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Mechanics and repairmen make up one of the
largest and fastest growing occupational groups
in the Nation’s labor force. It is estimated that
in early 1963 there were more than 2%-million
mechanics and repairmen. These workers account
for about a third of all craftsmen, foremen, and
related workers. The more than 200 occupations
included in the mechanics and repairmen group
vary greatly in size, from those with several
hundred thousand workers to those with only a
few hundred workers. Automobile mechanics
make up the largest occupation, with 700,000 work­
ers— about a fourth of all mechanics and repair­
men. Other occupations with more than 100,000
workers each, include maintenance electrican,
appliance serviceman, telephone repairman (tele­
phone and P B X installer and repairman and
central office craftsman), airplane mechanic,
television and radio serviceman, and industrial
machinery repairman. (See chart 28.) On the
other hand, there are some maintenance and
repair specialties with relatively small numbers
of workers such as hearing-aid repairman, skilift mechanic, electric razor repairman, musical
instrument repairman, and X-ray equipment
Young men with mechanical aptitude who do
not intend to go to college may wish to consider
one of the maintenance and repair occupations
as a career. Most maintenance and repair jobs
present a variety of challenging problems. Many
persons find great satisfaction in working with
various kinds of equipment to find out why it
does not operate properly, and putting it into
good working condition. The employment outlook
is favorable for maintenance and repair occupa­
tions generally, during the remainder of the 1960’s
and in the longer run. Kapid employment growth
is anticipated for several occupations—including
instrument repairman, air-conditioning and re­
frigeration mechanic, television and radio serv­
iceman, and appliance serviceman. In addition
to the opportunities resulting from the growth
of the occupational group, tens of thousands of

C H A R T 28

REPAIR O C C U PA TIO N S.........

Auto m echanics

M aintenance electricians

A p p lian ce servicemen

Telephone and PBX
installers and repairm en
A irplane mechanics

Television and radio
servicem en
Industrial m achinery
repairm en

M echanics and repairmen
railroad and car shops 3
A ir-conditioning, h ea tin gan d
refrigeration m echanics
Business machine
Instrument repairm en

Diesel m echanics
W atch repairmen







Estim ated.


Includes central office craftsmen.


Includes railroad carmen and line
and signal maintenance men-.

job openings will occur annually because of the
need to replace experienced workers who trans­
fer to other occupations, retire, or die.
Earnings of mechanics and repairmen com­
pare favorably with those of other manual work­
ers. Opportunities for advancement to super­
visory positions are good for workers in many
maintenance occupations. Workers in certain
maintenance and repair occupations, particularly
automobile mechanic and radio and television serv­
iceman, are able to go into business for them­
selves either on a part-time or full-time basis.



Mechanics and repairmen usually work yearround and generally they are less affected by
fluctuations in business activity than other man­
ual workers. Also, they often are able to transfer
from one firm or industry to another or from one
type of maintenance work to another.
This chapter includes statements on the follow­
ing maintenance and repair workers: Air-condi­
tioning and refrigeration mechanics, appliance
servicemen, automobile mechanics, business ma­
chine servicemen, diesel mechanics, industrial
machinery repairmen, instrument repairmen,

maintenance electricians, millwrights, television
and radio servicemen, and watch repairmen.
Other maintenance and repair occupations are
discussed in other chapters in this Handbook.
For example, airplane mechanics are discussed
in the chapter on Occupations in Civil Aviation;
telephone and P B X installers and repairmen and
central office craftsmen, in Occupations in the
Telephone Industry; and carmen, and line and
signal maintenance men, in Occupations in the
Railroad Industry. (See index for page num­

Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Mechanics
Nature of Work
The growing use of air-conditioning and re­
frigeration equipment throughout the Nation
is providing many job opportunities for skilled
mechanics who install and repair such equip­
ment in office buildings, factories, homes, food
stores, restaurants, and other establishments.
(This chapter does not discuss mechanics who
work on railroad, truck, automotive, or marine
air-conditioning and refrigeration equipment.)
In installing new air-conditioning or refrig­
eration equipment, the mechanic puts the motors,
condensers, and dehumidifiers in proper posi­
tion, following design specifications. He con­
nects duct work, refrigerant lines and other
piping, and then connects the equipment to an
electrical power source. He installs electrical
controls and checks the electric power entering
the motor. After completing the installation and
connecting the recording and gaging devices, the
mechanic starts the unit and tests it for proper
performance and for leaks. He also adjusts the
pumps, dehumidifiers, filters, and other compo­
nents in order to obtain the most efficient per­
The mechanic may install air-conditioning
equipment ranging from small, self-contained
units to large central-plant-type systems. On
small installations, he may have to prepare his
own working diagrams and do simple layout
work, such as measuring and cutting pipe. On
large installation jobs, the mechanic must read
and interpret blueprints or drawings.
Mechanics engaged in maintenance work reg­

ularly lubricate machinery, replenish liquid re­
frigerant, adjust valves, and examine other parts
of the equipment to detect leaks and other de­
fects. When air-conditioning and refrigeration
equipment breaks down, the mechanic must diag­
nose the cause and make the necessary repairs.
In looking for defects, he may take the motor
apart, removing such parts as springs and
brushes. After the cause of the trouble has been
located and the defected part repaired or re­
placed, the mechanic reassembles the unit. He
also may make electrical repairs in connection
with his work. The mechanic uses tools and
equipment, such as electric drills, soldering
torches, pipe benders, hammers, screwdrivers,
pliers, and testing devices, such as leak detectors
and test lights.
Sometimes, particularly where the installation
or repair o f a large air-conditioning or refrig­
eration system is involved, certain phases of the
work may be performed by other craftsmen. On
a large central-plant installation, for example,
the duct work might be done by sheet-metal
workers; the electrical work by electricians; and
the installation of piping, condensers, and other
components by pipefitters.

Where Employed
A considerable number of air-conditioning and
refrigeration mechanics are employed in shops
that specialize in the repair and maintenance
of commercial, industrial, and home air-condi­
tioning and refrigeration equipment. Others work
for construction companies, air-conditioning or



Air-conditioning mechanic insulates refrigerant lines of airconditioner

refrigeration equipment manufacturers, heating
and air-conditioning contractors, and dealers.
Some are employed by department stores, hotels,
restaurant and food store chains, factories, ware­
houses, and other establishments large enough to
require full-time maintenance men. Many mechan­
ics have opened their own repair shops.
Because of the widespread use of air-condition­
ing and refrigeration equipment, these workers
are employed in all parts of the country. How­
ever, they are employed mainly in the large
cities where most of the large commercial and
industrial establishments are located. New York,
Texas, California, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Illi­
nois lead the number o f these workers.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Most air-conditioning and refrigeration me­
chanics start as helpers and acquire the skills
of their trade informally by working for several
years with experienced craftsmen. Usually the
beginner’s work consists o f lifting, loading,
cleaning up, and performing relatively simple
tasks such as insulating refrigerant lines. As
trainees gain experience, they are given pro­
gressively more complicated tasks such as install­
ing pumps and checking electrical circuits.
Mechanical aptitude and the ability to under­
stand and work with electricity are important
qualifications for workers in this occupation.
Good physical condition is also important because
692-408 0— 63--- 27

mechanics are often required to lift and move
heavy equipment. A growing number of em­
ployers prefer to hire high school graduates who
have had courses in mathematics, physics, and
blueprint reading.
Young persons interested in advancing to
higher level air-conditioning and refrigeration
jobs as technicians or foremen are frequently
advised by training authorities to attend a tech­
nical institute. In these schools, students are
taught to design and construct, as well as to
install, operate, maintain, and repair, all types
o f air-conditioning and refrigeration equipment.
They also take courses in mathematics, physics,
electricity, and mechanical drawing. Additional
information about air-conditioning and refrig­
eration technicians appears in the chapter on
Technicians. (See index for page number.)

Employment Outlook
A rapid growth in the number o f jobs for these
mechanics, especially those doing air-condition­
ing work, is anticipated during the 1960’s and
in the longer run because of a continuing in­
crease in the use of air-conditioning and refrig­
eration equipment. In addition, many job open­
ings will also arise as experienced workers retire,
die, or transfer to other lines o f work.
The use of air conditioning in offices and stores
is expected to increase very greatly. The num­
ber o f centrally installed air-conditioning units
in homes, which almost doubled between 1958
and 1962, is also expected to continue to increase
rapidly during the next 10 to 15 years. The use
o f refrigeration as a means of preserving food
and other perishable items has grown greatly in
recent years. Refrigeration also is becoming
increasingly important in the manufacture of
such products as synthetic rubber, oil, high-test
gasoline, medicine, and drugs.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Earnings for air-conditioning and refrigera­
tion mechanics are not available on a national
basis. Information obtained from a small number
o f employers in late 1962, however, indicated that
beginning rates for helpers ranged from $1.25
to $1.75 per hour and the top rates for mechanics
ranged from $3 to $3.50 per hour. The rates o f



pay for trainees and mechanics depended on fac­
tors such as their level of skill, the size and type
of equipment they worked on, the type of w ork
they did, and the type of establishment in which
they were employed. For example, mechanics
who installed large commercial refrigeration and
air-conditioning systems frequently had higher
hourly rates of pay than those who installed
small commercial and residential systems.
Although most employers try to maintain the
same work force throughout the year, they may
have to lay off some mechanics during the winter
months. In air-conditioning and refrigeration
contractor shops that also install and repair
heating equipment, the mechanics may work on

heating equipment during the winter months.
Most mechanics work a 40-hour week. However,
during the summer months they must often work
overtime or at irregular hours when refrigeration
or air-conditioning equipment breaks down.
Overtime work in most shops is paid for at time
and one-half the regular rate.
Mechanics are sometimes required to work at
great heights while installing new equipment.
They may also work in awkward or cramped
positions in order to reach motors or other parts
of the equipment they are repairing. Common
hazards in this trade include electrical shock,
torch burns, and those associated with the
handling of heavy equipment.

Appliance Servicemen
(D .O.T. 5-83.043)

Nature of Work
When washing machines, refrigerators, kitchen
ranges, toasters, vacuum cleaners, and the many
other electric and gas appliances used in homes
today do not run properly, appliance service­
men repair them. The repair of large and
complicated appliances such as refrigerators and
washing machines (which may have as many as
30 electrical connections in the control unit alone)
is considerably more difficult than the repair of
small appliances such as toasters and food mix­
ers. However, all the work performed by appli­
ance servicemen involves finding why appliances
are not operating properly and then installing
new parts or making adjustments.
To learn why an appliance is not operating
properly, appliance servicemen first find out from
customers what happened when it was last turned
on. They often check the appliance by starting
it and listening for loud humming, grinding, or
other unusual noises, which might tell them what
part of the appliance is not working properly.
Sometimes servicemen look specifically for com­
mon signs of trouble, such as cracks in rubber
hose, or they turn gears or other moving parts
of appliances to see if they are jammed or too
tight. Appliance servicemen find other causes of
trouble by using special tools and testing devices.

After servicemen find what is wrong with
appliances, they make the necessary repairs. Fre­
quently, this involves replacing parts, such as
electric cords, that receive extra hard wear.
Sometimes servicemen clean parts; for example,
they remove lint that has clogged a washing
machine drain. In removing old parts and put­
ting in new parts, appliance servicemen use not
only handtools, such as screwdrivers, pliers, and
wrenches, but also special tools designed for
particular appliances.
An important part of the work of appliance
servicemen is dealing personally with customers.
They make service calls to homes and answer
customers’ questions and complaints about
appliances. Appliance servicemen frequently
advise customers about the care and use of their
appliances, because many breakdowns are caused
by improper use. For example, they may remind
housewives how many pounds of clothing can be
washed at one time in automatic washing
machines, or how to stack dishes in dishwashers.
Appliance servicemen have considerable variety
in their work. They drive light trucks or auto­
mobiles, some of which are equipped with twoway radios. They give estimates to customers
on the cost of repair jobs, and keep records of
parts used and hours worked on each repair
job. Also, they sometimes order parts and sell
new or used appliances.


Serviceman installs surface unit in electric range

Where Employed
Approximately 165,000 appliance servicemen
were employed in early 1963. They work in
almost every city and town because the appliances
they repair are used everywhere. A large pro­
portion work in independent repair shops, many
of which are owned and operated by appliance
Another large proportion are
employed by appliance dealers, department stores,
and other firms that sell and service appliances.
A substantial number work for gas and elec­
tric utility companies, and a few thousand are
employed by appliance manufacturers who oper­
ate service centers in most large cities. An increas­
ing number of appliance servicemen are employed
by firms that service coin-operated washing
machines and, in recent years, coin-operated dry
cleaning machines as well.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Appliance servicemen are usually hired as
helpers and acquire their skills through on-thejob training and work experience. Inexperienced
men are given relatively simple work assignments.
In some companies, they work for the first few
months mainly helping to install appliances in
customers’ homes, driving service trucks, and
learning street locations. In other companies, they
begin to learn the skills of appliance servicemen
by working in the shop, where they rebuild used

parts such as washing machine transmissions.
Gradually, trainees learn how motors, gears, and
other appliance parts operate. They progress
from simple repair jobs, such as replacing a
switch, to more difficult jobs, such as adjusting
automatic washing machine controls. In addition
to practical experience on the job, trainees fre­
quently receive classroom instruction given by
appliance manufacturers and local distributors.
Many trainees take correspondence courses in
basic electricity to increase their skills in
appliance repair.
Trainees are usually supervised closely for 6
to 12 months. By this time, most of them can
repair several kinds o f appliances on their own,
and they may be given responsibility for their
own service trucks and for expensive stocks of
appliance parts and tools. Appliance servicemen
usually need up to 3 years’ on-the-job experience
to become fully qualified. Many experienced
servicemen attend training classes (often on
company time) and study service manuals to
become familiar with new appliances and the
best ways to repair them.
Employers generally prefer applicants with
mechanical aptitude who are high school gradu­
ates and who have had high school or vocational
school courses in electricity or physics. They
must understand, in a practical way, how to use
equipment that measures electricity and how to
use such measurements in solving equations or
formulas that tell whether electrical currents in
appliances are flowing properly. Also important
in servicing appliances is a knowledge of wiring
diagrams which show electrical connections
between appliance parts.
Employers also look for men who can get along
well with customers. Employers emphasize that
mechanical skills are only part o f the qualifica­
tions for servicemen’s work. Servicemen must be
tactful and courteous. Sometimes this is difficult,
for example, when explaining to a customer the
right way to operate an appliance that has been
used incorrectly. Servicemen also are expected
to dress neatly and to avoid getting grease or
dirt on floors and furniture.
Appliance servicemen can be promoted to
foreman, assistant service manager, or service
manager. Preference is given to men who have
shown ability to get along well with other service­

men and with customers. A general knowledge
of bookkeeping and other subjects related to man­
aging a business is also helpful in getting ahead.
Servicemen who work for appliance manufac­
turers may advance to other higher paying jobs.
They may teach servicemen to repair new models
of appliances. They may also write service man­
uals. Because of their experience in repairing
appliances and dealing with all types of custom­
ers, appliance servicemen often become successful
appliance salesmen. Experienced appliance serv­
icemen may open their own sales or repair shop.

Employment Outlook
Employment of appliance servicemen is
expected to grow rapidly during the remainder
of the 1960’s and in the longer run. Most new
employment opportunities in this expanding occu­
pation will occur because more appliances will be
used and many new appliances will be more com­
plex and require greater maintenance and repair.
Some job openings will occur each year as a
result of the need to replace servicemen who are
promoted or who transfer to other fields of work.
Other opportunities will arise because of the
need to replace workers who die or retire.
Appliances have become an essential and larger
part of our daily living. Some homes now have
as many as several dozen or more gas and electric
appliances. The average American home has
many more than 10 or 15 years ago, as increasing
numbers o f refrigerators, washing machines, kitch­
en ranges, vacuum cleaners, food mixers, and
other standard appliances have been purchased.
In addition, appliances not widely used or not
even developed a few years ago have become
popular, such as room air conditioners, dishwash­
ers, food waste disposers, clothes dryers, dehu­
midifiers, coin-operated dry cleaning equipment,
and electric can openers.
Growing population and increasing numbers
of young married couples, who spend large
amounts of their incomes for homefumishings,
will continue to stimulate demand for appliances
during the next 10 to 15 years. Rising incomes
and living standards will lead to increased sales
o f appliances. Sales will be favorably affected
also by the introduction of new appliances and
of greater convenience and ease of operation in


The trend toward greater convenience and
more automatic operation of appliances has
tended to make them more complicated and to
that extent has made appliance repair work more
difficult. On the other hand, manufacturers are
designing appliances with more durable parts
that should need fewer repairs, and appliances
that can be taken apart more easily. In addition,
appliance manufacturers and other employers
are increasing the efficiency of servicemen through
more widespread and more effective training.
Despite these improvements, large numbers of
additional servicemen will be needed each year.
Mechanically inclined young men who are not
planning to attend college will find many oppor­
tunities in the growing appliance repair field.
Appliance servicemen who have a working knowl­
edge of electricity, and especially those who know
electronics, will be able to find a variety of good
jobs almost anywhere.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Nationwide wage data for some experienced
appliance servicemen in unionized shops show
that hourly wage rates in 1962 ranged from $1.75
to $3.43. The wide variation in rates is based on
differences in type of employing establishment,
locality of the job, and other factors. Appliance
servicemen employed by gas and electric utilities
had a higher wage range, from $2.49 to $3.91 an
hour. Many appliance servicemen work more than
40 hours a week and receive higher rates o f pay
for the overtime hours. They may also receive
commissions for sales leads.
Many appliance servicemen working for manu­
facturers’ service centers, gas and electric com­
panies, and other employers receive paid vaca­
tions and sick leave, health insurance, and other
benefits, as well as credit toward retirement pen­
sions. Some of these companies also sponsor
employee savings funds and contribute money to
the accounts of employees who participate.
The shops in which appliance servicemen work
are relatively quiet, well lighted, and adequately
ventilated. While repairing small appliances,
servicemen usually sit at benches. Working con­
ditions outside the shop vary considerably. Serv­
icemen sometimes work in narrow spaces, uncom­
fortable positions, and places that are not clean.



Servicemen who work with large appliances may
spend 1 or 2 hours a day driving in all kinds of
weather between the shops where they work and
customers’ homes.
Appliance repair work is generally safe,
although accidents are possible while the service­
man is driving, handling electrical parts, or lift­
ing or moving large appliances. Inexperienced
men are shown how to use tools safely and
instructed in simple precautions against electric
shock, such as keeping hands dry while handling
electric wires.

The work of appliance servicemen is often
performed with little direct supervision. This
feature of the job may appeal to many young

Where To Go for More Information
Further information about jobs in the appli­
ance service field may be obtained from local
appliance repair shops, appliance dealers, gas and
electric utility companies, and appliance manu­
facturers. Local vocational schools which offer
courses in appliance servicing, electricity, and
electronics also may provide helpful information.

Automobile Mechanics
(D .O.T. 5-81.000 through .999)

Nature of Work
Motor vehicles are kept in good running order
by automobile mechanics. These skilled workers
maintain and repair mechanical, electrical, and
body parts of trucks and buses as well as passenger
cars. They may also service other gasolinepowered equipment such as tractors. Automobile
mechanics make inspections and tests to determine
the causes of faulty operation, and repair or
replace defective parts to restore the vehicle to
proper operating condition. Typical maintenance
and repair jobs done by mechanics are tuning the
engine, replacing piston rings, alining the front
wheels, and adjusting or relining the brakes.
Automobile mechanics in the smaller shops are
usually qualified to perform a variety of repair
jobs, although a large number of other automobile
mechanics specialize in particular types of repair
work. For example, some mechanics do only
alinement and steering work, or work on certain
types of automatic transmissions. These mechan­
ics usually work in shops with different depart­
ments or in shops that specialize in particular
types of repair. These specialists, however, usu­
ally have an all-round knowledge of automotive
repair and, occasionally, may be called upon to
do other types of work. Body and fender repair­
men are specialists who do the shaping, finishing,
and replacing of sheet metal, and replacing of
trim and glass.
In making repairs, the mechanic uses many dif­
ferent kinds o f tools and equipment. These may

range from simple handtools, such as screwdrivers,
wrenches, and pliers, to complicated and expen­
sive machines and equipment which help the
mechanic find out why an automobile is not
operating properly and assist him in making
repairs. Some common examples of such equip­
ment are wheel alinement machines, spark plug
testers, engine analyzers, and headlight aimers.
In addition to these tools, repair manuals and
other technical publications are used to provide
instructions for making the more complex repairs.
Mechanics usually work by themselves. In
large shops, however, a skilled mechanic may be
assisted by a helper or an apprentice, and usually
works under the supervision o f a foreman or serv­
ice manager. Before actually doing the work,
mechanics in small shops may be required to
prepare estimates of the cost o f repairs, including
materials and labor. In larger shops, the shop
foreman, service salesmen, or service manager
generally prepares the cost estimate and tells the
mechanic what repairs to make.

Where Employed
The estimated 700,000 automobile mechanics
employed in early 1963 made up the largest repair
occupation. About 40 percent o f these workers
were employed in repair shops which made all
kinds of repairs or specialized in particular types
such as ignition repairs, body and fender work,
radiator service, and transmission and brake
repair work and adjustment. About 25 percent


Automobile mechanic uses testing equipment to tune up engine

were employed in the service departments of new
and used car dealers. A considerable number of
automobile mechanics were employed in gasoline
service stations where they usually made relatively
minor repairs and adjustments. Many mechanics
worked for organizations that repair and maintain
their own fleets of motor vehicles. Included in this
group were Federal, State, and local governments,
trucking, bus, taxicab, bakery, and dairy com­
panies. Some mechanics were employed by manu­
facturers o f motor vehicles to make final adjust­
ments and repairs at the end of assembly lines.
Most auto mechanics work in shops employing
from one to five mechanics. However, some of
the largest repair shops employ more than 100
mechanics. Generally, dealers’ service depart­
ments in large cities have larger staffs of mechan­
ics than independent shops and shops in smaller
Because motor vehicles are used throughout the
Nation, automobile mechanics are employed in
every section of the country, from the largest
cities to the smallest towns. Nearly half worked
in the eight States with the largest number of
automobiles: California, New York, Texas, Penn­
sylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, and New Jer­

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Most auto mechanics learn the trade through
on-the-job experience. Young men usually start


as helpers, lubrication irlen, car washers, or gaso­
line service station attendants, and gradually ac­
quire the necessary knowledge and skills by work­
ing with experienced mechanics. Although a man
can perform the simpler types of repair work after
a few months’ training and experience, it generally
takes him at least 3 or 4 years to become an all­
round mechanic. The learning period will depend
on the individual’s capabilities and the extent of
his formal schooling in automotive repair. Addi­
tional training is usually required for mechanics
who wish to become specialists. However, body
repairmen, who do not have to learn to repair
the operating parts of the vehicle, may learn their
trade in as little as 3 years if they have a knack
for handling metal.
One of the best ways for a young man to be­
come an all-round auto mechanic is through an
apprenticeship training program, which usually
lasts 4 years. Some apprenticeship programs also
allow the trainee to specialize in work such as
truck or bus repairs, or auto-body repairs.
A large number of young men, who did auto­
motive repair work in the Armed Forces, may
be required to attend special training courses or
to serve part of an apprenticeship period before
they can qualify as fully trained civilian
Vocational education agencies, in cooperation
with local offices o f the U.S. Employment Serv­
ice, in many parts of the country conduct train­
ing programs designed to train men to become
automobile mechanics. These programs, which
usually last a year, stress basic maintenance and
repair work. Although men who complete the
program are able to make simple automobile
repairs, they must undergo much additional
training before they can qualify as all-round
Experienced mechanics employed by automo­
bile and truck dealers are sometimes sent to manu­
facturers’ training centers to learn about new
features found in automobiles, such as fuel injec­
tion, power steering, or air conditioning.
For beginning jobs, employers prefer young
high school graduates who have some understand­
ing of automobile construction and operation and
who like mechanical work. Courses in science
and mathematics are helpful, since they give a



young man a better understanding of the oper­
ation of the automobile. Shop courses in auto
repair which are offered by many high schools
and vocational schools are valuable. Practical
experience gained from working on automobiles
as a hobby is also helpful to a young man who
wishes to become a mechanic.
Most mechanics are required to have their
own handtools. A beginner is usually expected
to accumulate about $100 worth of tools. Experi­
enced mechanics usually have over $500 invested
in their tools. Special tools for servicing units
like automatic transmissions, and major pieces of
test equipment, are ordinarily furnished by the
Capable and experienced automobile mechan­
ics have several advancement possibilities. A
mechanic in a large shop may advance to a super­
visory position, such as repair shop foreman,
service salesman, or service manager. Many
experienced mechanics open their own inde­
pendent repair shops or gasoline service stations
and some mechanics may become car or truck
salesmen, or manage a dealer’s parts department.

Employment Outlook
Employment o f automobile mechanics is
expected to increase rapidly during the remain­
der of the 1960’s and in the longer run. In addi­
tion to openings resulting from growth of the
occupation, many openings will result from the
need to replace experienced automobile mechan­
ics who retire, die, or transfer to other fields of
work. In this large occupation, retirements and
deaths alone will probably account for about
15,000 to 20,000 job openings each year.
The number of automobile mechanics will
increase for several reasons. Registrations of
motor vehicles in the United States, which
increased by about 50 percent between 1952 and
1962, are expected to increase by about a third
in the next 10 years because of increases in popu­
lation, new families, consumer purchasing power,
and multicar ownership. Continued farm mecha­
nization is expected to increase the number of
tractors and other gasoline-powered farm
machines. Also, more new cars are expected to
be equipped with features such as air condition­
ing, power steering, and power brakes. These

features make cars more comfortable and easier
to operate, but also increase their maintenance
requirements. An increase in the number of
repairs that a mechanic can do will partially
offset the increased number of more complex
vehicles. The more widespread use of new and
improved automobile servicing equipment will
help mechanics to locate and repair defects that
cause faulty automobile operation. Greater
emphasis on replacement rather than on repair of
defective parts, better shop management, speciali­
zation in a single type of repair, and better train­
ing methods also are expected to contribute
toward increasing the amount o f work the
mechanic can do.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Automobile mechanics (excluding body repair­
men) employed by trucking, taxicab, bus, and other
establishments that service their own vehicles had
average straight-time hourly earnings of about
$2.80, according to a survey of 82 areas in late 1961
and early 1962. Average hourly earnings ranged
from $2.15 in Chattanooga, Tenn., to $3.38 in San
Francisco-Oakland, Calif. These straight-time
earnings exclude pay for overtime work.
Most skilled auto mechanics and body repair­
men in automobile dealer repair shops are paid
a percentage of the labor cost charged to the
customer. Each repair job is assigned a fixed
labor charge and the most highly skilled me­
chanics can earn considerably more than the
average because they are able to make repairs
in less time. This is especially true in body
work, in which there are great differences in
skill between the very best repairman and the
average repairman. Some body repairmen in
large cities earn more than $10,000 a year.
Apprentices are paid a percentage of the jour­
neyman’s rate. This percentage ranges from 55
percent of the skilled worker’s rate in the appren­
tice’s first 6 months of work to between 85 and
90 percent in the last 6 months of the
apprenticeship period.
Many automobile mechanics work between 40
and 48 hours each week. Some work more than
48 hours a week.
Modern automotive repair shops are well
ventilated, lighted, and heated, but older shops



may not have such advantages. Most shops
have lifts that raise the vehicle so that work can
be done without stooping.
Generally, the mechanic’s work is performed
inside a shop during the day. However, in cases
where breakdowns occur on the road, the mechanic
may have to work out of doors. In many jobs,
the mechanic must handle greasy tools or dirty
Many auto mechanics are members o f labor
unions. A large number of unionized mechanics
are employed in shops of the larger new car

dealers and the maintenance departments of
truck and bus companies. Mechanics are highly
organized in West Coast cities and in other large
cities such as Chicago, Minneapolis-St. Paul,
St. Louis, New York City, and Cleveland. Among
the unions to which automobile mechanics belong
are the International Association of Machinists;
the International Union, United Automobile,
Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers
o f America; and the International Brotherhood
o f Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and
Helpers of America (Ind.).

Business Machine Servicemen
Nature of Work and Where Employed
Business machine servicemen maintain and
repair the increasing numbers and types of office
equipment used for correspondence, for record­
ing and processing transactions, and for dupli­
cating and mailing information. Equipment used
for these purposes includes typewriters and dic­
tating machines; adding machines, calculators,
electronic computers, and other data-processing
devices; and mailing and duplicating equipment.
These predominantly mechanical machines are
becoming increasingly complex as electric drive
and control components are incorporated in them.
Servicemen do much of their work in the
offices where the machines are used. Service­
men may maintain this equipment on a regular
basis, returning at frequent intervals to inspect
the machines, to clean and oil them, and make
minor adjustments or repairs. They may also be
called to an office to check a defective machine.
On office calls, servicemen usually question the
operator about the condition of the machine.
They may have to explain to operators how vari­
ous features o f the machines can best be used or
how to avoid machine damage.
While inspecting business machines, the serv­
iceman usually checks the operation of various
parts o f the equipment to make sure that they
work properly or to find the source of trouble.
For example, he may strike the keys of a type­
writer or calculator, rotate the drum o f a dupli­
cating machine, or feed punchcards to a tabulator
or sorter. In addition, he may check type or
photographic devices for alinement, and rollers for

dryness or compactness. I f necessary, covers of
machines may be removed to check levers,
gears, belts, or spacing mechanisms. He may
make voltage checks o f electric or electronic
When overhaul or major repair is necessary,
small units of equipment are generally brought
to the shop of the servicing company. Here,
servicemen disassemble the machine; inspect
components; remove and replace worn bearings,
cams, and other defective parts; and install new
belts and feed rolls where necessary. I f the
machine has electric motors or controls, these also
may require adjustment, or replacement o f parts.

Serviceman adjusts ink-form roller of duplicates machine


Common handtools such as screwdrivers, pliers,
and adjustable wrenches are used. In addition,
tools designed for special purposes, and gages,
meters, and other test equipment frequently are
Business machine servicing offers considerable
variety in work assignments. Such work requires
analytical ability on a wide range of problems.
Many persons find considerable satisfaction in
being able to diagnose the cause of the trouble
and to put machines back in good working order.
In addition to maintenance and repair respon­
sibilities, servicemen may engage in sales activi­
ties. Most commonly, they sell contracts for ma­
chine servicing on a regular basis. Some service­
men also are expected to sell supplies such as
special paper, ink, and stencils used with par­
ticular machines. Generally, commissions or
bonuses based on sales are paid, in addition to
Business machine servicemen are employed in
several types of firms. Manufacturers of business
machines employ more than half of these workers
in their,sales and service offices throughout the
country. Another large proportion of the more
than 60,000 business machine servicemen em­
ployed in early 1963 worked in local independent
establishments; some of these shops specialize in
repair work, whereas others combine sales and
service. The remainder are employed in large
organizations which have enough machines in
daily use to justify employing full-time service­
men. The Federal Government, for example,
employe 1 about 675 of these workers in early
Business machine servicemen employed in a
manufacturer’s branch office usually work on the
manufacturer’s products exclusively. In the large
branch offices of some companies, they may spe­
cialize in servicing one or two of the various types
of machines sold. In other companies, even in the
larger branches, the fully trained men are “ com­
bination” servicemen and work on the full line
of company equipment.
In manufacturers’
branches in the smaller cities, where fewer serv­
icemen are needed, most are “ combination” serv­
icemen, since the size of the operation makes it
impractical to have the men specialize on one type
of machine. In these instances, service may also
be combined with sales.

Servicemen employed by independent dealers
maintain and repair the many makes and models
of office machines used in the community. Most
dealers sell and service typewriters. Some also
sell and service adding machines, dictating ma­
chines, and less complex types of duplicating
equipment. Other dealers specialize in the sales
and service of adding and calculating machines,
cash registers, and bookkeeping-accounting ma­
chines. Most independent dealers employ fewer
than 5 servicemen, although some large dealers
may employ as many as 10 or 15.
Business machine servicing jobs are found
throughout the country. Even relatively small
communities usually have at least one or two
shops which repair machines. However, most
business machine servicemen work in large cities,
especially in those with large numbers of office
workers and where most of the calculators, ac­
counting-bookkeeping, and statistical machines
are used.
Typeivriter Servicemen (D.O.T. 5-83.127). The
principal work of the estimated 22,000 typewriter
servicemen employed in early 1963 was the main­
tenance and repair of manual and electric type­
writers. Typewriters are the most widely used busi­
ness machines. They are used in almost every
business office, as well as by many individuals in
their homes. The operation o f electric typewriters
and mechanical typewriters differs slightly, but the
two types are enough alike that the servicemen
who specialize in the repair of mechanical type­
writers can usually learn to repair the electric
machines, with brief additional training.
Typewriter servicemen are employed both in
the sales and service branches of typewriter manu­
facturers and by local independent dealers. Many
servicemen operate their own maintenance and
repair shops. Typewriter servicemen are found
in almost every sizable community throughout the
Adding Machine Servicemen (D.O.T. 5-83.122).
About 4,500 business machine servicemen were
engaged mainly in the servicing of adding ma­
chines in early 1963. These machines are less
complex than most other office calculating devices.
In some cases, servicing of both adding machines
and calculators is done by the same employee.

The repair of adding machines and simpler
calculating machines often provides experience
for advancement to work on more complicated
equipment, such as bookkeeping and accounting
machines. In some independent shops, adding
machines are serviced by men who also repair
Adding machine servicemen are employed both
in manufacturers’ sales and service branches and
by independent dealers. Other sources of employ­
ment are Federal, State, and local governments,
and a few large banks and other firms which use
large numbers of adding machines.
Calculating Machine Servicemen (D.O.T. 583.123). Almost 5,000 calculating machine serv­
icemen were employed in early 1963. Calculating
machines, which have complex mechanisms, add,
subtract, divide, multiply, and perform combina­
tions of these operations. In some shops, servicing
of calculators is combined with the servicing of
other business machines, particularly adding ma­
chines and accounting-bookkeeping machines.
Most o f the men who service calculators are
employed in manufacturers’ sales and service
branches. Some independent dealers employ men
skilled in the maintenance and repair of calcula­
tors. Others are employed by the Federal Govern­
ment and some large business organizations.
Cash Register Servicemen (D.O.T. 5-83.124).
Cash register repair and maintenance was the
main work of almost 6,000 business machine
servicemen in early 1963. Next to typewriters,
cash registers are the most widely used business
machines. The simplest models merely record
transactions, add receipts, and provide a change
drawer. The more complicated cash registers
simultaneously record several different kinds of
information on each transaction (such as identi­
fication o f the clerk, department, type of mer­
chandise, payment given, and change due),
provide printed receipts, and dispense change to
the customer.
The great majority of servicemen primarily
engaged in repairing cash registers are employed
in the sales and service branches o f the few manu­
facturing firms making these machines. Some of
the repair work, especially in smaller communi­
ties, is done by independent dealers that also main­
tain and repair other business machines.


Accounting-Bookkeeping Machine Servicemen
(D.O.T. 5-83.121). The repair of accounting­
bookkeeping machines was the main job of the
more than 3,000 business machine servicemen em­
ployed in early 1963. These machines perform
a variety of operations. Some post entries and
some do billing, but others combine the functions
of typewriters and computing devices. All
models have keyboards, like those on typewriters
and adding machines. These machines are used
in firms that have a great deal of accounting
and bookkeeping work, such as department
stores, large retail and wholesale businesses, and
banks. Many of the newer models are adjusted
to fit the accounting procedures used in an
individual customer’s office. Servicemen set up
the controls or programs for such machines from
plans which have been devised by the customers
and manufacturers’ salesmen.
Most accounting-bookkeeping machine service­
men are employed in the sales and service
branches of companies manufacturing this equip­
ment. Very few work in independent repair
Data-Processing Equipment Servicemen. More
than 14,000 men were employed in early 1963 to
install, modify, and maintain groups of machines
(systems) used to process large volumes of ac­
counting-statistical data. These men are the most
skilled business machine servicemen. The ma­
chines that they service include mechanical and
electromechanical devices of varying complexity
and highly complicated electronic computers.
However, even those machine systems which in­
clude the most advanced computers depend to a
high degree on associated equipment having elec­
tromechanical operating and control mechanisms.
This auxiliary equipment feeds information to the
computer for data processing and converts the
processed data to printed form for immediate use,
and to tape and punchcard coding for record
keeping and further processing. Machines used
in data processing systems include computers,
tabulators, card punchers, sorters, collators, con­
verters, tape transports, printers, and numerous
other devices.
Servicemen who work on these machines must
have a good basic knowledge of electricity, in
addition to mechanical skill. In some firms, only


men with training in electronics are hired to serv­
ice these machines. Many of these men have
learned electronics in technical schools or in the
Armed Forces. In other companies, experienced
men who can repair other types of business ma­
chines are given training in electronics by their
Data-processing machine servicemen are em­
ployed principally by firms which manufacture
and service such equipment. They may be as­
signed by their companies to work anywhere in
the United States, but they are usually stationed
in the larger cities.
Dictating Machine Servicemen (D.O.T. 5-83.135).
About 2,000 men were employed to repair and
service dictating machines in early 1963. These
machines are used in business offices to record
dictation on discs, belts, or tape which can be
played back for typing. In addition to standard
office dictating machines, servicemen install and
maintain central recording and transcribing sys­
Dictating machine servicemen must have a
knowledge of electronic fundamentals in order to
maintain and repair sound-amplifying com­
ponents of this equipment. Mechanical skills are
essential in maintenance work on drive mech­
anisms needed to control the movement of the
recording disk or belt.
Dictating machine servicemen are employed
throughout the country with concentrations in
the large business and commercial centers. Most
servicemen work in the sales and service branches
of business equipment manufacturers or for their
distributors. Typewriter and adding machine
servicemen employed by some independent dealers
also service dictating machines.
Duplicating and Copying Machine Servicemen
(D.O.T. 5-83.125). More than 4,500 men were
employed in early 1963 to maintain and repair
duplicating and copying machines. These
machines are used to make one or more paper
copies of printed or written information. The
processes used in these machines range widely,
from highly complex methods for large volume
reproduction to relatively simple methods used
in desk-top copiers. The equipment used in a
single process may also vary considerably from
relatively simple hand-operated devices used to

make up to five paper copies to highly compli­
cated electromechanical machines having auto­
matic controls which can duplicate several
hundred copies quickly.
When maintaining duplicating or copying
machines, the serviceman adjusts, oils, repairs, or
replaces parts such as rollers, belts, or gear mecha­
nisms. I f the equipment has electric or electronic
components, he may check voltages to determine
the need for adjustment or replacement of parts.
He may also clean the machine so that it will
function properly and produce clear copy.
Duplicating and copying machine servicemen
employed by some companies also service micro­
film equipment used in office operations. The
maintenance and repair of paper-handling
mechanisms used to speed the movement of docu­
ments, including drawings, through the photo­
graphic equipment is generally similar to that
used in duplicating machines. The men who
service this equipment, however, must understand
the photographic process used in order to properly
aline the optical devices so as to produce clear,
sharp negatives.
Most duplicating and copying machine service­
men are employed in the branch sales and service
offices of manufacturers or by their distributors.
Servicemen of Postage and Mailing Equipment.
More than 3,500 servicemen were employed in
early 1963 to maintain and repair the many d if­
ferent types of office machines and equipment
needed to handle the billions of pieces of mail
sent each year by business firms in this country.
These office machines included postage meters,
addressing and imprinting machines, and folding
and inserting equipment.
Data processing
machines used for tabulating and imprinting
account information are also used in addressing
operations where the volume of accounts justifies.
Servicemen who work on these predominantly
electromechanical machines install the equipment
and adjust, oil, clean, and repair or replace com­
ponents to keep the equipment in working order.
As with most paper handling equipment, rollers
and other manipulating devices driven by belt
or gear mechanisms are the components most fre­
quently requiring maintenance. Since most post­
age and mailing equipment is electrically powered
and an increasing number of machines use electric

or electronic controls, the servicemen must have
a basic knowledge of electricity and a knowledge
of electronic theory is a decided advantage.
Most men who service postage and mailing
equipment are employed in the branch offices of
equipment manufacturers.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Employers prefer applicants for beginning jobs
as business machine servicemen to be under 30
years of age. Men up to the age of 40 may be
considered by some employers provided they have
had applicable training or experience.
Trainees usually are required to have at least
a high school education. Applicants who have not
completed high school, however, are accepted by
some companies if they can demonstrate superior
mechanical aptitude or have had qualifying
mechanical or electrical experience. Completion
of high school is particularly important after the
serviceman has acquired his basic skills and is
seeking to work on more complex equipment or
promotion to supervisor. Applicants interested
in servicing complex electromechanical and elec­
tronic equipment may be required to have 1 or
more years’ training or experience in mechanics
or electronics, in addition to a high school edu­
cation, in order to qualify.
Applicants for trainee jobs frequently must
pass one or more tests. Mechanical aptitude is the
characteristic most frequently tested although,
increasingly, knowledge of basic electricity or
electronic fundamentals is also tested. Applicants
may also be tested for manual dexterity, general
intelligence, and abstract reasoning.
Employers look for applicants who have a
pleasant, cooperative manner. Most machine
servicing is done in customers’ offices and a
serviceman’s ability to do his work with the least
interference with office routine is very important.
A neat appearance and ability to converse effec­
tively are also desired characteristics.
Young men entering the business machine serv­
icing field generally begin as trainees and acquire
their skills through on-the-job training, work
experience, and instruction in manufacturers’
training schools. Courses in business machine
maintenance and repair, conducted by some State
and city vocational schools and by private corre­


spondence schools, are available to trainees and
others interested in this field of work.
Business machine servicemen who are hired for
work in a manufacturer’s branch office are trained
to service only the company’s line of machines.
Independent shops, who look for men who can
service many makes of machines, will either hire
men with previous experience on one or more
types of machines or will give a new man infor­
mal training on several different makes. Formal
training programs lasting from 2 to 4 years
are conducted by some manufacturers and
independent dealers.
Men hired as trainees in manufacturers’ branch
offices usually are sent to company schools for
periods lasting from several weeks to several
months, depending on the type of machine they
will service. They then receive from 1 to 3 years
of practical experience and on-the-job training
before they are considered fully qualified. Dur­
ing this period, they may occasionally go back to
factory schools for additional training. Even
after becoming skilled workers, they may return
to school for special instruction in new business
machine developments. In addition to training in
company schools, servicemen at manufacturers’
branch offices are encouraged to broaden their
technical and general knowledge during their
nonworking hours. Many companies provide full
or partial tuition grants for a variety of courses
at academic institutions, as well as for home-study
courses in subjects related to the serviceman’s
Men in independent shops generally learn the
trade by working with experienced servicemen
who instruct them in the skills of the trade.
Occasionally, men employed by an independent
dealer who is authorized to sell and service a
manufacturer’s products will be sent to the manu­
facturer’s school for training. Generally, how­
ever, men in independent shops receive little
formal training.
Length of training depends on the kind of shop
in which a man is employed. In independent
shops, the time required to become a skilled
serviceman tends to be somewhat longer than in
manufacturers’ branches, because of the greater
variety of machines and the generally informal
nature of the training.
The training period also varies in relation to
the complexity of the equipment and the service­



man’s ability to become thoroughly skilled in the
maintenance, repair, and other activities associ­
ated with less complicated business machines, such
as typewriters, adding machines, and some photo­
copy equipment. Calculating machines require
from 2 to 3 years of training and experience.
Cash register repairmen learn their job in from
2% to 31/2 years, the last 6 months of which are
usually spent in the company school. Skilled
accounting-bookkeeping machine repairmen gen­
erally must have at least 3 to 4 years of training
and experience. The first 1 or 2 years may con­
sist o f servicing adding machines, calculators, or
cash registers, since this is considered valuable
background for servicing accounting-bookkeeping
Most machines used in data processing systems
contain electrical equipment; many have elec­
tronic components. The companies which manu­
facture and service these machines, therefore,
usually require that applicants have some knowl­
edge of electricity or electronics. In qualifying
for a job in the maintenance of the complex
electronic data-processing machines, college or
technical institute courses in engineering are
helpful, though not essential. Young veterans
who have had electronics training in the Armed
Forces are specially desired by employers in this
field. Men hired as trainees generally spend their
first 2 months in on-the-job training. I f they
prove satisfactory, they are sent to a company
school for a period of from 3 to 6 months. After
completing the course, they work under super­
vision until they acquire enough skill to service
and repair on their own. This period usually
lasts from 12 to 18 months.
Servicemen frequently have the opportunity
to move into sales jobs, where their earnings may
be greater. In some cases, service and sales work
are combined. Many o f these men also have the
opportunity for promotion to supervisory jobs,
such as foreman or service manager, and to serv­
iceman training or product engineering divisions
o f their companies, if they show exceptional
abilities. Experienced men sometimes open their
own repair shops; men who work in the branch
offices of some manufacturers are sometimes given
sales franchises from the company and become
independent dealers.

Employment Outlook
The rapidly growing business machine service
field will provide several thousand job opportuni­
ties for young men each year during the remain­
der of the 1960’s, and in the longer run. Many
of these job opportunities will occur because
of the need to replace experienced workmen
who retire, die, or transfer to other fields o f work.
More than 60,000 servicemen were employed in
early 1963, more than double the number working
during the early 1950’s. The greater employment
of servicemen has been due to the increasing use
of many types of office machines to do all kinds
of clerical work in our expanding commercial
and industrial establishments. In recent years,
there have been many technical changes in long
established types of business machines. For ex­
ample, electrically driven mechanical equipment,
such as typewriters and adding machines, is
rapidly taking the place of nonelectrical mechani­
cal machines which do the same work. The increas­
ing use of this more complex equipment, which
requires additional maintenance, has also increased
the need for business machine servicemen, espe­
cially those who have good mechanical ability and
a knowledge of electricity or electronics.
Opportunities for jobs in the servicing o f elec­
tronic business machine systems will be particu­
larly favorable in the years ahead. The use of
such machines has expanded greatly in recent
years, and demand for this equipment is expected
to be even greater in the future.
Business machine servicemen have year-round
employment— steadier than that in many other
skilled trades. The office machines serviced by
these men must be maintained continuously, even
when business slackens, since business records
must be kept, correspondence carried on, and
statistical reports prepared. Men who establish
themselves in the business machine service field
can expect continuing employment for many

Earnings and Working Conditions
Information obtained from a number of em­
ployers of business machine servicemen in late
1962 indicated that earnings o f experienced serv­
icemen generally ranged from $85 to $130 a week
depending on the type o f machine they serviced,



where they were employed, and their length o f
service with employers. Wages were lowest for
men who repair only typewriters, adding ma­
chines, or less-complex types of photocopy equip­
ment ; the earnings o f these workers usually
ranged from $85 to $110 a week. Cash registers,
calculators, accounting-bookkeeping machines,
and nonelectronic accounting-statistical machines
require more skill to repair. Consequently, the
men who work on them receive somewhat higher
pay rates, generally from $90 to $120 a week.
Highest rates are paid to men who service elec­
tronic data-processing machines. The most highly
skilled electronic computer servicemen were earn­
ing as much as $175 a week.
Servicemen trainees begin at wages consider­
ably below these levels; they receive pay increases
as they become increasingly skilled during the
training period. Starting wages generally ranged
from $65 to $75 a week. Men with previous elec­
tronics training in the Armed Forces or civilian

technical schools generally receive somewhat
higher beginning wages.
In addition to their salaries, servicemen in some
companies receive commissions for selling sup­
plies or service contracts. Many servicemen em­
ployed by manufacturers and independent dealers
are covered by group life and hospitalization
insurance plans, and pension plans.
Servicing of business machines is cleaner and
lighter work than the work in most other mechan­
ical trades. Servicemen generally wear business
suits and perform most o f their work in the
offices where the machines are used. The occupa­
tion is comparatively free from the danger of
accident. Many of these j obs involve considerable
traveling within the area served by the employer.
For this reason, many employers require that
servicemen own or have the use of a car. The
serviceman generally is reimbursed for company
use of his car on a mileage basis. Work tools
usually are supplied by the employer.

Diesel Mechanics
(D .O .T. 5-83.931)

Nature of Work
Diesel mechanics keep bulldozers, tractors, and
other diesel-powered equipment that is widely
used on highways, on farms, and in industry, in
good operating order. Many diesel mechanics
specialize in maintenance and repair of diesel
equipment; others specialize in rebuilding en­
gines. Those who do maintenance and repair work
perform the periodic cleaning, adjusting, and
tuneups that are necessary for efficient operation
o f diesel engines. When diesel equipment is not
operating properly, these mechanics (or their
supervisors) determine the cause of the trouble.
The mechanics then repair or replace broken or
wornout parts or make necessary adjustments.
In addition to engine maintenance and repair,
diesel mechanics may work on other parts of
diesel-powered machinery. For example, some
mechanics who repair diesel-powered trucks and
buses work on brake and steering systems.
Mechanics who specialize in rebuilding diesel
engines that have been operated for many hours
or miles, take the entire engine apart, examine

all of the parts for defects, and repair or replace
defective parts. They then reassemble and adjust
the engine.
Many of the men who repair the larger diesel
engines, such as those used to run locomotives or
electric generating equipment in industry, are
specifically trained for this type of work. How­
ever, smaller diesel engines such as the type used
in buses, trucks, and farm equipment are often
repaired by workers who have had previous
training or experience in the repair o f automo­
bile and truck gasoline engines because the basic
parts of the diesel engine and the gasoline engine
are similar. (See statement on Automobile Me­
chanics, p. 405.)
Diesel mechanics use handtools such as pliers,
wrenches, and screwdrivers in their work. In
addition, they may use complex electronic testing
equipment such as the dynamometer, which meas­
ures engine power, and mechanical lifting devices
such as hoists. They may also use machine tools,
such as grinders, drills, and lathes, to make re­
placement parts for diesel-powered equipment.



Where Employed
Many diesel mechanics are employed in the
service departments o f distributors and dealers
that sell diesel-powered farm and construction
equipment and trucks. Diesel mechanics are also
employed by companies and government agencies
that repair and maintain their own fleets of
diesel-powered equipment. This group includes
local and intercity buslines, construction com­
panies, trucking companies, shipping lines, elec­
tric powerplants, and Federal, State, and local
governments. (Railroads classify workers who
repair d i e s e l locomotives as machinists or
Because diesel engines are widely used in
American industry and commerce, diesel me­
chanics are employed in all parts o f the country.
However, large numbers o f these workers are
employed in California, New York, Illinois, and
Texas, which have extensive construction pro­
grams and farming activities requiring great
numbers o f diesel-powered machines.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Diesel mechanics learn their skills in several
different ways. Most young men who become
diesel mechanics first work as mechanics repairing
gasoline-powered automobiles, trucks, and buses.
They usually start as helpers to experienced gaso­
line engine mechanics and become skilled by
working with them for 3 to 4 years. When em­
ployed by firms that use or repair diesel-powered
equipment, they are given 6 to 18 months’ addi­
tional training in the maintenance and repair of
such equipment. While learning to fix diesel
engines, many of these men find it helpful to take
courses in the repair and maintenance of diesel
equipment, offered by vocational, trade, and cor­
respondence schools.
Some diesel mechanics, such as those employed
by diesel engine manufacturers, learn their trade
through formal apprenticeship programs. These
programs, which generally last 4 years, give
trainees a combination o f classroom training and
practical experience in fixing the particular types
of diesel engines used by their employers. A p ­
prentices receive classroom instruction in blue­
print reading, hydraulics, welding, and other
related subjects. In their practical training, they

Diesel mechanic adjusts rebuilt engine

learn about valves, bearings, injection systems,
starting systems, cooling systems, and other parts
of diesel engines.
Other young men learn the trade through less
formal training programs. Generally, they are
hired as trainees by employers who use or repair
large quantities of diesel-powered equipment.
These trainees are taught to do all kinds of diesel
repair jobs by experienced mechanics.
Experienced diesel mechanics employed by
companies that sell diesel-powered equipment
are sometimes sent to special training classes
conducted by diesel engine manufacturers. In
these classes, mechanics learn to maintain and
repair the latest diesel engines, using the most
modern equipment.
Employers generally look for diesel mechanic
trainees and apprentice applicants who have a
high school education. Young men who have
taken courses in physics, machine-shop work,

and mathematics are given preference in hiring
because they are likely to have a better under­
standing of the operation of diesel equipment.
Courses in automobile repair, which are offered
by many high schools and vocational schools,
are also valuable. Employers also look for young
men who have both mechanical aptitude and an
interest in the accurate work required to make
precise adjustments o f diesel engines.
Many diesel mechanics are required to have
their own handtools. A beginner is usually
expected to accumulate $100 worth of tools.
Experienced mechanics usually have over $500
invested in their tools.
There are several advancement possibilities
for capable and experienced diesel mechanics.
Those who work for organizations that operate
or repair large fleets of diesels, such as buslines
or diesel equipment distributors, may advance
to supervisory positions of master mechanic or
service manager. Some diesel mechanics who
are in charge of the engine departments of ships
may become marine engineers. To be licensed as
a marine engineer by the U.S. Coast Guard,
the diesel mechanic must have 3 years’ experi­
ence in the operation and maintenance of diesel
engines on ships, pass a written examination,
and meet other requirements.

Employment Outlook
An increasing number of diesel mechanics will
be needed in the remainder of the 1960’s and in
the longer run to maintain and repair the grow­
ing number of diesel engines used in American
industry, commerce, and agriculture. In addi­
tion to the new jobs expected to develop because
of the more widespread use of diesel engines,
many job openings will result as diesel mechanics
retire, die, or transfer to other fields of work.
The use of diesel engines to power farm and
construction machinery, electric generators, trucks,
buses, trains, and ships has increased rapidly in
the past and will continue to increase in the next
10 to 15 years. For example, the number of dieselpowered trucks and buses in the United States
doubled between 1956 and 1962. It is expected
that the economic advantages of the diesel engine
as a source o f power will result in its increasing


use. Most industries which use diesel engines
in large numbers are expected to expand their
activities considerably in the years ahead. The
Federal Government’s vast highway development
program will require large numbers of additional
diesel-powered bulldozers, cranes, and other con­
struction machinery. Farm mechanization is
expected to continue, resulting in the use of many
new harvesters, tractors, and other diesel-powered
machines. The number o f diesel-powered trucks
and buses will increase. In addition, diesel-pow­
ered taxicabs, which are in limited use today, are
expected to be used on a larger scale.
Most new job openings in this field will be
filled by mechanics who have had experience in
repairing gasoline engines. Companies that are
replacing gasoline engine equipment with dieselpowered equipment usually retrain their experi­
enced mechanics to service the diesel equipment.
Companies which buy additional diesel engines
to meet expansion needs usually hire experienced
diesel mechanics. Men who have had school train­
ing in diesel repair but no practical experience
may be able to find jobs only as trainees.

Earnings and Working Conditions
National wage data are not available for diesel
mechanics. However, wage data collected from a
few employers and union-management contracts
indicate that these workers earned from about
$2.50 to $3 an hour in late 1962 and early 1963.
Workers who repair diesel locomotives were paid
approximately $2.75 an hour in mid-1962.
The weekly work schedule of diesel mechanics
ranges from 40 to 48 hours a week. Many of
them work nights or on weekends, particularly if
they work on buses, or diesel engines used in elec­
tric light and powerplants, or other diesel equip­
ment used in serving the public. Diesel mechanics
generally receive a higher rate of pay when they
work overtime hours, evenings, or weekends.
Many diesel mechanics also receive vacations
and holidays with pay. In addition, they may
receive health and life insurance benefits which
are at least partially paid for by their employers.
Most of the larger repair shops are pleasant
places in which to work, but some of the small
shops have poor lighting, heating, and ventila­



tion. Occasionally, diesel mechanics who work
for buslines or construction companies make
repairs outdoors where the breakdowns. occur.
I f proper safety precautions are not taken, there
is some danger of injury when repairing heavy
parts which are supported on jacks or hoists. In
most jobs, the mechanics handle greasy tools and
engine parts. It is often necessary for them to
stand or lie in awkward or cramped positions for
extended periods of time.

Many diesel mechanics belong to labor unions.
Some of the unions to which they belong are the
International Association of Machinists; the
Amalgamated Association of Street, Electric
Railway and Motor Coach Employes of America;
The Sheet Metal Workers’ International Associa­
tion; the International Union, United Automo­
bile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement
Workers of America; and the International
Brotherhood of Electrical Workers.

Industrial Machinery Repairmen
(D .O .T. 5-83.641)

Nature of Work
The great variety of machinery and equip­
ment used in American industry is kept in good
operating condition by industrial machinery
repairmen (often called maintenance mechanics).
When breakdowns occur, repairmen determine
the cause of the trouble and make the necessary
repairs. They may completely or partly dis­
assemble a machine in order to repair or replace
defective parts. After the machine is reassembled,
they make the necessary mechanical adjustments
to insure its proper operation.
Much of a repairman’s time is spent in preven­
tive maintenance. By regularly inspecting the
equipment, oiling and greasing machines, and
cleaning and repairing parts, he prevents trouble
which could cause a breakdown of the machinery.
He also may keep maintenance records of the
equipment he services.
The types of machinery on which industrial
machinery repairmen work depend to a great
extent on the particular industry in which they
are employed. For example, in the apparel indus­
try, these skilled workers may be employed to
repair industrial sewing machines. They may
take sewing machines apart in order to repair
belts, adjust treadles, or replace motor bearings.
In printing and publishing establishments, skilled
industrial machinery repairmen may maintain
and repair equipment such as printing presses
and folders.
Repairmen often follow blueprints, lubrication
charts, and engineering specifications in main­
taining and repairing equipment. They may also
408 O— 63------ 28

use parts catalogs to order replacements for
broken or defective parts. Occasionally, repair­
men may sketch a part which is to be replaced
by the plant’s machine shop.
Industrial machinery repairmen use wrenches,
screwdrivers, pliers, and other handtools, as well
as portable power tools. They also may use weld­
ing equipment in repairing broken metal parts.

Where Employed
Industrial machinery repairmen work in al­
most every industrial plant that uses large
amounts of machinery and equipment. However,
a majority of the more than 100,000 repairmen
estimated to be employed in early 1963 worked
in the following industries: Food and kindred
products, primary metals, machinery, chemicals,
fabricated metal products, and transportation
equipment. Many repairmen were also employed
in the paper, textile, and rubber industries.
Because industrial machinery repairmen work
in a wide variety of industrial plants, they are
employed in every section o f the country. The
largest numbers of these workers are in New
York, Pennsylvania, California, Ohio, Illinois,
Michigan, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and other
heavily industrialized States.

Training and Other Qualifications
Most workers who become industrial machinery
repairmen start as helpers and pick up the skills
of the trade informally through several years of
experience. Others learn the trade through for­



mal apprenticeship programs, and this method
of entering the occupation will become more
important as machinery becomes more complex.
Apprenticeship training usually lasts 4 years and
consists of both on-the-job training and related
classroom instruction. Apprentices learn the use
and care of the tools of the trade, and the oper­
ation, lubrication, and adjustment of the machin­
ery and equipment which they will maintain.
Classroom instruction is given in shop mathe­
matics, blueprint reading, safety, hydraulics,
welding, and other subjects related to the craft.
Mechanical aptitude and manual dexterity are
important qualifications for workers in this trade.
Good physical condition and agility also are
necessary, because industrial machinery repair­
men are sometimes required to lift heavy objects
or do considerable climbing in order to repair
equipment located high above the ground.

Employment Outlook
Many thousands of industrial machinery
repairmen will be needed during the 1960’s and
in the longer run. The anticipated use of more
machinery and equipment such as machine tools
and assembling equipment in manufacturing in­
dustries will result in continued growth in the
employment of industrial machinery repairmen.
Also, as automatic equipment becomes more wide­
spread and is used to make continuous produc­
tion lines, breakdowns will lead to greater losses
of production and make repair work and pre­
ventive maintenance more essential.
In addition to the many new job openings for
industrial machinery repairmen that will be cre­
ated by industrial expansion, a few thousand new
workers will be needed annually to replace those
who transfer to other fields of work, retire, or die.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Average straight-time hourly earnings of
industrial machinery repairmen employed by a
wide variety of manufacturing and nonmanufac­
turing establishments in 79 areas in 1961-62
ranged from $2.15 in Greenville, S.C., to $3.32 in
Charleston, W. Va. More than half of the repair­
men covered by these surveys earned at least $3
an hour.
Industrial machinery repairmen are not usu­
ally affected by seasonal changes in production.
During slack periods, when production workers
are laid off, repairmen are often retained; many
companies use machine repairmen to do major
repair and overhaul jobs during such periods.
Because motors and other parts of machines
are not always readily accessible, maintenance
mechanics may work in stooped or cramped posi­
tions close to the floor or from the tops of ladders.
Industrial machinery repairmen are subject to
common shop injuries such as cuts and bruises.
However, accidents have been reduced by the use
of goggles, metaltip shoes, metal helmets, and
other safety devices. Repairmen must frequently
work on dirty and greasy equipment. Lighting
and ventilation are usually good.
Most industrial machinery repairmen belong
to labor unions. Some of the unions to which
these workers belong are the United Steelworkers
of America; the International Union, United
Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Imple­
ment Workers of America; the International
Association of Machinists; and the International
Union of Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers.
Most employer-union contracts covering indus­
trial machinery repairmen provide for fringe
benefits such as paid holidays and vacations,
health insurance, life insurance, and retirement

Instrument Repairmen
(D.O.T. 5-83.456, .971, .972, .975, and .980)

Nature of Work
Instrument repairmen install and service the
complex industrial and scientific instruments that
make possible precise measurement and control
of heat, pressure, flow of liquids, chemical compo­
sition, and other variables. Instruments serviced

by these workers are used in refining oil, guiding
airplanes and missiles, generating electricity, con­
ducting laboratory experiments, manufacturing
steel, and in hundreds of other activities. Auto­
matic pilots which keep airplanes on course and
voltmeters which measure electricity, are exam-


pies of common instruments. A chromatograph
which analyzes the components of a gas is an
example of a less common, modem instrument.
Instrument repairmen (also called instrument
mechanics, instrument maintenance men, instru­
ment men, and instrument technicians) sometimes
specialize in particular kinds of instruments. For
example, they may service either electronic, hy­
draulic, or pneumatic instruments.
To locate instrument trouble, repairmen first
confer with the workers reporting defective in­
struments to make sure that the trouble is in the
instrument and not in other equipment. They
visually inspect the instruments for frictional
wear, loose parts, corrosion, and other causes of
reduced instrument accuracy, or malfunction.
They use testing equipment such as pressure and
vacuum gages, speed counters, and electrical meas­
uring instruments; for example, voltmeters, am­
meters, and potentiometers. They compare the
readings shown on such testing equipment with
the reading that would be shown if the instru­
ments were operating properly. They also look
for electrical leaks, short circuits, and worn wires.
Instrument repairmen repair instruments at the
site of the trouble or in specially equipped shops.
They may replace worn or damaged parts or
make minor repairs such as resoldering loose
connections. They use handtools such as screw­
drivers, wrenches, and pliers. They also use bench
fools such- as jewelers’ lathes, pin vises, small
buffer grinders, and ultrasonic cleaners for small
metal parts. In some companies, instrument re­
pairmen operate drill presses, grinders, polishers,
and other machine tools to make new parts or to
change standard parts to fit particular instru­
ments. When repairing complex electronic instru­
ment systems, repairmen use testing equipment
to locate the trouble. The defective component
is then replaced. As guides in their work instru­
ment repairmen frequently use instruction books
that describe how to install, operate, and main­
tain instruments. They also use schematic dia­
grams, assembly drawings, and blueprints. When
instruments are reassembled, repairmen give them
final checks for accurate operation.
Instrument repairmen also try to prevent
trouble. On a regular schedule they look for and
correct defects which could cause breakdowns


Instrument repairmen are becoming more important with the
increase in use of instruments

resulting in production losses. They also clean,
lubricate, and adjust the instruments.
Some highly skilled instrument repairmen
install and test new instruments and advise oper­
ators on how to use and care for them. Some­
times they modernize older instruments by put­
ting in new parts. Other highly skilled instru­
ment repairmen assist scientists and engineers in
research and development laboratories. They
select and arrange instruments for tests and
experiments. They also modify instruments to
meet special requirements or to get better results.

Where Employed
More than 60,000 instrument repairmen were
employed in early 1963 by gas and electric utili­
ties; by petroleum and chemical plants; by manu­
facturers of instruments, pulp and paper, metals,
rubber, missiles, and automobiles; and by air­
lines. Several thousand o f these repairmen work
for Federal Government agencies, mainly the Air
Force, Navy, and Army.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
To become a fully qualified instrument repair­
man usually takes at least 4 years o f on-the-job
training and study. However, the time required
varies considerably, depending upon individual
ability, previous experience and training, and the
complexity o f the instruments being serviced.
Some instrument repairmen are hired as train­
ees or chosen to be trainees from among plant
workers. They learn their trade either informally
by working with experienced men or in formal
training programs. In addition to actual work
experience, formal training programs include
specialized courses such as instrumentation
theory, mathematics, and blueprint reading.
These courses may be taken by correspondence
or at local schools during or after working hours.
Some young men train for instrument repair
work in technical institutes and junior colleges.
The programs offered by these schools last about
2 years and emphasize basic engineering funda­
mentals—science and mathematics. As instru­
ments become more complex, technical school
training will become increasingly important and
young men with this training will have a better
chance for advancement.
A few instrument repairmen start as appren­
tices. Apprenticeship programs, which generally
last 4 years, emphasize on-the-job training in
repairing and maintaining instruments. Appren­
tices also study mathematics, physics, electronics,
chemistry, blueprint reading, and instrumentation
Armed Forces technical schools also offer train­
ing in instrument servicing. Young men who
expect to enter the Armed Forces may wish to
investigate opportunities for training and work
experience while in military service. Skills
acquired in this trade in the Armed Forces often
qualify men for civilian jobs as instrument
repairmen and for other maintenance occupa­
Several instrument manufacturers offer special­
ized training to experienced instrument repair­
men employed by companies which buy their
products. These training courses last from 1 week
to 9 months, depending upon the number and
complexity o f the instruments which the workers
are learning to service. Courses are given in
theory, maintenance, and operation of instru­


ments produced by these manufacturers. Students
learn to check instruments step by step. They
also learn where to find information about instru­
ment servicing.
Men hired as trainees or apprentices generally
must be high school graduates. Courses in
algebra, trigonometry, physics, chemistry, elec­
tricity, electronics, machine shop practice, and
blueprint reading are considered particularly
useful. Some employers give tests to applicants
to determine their mechanical or electrical apti­
tude. Building and maintaining a ham radio
station, or hi-fi sets, is good experience for a
young man planning to become an instrument
Instrument repairmen who meet the public
are expected to be neat in appearance and to get
along well with people. Other important quali­
fications are ability to work alone with little
supervision, and good hand-eye coordination
which is needed while handling delicate instru­
ment parts.
Very skilled instrument repairmen may
advance to positions of increasing responsibility.
They can become group leaders or foremen in
maintenance departments. They can advance to
jobs as service representatives in branch offices o f
instrument manufacturing companies. Some
instrument repairmen become engineering assist­
ants. Because the use of electronic components
in instruments will increase, a basic knowledge
of electronics will help young men advance in
the instrument field.

Employment Outlook
The number of instrument repairmen—more
than 60,000 in early 1963—is expected to increase
by a few thousand a year during the remainder
of the 1960’s and in the early 1970’s. In addition
to job openings resulting from the relatively
rapid growth in employment, many job oppor­
tunities will arise from the need to replace experi­
enced repairmen who transfer to other lines of
work, retire, or die. Deaths and retirements alone
will result in about a thousand job openings
More instrument repairmen will be needed
because the use of instruments in industry will
increase rapidly in the years ahead. Instrumenta­



tion will increase as manufacturing becomes more
mechanized. As our population increases, more
instruments will also be needed to help produce
and. distribute larger quantities of gas, fuels, and
electricity. Our expanding space program will
require many kinds of new, complex instruments.
More research laboratories with greater numbers
o f instruments are expected in the future. It is
anticipated that hospitals will increasingly use
instruments to supply diagnostic information to
medical specialists.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Information obtained from a number o f unionmanagement agreements in the pulp, paper, and
paperboard industry and from several instru­
ment, chemical, and petroleum companies indi­
cates that most instrument repairmen in 1962
earned between $3 and $3.40 an hour. Some highly
skilled instrument repairmen earned more than
$3.70 an hour. Instrument repairmen employed by
Federal Government agencies in Washington,
D.C., in 1962 received from $2.95 to $3.29 an hour,
about the same rates received by nongovernment
Most instrument repairmen work a 40-hour,
5-day week. Those employed in petroleum refin­
eries and chemical pl&nts, which operate 24 hours
a day and 7 days a week, may work on any of
three shifts or rotate among shifts. They may
also be called to work on Sundays and holidays
with emergency crews. They receive premium
pay for night and holiday work. Most companies
provide holiday and vacation pay. Many provide
additional benefits, such as life insurance, hospi­

talization, medical and surgical insurance, sick­
ness and accident insurance, and retirement
Instrument repairmen may service instruments
on factory floors amid noise, oil, and grease. They
may also work at benches in quiet, clean, welllighted repair shops. In some industries, such as
chemical, petroleum and steel, repairmen may be
required to work outdoors in all kinds o f weather.
Those employed by instrument manufacturers
may have to travel often.
Many instrument repairmen belong to unions,
including the International Association of
Machinists; International Brotherhood of Elec­
trical Workers; International Brotherhood o f
Pulp, Sulphite, and Paper Mill Workers; Inter­
national Chemical Workers Union; International
Union of Electrical, Badio and Machine Workers;
International Union, United Automobile, Aero­
space and Agricultural Implement Workers of
America; Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers
International Union; and Utility Workers Union
of America.

Where To Go for More Information
For more information on this occupation, write
Instrument Society of America,
530 W illiam Penn PI., Pittsburgh, Pa., 15200.
Scientific Apparatus Makers Association,
20 North Wacker Dr., Chicago, 111., 60606.

Inquiries concerning positions with the Federal
Government should be made at the regional offices
o f the U.S. Civil Service Commission.

Maintenance Electricians
(D .O.T. 4-97.420)

Nature of Work
Maintenance electricians (electrical repairmen)
are skilled workers who maintain and repair
many different types of electrical equipment. In
addition, they sometimes modify and install elec­
trical equipment. Maintenance electricians work
on equipment such as motors, transformers, gen­
erators, circuit breakers, controls, and lighting
equipment used in industrial, commercial, and

public establishments. A large part o f a main­
tenance electrician’s work consists of periodically
inspecting equipment to detect and repair defec­
tive equipment before breakdown occurs. When
trouble does develop, the electrician must quickly
find and repair the faulty circuit or equipment in
order to prevent production losses and incon­
venience. In emergencies, it also is his responsi­
bility to advise management whether immediate

shutdown of equipment is necessary, or if con­
tinued operation would be hazardous.
In his daily work, the maintenance electrician
performs many different jobs. For example, he
may make repairs by replacing units or parts such
as wiring, fuses, transformers, coils, or switches.
While doing repair or installation work, the elec­
trician may connect wires by splicing or by using
mechanical connectors. He may measure, cut,
bend, thread, and install conduits through which
wires are run to outlets, panels, and boxes. He
also may adjust equipment controls and check
and adjust instruments.
In testing electrical equipment and wiring, the
maintenance electrician uses such devices as
test lamps, ammeters, volt-ohm meters, and
oscilloscopes. He sometimes works from blue­
prints and other specifications when doing repair
or installation jobs. He may make mathematical
computations relating to load capacities and con­
nections of electrical wiring and equipment. The
many different tasks performed by maintenance
electricians call for the use of a variety of handtools and power tools, such as pliers, screwdrivers,
drills, reamers, and conduit bending and
threading tools.
Although all of these craftsmen possess the
same basic skills and use the same tools, the
nature of their work depends largely on the
size of plant and the particular industry in which

Maintenance electrician repairs connections on control panel


they are employed. In large plants, for example,
these workers may specialize in the maintenance
and repair of electrical machinery such as trans­
formers, motors, and welding machines. In small
plants, the electrician usually is responsible for
all types of electrical work. The maintenance
electrician in manufacturing plants usually re­
pairs or maintains the electrical equipment oper­
ated in connection with the production o f a spe­
cific item. For example, steel mills and aluminum
plants require a large number of electricians to
keep their rolling mills, heavy cranes, and other
electrical and electronic equipment in good
working order.
In large office buildings or apartment houses,
skilled electricians are needed to maintain or
repair wiring used in lighting or other electrical
equipment and fixtures, and motors and com­
pressors used, for example, in the operation of
air-conditioning systems.

Where Employed
About 200,000 maintenance electricians were
employed throughout the country in early 1963.
More than 110,000 of these craftsmen were
engaged in servicing the equipment and machin­
ery used in manufacturing plants. O f these work­
ers about 18,000 were employed by manufacturers
of primary metal products; 31,000 in factories
producing transportation equipment; 8,000 in
chemical and allied products plants; 9,000 in fac­
tories producing nonelectrical machinery; 5,000
in plants producing food products; and the
remainder were widely distributed among other
manufacturing industries.
O f the maintenance electricians in nonmanufac­
turing establishments, about 35,000 were in trans­
portation, communications, and public utility
firms; 8,000 in wholesale and retail trade estab­
lishments; and 9,000 in mines. Other nonmanu­
facturing establishments, and Federal, State, and
local governments employed the remainder of
these skilled workers.
Maintenance electricians are employed in every
State. Large numbers work in heavily industrial­
ized States such as California, New York, Penn­
sylvania, Illinois, and Ohio.
Skilled workers in this trade have the advan­
tage of being able to transfer to maintenance



electrician jobs in many different industries. With
some additional training they may also qualify
for construction electrician jobs.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Maintenance electricians can learn the skills of
their trade through formal apprenticeship pro­
grams, or by informal on-the-job training, accu­
mulating experience through a series of jobs in
their trade. However, training authorities gen­
erally agree that apprenticeship programs give
the worker more thorough knowledge of the
trade and greater job opportunities during his
working life.
The apprenticeship program for maintenance
electricians usually lasts about 4 years. Appren­
tices are given on-the-job training and related
technical classroom instruction in subjects such
as mathematics, electrical and electronics theory,
and blueprint reading. Training may include
motor repair; wire splicing; commercial and
industrial wiring; installation of light and power
equipment; installation and repair of electronic
controls and circuits; and welding, brazing, and
A young man employed in a plant as a helper
to a skilled maintenance electrician may gradu­
ally acquire the skills of this craft by observing
the skilled worker and working under his
instructions. Other electricians learn the trade
by working in the maintenance department of a
plant and picking up some of the job funda­
mentals. By moving from job to job over a long
period of time, they eventually acquire sufficient
experience to qualify as skilled craftsmen.
A young man interested in becoming a mainte­
nance electrician should include courses in mathe­
matics (such as algebra and trigonometry),
physics, electricity, and basic science in his high
school or vocational school curriculum. Because
electrical work is subject to constant change, many
experienced electricians must continue to acquire
technical knowledge and learn new skills. For
example, some maintenance electricians who
entered the trade some years ago now must learn
basic electronics in order to service the new elec­
tronic equipment being introduced in the Nation’s
industrial establishments, and large commercial
and residential buildings.

In selecting apprentice applicants or trainees,
employers look for young men who have manual
dexterity and who are interested in learning how
electrical equipment functions. These young men
need good color vision because electrical wires are
frequently identified by their different colors.
Although great physical strength is not essential,
agility and good health are important.
Some maintenance electricians must be famil­
iar with local building codes. In addition, a grow­
ing number of cities and counties require these
craftsmen to be licensed. A maintenance elec­
trician can obtain a license by passing a compre­
hensive examination which tests his knowledge
of electricity.
Skilled maintenance electricians may become
foremen who supervise the work of other main­
tenance electricians or other maintenance per­
sonnel. Occasionally, they may advance to jobs
such as plant maintenance superintendent.

Employment Outlook
The number of maintenance electricians jobs
is expected to increase by a few thousand each
year in the remainder of the 1960’s and in the
longer run, as a result of the anticipated indus­
trial growth of the country and the long-term
trend toward increased use of electrical and
electronic equipment. Many of the new job oppor­
tunities for these workers will occur in the pri­
mary metal, fabricated metal, machinery, and
chemical industries. Thousands of additional
workers also will be needed to replace electricians
who retire, die, or transfer to other fields of
work. Retirement and deaths alone may result in
about 4,000 new job openings a year during the
next 10 to 15 years.

Earnings and Working Conditions
In general, the earnings of maintenance elec­
tricians compare favorably with those of other
skilled workers. The average straight-time
hourly earnings of maintenance electricians in
establishments in 78 cities and areas in 1961-62
ranged from $2 in Greenville, S.C., to $3.46 in
Birmingham, Ala. In most of the cities surveyed,
however, average straight-time hourly earnings
for these craftsmen ranged from $2.70 to $3.35.
In establishments which operate an appren­
ticeship program, apprentices start at about 60



percent of the journeyman’s basic hourly pay
rate. They receive increases every 6 months,
moving up to 85 to 90 percent of the journeyman’s
rate during the last year of their apprenticeship.
During a single day, an electrician employed
in a plant may repair electrical equipment both
in a clean air-conditioned office and on the fac­
tory floor, surrounded by the noise, oil and grease
of machinery. Maintenance electricians may be
called upon to climb ladders, work on scaffolds,
or work in awkward or cramped positions when
installing or replacing electrical equipment and
performing other repair jobs.
Because they often work around high-voltage
industrial equipment, maintenance electricians
must be alert and accurate in carrying out their
duties. Errors in wiring installations could
have dangerous consequences both to the elec­
trician and the operating employees. The safety
principles which are now part of all training
programs have greatly reduced the frequency
of accidents. Maintenance electricians are taught
to use protective equipment and clothing, to
respect the destructive potential o f electricity,
and how to handle small electrical fires.

Various labor unions have maintenance elec­
tricians in their membership. Many of these
craftsmen are members of the International
Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. Among other
unions to which maintenance electricians belong
are the International Union of Electrical, Radio
and Machine Workers; the International Associ­
ation of Machinists; the International Union,
United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural
Implement Workers of America; and the United
Steelworkers of America. Most of the labormanagement contracts covering maintenance
electricians provide major benefit programs
which may include paid holidays and vacations;
hospitalization, medical, and surgical insurance;
life insurance; and retirement pensions.

Where To Go for More Information
The National Joint Apprenticeship and Training
Committee for the Electrical Industry,
1200 18th St. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20036.
The State Supervisor of Trade and Industrial Edu­
cation or the local Director of Vocational Educa­
tion in the State and/or city in which a person
wishes to receive training will have lists of
training institutions.

(D .O.T. 5-78.100)

Nature of Work
Millwrights are skilled workers who move and
install heavy industrial machinery and other
equipment. These workers must have a thor­
ough knowledge of the complex industrial
equipment on which they work because they fre­
quently take apart, move, put together, and aline
this equipment. Millwrights use hoists, cranes,
jacks, crowbars, wood blocking, and other rig­
ging devices to move heavy equipment. In
assembling machinery, millwrights fit bearings,
aline gears and wheels, connect belts, and attach
motors. In doing this work, they use wrenches,
screwdrivers, pliers, hammers, and other handtools. After moving and erecting equipment, mill­
wrights secure it firmly at the new site. To aline
and level equipment, they use measuring devices
such as micrometers, calipers, squares, plumb
bobs, and levels. Millwrights often work from

blueprints when preparing platforms on which
machines are to be mounted or when laying out
or installing plant equipment.
In addition to moving and installing equip­
ment, millwrights sometimes repair and maintain
conveyors, cranes, hoists, scaffolds, pumps, blow­
ers, and other industrial equipment. Such work
may include oiling and greasing machinery,
replacing worn or broken belts, and welding
metal parts. Millwrights sometimes work as
part of a maintenance team of pipefitters and
machinery repairmen in keeping a production
line operating.

Where Employed
About half of the estimated 70,000 millwrights
employed in early 1963 worked in the steel, paper,
machinery, and automobile manufacturing indus­
tries. Most of the remaining millwrights were



Courtesy of U.S. Department of the Nary

the installation of machinery and other equip­
ment, rough carpentry, welding, and the use of
structural steel, wood, and concrete. The appren­
ticeship program includes related classroom
instruction in shop mathematics, blueprint read­
ing, hydraulics, electricity, and safety. Many
companies require that apprentice applicants be
high school graduates between the ages of 18
and 26.
High school courses in mathematics, mechan­
ical drawing, and machine shop practice are
useful to young men interested in becoming
millwrights. Because millwrights often put
together and take apart complicated machinery,
mechanical aptitude is important to young men
entering the trade. Strength and agility are
other important qualifications for millwright
work, which often requires considerable lifting
and climbing.

Millwrights guide section of grinding machine into position

employed in the construction, lumber, chemicals,
and fabricated metal products industries.
Some millwrights are employed by companies
that specialize in moving and installing indus­
trial machinery on a contract basis. Others work
for machinery manufacturers who employ mill­
wrights to install their products in customers’
Millwrights work in every State. However,
about half of them are employed in the heavily
industrialized States o f Michigan, Ohio, Penn­
sylvania, Illinois, New York, and Indiana.

Training and Other Qualifications
Millwrights learn the trade by picking up
the skills informally or through apprenticeship
programs. Those workers who pick up the trade
work as helpers to skilled millwrights over a
period o f years until they acquire sufficient
knowledge and experience to be classified as
skilled workers. However, most training authori­
ties agree that apprenticeship programs give
young persons a more thorough preparation for
their skilled trade. Apprenticeship programs
generally last 4 years. Apprectices in this trade
are given shop training in dismantling, moving,
erecting, and repairing machinery and other
equipment. They are also trained in floor layout,

Employment Outlook
Employment o f millwrights is expected to
increase moderately during the 1960’s and in the
longer run. The building of new plants, the
addition of newT machinery, changes in plant
layouts, and the maintenance of increasing
amounts of heavy and complex machinery and
other equipment are factors which are expected
to increase employment o f millwrights.
The paper and pulp industry is an example
o f an industry which is expected to expand and
further mechanize its operations. Millwrights
will be needed in greater numbers in this industry
to install, move, and maintain papermaking
machines, cranes, conveyors, and other industrial
In addition to new job openings that will
be created by industrial expansion and increased
mechanization, several thousand workers will be
needed annually to replace millwrights who
transfer to other lines of work, retire, or die.
Retirements and deaths alone will probably
result in about 1,500 to 2,000 job openings

Earnings and Working Conditions
The earnings of millwrights depend mainly
upon the city where they are employed and the
type of business in which their employer is



engaged. Average straight-time hourly earnings
of millwrights employed in manufacturing and
nonmanufacturing industries in 47 areas surveyed
in 1961-62 ranged from $2.89 in ProvidencePawtucket, R.I., to $3.89 in Houston, Tex. More
than 50 percent of these workers earned at least
$3.20 an hour.
Millwrights employed by companies doing
contract installation work and by construction
companies usually have higher hourly wage
rates than those employed in manufacturing
industries. For example, the union minimum
average hourly wage rates for millwrights work­
ing in the building trades in 53 cities, as o f July 1,
1962, ranged from $3.25 an hour in Charlotte,
N.C., to $5.05 in New York City.
Wage rates for apprentices generally start at
approximately 50 percent of the skilled worker’s
rate and progress to the full rate by the end
of the training period.
Millwrights, most of whom work in factories,
ordinarily work year-round. Those who work
for construction companies and for companies
that manufacture and install machinery, or move
and install machinery on a contract basis, may
have periods of unemployment between jobs.
These workers may frequently be assigned to jobs
away from their homes.

The work of millwrights involves certain
hazards. For example, there is danger of being
struck by falling tools or other objects or by
machinery that is being moved. There also is
the danger of falling from high work places.
In addition, millwrights are subject to the usual
shop hazards, such as cuts and bruises. Accidents
have been reduced by the use of protective
devices, such as safety belts, metal hats, and shoes
with metal toes. Millwrights must frequently
work on dirty and greasy equipment.
Most millwrights belong to labor unions.
Among the unions to which these workers belong
are the International Association o f Machinists;
United Brotherhood o f Carpenters and Joiners
of America; United Steelworkers o f America;
International Union, United Automobile, Aero­
space and Agricultural Implement Workers of
America; International Brotherhood o f Pulp,
Sulphite and Paper Mill Workers; and the Inter­
national Union of Electrical, Radio and Machine
Workers. Employer-union contracts covering
millwrights usually include provisions for bene­
fits, such as paid vacations; hospitalization,
medical, and surgical insurance; life insurance;
sickness and accident insurance; and retirement

Television and Radio Servicemen
Nature of Work
Young persons who are interested in the
rapidly growing field of electronics and who,
for various reasons, will not attend college will
find many opportunities for employment as
television and radio servicemen. These skilled
workers use their knowledge of electrical and
electronic parts and circuits to install and repair
a growing number of electronic products. O f
these, television sets are by far the most promi­
nent; other major electronics products are radios
(including home, automobile, and 2-way mobile
radios), phonographs, high-fidelity sound equip­
ment, tape recorders, and public address systems.
Many servicemen specialize in repairing one kind
of equipment, for example, color television sets or
automobile radios.

Most of the skilled work done by television
and radio servicemen involves diagnosing trouble
in equipment and making necessary repairs.
Equipment may operate poorly, or break down
completely, because o f faulty tubes, transistors,
resistors, connections, and other components or
dirt, moisture and other basic troubles that affect
all electronic equipment. When servicemen turn
on television sets or other equipment that needs
repair, signs of poor performance, e.g., absence,
or distortion, of picture or sound, may tell them
what is wrong. Their job is to check and eliminate
each possible cause of trouble, beginning with
the simplest and most common cause—tube
failure. In other routine checks, they look for
loose or broken connections and for parts that
are charred or burned (a sign that too much elec­
tricity is passing through the parts).



When simple, routine checks do not locate
causes of trouble, servicemen use meters and
electronic test equipment to trace the flow of
electricity through wires and other parts. They
work back from the point where trouble appears,
measuring voltage, for example, until an unusual
or irregular measurement indicates that part of
the set causing trouble. A commonly used meter
is the vacuum tube voltmeter. Multimeters,
oscilloscopes, signal generators, and other spe­
cialized instruments also are used.
On service calls, servicemen advise customers
what is wrong with sets and whether sets must be
taken to shops for repair. They explain, in gen­
eral, what must be done to fix sets and esti­
mate the cost o f repairs. After sets are
repaired on the customers’ premises, or returned
from shops, servicemen explain what has been
done. They may further adjust the equipment to
put it in good operating condition.
Work usually done by television and radio
servicemen in homes or other places where equip­
ment is used includes making simple electrical
checks with a voltmeter, changing tubes, and
making adjustments such as focusing the picture
or correcting the color balance on a color set.
Servicemen who make customer service calls
carry tubes and other components that are
replaced frequently. Apprentices or less experi­
enced television servicemen may also install
antennas on roofs or in attics and run wires from
antennas to sets.
Radios and other equipment small enough to
be carried to shops by customers usually are
repaired by servicemen in the shops. Television
sets are repaired in shops when they develop
troubles which appear only after sets have been
operating for a few hours, or when the troubles
can be located only with test equipment ordi­
narily kept in shops. Television and radio serv­
icemen in shops often refer to wiring diagrams
and instruction books (service manuals) that list
parts, show connections within sets, and describe
causes o f trouble associated with unusual
Television and radio servicemen use soldering
irons, wire cutters, long-nosed pliers, wrenches,
screwdrivers and, sometimes, magnifying glasses
when they remove, adjust, or replace parts, com­
ponents, or complete equipment such as car

Servicemen use schematic diagram and modern test equipment
to check television receiver

radios. Such work may be time-consuming and
may require patience as well as care to avoid

Where Employed
Approximately 110,000 television and radio
servicemen were employed in early 1963. Many
were self-employed. Others worked in local serv­
ice shops, in stores that sell and service consumer
electronic products, and'in factories and service
branches operated by manufacturers o f these
Although television and radio servicemen are
employed in almost every city, most of them work
in large cities where large numbers of television
sets, radios, and other electronic equipment are
used and manufactured.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
School training in electronics is required to
become a highly skilled television and radio
serviceman capable of working on various
types o f equipment. Vocational or trade school
training in electronic subjects has helped many
men to qualify as expert television and radio
servicemen. Home study (correspondence school)
courses also may be helpful. Young men who
enter military service may wish to investigate
opportunities to get training and work experi­
ence in servicing electronic equipment, because

such experience often is valuable in civilian elec­
tronics work, including television and radio serv­
icing. From 2 to 3 years’ combined training and
on-the-job experience are required to become a
qualified television and radio serviceman. Men
without previous training may be hired as help­
ers or apprentices if they show aptitude for the
work or, like the amateur (“ ham” ) radio
operator, have a hobby in electronics.
An important part of servicemen’s training is
provided by many manufacturers and employers
who conduct training programs when new mod­
els or new products are introduced and as part of
a continuing effort to keep servicemen abreast of
the latest technical servicing and business
methods. Servicemen also keep up with technical
developments by studying manufacturers’ instruc­
tion books and technical magazines covering
electronics service work.
Television and radio servicemen need a good
background in mathematics and physics in order
to understand the equipment they work on. They
must know how electronic components work, and
why they function as they do. They must be able
to understand technical publications. Television
and radio servicemen must also be tactful and
courteous in dealing with customers.
Other essential qualifications of television
and radio servicemen are ability to manipulate
small parts and tools, good hand-eye coordi­
nation, normal hearing, and good eyesight and
color vision. Often these servicemen work with
delicate wires and parts that are identified only
by color codes.
Servicemen may advance within the service
field and become foremen or service managers.
They may also be promoted to other higher paid
work, such as technical writing, sales engineering,
design, and training. Many become owners of
independent television and radio service shops.
Others may combine a sales and service business.
Young persons interested in advancing to
higher level positions as electronic technicians or
supervisors can improve their opportunities by
taking trade school, correspondence, or technical
institute courses, or other types of advanced
courses in electronic engineering, television engi­
neering, automatic controls, engineering mathe­
matics, and other subjects related to electronics.


Frequently, television and radio servicemen are
able to obtain jobs as electronics mechanics or
technicians in manufacturing industries or gov­
ernment service.

Employment Outlook
Television and radio servicemen will continue
to have good employment opportunities during
the remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer run.
A few thousand job openings probably will
become available each year. Most of these open­
ings will occur because of the growing number
of electronic products in the home. Other job
opportunities will result from replacement o f
servicemen who transfer to other jobs, are
promoted, or who retire or die.
In 1962, about 9 out of every 10 households had
television sets. As population increases, the num­
ber of television sets will also increase. In addi­
tion, the number of homes with two or more tele­
vision sets and radios is expected to continue to
grow. Greater use of non-entertainment television
sets is also expected in business and industry, and
schools and other institutions. For example, by
using closed circuit television (television receiv­
ers showing pictures sent by wire from one or
more cameras set up in several different loca­
tions), a factory guard can check several places
at the same time, or a nurse can watch patients
in several different rooms at once. The increasing
number of stereo high fidelity sets and small
portable transistor radios will also add to the need
for competent servicemen.
Most automobiles and many taxicabs and
trucks are equipped with radios. Two-way radios
are often used by companies to keep in touch with
drivers. Growing numbers of motor vehicles
thus will result in increasing demand for radio
service work.
In recent years, improvements in television
sets and radios (such as the use of transistors in
place of tubes) have tended to reduce the amount
o f service this equipment requires, but have
increased the care, skill, and technical knowledge
needed to repair such equipment. Similar devel­
opments in the future may tend to slow down the
employment growth expected to result from
increasing use of consumer electronic products.
In the long run, however, technological develop­
ments will increase employment opportunities for
those television and radio servicemen who have



theoretical as well as practical knowledge of
electronic circuits, and know how to use the latest
test equipment. The servicing o f television sets,
radios, and related electronic equipment is a
changing field, with constant technological
advances. Servicemen will have to keep their
training up to date to cope with such changes.

Earnings and Working Conditions
According to limited information, most full
time employed skilled television and radio serv­
icemen in 1962 earned from $100 to $115 a week,
but some earned as much as $150 a week.
Starting pay was about $65 to $75 a week.
Television and radio servicemen employed in
local service shops or dealer service departments
commonly work a 6-day, 48-hour week. In large
shops, including manufacturers’ service branches,
they usually work a basic 40-hour week. Service­
men often work at night and on weekends, and for
more than 8 hours a day. Usually they receive
extra pay for overtime or night work.
Television and radio service is performed in
shops and homes where working conditions are

usually pleasant. Inside (shop) servicemen work
at benches provided with stools. Outside service­
men may spend an hour or more a day driving
between shops and customers. Some physical
strain is involved in lifting and carrying sets.
Perhaps the greatest hazard is the risk of falling
from roofs while installing antennas. Electrical
shock is another hazard, but it has rarely caused
serious injury.
Some employers of television and radio service­
men provide paid vacations and holidays after a
specified number o f years’ service. Many also
provide or help pay for health and insurance

Where To Go for More Information
Additional information about jobs in television
and radio servicing may be obtained from local
servicemen, local dealers who sell and service
television sets and other electronic equipment,
local television service associations, and manufac­
turers of television sets who provide training for
servicemen. Local vocational schools which offer
courses in television or electronics may also pro­
vide helpful information.

Watch Repairmen
(D .O .T. 4-71.510)

Nature of Work
Watch repairmen or “ watchmakers” repair,
adjust and regulate watches, clocks, chronometers,
and electromechanical and other timepieces. This
work is precise and delicate. First, the movement
of the watch is removed from the case and the
working parts, such as hands, dial, and balance
wheel assembly, are examined with the aid of a
magnifying eyeglass (called a “ loupe” ). The
repairman may then replace the mainspring,
hairspring, balance and other wheels, escape­
ments, pivots, or broken jewels, and adjust
improperly fitted wheels and other parts. The
parts may also be cleaned and oiled before the
dials, hands, crystal, and wristband are reassem­
bled. The repairman must have a keen ability to
diagnose accurately the cause of trouble, which
may often be very difficult to locate.

The development o f interchangeable massproduced parts has decreased the need for making
parts by hand, but factory-made parts sometimes
must be adjusted to insure a “ true” fit. In their
work, watch repairmen use small lathes and handtools such as tiny pliers and screwdrivers. The
repair of electric and electronic watches and
clocks requires the use of electrical meters and,
frequently, an oscilloscope.
Watch repairmen who own or work in retail
jewelry stores also do minor jewelry repairing
and may sell watches, jewelry, silverware, and
other items such as china and lamps. They may
also hire and supervise salesclerks, other watch
repairmen, jewelers, and engravers; arrange
window displays; purchase goods to be sold; and
handle other managerial duties. As supervisory
and managerial duties increase, the self-employed
watch repairman tends to spend less of his time
doing benchwork.



or microminiaturization specialist, in research,
development, and engineering laboratories, and
in Federal, State, and local government agencies.
Some watch repairmen were instructors in voca­
tional schools.
Jewelry stores, which employ most watch
repairmen, are widely scattered throughout the
country. The heaviest concentration * of these
stores is in large commercial and industrial cen­
ters such as New York City, Chicago, or Detroit.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement

Watch repairman inspects pocket watch

Where Employed
Employment of watch repairmen was estimated
to be more than 25,000 in early 1963. Most watch
repairmen, including several hundred women,
worked in retail stores. They were about equally
divided between those who were in business for
themselves as managers of leased departments
in jewelry or department stores or, most often,
as proprietors of many of the Nation’s 24,000
retail jewelry stores, and those who worked as
employees in these stores. Smaller jewelry
stores, in particular, are likely to be operated by
watchmakers who do their own repair work.
Several thousand watch repairmen operated their
own trade shops (not usually open to the public)
which specialize in watch repairs for retail stores.
Wholesale establishments, including importers of
complete watch movements, employed a few
hundred watchmakers. A few hundred more
were employed as watchmakers in other manu­
facturing plants, such as those which make pre­
cision timing instruments and electronic equip­
ment. Several thousand trained watchmakers
used their skills in jobs such as instrument maker,
repairman, or assembler; laboratory technician;

A few States—Florida, Iowa, Indiana, Ken­
tucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Oregon, Tennessee,
and Wisconsin—require watch repairmen to
obtain a license to work at the trade. To obtain
a license, they must pass an examination designed
to test their skill with tools and their knowledge
of watch construction and repair. Watch repair­
men in all States, however, can demonstrate their
ability by passing an examination given by the
American Watchmaking Institute. The certificate
awarded watch repairmen who pass this exami­
nation is widely recognized by employers as an
indication o f an acceptable standard of skill.
Many young people prepare for this trade
through courses given in private watch repair
schools. Some enter through public vocational
high school or post-high school training. Others
are trained in 3- to 4-year watch and clock repair­
ing formal apprenticeship or other on-the-job
training programs.
Watch repair schools generally have no spe­
cific educational requirements for entrance,
although most students are high school graduates.
The length of time required to complete the
course—usually 18 months to 2 years—is deter­
mined by its content, the ability of the indi­
vidual student, and whether attendance is full
or part time. In most watch repair schools, a
considerable amount of time is spent taking apart
various types of watch movements and reassem­
bling them, truing hairsprings, removing and
replacing balance staffs and balance wheels,
learning how to use a watchmaker’s lathe, and
cleaning watches. Some schools offer courses in
the repair of unusual types o f timepieces, for
example, chronographs, calendars, timers, and
new-type electric or electronic watches. Students



are required to furnish their own hand tools in
most schools. Training in instrument repair
work in the armed services can be helpful for
those who wish to become watch repairmen.
Students or watchmakers interested in employ­
ment outside of the jewelry store or trade shop
may require some training in related subjects
such as basic electronics, instrument repair, or
microminiaturization technology. Such training
is provided on-the-job in many industries.
Important qualifications for success in this
field are mechanical aptitude, finger dexterity,
a sensitive touch, good vision (with or without
glasses), and patience. For those interested in
owning or working in a retail store, salesman­
ship and a good business sense are required. Such
people should also have knowledge of business
practices, accounting, and public relations.
Beginners with sufficient funds— about $2,000
to $3,000 is needed to purchase a watch-timing
machine and other tools and equipment—may
open their own watch repair shops. However, it
is the usual practice to work ifor an experienced
watch repairman for a while before starting out
in one’s own business. Some of the watch repair­
men gradually extend their services to include
the sale of various items of jewelry and eventually
establish retail jewelry stores. Such stores require
a sizable financial investment.

Employment Outlook
Employment opportunities will continue to be
good through the 1960’s and in the longer run
for experienced watch repairmen who have
established reputations for doing high quality
work. Graduates from good watch repairing
schools will also have many opportunities for
employment, but job openings for other begin­
ners are likely to be somewhat limited, particu­
larly in jewelry stores and trade shops.
A few new jobs will become available, particu­
larly in small cities where business activities are
expanding and in newly established shopping
centers in the suburbs of large cities. In addition,
there will be a growing demand for well-trained
but inexperienced watchmakers to use their watch
repair skills to work on miniature devices, espe­
cially in industries producing scientific instru­
ments and electronic equipment. Nevertheless,

most openings will probably continue to arise from
the need to replace repairmen who transfer to other
fields of work, retire, or die. These openings
should number several hundred each year in this
small occupation.
Employment of watchmakers is likely to rise
slightly over the long run. Factors that will tend
to increase the demand for watchmakers will be
partially offset by other factors that will operate
to decrease it. For example, the number of watches
in use will undoubtedly rise as population and
family incomes increase. In addition, the trends
toward owning more than one watch, wearing
watches as costume jewelry, and buying more
children’s watches are expected to continue. The
popularity o f small watches, which need repair
more frequently than large ones, and the intro­
duction of more complicated timepieces—chrono­
graphs, calendar watches, and self-winding
watches—will also help maintain a large volume
of repair work. On the other hand, sales of
inexpensive watches which can be replaced at a
price as low as the cost o f repairing them will
probably continue to grow ; competition from per­
sons employed in other fields who repair watches
in their spare time is expected to continue; and
new types of watches are being developed which
will require less repair. In addition, electric and
electronic battery-powered watches, recent inno­
vations, may eventually reduce the amount of
watch repair work. Increased demand for minia­
turized consumer goods such as transistor radios,
television sets, and hearing aids, and the trend
in the missile, aircraft, instrument, and computer
industries towards smaller and lighter weight
components and assemblies, is expected to result
in further increase in the demand for individuals
with watchmaker training.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Salaries of most beginning watchmakers
ranged from about $60 to $90 a week in early
1963, depending on individual ability and the
type and place of employment. Experienced
journeymen employed in retail stores generally
received from $90 to $150 for a 40-hour week, and
supervisors or managers of large repair depart­
ments earn up to $200 a week. In addition, watch­
makers in retail stores sometimes receive commis­

sions based on sales of watches as well as other
items in the store. Watch repairmen who are in
business for themselves usually earn considerably
more than those working for a salary. Earnings
of the self-employed depend on the amount of
repair work done and, in the case of watchmakers
who own retail jewelry stores, the volume of sales.
Watchmakers frequently work longer than the
standard 40-hour week. Those who are selfemployed or located in small communities usually
work a 48-hour week or as long as necessary.
There may be some tendency toward eye strain,
but the work involves little physical exertion.
This light, sedentary work is frequently recom­


mended to certain handicapped and disabled

Where To Go for More Information
Information on schools giving training courses
acceptable to the trade, as well as on watch
repairing as a career, may be obtained from:
American Watchmakers Institute,
18465 James Couzens Highway, Detroit, Mich., 48235.

Information on watch repair job opportunities
in retail stores can be obtained from:
Retail Jewelers of America” Inc.,
711 14th St. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20005.

Almost every product o f American, industry
contains metal parts or is manufactured by ma­
chines made of metal parts. Many of these metal
parts are made by machining workers, who make
up the largest occupational group in the metal­
working trades. In early 1963, more than a million
workers were employed as all-round machinists,
machine tool operators, tool and die makers,
instrument makers, setup men, and layout men.
Machining workers are one of the most im­
portant groups of workers in the labor force
because they shape many o f the tools and much
of the equipment used to produce other products.
They use machine tools to form metal to desired
shapes and sizes with great accuracy. Metal parts
which must fit together exactly are first shaped
by casting, forging, rolling, or stamping, and
then finished to more precise measurements by

Nature of Work
The principal job of machining workers is to
operate machine tools. A machine tool is a powerdriven machine which holds firmly both the piece
of metal to be shaped and a cutting instrument,
or “ tool,” and brings them together so that the
metal is cut, shaved, ground, or drilled. In some
cases, the cutting tool is moved and the metal is
held stationary; in others, the metal is moved
against a stationary tool.
The most common types of machine tools are
lathes, grinding machines, drilling machines,
milling machines, cutoff machines, polishing and
buffing machines, boring mills, shapers, and
planers. Lathes turn and shape metal against a
sharp cutting tool. Grinding machines smooth
metal parts by means o f power-driven abrasive
wheels. Boring mills and drilling machines
make holes in metal. Milling and broaching
machines cut or remove excess metal with tools
which have several cutting heads. Shapers and
planers are machine tools which produce flat
692-408 O— 63-------29

Accuracy is very important in metal machin­
ing work. Metal parts sometimes are machined to
within 10 millionths of an inch. Metal products
usually are made of separate parts which must be
interchangeable and thus easily assembled by
mass-production processes.
Machining workers follow directions generally
given in drawings or blueprints that specify exact
dimensions of finished parts. They frequently use
micrometers and other precision-measuring in­
struments to check the accuracy of their work
against these specifications.
Besides operating machine tools, skilled ma­
chining workers also lay out and assemble metal
parts. They use chisels, scrapers, files, and other
small handtools in chipping, filing, and polishing
the parts so that they will fit together exactly.
The all-round machinist is a skilled worker who
can operate most types of machine tools. The
largest number of machining workers are skilled
and semiskilled machine tool operators who run
lathes, drilling machines, milling machines,
grinders, and other machine tools. Unlike all­
round machinists, machine tool operators com­
monly work with only one kind of machine tool.
A highly skilled machining job is that of tool
and die maker who specializes in making dies for
use with presses and die casting machines, devices
to guide drills into metal, and special gages to
determine whether the work meets specified tol­
erances. Another highly skilled machining job
is that of instrument maker who machines, with
great accuracy, instrument parts made of metal
or other materials. He often assembles and tests
Setup men and layout men are skilled special­
ized workers employed in plants which produce
large amounts of metal products. Setup men
adjust machine tools so that semiskilled machine
tool operators can run the machines. Layout men
mark machining directions on metal so that an
operator can perform the proper machining oper­
ations. (Detailed discussions of the types of work



performed by workers in each of these machining
occupations are presented later in this chapter.)
Since continuous attention is required when
machine tools are in operation, the work may be
rather tedious, especially on simple and repetitive
machining jobs. However, where the work is
varied and complex and standards of accuracy
are high, a worker can experience the satisfac­
tion which comes to a capable and conscientious
craftsman in a highly skilled trade.

Location of Machining Work
An estimated 570,000 machine tool operators;
360,000 machinists, layout men, and instrument
makers; 150,000 tool and die makers; and 40,000
setup men were employed in machining jobs, in
early 1963. More than four-fifths of these
workers were employed in the metalworking in­
dustries, mostly in plants that manufacture
machinery, transportation equipment such as
automobiles and aircraft, fabricated metal prod­
ucts, and electrical machinery and equipment.
(See chart 29.)
Many thousands were employed in nonmetal­
working establishments such as repair shops of
railroads and maintenance shops of factories
which make textiles, paper, glass, or chemicals.
C H A R T 29
T h o u s a n d s of ma chining work ers ,e arl y 1963"1







300 350

A small number worked in industrial and uni­
versity research laboratories and shops that
fabricate models of new products.
Machining workers are employed in every State
and in almost every city in the country. More
than half of all machining workers are employed
in California, Ohio, New York, Michigan, Illi­
nois, and Pennsylvania. Other States with large
numbers of machining workers are: New Jersey,
Massachusetts, Indiana, Connecticut, Wisconsin,
and Texas. Most instrument makers are employed
in New York City, Chicago, and a few other
large cities.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
The common method of entering skilled
machining occupations is through apprentice­
ship— a period o f formal on-the-job training
during which the new worker learns all the
aspects of his trade. He is taught to operate
machine tools, and to use handtools and meas­
uring instruments. In addition to shop training,
the apprentice is given classroom instruction in
blueprint reading, mathematics, and other related
subjects. In choosing apprentices, employers
usually prefer young men who have a high school
or trade school education. Some companies use
aptitude tests to determine whether apprentice
applicants have the necessary mechanical ability
and the temperament suited to perform this
exacting work. Machining workers must also have
good vision, and superior judgment of depth and
Most machine tool operators and some machin­
ists, tool and die makers, and instrument makers
have “ picked up” the skills of their trade infor­
mally through experience on several jobs. They
generally start in the less skilled machining jobs
and gain “ know-how” while working with experi­
enced craftsmen. They gradually advance to
more skilled jobs as they acquire experience and
knowledge. Some of these workers improve their
qualifications for the more skilled trades by tak­
ing courses in blueprint reading, electronics,
hydraulics, and shop mathematics in vocational
schools. An increasing number of machining
workers are participating in intensive training
programs provided by machinery manufacturers.
These programs train machining workers to



Employment Outlook

Machine tool operator monitors numerically controlled milling

maintain and repair the numerically controlled
machine tools being installed in a growing num­
ber o f establishments.
Because machining work is not physically
strenuous, women are sometimes employed as
machine tool operators. Relatively few- women,
however, are employed in skilled machining
Skilled machining workers have several
advancement opportunities. For example, many
can advance to supervisory positions such as fore­
man. Individuals with extensive machine shop
experience may, with specialized training, become
programers who prepare the coded paper tapes
used to operate numerically controlled machines.
Tool and die makers and instrument makers can
advance to technical positions such as tool
designer. Skilled machining workers also can
open their own tool and die shops or machine

There will be thousands o f job openings for
machining workers in the remainder of the 1960’s
and in the longer run. Most o f these openings will
result from the need to replace workers who
transfer to other fields o f work, or who retire or
A moderate increase in the number of machin­
ing workers is expected to result from the grow­
ing demand for consumer products such as appli­
ances, and for industrial goods such as
Employment opportunities
machining workers also will be favorably
affected by defense spending. Many military
products will be new products, involving new
metals or alloys and requiring special machining
Employment in the individual machining occu­
pations is expected to increase at different rates.
For example, the number of instrument makers
is expected to increase rapidly while only a mod­
erate rise is expected in the employment of
machine tool operators. Technological changes
are expected to slow the employment growth of
most machining occupations.
A new technological development is the use of
automated machining lines in which machine tools
are linked together for automatic production
operations. Cutting speeds are also increasing.
Increasing mechanization and growth in non­
metalworking industries have expanded needs for
maintenance machinists who keep mechanical
equipment in good condition. Machining workers
employed in maintenance shops tend to have
fairly steady employment over the years, because
the amount of work they must do is not wholly
dependent on changes in the volume o f produc­
tion. Maintenance work continues even when pro­
duction declines.
The numerical control o f machine tools is
another technological advance which will affect
machining workers. The use of numerically con­
trolled machine tools broadly involves the follow- •
ing sequence of operations: Engineers or drafts­
men translate part dimensions and tolerances,
cutter shapes and sizes, cutting paths and
sequences, and other data into numbers or codes
representing numbers.
These numbers are
punched on tapes or cards which are inserted

into electronic devices that translate numbers into
motions or actions such as drilling or cutting.
The machine tool operator simply installs the
tool, inserts and removes the workpiece, and
changes the tapes or cards.
Specific future effects of numerically controlled
machine tools on the employment of machining
workers could not be determined in early 1963.
However, numerical controls may greatly simplify
the jobs of many machining workers and increase
their production efficiency.
In addition to the moderate rise expected in
machining employment, the need to replace
experienced workers will create thousands of
openings. Retirements and deaths alone will pro­
vide about 25,000 job openings annually. Replace­
ments will be a particularly important factor in
the skilled machining occupations, which have
a relatively high proportion of older workers.
Also, in the less skilled occupations, shifting into
other occupations is fairly common, and many
openings will arise in this way.

Earnings and Working Conditions
The earnings of skilled machining workers gen­
erally compare favorably with those of other
skilled industrial workers. Tool and die makers
and instrument makers are the highest paid
workers in the machining group, and among the
highest paid skilled workers in manufacturing.
Earnings information for most of the individual
machining occupations is presented later in this
Most machine shops are fairly clean, well
lighted, and free from dust. Safety instructions
are an important part of job training. Because
they work with high speed machine tools and
sharp cutting instruments, workers in these occu­
pations need good safety habits. Persons work­
ing around machine tools are prohibited from
wearing loose fitting clothing and frequently wear
protective goggles.
Machining work is not physically strenuous.
The machine tools do the actual cutting while
the machining worker sets the machine, watches
the controls, and checks the accuracy of the work.
The workers, however, usually stand at their jobs
most of the day and move about frequently.
Companies that employ machining workers
generally provide paid holidays and paid vaca­


tions. Life insurance, hospitalization, medical
and surgical insurance, sickness and accident
insurance, and pensions also are often available
to machining workers.
The great majority of machining workers are
members of unions. Among the labor organiza­
tions in this field are the International Associa­
tion of Machinists; the International Union,
United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural
Implement Workers of America; the Interna­
tional LT
nion of Electrical, Radio and Machine
Workers; the United Steelworkers of America;
and the Mechanics Educational Society of

Where To Go for More Information
The National Machine Tool Builders Associa­
tion, 2139 Wisconsin Ave., Washington, D.C.,
20007— whose members build a large percentage
of all machine tools used in this country—will,
on request, supply information on career oppor­
tunities in the Machine Tool Industry.
The National Tool, Die and Precision Machin­
ery Manufacturers Association, 907 Public Square
Building, Cleveland, Ohio, 44113, offers informa­
tion on apprenticeship training, including Recom­
mended Apprenticeship Standards for Tool and
Die Makers, certified by the U.S. Department of
Labor’s Bureau of Apprenticeship and Training.
Many local offices of the State employment
service, affiliated with the U.S. Employment
Service, offer free aptitude testing to persons
interested in determining their capacity to acquire
the skills necessary for the all-round machinist
and tool and die making trades. The State
employment service also refers applicants for
apprentice programs to employers. In many
communities, applications for apprenticeship are
also received by labor-management apprentice­
ship committees.
Apprenticeship information also may be
obtained from the following international unions
(which have local offices in many cities) :
International Association of Machinists,
1300 Connecticut Ave. N W , Washington, D.C., 20036.
International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace
and Agricultural Implement Workers of America,
8000 East Jefferson Ave., Detroit, Mich., 48214.




All-Round Machinists
(D.O .T. 4-75.010 and .120)

Nature of Work
The all-round machinist is a skilled metal
worker who makes metal parts with machine
tools. A machinist can set up and operate most
types o f machine tools. His wide knowledge of
shop practice and the working properties o f steel,
cast iron, aluminum, brass, and other metals, and
his understanding of what the various machine
tools do, enable him to turn a block of metal into
an intricate part meeting precise specifications.
Variety is a key characteristic of the work of
an all-round machinist. He plans and carries
through all operations needed in turning out
machined products. He may switch from one
kind of product to another. An all-round machin­
ist selects the tools and material required for
each job and plans the cutting and finishing
operations in order to complete the finished work
according to blueprint or written specifications.
He makes standard shop computations relating
to dimensions of work, tooling, feeds, and speeds
of machining. He often uses precision-measuring
instruments such as micrometers and gages to
measure the accuracy of his work to thousandths
and even millionths o f an inch. After complet­
ing machining operations, he may finish the work
by hand, using files and scrapers, and then assem­
ble the finished parts with wrenches and screw­
drivers. The all-round machinist also “ heat
treats” cutting tools and parts to improve
Machinists employed in maintenance depart­
ments to make or repair metal parts of machines
and equipment also have a broad knowledge of
mechanical principles. They sometimes adjust
and test the parts they have made or repaired
for a machine.

All-round machinist operates milling machine

trical; fabricated metal products; primary met­
als ; electrical machinery; and transportation
equipment. Among the other industries employ­
ing substantial numbers of these workers were
the railroad, chemical, food processing, and textile
The Federal Government also
employed all-round machinists in Navy yards and
other installations.
Some all-round machinists worked in the pro­
duction departments o f metalworking factories
where large quantities o f identical parts are pro­
duced; others worked in machine shops where
a limited number of varied products were made.
An important advantage of this occupation is
that machinists can be employed in almost every
locality and industry because their skills are
required to maintain all types of machinery.

Where Employed
Almost every factory using a substantial
amount of machinery employs all-round machin­
ists to keep its mechanical equipment operating.
However, most o f the more than 300,000 all-round
machinists employed in early 1963 worked in the
following industries: Machinery, other than elec-

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
According to most training authorities, a
4-year apprenticeship is the best way to learn
the machinist trade. Many imachinists, how­
ever, have qualified without an apprenticeship
by picking up the trade over years o f varied

experience in machining jobs. Several companies
have training programs which qualify some of
their employees as machinists in less than 4 years.
A young person interested in becoming a
machinist should be mechanically inclined and
temperamentally suited to do highly accurate
work that requires concentration as well as
physical effort. A high school or vocational
school education is desirable preparation for
machinist training and is required by many
employers. Courses in mathematics and physics
and some knowledge of electronics and hydraulics
may be helpful both during and after apprentice­
ship training. Some companies require their
experienced machinists to take courses in mathe­
matics and electronics, at company expense, so
these workers can operate the numerically con­
trolled machine tools coming into greater use.
In addition, equipment builders generally pro­
vide training in the electrical, electronic, hydrau­
lic, and mechanical aspects of machine-and-control systems.
A typical machinist apprentice program lasts
4 years and consists of approximately 8,000 hours
of shop training and about 570 hours of related
classroom instruction. Shop training includes the
learning of proper machine speeds and the opera­
tion of the various types of machine tools. The
apprentice also is taught chipping, filing, hand
tapping, dowel fitting, riveting, and other hand
operations. In the classroom, the apprentice stud­
ies blueprint reading, mechanical drawing, shop
mathematics, and shop practices.
A machinist who has just finished his appren­
tice training often is assigned the job of operat­
ing a single type of machine tool. With addi­
tional experience, he may be assigned jobs requir­
ing him to operate several types of machine tools
as well as to perform hand operations. Some
journeymen machinists, however, remain machine
tool specialists and do highly skilled work with
one type of machine tool.
Numerous promotional opportunities are avail­
able to all-round machinists. Many advance to
foreman o f a section or to other supervisory jobs.
With additional training, others may become tool
and die makers or instrument makers. A skilled
machinist has excellent opportunities to advance
into other technical jobs in process planning,


machine programing, and tooling. Machinists
can also open their own machine shops.

Employment Outlook
A moderate increase in the number o f all-round
machinists is expected during the remainder of
the 1960’s and in the longer run, as a result o f the
anticipated expansion of metalworking activities.
However, most job openings will arise from the
need to replace experienced machinists who
transfer to other fields of work, or who retire or
die. In this large occupation, retirements and
deaths alone will result in about 7,000 job
openings annually.
The employment o f machinists is expected to
increase, especially in maintenance shops, as
industries continue to use a greater volume o f
complex machinery and equipment. Skilled
maintenance machinists are needed to prevent
costly breakdowns in highly mechanized plants
where machine tools often are linked together by
transfer equipment. In such plants, a breakdown
of one machine may stop many other machines.

Earnings and Working Conditions
The earnings of all-round machinists compare
favorably with those of other skilled factory
Maintenance machinists employed in various
manufacturing industries in 62 areas surveyed in
1961-62 received average straight-time hourly
earnings ranging from $1.96 in Greenville, S.C.,
to $3.49 in Birmingham, Ala. Average straighttime hourly earnings of maintenance machinists
employed in the following cities were:
Los Angeles-Long Beach.
Minneapolis-St. Paul____
New York_______________
Portland, O r e g ._________
Rockford, 111.___________
San Francis co -O a k la n d ..






Machinists must follow strict safety regulations
when working around high-speed machine tools.
The greater use o f safety goggles and other pro­
tective devices in recent years has reduced the
accident rate for these workers.

See introductory section of this chapter for
a discussion of nonwage benefits received by
machining workers, unions that organize these
workers, and where to go for more information.

Machine Tool Operators
(D .O.T. 4-78.000 through .589 and 6-78.000 through .589)

Nature of Work
Machine tool operators shape metal to precise
dimensions by the use of machine tools. Although
some operators can operate several tools, most
can operate only one or two machine tools. Many
operators are essentially machine tenders who per­
form simple, repetitive operations which can be
learned quickly. Other machine tool operators,
however, are much more skilled and can perform
complex and varied machining operations.
The work of skilled machine tool operators is
similar to that of all-round machinists, except
that often it is limited to a single type of machine
and involves little or no hand fitting or assembly
work. (By contrast, all-round machinists can
operate almost every machine tool.) The skilled
machine tool operator plans and sets up the cor­
rect sequence of machining operations in accord­
ance with blueprints, layouts, or other instruc­
tions. He adjusts speed, feed, and other controls
and selects the proper cutting tools for each
operation. Adjustments may be necessary during
machining operations, and changes in setup also
may be required. Therefore, the skilled operator
must be able to use all the special attachments of
his machine. Upon completing his work, he checks
measurements with micrometers, gages, and other
precision-measuring instruments to see whether
they meet specifications. The skilled machine tool
operator also may select cutting and lubricating
oils used to cool metal and tools during machining
The majority o f machine tool operators are
much less skilled than the operators described
above. A typical job of a semiskilled operator is
to place rough metal stock in a machine tool on
which the speeds, feeds, and operation sequence
have already been set by a skilled worker. The
operator watches the machine and calls his super­
visor when anything unusual happens. Special,

easy-to-use gages help him to measure work
quickly and accurately. The operator with limited
training may make minor adjustments to keep
his machine tool operating, but he depends on
skilled machining workers for major adjustments.
Lathes, drill presses, boring machines, grinding
machines, milling machines, and automatic screw
machines are among the machine tools used by
machine operators. Both skilled and semiskilled
operators have job titles based upon the kind of
machine they operate, such as engine lathe opera­
tor, milling machine operator, and drill press

Where Employed
Machine tool operators are primarily employed
in factories that manufacture fabricated metal
products, transportation equipment, and machin­
ery in large quantities. Skilled machine tool
operators work in production departments,
maintenance departments, toolrooms, and job
shops. Because o f their limited training, few
semiskilled operators work in maintenance de­
partments or in job shops.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Most machine tool operators learn their skills
on the job. A new worker usually starts by
observing a skilled operator at work. When the
learner first operates a machine, he is supervised
closely by a more experienced worker. The new
worker learns how to use measuring instruments
and to make elementary computations needed in
shop work. He gradually acquires experience and
learns to operate a machine tool, read blueprints,
and plan the sequence of machining work.
Individual ability and effort largely determine
how long it takes to become a machine tool
operator. Semiskilled machine tool operators



generally learn their jobs within a few months.
A period of iy 2 to 2 years of on-the-job training
and experience generally is required to become
a skilled machine tool operator. Some skilled
machine tool operators’ jobs are filled by men
who have completed machinists’ apprenticeships.
Some companies have formal training programs
to acquaint new employees with the details of
machine tool operation and machining practice.
Although there are no special educational
requirements for semiskilled operator jobs, young
persons seeking these jobs can improve their job
opportunities by completing courses in mathe­
matics and blueprint reading. In hiring unskilled
operators, employers often look for persons who
have mechanical aptitude and some experience
working with machinery.
Skilled machine tool operators can advance
to jobs as all-round machinists and tool and die
makers. They may also advance to process plan­
ning, machine programing, and maintenance jobs.

bination of both methods of wage payments.
Operators employed in production shops are usu­
ally classified as class A, class B, and class C
operators, according to their skill level. Class
A operators are the most highly skilled and
usually are paid the highest rates. In 21 selected
areas surveyed in March-June 1962, class A
machine tool operators had average straight-time
hourly earnings ranging from $2.43 in Dallas,
Tex., to $3.26 in St. Louis, Mo. The average
earnings of class B operators in a majority of
the areas were at least 30 cents an hour lower
than the earnings of class A operators. Similarly,
the hourly earnings of class C operators were at
least 30 cents below the level of class B operators
in a majority of the areas. Average straight-time
hourly earnings for class A drill press, <
lathe, and milling machine operators were as
follow s :

Employment Outlook

_ _ _ _ _
Boston. _
H o u s to n ____
Los Angeles-Long Beach____
Minneapolis-St. Paul
Newark-Jersey City
New York City
Portland (Oreg.)
St. Louis
San Francisco-Oakland _

Employment of machine tool operators is
expected to rise moderately during the remainder
of the 1960’s and in the longer run. Most job
opportunities, however, will arise from the need
to replace experienced workers who transfer to
other jobs, retire, or die. Eetirements and deaths
alone may result in about 12,000 job openings
each year.
Technological developments will affect both the
number and skill requirements of machine tool
operators. The continued development and use
of faster and more versatile automatic machine
tools will result in greater output per operator.
Future widespread use of numerically controlled
machine tools would also slow employment of
machine tool operators. (See discussion on page
435.) Workers with thorough backgrounds in
machining operations, mathematics, blueprint
reading, and good working knowledge of the
properties of metals will be better able to adjust
to future technological changes and to transfer
to new jobs in the machining field.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Machine tool operators are paid on an hourly
rate or incentive basis, or on the basis of a com­

D r ill p r e s s
o p e r a to r s,
cla ss A

$2. 85
2. 79


E n g in e
o p e ra to rs,
cla ss A




M il l in g ,
m a ch in e
op era tors
cla ss A


3. 14
2. 54



2. 61

Machine tool operators are required to wear
protective goggles and to avoid wearing loosefitting garments when working around high speed
machine tools. Increasing emphasis upon these
and other safety regulations has reduced the acci­
dent rate for these workers.
See introductory section of this chapter for
a discussion of nonwage benefits received by
machining workers, unions that organize these
workers, and where to go for more information.




Tool and Die Makers
(D.O .T. 4-76.010, .040, and .210)

Nature of Work

Where Employed

Tool and die makers g,re highly skilled, creative
workers whose products—tools, dies, and special
guiding and holding devices— are the basis of
mass production in metalworking industries. Tool
makers specialize in producing jigs and fixtures
(which are devices required to hold metal while
it is being shaved, stamped, or drilled). They
also make gages and other measuring devices
which are used in manufacturing precision metal
parts. Die makers construct metal forms (dies)
which are used in stamping and forging opera­
tions to shape metal. They also make metal molds
used in die-casting and in molding plastics. Tool
and die makers also repair dies, gages, jigs, and
fixtures. Some tool and die makers help design
tools and dies.
In comparison with most other machining work­
ers, tool and die makers have a broader knowl­
edge o f machining operations, shop practices,
mathematics, and blueprint reading, and can work
to closer tolerances and do more precise hand­
work. Tool and die makers use almost every
type o f machine tool and precision-measuring
instrument. They work with all metals and alloys
commonly used in manufacturing.

More than 150,000 tool and die makers were
employed in early 1963. The largest numbers
were employed in plants making industrial, con­
struction, and farm machinery and equipment.
The automobile, aircraft, and other transporta­
tion equipment industries also employed large
numbers of tool and die makers. Several thou­
sand o f these craftsmen worked in small tool
and die jobbing shops, making tools, dies, and
other machine tool accessories for use in metal­
working factories.
Companies manufacturing
electrical machinery and fabricated metal prod­
ucts were other important employers of tool
and die makers. Many nonmetalworking indus­
tries also employed tool and die makers.

Apprentice receives pointers from experienced tool and die

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Tool and die making requires several years of
varied training and experience which can be
obtained through formal apprenticeship or equiv­
alent on-the-job training. Since this work is
highly skilled, persons planning to enter the trade
should have a good working knowledge o f mathe­
matics and physics as well as considerable
mechanical ability, finger dexterity, and a liking
for painstaking work. In selecting apprentices,
most employers prefer young men with high
school or trade school education. Some employers
test apprentice applicants to determine their
mechanical aptitudes and their abilities in
A tool and die apprenticeship ordinarily lasts
4 or 5 years. Most o f the time is devoted to prac­
tical shop training, but some classroom work also
is part o f the training program. During shop
training, the apprentice learns to operate major
machine tools, such as lathes and milling
machines. He learns to use handtools in fitting
and assembling tools, gages, and other mechanical
equipment. Tool and die maker apprentices study
heat treating and other metalworking processes.
Classroom training in shop mathematics, shop
theory, mechanical drawing, tool designing, and

blueprint reading also is given to apprentices.
After apprenticeship, several years’ experience
often is necessary to qualify for more difficult tool
and die work. Some companies have separate
apprenticeship programs for toolmaking and
Many metal machining workers have become
tool and die makers without completing formal
apprenticeships. These men, after years of
experience as machine tool operators or as ma­
chinists and after vocational or correspondence
school training, have developed into all-round
workers who can skillfully perform almost any
metal machining operation, including tool and
die making.
The increasing complexity of modern machin­
ery and metalworking equipment is raising the
technical requirements for tool and die making.
A knowledge of mathematics, the basic sciences,
electronics, and hydraulics will give young per­
sons entering this occupation greater opportuni­
ties to further their careers.
An early investment in thorough training for
this occupation may lead to better paying jobs
in the future. Men who have had tool and die
training often advance to supervisory and admin­
istrative positions in industry. Many tool and die
makers become tool designers. Some open their
own tool and die shops.

Employment Outlook
An increasing number of tool and die makers
will be needed during the 1960’s and in the longer
run, as a result of the anticipated expansion of
metalworking activity. In addition, many open­
ings may become available as experienced tool
and die makers transfer to other fields of work,
retire, or die. Retirements and deaths alone will
provide about 3,500 job openings annually.
The anticipated long-range expansion in the
missile and spacecraft, machinery, electrical
equipment, and other metalworking industries
will result in a continued increase in the employ­
ment of tool and die makers. Their skills will be
needed to make the tools and dies used to produce
the large numbers o f identical metal parts
required in these industries. They will also be
needed to help put many technological develop­


ments into effect. However, numerically con­
trolled machining operations may require fewer
of the special tools and jigs and fixtures which
are now made by tool and die makers. (See
page 435 for a discussion of numerical control and
other technological changes.)
Tool and die makers, as a group, have a longer
working life than many other workers in the
labor force. Their jobs require extensive skill
and knowledge which can be acquired only after
years of experience. For this reason, companies
are reluctant to lay off tool and die makers, even
when production is decreased. Furthermore, tool
and die makers have greater occupational mobility
than other workers. They can transfer to jobs
as instrument makers or machinists, or find jobs
in other industries.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Tool and die makers are among the highest
paid metal machining workers. In March-June
1962, average straight-time hourly earnings of
tool and die makers in machinery manufacturing
job shops in the following cities were:
$2. 73
2. 98
Los Angeles-Long Beach_____________________________
Minneapolis-St. Paul_________________________________
Newark-Jersey C ity__________________________________
New York C ity________________________________________
St. Louis_______________________________________________

Tool and die makers in various manufacturing
industries in 58 areas surveyed in 1961-62 were
paid average straight-time hourly earnings rang­
ing from $2.62 in Miami, Fla., to $3.65 in San
Francisco-Oakland, Calif.
Because tool and die makers do precision work,
the areas in plants or shops where they work
are generally clean and well-lighted. Tool and
die makers stand part of the time when they
are operating machine tools. At other times they
do handwork at benches. Sometimes they operate
machines to test tools and dies they have made.



Good safety habits are necessary for tool and
die makers because they work with high-speed
machine tools and sharp cutting instruments.
The use of safety devices has reduced the injury
rate for machining workers.

See introductory section of this chapter for a
discussion of nonwage benefits received by ma­
chining workers, unions that organize these work­
ers, and where to go for more information.

Instrument Makers (Mechanical)
(D.O .T. 4-75.130)

Nature of Work
The increasing use of instruments in production,
research, development, and testing work in indus­
try and Government, is making the job of the
instrument maker increasingly important. Instru­
ment makers (also called experimental machinists
and modelmakers) work closely with engineers
and scientists in translating designs and ideas
into experimental models, special laboratory
equipment, and custom instruments. They also
modify existing instruments for special purposes.
Experimental devices constructed by these crafts­
men are used, for example, to regulate heat,
measure distance, record earthquakes, and control
industrial processes. The mechanical instrument
parts and models made by these workers range
from simple gears to intricate parts of navigation
systems used in guided missiles. Some instrument
makers (who are not discussed in this brief)
specialize in installing electric and electronic
instrument components.
Instrument makers fabricate metal parts by
operating machine tools such as lathes and mil­
ling machines, and by using handtools such as files
and chisels. Because accuracy is important, they
measure finished parts with micrometers and
standard optical measuring instruments.
Instrument makers usually work from rough
sketches, verbal instructions, or ideas rather than
detailed blueprints. Thus, in making parts, they
frequently use considerable imagination and
ingenuity. Instrument makers sometimes work
on parts which must not vary from specifications
by more than ten millionths of an inch. To meet
these standards, instrument makers commonly
use special equipment or precision devices, such
as the electronic height gage, which are used
only infrequently by other machining workers.
They occasionally work with a variety of materi-

Instrument maker uses ultrasonic machine tool

als, including plastics and rare metals such as
silver and platinum.
An instrument maker may construct instru­
ments from start to finish—making and assem­
bling all the parts and testing finished instru­
ments for proper operation. However, in large
shops or where electrical or electronic components
are to be incorporated into an instrument, an
instrument maker frequently works with other
instrument makers, such as electronic specialists,
each making a part of a complicated instrument.
Because they usually work on their own and
have highly developed manual skills and reason­
ing abilities, instrument makers have considerable
prestige among their fellow employees.

Where Employed
Many instrument makers are employed by
firms which manufacture instruments. Research
and development laboratories also employ instru­
ment makers to make the special devices required
in scientific research. The Federal Government
employed about 1,200 instrument makers in early
The main centers of instrument making are
located in and around a few large cities, particu­
larly New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, and
Washington, D.C.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Most instrument makers advance from the
ranks of machinists or skilled machine tool
operators. These craftsmen, working at first
under close supervision and doing the simpler
jobs, usually need at least 1 or 2 years of instru­
ment shop experience to qualify as instrument
Other instrument makers learn their trade
through instrument-maker apprenticeships which
generally last 4 or 5 years. A typical 4-year in­
strument maker apprenticeship program consists
of approximately 8,000 hours of shop training and
about 570 hours of related classroom instruction.
The apprentice’s shop training emphasizes the use
o f machine tools, handtools, and measuring in­
struments, and the working properties of various
materials. Classroom instruction covers related
technical subjects such as mathematics, physics,
and blueprint reading. The apprentice must learn
enough shop mathematics to enable him to plan
his work and use handbook formulas. A basic
knowledge of mechanical principles is needed in
solving gear and linkage problems.
For apprenticeship programs, employers gen­
erally prefer applicants who have a high school
education, including courses in algebra, geometry,
trigonometry, science, and machine shop work.
Further technical schooling in electricity and elec­
tronics is often desirable, and may make possible
future promotions to technician positions.
A young man interested in becoming an instru­
ment maker should have a strong interest in
mechanical subjects and a better-than-average
ability to work with his hands. He must have
initiative and resourcefulness, because instrument


makers often work alone and almost always under
minimum or no supervision. Since the instrument
maker often faces new problems, he must be able
to develop original solutions. The instrument
maker frequently must visualize the relationship
between individual parts and the complete instru­
ment. He must understand how the instrument
is used and the principles of its operation.
Because of the nature of his work, the instrument
maker has to be very conscientious and take
considerable pride in creative work.
As the instrument maker’s skill improves and
as he broadens his knowledge, he may advance
to increasingly responsible positions. About 10
years’ experience is required to rise to the top
skill level in instrument making. With additional
training beyond the high school level in subjects
such as physics and machine design, some instru­
ment makers may advance to technician jobs.
In these jobs, technicians plan and estimate time
and material requirements for the manufacture
of instruments, or provide specialized support to
professional personnel. Others may become
supervisors of less skilled instrument makers and
help in their training.

Employment Outlook
The employment of instrument makers is
expected to continue to increase rapidly during
the 1960’s and in the longer run, but the number
of new openings in any one year will be limited
by the size of the occupation. Probably not more
than 40,000 workers were employed in this rela­
tively small occupation in early 1963.
Growing numbers of instrument makers will
be needed to make models of new instruments
that may be mass-produced in the future, and
also to make custom or special purpose instru­
ments that are not needed in large numbers. Many
devices made by these craftsmen will be needed
in the expanding fields of atomic energy, guided
missiles, and industrial “ automation” (the use of
instruments to direct and control manufacturing
processes). Also, many new precision instru­
ments, which will be even more versatile and
sensitive than those in current use, can be expected
to emerge from growing research and develop­
ment programs of universities, Government agen­
cies, private laboratories, and manufacturing
firms. New instruments are needed to solve many




technical and scientific problems. For example,
scientists who work with atomic reactors need
better control systems for handling radioactive
materials, as well as improved “ thermometers”
which can measure temperatures in the millions
of degrees.
In addition to new job opportunities which
will result from expanded industrial and scien­
tific requirements, there will be several hundred
new openings annually for these craftsmen as a
result of promotions to technican positions, trans­
fers to other fields of work, and retirements and

Earnings and Working Conditions
Earnings of instrument makers compare favor­
ably with those of other highly skilled metal­
workers. Wage data obtained from a small num­
ber of instrument manufacturers indicate that
wages o f these craftsmen in late 1962 generally

ranged from $2.80 to $3.55 an hour. Instrument
makers employed by the Federal Government in
Washington, D.C., were receiving from $3.13 to
$3.52 an hour.
Instrument shops usually are not as noisy as
some other places where machining workers are
employed. Generally, the machines do not run
continuously and many of the machine tools are
quite small.
Serious work accidents are not common among
instrument makers, but machine tools and flying
particles sometimes cause finger, hand, and eye
injuries. Safety rules generally require the wear­
ing of special glasses, aprons, tightly fitted
clothes, and shirts with elbow-length sleeves; the
wearing of neckties is prohibited.
See introductory section of this chapter for
a discussion of nonwage benefits received by
machining workers, unions that organize these
workers, and where to go for more information.

Setup Men (Machine Tools)
(D .O.T. 4-75.160)

Nature of Work
The setup into, often called a machine tool
job setter, is a skilled specialist employed in
plants and machine shops that do machining
in large volume. His main job is to set up
machine tools—that is, to get machine tools ready
for use by semiskilled operators. He may also
explain to these workers the operations to be
performed, and show them how to check the
accuracy of their work. Usually a setup man is
assigned a number of machine tools, which often
are one type, such as turret lathes. However, he
may set up several different machine tools such as
milling machines and automatic screw machines.
Working from drawings, blueprints, written
specifications, or job layouts, he determines the
rate at which the material is to be fed into the
machines, operating speeds, tooling, and opera­
tion sequence. He then selects and installs the
proper cutting or other tools, and adjusts guides,
stops, and other controls. He may make trial
runs and adjust the machine and tools until the
parts produced conform to specifications. The
machine is then turned over to a semiskilled

operator. After the machine tool has been run­
ning a while, the setup man may make additional
adjustments to maintain accurate production.

Where Employed
Most setup men employed in early 1963 worked
in factories that manufacture fabricated metal
products, transportation equipment, and machin­
ery. These workers usually were employed by
large companies which employed many semi­
skilled machine tool operators. They usually
were not employed in maintenance shops or in
small jobbing shops.

Training and Other Qualifications
To become a setup man, a worker usually must
qualify as an all-round machinist or skilled
machine tool specialist. A setup man must be
thoroughly trained in the operation of one or
more machine tools. He must read blueprints
and make computations in selecting speeds and
feeds for machine tools. He also must be able
to explain to a semiskilled machine tool operator



how to perform machining operations and how to
check machining accuracy. Above all, a setup
man must be skilled in selecting the sequence of
operations so that metal parts will be made
exactly to specifications. Jobs for setup men
usually are filled from within a shop by promo­
tion or reassignment.

Employment Outlook
Employment of setup men is expected to
increase moderately during the remainder of the
1960’s and in the longer run. This small occu­
pation will provide relatively few job opportuni­
ties for new workers. Most of these openings will
result from the need to replace setup men who

transfer to other jobs, are promoted, or who retire
or die.
The growing use o f numerically controlled
machine tools is a major factor which is expected
to limit employment growth in this occupation.
(See discussion on page 435.) The use o f these
machines may also change the duties of setup
men. Setup men then may only preset tools, in­
struct operators, and check the first few parts
that are produced. Since setup men are skilled
workers, their chances for advancement or trans­
fer into other jobs will remain good.
See introductory section o f this chapter for
a discussion of nonwage benefits received by
machining workers, unions that organize these
workers, and where to go for more information.

Layout Men
(D.O.T. 4-75.140)

Nature of Work
The layout man is a highly skilled specialist
who marks metal castings, forgings, or metal
stock to indicate where and how much machining
is needed. His work enables other workers to use
machine tools simply by following his lines,
points, and other instructions. He uses many
instruments, such as the scriber, with which he
marks lines on the surface o f the metal; the
center punch, to indicate the centers on the ends
o f metal pieces to be machined or drilled; the
keyseat or box rule, for drawing lines and laying
off distances on curved surfaces; dividers, for
transferring and comparing distances; L- or Tsquares for determining right angles; and cali­
pers and micrometers for accurate measurement.
Not only must the layout man work with extreme
accuracy, but he also must be familiar with the
operation and capabilities cif standard machine

products, machinery, and transportation equip­

Where Employed
Layout men work primarily in the mass-pro­
duction metalworking industries employing large^
numbers of machine tool operators. Most layout
men work in plants producing fabricated metal

Courtesy of U.S. Department of the Navy

Layout man marks lines and reference points with surface gage
to guide machine tool operator



Training and Other Qualifications
From 6 to 10 years’ training and experience
are needed to develop the skill for this occupa­
tion. Required training includes a machinist
apprenticeship, or an equivalent knowledge of
machine tools, machining qualities of metals, and
the proper sequence of machining operations.
Layout men must learn to visualize the sequence
o f machining operations so they can correctly
prepare detailed work plans for less skilled work­
ers. A layout man must be well trained in mathe­
matics and blueprint reading, and be able to use
various precision-measuring tools. Mechanical
ability and a liking for painstaking work are
other important qualifications for layout men.
These skilled jobs usually are filled from within
an establishment by promotion or reassignment.

Employment Outlook
Employment is expected to increase slightly in
this small occupation during the 1960’s and in the

longer run. Anticipated growth in metalworking
industries—particularly in plants employing large
numbers of machine tool operators— will cause
employment of layout men to increase. Replace­
ment needs, however, will provide most o f the
job opportunities for skilled machinists to be
promoted to jobs as layout men.
The increasing use of numerically controlled
machine tools is a major factor which is expected
to limit employment growth in this occupation.
(See discussion on page 435.) However, correct
positioning of metal stock and tools will continue
to be important, and layout men will be needed
to mark accurate reference points. In addition,
layout men can easily transfer to other work such
as process planning, which will become more
important with further technological develop­
See introductory section of this chapter for a
discussion of nonwage benefits received by machin­
ing workers, unions that organize these workers,
and where to go for more information.

Forging is one o f the principal methods of
working and shaping metal, others being machin­
ing, casting, rolling, and stamping. In the
forging process, metal is first made glowing hot
in special types of furnaces and then shaped
through pounding and squeezing by hammers
and presses. Shaping metal by forging has been
done for centuries by blacksmiths, but the mod­
ern forge shop, by substituting heavy power
equipment and precision die blocks for the black­
smith’s hand hammer and anvil, can do it much
more rapidly and accurately.
Forged metal is strong and is used for many
products which must withstand great stress.
Examples of forged articles include automobile
crankshafts, gears, screwdriver blades, pliers,
wrenches, scissors, and many parts for aircraft,
missiles, and spacecraft. Most forged products
are made of steel, but aluminum, brass, bronze,
and other metals are also forged. Some forgings
weigh less than a pound, but others weigh many
This chapter describes the major kinds of
forging occupations found in forge shops; it does
not discuss machining, maintenance, custodial,
or other workers who may be employed in forge
shops but who are not directly engaged in the
forging process. (For a detailed description of
the duties, working conditions, and job prospects
for blacksmiths, who do work similar to that of
many forge shop workers, see the statement on
blacksmiths, p. 482.)

Nature of Work
Before metal can be shaped by hammers and
presses, workers known as heaters must first heat
it in intensely hot furnaces. Then drop hammer
operators, hammersmiths, press smiths, upsettermen, and other workers manipulate the glowing
hot metal between a pair of metal forms, called
dies. These dies are attached to power hammers
or presses which pound or squeeze the metal with
tremendous but controlled force to form it into

the shape desired. Finally, trimmers, chippers,
grinders, and other workers remove rough edges,
excess metal, and other imperfections from
completed forgings, and perform other finishing
Two kinds of dies are used for forging—the
closed die, which has a hollow space shaped to
the form of the metal part to be forged, and the
open die, which is flat and more closely resembles
the blacksmith’s hammer. Closed dies are used
where the need for large quantities of identical
forgings (for example, automobile crankshafts)
justifies their expense. Open dies are used to
produce relatively small numbers of forged parts,
or to forge an object too large for closed dies.
The basic equipment used by forge shop work­
ers consists of various types of power hammers,
power presses, dies, and furnaces, and also hand
hammers, tongs, and measuring devices such as
calipers and rules. Forging equipment is gener­
ally operated by crews of 2 to 10 men, who usu­
ally specialize on a particular kind of hammer
or press. Duties of the more important forge
shop occupations are as follows:
Hammersmiths (D.O.T. 4-86.120) are skilled
workers who operate power hammers, equipped
with open dies, that pound pieces of hot metal
called blanks or stock into desired shapes. The
precision of parts forged with flat open dies is
greatly dependent on the skill of the hammer­
smith. He interprets blueprints, drawings, and
sketches to determine how to work the metal
under the hammer. He determines the force of
the hammer so that the piece being forged will
be shaped to specifications. He decides whether
the metal being worked needs additional heat­
ing. He may use various forming tools under
the hammer to produce angles and curves.
He supervises a crew consisting o f a hammer
driver (also called hammer runner) whose main
duty is to operate controls of the hammer to
regulate the force of the forging blow ; a crane­
man, who transfers metal blanks from furnace


to hammer and manipulates metal under the
hammer; a heater, who heats metal to correct
forging temperatures; and one or more helpers.
Drop hammer operators (D.O.T. 4-86.110),
often called drop hammermen or drop forgers,
are skilled forgemen whose work differs from
that of the hammersmith in that they operate
power hammers equipped with closed rather than
open dies. Generally, the larger the drop hammer
and the larger or more intricate the shape of the
metal object to be formed, the greater the skill
required of the drop hammerman. With the
assistance of helpers and heaters, the drop
hammerman performs such duties as setting dies
in the drop hammer, controlling the force of the
forging blow, positioning and manipulating
metal under the hammer, and determining
whether additional heat may be needed for the
metal being forged.
Press smiths (D.O.T. 4^86.125), also called
forging press operators, operate huge forging
presses equipped with either open or closed dies.
Their work differs from that of the hammer­
smith or the drop hammer operator mainly in
that they shape and form hot metal by pressing
or squeezing rather than by hammering or pound­
ing. They must know how to control the heating
o f metals, regulate the pressure o f their machines,
and position metal stock between the dies. Their
duties may also include setting up dies in the
Skills o f operators of open die forging presses
are similar to those o f hammersmiths. Both
types o f workers manipulate metal blanks
between two open dies; both must be able to
understand blueprints, drawings, or sketches in
order to transform heated metal into finished
forgings; and both may supervise crews com­
posed o f an assistant operator, a craneman, a
heater, and several helpers.
Closed die press operators work to more exact­
ing specifications than press smiths using open
dies, but do not need as much manipulating
skill because the closed dies determine the shape
of the forging. The closed die press operator
may supervise a small crew or may work alone.
Upsettermen (D.O.T. 4-86.125) operate upset
machines, which shape hot metal by applying
pressure through the horizontal movement o f one
closed die against another. This process differs
692-^08 0— 63--- -30

from that of forging hammers and presses, which
shape metal by dropping or pressing an upper
die down on a lower one.
With the help o f a small crew of a heater and
helpers, the upsetterman performs such duties as
aligning dies, positioning metal stock between the
dies, adjusting the machine’s pressure on the
metal stock, and controlling the heating o f the
metal. Deep-socket wrenches, aircraft engine
cylinders, bolts, and valves are examples of
products made in large quantities on upset
Heaters (D.O.T. 4-88.081) control the supply
of fuel and air in furnaces in order to obtain the
correct temperature for the kind of metal and
object being forged. Temperature gages and
observation of the metal’s color help the heater
determine when the correct temperature has been
reached. The heater’s duties also include trans­
ferring, w ith tongs or mechanical moving equip­
ment, heated metal from furnace to hammer or
press, and keeping furnaces clean.
Inspectors (D.O.T. 4-86.162) check forgings
for size, shape, quality, and other specifications.
Some inspectors examine forged pieces for flaws

Drop hammerman, heater, and helper forge metal in closed-die
power hammer

and faulty workmanship while the forgings are
still hot; others inspect forgings after they have
been trimmed and cleaned. Inspection may be
done visually or with micrometers, calipers, and
other measuring devices., Checking for flaws may
also be done with machines which test for
strength and hardness, electronic testing devices,
and other equipment.
Die sinkers (D.O.T. 4-76.010) are highly skilled
workers who make the closed dies that are used
on some forging hammers and presses. Working
from a blueprint or drawing, a die sinker traces
the outline of the object to be forged on two
matched blocks of steel. He then carves the
shape of this object in the steel blocks, using
drill presses and other machine tools. He
smooths and finishes the die cavity, using small
files and other handtools. Finally, he makes a
sample casting from the completed dies and
checks all measurements with a micrometer and
other precision measuring instruments.
Many forge shop workers are employed to
clean and finish forgings. For example, trimmers
(D.O.T. 6-88.717) remove excess metal from
forged pieces with presses or hammers equipped
with trimming dies. Chippers (D.O.T. 8-78.10)
use power hammers to remove imperfections.
Grinders (D.O.T. 8-77.10) remove rough edges
from completed forgings with mechanically pow­
ered abrasive wheels. Sandblasters and shotblasters (D.O.T. 6-82.720) operate sandblasting or
shotblasting equipment to clean and smooth forg­
ings. Picklers (D.O.T. 8-74.13) dip forgings in
an acid solution to remove surface scale and
reveal surface defects. Hardeners or heat treaters
(D.O.T. 4-87.220) heat and cool forgings under
controlled conditions, to make them last longer.
They produce forgings of specified degrees of
hardness and strength by cooling them in the air
or in baths of water, oil, or brine.

Where Employed
Approximately 70,000 workers were employed
in forge shops in early 1963. About three-fourths
of these worked in independent shops, that is,
shops that produce forgings for sale. The rest
were employed in forging departments of auto­


mobile, steel, farm machinery, handtool, struc­
tural and ornamental metal products, and other
types of plants which use forgings in their final
Employment of forge shop workers is concen­
trated mainly in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan,
and Illinois. Forge shops are usually located near
steel producing centers which provide steel for
forgings, as well as near metalvurking plants
which are the major users of forged products.

Training and Other Qualifications
Most forge shop workers learn their skills
through on-the-job training and work experience.
They generally join a hammer or press crew as
a helper, or, in some plants, as a heater. As they
acquire experience, they progress to more skilled
jobs. Advancement to the skilled job of hammer­
smith, for example, requires 4 or 5 years of onthe-job training and experience.
A few forge shops offer apprentice training
programs for crafts such as die sinker, heat
treater, drop hammer operator, hammersmith,
and press smith. The programs, which generally
last 4 years and in the case of die sinkers from
4 to 8 years, give the apprentice a combination
of classroom training and practical experience in
using the tools and equipment of the trade. For
example, hammersmith apprentices learn about
the properties of metals and how to operate
power hammers and furnaces, use handtools and
welding equipment, and read blueprints.
Training requirements for inspectors vary.
Those who inspect rough forgings visually or
with simple gages can usually perform their
jobs after on-the-job training lasting only a few
weeks. Those who examine parts forged to more
exact specifications and operate more complicated
testing equipment may be required to have some
technical background in blueprint reading and
mathematics and may be given several months of
on-the-job training.
Employers usually require no more than a
grammar school education for helpers and heat­
ers, but high school graduates are preferred.
Young men interested in preparing themselves
for the more skilled forge shop jobs and for



supervisory positions should complete high school
and include mathematics, drafting, and shopwork in their studies.
Because much forge shop work involves lifting
and moving heavy forgings and dies, workers
must be strong. However, cranes are used for
moving very large objects. Forge shop workers
must have the stamina to work under very hot
and noisy conditions for an entire working day.

Employment Outlook
A few thousand young people each year will
have opportunities to get jobs in forge shops
during the remainder of the 1960’s and in the
longer run. Most of these openings will arise
because workers who retire, die, or transfer to
other fields o f work will have to be replaced.
Other opportunities will result from a slight
growth expected in the total number of forge
shop workers.
A slight rise in forge shop employment is
anticipated over the next 10 or 15 years because
industries which use forgings in their final prod­
ucts— particularly the aircraft, missile, and space­
craft, industrial machinery, and automobile
industries— are expected to expand. Growth in
forge shop employment may be limited, however,
by competition from new materials and metals
which are not forged, by the use of metal castings
to replace some forged parts, and by the wider
use of more modern equipment.
E a rn in g s a n d W o rk in g C o n d itio n s

Average earnings of production workers are
higher in forge shops than in manufacturing as
a whole. During 1962, production workers in
iron and steel forging plants earned an average
of $126.48 a week or $3.10 an hour, compared with
$96.56 a week or $2.39 an Hour in all manufac­
turing industries.
In many forge shops, earnings of hammer
and press smiths are determined by the number
of forgings they produce. Other members of
hammer or press crews are paid a percentage of
the operators5 pay.
The following tabulation, based on examina­
tion o f several labor-management agreements in

commercial forge shops, provides a rough indi­
cation of approximate straight-time hourly wage
rates in late 1962 for selected forge shop occupa­
tions. Wage ranges shown for the occupations
reflect differences in experience and skill of
workers in the occupation and also differentials
in wages paid in various plants and sections of
the country.
Die sinkers______________________________
Press smiths and upsettermen_________
Hammer operators_______ _____________
Cranemen__________ ____________________
Trimmers and finishers_________________
Sandblasters and shotblasters_________

$4. 28-$4. £8
2. 6 7 - 2. 97
2 .0 2 - 2 . 9 7
2. 0 7 - 3. 17
2. 2 9 - 2. 86
2. 3 4 - 2. 39
2. 3 3 - 2. 77
2. 0 9 - 2. 77

Most forge shop workers are union members.
Many are members of the International Brother­
hood of Boilermakers, Iron Shipbuilders, Black­
smiths, Forgers and Helpers. Others are mem­
bers of the United Steelworkers of America; the
International Union, United Automobile, Aero­
space and Agricultural Implement Workers of
America; the International Association of
Machinists; and the International Die Sinkers’
Conference (In d .). Many forge shops have unionmanagement contracts which provide insurance
and pension plans, paid vacations, and other
nonwage benefits.
Although forge shops typically are hot and
noisy, working conditions have been improved in
recent years. Many firms have installed large
ventilating fans and have attempted to reduce
machine concussion and vibration.
The injury-frequency rate in forge shops is
higher than in many other types of factory work.
Employers and unions have contributed to the
reduction of accidents in forge shops by pro­
moting greater use of protective goggles, metaltoe shoes, metal helmets, and machine safety

Where To Go for More Information
Drop Forging Association,
55 Public Square, Cleveland, Ohio, 44113.
International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron
Shipbuilders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers,
8th at State Ave., Kansas City, Kans., 66101.

About 2.4 million employees were engaged in
moving passengers and goods over highways and
city streets in 1962. (Chart 30 shows percent of
employment by individual occupation.) They
transported thousands of products used in homes,
schools, and factories, and also transported mil­
lions of people every day. In 1962, over 12 mil­
lion private and commercial (for-hire) motor
trucks were registered, including over 11 million
privately owned trucks operated by stores, dairies,
farmers, or industrial firms. O f the 1 million
trucks available for hire, about one-third handled
intercity freight and the remainder did local
hauling. Federal, State, and local governments
owned about 600,000 trucks. O f the 280,000 buses
registered in 1962, more than 200,000 were schoolbuses and 80,000 were commercial vehicles. O f the
latter, about 50,000 w^ere used for local transit
work, 26,500 for intercity passenger traffic, and
the remainder for sightseeing, charter, and other
Some drivers, like the over-the-road truckdrivers, the intercity busdriver, the local busdriver, and the taxicab driver, spend practically
all of their working time driving. Others, like the
local truckdriver and delivery man, spend con­
siderable time in loading and unloading goods,
making pickups and deliveries, and collecting
money. Still others, like the routeman, spend a
good deal of their time selling. This chapter deals
only with employment opportunities for those
whose principal occupation is driving intercity
and local trucks and buses and taxis. It does not
cover schoolbus drivers, chauffeurs, part-time taxi
drivers, or employees whose driving is incidental
to their regular duties.
Many driving jobs require a high degree of
responsibility. Drivers, for the most part, oper­
ate large and expensive equipment which they
must drive carefully, obeying safety regulations
and traffic laws, to deliver their passengers and

freight safely. These men are on their own,
away from direct supervision.
During the remainder of the 1960’s and in the
longer run, employment of local and over-the-road
truckdrivers is expected to expand as a result of
increases in the freight moved by motor carrier.
Employment in other driving jobs is not expected
to change much in the years ahead. Normal turn­
over in this large occupational field will also pro­
vide many job opportunities each year.
Driving jobs offer excellent opportunities for
young men who are not planning to attend
college and who have no interest in or aptitude
for craft or technical occupations. The pay of
most drivers is relatively high and working condi­
tions are fairly good. Many young men will also
enjoy the freedom from close supervision and the
frequent contacts with people, which are char­
acteristic of most of these jobs.
C H A R T 30

P e r c e n t of e m p l o y m e n t , 1962*







1 ------------- 1---------------1-------------- 1---------------1-------------- 1---------------1

Lo cal truckdrivers

O v e r-th e -ro a d truckd ri ve rs

R o ut e m en

T a x i c a b d r iv e r s

L o c a l t r a n s i t bu s
d r iv e r s

In te rci ty b u s d r i v e r s



Over-the-Road Truckdrivers
(D .O.T. 7-36.240)

Nature of Work
The men at the wheel of the big trucks on high­
ways and turnpikes are generally the top profes­
sional drivers. They drive the largest and most
expensive equipment and receive the highest
wages of all drivers. They are on their own
practically all the time and have a great deal of
responsibility. The work requires a good deal of
initiative, as they must transport goods and
materials of great value which must be delivered
safely and on time.
Most over-the-road drivers operate gasoline or
diesel powered tractor-trailers. (The tractor is
the short-chassis vehicle that draws the trailer
which contains the freight.) They deliver goods
usually over long distances— frequently driving
at night.
Unlike the local truckdriver who spends con­
siderable time in loading and unloading, the overthe-road driver (sometimes called intercity, linehaul, or long-haul driver) spends practically all
of his working time in driving. He may some­
times handle the freight. Some drivers, for
example, may have to unload the goods they
deliver to stores at night when receiving crews
are not available. Drivers of long-distance mov­
ing vans generally have to load or unload their
cargoes, with the assistance of local helpers.
The truckdriver must back up big trailers to
loading platforms; this requires the ability to
maneuver the trailers while driving in reverse.
He must also be able to judge distances accurately
while driving around corners or through narrow
Because the over-the-road truckdriver spends
most of his time driving, safe driving practices
and courtesy are o f the utmost importance. Every
one has seen the emergency warning signals set
out by a driver near his disabled truck on the edge
of the highway. Many motorists have noted the
courtesy o f truckdrivers who pull off to the
shoulder of the road at the top of a hill to allow
the accumulated traffic to pass.
Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) regu­
lations require drivers to inspect their trucks
before and after trips and make out reports on

the condition of the vehicle at the end of the run.
Drivers are also required to keep a daily log of
their activities. I f a driver has an accident, he
must make out a detailed report. ICC also pre­
scribes special safety precautions concerning
packing and loading flammable, explosive, or
otherwise hazardous materials, and over-the-road
driving of trucks containing these materials.

Where Employed
About 600,000 over-the-road drivers were em­
ployed throughout the United States in 1962.
Many work out of large cities such as Chicago
and Los Angeles; however, some large companies
have their operating headquarters in fairly small
Over-the-road drivers are employed by private
and for-hire carriers. Private carriers are com­
panies, such as chain food stores or manufac­
turing plants, which use their own or leased trucks
to transport their own goods. For-hire carriers are
either common carriers (trucking companies
serving the general public) or contract carriers
(trucking firms hauling goods under contract for
certain companies). While the drivers of the big
tractor-trailers on long intercity runs are more
often employed by common carriers, an increasing
number of drivers in recent years have been work­
ing for private or exempt (from ICC regulation)
carriers, or for specialized carriers handling large
pieces of machinery, explosives, or missiles. On
shorter hauls, many drivers are employed by con­
tract and common carriers to make deliveries of
machinery, food, petroleum products, household
appliances, and other items, from plants to ware­
houses and from warehouses to large volume

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Regulations of the Interstate Commerce Com­
mission establish minimum qualifications for
over-the-road drivers. The driver must be at
least 21 years of age, able-bodied, with good
hearing and vision of at least 20/40 with or
without glasses. He must be able to read and

speak English, have at least 1 year’s driving
experience (which may include driving private
automobiles), and a good driving record. Most
States require truckdrivers to have a chauffeur’s
license, which is a commercial driving permit
obtained from State Motor Vehicle Departments.
These minimum standards apply to all over-theroad drivers. Most fleet operators, however, have
higher standards. Many firms will not hire
drivers under age 25; some specify height and
weight limitations. Many require at least a grade
school education; others require 2 years of high
school. Some companies employ only applicants
who have had several years o f experience in
handling vehicles of the type they would be
required to drive.
The standards for over-the-road drivers are
generally higher than those for local truckdrivers. Furthermore, these standards are more
strictly adhered to than those for local drivers,
whose standards may be lowered when there are
not enough applicants for jobs.
The tractor-trailer often seen on highways
probably costs as much as $25,000 and the load
inside may be worth more than $100,000. The
owners o f this equipment, therefore, employ
drivers with a know-how based on years of driving
experience, who also can accept great responsi­
Many training authorities and employers rec­
ommend that young men interested in becoming
professional drivers should take the driver-train­
ing courses offered by many high schools. I f such
a course is not available, the professional driving
schools which operate in most large cities are
recommended. A high school course in automo­
tive mechanics is also very helpful.
Long-haul driving is considered a senior driv­
ing job and most such drivers have had previous
experience in local trucking. Usually they enter
this occupation by first driving a small, light
truck; then, after gaining experience, they move
to the larger and more complicated trucks. A
young man may also begin as a helper to a local
truckdriver, assisting him in loading and unload­
ing the truck, and occasionally doing some relief
Another type of experience considered very
desirable by employers is a combination of inter­
city bus and local truckdriving. This experience


may be gained by working for an intercity bus
company during the spring and summer months
and for a local trucking company during the
fall and winter months. Thus, the driver gets the
road experience with the bus company and learns
how to handle a tractor-trailer with the local
trucking company.
All employers are interested in obtaining good,
safe, reliable drivers, but the methods of selection
and training vary. Some companies have formal
tests and training programs. Others hire on the
basis of personal interviews, and have training
programs consisting of a “ break-in” period during
which the new employee observes and works with
an experienced driver.
Applicants for jobs as over-the-road drivers
are required to pass a physical examination
which is usually paid for by the employer.
Many firms also give written traffic and driving
knowledge tests. Some employers give tests to
measure such factors as sharpness and field of
vision, reaction time, ability to judge speed, and
emotional stability. The last step in the selection
of drivers is the road test. The applicant is
expected to demonstrate his ability to handle,
under a variety of driving conditions, a vehicle
of the type and size he will operate in regular
A new driver may be given a brief indoctrination
course covering company policy and the prepara­
tion of various forms he will use on the job. He
will then make one or more training trips with an
instructor or an experienced driver.
Drivers employed by common carriers fre­
quently start on the “ extra board,” bidding for
regular runs on the basis of seniority as vacancies
occur. (The extra board is a list of men, assigned
in rotation, who substitute for regular drivers or
who make extra trips when necessary.) Drivers
for private carriers are more likely to begin with
assigned regular routes.
Promotional opportunities in this occupation
are limited. A few drivers may advance to jobs as
safety supervisors, driver supervisors, and dis­
patchers. Most drivers, however, can only expect
runs which will give them higher earnings.

Employment Outlook
A substantial increase in the employment of
over-the-road truckdrivers is anticipated during


the remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer run,
as a result of increased industrial activity, con­
tinued decentralization of industry, and the move­
ment o f population to the suburbs. A large num­
ber of job openings will also be created by trans­
fers from this field of work. Many long-haul
truckdrivers return to local truckdriving jobs.
Approximately 8,000 to 10,000 additional job
openings are expected each year as a result of
deaths, and retirements, and the number may be
increased somewhat by the trend toward earlier
Freight carried by over-the-road trucks has
been increasing as a result of the general economic
growth of the Nation. Trucks have been hauling
an increasing share of the total freight, and this
trend is expected to continue. Many factories,
warehouses, and stores are being located at great
distances from each other in suburban or semirural areas where rail facilities are nonexistent or
extremely limited. The intercity highway build­
ing program has aided the trucking industry in
this regard. Furthermore, the growth of chain
stores, and the trend to small inventories and
decentralization of factories require daily coordi­
nation of shipping which can best be handled
by trucks.
Improvements in trailer design have also con­
tributed to more over-the-road trucking, by mak­
ing it possible to ship certain kinds of freight for
longer distances. For example, some refrigerated
trailers now provide temperatures down to 20
degrees below zero, and new livestock trailers
feature controlled ventilation, nonskid floors, and
interior walls designed to avoid bruising and
other injury to the animals.
Demand for trucking services may increase as
a result of new trucking methods which promise
reduced handling and shipping time and, there­
fore, reduced freight costs for small loads. One
example is the introduction of “ double bottoms”
—two relatively small trailers hitched in tandem
to a tractor. These trailers can be unhitched at
the truck terminal, and promptly delivered to the
customers, thus eliminating the need to unpack a
large trailer, separate its contents, and repack on
local delivery trucks. On a smaller scale is the prac­
tice of packing all freight destined for a single cus­
tomer or area into large containers or cargo cages
which can be handled at the truck terminal more

conveniently and quickly than individual pack­
Some recent freight transportation innovations
will limit somewhat the anticipated increase in
trucking business and driver employment. For
example, the movement of highway trailers on
railroad flat cars (“ piggyback” ), which saves the
cost of driver, fuel, and tractor, appears to have
prospects for considerable expansion, although
it accounts for only a small share of total freight
shipped at present. Employment expansion may
also be limited by the increasing use of trailer­
carrying ships ( “ fishyback” ), recently introduced
for transporting loaded trailers for long distances,
and the use of large containers on ships and cargo
aircraft ( “birdyback” ) . To compensate for job dis­
placement that may arise from such innova­
tions, there is a growing practice under labormanagement agreements to provide for retirement
at an earlier age.
Further limitations on employment expansion
among over-the-road drivers include changes in
State laws. State limitations on truck weight, size,
and speed are becoming less restrictive as a result
of the construction of better highways and im­
proved travel arteries inside the cities. The move­
ment of bigger loads at higher average speeds
could result in a need for fewer drivers than would
otherwise be required to move the greatly increased
over-the-road tonnage anticipated in the years
In the long run, however, the total volume of
goods shipped and the convenience and mobility
of motor transport is expected to be great enough
to insure continued growth of driver employment
in trucking.
The over-the-road driver has a better chance
of remaining employed during business recessions
than workers in many other occupations.
Although the total tonnage moved may tempo­
rarily decline, over-the-road trucking is less
affected than other means o f transportation. It
gets a larger share of any shrinking transporta­
tion business because manufacturers and mer­
chants who are unable to buy merchandise in
railroad carload lots can reduce inventories and
still maintain their diversified stock by small
daily shipments by truck. Small lots are still
handled primarily by trucks.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Most over-the-road drivers earned at least $125
to $150 a week in 1962 and the majority made
far more. Drivers employed by class I common
carriers of general freight (carriers with gross
operating revenues of $1 million or more a year)
had annual average earnings in excess of $8,300
in 1961, the most recent year for which such data
are available. Better, experienced over-the-road
drivers can earn $12,000 a year or more. The rates
paid to over-the-road drivers are fairly uniform
because this is a highly unionized field and unionemployer contracts are generally master agree­
ments covering all employers within a region—
an area including a number of States. Further­
more, regional contracts tend to be quite uniform
because drivers working under different contracts
often travel the same routes. The earnings of an
individual driver are affected by such factors as
mileage driven, number of hours worked, type of
equipment driven or the weight of the loads
carried, type of “ run” (whether or not pickup or
delivery enroute is required), and the nature of
the cargo carried, with premium rates paid for
transporting flammable or otherwise hazardous
Drivers on the longer runs are generally paid
on a mileage basis for actual driving time. For
all other time during which the driver is required
to be on duty, he is paid at an hourly rate. This
includes waiting time, delay time owing to break­
down of equipment or impassable highways, lay­
over time (time spent at a terminal away from
home beginning at some designated hour after his
run ends), and time spent in making pickups or
deliveries enroute. Regular drivers are usually
assured minimum pay for a certain number of
hours—generally 8 hours a day.
Some private carriers pay their drivers on the
same basis as their other employees— a monthly,
weekly, or daily wage. Generally, such a wage
is for a specified number of hours and if the
driver works beyond that he receives extra pay.
In recent years, more than 100,000 motortrucks
—a third of all used in intercity freight hauling
— were operated by carriers subject to the Inter­
state Commerce Commission regulations govern­
ing hours of work and other matters. ICC regu­
lations limit the hours of work of over-the-road
drivers in order to be certain the driver has a


reasonable amount of rest. For example, no
driver may be on duty for more than 60 hours
in any 7-day period, but for carriers operating
every day of the week, the driver may remain
on duty for a maximum of 70 hours in any period
of 8 consecutive days. The regulations also pro­
vide that no driver may drive more than 10 hours
without first having an off-duty period of at least
8 hours. For drivers who drive less than 10 hours,
but perform other work for the motor carrier
in a garage, warehouse, or other place, the regu­
lations prohibit resumption of driving after any
combination of driving time and other on-duty
work which totals 15 hours, unless the driver has
first had at least 8 hours off duty. Many drivers,
particularly on the very long runs, work fairly
close to the maximum permitted. A workweek
of at least 50 hours is very common.
Most drivers receive pay for 6 or more national,
State, and local holidays. They also have paid
vacations, usually from 1 to 4 weeks, depending
upon their length of service. Health, insurance,
and pension plans, almost invariably paid for by
the employers, are very common.
Over-the-road truckdrivers are often required
to spend time away from home—particularly
when they drive long runs. The driver often
starts out in the evening and arrives at the
terminal in the other city the following morning.
There, the company provides lodging for him
either in ji company dormitory or a hotel. In the
evening, he starts on his return trip and arrives at
the home terminal the following morning. He may
make two or three such round trips a week. I f
the trips are part of a relay operation, another
driver is working a similar schedule starting from
the other end of the run.
Some companies use two-man sleeper teams on
their very long runs. One drives while the other
sleeps in a bunk behind the cab. The vehicle
goes straight through to the end of the run where
there may be a layover before the return trip.
Two periods of 4 hours of resting or sleeping in
a berth in the truck meet the ICC requirement
of 8 hours off duty following 10 hours of driving.
This means that the drivers on a run may remain
with the truck in some cases for over 100 hours.
Although earnings on sleeper runs are the high­
est in this field of work, few drivers stay with
this type of run very long. The work is very



tiring and requires being away from family and
friends for days and even weeks. However,
many drivers go back to sleeper runs after they
have had a rest or have done some relay driving
for a while. The earnings of drivers of long­
distance moving vans are also quite high, but
their hours are long and the work is strenuous.
They drive more miles than the average overthe-road driver and also work more hours in
loading and unloading goods.
Largely because of intensive safety programs
and drivers’ skill, the accident rate in over-theroad trucking is low. Injuries occur less
frequently than in other forms of motor
Driving the big over-the-road trucks does not
involve the physical effort most people associate
with truckdriving. The physical strain of such

driving has been reduced by more comfortable
seating, better highways, and more stringent
safety regulations. Sitting in one place for hours
at a time, however, is tiring and the nervous
strain of sustained driving at night is also
Most over-the-road drivers are members of the
International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauf­
feurs, Warehousemen and Helpers of America
(Ind.). Some drivers of private carriers belong
to unions representing the plant employees of the
companies for which they work.

Where To Go for More Information
Information on career opportunities may be
obtained from:
American Trucking Associations,
1616 P St. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20036.

Local Truckdrivers
(D .O.T. 7-36.200 through .299)

Nature of Work
Much o f the food, clothing, and other products
required by consumers are transported by trucks.
The men who move these goods from terminals,
warehouses, and factories to wholesalers, retailers,
and consumers in the local area must be skilled
drivers to avoid accidents on congested city
streets. They must also be able to maneuver big
trucks or tractor-trailers into tight parking spaces,
through narrow alleys, and up to loading
platforms. (Telephone linemen, repairmen, and
many thousands o f other workers for whom
driving is incidental to their primary duties are
not included in this discussion.)
When the local truckdriver reports to work at
the terminal or warehouse, he receives his assign­
ment to make deliveries, pickups, or both. He
also receives the delivery forms he will need and
checks the condition of his truck. His truck is
generally loaded for him by platform men. I f
he does the loading himself, however, and must
make many deliveries, he arranges the items in
proper sequence so that there will be a minimum
of handling. At the customer’s place of business,
the driver generally loads and unloads the mer­
chandise himself. I f he has heavy loads such as

machinery or if he has many deliveries to make
during the day, he may have a helper to assist
him. The driver of a moving van usually has a
crew of helpers to assist him in loading and
unloading household or office furniture.
At the delivery points, the driver gets custom­
ers to sign receipts and freight bills, and he
sometimes collects money for freight, c.o.d.
deliveries, and other charges. At the end of his
day he turns in all receipts and cash collected
and records his time and the deliveries made. He
also reports whatever maintenance or repair is
needed before his truck is used again.
Some of these workers drive special types of
trucks, such as dump or oil trucks, which require
the operation of mechanical levers, pedals, or
other equipment. For example, if they drive
dump trucks, they operate levers inside the cab
or at the side of the truck in order to set the
dumping mechanism in motion. I f they haul
heavy machinery, they operate mechanical hoists
to load and unload the machines.

Where Employed
An estimated 1.2 million workers were
employed as local truckdrivers in 1962, mostly in

and around large metropolitan areas. They work
in all localities, however, including the smallest
A large majority of local drivers work for
businesses which deliver their own products and
goods—such as department stores, meatpackers
and other food processors, wholesale distributors,
petroleum companies, grocery chains, and con­
struction companies. Many others are employed
by local for-hire operators—trucking companies
which serve the general public or specific com­
panies under contract. Some are employed by
the Federal Government including, in particular,
the Post Office Department, and by States and
municipalities. A large number are in business
for themselves.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Qualifications for local truckdrivers vary con­
siderably, depending upon factors such as the
type o f equipment to be operated and the nature
of the employer’s business. Generally, appli­
cants must be 21 years of age or older. Some
employers prefer applicants who have completed
grade school or, better, 2 to 4 years of high
school. The applicant must be physically able
to lift heavy objects and otherwise be in good
health. He should have good hearing and good
vision (with or without glasses). Since a driver
often deals directly with the public, employers
look for men who are tactful and courteous.
An applicant must have or get a chauffeur’s
license, which is a commercial driving permit.
Familiarity with traffic laws and safety measures
is necessary, and some previous experience in
driving a truck is helpful. A young man may
obtain such experience by working as a truckdriver’s helper. Employers also give consider­
ation to driving experience gained in the Armed
Since he will be responsible for costly vehicles
and cargo, a truckdriver must be cautious, alert,
and able to judge distances and to coordinate his
reactions to avoid accidents in congested traffic.
To demonstrate these qualifications, an appli­
cant’s driving ability will be tested, and he may
have to pass a written examination as well as a
general physical examination. Employers gen­


erally will check applicants for traffic and
police records.
Training given to new drivers is often informal
and may consist only of riding with and observ­
ing an experienced driver on the job. Additional
training may be given if they are to drive a spe­
cial type of truck. Some companies give a brief
indoctrination course which lasts 1 or 2 days and
covers general duties, the efficient operation and
loading of a truck, company policies, and the
preparation of delivery forms and company
Although most new employees are immediately
assigned to regular driving jobs, some start as
extra drivers, taking over the routes of regular
drivers who are ill or on vacation, or making
extra trips when necessary. They receive regular
assignments when openings occur.
Local truckdrivers may get jobs as dispatchers
or advance to jobs as terminal managers, or super­
visors, or to traffic work, i.e., planning delivery
schedules. However, these jobs are relatively
few. For the most part, advancement for a local
truckdriver consists of earning higher hourly
wages by driving heavy or special type truck
loads instead of light trucks, or by transferring
to over-the-road truckdriving.
An experienced truckdriver who has some busi­
ness ability and ambition can start his own truck­
ing company when he has sufficient capital to
purchase expensive trucking equipment and meet
other business expenses. Truckers who own one
or two vehicles continue to account for a sizable
proportion of local for-hire trucking business.

Employment Outlook
A moderate rise in the employment of local
truckdrivers is anticipated during the remainder
of the 1960’s and in the longer run, because of the
expected increase in volume o f freight. Many new
workers will also be needed to replace drivers
who transfer to other fields of work, retire, or die.
Retirements and deaths alone will result in about
15,000 job openings each year for local truckdrivers.
The rise in total business activity anticipated
in the years ahead will increase the volume of
freight. Since trucks carry virtually all freight


for local distribution and do not compete for
hauling with other types of carriers, this antici­
pated increase in total intercity and local freight
volume will expand local trucking business and,
thereby, truckdriver employment. The continued
growth of suburban areas will contribute to the
employment of more drivers. The increasing
volume of “ piggybacking” will also tend to expand
employment opportunities for local truckdrivers.
Some recent developments may offset somewhat
the growth in the number o f local truckdrivers
that would otherwise occur with an increase in
freight volume. For example, the trend toward
larger deliveries to relatively fewer retail outlets
is the result o f the growth of chain stores and
shopping centers. (On the other hand, as sub­
urban areas expand, local truckers tend to service
a wider area, increasing the travel time per truck.
Thus, more trucks may be needed to handle the
growing volume of goods.) The introduction of
new equipment may also affect the number of
drivers who will be needed to deliver large and
heavy loads. For example, the greater use of
trucks equipped with power tailgates that can be
raised or lowered to platform or ground level will
reduce the time needed for deliveries. Innovation
in local trucking will continue to be limited, how­
ever, by narrow city streets and heavy traffic,
although urban renewal and urban highway
building projects may improve driving conditions.

Earnings and Working Conditions
On the average, hourly union wage scales were
$2.89 for local truckdrivers and $2.55 for driverhelpers on July 1, 1962, according to a survey in
53 large cities. Average hourly pay scales for
drivers ranged from $2.34 in Washington, D.C.,
to $3.35 in the San Francisco-Oakland area.
However, wage scales vary, even in the same city,
depending on the type of trucking service (such
as general freight drayage or local moving and
storage), the type of product hauled, and the size
and type of truck operated.

As a rule, local truckdrivers are paid by the
hour and receive extra pay for working overtime,
usually after 40 hours. Some drivers are guar­
anteed minimum daily or weekly earnings. Local
truckdrivers frequently work 48 hours or more a
week and thus often drive 6 days a week.
Although daytime work is customary, nightwork
or early morning work is sometimes necessary,
particularly for drivers handling foodstuffs for
chain grocery stores, produce markets, or bakeries.
Most drivers deliver over regular routes or runs,
although some may be assigned different routes
when they report to work each day.
Local truckdrivers generally have paid vaca­
tions of 1 or 2 weeks after a year of service and
up to 4 weeks after 18 or even fewer years. In
addition, they usually receive pay for 6 or more
national, State, and local holidays.
A majority of local truckdrivers belong to
unions. Most of them belong to the Interna­
tional Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs,
Warehousemen and Helpers of America (Ind.).
Some local truckdrivers employed by private
carriers are members of unions representing the
plant workers of their employers.
Practically all unionized local truckdrivers and
their helpers are covered by life and health
insurance and pension plans which are almost
always paid for by the employer. When uniforms
are required, the cost is usually paid for entirely
or partly by the employer, who may also provide
for their upkeep.
Local truckdrivers, because they drive in heavy
traffic through narrow city streets, are subject
to nervous strain. The actual operation of a
truck has become less physically demanding
because of improvements such as power steering,
and more comfortable seating. However, when
local drivers make many deliveries during a day,
their work can be exhausting. Some drivers may
develop physical disorders, such as back strain
and hernia. Local truckdrivers do, however, have
certain work advantages. For the most part, they
have steady employment. Unlike over-the-road
drivers, they usually work a regular daytime
schedule and return home in the evenings.



(D.O .T. 7-35.100)

Nature of Work
Routemen are as much salesmen as they are
drivers. In fact, they are sometimes known as
driver-salesmen or route-salesmen. They must,
through their selling ability, increase sales to
existing customers and obtain new business by
canvassing potential customers within their ter­
ritories. Routemen drive panel or light trucks
over an assigned route, selling and delivering
goods, or providing services such as collecting
and delivering laundry and dry cleaning, to
retail establishments (wholesale routemen) or
directly to the public (retail routemen). Whole­
sale routemen usually drive heavier trucks. These
trucks are refrigerated when dairy products or
frozen foods are carried.
Before starting on his daily route, the routeman loads or supervises the loading of his truck.
The amount of merchandise in his truck is
generally checked by another employee. Some
routemen deliver merchandise previously ordered
and obtain orders for future delivery. Others
make immediate sales from the stock in the
truck. In either case, they must collect payments
and keep records o f their transactions. When
they check in at the plant after completing their
routes, they empty their truck and turn in their
collections to the cashier. The retail routemen
serving homes make from 5 to 10 times as many
stops as the wholesale routemen who serve stores
and other business establishments.
Routemen’s work varies according to the in­
dustry in which they are employed, the type of
routes they have (retail or wholesale), and the
company employing them. Some specific examples,
however, may indicate in a general way what most
routemen do. A typical day for a drycleaning
routeman begins when he picks up cleaned gar­
ments at the processing plant and loads his truck,
which is equipped with carrying racks. He delivers
the garments to homes or business establishments
and picks up soiled clothing. He marks the articles
picked up so they may be identified at the
plant. Sometimes, he makes notes of the types
of stains or of special processes to be used such
as waterproofing. Each cleaned garment has an

Routeman delivers dairy products

itemized bill attached, so that he can collect the
amount of money due.
Although all routemen must be able to get
along well with people, it is particularly impor­
tant for the drycleaning and laundry routeman.
His reaction to complaints and requests for spe­
cial services may be the difference between
increasing business or losing customers. Periodi­
cally, he calls at homes and business establish­
ments along his route which are not using his
company’s services to try to get their trade.
A good example of a wholesale routeman is the
man who delivers bakery products to grocery
stores. His truck is loaded the night before or


early in the morning, and he checks to see
whether he has the proper variety and quantity
of products before starting on his route. He
stops at from 10 to 50 grocery stores. A t each
stop he brings the orders of bread and other
bakery products into the store, and arranges them
on the display racks, in the best possible display
space he can secure. Together with the store
owner or manager, he checks the merchandise he
has delivered. He also credits the store for the
value of the stale bread and cakes left over from
the previous delivery.
The routeman prepares a list of products he
plans to deliver the next day. This represents
his estimate of the amount of bakery products
that will be sold by the grocery stores. From
time to time, he calls on grocers along his route,
who are not his customers, and tries to get orders
from them.

Where Employed
Nearly 200,000 routemen worked for a wide
variety of businesses in 1962. Since most of
them w^ere employed by companies which dis­
tributed food products or provided personal
services, they worked in small towns as well as
in large cities throughout the country. The great­
est concentration of employment, however, was in
the large cities in dairies (about 80,000), baker­
ies (about 60,000), and in drycleaning plants
(about 40,000).
Some were engaged in wholesale distribution
of goods and services to stores and other busi­
ness establishments, although the majority dis­
tributed goods and services to homeowners and
apartment dwellers. Many companies employed
both wholesale and retail routemen.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
In addition to being a good driver, a routeman must have sales ability. To induce people
to buy, he must have a thorough knowledge of
the product or service he is selling and a persua­
sive personality. Other important sales quali­
fications are a pleasant voice, ability to speak
well, and a neat appearance. He also needs to
have self-confidence, initiative, and tact.
He must be able to work without direct super­
vision, do simple arithmetic, and write legibly.

In most States, a routeman is required to have
a chauffeur’s license, which is a commercial
driving permit. Information regarding this license
can be obtained from State Motor Vehicle
Most employers require their routemen to be
high school graduates, preferably 25 years of
age or older. Many large companies give appli­
cants aptitude and other psychological tests to
determine whether they will make good salesmen
and safe drivers. Those who handle a great deal
of money may be required by employers to be
High school courses in salesmanship, public
speaking, driver-training, bookkeeping and busi­
ness arithmetic, and school-work programs in
retail and wholesale merchandising are helpful
to a person. interested in entering this occupa­
tion. Immediately following high school, valu­
able experience may be obtained as a sales clerk
in a store or in some other type of selling job.
Another method of entering this occupation
is to get a job as a routeman heifer (D.O.T.
9-35.10). For this job, employers usually hire
boys 18 years of age or over who have a driver’s
license. The helper assists the routeman by load­
ing the truck at the beginning of the day, and
carries deliveries from the truck to the custom­
er’s home or store. He may collect payments or
obtain receipts and may sometimes drive to relieve
the routeman. Helpers are not likely to be used
in the dairy industry, however. Still another
way of becoming a routeman is to get a job (plant
or office) in a bakery, dairy, laundry, or dryclean­
ing establishment. After learning something
about the business, a young man may get a job
as a routeman when an opening occurs.
Most companies give their routemen on-thejob training which varies in length and thor­
oughness. Many large companies have classes in
salesmanship. Some companies assign newly
hired routemen for brief periods to jobs in the
different departments of the plant to familiarize
them with all the processing operations, so they
can answer customers’ questions intelligently and
be better salesmen. New employees are then
trained for a short time on routes working with
supervisors. The first week, the routemen usually
observe and assist the supervisors; later, they take

over the operation under the direction of the
Routemen may be promoted to route foreman
or sales supervisor, but these jobs are relatively
scarce. Advancement is usually limited to moving
from a retail to a wholesale route where earnings
are generally higher. However, some routemen
obtain better paying sales jobs as a result of the
experience gained in route selling.

Employment Outlook
The number of routemen is expected to increase
slightly during the remainder o f the 1960’s and in
the longer run, although job opportunities will
vary among different types of employers. There
will be a few thousand additional openings for
new workers each year as experienced workers
transfer to other fields of work, retire, or die.
The number of retail routemen declined in the
decade following World War II, particularly
among drivers handling milk and dairy products.
However, the decline appears to have run its
course, and some employment upturn is likely.
The convenience o f home delivery to suburban
families consuming large quantities of milk and
dairy products makes such service popular, despite
the growth of local shopping centers. For laundry
and drycleaning retail routemen, the outlook is
for an increase in employment, in line with popu­
lation growth, especially in areas with a large
concentration of apartment houses. The increas­
ing number of married women working outside
the home will also result in more laundry or
cleaning work being done commercially.
Employment of wholesale routemen probably
will remain at about present levels or rise slightly.
Although large supermarkets have been replacing
small neighborhood stores, more supermarkets are
being built in the suburban areas. To serve the
expanding population, the new supermarkets will
require substantially more dairy products, fresh,
canned, and frozen foods, and other products.
The number of routemen will not increase cor­
respondingly, however. There has been a growing
trend toward larger delivery trucks. Moreover,
in recent years, some manufacturers and whole­
sale food companies have replaced their routemen
with salesmen who cover assigned territories by


automobile and truckdrivers who make the
In the long run, population expansion and
shifts to the suburbs, and the growing tendency
for housewives to take outside employment, will
create a continuing need for the door-to-door
services of retail routemen. The demand for
wholesale routemen will increase because of
larger sales of traditional products and the intro­
duction of new items. New lines o f frozen foods,
for example, are often introduced and marketed
by wholesale routemen.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Most routemen are paid a salary plus a per­
centage of the sales or collections they make.
Earnings vary considerably according to the
product sold and also among routemen selling
the same product. To a considerable extent, the
earnings of routemen may be determined by
their selling ability and the amount of time they
spend in canvassing. Wholesale routemen gen­
erally earn more than retail routemen because,
although they receive a lower percentage of
sales, they handle much larger quantities of
Retail milkmen making home deliveries in large
eastern and midwestern cities earned from about
$115 to $130 a week in early 1963, usually based
on a minimum guarantee plus sales commissions.
The weekly earnings of milkmen on regular
wholesale routes in these same areas were some­
what higher, generally ranging from $150 to $200
a week, although some workers made consid­
erably more.
According to a recent survey of baking firms in
13 Eastern States, driver-salesmen for both
wholesale and home-service bakeries had mini­
mum weekly salaries ranging from $72.50 to $98.
They can increase their earnings by selling more
bakery products to their customers and by increas­
ing the number of customers on their routes.
The number o f hours worked by routemen
varies. Some work only about 30 hours a week;
others may work as much as 60 or more hours a
week. It depends, to some extent, on whether the
individual has a well-established route or whether
he is trying to build up a new one; whether he
has a retail or a wholesale route; and how



ambitious he is. For some, the hours o f work gen­
erally are limited by union-management contract.
In other cases, the contract specifies merely the
earliest hour that work may begin and the latest
quitting time. The hours may also vary accord­
ing to seasonal peaks and lows. During the spring
cleaning season, for example, drycleaning routemen may work about 60 hours a week; in the
winter, they may work less than 30 hours a week.
Many companies require routemen to wear
uniforms. Some employers pay for the uniforms
and for keeping them clean.
Most routemen receive paid vacations, gen­
erally ranging from 1 to 4 weeks, depending
upon length o f service, and 6 or more paid
holidays a year. Many employers provide hos­
pitalization and medical benefits; some have
pension plans.

The routeman is on his own to a great extent.
He does not work under strict supervision and,
within certain broad limits, may decide how fast
he will work and where and when he will have
his lunch or rest period. This freedom of action
and the daily meeting and dealing with people on
the route, appeal to many young men. On the
other hand, a retail routeman has to make deliv­
eries in bad weather, and do a great deal of
lifting, carrying, and walking up and down stairs.
He may also have to work unusual hours. For
example, retail routemen delivering milk gen­
erally work in the very early morning hours.
Many routemen, particularly those delivering
bakery and dairy products, are members o f the
International Brotherhood o f Teamsters, Chauf­
feurs, Warehousemen and Helpers of America.
(Ind.). Some belong to the unions which repre­
sent the plant workers o f their employers.

Intercity Busdrivers
(D.O .T. 5-36.010)

Nature of Work
The drivers of the big buses which travel
between cities are selected on the basis of their
driving skill, emotional stability, and courtesy.
A driver’s duties generally begin when he takes
charge o f the bus. Before beginning his scheduled
trip, he inspects the bus carefully at the terminal
or garage. He checks the fuel, oil, water, and
tires, and makes certain that the bus is carrying
safety equipment, such as fire extinguishers,
first-aid kits, flags, and flares. The driver also
picks up the tickets, change, report blanks, and
other items needed for his trip. He receives a
listing o f the express and mail to be carried.
Unless the driver is to take over an already
loaded bus on the highway from another driver,
he moves his empty bus from the terminal or
garage to the proper loading platform, where
he takes on his passengers. He collects fares—
tickets usually— from the passengers as they
board the bus, and announces the destination,
route, time o f arrival, and other information
concerning the trip. The driver also loads or su­
pervises the loading o f baggage and package ex­
press into the baggage compartment. He checks

the loading plan so that the baggage can be un­
loaded at the proper destination with minimum
effort.. He also collects cash fares from passengers
who board the bus between stations where tickets
are sold.
The driver operates the bus carefully at speeds
which will enable him to arrive at and leave
regular bus stops according to established time
schedules. On most runs, he also stops momen­
tarily at other designated points to discharge or

Driver welcomes passengers aboard intercity bus

pick up passengers, and load or unload baggage
and package express wherever necessary. He an­
nounces regular stops and rest or lunch stops.
Before continuing the trip he counts the passen­
gers to make certain all have reentered the bus.
The driver also regulates lighting, heating, and
airconditioning equipment for the passengers’
comfort. In an emergency, he is sometimes re­
quired to make minor road repairs such as chang­
ing tires, for which he generally receives extra
Upon arriving at his final destination, the
driver unloads or supervises the unloading of the
remaining baggage and turns in the lists of pack­
ages or mail carried. He prepares reports on mile­
age, time, and fares, as required by company
rules. He also keeps a log of hours as required
by the Interstate Commerce Commission. The
driver must make out a complete report if an
accident or unusual delay occurs.

Where Employed
Approximately 27,000 intercity busdrivers
were employed by about 1,500 bus companies in
1962. About 17,500 of these drivers worked for
the 155 large class I intercity companies—those
with annual revenues of over $200,000. Although
many bus drivers work out of the larger cities,
some are employed in smaller cities and towns.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
All intercity busdrivers are required to meet
minimum age, health, and experience qualifica­
tions established by the Interstate Commerce
Commission. The ICC minimum age requirement
is 21 years. The applicant must be able-bodied
and have good hearing and at least 20/40 eye­
sight with or without glasses. He must have at
least 1 year’s driving experience (through all
four seasons) with a good driving record, and
must be able to read and speak English.
Although many intercity bus companies use
these standards, other companies have higher re­
quirements. Most, of these companies prefer appli­
cants to be at least 23 years of age with a high
school education or its equivalent. Applicants
are often given comprehensive examinations to
determine their driving skill, intelligence, tem­
perament, and personality. Some large com­


panies do not accept applicants who wear
Young persons interested in becoming busdrivers should have good foot, hand, and eye
coordination, be able to judge distances accu­
rately, and react quickly. An even temperament
and emotional stability are other important
qualifications because busdrivers work under con­
siderable tension when they operate large vehicles
in heavy and swiftly moving traffic. Since they
represent their companies in dealing with pas­
sengers, busdrivers must also be courteous and
Although previous experience in the operation
of a truck or bus is not required, it is preferred
by some employers. In most States, the law
requires that a trainee for a busdriver’s job must
have or obtain a chauffeur’s license, which is a
commercial driving permit.
Most intercity bus companies conduct train­
ing programs for beginning drivers. These
programs, which usually last from 2 to 6 weeks,
but can extend to 3 months, include both class­
room and driving instruction. In the classroom,
the trainee is instructed in company and Inter­
state Commerce Commission rules; State and
municipal regulations; safe driving practices;
rates, schedules, and timetables; and how to deal
with the public. He is also taught how to keep
clerical records, check supplies, inspect the bus,
and make minor emergency repairs.
The trainee then rides with a regular driver
to observe correct driving practices and other
aspects of the job. He also makes trial runs,
without passengers, to demonstrate his driving
skill. After satisfactorily completing the train­
ing, which generally includes final driving and
written examinations, the new driver begins a
“ break-in” period. During this period, working
under strict supervision, he makes regularly
scheduled trips with passengers.
New workers start out on the “ extra board,”
which is a list of drivers on call who are given
temporary assignments. While on the extra
board, the new driver may substitute for a regu­
lar driver wr is ill or on vacation, drive a sec­
ond or overload section, make an extra trip if
necessary, or drive chartered buses. Extra driv­
ers may have to wait several years before they
have the necessary seniority to receive a regu­


lar assignment. In almost all companies, it is
necessary for a beginning employee to serve a
probationary period lasting, as a rule, from 30
to 90 days.
Opportunities for promotion are generally
somewhat limited, particularly in small com­
panies. An experienced driver may be promoted
to a job as dispatcher, supervisor, sales repre­
sentative, terminal manager, or regional man­
ager. (Virtually all people in these jobs were
once drivers.) For most drivers, advancement
consists of receiving better assignments with
higher earnings, as their seniority increases.

Employment Outlook
The upward trend in the employment of inter­
city busdrivers in recent years is expected to con­
tinue. The number of these drivers is expected
to rise moderately in the immediate future and
in the longer run as a result of further increase
in intercity bus travel. Several hundred addi­
tional openings will also be available each year
in this relatively small occupation as a result of
transfers to other fields of work, retirements, and
Population growth and higher consumer
incomes during the years ahead should result in
more travel generally, a portion of which is
expected to be by bus. Some other factors which
are expected to increase travel by bus are: More
new and improved highways, which will probably
cut scheduled running time; increasing numbers
of larger and more comfortable buses; and more
deluxe express buses offering hostess services, re­
freshments, and other conveniences. Bus traffic
will also be favorably affected by touring and
charter services and by bus delivery of package
express and first-class mail which have become
important sources of revenue in the past several
years. The further curtailment or elimination of
railroad passenger service in many areas is also
increasing intercity bus traffic.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Drivers (including extra men) employed by
class I intercity bus companies, averaged $6,733
in 1961. Many regular drivers employed by these
692-408 O— 63------ 31

companies earned considerably more than $7,000
a year.
The wages of intercity busdrivers are typically
computed on a mileage basis. Rates ranged from
about 7 to more than 12 cents a mile in 1962.
Most regular drivers are guaranteed specified
wages in terms of miles or hours per pay period.
For all work other than their regular assign­
ment or “ tour of duty,” they receive additional
pay, customarily at premium rates.
Extra drivers are usually paid by the hour
when they are on call but are not driving, and
are paid the regular mileage rate when actually
driving. Drivers usually start at a minimum rate
and receive increases at intervals of 6 months or
a year. The maximum rate is generally reached
at the end of 2 years. Extra men generally earn
slightly less than regular drivers but, if enough
work is available, they may earn as much or
more than regular drivers. Extra drivers receive
a weekly or biweekly guarantee either in mini­
mum hours, mileage, or earnings. Trainees are
usually paid a flat daily rate.
Most drivers who work for the large compa­
nies average between 32 and 36 hours work a week.
Work schedules may range from 6 to 10 hours a
day and from 3*4 to 6 days a week. For exam­
ple, a driver on the run between Washington,
D.C., and New York City may either make one 10hour round trip a day for 3 days a week, drive
part way and return each day for 6 days, or have
the run split in some other way.
Interstate Commerce Commission regulations
limit the hours of work of intercity busdrivers.
According to ICC regulations, intercity drivers
may drive no more than 10 consecutive hours,
after which they must have at least 8 hours off.
Drivers are also limited to 60 hours of “ on duty”
time in a 7-day period. “ On-duty” is the period
from the time the driver is required to report for
work until he is relieved. For those who drive
less than 10 hours but perform other work for
the bus company, the regulations prohibit
resumption of driving after any combination of
driving and other on-duty time which totals 15
hours, unless the driver has first had at least 8
hours off duty.
Most intercity busdrivers belong to the Amal­
gamated Association of Street, Electric Railway
and Motor Coach Employees of America. The


Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen, and the
International Brotherhood o f Teamsters, Chauf­
feurs, Warehousemen and Helpers o f America
(Ind.) have also organized intercity busdrivers in
a few areas.
Labor-management contracts covering many
intercity busdrivers provide for health and life
insurance paid for by the employer, while pen­
sion plans under such agreements are usually
financed jointly by the workers and their
Drivers are given vacations with pay ranging
from 1 to 4 weeks, depending on the company
for which they work and their length of service.
Many also receive 6 paid holidays. When away
from home terminals overnight, drivers employed
by some companies receive pay for food and lodg­
ing. Drivers must usually pay for their own
uniforms at the start of employment. However,
most companies provide free uniforms as a
bonus for safe driving during the previous
12-month period.

Driving an intercity bus is not usually physi­
cally burdensome, but is demanding and requires
steady nerves. The busdriver is given a great
deal o f independence in his job, and is solely
responsible for the safety o f the passengers and
bus. Many drivers enjoy working without direct
supervision and take pride in assuming these
responsibilities. Some drivers enjoy the oppor­
tunity to travel and to meet the public.
Among the less desirable aspects of this job
are weekend and holiday work and the neces­
sity o f being away from home for varying
periods. Also, extra drivers are on call at all
hours and may be required to work at any time
on very short notice. In addition, drivers with
little seniority may sometimes be laid off when
business declines.
W he re To G o fo r M ore Info rm ation

For information regarding job opportunities
for an intercity busdriver, a young man should
apply to intercity bus companies or the local office
of the State employment service.

Local Transit Busdrivers
(D.O .T. 5-36.010)

N atu re o f W o rk

Local busdrivers transport millions of Ameri­
cans to and from work, schools, and homes, every
day. These drivers follow definite time sched­
ules and routes over city and suburban streets in
order to get passengers to their destinations on
The local busdriver’s workday begins when he
reports to the terminal or garage where he is
assigned his bus. He receives his change, tokens,
transfers, passes, and any other items needed.
Before starting the run, the driver is usually
required to check the tires, brakes, and lights.
Some very small local bus companies may also
require him to check the water, oil, and fuel.
On most runs, the driver makes regular stops
every block or two, where he operates the con­
trols of the bus doors to enable passengers to
enter and leave the vehicle. As the passengers
board the bus, the driver collects cash fares,
tokens, tickets, or transfers, and also issues trans­
fers, sells tokens, and makes change. The local

Local busdriver collects fare

busdriver often answers questions concerning
schedules, routes, transfer points, and street
numbers, and is sometimes required to call out
the name of the street at each regular bus stop.
He also regulates heating, air conditioning, and
lighting equipment to keep the passengers com­


At the end of his day’s run, the busdriver
turns in a trip sheet which usually includes a
record of fares received, trips made, and any
delays in schedule. In case of accident or an
unusual delay, the driver must make out a com­
prehensive report on its nature and cause.

Where Employed
In 1962, about 70,000 busdrivers were employed
by the local transit bus industry. Approximately
one-fourth worked in cities where the transit
system was municipally owned, such as Boston,
Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Los Angeles, New
York, St. Louis, and San Francisco. In addi­
tion to those employed by the local transit bus in­
dustry, some local drivers work for charter and
sightseeing lines, government agencies, and for
companies which specialize in operating schoolbuses. (There are also 15,000 to 25,000 full-time
schoolbus drivers and perhaps as many as 150,000
more part-time drivers.) A few drivers are
employed by Federal, State, and local govern­
Although many drivers work in major metro­
politan areas such as New York, Chicago, and
Detroit, some are employed in almost every com­
munity in the Nation.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Applicants for busdriver positions should be
between the ages of 21 and 40, of average height
and weight, and have good eyesight—with or
without glasses. The applicant must be in good
health, with no physical disabilities, and must
be able to pass the written and physical exami­
nations given by most employers. He must be
able to judge distances accurately; have good
foot, hand, and eye coordination; and have quick
reflexes. Because the driver often works under
pressure and deals with many different person­
alities, an even temperament and emotional stabil­
ity are important. Although educational require­
ments are not high, many employers prefer appli­
cants with a high school education or its equiv­
A motor vehicle operator’s permit and, gen­
erally, 1 or 2 years o f driving experience on
some type of motor vehicle are basic require­
ments. Most States require busdrivers to have

a chauffeur’s license which permits the holder
to operate commercial motor vehicles. This
license may be obtained either during or imme­
diately after the driver’s training period. Some
employers prefer drivers who have had experi­
ence operating a truck or bus. Because the appli­
cants will be transporting passengers and an acci­
dent could seriously injure many people, good
driving records are essential. An applicant who
has had a serious traffic violation or accident
may be disqualified.
Most local transit companies conduct training
courses which may last several weeks and include
both classroom and driving instruction. In the
classroom, the trainee is taught company rules,
safety regulations, and safe driving practices.
He is taught how to keep records, and how to
deal tactfully and courteously with passengers.
The trainee makes several trips without pas­
sengers, under the direct supervision of an experi­
enced driver. After he becomes familiar with
the operation of the bus, the company’s routes,
and other details of his work, he makes, under
supervision, several trips over a regular run with
passengers. At the conclusion of his training,
the new driver is often required to pass a writ­
ten and final driving examination before he
goes out on a run.
After passing the examinations, he is placed
on the “ extra” list. While on this list, he takes
over the runs of regular drivers who are ill or on
vacation and also makes extra trips in the morn­
ing or evening rush hours. He also may drive
charter* and sightseeing runs, and other extra
runs such as special service buses for public meet­
ings and sporting events. In almost all com­
panies it is necessary for a beginning employee
to serve a probationary period—generally lasting
for 30 to 90 days. He remains on the extra lisit
until he has the necessary seniority to obtain a
regular run. It may take from several months
to several years before he is assigned a regular
Promotional opportunities in regular driving
jobs are generally limited. Experienced drivers
may advance to jobs as instructor, dispatcher,
road supervisor, and, sometimes, executive. Pro­
motion in municipally owned bus systems is
usually by examination. The opportunities for
advancement of most drivers are limited to as­

signments to more desirable runs. Only after ac­
quiring sufficient seniority do the drivers receive
these assignments.

Employment Outlook
There will be a small number of opportunities
for new workers to enter this occupation each
year during the remainder of the 1960’s and in
the long run, even though the long term decline
in employment of local busdrivers is expected to
continue. These openings will result from the
need to replace drivers who transfer to other fields
of work, retire, or die. Retirements and deaths
may account for more than 1,500 openings each
In recent years, there has been a considerable
decline in the volume of passenger traffic han­
dled by the local transit bus industry. The main
cause of this decline has been the rapid rise in the
number of private automobiles and their increas­
ing use in both city and suburban areas. Another
factor has been the rapid growth of suburbs,
most of which have a wide variety of stores,
theaters, restaurants, and other services. Because
most suburban shopping centers have good park­
ing facilities and are easily reached by auto­
mobile, many suburban residents have found it
unnecessary to use public transportation for shop­
ping or other activities. In addition, increasing
traffic congestion and parking problems in most
downtown sections have led to the decline of many
central business districts. This, in turn, has
resulted in some curtailment of downtown bus
service between rush hours.
As local transit bus traffic declined steadily
in recent years and bus schedules and routes
were curtailed or entirely eliminated, the em­
ployment of busdrivers also declined. The de­
cline in employment was limited, however,
partly because transit companies are not com­
pletely free to curtail or eliminate unprofitable
routes, since the companies are usually regu­
lated by State or municipal authorities.
Employment of local transit busdrivers is
expected to continue to decline during the years
ahead, but at a somewhat slower rate. The pop­
ulation shift to the suburbs will continue to be
responsible for a moderate drop in employment.
No sharp decline is expected because downtown
traffic congestion and parking problems will con­


tinue to limit the use of automobiles in downtown
areas. Factors which will slow the downward
trend in busdriver employment are the replace­
ment of streetcars by buses, and the increased
need for schoolbuses in the suburbs. An increase
in the number of municipally owned companies
might also favorably affect busdriver employ­
ment, since such companies, even more than
privately owned companies, may provide service
in the public interest on unprofitable routes.
To alleviate the increasingly acute downtown
traffic congestion and urban parking problems,
Federal legislation was introduced in early 1963
which would encourage further combining of all
types of local public transportation—subway,
motorbus, trolley, and railway—into one coordi­
nated and expanded system, involving reduced
fares on commuter railroads and suburban motorbus lines. Such programs have already been
started in some communities. However, it is too
early to determine the effect that these pro­
grams and legislative proposals will have on
employment of local transit busdrivers.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Local transit busdrivers are usually paid by
the hour, and earnings vary according to locality,
length of service, size of company or city, and
length and type of run. Nearly all companies
pay the maximum job rate after 12 months’ serv­
ice. According to a survey of minimum hourly
wage scales set by union contracts for busdrivers
in 53 large cities, the average hourly rate was
$2.54 on July 1, 1962. For more than half of the
busdrivers covered by the contracts, scales ranged
from $2.35 to $2.75 an hour. Hourly scales were
highest in the larger cities in the Great Lakes, Pa­
cific, New^ England, and Middle Atlantic regions.
Among the cities surveyed, the hourly pay scales
for experienced busdrivers ranged from $1.70 in
Knoxville, Tenn., to $2.77 in Boston, Mass. Wage
scales for beginning drivers were generally 5 to
15 cents an hour less.
Most busdrivers have a standard w-ork schedule
of 8 hours a day, 40 hours a week. For additional
work, drivers usually receive 1% times their
hourly rates. In many companies, drivers often
work in excess of their standard work schedule,
thereby increasing their weekly earnings. Drivers
on the extra list generally are guaranteed a mini­



mum number of hours of work or a minimum
weekly salary, but frequently earn more than the
guaranteed minimum.
The workweek for regular drivers usually con­
sists of any 5 consecutive days, with Saturdays
and Sundays being counted as regular workdays.
Most transit companies run some buses in the
evening and a few companies operate 24 hours
a day. Therefore, some drivers have to work at
night. Many have regular “ straight” runs which
are unbroken except for meal periods. Others
may work the “ swing” run, in which the operator
drives for several hours, is off for several hours,
and then drives again for several hours. I f the
total elapsed time between the beginning and
end of a split shift exceeds a stated number of
hours, the driver generally receives extra pay.
Nearly all local transit busdrivers are covered
by labor-management contracts which provide
for life and health insurance, and pension plans;
the major pension plans are financed jointly by
the workers and their employers, while many
life and health insurance plans are paid for solely
by the employer. Drivers also are given vaca­
tions with pay ranging from 1 to 5 weeks, depend­
ing on the length of service, and usually 6 or 7 or
more paid holidays a year.
Although driving a bus is not physically
exhausting, busdrivers are exposed to the nerv­
ous tension which arises from driving a large

vehicle on heavily congested streets and dealing
with many types of passengers. In addition to
driving a bus, they must collect fares, answer
questions, see that passengers are clear of the
doors, and request riders to move to the rear.
Among the more favorable aspects of this
job is steady year-round employment once a
driver receives a regular assignment. Busdrivers
are usually free of direct supervision—which
many drivers also find desirable. Drivers take
pride in being solely responsible for the safety
of the passengers and bus and in acting as the
bus company’s representative to the general
Most busdrivers are members of the Amal­
gamated Association of Street, Electric Railway
and Motor Coach Employes of America. Drivers
in New York City and several other large cities
belong to the Transport workers Union of
The International Brotherhood of
Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and Help­
ers of America (Ind.) has also organized some
local transit busdrivers.

Where To Go for More Information
For information on employment opportuni­
ties for a local busdriver, a young man should
apply to the local transit company in his area
or to the local office of the State employment

Taxi Drivers
(D .O.T. 7-36.040)

Nature of Work
In practically all communities, taxicabs are an
essential part of the regular transportation sys­
tem. Taxicab drivers, in addition to providing
transportation, also perform other services. For
example, they assist passengers in and out of the
cab, handle their luggage, and may also pick up
and deliver packages. In some communities, cabs
are used for transporting crippled children to and
from school. Cabdrivers occasionally provide
sightseeing tours for out-of-town visitors.
Drivers get their “ fares” or passengers in one
or more ways. The majority of taxicab fleets are

equipped with two-way radio systems over which
requests for taxicabs are transmitted to the
driver. These companies also have cab stands at
which drivers may wait for phone calls from
their central dispatching office which will direct
them to pick up passengers. Many drivers wait
in front of theaters, hotels, bus terminals, rail­
road stations, and other buildings which may
have large numbers of prospective passengers.
In small cities and in suburban areas, drivers
may work from a central location, such as a
terminal, to which they return after each trip.
Passengers may also be picked up while the driver
is returning to his stand or station. A good



T ra in in g , O th e r Q u a lifica tio n s, a n d A d v a n ce m e n t

Cabdriver picks up fare

driver keeps himself informed on what is happen­
ing in the city, where crowds will gather (for
example, at theaters, and baseball and football
games) and the times when the crowds will break.
Drivers are usually required to keep records,
such as the date, time, and place passengers were
picked up, and the destination, time o f arrival,
and amount of fare collected. I f the cabdriver
owns his own cab or if he rents a cab over an
extended period of time, he may periodically
clean the cab, as required by regulations in many
municipalities. In large cab companies, this job
is generally performed by cleaners employed by
the company.
W he re Em p lo ye d

Approximately 150,000 taxi drivers were
employed full time in 1962 in the taxicab indus­
try, which is made up o f both privately owned
cabs and fleets o f company-owned vehicles. In
addition, perhaps as many were employed part
Although taxicab drivers are employed in
every metropolitan area in the country, the great­
est concentration o f these workers is found in
large cities. New York City, Washington, D.C.,
Chicago, Philadelphia, Boston, New Orleans,
Detroit, St. Louis, and Baltimore lead in the
employment o f cabdrivers.

To become a taxi driver in most large cities,
it is necessary to have, in addition to a Stateissued chauffeur’s license, a special taxicab opera­
tor’s license issued by the local police or safety
department or Public Utilities Commission.
Although licensing requirements vary consider­
ably among cities, in general, applicants must be
over 21, in good health, have a good driving
record, and have no criminal record. A driver’s
record is checked for arrests, both locally and
through the Federal Bureau of Investigation
(F B I).
Most large communities require an applicant
for a taxi driver’s license to pass a written
examination on taxicab and traffic regulations.
The examination may include questions on street
locations, insurance regulations, accident reports,
lost articles, zoning or meter rules, and passenger
pickup and deliveries. In some cities, the cab
company will teach the driver-applicant taxicab
regulations and the location of streets and impor­
tant buildings. In other cities, the driver may
prepare himself for the license examination.
After the driver has passed the examination, he
pays an annual license fee, generally ranging
from 50 cents to $5.
Although formal education is seldom required,
many companies prefer applicants for a taxi
driving job to have at least an eighth-grade edu­
cation. A neat, well-groomed appearance is
desirable, as is the ability to deal tactfully and
courteously with all types of people. Good foot,
hand, and eye coordination are particularly desir­
able because taxi drivers must often operate their
cabs in fast moving and heavy traffic.
Opportunities for advancement for taxi driv­
ers are extremely limited, with promotion to the
job of dispatcher often the only possible advance­
ment. Some drivers, however, have become road
supervisors, garage superintendents, or claims
agents. Many drivers who work for companies
try to purchase their own cabs so that they can
become their own employers. In some large
cities, however, the number of cabs is restricted
by ordinance, which may limit the opportunity
to own cabs in such areas.


Employment Outlook
There will be many opportunities for new
workers to become taxi drivers during the
remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer run,
primarily because of the high turnover rate in
this occupation. However, the total number of
full-time taxi drivers is not expected to change
In the past, the employment of taxi drivers
has been adversely affected by the increased use
of privately owned automobiles, rented cars, and
the continuing population shift to the suburbs.
In more recent years, however, the level of
employment appears to have stabilized. Increased
population, higher consumer incomes, parking
difficulties, ,and higher local transit bus and
streetcar fares are some of the factors which may
lead to a greater use of taxicabs and a slight
increase in the employment of taxicab drivers.
The high turnover rate in this occupation
results from the lack of assurance of a steady
income, long hours, and the use of this job by
some workers as stopgap employment when better
jobs are not available. Transfers from this occu­
pation are expected to be the major reason that
employment opportunities will be available for
many new workers who wish to enter this field
of driving.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Comprehensive data on earnings of taxi driv­
ers are not available. Most full-time drivers on
the East Coast and in the Midwest averaged
about $75 to $85 a week, according to fragmen­
tary information from a small number of employ­
ers. In one major eastern city with a large
number of taxicabs, a full-time taxi driver could
expect to earn, with tips, about $100 a week for
a 6-day week, in early 1963. Driver-owners
earned about the same amount, after deduction
of their overhead and driving costs. In many
instances, a 5- or 6-day week is optional on the
part of the driver.
Most taxi drivers employed by taxicab com­
panies are paid a percentage—usually between
40 and 50 percent—of the total fare. Drivers
also frequently receive tips, ranging from 10 to

20 percent of the fare. Some companies pay
their drivers a salary and give them an addi­
tional commission based upon the amount of
business the drivers do. A few companies guar­
antee their drivers minimum daily or weekly
earnings. Many drivers rent their cabs from the
company by the day for a set price. Any receipts
above the cab rental and other operating expenses
are retained by the drivers.
A large percentage of full-time taxi drivers
work 9 or 10 hours a day for 6 days a week.
They usually begin work between 6 a.m. and
8 a.m. Many drivers work nights, starting between
3 p.m. and 5 p.m. Some drivers work on Sundays
and holidays.
Many college students have been able to work
their way through school by driving cabs on a
part-time basis and during summer and spring
holidays. Some workers also become part-time
drivers in order to supplement their regular
Driving a taxicab is not physically strenuous.
Most drivers do not change tires or do other
heavy repair work. Drivers are, however, sub­
ject to nervous tension from driving in heavy
traffic in all kinds of weather, and dealing with
all types of passengers.
Many drivers find the lack of direct super­
vision by an employer one of the more desir­
able aspects of their job. They may, however,
be subject to municipal regulations which gov­
ern their personal appearance, the fares they
charge, and their driving practices.
Although unionization in this occupation is
not widespread in small cities, taxi drivers in
many of the large cities belong to labor unions,
particularly those drivers who work for the
large taxicab companies. The main union in this
field is the International Brotherhood of Team­
sters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and Helpers of
America (Ind.).
Taxi drivers usually put in long hours of work
and do not receive overtime pay. Many of them
do not receive fringe benefits, such as pensions
and severance pay, that workers in many other
occupations receive. When economic conditions
decline, their earnings are generally reduced
because of increased competition for less business.

N ature of W ork

Many of the products and parts made in fac­
tories must be assembled during various steps
in the manufacturing process as well as in the
final assembly of the product. For example,
television sets, automobiles, and refrigerators are
typical of the products which undergo many
assembly operations. The workers who put to­
gether parts or finished products are known as
Some assemblers, known as floor assemblers,
put together large, heavy machinery or equip­
ment on shop floors, often fastening parts with
bolts, screws, or rivets. Others, known as bench
assemblers, put together small parts to make
subassemblies or small complete units, while work­
ing at a bench. Many assemblers work on prod­
ucts or parts which move automatically past their
work stations on conveyors. These workers must
do their assembly job within the time period it
takes the part or product to pass their work
The job duties of assemblers depend upon the
product being manufactured and the manufac­
turing process being used. In aircraft and missile
production, these workers may assemble and
install parts into subassemblies. In the auto­
mobile industry, one assembler may start nuts
on bolts and the next worker on the assembly line
tightens the nuts with power-driven tools. Assem­
blers in electronic plants may connect parts with
electrical wire.
Semiskilled assemblers do relatively simple,
repetitive operations under close supervision,
often guided by simple instructions. In contrast,
skilled assemblers work on the more complex
parts of subassemblies with little or no super­
vision and are responsible for the final assembly

Women are often employed as bench assemblers

of complex jobs. These skilled workers must
know how to read blueprints and other engi­
neering specifications and use a variety of tools
and precision measuring instruments. In rela­
tively new fields such as electronics, instrumenta­
tion, and missiles, subassembly work may require
a high degree of skill.
The kinds of tools semiskilled assemblers use
depend upon the job they are doing and the
product on which they are working. Pliers,
screwdrivers, soldering irons, power drills, and
wrenches are among the common tools used by
semiskilled assemblers.



Where Employed
Assemblers work in plants that mass-produce
products such as automobiles, aircraft, television
sets, cameras, refrigerators, watches, and elec­
trical motors. In early 1963, approximately
600,000 semiskilled assemblers were employed in
manufacturing plants, with the great majority in
metalworking plants. The majority of semi­
skilled assemblers were employed in California,
New York, Michigan, Illinois, Ohio, Indiana, and
More than 2 out of 5 semiskilled assemblers
were women, who worked primarily as bench
assemblers. More than 4 out of 10 women assem­
blers worked in the electrical machinery, equip­
ment, and supply industry. Large numbers of
women assemblers also were employed in other in­
dustries—fabricated metals; machinery, except
electrical; transportation equipment; and instru­
ments and related products.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Inexperienced workers who are hired to do
semiskilled assembly work are usually trained on
the job in a few hours or days. The new worker
may have his job duties explained to him by his
supervisor and then be placed under the super­
vision o f a more experienced employee. The
trainee observes the experienced employee at
work or directly assists him in his work. When
the learner develops sufficient speed, he is placed
“ on his own” and is responsible for the work he
Employers generally want applicants for semi­
skilled assembly jobs to be physically able,
dependable, and to have some aptitude for
mechanical work.
Some employers prefer persons with no previ­
ous experience in factory assembly work so that
they can be more easily trained in the employers’
assembly methods. High school graduates or
workers who have taken vocational school
courses, such as blueprint reading, are preferred
by many employers. Employers frequently hire
aplicants who do not have a high school
diploma. Generally, for production-line assem­
bly jobs, employers look for applicants who can
do routine work at a steady and fast pace. For
other types o f assembly jobs, applicants may have

to meet special requirements. For example, in
plants producing electrical and electronic prod­
ucts, which may contain many different colored
wires, applicants often are tested for color blind­
Many women are employed in semiskilled
bench assembly jobs because such work is rela­
tively light and often requires the ability to work
with small and delicate objects. This is par­
ticularly true in the electrical and electronic
equipment industry. Male workers are usually
employed as floor or line assemblers, where the
work is physically hard. Final automobile assem­
bly, for example, is generally done by men.
A relatively small number of workers who
learn to perform a variety of assembly work and
who have a knowledge of blueprint reading and
shop mathematics are able to become skilled
assemblers. A few workers also may become
skilled inspectors or foremen.

Employment Outlook
The employment o f semiskilled assemblers
is expected to increase by several thousand
annually during the remainder o f the 1960’s and
in the longer run. Most job opportunities, however,
will result from the need to replace large numbers
o f workers who retire, die, or transfer to other
fields of work, and to replace women who leave
their jobs to marry or raise a family. Deaths and
retirements alone will account for about 20,000
openings each year.
Most of the industries that employ these
workers, especially the electrical machinery in­
dustry, are expected to increase their employ­
ment during this period.
Not all assembly jobs are expected to increase
at the same rate. Technological changes may
slow the growth of some jobs. For example, the
introduction of printed electrical circuits reduces
the wiring work required in assembling radio
and television sets, thus affecting the employment
of assembly workers in plants producing these
products. An increase in the use of automatic
assembly processes also may decrease the employ­
ment of these workers.
Although the outlook for semiskilled assem­
blers in manufacturing industries is generally
favorable, employment in metalworking manu­



facturing plants, which have many assemblers,
is particularly sensitive to changes in business
activities and national defense needs. Therefore,
these workers are subject occasionally to layoffs.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Earnings of semiskilled assemblers in manufac­
turing industries vary widely, depending on their
skill, the type of product assembled, and factors
such as the size and location of the plant in
which they are employed.
Assembly jobs are commonly classified as A,
B, and C, to reflect the level of skill and respon­
sibility involved. (For the purpose of this pub­
lication, class B and C assemblers are considered
to be semiskilled workers.) In mid-1962, average
straight-time hourly earnings of class B male
assemblers in machinery (other than electrical)
plants in 21 large cities and metropolitan areas
ranged from $1.82 in Dallas to $2.88 in Pitts­
burgh; and earnings of class C male assemblers
ranged from $1.38 in Dallas to $2.61 in Mil­
waukee. Hourly earnings of male assemblers
varied considerably in the same city. In Dallas,
for example, the straight-time hourly earnings of
class B male assemblers ranged from $1.40 to
$2.40; and, in Milwaukee, from under $2 to $4 and

over. Earnings of class C female assemblers
ranged from $1.32 in Dallas to $2.48 in Detroit.
The working conditions of semiskilled assem­
blers differ depending on the particular job per­
formed. Assemblers of electronic equipment may
put together small components at a bench in a
room which is clean, well lighted, and free from
dust. Floor assemblers of industrial machinery,
on the other hand, may install and assemble heavy
parts and are often exposed to contact with oil
and grease. Assemblers on assembly lines may
be under pressure to perform their assignments
in the time the conveyor moves the parts or subassemblies past their work stations.
Many semiskilled assemblers in manufacturing
industries are members of labor unions. These
unions include the International Association of
Machinists; the International Union o f Elec­
trical, Radio and Machine Workers; the Inter­
national Union, United Automobile, Aerospace
and Agricultural Implement Workers of Amer­
ica ; and the International Brotherhood of Electri­
cal Workers. Most labor-management contracts in
the manufacturing plants in which assemblers
are employed provide for fringe benefits such as
holiday and vacation pay, health insurance, life
insurance, and retirement pensions.

Nature of Work
Almost everything manufactured must be care­
fully inspected during the manufacturing proc­
ess. The millions of automobiles, sewing machines,
television sets, production machinery, and other
mass-produced items must be tested and inspected
to make sure they operate properly. The workers
who see that the size and quality of raw materials,
parts, and assemblies, and the operation of the
finished products, meet specifications are known
as inspectors.
Semiskilled inspectors may look for scratches
and other defects in products or parts. They
often use simple gages to find out whether parts
are made to specified sizes; they may also use
measuring devices such as micrometers (a preci­
sion-measuring instrument) to check the accu­
racy of the parts. Semiskilled inspectors may be

required to read simple work orders and do
arithmetic involving decimals and fractions when
reading measuring instruments. Some inspectors
use handtools, such as screwdrivers or pliers, in
their work.
The work done by inspectors varies by indus­
try. For example, in radio and television manu­
facturing plants, many inspectors test tubes and
circuits to see that they meet specifications. In
the automobile industry, they examine raw mate­
rials and parts during the various stages of manu­
Inspectors often keep records of the number
of parts they have inspected, accepted, and
rejected. When they find a large number of
faulty pieces, they notify their supervisors so
that corrections can be made on the production
line. In some industries, inspectors may perform



T ra in in g , O th e r Q u a lifica tio n s, a n d A d v a n c e m e n t

Inspectors test electronic components

additional duties such as making minor repairs
and adjustments, and grading products for
The work done by semiskilled inspectors in
factories is different from that performed by
skilled inspectors. Semiskilled inspectors usually
work under close supervision; skilled inspectors
work under general supervision. In the metal­
working industries, skilled inspectors are often
required to read blueprints, interpret specifica­
tions, and use complex precision-measuring
W h e re Em p lo ye d

In early 1963, about 500,000 semiskilled inspec­
tors were employed in a wide variety of manufac­
turing plants. Most semiskilled inspectors were
employed in plants that produce electrical
motors, refrigerators, hoists, lathes, automobiles
and parts, textiles, and clothing, while others
were employed in plants that produce aircraft,
missiles, rubber and plastic products, and in
those that process food. More than half of the
semiskilled inspectors were employed in Ohio,
New York, Michigan, Illinois, Pennsylvania,
California, and New Jersey.

Semiskilled inspectors are generally trained on
the job for a brief period—from a few hours
or days to several months, depending upon the
skill required.
Many employers prefer workers with no previ­
ous inspection experience. They look for appli­
cants who are physically able, dependable, have
good eyesight, and can follow instructions. Some
employers prefer experienced production workers
for inspection jobs. A few large companies give
aptitude tests in selecting new employees for
inspection work. For example, in the electronics
industry, new workers may be given tests to
determine their ability to work with numbers.
Employers also look for employees who can do
work requiring constant attention. Employers
often hire applicants who do not have a high
school diploma.
More than 2 out of 5 semiskilled inspectors are
women. They are employed throughout the
industries that manufacture metal products, but
especially in the electrical machinery industry,
where many jobs are not physically demanding.
They generally work in plants that produce
relatively small and light products and parts,
such as electrical and electronic equipment.
Women inspectors predominate in many food,
textile, and apparel products industries.
Some semiskilled inspectors in the metal prod­
ucts industries who supplement their work experi­
ence with formal educational courses, such as
blueprint reading, shop mathematics, and elec­
trical theory, may advance to jobs as skilled
inspectors. A few semiskilled inspectors, after
acquiring sufficient experience and knowledge,
may advance to foremen jobs.
E m p lo ym e n t O u tlo o k

The employment o f semiskilled inspectors is
expected to increase by several thousand annually
during the remainder o f the 1960’s and in the
longer run. In addition, a considerable number
of job opportunities will result as workers retire,
die, or transfer to other fields o f work, and as
women leave their jobs to marry or raise a family.
Deaths and retirements alone will account for
about 15,000 openings each year.


Most of the industries that employ these
workers, especially the electrical machinery in­
dustry, are expected to increase their employ­
ment in the long run. The growing complexity
of the products manufactured in our factories,
and rising quality standards, should also result
in a need for more inspectors. These favorable
factors will be partially offset, however, by the
increasing use of mechanized and automatic
inspection equipment.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Inspectors’ earnings vary considerably depend­
ing on their skill, the type of product inspected,
the method of wage payment, and the size and
location of the plant in which they are employed.
Inspector jobs are commonly classified as A, B,
and C, to reflect the level of skill and responsi­
bility involved. (For the purpose of this publica­
tion, class B and C inspectors are considered to
be semiskilled workers.) In mid-1962, average
straight-time hourly earnings of class B male
inspectors in machinery (other than electrical)
plants in 19 large cities and metropolitan areas
ranged from $2.05 in Dallas to $2.89 in Phila­
delphia; and earnings of class C male inspectors
ranged from $1.72 in Dallas to $2.73 in Detroit.
Even among machinery plants located in the same
city, earnings of male inspectors of comparable

skills differed. For example, among machinery
plants in Dallas, straight-time hourly earnings of
class B male inspectors ranged from $1.70 to $2.40;
among machinery plants in Philadelphia, the
range was from $2.10 to $3.40. Other studies
indicate that average hourly earnings of inspectors
(as a group) in the food processing, textile, and
apparel industries were about equal to those of
class C inspectors in metalworking industries.
The working conditions of inspectors vary con­
siderably. For example, some may work in welllighted, air-conditioned workplaces in an aircraft
or missile plant; others may work on the pro­
duction floor of a machinery or metal fabricat­
ing plant, often exposed to high temperatures,
oil, grease, and noise.
Many inspectors employed in manufacturing
industries are members of labor unions. The
International Union, United Automobile, Aero­
space and Agricultural Implement Workers of
America; the International Association of Machanists; the International Union of Electrical,
Eadio and Machine Workers; and the Interna­
tional Brotherhood of Electrical Workers are
among the larger unions to which these workers
belong. Most of the labor-management contracts
in manufacturing plants employing inspectors
provide for fringe benefits such as paid holidays
and vacations, health insurance, life insurance,
and retirement pensions.

Power Truck Operators
Nature of Work
In the past, manual workers in factories usu­
ally did the hard physical labor of moving raw
materials and products. Today, many heavy
materials are moved, with little physical effort,
by workers who operate various types of selfpowered trucks, which can easily carry tons of
material and lift it to heights of 18 or more feet.
A typical truck operated by these workers has
a hydraulic or electric lifting mechanism with
attachments such as forks to lift piles of cartons
or other containers, and scoops to lift coal or
other loose material. Some power trucks are
equipped with tow bars used to pull small

Power truck operators start the truck, make
it go forward or backward, stop the truck, and
control the lifting mechanism and attachments
by moving pedals and/or levers. Power truck
operators may be required to keep records of
material moved, do some manual loading and
unloading of materials, and maintain their
trucks in good working condition by cleaning,
oiling, checking water in batteries, and making
simple adjustments.
The driver must use care and skill in driving
his truck. For example, in driving through
aisles where material is stored or when loading
or removing materials from stock, he must be
able to judge distance so that no damage occurs.
The operator also must know how much of a load



Large companies generally require applicants
for a power truck operator job to pass a physical
examination. Many large employers also have
formal training programs for new employees.
In these training programs, the employee learns
to operate the power truck, to do simple mainte­
nance work, principles of loading and handling
materials, plant layout and plant operation, and
safe driving practices and rules.
There are some opportunities for advancement.
A few operators may become materials move­
ment foremen or supervisors.
Em p lo ym e n t O u tlo o k

Forklift truck operator moves load

the truck can carry and the kinds o f jobs it can
W h e re Em p lo ye d

Semiskilled power truckers are employed in all
types o f manufacturing industries. Many of these
workers are employed in metalworking plants that
manufacture products such as automobiles and
automobile parts, machinery, fabricated metal
products, and iron and steel.
In addition to working in factories, large
numbers of these workers are employed in ware­
houses, depots, dock terminals, mines, and other
places where great quantities of materials must
be moved. In 1961, between 5,000 and 6,000 fork­
lift truck operators were employed by the Fed­
eral Government; most o f them were employed
by the Army, Navy, and Air Force. Large num­
bers o f industrial power truck operators work
in California, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Illi­
nois, and Pennsylvania.
T ra in in g , O the r Q u a lifica tio n s, a n d A d v a n ce m e n t

Most workers can learn to operate a power
truck in a few days. It takes several weeks,
however, to learn the physical layout and opera­
tion of a plant or other establishment and the
most efficient way o f handling the materials to
be moved.

The number of power truck operators in manu­
facturing industries is expected to increase in
the remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer
run. Replacement needs resulting from retire­
ments, deaths, and transfers to other jobs also
will provide many job openings.
Most of the industries which employ large
numbers of these workers are expected to have
a long-range upward trend in employment. In
addition, the greater use o f power trucks in mate­
rials handling will increase the need for power
truck operators. The favorable effects of these
two factors on employment o f power truck opera­
tors will be partially offset by the continued
development and use o f more efficient power
trucks and other mechanized materials-handling
equipment. For example, mechanized materialshandling equipment, such as continuous conveyor
systems, moves materials in fixed paths at con­
stant rates of speed, eliminating bottlenecks and
allowing for accurate production control. This
method of materials handling will result in less
use o f power trucks in some plants.
E a rn in g s a n d W o rk in g C o n d itio n s

Power truck operators employed in manufac­
turing industries generally are paid an hourly
rate. In 1962, the average straight-time hourly
earnings of forklift power truck operators in
manufacturing plants in 75 cities and areas
ranged from $1.39 in Jackson, Miss., to $2.89 in
Akron, Ohio.
Many power truck operators are subject to
hazards—such as falling objects and collisions



between vehicles. Safety instruction is therefore
an important part of the job training in power
trucking work.
The driver may operate his truck inside build­
ings, or outdoors where he is exposed to various
weather conditions. Some operators may handle
loose material that may be dirty or dusty.
Power truck operators have somewhat varied
work in moving materials throughout a plant.

Their work is likely to be less repetitive and
routine than that of workers who do semiskilled
machine operator work.
Many power truck operators are members of
labor unions. Most labor-management contracts
in manufacturing plants employing power truck
operators provide for fringe benefits such as
paid holidays and vacations, health insurance,
life insurance, and retirement pensions.

Production Painters
Nature of Work
Almost every metal or wood product manufac­
tured by American industry is given a coating
of paint or other protective material. Although
some of this paint is applied by automatic
methods, much of the painting in mass-produc­
tion industries is done by workers known as pro­
duction painters. Most of these workers use spray
guns to apply paint, lacquer, varnish, or othe£
finishes to parts or finished manufactured prod­
ucts. Some production painters use brushes to
apply paint. The work done by production
painters in factories is different from that per­
formed by skilled painters who are employed
in construction and maintenance work. (See
index for page number references to Painters.)
Painters who operate spray guns pour mixed
paints into a spray gun container which is at­
tached to an air-compressor unit. They adjust
the nozzle of the spray gun and the air-compressor
so that the paint will be applied uniformly.
The objects being sprayed may be stationary or
attached to a moving conveyor. When working
on objects requiring more than one color, produc­
tion painters may apply masking tape to prevent
overlapping of colors.
Although the duties of most production paint­
ers are quite simple and repetitive, the jobs of
some may be rather varied. These production
painters may make decisions involving the appli­
cation of finishes, thinning of paint, and the
adjustment of paint spray equipment. Produc­
tion painters also may clean the surface to be
painted before painting. For some assignments,

which require production painters to mix paints
and figure the size of the area to be painted,
they use simple arithmetic involving decimals
and fractions. Production painters may replace
nozzles and clean guns and other paint equip­
ment when necessary. Some production painters
may operate specialized spray guns such as those
operated at high temperatures and used to spray
powdered plastics. In addition to spray tanks
and spray guns, production painters use tools
such as mixing paddles, pliers, rules, and liquid
mixing devices.

Where Employed
About 110,000 production painters were em­
ployed in manufacturing industries in early
1963; about 85 percent of these were in indus­
tries making durable items such as automobiles,
refrigerators, furniture, electrical measuring
meters, and transformers. More than half of all
production painters were employed in New York,
Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, California, Pennsyl­
vania, North Carolina, and New Jersey. Approx­
imately 15 percent of them were women.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Most production painters learn their jobs
through on-the-job training. The length of
training may vary from 2 weeks to several
The new worker may have his job duties
explained to him by his supervisor and then be
placed under the supervision of an experienced



E m p lo ym e n t O u tlo o k

Several thousand job opportunities for new
production painters are expected during the rest
of the 1960’s and in the longer run. Many job
openings will arise from the need to replace
workers who retire, die, or transfer to other
lines o f work. Deaths and retirements alone will
result in almost 2,000 openings each year.
Many industries which employ production
painters are expected to increase their employ­
ment. Employment of production painters, how­
ever, will not increase as rapidly as total employ­
ment in these industries because o f the increas­
ing development and use o f mechanized and auto­
matic painting equipment.
E a rn in g s a n d W o rk in g C o n d itio n s

Production painter sprays automobile body part attached to
moving conveyor

employee. The trainee may observe the experi­
enced employee at work or assist him in his work.
Persons going into this work should be in good
health, be able to stand for long periods of time,
have a steady hand, and have good eyesight so
that they can distinguish between colors and
see whether the paint is applied evenly.
There are some opportunities for advancement
in this field of work. A small number of workers
have become skilled inspectors or foremen.

Production painters generally are paid on an
hourly basis. According to a 1962 wage survey
of the nonupholstered wood household furniture
industry, male production painters had average
straight-time hourly earnings of $1.70. An exami­
nation of selected 1962 labor-management con­
tracts in the metalworking industries indicates
that these workers earned from about $2.20 to
$2.70 an hour.
Production painters are exposed to fumes from
paint and paint-mixing ingredients. Some paint­
ers wear protective goggles and masks which
cover the nose and mouth. When working on
large objects, they may work in awkward and
cramped positions.
Many production painters are members o f
unions. Among the labor organizations to which
they belong are the International Union, United
Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Imple­
ment Workers of America; the United Furniture
Workers of America; and the United Steelwork­
ers of America. Many labor-management con­
tracts in the plants in which these workers are
employed provide for fringe benefits such as holi­
day and vacation pay, health insurance, life
insurance, and retirement pensions.

Stationary Firemen (Boiler)
N ature of W o rk

Stationary firemen employed in manufacturing
plants are semiskilled workers who operate and

maintain steam boilers used to power industrial
machinery, and to heat factories. Their duties
and responsibilities vary. Some experienced sta-



Where Employed

Stationary fireman lights a boiler

tionary firemen may be responsible for inspecting
boiler equipment, for lighting boilers, and
building up steam pressure. On the other hand,
the responsibilities of some stationary firemen
may be limited to keeping equipment in good
working order by cleaning, oiling, and greasing
moving machinery parts.
In most plants, stationary firemen operate
mechanical devices which control the flow of air,
gas, oil, or powdered coal into the firebox in
order to keep proper steam pressures in the
boilers. Duties o f these workers may include
reading meters and other instruments to make
sure that the boilers are operating efficiently and
in accordance with safety regulations.
Fully qualified stationary firemen should be
able to detect malfunctions without relying
entirely on safety devices. In some plants, sta­
tionary firemen may be expected to know how to
make minor repairs. Stationary firemen are
often supervised by stationary engineers. (The
stationary engineer is a skilled worker who is
responsible for the operation and maintenance
of a variety of equipment, including boilers,
diesel and steam engines, and refrigeration and
air-conditioning equipment. See index for page
number reference to Stationary Engineers.)

About 50,000 stationary firemen were employed
in a wide variety of manufacturing industries in
early 1963. Generally^ these workers are employed
in industries which are large users of power
generating equipment. Leading industries in the
employment o f stationary firemen are lumber,
food, iron and steel, paper, chemicals, and trans­
portation equipment. The lumber and paper
industries, together, employed about 11,000 sta­
tionary firemen.
Because stationary firemen work in so many
different industries, they are employed in all parts
of the country. Although some are employed in
small towns and even rural areas, most work in
the more heavily populated areas where large
manufacturing plants are located. The States of
Ohio, New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Michi­
gan, New Jersey, and California account for
about 45 percent of the total number of firemen.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Some large cities, and a few States, require
stationary firemen to be licensed. Applicants can
obtain the knowledge and experience to pass the
license examination by first working as a helper
in a boilerroom, or working as a stationary fire­
man under a conditional license.
License requirements differ from city to city
and from State to State. However, the appli­
cant usually must prove that he meets the experi­
ence requirements for the license and pass an
examination testing his knowledge of the job.
For specific information on State and local
licensing requirements, consult your State or local
licensing authorities.
There are two types of stationary firemen li­
censes—for low and high pressure boilers. Low
pressure firemen operate low pressure boilers gen­
erally used for heating. High pressure firemen
operate the more powerful high pressure boilers
and auxiliary boiler equipment used to power
machinery and equipment in addition to heating
buildings. Both high and low pressure opera­
tors, however, may operate equipment o f any
pressure class, provided a stationary engineer
is on duty.
Stationary firemen should understand the
operation of machinery and must have normal
vision and good hearing. (Because of the


mechanization of equipment, physical strength
is no longer a major requirement for this type of
Stationary firemen may advance to jobs as sta­
tionary engineers. To become stationary engi­
neers, firemen sometimes supplement their onthe-job training by taking courses in subjects
such as practical chemistry; elementary physics;
blueprint reading; applied electricity; and the­
ory of refrigeration, air conditioning, ventila­
tion, and heating. Stationary firemen may also
advance to jobs as maintenance mechanics.
Em p lo ym e n t O u tlo o k

Employment of stationary firemen in manufac­
turing industries is expected to continue to
decline during the remainder of the 1960’s and in
the longer run. Some opportunities for new
workers, however, will result each year from the
need to replace workers who transfer to other
fields of work or who retire or die.
An increase in the use of stationary boilers and
auxiliary equipment is expected during the next
10 to 15 years. However, use of automatic, more
powerful, and more centralized equipment, and
better use of manpower are expected to result in
a decline in the number of stationary firemen.
In large plants where turbines and engines are
housed under a separate roof and where there is
a need for constant surveillance of boilers, fire­
men will continue to be needed.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Among the factors affecting the earnings of
stationary firemen are the type of equipment

692-408 0 — 63--- 32

which these workers operate and the industry in
which they are employed. In 1962, the average
straight-time hourly earnings of stationary fire­
men in manufacturing plants in 64 cities and
areas ranged from $1.33 in Raleigh, N.C., to $3.11
in Detroit, Mich., Los Angeles and Long Beach,
Although many boilerrooms where stationary
firemen work are clean and well lighted, these
conditions do not always exist. Most stationary
firemen, even under the most favorable condi­
tions, are at times exposed to noise, high temper­
atures, dirt, dust, contact with oil and grease,
odors, and fumes from oil, gas, coal, or smoke.
In repair or maintenance work, these workers may
have to crawl inside a boiler and work in a
crouching or kneeling position.
Stationary firemen are subject to burns and
falls, and injury from moving machinery. Boil­
ers and auxiliary equipment that are not oper­
ated correctly, or are defective, may be danger­
ous to these workers and to other persons in
the work vicinity. However, modern equipment
and safety procedures have reduced accidents
considerably in recent years.
Many stationary firemen are employed in
plants that have labor-management contracts,
most of which provide benefits that may in­
clude paid holidays and vacations, hospitaliza­
tion, medical and surgical insurance, sickness
and accident insurance, and retirement pensions.
Among the unions to which these workers belong
are the International Brotherhood of Firemen
and Oilers and the International Union of
Operating Engineers.

(D .O.T. 4-86.010 and .210)

Nature of Work
Blacksmiths make and repair many different
kinds of metal articles and parts, such as tools,
machine frames, automobile parts, and other
industrial and agricultural equipment. They also
sharpen hand and machine tools, such as chisels,
drills, and picks. They do their work by shap­
ing and sometimes joining together glowing hot
metal which has been heated in a special type
of furnace called a forge. In performing the
shaping and joining processes, the latter known as
forge welding, blacksmiths hammer heated metal
on an anvil. They use handtools, such as hand
hammers, tongs, and chisels, and may also use
welding equipment, grinders, presses, and power
After a metal article or part has been formed,
the blacksmith may heat-treat it to harden and
temper it properly. He hardens the metal by
heating it to a high temperature and then let­
ting it quickly cool in an oil or water bath. To
temper the metal (that is, make it tougher and
less brittle), he also heats it, but to a lower
temperature than is needed for hardening, keeps
the metal at this lower temperature for a speci­
fied time, and then lets it cool gradually in the

Where Employed
About two-thirds of the approximately 21,000
blacksmiths employed in the United States in
early 1963 w^ere industrial blacksmiths. They
were employed in a variety of industries, mostly
for maintenance and repair work. Nearly half
of industrial blacksmiths worked in manufactur­
ing industries, especially in the basic iron and
steel industry and in the manufacture of

machinery, transportation equipment, and fabri­
cated metal products. Nearly one-fourth of indus­
trial blacksmiths worked in mining industries,
chiefly in the extraction of crude petroleum and
natural gas. (Where oil wells are being drilled,
for example, blacksmiths sharpen and temper
drill bits, repair tools, and assist drillers in the
operation and maintenance of drilling equip­
ment.) The railroads and the construction indus­
try also employed relatively large numbers of
industrial blacksmiths.
The remaining one-third of the estimated
21,000 blacksmiths worked in small shops where
they repaired tools and other equipment, and
performed such services as welding and tool
sharpening. Some blacksmiths in small estab­
lishments specialized in the shoeing o f horses.
More than four-fifths of the blacksmiths in small
repair shops were self-employed.
Job duties of blacksmiths are similar to those
of many forge shop workers, who operate heavy
machinery to shape and form articles from heated
metal. (A detailed discussion of jobs and job
opportunities in forge shops is provided in the
section on Forge Shop Occupations which
appears elsewhere in this Handbook. See index
for page numbers.)
Blacksmiths work in all parts of the country,
in small rural communities as well as in large
industrial centers. In 1960, only 6 States had
more than 1,000 blacksmiths each—Texas, Cali­
fornia, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Ohio, and New

Training and Other Qualifications
Most workers enter the occupation by getting
jobs as helpers in blacksmith shops, where they



gradually learn the trade. Others enter through
formal apprenticeship training programs, which
generally last 3 or 4 years and customarily pro­
vide training in blueprint reading, the use of tools
and equipment, heat-treatment of metal, and
forging methods, including forge welding. Most
apprentices are found in large industrial firms
rather than in small repair shops. Vocational
school or high school courses in metalworking,
blueprint reading, and mathematics will be help­
ful to young persons interested in becoming
A blacksmith must have considerable strength
and stamina to pound metal into shape and to
handle heavy parts for an entire working day.
He must also have a precise touch when shaping
metal parts, even though he uses heavy tools and

Employment Outlook
A small number of openings are expected for
new workers in the blacksmith trade during the
1960’s and in the longer run, to replace workers
who shift to other occupations or who retire or
die. Many blacksmiths are older men; nearly
1,000 blacksmiths will leave the occupation each
year, it is estimated, because of retirement or
The total number of blacksmiths in the country
is not expected to increase during the next 10 to
15 years, and may even decline. The rate of
decline, however, should be much less rapid than
it has been during the past 10 or 20 years. The
employment of blacksmiths has already fallen
sharply because of declining activity in the rail­
road and coal mining industries, because many
tasks performed by blacksmiths have been trans­
ferred to other workers such as welders and forge
shop craftsmen, and because large forge shops have
been producing many small metal articles form­
erly made by blacksmiths—horseshoes, for
example. In addition, the use of parts which are
cheaper to replace than to repair has made unnec­
essary some repair work once done by blacksmiths.
The skills of all-round blacksmiths, however, will
continue to be needed in the maintenance depart­

ments of large industrial employers and in many
small metalworking and repair shops throughout
the country.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Earnings of skilled blacksmiths vary according
to the industry, the kind of shop, and the part of
the country in which they work. In the petroleum
industry in 1961, experienced blacksmiths were
receiving $3.13 to $3.38 an hour while trainees
were receiving $2.78 to $3.12 an hour. In the same
year, blacksmiths employed by one major steel
company were receiving $2.92 to $3.19 an hour;
blacksmiths employed in the shipbuilding indus­
try w^ere paid $2.80 to $3.27 an hour on the West
Coast, $2.67 to $3.07 an hour on the East Coast,
and $2.30 to $3.08 an hour on the Gulf Coast. In
railroad shops, straight-time hourly earnings for
blacksmiths averaged $2.65 in 1961.
Blacksmith shops, especially the larger ones,
are hot and noisy because of the furnaces and
hammers, although in recent years heat and
noise have been decreased by the introduction of
large ventilating fans and the lessening of
machine vibration. Blacksmiths are subject to a
number of job hazards, such as burns from forges
and heated metals and injuries from large pieces
of metal which may drop while being handled.
Increased use of safety devices, such as goggles,
metal-tip shoes, and leather aprons, have helped
to decrease the number of injuries.
Many blacksmiths belong to unions. One
important union in the trade is the International
Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron Shipbuilders,
Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers. Other unions
which represent blacksmiths include the United
Steelworkers of America and the International
Union of Journeymen Horseshoers. Major unionemployer agreements covering blacksmiths pro­
vide health insurance, paid vacations, and pen­
sion plans.

