Precision machining or CNC machining as it is also known as, involves the manufacturing of the various components required to make an extensive range of products. In order to become a CNC or precision machinist, you will need to possess a few particular attributes and be willing to work precisely with every single task that is assigned to you.
In order to become a precision machinist, you will require a high school diploma with an aptitude for math and physics. While many employers provide on the job training, it is a good idea to enroll in an appropriate training and certification course, especially if you would like to make CNC machining a long-term career option.
How Long Will I Apprentice for?
The amount of time you will spend as an apprentice is a function of how quickly you develop the skills required to set-up and run parts that meet the specifications of the drawings. Your training will be divided into three main streams. First, you will be trained on the machines and tools you are using. You will get familiar with the machines by loading the machines with material and removing the completed part from the machine. You will then be shown how to change tools and finally how to set up the machines following predetermined layouts. Secondly, you will receive training in quality control. This will begin with training on the gauges and instruments the company uses to measure parts. You will then be trained on checking actual production and finally on reading quality control plans. The final stream of training is on company policies and procedures. This includes a review of the companies handbook and WHMIS and other safety training.
When working as a precision machinist, you will be exposed to numerous tools, machines and hazardous materials. You will need to adhere to strict health and safety regulations while working, which can include wearing safety shoes, protective eyewear and earplugs. You will also need to be physically fit and healthy, as you will often be required to bend, reach, lift relatively heavy items and spend long periods of time on your feet each day.
If you enjoy designing and/or creating intricate items and you enjoy working with your hands, a career in the precision machining industry may be the ideal option for you.