Computer numerical control (CNC) machining uses a computer interface to program data points into a multi-axis tool system that precisely mills material to the desired shape. A job in CNC machining can blossom into a rewarding career of manufacturing the items that make modern living possible.
What Does a CNC Machinist Do?
A CNC machinist monitors and maintains the sophisticated equipment that is used to cut metal, wood, glass, and more. This includes ensuring that the machine is supplied with raw materials, programming the machine for different tasks, checking the finished product while providing quality control, and maintaining or repairing the machine for quality assurance.
Education and Training
In most cases, a high school diploma is sufficient for an entry-level CNC machining job. Students with an early interest in the profession can get a jump-start on their training by familiarizing themselves with tools, drafting techniques, welding, and other shop work. If a student attends a high school that doesn’t offer wood or metal working courses, he or she can still pursue a job in CNC machining. A strong background in math and computer sciences, especially algebra, trigonometry, and geometry will provide a good foundation. After high school, aspiring machinists usually enroll in an apprenticeship program to learn the job from an experienced teacher. Those interested in learning more about the industry can sign up for CMS North America’s newsletter to stay apprised of the latest developments.
Job Prospects and Salary
The history of CNC machining is one of relentless innovation. That innovation has led to an increase in jobs for machinists. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that demand for CNC machining professionals will increase by 10%. With a median salary of $43,740, a machinist can provide a stable foundation for starting a family. Experienced CNC machinists can earn more as they progress through their career.