Where To Go for More Information
International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron
Shipbuilders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers,
8th at State Ave., Kansas City, Kans., 66101.



Boilermaking Occupations
N ature o f W o rk

Boilermakers, layout men, and fitup men are
skilled workers who specialize in the repair, fabri­
cating, and assembling of boilers, tanks, vats, and
similar vessels made of metal plate. These boilers
and other vessels are widely used throughout
industry to hold liquids and gases under pressure.
Boilermakers are primarily engaged in repairing
and erecting boilers and vessels, while layout men
and fitup men usually are employed in manufac­
turing new boilers and heavy tanks. The repair
work performed by boilermakers requires these
workers to have all-round skills; fitup men and
layout men have more specialized duties.
Boilermakers (D.O.T. 4—
83.100). These crafts­
men assemble and erect prefabricated parts and
fittings at construction sites where the boilers
or other pressure vessels are to be used. After
installation is completed, they make all necessary
tests to check for defects. Boilermakers also do
repair work in the field. After first determining
the cause of trouble, they may then dismantle
the boilers or other units and make repairs, such
as patching weak spots with metal stock, replac­
ing defective sections with new parts, or
strengthening joints. Installation and repair
work performed by boilermakers must often
meet standards set by State and local laws cover­
ing boilers and other pressure vessels.
Boilermakers use a variety of tools and equip­
ment in assembly and repair work. They cut
and shape plate to size with power shears, power
rolls, power presses, or oxyacetylene torches.
They use welding or riveting equipment. When
assembling and erecting steel plate units at a field
construction site, they may use all types of
rigging equipment including hoists, jacks, and
Layout Men (D.O.T. 4—
83.200). Metals used in
the manufacture of boilers, tanks, vats, and other
pressure vessels are initially prepared for fabri­
cating operations by layout men. These workers
mark on metal plates and tubes all curves, lines,
points, and dimensions which serve as directions

Boilermakers assemble units made of heavy steel plate

to other workers for cutting or shaping the parts
required for the pressure vessel being fabricated.
They lay out parts to scale as outlined on blue­
prints, sketches, or patterns. Layout men use
compasses, dividers, scales, surface gages, ham­
mers, and scribers in their work.
Fitup Men (D.O.T. 4^-83.300). Before the vari­
ous parts of boilers, tanks, vats, and other pres­
sure vessels are finally assembled, fitup men
assemble and temporarily fit them together in the
shop. They bolt or tack-weld parts together
and correct irregularities in parts so that they fit
together neatly and securely. Fitup men also
assemble and fit together nozzles, pipes, fittings,
and other parts.
Fitup men read and interpret blueprints and
drawings used in the manufacturing process, in
order to check parts for accuracy and fit accord­
ing to specifications. They use handtools such as
hammers, sledges, wrenches, and punches, and
equipment such as welding machines, portable
drills, and grinding tools.



Where Employed
About 25,000 boilermakers, layout men, and fitup men were employed in the United States in
early 1963. Boilermakers, who are engaged
mainly in repair and installation work, are
employed chiefly in the maintenance and repair
departments of firms in industries such as iron
and steel manufacturing, petroleum refining, rail­
road transportation, and electric and gas utilities.
Large numbers also work in Federal Govern­
ment installations, principally in Navy shipyards
and Federal power plants. Several thousand are
employed in the construction industry, mainly
to assemble and erect boilers and other pressure
vessels. Some work in repair shops. Layout men
and fit-up men are employed mainly in establish­
ments which fabricate fire-tube and water-tube
boilers, heating boilers, heat exchangers, heavy
tanks, and similar boiler-type items.
Boilermakers are employed in every State
because of the widespread need of their skills in
repair and installation work. Large numbers are
located in the Middle Atlantic and East North
Central regions, where the metalworking indus­
tries are concentrated. Most layout men and fitup
men work in these two industrial regions also.
Pennsylvania, California, Texas, Illinois, Ohio,
New York, and New Jersey are among the
leading States in numbers of boilermaking

Training and Other Qualifications
Many men have become boilermakers by work­
ing as helpers for several years, but most train­
ing authorities agree that a 4-year apprentice­
ship is the best way to learn this trade. In the
apprenticeship program, the apprentice works
under the close supervision of a journeyman who
instructs him in the skills of the craft. The
apprentice learns how to use the tools and
machines of the trade. Apprenticeship programs
usually provide for about 8,000 hours of rela­
tively continuous employment and training, sup­
plemented by about 600 hours of related technical
instruction. Some of the related technical sub­
jects studied by apprentice boilermakers are blue­
print reading, shop mathematics, welding tech­
niques, and shop metallurgical science covering
stress and strain of metals.

Many layout men and fitup men acquire their
skills on the job. They are usually hired as help­
ers and learn the trade by working with experi­
enced workers. It generally takes at least 2 years
to qualify as an experienced layout or fitup man
in a fabricating shop where boilers and other
pressure vessels are produced on a mass-produc­
tion basis. In shops where products are custom
made, layout and fitup jobs are generally filled
by men who have first qualified as skilled boiler­
Prior training in mathematics, blueprint read­
ing, and shopwork will be helpful to young men
interested in becoming boilermakers, layout men,
or fitup men. Mechanical aptitude and manual
dexterity are important qualifications, as are also
good physical health and the ability to do heavy

Employment Outlook
During the remainder of the 1960’s and in the
longer run, replacement needs will be the main
source of opportunities for new workers to enter
the boilermaking trades. Ketirements and deaths
are expected to result in several hundred job
openings annually during the next 10 to 15 years,
and additional openings may be created by the
transfer of experienced workers in these occupa­
tions to other fields of work.
A small increase in the total number of boiler­
makers, layout men, and fitup men may also be
expected during the next 10 to 15 years. The
demand for boiler products is expected to grow
because of the anticipated expansion of facilities
in electric and gas utilities, chemical plants, steel
plants, petroleum refineries, the construction
industry, and other major industries. The number
of boilermaking craftsmen fell during the 19507
chiefly because of a sharp decline in the number
employed by the railroads, but future expansion
in other industries is expected to more than offset
any further drop in railroad employment.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Wage rates of skilled boilermaking workers
compare favorably with those of other craftsmen.
Boilermakers generally are paid more than layout
men or fitup men, although wages vary widely in
each occupation because of differences in such



factors as the experience and skill of the worker,
the kind of industry in which he is employed, and
the region of the country in which he works.
Boilermakers in field assembly and installation
work generally receive higher hourly wages than
those in maintenance and repair departments of
industrial firms, although they may not be so
steadily employed throughout the year. A review
o f representative labor-management agreements
indicated that, in 1962, boilermakers in field con­
struction work were receiving $3.95 to $5.50 an
hour while those in other industries were receiving
$2.63 to $4.10 an hour. Layout men were paid
$2.57 to $3.69 an hour, and fitup men $2.50 to
$3.20 an hour.
Many boilermakers, layout men, and fitup men
are employed in plants which have labor-manage­
ment contracts. Most of these agreements have
provisions for fringe benefits such as hospitaliza­
tion, medical and surgical insurance, life insur­
ance, sickness and accident insurance, and retire­
ment pensions.
When engaged in boiler repair and assembly
work, boilermakers are often required to work
in cramped quarters or at great heights. Some

work must also be done under conditions of
dampness, heat, and poor ventilation.
Boilermaking tends to be more hazardous than
many other metalworking occupations. Although
the injury-frequency rate in boilershops is higher
than the average for manufacturing industries
as a whole, it has been declining in recent years
because of the safety programs of employers and
Most boilermakers, layout men, and fitup men
belong to labor unions. The principal union in
these trades is the International Brotherhood of
Boilermakers, Iron Shipbuilders, Blacksmiths,
Forgers and Helpers. Some boilermaking crafts­
men also are members of industrial unions, such
as the Industrial Union of Marine and Shipbuild­
ing Workers of America; the Oil, Chemical and
Atomic Workers International Union; and the
United Steelworkers of America.

Where To Go for More Information
International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron
Shipbuilders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers,
8th at State Ave., Kansas City, Kans., 66101.

Dispensing Opticians and Optical Laboratory Mechanics
Nature of Work
Dispensing opticians and optical laboratory
(shop) mechanics make and fit eyeglasses pre­
scribed by an eye physician (oculist or ophthal­
mologist) or optometrist to correct a patient’s
visual defect. The shop mechanic grinds and
polishes the lenses to meet the specifications of
the prescription and the dispensing optician, and
assembles the lenses in a frame. Then the dis­
pensing optician fits and adjusts the glasses to the
customer’s requirements. Fabricating and fitting
the glasses usually involve two separate functions.
The dispensing optician serves the customer
directly, and the optical mechanic works in the
shop. Occasionally, both functions are performed
by the same person.
Dispensing opticians may also fit contact lenses
which are worn in contact with the eyes and used
as a substitute for, or in addition to, conventional
eyeglasses. The most recently developed and cur­
rently the most popular type of contact lens is the

corneal lens, a tissue-thin plastic disc, about a
third of an inch in diameter.
The dispensing optician (D.O.T. 5-08.010)
works in a retail optical establishment. He makes
certain that the glasses follow the prescription
and fit the customer properly. The optician
determines exactly where the lenses should be
placed in relation to the pupils of the eyes by
measuring the distance between the centers of
the pupils. He also assists the customer in select­
ing the proper eyeglass frame by measuring the
customer’s facial features and giving consider­
ation to the various styles and colors of the
eyeglass frames.
Before prescription eyeglasses are fitted, the
dispensing optician prepares a work order which
gives the optical laboratory mechanic the infor­
mation he needs to interpret the prescription
properly, grind the lenses, and insert them in a
frame. The work order consists of the lens pre­
scription; information on the size, tint (where



appropriate), optical centering of the lens, and
other optical requirements; and the size, color,
style, and shape of the frame. After the eye­
glasses are made, the optician adjusts the frame
to the contours o f the customer’s face and head
to make sure they fit properly and comfortably.
He uses small handtools, such as optical pliers,
files, and screwdrivers, and also uses a precision
instrument to check the power and surface qual­
ity of the lenses. In small shops, especially, he
may do some lens grinding and finishing, and
sell other optical goods such as binoculars,
magnifying glasses, and nonprescription sun­
In fitting contact lenses, the dispensing
optician, following the physician’s or optome­
trist’s prescriptions, takes certain measures o f the
cornea of the customer’s eye and then prepares
specifications to be followed by a firm special­
izing in finishing such lenses. The dispenser uses
precision instruments to measure the power and
curvature of the lenses and the curvature of the
cornea of the eye. Contact lens fitting requires
considerably more skill, care, and patience than
conventional eyeglass fitting. The dispensing
optician instructs the customer in the insertion,
removal, and care of the contact lenses during
the initial period of adjustment, which may last
several weeks. The physician or optometrist
rechecks their fit, as needed. I f minor adjust­
ments are necessary, the dispensing optician
makes them; if major changes are needed,
he returns the lenses to the contact lens
The optical mechanic (D.O.T. 5-08.010) per­
forms the shop or laboratory work required to
make prescription eyeglasses; but he does not
make contact lenses, which involve somewhat d if­
ferent operations. The two principal types of
optical mechanics are the surfacer (D.O.T.
5-08.077) and the henchman (or finisher)
(D.O.T. 5-08.038). The surfacer, starting with
standard or stock size lens blanks, lays out the
work, grinds and polishes the surfaces of the
lenses, and makes sure that the ground lenses
conform to the prescription requirements. In
small laboratories, one man may perform all
these operations, and benchwork also. In large
laboratories, the work is divided into separate
operations which are performed by semiskilled

Benchman checks lens to insure proper fit into eyeglass frame

workers who operate power grinding and
polishing machines. The surfacer uses precision
instruments to measure the power of curvature
of lenses.
The benchman marks and cuts the ground and
polished lenses to fit the frame, bevels or smooths
the edges of the lenses, and assembles the lenses
and frame parts into the finished eyeglasses. In
large laboratories, these duties are divided into
several operations which are performed by semi­
skilled workers. The benchman uses small handtools, such as lens cutters, chippers, pliers, files,
protractors, and diamond point glass drills, and
also uses precision instruments to determine, for
example, if there are any imperfections in the
Both the surfacer and the benchman do repair
work; they may also duplicate broken eyeglass
lenses and replace damaged parts o f frames.
W here E m p lo ye d

About 21,000 dispensing opticians and optical
laboratory mechanics were employed throughout
the country in early 1963. O f these, about 8,000
(4,000 opticians and 4,000 mechanics) were em­
ployed in the Nation’s estimated 3,100 retail
optical shops. About 10,000 were employed in the
prescription departments of the approximately
1,400 wholesale optical laboratories which did
work for retail optical firms. About 300 optical

mechanics were employed in special prescription
shops in the large ophthalmic goods factories to
handle especially difficult jobs. In addition, about
1,600 mechanics and dispensers were employed by
eye physicians or optometrists who sell eyeglasses
directly to their patients. Some also work for
hospitals, government agencies, construction
firms, and mining companies. A few thousand
women are employed in these trades. Many work
as dispensers in retail optical outlets.
In addition to the 21,000 dispensing opticians
and optical mechanics mentioned above, many of
the approximately 2,500 proprietors of retail
optical establishments were optical mechanics or
dispensing opticians. Opticians and mechanics
are mainly employed in cities and industrial areas.
New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Texas,
California, and Illinois are the leading States in
the employment of these workers.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Most dispensing opticians and optical mechanics
learn their skills through informal, on-the-job
training. Mechanics start in jobs requiring
simple skill and dexterity and gradually work into
the more difficult jobs. Some then move into dis­
pensing offices and, with additional training,
become dispensing opticians. A small number of
opticians start immediately in dispensing work
and learn their jobs under the guidance of trained
High school graduates can prepare for these
occupations through formal apprenticeship pro­
grams. Most training authorities agree that
workers who learn as apprentices have more job
opportunities, improved job security, and greater
advancement. A number of optical firms have 4and 5-year apprenticeship programs. Apprentices
with exceptional ability may complete their
training in a shorter period.
The typical program for an optical mechanic
apprentice in eyeglass lens production includes
on-the-job training and related instruction in
ophthalmic optics (vision improvement). It also
includes instruction in subjects such as types
and measurement of lenses, the measurement and
curvature of lens surfaces, and the effect of glass
surfaces on light rays. This training qualifies a
person for both surfacing and finishing work.


However, apprentices may specialize in one phase
of this work in the larger laboratories. The
apprenticeship program for the surfacer empha­
sizes training in grinding operations, polishing,
blocking, inspection, and layout. The benchman
apprenticeship program concentrates on lens
edging, layout for cutting, lens cutting and
drilling, rimless spectacle assembly, inserting
lenses into frames, and inspection of eyeglasses.
The dispensing optician apprentice is given
training similar to that of the benchman appren­
tice. He receives additional instruction in optical
mathematics, optical physics, physiology of the
eye, use of precision measuring instruments, inter­
pretation of prescriptions, the mechanics of dis­
pensing, and the inspection of eyeglasses.
Formal school training plays a relatively small
part in preparing for these occuptions. However,
academic training for the dispensing optician is
becoming increasingly necessary. In 1962, three
schools offered 2-year full-time courses at the col­
lege level in optical fabricating and dispensing
work. In addition, one college offered a 2-year
evening course. Another college offered a 2-year
home study course in optics and optical dispens­
ing to supplement the training of apprentices in
retail optical dispensing shops. A few vocational
schools have courses for optical mechanics. The
larger manufacturers of contact lenses offer dis­
pensers courses of instruction in contact lens
fitting, usually lasting a few weeks.
Employers prefer applicants for entry jobs as
dispensing opticians and optical mechanics to be
high school graduates who have had courses in
the basic sciences. A knowledge of physics,
algebra, geometry, and mechanical drawing is
particularly valuable. Interest in, and ability
to do, precision work are essential. Because
dispensing opticians deal directly with the public
they must be tactful and have a pleasing per­
In early 1963, 17 States had licensing require­
ments governing dispensing opticians: Arizona,
Hawaii, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Nevada, New
Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island,
South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wash­
ington. Some of these States also require licenses
for optical laboratory mechanics in retail optical
shops or for the retail optical shop itself. Some



States permit dispensing opticians to fit contact
lenses, while other prohibit them from doing so. To
obtain a license, the applicant generally must
meet certain minimum standards of education and
training and also* pass a written or practical exami­
nation, or both. For specific requirements, the
licensing boards of individual States should be
Advancement opportunities are available to
both optical mechanics and dispensing opticians.
Optical laboratory mechanics can become super­
visors, foremen, and managers. Many optical
mechanics have become dispensing opticians,
although there is a trend to train especially for
this job. There are opportunities for mechanics
and dispensing opticians to go into business for
themselves. In the past decade or so, the number
of proprietors of retail optical establishments
has increased substantially, reaching a total of
about 2,500 in 1962. Most of these owners had
been optical mechanics or dispensing opticians.
A few opticians may be employed as salesmen
for wholesale optical goods companies or for
manufacturers of conventional eyeglasses or
contact lenses. With additional college train­
ing, an optician may become an optometrist. The
amount of college work depends on his formal
educational background.

Employment Outlook
Employment of optical mechanics and dispen­
sing opticians is expected to continue to increase
in the 1960’s and early 1970’s. New jobs in these
relatively small occupations will provide employ­
ment opportunities for a few thousand workers.
In addition, replacement needs will create sev­
eral hundred job openings each year.
More optical mechanics and dispensing
opticians will be needed to perform the growing
amount of prescription lens fabrication and dis­
pensing w ork. Because of the increasing size, lit­
eracy, and educational level of the population,
and the large increase in the number of older
persons (who are most likely to need eyeglasses),
the production of prescription lenses should grow
considerably. The market will expand also
because of the increased emphasis on good vision.
Half of the population over 6 years of age (about
83 million persons) now uses eyeglasses, and it
692-408 0— 63--- 33

is estimated that one-third of the remainder
should do so. (A widespread national promotion
program which seeks to educate the public about
the need for professional eye care is being spon­
sored by the optical industry.) The more attrac­
tive design of eyeglass frames, in many different
styles and colors, has increased the numbers of
pairs of eyeglasses purchased by individuals and
has lessened the opposition to wearing eyeglasses.
Contact lenses are now used by several million
people and their use is expected to continue, pro­
viding more dispensing work for opticians. The
population shift to the suburbs will also offer
more opportunities for dispensing opticians
(especially those with all-round training in both
shop and dispensing work) to work in, manage,
or establish optical stores.
As in the past, many technological develop­
ments affecting employment needs will continue
to be made in the manufacture of eyeglasses and
in the equipment used by optical laboratories
to fabricate lenses to prescription specifications.
Nevertheless, the expanding market for eye­
glasses should result in a continued growth in the
number of optical mechanics and dispensing
opticians. Optical mechanics will have more
opportunities for employment in benchwork or
finishing operations than in surfacing operations
because of the greatly increased output of newly
developed surfacing machines.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Weekly earnings for qualified optical laboratory
mechanics generally ranged from about $90 to
$150 a week in late 1962. Dispensing opticians
usually earn about 10 to 20 percent more than
optical mechanics. Opticians who have their own
business may earn much more. Foremen earn up
to 20 percent more than skilled workers depend­
ing on their experience, skill, and responsibilities.
Apprentices start at about 60 percent of the
skilled worker’s rate and their wages are increased
periodically, so that after they complete the
apprenticeship program they receive the pay of
skilled workers. Graduates of technical training
institutes start at $80 to $90 a week, and reach
$150 to $160 after 5 to 8 years’ experience.
Wholesale establishments usually have a 5-day,
40-hour workweek. Retail shop employees gener-



ally work a 5y2- or 6-day week. Workers in these
occupations usually have year-round employment.
The work o f the dispensing optician requires
little exertion and is generally performed in
pleasant, well-lighted, and well-ventilated sur­
roundings. Optical mechanics may work under
fairly noisy conditions, because power grinding
and polishing machines are used. New machines
are much quieter, however.
Physically handicapped persons who have full
use of their eyes and hands and can do seden­
tary work can perform some of the more
specialized jobs in the larger laboratories.
Some optical mechanics and dispensing opti­
cians are members of unions. One of the unions
organizing these workers is the International
Union of Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers.

W here To G o for M ore Info rm ation
American Optical Co.,
Box 1, Southbridge, Mass., 01551.
Bausch and Lomb, Inc.,
635 St. Paul St., Rochester, N.Y., 14602.
Optical Wholesalers Association,
222 W est Adams St., Chicago, 111., 60606.
International Union of Electrical,
Radio and Machine Workers,
1126 16th St. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20036.

The following organizations can provide gen­
eral information, the names of vocational schools,
and other materials on training requirements:
Guild of Prescription Opticians of America,
494 Broad St., Newark, N.J., 07102.
American Board of Opticianry,
Frank X . Brandstetter, Secretary,
821 Eggert Rd., Buffalo, N.Y., 14226.

(D.O .T. 4-74.010)

N ature of W ork

Electroplaters (platers) are skilled workers
who use plating solutions and electric current to
coat metal articles with a layer o f chromium,
nickel, silver, gold, or other metal. The electro­
plating process gives the metals a protective sur­
face or a more attractive appearance. Metal
products that are often electroplated include
such widely different items as automobile bump­
ers, cigarette lighters, silverware, costume
jewelry, plumbing fixtures, electrical appliances,
bearings, component parts o f electronic equip­
ment, jet engine parts, and ammunition.
The skilled plater first studies specifications
that indicate the parts of the objects to be
plated, the type o f plating metal to be applied,
and the desired thickness of the plating. He
prepares the plating solution by mixing a com­
pound o f the plating metal with other chemicals.
The plater also calculates the amount of electric
current required to carry the metal particles
through the plating solution and the length of
time the objects must remain in the solution so
that the plating metal will be of the specified
thickness. A plater must often use originality in
designing special racks for holding the objects
while they are in the plating tank.

Electroplater removes tumbler barrel o f small parts from
electroplates bath

In preparing an article for electroplating, the
plater cleans it by dipping it in cleansing solu­
tions, or by scouring it. He covers with lacquer,
or wfith rubber or plastic tape, any part of the
article which is not to be plated. He then places
the article in the plating tank, where an electric
current carries metal in the solution to the sur­
face being plated. When the desired thickness of


metal plate has been obtained, he removes, rinses,
and dries the article.
The plater must analyze the plating solution
periodically and sometimes add chemicals to keep
the solution constant. It is also necessary for
him to control the temperature of the solution.
He examines finished articles for defective plating
and may use micrometers, calipers, and electronic
devices to check the thickness of the plating. In
addition to plating, platers in some shops may
do other kinds of finishing, such as spray paint­
ing, dipping, and flow painting.
Electroplaters employed in job shops, which
do small lot plating of great variety, are often
required to use considerable ingenuity in their
work. Platers working in production shops,
where large lots of metal parts of the same type
are electroplated, usually carry out less difficult
assignments. In some of the larger shops, chem­
ists and chemical engineers often make the tech­
nical plating decisions while platers act as
foremen and do some of the routine plating work.
Electroplaters often supervise the work of
helpers, who place objects on racks before plating
and remove them afterwards, and clean tanks
and racks. In some shops, a plater is expected to
order chemicals and other supplies for his work.

Where Employed
Several thousand skilled electroplaters were
employed in early 1963. About 2 out of every 3
worked in independent job shops specializing in
metal plating and polishing for other manu­
facturing firms and for individuals. The remain­
ing platers were employed in the plating depart­
ments of plants primarily engaged in the manu­
facture of plumbing fixtures, heating and cooking
utensils, lighting fixtures, wire products, electric
control apparatus, electric appliances, radio and
television products, motor vehicles and parts,
mechanical measuring instruments, miscellaneous
hardware items, and other metal products.
Electroplaters are employed in almost every
part of the country, although most work in the
Northeast and Midwest, near the centers of the
metalworking industry. Large numbers of elec­
troplaters work in Chicago, Detroit, New York,
Cleveland, Newark, Jersey City, Providence, and
Los Angeles.



Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Most electroplaters are hired as helpers and
learn the trade by working with skilled platers.
It usually takes 4 years or longer to become a
skilled worker in this way. Since less time is
required to learn to work with only one or two
metals, many employers tend to develop special­
ized platers rather than those who can work
with all kinds of metals. This often makes it
difficult for a plater to transfer to shops doing
other kinds of electroplating.
Another way to enter the electroplating trade
is through an apprenticeship program. Although
apprentice training provides better all-round
preparation, only a small percentage of electroplaters have been trained this way.
The planned program for apprentices includes
a combination of on-the-job training and related
classroom instruction in the properties of metals,
chemistry, and electricity as applied to plating.
The apprentice does progressively more difficult
work as his skill and knowledge increase. By the
third or fourth year, he determines cleaning
methods, does plating without supervision, makes
solutions, examines plating results, and supervises
helpers. After 3 or 4 years of an apprenticeship
program or general work experience, the worker
usually becomes a fully qualified plater. From
this position, he may qualify as a foreman.
High school and vocational school courses in
chemistry, electricity, physics, mathematics, and
blueprint reading will prove helpful to young
persons interested in becoming master electro­
platers. Some colleges, technical institutes, and
vocational high schools offer 1- to 2-year courses
in the principles and practices of electroplating.
In addition to the training offered by these
schools, many branches of the American Elec­
troplaters Society conduct basic courses in the
fundamentals of electroplating. The increasing
complexity of the plating process and the greater
use of precision plating will require platers with
a higher degree of technical training in the future.

Employment Outlook
The number of electroplaters is expected to
increase slightly during the 1960’s and in the
longer run. In addition to new job openings
resulting from the growth of the occupation, a



small number of vacancies will result from the
need to replace experienced electroplaters who
retire, die, or transfer to other lines of work.
Continuing mechanization of the electroplating
process* will tend to limit employment growth in
this occupation. However, it is expected that this
trend will be more than offset by the longrun
expansion in the machinery and metalworking
industries, and the broader application of the
electroplating process brought about by recent
developments in the use of aluminum, other
metals, and metal alloys.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Wage rates of skilled electroplaters ranged
from about $1.60 to $3 an hour in late 1962, as
indicated by examination of a number of union
contracts and information from a limited number
of employers. During a worker’s period of
apprenticeship or on-the-job training, his wage
rate usually starts at 60 to 70 percent of a skilled
worker’s rate and progresses to the full rate by
the end of his training period. In almost all
plants, workers are paid shift premiums for
working at night.
Plating work involves some hazards because
acid, alkaline, or poisonous solutions are used.
Humidity and odor are also problems in electro-

Gasoline Service

plating plants. However, most plants have
installed systems of ventilation and other safety
devices which have considerably reduced the
occupational hazards. Protective clothing and
boots provide additional protection. Mechanical
devices are generally used to handle most of the
lifting required, but at times the worker must
lift and carry objects weighing up to 100 pounds.
Some platers are members of the Metal Pol­
ishers, Buffers, Platers and Helpers International
Union. Other platers have been organized by the
International Union, United Automobile, Aero­
space and Agricultural Implement Workers of
America, and the International Association of
Machinists. Some of the labor-management con­
tracts covering electroplaters provide health in­
surance and other benefits.

Where To Go for More Information
For educational information concerning electro­
plating and other metal finishing methods, write
American Electroplaters Society, Inc.,
445 Broad St., Newark, N.J., 07102.

For information on job opportunities, training,
and other questions, write t o :
National Association of Metal Finishers,
11 Park St., Montclair, N.J., 07042.

ation Attendants

(D.O.T. 7-60.500)

Nature of Work
Each of the 73 million motor vehicles in the
United States, at one time or another, is serviced
in a gasoline service station. When a car or truck
is driven into the station, the service station
attendant is usually the one who greets the cus­
tomer and inquires about his needs. The attend­
ant may perform a variety of services for the
customer or his vehicle, ranging from merely
directing the customer to a street address to
making a minor repair on the vehicle. A few
attendants, called mechanic-attendants, make
more difficult automobile repairs.
When servicing a car, the attendant pumps
gasoline, cleans the windshield, checks the water
level in the car’s radiator and battery, and the

oil level in the car’s engine, and in the automatic
transmission if it has one. He performs preven­
tive maintenance by examining parts of the car
for excessive wear. In addition, if the customer
requests, the attendant checks tires for correct air
pressure. Also, the service station attendant sells
automobile tires, batteries, light bulbs, and acces­
sories such as seat covers, windshield wiper
blades, and mirrors. When a customer pays his
bill, the attendant makes change, or prepares a
charge slip if the customer uses a credit card.
In small stations particularly, he may install
accessories as well as perform minor maintenance
and repair work, such as lubrication, rotating
tires, repairing tires, or replacing a muffler.
Before and after doing this work, the attendant


service station managers and owners who may do
work similar to that done by attendants. A few
thousand additional attendants were employed in
garages, parking lots, motels, and other places
where gasoline, oil, and motor vehicle accessories
were sold.
Because motor vehicles are used throughout the
Nation, gasoline service station attendants are
employed in every section of the country, in the
largest cities and the smallest towns. About 40
percent of gasoline service station attendants are
employed in the seven States which have the
largest numbers of motor vehicles: California,
New York, Texas, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois,
and Michigan.
T ra in in g , O ther Q u a lifica tio n s, a n d A d v a n ce m e n t

may drive the customer’s car between a conveni­
ent parking place and the service area. He may
also keep the service areas, building, and rest­
rooms clean and neat. In some stations the attend­
ant helps the station manager take inventory,
set up displays, and perform other duties associ­
ated with the running of a small business.
I f a gasoline station provides emergency road
service, the attendant may drive a tow truck to a
stalled car and change a flat tire or make other
minor repairs needed to get the customer on his
way again. I f more extensive repairs are needed,
he tows the vehicle back to the service station.
In doing maintenance and repair work, gasoline
service station attendants use different kinds of
tools and equipment. These are usually simple
handtools, such as screwdrivers, pliers, and
wrenches. However, power tools and more com­
plex equipment, such as motor analyzers and
wheel alinement machines, are frequently used.
W here E m p lo ye d

An estimated 320,000 full-time service station
attendants were employed in gasoline service
stations in early 1963. More than half were
employed in stations that had one to five workers.
Several thousand additional people worked part
time as service station attendants. In addition to
attendants, there were about 200,000 gasoline

Employers prefer high school graduates
for jobs as gasoline service station attend­
ant, although men with less education are hired.
A high school education is generally required,
however, in order to qualify for service station
attendant training programs conducted by oil
companies, or to advance to positions such as
automobile mechanic or gasoline service station
An applicant for a job as a gasoline service
station attendant must have some sales ability,
a driver’s license, and an understanding o f how
an automobile works. He should be friendly and
able to speak well, present a generally neat
appearance, and have self-confidence. He should
know simple arithmetic so that he can make
change quickly and accurately and help keep
business records. An applicant should be
acquainted with local roads, highways, and
points of interest in order to be able to direct
Gasoline service station attendants usually are
trained on the job, although there are some for­
mal training programs. Attendants who are
trained on the job are first given relatively sim­
ple work assignments. They may be required to
keep the station clean; do simple automobile
maintenance such as washing cars, rotating or
repairing tires, and pumping gasoline; and make
themselves otherwise generally useful. Grad­
ually, the attendant progresses to the more
advanced work such as helping to keep station

records, making sales, writing credit tickets, and
installing accessories on cars. It usually takes
several months for a gasoline service station
attendant to become fully qualified.
Formal training programs for young people
who want to do gasoline service station work are
offered in many high schools around the country.
In this curriculum, known as distributive educa­
tion, students spend their last 2 years taking
business education courses (such as merchandis­
ing and commercial law and other high school
courses) as well as working part time in a gasoline
service station where they receive instruction and
supervision in all phases of service station work.
Vocational education agencies, in cooperation
with local offices of the U.S. Employment Service,
conduct training programs in many parts of the
country for young men who want to become gaso­
line service station mechanic-attendants. These
particular programs, which last up to a year,
emphasize the maintenance and repair duties of
the occupation so that an attendant will be able
to make more difficult automobile repairs, as well
as sell gasoline, oil, and automobile accessories.
Most major oil companies conduct formal train­
ing programs for service station managers. How­
ever, a few attendants are also enrolled in these
programs. The programs usually last from 2 to
8 weeks and emphasize subjects such as simple
automobile repairs, salesmanship, and business
A gasoline service station attendant with busi­
ness management capabilities may advance to
station manager. Other attendants may obtain
additional training and become automobile
mechanics. With experience, many station man­
agers and automobile mechanics go into business
for themselves by leasing a station from an oil
company, as is most common, or buying their own
service station. Some service station attendants
and managers advance to positions such as
salesman or district manager with oil companies.

Employment Outlook
Employment of gasoline service station attend­
ants is likely to increase rapidly throughout the
remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer run,
with several thousand job opportunities occurring
each year. In addition, many thousands of job


openings in this large occupation will result from
the need to replace attendants who transfer to
other fields of work, are promoted, retire, or die.
Deaths and retirements alone may account for
5,000 to 6,000 job opportunities each year for new
Employment of service station attendants is
expected to increase for several reasons. The
number of motor vehicles, which increased by
about 50 percent between 1952 and 1962, is
expected to rise by about a third in the next
10 years, because of growing population, income,
and multiple car ownership, and the continuing
movement to the suburbs. Also, greater use is
expected to be made of cars as families have more
leisure time to visit national parks and other
points of interest, and as roads continue to
improve. These factors are expected to result in
increased use of gasoline and other service sta­
tion products and, consequently, in the employ­
ment of a larger number of gasoline service station
More attendants may also be needed to perform
additional maintenance on newer, more complex
cars. For example, cars equipped with devices
that reduce exhaust fumes must be serviced
periodically. On the other hand, the increased
number of cars which require oil changes and
lubrication less frequently will partially offset
the servicing requirements of additional, more
complex vehicles.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Hourly earnings of gasoline service station
attendants vary considerably in different parts of
the country and in different size service stations.
Hourly earnings are generally higher in large
gasoline stations located in metropolitan areas
in the West than in stations elsewhere. About
half of all gasoline service station attendants had
straight-time average hourly earnings between
$1 and $1.60 in mid-1961. However, attendants
employed in a few large cities earned over $2 an
In addition to their hourly rates, many service
station attendants are paid commissions based on
the value of products and services they sell. Most
attendants work more than 40 hours per week,
with many working more than 49 hours. They



frequently work nights, weekends, and holidays.
Average weekly earning for full-time attendants
was about $70 in mid-1961.
In many stations, employers provide attendants
with fringe benefits such as accident and health
insurance and paid vacations.
Some high school and college students have
been able to work their way through school by
working as gasoline service station attendants
after school, and on vacations and holidays. Some
workers also supplement their income from regu­
lar jobs by working part time as attendants.
Attendants in many gasoline service stations
are required to wear uniforms. Some employers
furnish the uniforms and pay the cost of their
cleaning; others require the attendant to meet
these expenses.

A gasoline service station attendant works out
of doors in all kinds of weather. He must be in
good physical condition because he does con­
siderable lifting and stooping and spends much
time on his feet. Possible injuries include cuts
from sharp tools and burns from hot engines.
The attendant frequently gets dirty because he
handles oil and grease and works with greasy
tools and around dirty cars. For many attendants,
however, the opportunity to meet new people and
the possibility of someday managing his own
service station more than offset these disad­
W here To G o fo r M ore Info rm ation
American Petroleum Institute, Marketing Division,
1271 Avenue of the Americas, New York, N.Y., 10020.

Jewelers and Jewelry Repairmen
(D.O .T. 4-71.010, .020, and .025)

N ature of W ork

Jewelers make rings, pins, necklaces, bracelets,
and other precious jewelry by hand. They fre­
quently use precious or semiprecious jewels or
synthetic stones and set them in gold, silver, or
platinum; they also create fine pieces o f jewelry,
using only these metals. Jewelers also repair
jewelry, make rings larger or smaller, reset
stones, and refashion old jewelry.
In making jewelry, they may follow their
own design or one by a specialist in design work.
The metal is formed to follow the design either
by melting and casting it or by using small hand
and machine tools such as drills, files, saws,
soldering irons, jewelers’ lathes, and flexible
shaft machines. Jewelers’ work is often very deli
cate and must be done with care and precision,
as the materials used are extremely expensive. An
eye loupe, or magnifying glass held over the eye,
is often necessary.
As a rule, jewelers specialize in making a par­
ticular kind of jewelry, or in a particular oper­
ation such as making models and tools for jew­
elry, or polishing or setting diamonds and other
stones. A few, after years of experience, become
all-round jewelers, capable of making and repair­
ing any kind of jewelry. Costume jewelry and
some kinds of precious jewelry are mass produced

Skilled jewelry worker sets a diamond

by factory workers using assembly-line methods.
However, highly skilled jewelers are needed to
make the models and tools for this large-scale

Many jewelers make and repair jewelry and
also have stores where they sell jewelry, watches,
and, often, other merchandise such as silverware,
china, and glassware. They may also do some
minor watch repairing. However, an increasing
number of the newer retail jewelry stores are
owned or operated by merchants who are not
jewelry craftsmen. When repair work is brought
to these merchants, the articles are sent to a
“ trade shop” specializing in this work.

