ladles — Foundry casting ladles
- Hand trucks or accessories — Warehouse hand trucks
- Hoists — Electric hoists
- Horizontal turning center — Horizontal turning centers
- Laser measuring systems — Laser scanner coordinate capturing equipment
- Manual press brake — Manual brake presses
- Metal band sawing machine — Bandsaws
- Micrometers — Digital micrometers
- Milling machines — Three-dimensional routers
- Personal computers
- Planing machines — Planers
- Positioning jig — Precision positioning jigs
- Power grinders
- Power routers
- Power saws — Radial arm saws; Table saws
- Rulers — Precision rulers; Shrinkage rulers
- Scribers — Metalworking scribers
- Shaper cutter — Shaping cutters
- Squares — Layout squares
- Tape measures — Measuring tapes
- Traveling column milling machine — 2/3 axis computer numerically controlled CNC milling machines
- Turret lathe — Computer numerical control CNC turning centers
- Utility knives — Draw knives
- Wire cathode electrode discharge machine — Wire electrical discharge machining EDM equipment
Technology used in this occupation:
- Computer aided design CAD software — 3D Systems Geomagic Design X; Autodesk AutoCAD
- Computer aided manufacturing CAM software — Delcam PowerMILL; Mastercam
- Electronic mail software — Microsoft Outlook
- Spreadsheet software — Microsoft Excel
Hot Technology — a technology requirement frequently included in employer job postings.
- Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
- 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.
- 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.
- Computers and Electronics — Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
- 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.
- 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.
- Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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).
- 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.
- Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- 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.
- Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
- Oral Expression — The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- 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.
- Written Comprehension — The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Deductive Reasoning — The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Inductive Reasoning — The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- 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.
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge — Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- 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.
- Handling and Moving Objects — Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
- Processing Information — Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.
- 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.
- Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
- Analyzing Data or Information — Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work — Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Interacting With Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
- 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.
- Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others — Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.
- Training and Teaching Others — Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.
- Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships — Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
- 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.
- 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.
Detailed Work Activities
- Operate grinding equipment.
- Calculate dimensions of workpieces, products, or equipment.
- Plan production or operational procedures or sequences.
- Review blueprints or other instructions to determine operational methods or sequences.
- Measure dimensions of completed products or workpieces to verify conformance to specifications.
- Program equipment to perform production tasks.
- Design templates or patterns.
- Construct patterns, templates, or other work aids.
- Operate welding equipment.
- Repair templates, patterns, or molds.
- Clean workpieces or finished products.
- Draw guide lines or markings on materials or workpieces using patterns or other references.
- Smooth metal surfaces or edges.
- Mark products, workpieces, or equipment with identifying information.
- Select production input materials.
- Apply solutions to production equipment.
- Apply protective or decorative finishes to workpieces or products.
- Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 99% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Hazardous Equipment — 87% responded “Every day.”
- Face-to-Face Discussions — 74% responded “Every day.”
- Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 68% responded “Extremely important.”
- Exposed to Contaminants — 69% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 66% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 57% responded “Every day.”
- Time Pressure — 42% responded “Every day.”
- Spend Time Standing — 46% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
- Duration of Typical Work Week — 50% responded “More than 40 hours.”
- Contact With Others — 40% responded “Constant contact with others.”
- Freedom to Make Decisions — 45% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 42% responded “Very important results.”
- Frequency of Decision Making — 44% responded “Every day.”
- Work With Work Group or Team — 41% responded “Extremely important.”
- Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings — 34% responded “Every day.”
- Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled — 55% responded “Every day.”
- Structured versus Unstructured Work — 37% responded “A lot of freedom.”
- Coordinate or Lead Others — 33% responded “Extremely important.”
- Physical Proximity — 47% responded “Moderately close (at arm's length).”
- Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 44% responded “Moderate responsibility.”
- Consequence of Error — 32% responded “Serious.”
- Level of Competition — 30% responded “Slightly competitive.”
- Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — 25% responded “Very high responsibility.”
- Indoors, Environmentally Controlled — 42% responded “Every day.”
- Exposed to Hazardous Conditions — 28% responded “Never.”
- Extremely Bright or Inadequate Lighting — 27% responded “Never.”
|Title||Job Zone Three: Medium Preparation Needed|
|Education||Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree.|
|Related Experience||Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.|
|Job Training||Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.|
|Job Zone Examples||These occupations usually involve using communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include food service managers, travel guides, electricians, agricultural technicians, barbers, nannies, and medical assistants.|
|SVP Range||(6.0 to < 7.0)|
Percentage of Respondents
|Education Level Required|
|17||High school diploma or equivalent|
|14||Some college, no degree|
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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
- Innovation — Job requires creativity and alternative thinking to develop new ideas for and answers to work-related problems.
- Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
- 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.
- Achievement/Effort — Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
- Adaptability/Flexibility — Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
- Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
- Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
- Self Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
- Leadership — Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
- Concern for Others — Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful 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.
- 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 & Employment Trends
|Median wages (2015)||$19.69 hourly, $40,960 annual|
|Employment (2014)||4,000 employees|
|Projected growth (2014-2024)||Decline (-2% or lower)|
|Projected job openings (2014-2024)||700|
|Top industries (2014)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data and 2014-2024 employment projections . "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "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, 2016-17 Edition.