Aircraft Structure, Surfaces, Rigging, and Systems Assemblers
SOC: 51-2011.00


Assemble, fit, fasten, and install parts of airplanes, space vehicles, or missiles, such as tails, wings, fuselage, bulkheads, stabilizers, landing gear, rigging and control equipment, or heating and ventilating systems.

National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.

Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
40,600 employed

Projected (2024):
38,600 employed

Projected growth (2014-2024)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 2014-2024 employment projections external site. "Projected growth" represents the estimated change in total employment over the projections period (2014-2024). "Projected job openings" represent openings due to growth and replacement.

Alternate Titles:

  • A&P Technician (Airframe and Powerplant Technician)
  • Aerospace Assembler
  • Aircraft De-Icer Installer
  • Aircraft Fuselage Framer
  • Aircraft Layout Worker
  • Aircraft Line Assembler
  • Aircraft Part Assembler
  • Aircraft Parts Assembler
  • Aircraft Powerplant Repairer
  • Aircraft Riveter
  • Aircraft Sheet Metal Mechanic
  • Aircraft Structures and Surfaces Assembler
  • Armament Aircraft Mechanic
  • Assembler
  • Assembly Riveter
  • Automatic Riveting Machine Operator
  • Auxiliary Powerplant Operator
  • Blanket Maker
  • Body Joiner
  • Body Liner
  • Body Worker
  • Cable Assembler and Swager
  • Conduit Bender
  • De-Icer Installer
  • Environmental Control System Aircraft Mechanic
  • Erco Machine Operator
  • Experimental Assembler
  • Fabricator
  • Fuel-Efficient Aircraft Construction Worker
  • Fuselage Framer
  • General Assembler-Installer
  • Harness Builder
  • Harness Installer
  • Helicopter Technician
  • Honeycomb Blanket Maker
  • Hydraulic Assembler
  • Manifold Builder
  • Manufacturing Assembler
  • Metal Bonder
  • Metal Fitter
  • Plumbing and Hydraulics Aircraft Mechanic
  • Plumbing Assembler
  • Powerplant Operator
  • Precision Aircraft Structure Assembler
  • Precision Aircraft Systems Assembler
  • Precision Assembler
  • Propeller Layout Worker
  • Rib Builder
  • Rigging and Controls Aircraft Mechanic
  • Safety Glass Installer
  • Sheet Metal Assembler and Riveter (SMAR)
  • Sheet Metal Mechanic
  • Shield Installer
  • Shroudman
  • Skin Fitter
  • Skin Installer
  • Spar Finisher
  • Structures Mechanic
  • Structures Technician
  • Tab Builder
  • Tubing Assembler
  • Wing Coverer

  • Job Zone Two: Some Preparation Needed


    Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.


    These occupations usually require a high school diploma.

    Job Training:

    Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognized apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.

    Required Skills:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Active Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Operations Analysis
  • Technology Design
  • Equipment Selection
  • Installation
  • Programming
  • Operation Monitoring
  • Operation and Control
  • Equipment Maintenance
  • Troubleshooting
  • Repairing
  • Quality Control Analysis
  • Judgment and Decision Making
  • Systems Analysis
  • Systems Evaluation
  • Time Management
  • Management of Financial Resources
  • Management of Material Resources
  • Management of Personnel Resources

  • Knowledge Used:

  • Administration and Management
  • Clerical
  • Economics and Accounting
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Personnel and Human Resources
  • Production and Processing
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Psychology
  • Geography
  • Medicine and Dentistry
  • Therapy and Counseling
  • Education and Training
  • English Language
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Law and Government
  • Telecommunications
  • Communications and Media
  • Transportation

  • Tasks:

