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View Full Version : What's a good East Coast machinists' salary?



Doc Nickel
03-13-2005, 12:35 AM
I know of a job opportunity in New Jersey for a skilled machinist. They're looking for someone to help fill out an R&D department, mainly machining one-off parts for prototypes and test mules, but also doing a fair chunk of the designing/inventing and probably a little troubleshooting of designs as well.

Big company, fast-moving, has their own production facilities, the R&D department will be tasked to literally invent gadgets for the production side to build and sell. Very good market, steady growth that will likely hold fairly well for the next few years at least.

However, the offered salary strikes me as... well, pretty low. A number significantly below anything listed as a starting-salary offer on Monster.com for the same area, or as a median-wage listed on Yahoo Jobs.

What's a fair, reasonable salary for an experienced (5-10 yr.) machinist and designer/developer for that position? Hard numbers would be great, but I'm also looking for general ranges as well.

Thanks.

Doc.

JCHannum
03-13-2005, 12:47 AM
What part of New Jersey? There is a very significant difference between the North, New York area and South Jersey in terms of cost of living and wages.

Doc Nickel
03-13-2005, 12:55 AM
Within 25 minutes of the outskirts/suburbs of Philly, from what I understand.

Doc.

precisionworks
03-13-2005, 01:17 AM
Here's the page from Salary.com for Level III Machinist in Philly:

http://swz.salary.com/salarywizard/layoutscripts/swzl_compresult.asp?narrowcode=SC06&jobcode=SC16000022&metrocode=132&metro=Philadelphia&state=Pennsylvania&geo=Philadelphia,%20Penn sylvania&jobtitle=Machinist%20III&narrowdesc=Skilled%20and%20Trades#bottom

torker
03-13-2005, 01:52 AM
What's up Doc...you leavin "The North" ?

Doc Nickel
03-13-2005, 02:54 AM
Don't know. Had an offer from a fellow that came to me, specifically, due to what he's seen of my skill and capabilities. I insisted I didn't want to haggle or dicker, he should just name a salary. He haggled anyway, so I dickered in return, and when a number was finally mentioned, my first impression was that a full-timer at McDonalds' could make more.

We sparred a bit more, things got heated, he finally revealed what I'd suspected all along, that the boss just wanted a button-pusher/handle-turner, and from the price, one straight out of school and willing to take that little just because the job was "cool".

He's tired of arguing with me, I'm tired of arguing with him, and they didn't come anywhere near to offering me enough to make me leave a paid-for house and shop, move 6,000 miles and live in an apartment.

In the meantime, I've checked Yahoo Jobs, Monster.com and a couple of other resources, and the median wage for a machinist with some experience averages an easy 20% to 30% over their "best, if I can maybe get it okayed with the boss" price, and a solid 50% more than their first numbers.

So I figured I'd poke around and see what you guys know of the pricing scale. From what little I've gathered so far, in a couple of posts like this, that the Monster/Yahoo values are not out of line, and are actually pretty close.

Doc.

HTRN
03-13-2005, 03:54 AM
I work in NJ as a machinist and I can tell you, the pay sucks. I think it's mostly due to the attitude that they can replace you with immigrants and will offer you as little as possible. I currently make $13/hr, but I went to the interview asking $17/hr. Doc, I don't know what they offered you, but living in the Trenton area isn't cheap. figure a grand a month for an apartment, plus utils. and wait till you see what car insurance will cost you... Doc, did this job mention overtime at all? Alot of the shops I've worked in have had a 60-70hr workweek as typical.


HTRN

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This Old Shed (http://http:thisoldshed.tripod.com)

mbensema
03-13-2005, 09:02 AM
I can't comment on the pay other then what I have seen in Monster, but if you do decide to take the job, make sure you are comfortable moving to a city environment along with the attitudes that come with it. I lived in a suburban area of NJ before moving to CT last year and can tell you your patience will run thin very quick. There is more congestion then you can imagine and as already stated, prices are outrageous, even 30+ miles away from the cities. If you can put up with the commute, living in PA or further south in NJ you can find decent prices, but you will blow that in your commuting costs.

If you are serious about moving there, take a look the housing prices before commiting and it wouldn't hurt to get an insurance quote for your car. Expect to pay at least $1000 per car and if you have had any accidents recently, you might not be able to get insurance at any price.

kap pullen
03-13-2005, 09:09 AM
Doc,

Does the 5-10 year you stated include time in apprenticeship? or after?

Htrn, it sounds like you'er getting ripped.

kap

IOWOLF
03-13-2005, 09:28 AM
From what I know of the East coast, there is not a good east coast wage nothing is worth going east.If you dont beleive me look at HTRN's reply, nothing against him, but it seems to be the general attitude.

IMHO

bob308
03-13-2005, 10:29 AM
i live in south central pa. and i hear of all the high paying jos but never find them. i was running a tool room fixing dies, making weld fixtures. making repare parts for the machines. was making 13.25 hour.the .25 was a yearly raise after i did 2 producton changes the saves them over $60,000 a year. i dont work there any more.
i see jobs around here in the paper forklift drivers and assemablers 11-12 hour. welders 10 a hour a little mixed up i think.

pete913
03-13-2005, 10:39 AM
I hear all this high wage talk about the east and west coast too, have for most of my life. Once you start getting right down to cases about living expenses, mortgages and home prices, car insurance in a world packed like sardines, it sorta loses its charm, and the wages ain't all that hot either.

Paul Alciatore
03-13-2005, 06:13 PM
I hate to say it but I think that machinists are grossly underpaid. If you want to make the big bucks, you have to learn how to s**** people.

Paul A.

hoffman
03-13-2005, 08:04 PM
You have to figure that the man paying his guy $15/hr is probably actually paying $25/hr with workers comp, insurance and paying someone to keep all of it straight. Add to that vacation and sick leave days/ year where he's paying someone NOT to be at work and it's probably higher...
Now figure in CHEAP shipping prices from asia, slave wages and unsafe working conditions for competitors.
It's hard to compete with that and still make any $$ for the owner or shareholders.
I KNOW NOTHING about running a business or paying people so I may be off base but I suspect I may be close.
Now that greedy American oilmen are about to control iraq's oil, fuel costs are going to skyrocket. Not sure what that's gonna do...

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Hoffman in Warner Robins Ga

IOWOLF
03-13-2005, 08:12 PM
YOU FORGOT if they have a parking lot for employees the free monthly parking fees in some areas it could be 60 to 80 bucks a month,thats.25 per hr.

x39
03-13-2005, 11:58 PM
Pay ranges all over the spectrum. A good friend of mine has thirty years of experience (card carrying journeyman)and knows how to weld. He hit the ceiling at $17.00/hr a few years back (DC area)and left the trade to work in IT (jumping from the frying pan into the fire?). Another friend of mine has a brother who lives in South Jersey and works in nearby Pennsylvania as a toolmaker for a medical instrument firm. I'm told he makes close to $70,000.00 per year.

HTRN
03-14-2005, 12:07 AM
IOWOLF, if you think I have a bad attitude about my rate of pay, you're right - I have close to ten years experience and a college degree in manufacturing to boot and I make less than my buddy's girlfriend at Costco. All this talk of how much it costs the employer, but how does the employee live on 1700/month? Average rents are in the four figures, I pay 65 bucks in gas a week to go to work, plus tolls, for what is basically Home Depot wages. I can't even afford medical at this point. This idea that the company is scrimping along is ludicrous. The average qoute rate for a CNC is 50 - 75 an hour. On an average day, I make four to five thousand dollars worth of parts. I'm at the point in my life where I'm killing myself for slave wages and have started looking for a VMC in earnest. Maybe you'd work in a shop for the "atomosphere" but I go there for the paycheck.


HTRN

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This Old Shed (http://http:thisoldshed.tripod.com)

kap pullen
03-14-2005, 12:10 AM
You're right.

It's all over the spectrum.

These days it is hard to convince a purchasing person that you can run anything they have.

One offered me 15 something, and I told her it would be an insult to even consider the offer.

Obviously, I didn't get that job.

I'm just a Dinosour anyway, and better be satisfied where I am.

My employer is in the Washington area looking for a cnc type.

They want you to walk in and run a Haas, or Fadel as well as Mastercam, or Pro-e. I think the scale will be around 20+.

It is short run, and prototyping work.

Contractor for NASA.

Send me a message.

kap

psomero
03-14-2005, 12:13 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by kap pullen:
You're right.

It's all over the spectrum.

These days it is hard to convince a purchasing person that you can run anything they have.

One offered me 15 something, and I told her it would be an insult to even consider the offer.

Obviously, I didn't get that job.

I'm just a Dinosour anyway, and better be satisfied where I am.

My employer is in the Washington area looking for a cnc type.

They want you to walk in and run a Haas, or Fadel as well as Mastercam, or Pro-e. I think the scale will be around 20+.

It is short run, and prototyping work.

Contractor for NASA.

Send me a message.

kap</font>

dang, gimme another three years to get outta college and i'd be all over that...

Doc Nickel
03-14-2005, 12:26 AM
Hey Precision, can you parse that URL a bit? This sideways-scrolling is getting somewhat annoying.

Thanks. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

Doc.

ARFF79
03-14-2005, 01:26 AM
Wages in the Pa, N.J, De. area have no rhyme or reason to them. Lenape Forge is a union shop. Makes parts for nuclear, aerospace and defence industries. I believe that the top rate is about $16.00 per hour for machinists, with senior maint.(electrial) personel making just about a dollar more. Another shop in the area does repair work on large industrial equipment with an emphasis on pumps and valves and they pay in the $18-$24 range with benifits and are non-union. Most job shops in the area pay around $10-$14 per hour some with benifits some without most work 60 hours a week 6 days a week. My friend with the screw machine shop is down to 1 full time and 1 part time employee along withhimself. He says that things are stable to improving, but that the margins are getting real thin, even after going to mostly CNC and expanding into milling work to increase his flexability for his cutomers.

My daughter make $14.00 an hour placing people in a nursing homes and care facilities, 40 hour week with benifits, clean work area A/c in the summer warm in the winter.She spends about half a day on the phone the rest on a computer. EMT-P's nurses and others in the healthcare area seem to have a lock on the higher wages. local papers only have 2 or 3 adds for machinists, but can't seem to find enough space for all the ads for health care and computer tech people wanted. My brother is in computers and says the rates of pay are dropping both because of the overseas outsourcing and the fact that everone getting out of college seems to have a degree in computing.

The cost of living in the Philly/South-central NJ area varies from moderate to high, with high being the opperative for the closer you get to the jobs, unless you wish to live in an area that would make Bagdad look safe. The closer you are to Philadelphia the higher your car insurance gets. Figure to spend $800-$1200 every 6 months in Pa for bare bones coverage in and around the city(30 mile radius). Taxes are another topic all together.

Doc if you can't get them to pay at least $18.00 plus benifits it may not be in your best interest to relocate. Just my slant on things. We each have to live our own lives and do what we think is right for us.

[This message has been edited by ARFF79 (edited 03-14-2005).]

fixxit
03-14-2005, 02:53 AM
Doc, the density and congestion of New Jersey has to be experienced to be believed. Housing and apartment prices are high. Civility and courtesy on the roads are low.

I'm in the Biotech industry, I have a full time machinist who is getting about 47K per year (roughly $24.00 per hour). Plus three weeks vacation, full medical, prescription and retirement benefits worth about another 15K. He is worth every cent, I'm really lucky to have him.

I hope that this puts things in perspective.

Doc Nickel
03-14-2005, 05:42 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by ARFF79:
Doc if you can't get them to pay at least $18.00 plus benifits it may not be in your best interest to relocate.</font>

-Benefits were never mentioned or even hinted. Couldn't tell you what they might have had in that regard. Might have been impressive, but considering their starting offer was about two-thirds your number there, I can probably be forgiven for harboring a doubt.


<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Doc, the density and congestion of New Jersey has to be experienced to be believed. Housing and apartment prices are high. Civility and courtesy on the roads are low.</font>

-That was another thing. I'm not a city person, though the company is apparently located outside any big city or even large town, from what I understand. 'Course, I'm Alaskan, and we have a full fifth of the entire United States' landmass, and the second-lowest population, so even 'large town' is a relative descriptor here. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

Congestion and city life was less a worry than the overall cost of living. I'm lucky enough to have a very low cost of living, even counting gas, food and so on. Even a tiny efficiency apartment in a rural area would be three or four times more per month than I pay now (which includes a large house, big seperate shop and a not-inconsiderable array of tooling.) To be "happy" though, I'd need room for those tools, not just an apartment, and that means my monthly cost of living could be eight times what I pay now, without anything special or fancy.

Doc.

bob308
03-14-2005, 07:10 AM
the grass is aways greener on the other side of the fence. take a trip down to the area and see what it is like. check out rents. call your ins. man and get a price on car ins. and get everything on paper from the company about wages ins. vacation. then make your discsion.

jero100
03-14-2005, 07:23 AM
The oppurtunities are greathere in West Tenn. Specifically the Memphis area.
There are about a half dozen medical manufacturers supporting about a dozen job shops with salaries topping out at $20-$22 for operators and over $24 for machinists.
Great hunting and fishing locally, the standard of living in the surrounding counties is great. (Shelby county itself sucks though)
We have about 6-8 operator jobs open and 1 in my department (R&D) and most of the time they'll even pony up relocation expenses.
They've depleted the market for machinists and everyone is clamoring to find them.

jcurrell
03-14-2005, 08:23 AM
Here in the Toronto area they say there is a shortage of skilled trades , but anyone that can do the math to be a machinist can quickly figure out there is no future in it when you look at workopolis.

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BillH
03-14-2005, 11:49 AM
You must be out of your mind if you want to move to the North East. Theres so many immigrants here, they will let you go and hire an Indian who will work for half of what you would with a smile on their face. Ofcourse if you happen to come here, I suggest you go to Syracuse and jump on the Cuomo express and look at all the abandonned brick factories that higher taxes drove out. I'm a historian as a hobby, and I love walking thru all the old ruins of factories, looking at abandoned railroad spurs, and taking pictures. But at the same time it also hurts to see what was once a powerhouse lay in ruins.
Yeh the wages are all over the place, theres a few blue collar jobs here where they make 70K + a year, but you will pay for it out your butt in taxes. Only jobs here that pay well are white collar jobs, and thats only if you got a masters degree, and a bunch of certifications and what not. Even then, the white crap that falls down in the winter, the traffic, high taxes, and draconian gun laws that restrict your 2nd ammendment rights, why do you want to move here?
Let me tell you this, in CT, people are leaving this state like crazy, but the population has risen. You know why? All immigrants rushing in here. They can have this state for all I care.
OH and the people who stay in this state? You know why? Most of them work for the State. I Think its either 1/2 or 2/3rds of this States population is government jobs. Don't think New Jersey is any different, infact, its even more of a crap hole. Upstate NY is very beutiful area, I love it up there, but it is a wellfare state, you have to ask yourself, "where do all these people work?" Honestly, I dont know.

Oh yeh, another reason you dont want to move here. Have a family, kids? Want them one day? You like walking in the woods? Playing in the yard? Well Lyme disease is VERY rampant here, especially in CT. You get bitten by a tick, and not notice the rash, and a few years go by, your life will be ruined. You want your kids getting that disease? I may keep editing this message because I constantly think of new reasons why this place sucks.

[This message has been edited by BillH (edited 03-14-2005).]

[This message has been edited by BillH (edited 03-14-2005).]

kap pullen
03-14-2005, 01:06 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by BillH:
You must be out of your mind if you want to move to the North East. Theres so many immigrants here, they will let you go and hire an Indian who will work for half of what you would with a smile on their face. Ofcourse if you happen to come here, I suggest you go to Syracuse and jump on the Cuomo express and look at all the abandonned brick factories that higher taxes drove out. I'm a historian as a hobby, and I love walking thru all the old ruins of factories, looking at abandoned railroad spurs, and taking pictures. But at the same time it also hurts to see what was once a powerhouse lay in ruins.
Yeh the wages are all over the place, theres a few blue collar jobs here where they make 70K + a year, but you will pay for it out your butt in taxes. Only jobs here that pay well are white collar jobs, and thats only if you got a masters degree, and a bunch of certifications and what not. Even then, the white crap that falls down in the winter, the traffic, high taxes, and draconian gun laws that restrict your 2nd ammendment rights, why do you want to move here?
Let me tell you this, in CT, people are leaving this state like crazy, but the population has risen. You know why? All immigrants rushing in here. They can have this state for all I care.
OH and the people who stay in this state? You know why? Most of them work for the State. I Think its either 1/2 or 2/3rds of this States population is government jobs. Don't think New Jersey is any different, infact, its even more of a crap hole. Upstate NY is very beutiful area, I love it up there, but it is a wellfare state, you have to ask yourself, "where do all these people work?" Honestly, I dont know.

Oh yeh, another reason you dont want to move here. Have a family, kids? Want them one day? You like walking in the woods? Playing in the yard? Well Lyme disease is VERY rampant here, especially in CT. You get bitten by a tick, and not notice the rash, and a few years go by, your life will be ruined. You want your kids getting that disease? I may keep editing this message because I constantly think of new reasons why this place sucks.

[This message has been edited by BillH (edited 03-14-2005).]

[This message has been edited by BillH (edited 03-14-2005).]</font>

I admire a man with strong convictions.

kap

IOWOLF
03-14-2005, 03:21 PM
LOOK ON MONSTER.COM LOOK IN COST OF LIVING wizard. nice tool.

spope14
03-14-2005, 04:10 PM
Hey, I live in Northern New england. The pay is fair, perhaps above the going rate for almost every other job but for nurse, Dr., or that type of thing. Cost of houses is low in my area, recreation possibilities for outsdoormen, skiiers, hikers, fishing, boating are high. Fuel oil is high, but overall a bit lower than national average.

You lose in the costs of fuel, winter, and such, but overall, i am about at the same cost of living as anywhere in VT. My city is small urban of 15 to 16k people, so thre may be travel to a job.

jobs are available, pay is all over th place, and your actual rates vary according o cost of living. You will not go hungry being a machinist in this area, for the predominent machining is small run, R&D, or speciality at this point, though big production firms such as Hypertherm, Timken, Rugers, Thermal dymanics are still here for that type of person.

Ok, we have the Lyme disease in small quantity, as does about 50% of the country at this point. We have West Nile possibilities each year. It gets damnedable cold here at times. However, we do not have an overabundance, if any of rattlesnakes, watermoccasins, cottonmouths, guila monsters, scorpions, or man eating gators. A severe lack overall of creepy crawlies. also, the immigrants are not too thrilled with our area as it is far away from urbania.

we have great foilage seasons, and summers are nice.

So we have to deal with our neighbors over th border and thir overly liberal thoughts (VT, Not canada), but this is spice in life I guess.....

Guess i like the east, at least my area. Two hours away from Boston, but sems like a universe away. 3 1/2 hours from NYC, but that is also a universe away but for when things hit there, and NYC migrates to our area in droves. I moved here from northern colo. and Wyoming because every freaking body wanted to live where my family lived and homesteaded for generations, and in the end, all you could call a local was "waiter". Yes, about 50 to 300 people applying for every quality job, and locals were given hind tit when i was there, espcially if you were a local who went to the college - the out of towners who also went got the cream jobs - so I had the chioce - pick up and move where I could make honest money - unlike many other locals who were friends who had to go into illicit dealing (I do not at all have that in me) just to pay rent.

This is not jersey or the I-95 sprawl that goes from Springfield Ma., Concord NH, and all along the coast, i am 90 miles inland on the VT /NH border, and quite happy - and the recreation is closer than it ever was to me in the west in the strip city of Ft. collins to Colo. Springs then Pueblo my old home became.

just a different view..... If you have gone to the American Precision Museum from the southerly direction, you have passed two miles from my house.

[This message has been edited by spope14 (edited 03-14-2005).]

BillH
03-14-2005, 10:21 PM
Spope, the further north you are from NYC, the nicer it is, but the colder it is, and suckier the winters.
The townhouse we rent is 1800$ a month, and thats a deal. I saw a ranch for sale in Georgia with 120+ acres of land for 640k. In Fairfield county here, you know what 640K will buy? A 4 bedroom colonial with 2 acres of land, and your taxes will be near 15k a year, atleast in Redding CT, where we used to live.

spope14
03-14-2005, 11:03 PM
I do not mind the cold. It was the crazy people in the west, all of them fom the west coast and east coast moving there to get their piece that drove me out. That, and going out each morning and having to worry about rattlesnakes, scorpions, and that crap.

Loved it while there. On a side note, where i am is really clean. My last tip to Ft. Collins and denver, i had o explain to my 18 and 8 year olds what smog was, and what that guy laying aound in the park was -a wino.

All said, I do personally miss the big city, the winos, bag ladies, the smog, the hustle and bustle, traffic. Out of town, th critters that look to kill you like snakes, Mtn. Lions, and uch. sounds like I am being sarcastic, but this is how i grew up for a major part of my life, and it is true. on my trips to Boston now, I kind of like diving into six lanes of traffic in rush hour at 75 MPH, window open, cursing, smelling the smog, and then standing looking up at the tall buildings. Gets my adreneline going, My wife says I change, and I show i am truly having fun. BUT then I go home, and remember my family is better for it, and I have a slow pace that suits me just fine after all, and I forget to lock my car doors.

spope14
03-14-2005, 11:05 PM
Please forgive my typos on my posts. My Carpel Tunnel is on overtime tonight, and it is a pain to edit these out. I will try later, and delete this post.

Thanks for your indulgence, thought I should post this as an FYI.

kap pullen
03-15-2005, 08:14 AM
Doc,

I didn't see any reply in my e-mail box about the NASA contracting job in DC area.

Guess you're not really looking for a job anyway.

Just blowing off steam?

Always wonder about a machinist that calls himself Doc.

I knew a "Doctor Of Metal" once.

He had his own business cards printed and all.

Maybe it impresses the girls.

kap

x39
03-15-2005, 09:03 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by BillH:
the nicer it is, but the colder it is, and suckier the winters.</font>

Bill, please keep telling people this, it keeps the riff-raff out of Maine! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//wink.gif

BillH
03-15-2005, 10:26 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by x39:
Bill, please keep telling people this, it keeps the riff-raff out of Maine! http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//wink.gif</font>

Just like the people in Seattle who tell everyone that it rains all the time.
But honestly, I never want to see snow or walk outside and have the cold slap me in the face ever again.

[This message has been edited by BillH (edited 03-15-2005).]

dsergison
03-15-2005, 11:01 AM
hey Kap, I have a brother who is a doctor of metal. Has his Phd in metalurgy.

play nice.

kap pullen
03-15-2005, 12:59 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by dsergison:
hey Kap, I have a brother who is a doctor of metal. Has his Phd in metalurgy.

play nice.</font>

Hey Dsergison

It may be more of an insult to your brother,

that there people out there who did not put the years and work your brother did,

and claim to be doctors.

This "Doctor of Metal"I was referring to was two years behind me in the machinists apprenticeship.

have a nice day

kap pullen



[This message has been edited by kap pullen (edited 03-15-2005).]

kap pullen
03-15-2005, 01:13 PM
Cobb just posted this on the practical machinist site under Master Machinists.

cobb
Aluminum
Member # 1816

Rate Member posted 03-15-2005 09:55 AM
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I was told long ago by someone, "Son if you have to wear a sign around your neck that says you are, then chances are, you ain't"
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Posts: 99 | IP: Logged

"Shoe fits, wear it" my dad used to say..

Thanks cobb

Have a nice day!

kap

dsergison
03-15-2005, 01:29 PM
just ribbing you Kap. lookes like you were jabing at Doc. I don't know how he came about that nickname. I know he is considered a "doctor of paintball stuff" in another life. perhaps he can enlighten us about the moniker? Doubtfull it's purpose is to pick up chicks.

On several forums in the last six months I've been following threads of the type -who has the right to call themselves what- from "master machnist" to Engineer. some decent flame war material.

Dan.

andypullen
03-15-2005, 03:20 PM
I'll have to jump in on this one....That Cobb's got it right.

Seems like the guys who have the most bluster are the ones with the least ability...I've worked with several of the bragging type. And, they almost always show how little they know after a little time.

I don't know anything about Doc Nickel. His questions and responses have been pretty intelligent in my opinion.

Now to engineers. Engineers equal machinists in Britain. At least in terminology. Correct me if I'm wrong John S. or Alistair.

I worked for a company that had a plant in England with a sister plant here in the States. They made decorative tins. The Chief Engineer couldn't machine his way out of a wet paper bag. Every machine he touched had a DEEP cutter mark in it somewhere when he was finished with a job. And the part was usually wrong. He would "set up" a job and get frustrated with it and call somebody else to finish setting it up or to finish running the part.

My main complaint with engineers today is that very few of them are required to work in the real world in the shop for any period of time. I've had rework parts for bad drawings numerous times. As recently as last week. I've been working on a submersible at my side job. The top mounting plate drawing has a thickness of .375" with .437" deep counterbores in it....Excuse my rant...

As to machinist wages; none of us are paid enough. Look at carpenters for example. If they screw up a 2x4; so what. How much does a 2x4 cost? A couple bucks...I've made parts from material costing thousands of dollars. As have quite a few of the others here. The skill level required to work in this trade unsupervised is immense.

A friend of mine (and Kap's) tells a story from time to time: A dentist came to him and asked if he could come over to his shop for a few weeks to learn how to be a machinist. This friend, who I would consider to be a "master machinist" asked the dentist if he could come to the dentist's office for a couple of weeks to learn how to be a dentist. The dentist was appalled that a "lowly" machinist would ask such a question. The machinist then told the dentist it takes as long as if not longer to learn how to be a machinist as it does to be a dentist.

Andy Pullen

lynnl
03-15-2005, 03:57 PM
Hell, learning to be a dentist would be a snap. ...there's only 32 different workpieces you'll ever encounter. And they come with their own hold-downs at that!

wato
03-15-2005, 06:39 PM
Don't know how it will pan out over there but down here. The lowpay rates over the years has now led to a big shortage of tradesmen. The companies are paying for it now with many mine sites having to pay up to $37au per/h to get people. Not unusual to be getting $120,000au p/year on a 2weeks on 1 week off basis in the mines.
just thought that may be of interest.
Cheers.

andypullen
03-16-2005, 08:21 AM
I read a story somewhere some years ago that said the average age of a machinist in the States was 62 or 63. Every now and then there's a story on the news or in the newspaper about the shortage of machinists.

At my children's school the moms all kind of hang around and chat before or after school. My wife was talking to one of the moms one afternoon who works for a large local spice company. She's a recruiter. This woman asked my wife what I do for a living and when my wife told her I'm a machinist; this woman practically begged me through her to come in for an interview. They are short on maintenance people and are willing to pay top dollar for good people. (I've been working in maintenance for many years, btw.) If there are any maintenance machinists in the Baltimore area who need a job; I may be able to help you out.

I see things getting better for a guy like me in this industry. I'm still reasonably young at 39. And, manual machine shop skills are going to be more in demand as time goes on. CNC is the trend, but I don't see manual equiptment going away completely.

My son has just started showing an interest in making things in metal. I may be able to give him some knowledge that will give him something to fall back on.

Andy Pullen

kap pullen
03-16-2005, 12:34 PM
Andy,
You must not have much to do today?

Dan,
I registered here in 2001.
Where you been all that time?

I just wonder how people pick names for themselves.

Like that guy bottomfeeder, and metalmite, They must not have much self confidance or something.

kap

metal mite
03-16-2005, 12:35 PM
kap pullen,

Kiss my gritts!

mite

dsergison
03-16-2005, 12:43 PM
hmm, my profile says I registered in 2004. that doesn't seem right.

I dunn-no must have been making chips? or didn't register for a while? I bought my mill in 2001.

My day work is pretty slow. got a lot of time between tasks.

my login is my name. Dan Sergison. simple... easy to stand by.

kap pullen
03-16-2005, 12:45 PM
metal mite,

You got a knot in your panties.

Get over it!

kap

andypullen
03-16-2005, 01:16 PM
Yeah, Kap,

Kinda slow today. I made about 600 spacers for the USDA lab yesterday. Part off and debur pvc tubing so they can glue a piece of filter paper on 1 side to measure how many spores penetrate. What kind of spores; I didn't ask. The lab assistant that picked them up was kindof cute...Almost the twin of a Major at USAMRIID.

Besides, I'm a bit lightheaded for some reason...Might be the antibiotics I'm on for bronchitus...I did do some conveyor parts for one of the mechanics and a table brace for the Colonel, though.

Metalmite,

You're going to piss off your alter ego....

Andy Pullen

spope14
03-17-2005, 05:01 PM
Holy cow!!!!! A simple question, and what a crazy bunch of responses!!!!!!

From what I have sen of Doc, and andy et.al, good folks.

machine shop machinists are getting to retirement age, this is too true. been offered 2 1/2X my salary to leave teaching, but alas, would lose my great big hobby shop and those students I am trying to train to take the jobs that pay better than mine, and would losre that chance to work my summers in the shops to learn more bcause they really want to move me aound to learn more.

And the weather in my neck of the northeast today: 56 degrees, sunny, snow melting, and spring is coming. No m'skitters, lots of blue skies. Feel the fishing bug coming on, time to make some spinners and spoons on the lathe and mill!!!!!!!

suprdvn
03-19-2005, 10:18 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by andypullen:
A friend of mine (and Kap's) tells a story from time to time: A dentist came to him and asked if he could come over to his shop for a few weeks to learn how to be a machinist. This friend, who I would consider to be a "master machinist" asked the dentist if he could come to the dentist's office for a couple of weeks to learn how to be a dentist. The dentist was appalled that a "lowly" machinist would ask such a question. The machinist then told the dentist it takes as long as if not longer to learn how to be a machinist as it does to be a dentist.

Andy Pullen</font>

It takes a few weeks to learn how to grind out a cavity and fill it. But it takes years to learn how NOT to say while doing it: Oh My God http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//eek.gif , Holy Sh**, Whoops, & F***. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

HTRN
03-19-2005, 01:47 PM
The man who taught me most of what I know as a machinist once told me that Tool and Die makers just start "getting good" about the time they're ready to retire.

He's fond of telling me that he's starting to get "decent" grinding endmills and he's 52!


HTRN

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