Technology is always being improved, one machine at a time. However, the parts that make the machines, screws, tools, pistons, aircraft engine parts–these are all made by a machinist. They use highly advanced machines to shape all kinds of metals into parts that require a very high accuracy to function correctly, something no human can do. In fact, machines bring such precision, you are often no more than .005 inches from your mark.
As for speed, they are second to none. Human hands just are not capable of creating components and tools in 10 seconds.
You will often see machinists handling lathe tools, drill chuck sleeves, machinist blocks, and mill power feeds, to name a few. They contribute to the $4.6 billion power tool industry. Machinist blocks, for example, are often used in conjunction with mills and drills, and clamps. Machinist blocks help keep a project raised or parallel.
Even An Old Dog Can Learn New Tricks
You gain nothing from being a know-it-all. Any young, inexperienced machinist might have a method of doing something that completely reinvents or streamlines certain processes. This goes for inexperienced machinists as well: always ask questions, even if you see someone do something different; ask them why they did it a certain way. Temper your ego because it will get deflated. Learn from each other to become better, more successful machinists.
Do Not Skim Over Your Prints
The prints are there for a reason, to tell you what you are cutting and how you will cut it. Once you know that and understand it, the machine can take care of most of it.
You Need to Enjoy your Work
There is nothing worse than doing a job you have no passion in. It is not immediately apparent, but your work suffers considerably when your heart is not in it. If you do not care, then your work will show that you do not care.
Most Importantly, Do Your Job Right
Finding faster methods of completing a task is not off the table; it is encouraged. What is not encouraged is cutting corners. Machines may be doing the heavy lifting, but that does not mean a machinist gets to be sloppy. In fact, it is more of a reason for a machinist to be a precise as possible considering a machine has to carry out a machinist’s markings and dimensions.