Plating Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic Career

Job Description: Set up, operate, or tend plating machines to coat metal or plastic products with chromium, zinc, copper, cadmium, nickel, or other metal to protect or decorate surfaces. Typically, the product being coated is immersed in molten metal or an electrolytic solution.


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Plating Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic Career

What Plating Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastics do:

  • Set up, operate, or tend plating or coating machines to coat metal or plastic products with chromium, zinc, copper, cadmium, nickel, or other metal to protect or decorate surfaces.
  • Observe gauges to ensure that machines are operating properly, making adjustments or stopping machines when problems occur.
  • Inspect coated or plated areas for defects, such as air bubbles or uneven coverage.
  • Maintain production records.
  • Remove objects from solutions at periodic intervals and observe objects to verify conformance to specifications.
  • Adjust dials to regulate flow of current and voltage supplied to terminals to control plating processes.
  • Immerse workpieces in coating solutions or liquid metal or plastic for specified times.
  • Remove excess materials or impurities from objects, using air hoses or grinding machines.
  • Examine completed objects to determine thicknesses of metal deposits, or measure thicknesses by using instruments such as micrometers.
  • Rinse coated objects in cleansing liquids and dry them with cloths, centrifugal driers, or by tumbling in sawdust-filled barrels.
  • Replace worn parts and adjust equipment components, using hand tools.
  • Operate hoists to place workpieces onto machine feed carriages or spindles.
  • Test machinery to ensure that it is operating properly.
  • Suspend sticks or pieces of plating metal from anodes, or positive terminals, and immerse metal in plating solutions.
  • Read production schedules to determine setups of equipment and machines.
  • Measure, mark, and mask areas to be excluded from plating.
  • Immerse objects to be coated or plated into cleaning solutions, or spray objects with conductive solutions to prepare them for plating.
  • Measure or weigh materials, using rulers, calculators, and scales.
  • Position objects to be plated in frames, or suspend them from positive or negative terminals of power supplies.
  • Determine sizes and compositions of objects to be plated, and amounts of electrical current and time required.
  • Adjust controls to set temperatures of coating substances and speeds of machines and equipment.
  • Position containers to receive parts, and load or unload materials in containers, using dollies or handtrucks.
  • Suspend objects, such as parts or molds from cathode rods, or negative terminals, and immerse objects in plating solutions.
  • Monitor and measure thicknesses of electroplating on component parts to verify conformance to specifications, using micrometers.
  • Clean workpieces, using wire brushes.
  • Clean and maintain equipment, using water hoses and scrapers.
  • Perform equipment maintenance, such as cleaning tanks and lubricating moving parts of conveyors.
  • Place plated or coated materials on racks and transfer them to ovens to dry for specified periods of time.
  • Mix and test solutions, and turn valves to fill tanks with solutions.
  • Operate sandblasting equipment to roughen and clean surfaces of workpieces.
  • Position and feed materials into processing machines, by hand or by using automated equipment.
  • Preheat workpieces in ovens.
  • Measure and set stops, rolls, brushes, and guides on automatic feeders and conveying equipment or coating machines, using micrometers, rules, and hand tools.
  • Cut metal or other materials, using shears or band saws.
  • Plate small objects, such as nuts or bolts, using motor-driven barrels.
  • Install gears and holding devices on conveyor equipment.
  • Spray coating in specified patterns according to instructions.
  • Attach nozzles, position guns, connect hoses, and thread wire to set up metal-spraying machines.

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.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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.

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

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

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

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.

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

Developing and Building Teams - Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.

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

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.

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

Assisting and Caring for Others - Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.

Holland Code Chart for a Plating Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic