Salary and Outlook
According to the US Department of Labor, there are 69,400 people employed as woodworking machine setters, operators, and tenders, except sawing in
the United States.
The median annual salary is $36,090.
Entry level employees earn approximately $23,960 per year and senior employees earn approximately $47,330
Estimates do not include other potential benefits such as health insurance, overtime pay, or retirement benefits that may be offered by employers.
- Select knives, saws, blades, cutter heads, cams, bits, or belts, according to workpiece, machine functions, or product specifications.
- Remove and replace worn parts, bits, belts, sandpaper, or shaping tools.
- Secure woodstock against a guide or in a holding device, place woodstock on a conveyor, or dump woodstock in a hopper to feed woodstock into machines.
- Inspect and mark completed workpieces and stack them on pallets, in boxes, or on conveyors so that they can be moved to the next workstation.
- Inspect pulleys, drive belts, guards, or fences on machines to ensure that machines will operate safely.
- Clean or maintain products, machines, or work areas.
- Set up, program, or control computer-aided design (CAD) or computer numerical control (CNC) machines.
- Control hoists to remove parts or products from work stations.
- Sharpen knives, bits, or other cutting or shaping tools.
- Attach and adjust guides, stops, clamps, chucks, or feed mechanisms, using hand tools.
- Trim wood parts according to specifications, using planes, chisels, or wood files or sanders.
- Grease or oil woodworking machines.
- Unclamp workpieces and remove them from machines.
- Start machines and move levers to engage hydraulic lifts that press woodstocks into desired forms and disengage lifts after appropriate drying times.
- Operate gluing machines to glue pieces of wood together, or to press and affix wood veneer to wood surfaces.
- Set up, program, operate, or tend computerized or manual woodworking machines, such as drill presses, lathes, shapers, routers, sanders, planers, or wood-nailing machines.
- Examine finished workpieces for smoothness, shape, angle, depth-of-cut, or conformity to specifications and verify dimensions, visually and using hands, rules, calipers, templates, or gauges.
- Start machines, adjust controls, and make trial cuts to ensure that machinery is operating properly.
- Monitor operation of machines and make adjustments to correct problems and ensure conformance to specifications.
- Examine raw woodstock for defects and to ensure conformity to size and other specification standards.
- Adjust machine tables or cutting devices and set controls on machines to produce specified cuts or operations.
- Install and adjust blades, cutterheads, boring-bits, or sanding-belts, using hand tools and rules.
- Change alignment and adjustment of sanding, cutting, or boring machine guides to prevent defects in finished products, using hand tools.
- Determine product specifications and materials, work methods, and machine setup requirements, according to blueprints, oral or written instructions, drawings, or work orders.
- Feed stock through feed mechanisms or conveyors into planing, shaping, boring, mortising, or sanding machines to produce desired components.
- Push or hold workpieces against, under, or through cutting, boring, or shaping mechanisms.