Tool Grinders, Filers, and Sharpeners
SOC: 51-4194.00


Perform precision smoothing, sharpening, polishing, or grinding of metal objects.

National Salary Information:

Hourly Statistics:

Annual Statistics:

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 2015 wage data.

Employment Projections:

Employment (2014):
11,500 employed

Projected (2024):
9,500 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:

  • Card Grinder
  • Cell Operator
  • CNC Operator (Computer Numerically Controlled Operator)
  • Computer Numerical Control Grinding Technician (CNC Grinding Technician)
  • Crankshaft Grinder
  • Cutter Grind Tool Technician
  • Cutter Grinder
  • Cutting Tool Sharpener
  • Cylinder Grinder
  • Die Barber
  • Die Fitter
  • Die Grinder
  • Die Polisher
  • Die Reamer
  • Die Trimmer
  • Finish Filer
  • Finisher
  • Finishing Cell Grinder
  • Grinder
  • Grinder Cell Operator
  • Grinder Operator, External, Tool
  • Grinder Operator, Surface, Tool
  • Hand Finishing Cell Captain
  • Hand Tool Lapper
  • Internal Grinder Set-Up Operator
  • Machine Operator
  • Machinist
  • Maintenance Machinist
  • Mechanic
  • Mold Maker
  • Mold Polisher
  • Mold Repair Person
  • OD Grinder Operator (Outer Diameter Grinder Operator)
  • Outer Diameter Grinder (OD Grinder)
  • Outer Diameter Technician (OD Technician)
  • Polisher
  • Precision Grinder
  • Precision Honer
  • Sapphire Stylus Grinder
  • Saw Filer
  • Saw Fitter
  • Saw Straightener
  • Sharpener
  • Special Process Person
  • Thread Grinder
  • Tool and Cutter Grinder
  • Tool and Die Maker
  • Tool Dresser
  • Tool Grinder
  • Tool Grinder Operator
  • Tool Grinding Machine Operator
  • Tool Grinding Technician
  • Tool Maintenance Worker
  • Tool Maker
  • Tool Room Grinder
  • Tool Sharpener
  • Tool Straightener
  • Universal Grinder Set-Up Operator
  • Utility Person

  • 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
  • Critical Thinking
  • Active Learning
  • Learning Strategies
  • Monitoring
  • Social Perceptiveness
  • Coordination
  • Persuasion
  • Negotiation
  • Instructing
  • Service Orientation
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Operations Analysis
  • Technology Design
  • Equipment Selection
  • 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
  • Customer and Personal Service
  • Personnel and Human Resources
  • Production and Processing
  • Computers and Electronics
  • Engineering and Technology
  • Design
  • Mechanical
  • Mathematics
  • Education and Training
  • English Language
  • Public Safety and Security
  • Transportation

  • Tasks:

  • Dress grinding wheels, according to specifications.
  • Monitor machine operations to determine whether adjustments are necessary, stopping machines when problems occur.
  • Inspect, feel, and measure workpieces to ensure that surfaces and dimensions meet specifications.
  • Set up and operate grinding or polishing machines to grind metal workpieces such as dies, parts, and tools.
  • Remove finished workpieces from machines and place them in boxes or on racks, setting aside pieces that are defective.
  • File or finish surfaces of workpieces, using prescribed hand tools.
  • Select and mount grinding wheels on machines, according to specifications, using hand tools and applying knowledge of abrasives and grinding procedures.
  • Perform basic maintenance, such as cleaning and lubricating machine parts.
  • Remove and replace worn or broken machine parts, using hand tools.
  • Compute numbers, widths, and angles of cutting tools, micrometers, scales, and gauges, and adjust tools to produce specified cuts.
  • Study blueprints or layouts of metal workpieces to determine grinding procedures, and to plan machine setups and operational sequences.
  • Turn valves to direct flow of coolant against cutting wheels and workpieces during grinding.
  • Fit parts together in preassembly to ensure that dimensions are accurate.
  • Inspect dies to detect defects, assess wear, and verify specifications, using micrometers, steel gauge pins, and loupes.
  • Duplicate workpiece contours, using tracer attachments.
  • Straighten workpieces and remove dents, using straightening presses and hammers.
  • Attach workpieces to grinding machines and form specified sections and repair cracks, using welding or brazing equipment.
  • Place workpieces in electroplating solutions or apply pigments to surfaces of workpieces to highlight ridges and grooves.

  • Tools & Technology:

  • Air pressure gauges
  • Automatic metalworking lathes
  • Bench grinding wheels
  • Computer numerically controlled CNC grinders
  • Counterbores
  • Cutter grinders
  • Dial bore gauges
  • Dial indicators
  • Digital angle gauges
  • Digital calipers
  • Digital micrometers
  • Digital radius gauges
  • Drill grinders
  • Fixed overhead cranes
  • Gauge block sets
  • Hand reamer sets
  • Industrial bench grinders
  • Machining centers
  • Magnetic chucks
  • Metal broaching machinery
  • Optical comparators
  • Power drills
  • Protractors
  • Solid milling cutters
  • Surface grinding machines
  • Tool grinders
  • Vernier calipers
  • Wheeled forklifts
  • ANCA ToolRoom
  • EdgeCam software
  • Zoller software

  • production

    industry stats

    SOC: 51-0000

    Total Employed: 9,073,290

    Average Annual Salary: $36,220