Swaging machine operators set up and tend rotary swaging machines, designed to alter round ferrous and non-ferrous metal workpieces into their desired shape by first hammering them into a smaller diameter through the compressive force of two or more dies and then tagging them using a rotary swager, a process through which no excess material is lost.
The following job titles also refer to swaging machine operator:
swaging machine setter
forging machine tender
forging machine setter
swaging machine tender
forging machine operative
swaging machine operative
No formal educational credential is generally required to work as a swaging machine operator.
ISCO skill level
ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:
- the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
- the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
- the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.
Swaging machine operator is a Skill level 2 occupation.
Swaging machine operator career path
These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to swaging machine operator.
Long term prospects
These occupations require some skills and knowledge of swaging machine operator. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of swaging machine operator with a significant experience and/or extensive training.
Essential knowledge and skills
This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of swaging machine operator.
- Swaging machine types: Types of machines used for swaging processes in forging, such as the tagging machine, the butt swaging machine, the creeping spindle swaging machine and others.
- Swaging processes: Processes related to the forging practices of swaging, such as tube swaging, rotary swaging, roller swaging, butt swaging and others.
- Quality and cycle time optimisation: The most optimal rotation or cycle time and over-all quality of a tool or a machine’s processes.
- Types of metal: Qualities, specifications, applications and reactions to different fabricating processes of various types of metal, such as steel, aluminium, brass, copper and others.
- Quality standards: The national and international requirements, specifications and guidelines to ensure that products, services and processes are of good quality and fit for purpose.
- Forging processes: The various processes in the metalforming practices of forging, such as swaging, open-die forging, automatic hot forging, cogging, impression-die forging, roll forging, upsetting, press forging, and others.
Essential skills and competences
These skills are necessary for the role of swaging machine operator.
- Tend swaging machine: Tend a swaging machine, designed for forming usually cold metal by use of a high energy force and swage blocks, monitor and operate it, according to regulations.
- Remove inadequate workpieces: Evaluate which deficient processed workpieces do not meet the set-up standard and should be removed and sort the waste according to regulations.
- Troubleshoot: Identify operating problems, decide what to do about it and report accordingly.
- Remove processed workpiece: Remove individual workpieces after processing, from the manufacturing machine or the machine tool. In case of a conveyor belt this involves quick, continuous movement.
- Hold metal work piece in machine: Manually position and hold a, potentially heated, metal work piece for the machine to perform the necessary metalworking processes on it. Take the forming character of the machine into account in order to optimally place and maintain the processed work piece.
- Monitor moving workpiece in a machine: Monitor the processing of a workpiece in motion, such as a piece of metal or wood moved linearly over a static manufacturing machine.
- Perform test run: Perform tests putting a system, machine, tool or other equipment through a series of actions under actual operating conditions in order to assess its reliability and suitability to realise its tasks, and adjust settings accordingly.
- Ensure equipment availability: Ensure that the necessary equipment is provided, ready and available for use before start of procedures.
- Monitor automated machines: Continuously check up on the automated machine’s set-up and execution or make regular control rounds. If necessary, record and interpret data on the operating conditions of installations and equipment in order to identify abnormalities.
- Supply machine: Ensure the machine is fed the necessary and adequate materials and control the placement or automatic feed and retrieval of work pieces in the machines or machine tools on the production line.
Optional knowledge and skills
This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of swaging machine operator. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.
- Non-ferrous metal processing: Various processing methods on non-ferrous metals and alloys such as copper, zinc and aluminium.
- Manufacturing of metal structures: The production of metal structures for construction.
- Manufacturing of cutlery: The manufacture of different cutlery items, such as forks, spoons, knives, razors or scissors.
- Ferrous metal processing: Various processing methods on iron and iron-containing alloys such as steel, stainless steel and pig iron.
- Manufacturing of metal household articles: The manufacture of flatware , hollowware , dinnerware and other non-electrical utensils for use at the table or in the kitchen.
- Metal forming technologies: The variety of technologies and techniques, such as forging, pressing, stamping, rolling and others, used for the forming processes of metal product manufacturing.
- Manufacturing of small metal parts: The manufacture of metal cable, plaited bands and other articles of that type, uninsulated or insulated cable not capable of being used as a conductor of electricity, coated or cored wire as well as barbed wire, wire fencing, grill, netting, cloth etc. Manufacture of coated electrodes for electric arc-welding, nails and pins, chain and springs (except watch springs): as well as leaves for springs.
- Characteristics of precious metals: Variations of precious metals according to density, corrossion resistance, electrical conductivity, light reflectivity and quality.
- Manufacturing of metal assembly products: The manufacture of rivets, washers and similar non-threaded products, screw machine products, screws, nuts and similar threaded products.
- Dies: The qualities and applications of various kinds of dies, the different components of a die (such as the die block, punch plate, pierce punch and others) and the types of die used in specialised manufacturing processes ( such as extrusion dies, drawing dies, forming dies, cutting dies, compound dies, and others).
- Cold forging: The metalworking process of forging whilst hot metal is right below its recrystallisation temperature, being cooled and solidified after casting.
- Manufacturing of door furniture from metal: The manufacture of metal items that can be attached to a door in order to support its function and appearance. The manufacture of padlocks, locks, keys, hinges and the like, and hardware for buildings, furniture, vehicles etc.
- Manufacturing of light metal packaging: The manufacture of tins and cans for food products, collapsible tubes and boxes, and of metallic closures.
- Manufacturing of doors from metal: The manufacture of metal doors, windows and their frames, shutters and gates, and the metal room partitions for floor attachment.
- Hot forging: The metalworking process of forging whilst the hot metal is right above its recrystallisation temperature after casting and being solidified.
- Manufacturing of weapons and ammunition: The manufacture of heavy weapons (artillery, mobile guns, rocket launchers, torpedo tubes, heavy machine guns), small arms (revolvers, shotguns, light machine guns), air or gas guns and pistols, and war ammunition. Also the manufacture of hunting, sporting or protective firearms and ammunition and of explosive devices such as bombs, mines and torpedoes.
- Manufacturing of tools: The manufacture of knives and cutting blades for machines or for mechanical appliances, hand tools such as pliers, screwdrivers etc. The manufacture of non-power-driven agricultural hand tools, saws and saw blades, including circular saw blades and chainsaw blades. The manufacture of interchangeable tools for hand tools, whether or not power-operated, or for machine tools: drills, punches, milling cutters etc. The manufacture of press tools, moulding boxes and moulds (except ingot moulds), vices and clamps, and blacksmiths’ tools: forges, anvils etc.
- Precious metal processing: Various processing methods on precious metals such as gold, silver and platinum.
Optional skills and competences
These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of swaging machine operator. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.
- Inspect quality of products: Use various techniques to ensure the product quality is respecting the quality standards and specifications. Oversee defects, packaging and sendbacks of products to different production departments.
- Record production data for quality control: Keep records of the machine’s faults, interventions and irregularities for quality control.
- Operate precision measuring equipment: Measure the size of a processed part when checking and marking it to check if it is up to standard by use of two and three dimensional precision measuring equipment such as a caliper, a micrometer, and a measuring gauge.
- Wear appropriate protective gear: Wear relevant and necessary protective gear, such as protective goggles or other eye protection, hard hats, safety gloves.
- Perform machine maintenance: Perform regular maintenance, possibly including corrections and alterations, on a machine or machine tool to ensure it remains in a proper productive state.
- Provide advice to technicians: Offer help and advice to service technicians in case of machine malfunctions and other repair tasks.
- Mark processed workpiece: Inspect and mark parts of the workpiece to indicate how they will fit into the finished product.
- Apply precision metalworking techniques: Comply with precision standards specific to an organisation or product in metalworking, involved in processes such as engraving, precise cutting, welding.
- Consult technical resources: Read and interpret such technical resources such as digital or paper drawings and adjustment data in order to properly set up a machine or working tool, or to assemble mechanical equipment.
- Ensure correct metal temperature: Ensure the necessary, usually constant, temperature of processed metal workpieces during metal fabrication processes.
- Keep records of work progress: Maintain records of the progress of the work including time, defects, malfunctions, etc.
- Set up the controller of a machine: Set up and give commands to a machine by dispatching the appropriate data and input into the (computer) controller corresponding with the desired processed product.
- Replace die: Evaluate if a replacement of the die of a machine is deemed beneficial and take the necessary actions for replacing it either manually (depending on its size, by the use of a manual lifting tackle) or mechanically.
ISCO group and title
7223 – Metal working machine tool setters and operators
- Swaging machine operator – ESCO