Machinist Job Responsibilities in Tactical Machining |
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Machinist Job Responsibilities in Tactical Machining



Job Responsibilities in Tactical Machining: Machinists use a variety of machine tools and devices, such as lathes, drill presses, and grinders, to make precision metal parts. They use blueprints and manufacturing files to set up a machine and run it.

They also inspect work for quality and tolerances. They may be responsible for identifying defects and performing minor repairs on machines. They may work overtime, as well.

Job Description

Machinists operate a wide range of specialized machines, including lathes, mills, grinders and drills. They use these tools to shape metal, plastics and ceramics into components that are necessary for machines and equipment.

They often work closely with engineers and senior machinists to receive instructions and feedback. They are also trained to dismantle equipment when they need to make repairs or replace parts.

Before machining a part, machinists review electronic or written blueprints and specifications to determine the methods and sequences of operations required to produce the part. They then mark the workpiece to show where cuts should be made and determine how fast to feed the piece into the machine.

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They also work with metrology instruments, such as calipers and gauges, to measure the accuracy of their work. They also study sample parts, technical blueprints and drawings to understand product dimensions and tolerances.


Machinists use manual and automated machine tools to fabricate precision metal parts using a variety of techniques. They must have excellent manual dexterity, a good eye for detail and technical knowledge of their equipment.

Depending on the job, employers may require or prefer professional licenses, accreditations and certifications to ensure candidates meet industry standards and perform specialized tasks on the job. These typically involve gaining work experience, pursuing continuing education and passing an exam.

Develops sequences of commands for, performs set-ups on and operates computer numerically controlled (CNC) milling machines fully utilizing preprogrammed operations and subroutines; records data and commands for subsequent use by assigned machine operators or machinists. Monitors controls to regulate machining factors such as speed, feed and coolant flow; documents quality checks; and confers with CNC programmers and production management to resolve machining issues.

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Most job listings list the qualifications that a candidate must have to successfully perform the job. These include specific skills, types and amounts of work experience, personal qualities, educational credentials, professional certifications, areas of knowledge and other qualifications.


The machining industry is growing, and so is the demand for qualified hands-on machinists. A machinist might be required to perform all sorts of tasks, from adjusting equipment controls to programming computer-controlled (CNC) machines to designing custom parts and fabricating them from scratch. The responsibilities of this job entail many facets, including planning and organizing work schedules and making time for training and development activities.

A machinist may be required to operate multiple machine tools in a given shift, and will need to be physically fit and able to stand on their feet for up to 8 hours a day. They might also be called upon to lift up to 25 pounds on a regular basis. Some machinists find themselves in the role of team lead and may be required to oversee a small team of technicians or apprentices. The requisite qualifications include an accredited technical or trade-related bachelor’s degree, relevant certifications, and a proven track record of quality workmanship and safety compliance.

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Working Conditions

Machinists work in a machine shop or manufacturing space to create precision parts and instruments out of metal. They use a variety of machine tools, including lathes, milling machines, shapers, and grinders.

They communicate with supervisors to determine daily work assignments and study sample parts, blueprints, drawings, or engineering information to identify methods or sequences of operations. They calculate dimensions or tolerances using micrometers and calipers and machine parts to specifications.

Set up, adjust, program, and operate a variety of machine tools used to perform precision machining operations. Align and secure holding fixtures, cutting tools, attachments, accessories, and materials onto machines.

Machinists are required to stand for most of their workday and sometimes lift moderately heavy objects. They can be susceptible to back injuries if they aren’t careful. Modern shops and factories employ autoloaders to reduce the need for lifting.