  • Assemble prefabricated parts to form subassemblies.
  • Position and align subassemblies in jigs or fixtures, using measuring instruments and following blueprint lines and index points.
  • Align, fit, assemble, connect, or install system components, using jigs, fixtures, measuring instruments, hand tools, or power tools.
  • Join structural assemblies, such as wings, tails, or fuselage.
  • Layout and mark reference points and locations for installation of parts or components, using jigs, templates, or measuring and marking instruments.
  • Attach brackets, hinges, or clips to secure or support components or subassemblies, using bolts, screws, rivets, chemical bonding, or welding.
  • Inspect or test installed units, parts, systems, or assemblies for fit, alignment, performance, defects, or compliance with standards, using measuring instruments or test equipment.
  • Fit and fasten sheet metal coverings to surface areas or other sections of aircraft prior to welding or riveting.
  • Clean, oil, or coat system components as necessary before assembly or attachment.
  • Set, align, adjust, or synchronize aircraft armament or rigging or control system components to established tolerances or requirements using sighting devices and hand tools.
  • Fabricate parts needed for assembly or installation, using shop machinery or equipment.
  • Set up or operate machines or systems to crimp, cut, bend, form, swage, flare, bead, burr, or straighten tubing, according to specifications.
  • Weld tubing and fittings or solder cable ends, using tack-welders, induction brazing chambers, or other equipment.
  • Verify dimensions of cable assemblies or positions of fittings, using measuring instruments.
  • Mark identifying information on tubing or cable assemblies, using etching devices, labels, rubber stamps, or other methods.
  • Cut cables and tubing, using master templates, measuring instruments, and cable cutters or saws.
  • Swage fittings onto cables, using swaging machines.
  • Assemble prototypes or integrated-technology demonstrators of new or emerging environmental technologies for aircraft.
  • Capture or segregate waste material, such as aluminum swarf, machine cutting fluid, or solvents, for recycling or environmentally responsible disposal.
  • Clean aircraft structures, parts, or components, using aqueous, semi-aqueous, aliphatic hydrocarbon, or organic solvent cleaning products or techniques to reduce carbon or other harmful emissions.
  • Monitor robotic assembly equipment, such as snake-arm robots, used to assemble, seal, or swage aircraft structures.
  • Assemble parts, fittings, or subassemblies on aircraft, using layout tools, hand tools, power tools, or fasteners, such as bolts, screws, rivets, or clamps.
  • Read blueprints, illustrations, or specifications to determine layouts, sequences of operations, or identities or relationships of parts.
  • Adjust, repair, rework, or replace parts or assemblies to ensure proper operation.
  • Cut, trim, file, bend, or smooth parts to ensure proper fit and clearance.
  • Manually install structural assemblies or signal crane operators to position assemblies for joining.
  • Place and connect control cables to electronically controlled units, using hand tools, ring locks, cotter keys, threaded connectors, turnbuckles, or related devices.
  • Install mechanical linkages and actuators, using tensiometers to verify tension of cables.
  • Install accessories in swaging machines, using hand tools.
  • Splice cables, using clamps and fittings, or reweave cable strands.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • Adhesive application robots
  • Alligator jaw compression riveters
  • Anti-vibration gloves
  • Arc welding equipment
  • Assembly robots
  • Autoriveters
  • Beading tools
  • Bearing installation tools
  • Bearing staking tools
  • Blind rivet guns
  • Brazing equipment
  • Burring tools
  • C-yoke compression riveters
  • Cable cutters
  • Case wrenches
  • Desktop computers
  • Dial calipers
  • Drafting templates
  • Electrochemical etching devices
  • First assembly jigs
  • Flange wrenches
  • Flaring tools
  • Fuel control wrenches
  • Fuel nozzle wrenches
  • Gear shaft wrenches
  • Hand clamps
  • Input wrenches
  • Line reamers
  • Material guiding jigs
  • Metal bending equipment
  • Metal bucking bars
  • Micrometers
  • Milling machines
  • Mylar index templates
  • Nut wrenches
  • Offset screwdrivers
  • Overhead cranes
  • Pin protrusion gauges
  • Pipe bending mandrels
  • Pneumatic drills
  • Power drills
  • Power hoists
  • Power saws
  • Power screwguns
  • Precision tapered reamers
  • Protective ear muffs
  • Protective ear plugs
  • Ratcheting box wrenches
  • Ratchets
  • Recoilless rivet hammers
  • Rivet guns
  • Safety glasses
  • Safety gloves
  • Setup templates
  • Single-cut mill saw files
  • Soldering irons
  • Spanner wrenches
  • Spline key wrenches
  • Spot welding equipment
  • Straight screwdrivers
  • Swaging tools
  • Tack welding equipment
  • Tensiometers
  • Thickness gauges
  • Torque drivers
  • Trunnion centering tools
  • Trunnion wrenches
  • Tube crimping tools
  • Ultrasonic inspection equipment
  • Welding hoods
  • Welding robots
  • Computer aided design CAD software
  • Data entry software
  • Electrical power management system software
  • Spreadsheet software
  • Word processing software

  • production

    industry stats

    SOC: 51-0000

    Total Employed: 9,073,290

    Average Annual Salary: $36,220