Heat Treating Equipment Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic Career

Job Description: Set up, operate, or tend heating equipment, such as heat-treating furnaces, flame-hardening machines, induction machines, soaking pits, or vacuum equipment to temper, harden, anneal, or heat treat metal or plastic objects.


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Heat Treating Equipment Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic Career

What Heat Treating Equipment Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastics do:

  • Set up and operate or tend machines, such as furnaces, baths, flame-hardening machines, and electronic induction machines, that harden, anneal, and heat-treat metal.
  • Instruct new workers in machine operation.
  • Read production schedules and work orders to determine processing sequences, furnace temperatures, and heat cycle requirements for objects to be heat-treated.
  • Adjust controls to maintain temperatures and heating times, using thermal instruments and charts, dials and gauges of furnaces, and color of stock in furnaces to make setting determinations.
  • Record times that parts are removed from furnaces to document that objects have attained specified temperatures for specified times.
  • Remove parts from furnaces after specified times, and air dry or cool parts in water, oil brine, or other baths.
  • Move controls to light gas burners and to adjust gas and water flow and flame temperature.
  • Start conveyors and open furnace doors to load stock, or signal crane operators to uncover soaking pits and lower ingots into them.
  • Load parts into containers and place containers on conveyors to be inserted into furnaces, or insert parts into furnaces.
  • Set and adjust speeds of reels and conveyors for prescribed time cycles to pass parts through continuous furnaces.
  • Examine parts to ensure metal shades and colors conform to specifications, using knowledge of metal heat-treating.
  • Reduce heat when processing is complete to allow parts to cool in furnaces or machinery.
  • Test parts for hardness, using hardness testing equipment, or by examining and feeling samples.
  • Determine types and temperatures of baths and quenching media needed to attain specified part hardness, toughness, and ductility, using heat-treating charts and knowledge of methods, equipment, and metals.
  • Repair, replace, and maintain furnace equipment as needed, using hand tools.
  • Determine flame temperatures, current frequencies, heating cycles, and induction heating coils needed, based on degree of hardness required and properties of stock to be treated.
  • Signal forklift operators to deposit or extract containers of parts into and from furnaces and quenching rinse tanks.
  • Heat billets, bars, plates, rods, and other stock to specified temperatures preparatory to forging, rolling, or processing, using oil, gas, or electrical furnaces.
  • Position stock in furnaces, using tongs, chain hoists, or pry bars.
  • Mount workpieces in fixtures, on arbors, or between centers of machines.
  • Clean oxides and scales from parts or fittings, using steam sprays or chemical and water baths.
  • Mount fixtures and industrial coils on machines, using hand tools.
  • Stamp heat-treatment identification marks on parts, using hammers and punches.
  • Place completed workpieces on conveyors, using cold rods, tongs, or chain hoists, or signal crane operators to transport them to subsequent stations.
  • Set up and operate die-quenching machines to prevent parts from warping.
  • Position parts in plastic bags, and seal bags with irons.

What work activities are most important?

Importance Activities

Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

Controlling Machines and Processes - Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment - Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.

Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.

Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.

Coaching and Developing Others - Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.

Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment - Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

Provide Consultation and Advice to Others - Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.

Repairing and Maintaining Electronic Equipment - Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing machines, devices, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of electrical or electronic (not mechanical) principles.

Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates - Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.

Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others - Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.

Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others - Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.

Holland Code Chart for a Heat Treating Equipment Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic