Glass Blowers, Molders, Benders, and Finishers

Shape molten glass according to patterns.

Sample of reported job titles: Gaffer, Glass Bender, Glass Blower, Glass Lathe Operator, Glass Tube Bender, Glassblower, Neon Glass Bender, Neon Tube Bender

Occupation-Specific Information

Tasks

  • Heat glass to pliable stage, using gas flames or ovens and rotating glass to heat it uniformly.
  • Inspect, weigh, and measure products to verify conformance to specifications, using instruments such as micrometers, calipers, magnifiers, or rulers.
  • Record manufacturing information, such as quantities, sizes, or types of goods produced.
  • Place glass into dies or molds of presses and control presses to form products, such as glassware components or optical blanks.
  • Spray or swab molds with oil solutions to prevent adhesion of glass.
  • Blow tubing into specified shapes to prevent glass from collapsing, using compressed air or own breath, or blow and rotate gathers in molds or on boards to obtain final shapes.
  • Operate electric kilns that heat and mold glass sheets to the shape and curve of metal jigs.
  • Determine types and quantities of glass required to fabricate products.
  • Set up and adjust machine press stroke lengths and pressures and regulate oven temperatures, according to glass types to be processed.
  • Shape, bend, or join sections of glass, using paddles, pressing and flattening hand tools, or cork.
  • Design and create glass objects, using blowpipes and artisans' hand tools and equipment.
  • Place electrodes in tube ends and heat them with glass burners to fuse them into place.
  • Operate and maintain finishing machines to grind, drill, sand, bevel, decorate, wash, or polish glass or glass products.
  • Repair broken scrolls by replacing them with new sections of tubing.
  • Develop sketches of glass products into blueprint specifications, applying knowledge of glass technology and glass blowing.
  • Superimpose bent tubing on asbestos patterns to ensure accuracy.
  • Cut lengths of tubing to specified sizes, using files or cutting wheels.
  • Strike necks of finished articles to separate articles from blowpipes.
  • Place rubber hoses on ends of tubing and charge tubing with gas.

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Technology Skills

Hot technology Hot Technologies are requirements frequently included in employer job postings.

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Occupational Requirements

Work Activities

  • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Controlling Machines and Processes — Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates — Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Materials — Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
  • Monitoring 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.
  • 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 materials.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events — Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems — Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • 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.
  • Working with Computers — Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

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Detailed Work Activities

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Work Context

  • Exposed to Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites, or Stings — 99% responded “Every day.”
  • Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets — 96% responded “Every day.”
  • Exposed to Contaminants — 84% responded “Every day.”
  • Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable — 71% responded “Every day.”
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate — 36% responded “Very important.”
  • Face-to-Face Discussions — 50% responded “Every day.”
  • Frequency of Decision Making — 68% responded “Every day.”
  • Very Hot or Cold Temperatures — 56% responded “Every day.”
  • Freedom to Make Decisions — 38% responded “A lot of freedom.”
  • Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls — 55% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
  • Duration of Typical Work Week
  • Exposed to Hazardous Equipment — 56% responded “Every day.”
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results — 48% responded “Very important results.”
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work — 39% responded “A lot of freedom.”
  • Work With Work Group or Team — 47% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Spend Time Making Repetitive Motions — 29% responded “Continually or almost continually.”
  • Indoors, Not Environmentally Controlled — 25% responded “Never.”
  • Spend Time Standing — 35% responded “More than half the time.”
  • Consequence of Error — 47% responded “Extremely serious.”
  • Pace Determined by Speed of Equipment — 44% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Physical Proximity — 40% responded “Slightly close (e.g., shared office).”
  • Time Pressure — 36% responded “Every day.”
  • Contact With Others — 26% responded “Constant contact with others.”
  • Extremely Bright or Inadequate Lighting — 38% responded “Never.”
  • Letters and Memos — 25% responded “Every day.”
  • Responsibility for Outcomes and Results — 37% responded “Limited responsibility.”
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety — 39% responded “Limited responsibility.”
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks — 24% responded “Important.”

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Experience Requirements

Job Zone

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 orderlies, counter and rental clerks, customer service representatives, security guards, upholsterers, and tellers.
SVP Range
3 months to 1 year of preparation (4.0 to < 6.0)

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Training & Credentials

State training
Local training
Certifications
Apprenticeships
Have a career path or location in mind? Visit Apprenticeship.gov external site to find apprenticeship opportunities near you.

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Worker Requirements

Skills

  • Operation and Control — Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Operations 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.
  • 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.
  • Reading Comprehension — Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work-related documents.

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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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • English Language — Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Education and Training — Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

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Education

How much education does a new hire need to perform a job in this occupation? Respondents said:

  • 43%
     
    responded: Less than high school diploma required
  • 34%
     
    responded: High school diploma or equivalent requiredmore info
  • 20%
     
    responded: Post-secondary certificate required

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Worker Characteristics

Abilities

  • 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.
  • Reaction Time — The ability to quickly respond (with the hand, finger, or foot) to a signal (sound, light, picture) when it appears.
  • 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.
  • Visual Color Discrimination — The ability to match or detect differences between colors, including shades of color and brightness.
  • Visualization — The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Selective Attention — The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Category Flexibility — The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • 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).
  • 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 that there is a problem.
  • 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.

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Interests

Interest code: RCA
Want to discover your interests? Take the O*NET Interest Profiler at My Next Move.
  • 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.
  • 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.

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

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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.
  • 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.
  • Initiative — Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Persistence — Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Cooperation — Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Self-Control — Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • 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.
  • Analytical Thinking — Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.
  • Stress Tolerance — Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high-stress situations.
  • Integrity — Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • 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.
  • 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.

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Workforce Characteristics

Wages & Employment Trends

Median wage data for Molders, Shapers, and Casters, Except Metal and Plastic.
Employment data for Molders, Shapers, and Casters, Except Metal and Plastic.
Industry data for Molders, Shapers, and Casters, Except Metal and Plastic.
Median wages (2021)
$18.03 hourly, $37,500 annual
State wages
Local wages
Employment (2020)
46,300 employees
Projected growth (2020-2030)
Much faster than average (15% or higher)
Projected job openings (2020-2030)
5,700
State trends
Top industries (2020)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2021 wage data external site and 2020-2030 employment projections external site. “Projected growth” represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2020-2030). “Projected job openings” represent openings due to growth and replacement.

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Job Openings on the Web

State job openings
Local job openings

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