Where Employed
Employment of jewelers and jewelry repairmen
was estimated at more than 25,000 in early 1963.
About half of these were salaried employees in
manufacturing establishments, retail stores, trade
shops, and wholesale establishments; the remain­
der were the proprietors of such establishments.
O f the salaried workers, less than half were
employed in shops manufacturing precious
jewelry, a few thousand worked in trade shops
or wholesale establishments, and the remainder
worked in retail stores, especially the larger
jewelry stores with a great volume of business in
precious jewelry and diamonds. Nearly half of
the proprietors were self-employed operators of
trade shops, more than a thousand were oper­
ating precious jewelry manufacturing plants, and
the remainder owned retail jewelry stores.
Although most small towns have at least one
store that sells and repairs jewelry, most of the
Nation’s 24,000 retail jewelry stores, as well as
the thousands of small trade shops that service
these stores, are in and near large cities. The
chief centers of precious jewelry manufacturing
are the New^ York City metropolitan area, fol­
lowed by the Providence, R.I., area. More than
three-fourths of all precious jewelry manufac­
turing plants and employment in the country are
in New York, Rhode Island, New Jersey, Massa­
chusetts, and Pennsylvania.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Young persons generally learn the jewelry
trade either by serving a formal apprenticeship
or through informal on-the-job training while
working for an experienced jeweler. Jewelry
repair, wdiich is usually less complicated than
jewelry making, can be learned in a short time


by individuals already trained in filing, sawing,
drilling, and other basic mechanical skills.
Courses in jewelry repair are sometimes given
in trade schools which teach watchmaking and
watch repairing.
Formal apprenticeship in this trade takes
from 3 to 4 years, depending on the type of train­
ing. For example, 3 years are required to become
a colored-stone setter and 4 years to qualify
as a diamond setter. Throughout the apprentice­
ship, training on the job is supplemented by trade
school instruction in design, quality-of precious
stones, the chemistry of metals, and other related
subjects. First work assignments may be to set
up work for soldering or to do simple soldering
or rough polishing. As apprentices gain experi­
ence, they advance to more difficult work. On
completion of the apprenticeship, they become
journeymen jewelers.
High school education is desirable for young
people seeking to enter the trade. Courses in
chemistry, physics, mechanical drawing, and art
are particularly useful. Personal qualifications
important for success in this field are mechani­
cal aptitude, finger and hand dexterity, and good
eyesight. Artistic ability is necessary for work
in jewelry design. For those planning to become
retail jewelers or open a trade shop or manufac­
turing establishment, the ability to deal with
people and manage a business is also important.
Because people in this trade work with precious
stones and metals, they must be bonded. Bonding
requires an investigation of one’s personal back­
ground for such traits as honesty, trustworthi­
ness, and respect for the law.
Jewelry manufacturing establishments in the
major production centers offer the best opportuni­
ties for a young person to acquire all-round skills,
even though the number of trainees accepted is
small. Trade shops also offer some training
opportunities, but their small size—many are
one- or two-man shops—restricts the number of
Young jewelers interested in going into business
for themselves will find it advantageous to first
work in an established retail jewelry store, trade
shop, or manufacturing plant. Persons planning
to open their own jewelry stores should expect
considerable competition in most parts of the
country and should be prepared to make a sub-



stantial financial investment. Retail jewelers who
can also repair watches will have an advantage
over those who can work on jewelry only, since
watch repair work is a substantial part of the
business of small jewelry stores, particularly in
the smaller towns. Talented and experienced
jewelers of recognized integrity can establish
their own trade shop or small manufacturing
shop with a more moderate financial investment.
The location of such shops would be limited to
areas with a large volume of jewelry business.
For manufacturing, this means the major produc­
tion centers. Trade shops have best chances for
success in the moderate size or larger cities where
there are many retail jewelry stores.

Employment Outlook
Relatively few job openings for skilled jewelers
and repairmen are expected to occur during the
remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer run.
The number of these skilled workers will show
little change from current levels. Demand for
precious jewelry will increase as incomes rise
and population expands. Sales of engagement
and wedding rings are expected to increase as the
large number of children born immediately after
World War II grow up and marry. Also, socalled fashion (better grade costume) jewelry,
produced by mass-production methods and requir­
ing relatively few skilled jewelers, is becoming
increasingly popular. Moreover, the smaller
jewelry stores seldom have enough jewelry repair
business to keep a jeweler fully employed. Hence,
more retail jewelry stores are contracting out their
jewelry repairs to trade shops in which a few
skilled jewelers, by working full time and with
more complete equipment, can service many retail
Several hundred job opportunities will occur
each year because o f the need to replace craftsmen
who die, retire, or transfer to other fields of work.
Openings that result from replacements will be
limited because the occupation is small and
jewelers traditionally work well beyond the nor­
mal retirement age, for as long as they retain
good eyesight and steady hands. Moreover,
people who are not trained in this craft are
replacing many of the retail jewelry store owners
and workers who die or retire.

Nevertheless, skilled all-round jewelers, espe­
cially those with artistic talent and mechanical
ability, will readily find employment. Specialized
craftsmen, such as stone setters or model makers,
will also have favorable employment prospects,
particularly in manufacturing shops. In the retail
jewelry field, most job opportunities will be avail­
able in the very large retail jewelry stores which
have enough business to justify keeping a staff
of trained jewelers and jewelry repairmen.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Jewelry repairmen employed in retail stores
started at about $80 a week in early 1963, while
experienced workers earned up to $200 weekly.
Self-employed jewelers in retail stores or trade
shops generally earn more, although there is much
geographic variation.
About half of the skilled jewelry workers
employed by precious jewelry manufacturers in
the New York City area are covered by union
management contracts between their employers
and the International Jewelry Workers’ Union.
One agreement covering about 1,600 jewelry
workers in manufacturing plants in New York
City provides the minimum hourly rates shown
in the following tabulation for inexperienced
workers (including apprentices) and for journey­
men in selected crafts, as of February 1, 1963,
1964, and 1965. Average hourly earnings for
journeymen, in February 1963, are also shown
in the tabulation.

O ccu p a tio n

Starting rate—all inexperienced
workers------ ------------------Journeyman’s rate:
Production jewelers..................
Jewelers—handmade work.......
Model makers_______________
Stone setting-----------------D iamond—production---Other stones—production..
Handmade work_________

A v er a g e
h o u rly
M in im u m h o u rly jo b rates
e a r n i n g s ---------------------------------------------- — -----------------F e b r u a ry F e b r u a r y F e b r u a ry F e b r u a ry

3.8 7
4 .1 3
3 .5 9



2 .4 0
2 .7 0
2 .9 0

2 .4 5
2 .8 5

2 .5 0
3 .0 0
3 .0 5

2 .9 0
2 .4 5
3 .0 5

3 .0 0
2.9 5
2 .5 0
3 .1 5

3 .0 0
2 .5 5
3 .2 5

Under this agreement, all inexperienced workers,
including apprentices, receive increases of 10 cents
an hour every 3 months until they reach the
minimum journeyman’s rate for their particular
job, which is considerably lower than average
hourly earnings in the trades. The very skilled
and competent workers earned far more than
these averages.



Skilled workers in the precious jewelry manu­
facturing union shops in the New York City
area have a 35-hour workweek and are paid time
and one-half for all work done before or after
the regular workday. Some workers may be
subject to unemployment during the post-Christ­
mas and post-Easter seasons when sales decline.
On the other hand, retail jewelers and jewelry
repairmen often work more than 35 hours, espe­

cially during the Christmas season and other
peak periods.
W here To G o fo r M ore In fo rm ation

Information on employment opportunities for
jewelers and jewelry repairmen in retail stores
and trade shops may be obtained from :
Retail Jewelers of America, Inc.,
711 14th St. N W , Washington, D.C., 20005.

Stationary Engineers
(D.O .T. 5-72.010)

N ature of W ork

Stationary engineers operate and maintain
equipment that is essential to generate power and
to heat, ventilate, humidify, dehumidify, and aircondition industrial plants and other buildings.
These workers are needed wherever large boilers,
diesel and steam engines, refrigeration and airconditioning machines, generators, motors, tur­
bines, pumps, compressors, and similar equip­
ment are used. They must operate and maintain
the equipment in accordance with State and
local laws since the safety of many people depend
upon its proper functioning.
The most important duty of the stationary
engineer is to constantly observe meters, gages,
and other instruments to determine the operating
condition of the equipment. He also records
information such as the amount of fuel used,
temperature and pressure of boilers, number of
pieces of equipment in use, hours of operation,
and repairs made. He must detect and identify
any trouble that develops, by analyzing the vari­
ous instrument readings and watching and listen­
ing to the machinery. He operates levers, throt­
tles, switches, valves, and other devices to regu­
late and control the machinery so that it works
efficiently. He must also regularly inspect the
equipment to make sure it is working properly.
Stationary engineers usually repair the equip­
ment they operate, using handtools of all kinds,
including precision tools. Common repairs per­
formed by these workers are resealing valves,
replacing gaskets, bearings, and belting, and
adjusting piston clearance. Occasionally, station­
ary engineers make mechanical changes so that

Stationary engineer adjusts pump

the equipment will operate more efficiently or
conform to the requirements of a different
The duties of stationary engineers depend on
the size of the establishment in which they work
and the type and capacity of the machinery for
which they are responsible, but the primary
responsibilities are very much the same for all
kinds of plants— safe and economical operation.
In a large plant, the chief stationary engineer
may have charge of the entire operation of



the boilerroom and direct the work of assistant
stationary engineers and other employees includ­
ing turbine operators, boiler operators, and airconditioning mechanics. Assistant stationary
engineers may be responsible for the operation
of all the equipment during a shift, or in charge
of a specific type of machinery such as refrig­
eration equipment. In relatively small plants,
only an engineer and a helper may be needed,
and the engineer, himself, may oil and clean the
equipment, grease moving parts, and clean boiler
tubes and walls.

Where Employed
In early 1963, more than 250,000 stationary
engineers were employed in a wide variety of
establishments, such as power stations, factories,
breweries, sewage and water-treatment plants,
office and apartment buildings, hotels, hospitals,
and schools. More than 35,000 of these workers
were employed by Federal, State, and local govern­
ments. The size of establishments in which the en­
gineers worked ranged from giant hydroelectric
plants and large public buildings to small indus­
trial plants. Most plants which operate on three
shifts employ from 4 to 8 stationary engineers, but
some have as many as 60. In many establishments,
only one engineer works on each shift.
Because stationary engineers work in so many
different kinds o f establishments and industries,
they are employed in all parts of the country.
Although some are employed in small towns and
in rural areas, most work in the more heavily
populated areas where large industrial and com­
mercial establishments are located. New York,
Texas, California, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Ohio,
New Jersey, and Michigan employ well over half
of these workers.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Many of the stationary engineers started as
helpers or craftsmen in other trades and acquired
their skills largely through informal on-the-job
experience. However, most training authorities
recommend formal apprenticeship as the most
desirable method for learning this occupation,
because of the increasing complexity of the

In selecting apprentices, most joint labormanagement apprenticeship committees prefer
young men between 18 and 25 years of age with
high school or trade school education, who have
received instruction in such subjects as algebra,
geometry, trigonometry, shop mathematics,
mechanical drawing, machine-shop practice,
physics, and chemistry. They also look for young
men with mechanical aptitude and manual
A stationary engineer apprenticeship cus­
tomarily lasts 4 years. Through on-the-job train­
ing, the apprentice learns to operate, maintain,
and repair stationary equipment, such as blow­
ers, generators, compressors, boilers, motors, and
air-conditioning and refrigeration machinery.
He is taught how to use a variety of hand and
machine tools, such as chisels, hammers, electric
grinders, lathes, and drill presses. He may also
learn to use precision-measuring instruments, such
as calipers and micrometers. In addition, he may
be taught how to move machinery by the use of
blocks, chain hoists, or other equipment. This
on-the-job training is supplemented by class­
room instruction and home study in such related
technical subjects as practical chemistry, ele­
mentary physics, blueprint reading, applied
electricity, and theory of refrigeration, air con­
ditioning, ventilation, and heating.
Persons who become stationary engineers
without going through a formal apprenticeship
program usually do so only after many years of
experience as assistants to licensed stationary
engineers in such occupations as boiler, refrig­
eration, or turbine operator. This practical
experience usually is supplemented by technical
or other school training or home study.
Eight States and more than 50 large and
medium-size cities require stationary engineers to
be licensed. About half of all stationary engineers
work in areas requiring at least one engineer to
be licensed in each establishment. Although
requirements for obtaining a license differ from
place to place, the following are usual: (1) The
applicant must be over 21 years of age; (2) he
must have resided in the State or locality in
which the examination is given for a specified
period of time; and (3) he must demonstrate that
he meets the experience requirements for the class
of license requested. A license is issued to appli­
cants who meet these requirements and pass an

examination which may be written, oral, or a
combination of both types.
There are generally several classes of stationary
engineer licenses; these specify the steam pressure
or horsepower of the equipment the engineer may
operate. The first-class license permits the station­
ary engineer to operate equipment of all types
and capacities without restriction. The lower
class licenses limit the capacity of the equipment
the engineer may operate. However, engineers
with lower class licenses may operate equipment
restricted by their license class, provided they are
under the supervision of a higher rated engineer
—usually one with a first-class license.
Stationary engineers advance to more respon­
sible jobs by being placed in charge of larger,
more powerful, or more varied equipment. Gen­
erally, the engineer advances to such jobs as he
obtains higher grade licenses. Advancement, how­
ever, is not automatic. For example, an engineer
with a first-class license may work for some time
as an assistant to another first-class engineer
before a vacancy requiring a first-class licensed
engineer occurs. In general, the broader the
knowledge he has about the operation, mainte­
nance, and repair of various types of equipment,
the better are his chances for advancement. Sta­
tionary engineers may also advance to jobs as
plant engineers and as building and plant super­

Employment Outlook
Employment of stationary engineers is expected
to increase by a few thousand each year during
the remainder of the 1960’s and early 1970’s. In
addition, it is estimated that about 7,000 new
workers will enter this large field each year dur­
ing the next 10 years, because of the need to
replace workers who retire or die. Transfers to
other fields of work also will create job openings
for new workers.
Employment in this occupation is expected to
rise mainly because of the continuing increase in
the use o f large stationary boilers and refrigera­
tion and air-conditioning equipment in factories,
powerplants, and others buildings. Other job op­
portunities for these engineers may arise because
of the continued growth of pipeline transportation
and saline water conversion. However, improved


efficiency from more powerful, automatic, and
more centralized equipment and better utilization
of workers may limit the growth in the employ­
ment of stationary engineers.
The increasing use of atomic energy to generate
power should not affect significantly the employ­
ment of stationary engineers. It is likely that
both the number and skill requirements of oper­
ating jobs (i.e., stationary engineer, boiler opera­
tor, turbine operator, etc.) in a nuclear plant will
be about the same as those in a new conventional

Earnings and Working Conditions
Average hourly earnings of all classes of sta­
tionary engineers in 1962 ranged from $2 in
Greenville, S.C., to $3.32 in the Newark and
Jersey City, N.J., area, according to wage surveys
by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of
Labor Statistics. Stationary engineers who are
in charge of a large boilerroom operation may
earn considerably more than the average; some of
these workers earn more than $180 a week.
Stationary engineers generally have steady
year-round employment. They usually work a
straight 8-hour day and 40 to 48 hours a week.
In plants or institutions that operate around the
clock, they may be assigned to any one o f three
shifts—often on a rotating basis—and to Sunday
and holiday work.
Many stationary engineers are employed in
plants which have union-employer contracts.
Most of these contracts provide benefits which
may include hospitalization, medical and surgi­
cal insurance, life insurance, sickness and acci­
dent insurance, and retirement pensions. Simi­
lar benefits may also be provided in plants which
do not have union-employer contracts. Among
the unions to which these workers belong are
the International Union of Operating Engineers
and the International Union, United Automo­
bile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement
Workers of America.
Most engine rooms, powerplants, or boiler
rooms where stationary engineers work are clean
and well-lighted. However, even under the most
favorable conditions, some stationary engineers
are exposed to high temperatures, dust, dirt,



contact with oil and grease, and odors from oil,
gas, coal, or smoke. In repair or maintenance
work, they may have to crawl inside a boiler and
work in a crouching or kneeling position to clean
or repair the interior.
Because stationary engineers often work around
boilers and electrical and mechanical equipment,
they must be alert to avoid burns, electric shock,
and injury from moving machinery. I f the equip­
ment is defective or is not operated correctly,
it may be dangerous to them and to other persons
in the vicinity. However, in recent years, modern

equipment and safety procedures have reduced
accidents greatly.

Where To Go for More Information
Further information on this occupation may be
secured from State or local licensing agencies.
Locals of the International Union of Operating
Engineers also may be an important source of
information. Additional information may be
obtained from :
International Union of Operating Engineers,
1125 17th St. N W , Washington, D.C., 20036.

Welders and Oxygen and Arc Cutters
Nature of Work
Welders join (weld) metals by applying intense
heat and, sometimes, pressure to the edges of the
metals in order to melt the edges and thus form
a permanent bond, with or without the use of
filler metal. Many o f the parts used in auto­
mobiles, airplanes, refrigerators, and thousands
of other products are joined in this way. W eld­
ing is also widely used to repair broken metal
There are more than 40 different welding
processes, most of which fall under 3 basic cate­
gories: arc, gas, and resistance welding. Arc
ladders (D.O.T. 4-85.020) perform their work
either by hand or machine methods. Gas welders
(D.O.T. 4-85.030) usually join metals by hand
operations, although they also may use automatic
and semiautomatic gas-welding equipment. Re­
sistance welding is mainly a machine process per­
formed by semiskilled resistance-welding oper­
ators (D.O.T. 6-85.010, .020, .030, 060, .100).
The principal duty of the welder using the
manual technique is to control the melting of the
metal edges by directing heat, either from
an electric arc or from a gas-welding torch, and
to add filler metal where necessary to complete
the joint. In one of the most commonly used of
the manual arc welding processes, the welder
obtains a suitable electrode and adjusts the elec­
tric current. The welder first “ strikes” an arc
(creates an electric circuit) by touching the
metal with the electrode. After the arc is made,
the welder guides the electrode at a suitable dis­

tance from the joint seams to be welded. The
intense heat caused by the arc melts the metal
seams and the electrode tip. The molten metal
from the electrode is deposited in the joint and
together w
rith the molten metal edges solidifies
to form a solid connection. During the past
decade or so, there has been a considerable
increase in the use o f arc welding processes
employing inert gas for shielding the weld area.
This type of welding was developed for joining
hard-to-weld metals such as aluminum, magne­
sium, stainless steel, and titanium. Many welders
are now specializing in this process.
In gas welding, the welder applies an intensely
hot flame (obtained from the combustion of a
mixture of fuel gas—most commonly acetylene
and oxygen) from a gas welding torch to the
metal edges. After the welder obtains the proper
types of welding rods and welding torch tips and
adjusts the regulators on the oxygen and acety­
lene cylinders, he lights his welding torch. He
then adjusts the oxygen and acetylene valves on
the torch to obtain the proper size and quality
of flame. The kind of flame selected depends
on the type of metal to be joined and the type of
joint to be made. The welder heats the metal
parts to be welded by directing the flame against
the metal until it begins to melt. He then applies
the welding rod to the molten metal to supply
additional metal for the weld.
Resistance-welding operators, unlike arc and
gas welders who use manual as well as machine
methods, operate machines that weld metal
parts by bringing them together under heat and



electrically or mechanically controlled machines
automatically follow the proper guideline.
Workers other than welders frequently use
welding in maintenance and repair work. For
example, the boilermaker, the structural-steel
worker, the machinist, and the plumber may at
times be required to weld.
W h ere Em p lo ye d

A rc welder joins flange to pipe

pressure. The operator adjusts the controls of
the machine for the desired electric current and
pressure, feeds and alines the work, and removes
it after the welding operation is completed.
Semiskilled oxygen cutters (D.O.T. 6-85.215,
.240) and arc cutters (D.O.T. 6-85.280), some­
times called flame or thermal cutters, commonly
use hand-guided torches to cut or trim metals.
In the oxygen-cutting process, for example, the
oxygen cutter directs a flame of oxygen and fuel
gas on the area to be cut until the metal begins
to melt. He then releases an additional stream
of oxygen which cuts the metal. The oxygen
cutter prepares for the cutting job by attaching
the proper torch tip for the particular job, con­
necting the torch to the gas and oxygen hoses,
and regulating the flow of gases into the torch
for the desired cutting flame. He then cuts
through the metal, manually guiding the torch
along previously marked lines or following a
pattern. He may mark guidelines on the metal by
following blueprints or other instructions. Arc
cutting differs from oxygen cutting because an
electric arc is used as the original source of heat.
However, as in oxygen cutting, an additional
stream of gas may be released in cutting the
Oxygen and arc cutters may also operate a
torch or torches mounted on a machine. These

In early 1963, an estimated 370,000 welders and
oxygen and arc cutters were employed through­
out the country. About three-fourths of these
workers were employed in manufacturing indus­
tries. O f these, about 70,000 worked in the auto­
mobile, shipbuilding, and aircraft industries.
Other manufacturing industries with large num­
bers of welders and oxygen and arc cutters were
fabricated metal products (55,000); primary
metals (28,000); and electrical machinery
(24,000). The remainder were widely distrib­
uted among other manufacturing industries.
O f the approximately 100,000 welders and
oxygen and arc cutters employed in nonmanu­
facturing industries, over 30,000 were employed
by construction firms; about 25,000 by establish­
ments performing miscellaneous repair services;
and the remainder were widely distributed among
other nonmanufacturing establishments.
The widespread use o f the welding and cutting
processes in American industry enables welders
and cutters to find jobs in every State. Most of
these jobs, however, are in the major metalwork­
ing areas, with more than 40 percent o f them con­
centrated in Pennsylvania, California, Ohio,
Michigan, and Illinois. Large numbers of weld­
ers and cutters are employed in Detroit, Chicago,
Philadelphia, Los Angeles, and other important
metalworking centers.
T ra in in g , O th e r Q u a lifica tio n s, a n d A d v a n ce m e n t

Skills of manual arc and gas welders, machine
resistance-welding operators, and oxygen and arc
cutters vary widely. Generally it takes several
years of training to become a skilled manual arc
or gas welder. Some skilled jobs may require a
knowledge o f blueprint reading, welding sym­
bols, properties o f metals, and electricity. Some
of the less skilled manual jobs can be learned
after a few months of on-the-job training.



Training requirements for the resistance­
welding operator’s job depend upon the particu­
lar type of equipment used; most o f these oper­
ators learn their work in a few weeks. Little skill
is required for most oxygen- and arc-cutting jobs
and, generally, they can be learned in a few weeks
of on-the-job training. However, the cutting of
some of the newer alloys requires a knowledge of
the properties of metals as well as greater skill
in cutting.
Welding and oxygen- and arc-cutting work
require manual dexterity, a steady hand, good
eye-hand coordination, and good eyesight.
Manual welders often learn their trade through
study of welding methods in public or private vo­
cational schools, followed by several years of job
experience. A formal apprenticeship generally is
not required for this occupation. However, a few
large companies offer apprenticeship programs for
welders. Also the U.S. Department of the Navy,
at several of its installations, conducts 4-year
welding apprenticeship programs for its civilian
Young persons entering the welding trade
often start with simple manual welding produc­
tion jobs where the type and thickness of metal,
as well as the position of the welding opera­
tion, rarely change. Occasionally, they are first
given jobs as oxygen or arc cutters and later
move into manual welding jobs. Some large com­
panies employ general helpers in maintenance
jobs who, if they show promise, may be given
opportunities to become welders. After serving
as a helper to an experienced welder, a young man
may be promoted to a semiskilled welding job
where he will usually perform repetitive work or
work which does not involve critical safety and
strength requirements. The work duties of the
semiskilled welder are primarily performed in
only one position (flat, vertical, horizontal, or
The class A or skilled, all-round welder should
be able to plan and lay out work from drawings,
blueprints, or other written specifications. He
should have a knowledge of the welding prop­
erties of steel, stainless steel, cast iron, bronze,
aluminum, nickel, and other metals and alloys.
He should be able also to determine the proper
sequence of work operations for each job and be
able to weld all types of joints, in flat, vertical,

horizontal, and overhead positions. Some skilled
manual welders are required to know both arc
and gas welding. These craftsmen are usually
called “ combination welders.”
The skilled
manual arc welder may specialize in one of the
many types of arc welding.
Before being assigned to work where the
strength of the weld is a highly critical factor,
welders may be required to pass a qualifying
examination. The test may be given by an em­
ployer, a municipal agency, a private agency
designated by local government inspection
authorities, or a naval facility. Certification tests
are also given to welders on some construction
jobs or to those who may be engaged in the
fabrication or repair of steam or other pressure
vessels where critical safety factors are involved.
In addition to certification, some localities require
welders to obtain a license before they can do
certain types of outside construction work. New
developments in some manufacturing industries
are increasing the skill requirements of welders.
This is particularly true in fields such as atomic
energy or missile manufacture, which have high
standards for the reliability of welds and require
more precise work.
With 2 years’ training at a vocational school
or technical institute, the skilled welder may
qualify as a welding technician. Generally,
workers in this small but growing occupation
interpret the engineers’ plans and instructions.
Occasionally, welders may be promoted to jobs
as inspectors wdiere they check welds for gen­
eral conformance with specifications and for
quality of workmanship. Welders also may
become foremen who supervise the work of other
welders. A small number of experienced, all­
round welders establish their own welding and
repair shops.

Employment Outlook
The number of welding jobs is expected to
increase moderately in the remainder of the 1960’s
and early 1970’s as a result of the generally favor­
able longrun outlook for metalworking industries
and the wider use of the welding process. In
addition, about 6,000 openings will occur each
year because of vacancies resulting from retire­
ments and deaths. Opportunites will also result
as some welders transfer to other lines of work.

Employment prospects for resistance welders,
who make up the largest single group of welders,
are expected to continue to be favorable because
o f the increased use of the machine resistance­
welding process in activities such as the manu­
facture of motor vehicles, aircraft and missiles,
and the production of light, streamlined railroad
cars. The use of faster and more highly automatic
welding machines, however, will slow down the
growth in the number of these welders.
Many more manual welders will be needed for
maintenance and repair work in the growing
metalworking industries. The number of manual
welders engaged in production work is expected
to increase in plants manufacturing structuralmetal products, such as metal doors, boilers, and
sheet-metal products. The construction industry
will need an increasing number of welders as the
use of welded steel structures expands.
The number of jobs for oxygen and arc cut­
ters is expected to rise somewhat during the years
ahead as the result of the general expansion of
metalworking activity. The increased use of
oxygen- and arc-cutting machines, however, will
tend to restrict the growth o f this occupation.

Earnings and Working Conditions
The earnings a welder can expect depends to a
great extent on the skill requirements of his job
and on the industry or activity in which he is
employed. Earnings of highly skilled manual
welders generally compare favorably with those
of other skilled metalworking occupations.
Machine welders, such as resistance welders, who
require little training, generally earn somewhat
less than skilled manual welders.
Average straight-time hourly earnings for
skilled (class A ) manual welders in machinery
manufacturing industries in 21 cities and metro­
politan areas in mid-1963 ranged from $2.27 to
$3.15, with the highest rates in San FranciscoOakland and New York City ($3.15). Semi­
skilled (class B) manual welders’ average hourly
earnings ranged from $1.84 to $2.74. Welders who
are covered by union contracts may earn consid­
erably more than these average earnings.
Many welders and cutters are union members.
Among the labor organizations which include
welders and cutters in their membership are


the International Association of Machinists; the
International Brotherhood of Boilermakers,
Iron Shipbuilders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and
Helpers; the International Union, United Auto­
mobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement
Workers of America; the United Association of
Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing
and Pipe Fitting Industry of the United States
and Canada; and the United Electrical, Radio
and Machine Workers o f America (Ind.). Labormanagement contracts which cover welders and
oxygen and arc cutters provide employees with
major benefit programs which may include paid
holidays and vacations, hospitalization, medical
and surgical insurance, life insurance, sickness
and accident insurance, and retirement pensions.
Welders and cutters are exposed to some
hazards in their work, but safety programs have
kept the injury rate relatively low. For example,
protective clothing, goggles, helmets with protec­
tive lenses, and other devices are provided for
the safety and protection of the welder. Although
lighting and ventilation are usually adequate,
welders occasionally work in the presence of toxic
gases and fumes generated by the melting o f some
metals. Welders are often in contact with rust,
grease, paint, and other elements found on the
surface of the metal parts to be welded. Opera­
tors of resistance-welding machines are largely
free from the hazards associated with hand weld­
ing. A clear eye shield or clear goggles generally
offer adequate protection to these operators.

Where To Go for More Information
The American Welding Society,
345 East 47th St., New York, N .Y., 10017.
International Association of Machinists,
1300 Connecticut Ave. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20036.
International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron
Shipbuilders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers,
8th at State Ave., Kansas City, Kans., 66101.
International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace
and Agricultural Implement Workers of America,
8000 East Jefferson Ave., Detroit, Mich., 48214.
United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices
of the Plumbing and Pipe Fitting Industry of the
United States and Canada,
901 Massachusetts Ave. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20001.
State Supervisor of Trade and Industrial Education
or the local Director of Vocational Education in
the State and/or city in which a person wishes to
receive training.

Some M ajor Industries and Their Occupations
America’s entry into the space age has caused
rapid growth in the aircraft, missile, and space­
craft field. By early 1963, about 1A million per­
sons were employed in private industry and
Federal agencies in the manufacture of aircraft,
missiles, and spacecraft. Many thousands of new
and interesting jobs have come into being, and
many more will be created during the remainder
of the 1960’s and in the longer run.
Generally known as the “ aerospace” industry,
this field is one o f the most rapidly changing in
the country today, with a future full of exciting
prospects and stimulating job opportunities.
Because its products are complex and changing,
the majority of its job openings are for workers
with a college education or a specialized skill.
Engineers, scientists, and technicians represent
a much larger percent of total employment
than in most other manufacturing industries, and
probably will account for an even higher per­
cent during the years ahead. Increases are
also expected in the number of skilled workers
employed, such as tool and die makers, skilled
assemblers and inspectors, welders, and various
types of mechanics. Employment opportunities
for semiskilled and unskilled workers, on the
other hand, are not expected to grow during the
next 10 to 15 years and may even decrease.

Nature and Location of the Industry
Aircraft, missiles, and spacecraft have the
same main components: A frame to hold and
support the rest of the vehicle, an engine to
propel the vehicle, and a guidance and control
system. A major difference is that missiles and
spacecraft can reach into space and attain speeds
many times the speed of sound, whereas aircraft
fly in the earth’s atmosphere and at slower
408 0 — 63------- 34

speeds. Another difference is that aircraft are
manned whereas missiles and most spacecraft are
not, although spacecraft for manned flights by
astronauts are also built.
Types of aircraft vary from small personal
planes, costing not much more than an auto­
mobile, to multimillion-dollar giant bombers and
supersonic fighters. Aircraft plants also produce
transport planes, helicopters, dirigibles, balloons,
and gliders. About three-fourths of aircraft pro­
duction in dollar value is manufactured for mili­
tary use; the rest is for commercial passenger
and freight traffic, private business and pleasure
use, and civilian instructional flying.
Missiles and spacecraft also vary greatly in the
purposes for which they are made, and in their
size and capabilities. Missiles are produced
chiefly for military use and generally carry
destructive warheads. Some can travel only a few
miles and are intended for such purposes as the
support of ground troops and defense against
low flying aircraft. Others, such as the Atlas,
Titan, and Minuteman, have intercontinental
ranges of 5,000 miles or more. Some missiles are
designed for launching from land or under­
ground sites, others for firing from aircraft, sub­
marines, or ships.
Spacecraft are sent aloft with a payload (use­
ful cargo) of instruments which can measure
and record conditions in space and transmit the
data to receiving stations on earth. Payloads in
manned spacecraft also include a cabin capsule
for astronauts. The first American space vehicles
had payloads weighing only 20-30 pounds or less;
currently being developed is the Saturn launch
vehicle which will be able to launch 120-ton payloads. Some space vehicles probe the space envir­
onment and then fall back to earth. Others are

put into orbit and become artificial satellites
around the earth, sun, or other celestial body.
Nearly all this country’s missiles and spacecraft
are built for the Air Force, Navy, Army, or the
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
(N A S A ).
Because the aerospace industry makes many
kinds of finished products, it uses many kinds of
engines, electronic systems, and other compon­
ents. Aircraft engines may be reciprocating
(piston), jet, or rocket. Missile engines may be
jet or rocket. Spacecraft are always rocket pow­
ered, because rockets are the most powerful type
o f engine and can operate in airless space
whereas other engine types need oxygen from the
air for combustion. Today’s rocket engines are
powered by chemical propellants, which may be
either liquid or solid. New sources o f rocket pro­
pulsion such as nuclear or electric energy may be
available in the future. Guidance, control, and
instrument-payload systems are largely electronic.
Because missiles and most spacecraft are un­
manned, they generally have more complex
guidance and control systems than aircraft.
An aircraft, missile, or spacecraft is manufac­
tured usually under the technical direction of a
prime contractor. He manages and coordinates
the entire project, subject to periodic inspections
by the Federal agency or the airline which
ordered the vehicle. His engineering depart­
ment prepares design, drawings, blueprints, and
other specifications. These go to the production
department, where planners work on the many
details regarding machines, materials, and oper­
ations needed to manufacture the vehicle in the
quantity required. Decisions must be made as
to what part of the production work the prime
contractor will do and what part will be
contracted to outside firms.
Special tools, dies, jigs, and fixtures must be
made to manufacture the vehicle. Many sheetmetal workers, machinists, machine tool opera­
tors, and other metal processors produce the
thousands of parts and components which go
into the craft. All parts and equipment must be
inspected and tested many times, both before
and after they are assembled, and all assembly
work must also be thoroughly inspected and
checked. Assemblers and installers are needed in
every stage o f the production process to fit


Electrical assembler installs wiring in jet fighter aircraft

together, hook up, and install systems and com­
ponents. After its final assembly, the vehicle
is checked out by a team o f mechanics, flight
tested if an aircraft, and then prepared for
Many subcontracts are awarded for the parts
and assembly work that go into the aircraft,
missile, or spacecraft. It is estimated, for exam­
ple, that about 50,000 subcontractors produce
components and other equipment for missiles and
that the average missile contains approximately
300.000 parts. The prime contractor may manu­
facture components o f the craft and also do the
final assembly.
Aerospace plants range in size from the large
factories o f major manufacturers, each with
thousands of employees, to the shops of small
subcontractors and suppliers with only a few
workers each. Jobs in aerospace work may be
found in practically every State, although
roughly one-third are concentrated in California.
Other States with large numbers of aerospace
jobs include, east of the Mississippi River, New
York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut,
Massachusetts, Ohio, Florida, and Maryland;
and, west of the Mississippi River, Washington,
Texas, Missouri, and Kansas.
An estimated 1.4 million people— about onefifth of them women— were working on aerospace
products in early 1963. About 500,000 of these
were producing missiles and spacecraft; nearly
500.000 were making aircraft, aircraft engines,


and propellers; and more than 200,000 worked in
the electronics field producing equipment for air­
craft, missiles, and spacecraft. The rest of the
1.4 million were civilian employees o f the Fed­
eral Government working in the aerospace field—
approximately 150,000 in the Department of
Defense, 27,000 in the National Aeronautics and
Space Administration, and a small number in a
few other agencies.
O ccu p a tio n s in A ircra ft, M issile , a n d
S p a c e cra ft M a n u fa ctu rin g

Workers with many different kinds o f educa­
tional backgrounds and job skills are needed to
design and manufacture aircraft, missiles, and
Engineers and scientists with
advanced university degrees, as well as plant
workers who can learn their jobs after a few
days or weeks o f training, are employed.
Occupational needs vary among establish­
ments in the industry, depending on the work
being done. Research and development labora­
tories employ mainly engineers, scientists, and
supporting technicians and craftsmen. These
laboratories are run by manufacturers, univer­
sities, independent research organizations, and
Government agencies such as the Air Force,
Navy, Army, and the National Aeronautics and
Space Administration. Factories engaged in
production, on the other hand, employ mostly
plant workers such as assemblers, inspectors, tool
and die makers, sheet-metal workers, machinists,
and machine tool operators.
Some of the more important jobs found in
aerospace-products manufacturing are described
below, under three major categories: professional
and technical occupations; administrative, cleri­
cal, and related occupations; and plant occupa­
tions. (Many o f the jobs in this industry are
found in other industries as well and are dis­
cussed in greater detail elsewhere in this
Handbook, in the sections covering individual
occupations. See index for page numbers.)
Professional and Technical Occupations. Before
production o f an aircraft, missile, or spacecraft
can begin, a design must be approved. This
requires many experiments and “ feasibility”
studies, to determine how well various design
possibilities meet the conditions under which the


vehicle will be operated. A scale model is made
from the approved design. It is tested in wind,
temperature, and shock tunnels, on ballistic
ranges, and in centrifuges where actual flight con­
ditions are simulated. The next stop is to develop
a full-size experimental model or prototype,
which is thoroughly tested in the air and on the
ground. I f test results are satisfactory, produc­
tion may begin. Many modifications in the craft
are normally made during the course of design
and development, and often even after produc­
tion has started.
The pace of discovery and change is so rapid
that much equipment becomes obsolete while
still in the experimental stage or soon after
being put into operation. Research and develop­
ment are vital in the industry, particularly in
the missile and spacecraft field. An intensive
effort is being made to develop aerospace vehicles
with greater speeds, ranges, and reliability;
engines with more power; and metals and plastics
with wider capabilities.
Increasing emphasis on research and develop­
ment makes the aerospace industry an important
and growing source of jobs for engineers, scien­
tists, and technicians. It is estimated that in early
1963 nearly one-fourth of all employees in plants

Courtesy of National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Scientists conduct high velocity impact test to determine potential
meteorite damage to space vehicles

making aerospace products were engineers, scien­
tists, and technicians; this is considerably more
than the percent o f such personnel in most other
manufacturing industries.
Many kinds of engineers and scientists are
employed in aerospace work. For example, over
30 different college degree fields are represented
among the engineers and scientists employed
by the National Aeronautics and Space Admini­
stration. Among the more important types of
engineers working in the industry are electronics,
electrical, aeronautical, chemical, nuclear, mechan­
ical, and industrial engineer. Some o f the types
o f scientists employed in the industry include
physicist, mathematician, chemist, metallurgist,
psychologist, physiologist, and astronomer. Aero­
space engineers and scientists work in a wide and
varied range of applied fields, such as materials
and structures, energy and power systems, fluid
and flight mechanics, measurement and control
systems, communications and data systems, life
sciences and systems, and space sciences.
Engineers and scientists are assisted by many
types of workers, such as draftsmen, mathematics
aids, laboratory technicians, electronics techni­
cians, tool designers, research mechanics, and
research electricians. They also work with pro­
duction planners (D.O.T. 0-68.50), who plan the
layout o f machinery, movement of materials, and
sequence of operations so that manufacturing
processes will flow efficiently from one step to the
next; and technical writers (D.O.T. 0-06.90) and
technical illustrators (D.O.T. 0-48.32), who pro­
duce technical manuals and other literature used
to describe the operation and maintenance of air
and space craft and their many parts.
Administrative, Clerical, and Related Occupa­
tions, Managerial and administrative jobs are
generally comparable with similar jobs elsewhere
in the economy, except that they are more closely
related to engineering than in many other indus­
tries, because of the importance of research and
development in the aerospace field. Personnel in
these jobs include executives, responsible for the
direction and supervision o f research and produc­
tion, and officials in departments such as sales,
purchasing, accounting, public relations, adver­
tising, and industrial relations. Many thousands
o f clerks, secretaries, stenographers, typists, tabu­


lating machine operators, and other office person­
nel are also employed.
Plant Occupations. About 55 percent of all
workers in the aircraft, missile, and spacecraft
field were employed in plant jobs in early 1963.
Plant jobs can be classified into the following
groups: Sheet-metal work; machining and tool
fabrication; other metal processing; assembly
and installation; inspecting and testing; flight
checkout; and materials handling, maintenance,
and custodial.
Sheet-metal occupations. Sheet-metal work­
ers shape parts from sheet metal by hand or
machine methods. When hand methods are used,
the worker shapes the part by pounding it with
a mallet and by bending, cutting, and punching
it with handtools. Machine methods involve the
use of power hammers and presses, saws, tube
benders, and drill presses. The all-round sheetmetal worker (D.O.T. 4-80.050 and .060) lays out
the sequence of operations on the basis of blue­
prints and other engineering information. He
then fabricates complicated metal shapes, using
handtools or machines. Less complex parts, as
well as those produced in large numbers, are
fabricated by less skilled sheet-metal workers or
workers who specialize in operating a single
machine. They have such titles as stretch press
operator (D.O.T. 6-88.627), power brake operator
(D.O.T. 6-94.207), power hammer operator
(D.O.T. 6-94.221), power shear operator (D.O.T.
6-88.664), punch press operator (D.O.T. 6-88.622),
profile cutting torch operator (D.O.T. 6-85.240).
Machining and tool fabrication occupations.
Another important group of workers engaged
in shaping and finishing metal parts with ma­
chine tools are machinists (D.O.T. 4-75.010 and
.120) and machine tool operators. The most
skilled of these are the all-round or general
machinists who can lay out the work and set up
and operate several types of machine tools. They
perform machining operations of a highly varied
and nonrepetitive nature. They are most fre­
quently employed in departments engaged in
experimental and prototype production.
Machine tool operators are employed in the
large-volume production of metal parts. They
generally specialize in the operation of a single
type of machine tool, such as a lathe, drill press,


or milling machine. The more skilled machine
tool operators are able to set up the work on a
machine and handle difficult and varied jobs.
The less skilled operators usually do more
repetitive work.
Machinists and machine tool operators rep­
resent a higher proportion of the work force
in engine and propeller plants, which are basi­
cally metalworking establishments, than in
plants performing the final assembly of air and
space vehicles. Among engine plants, those
manufacturing reciprocating engines do rela­
tively more machining and less sheet-metal work
than those producing jet or rocket engines.
Many of the plants in the aerospace industry
make a large proportion of the jigs, fixtures,
tools, and dies they use. Fabrication of these
items requires skilled metal-processing workers,
chiefly jig and -fixture Guilders (D.O.T. 5-17.060)
and tool and die makers (D.O.T. 4-76.010, .040,
and .210). Jig and fixture builders make the
work-holding and tool-guiding devices used in
production and assembly operations. On the
basis of information received from the engineer­
ing department, they plan the sequence of metal
machining operations involved in making a jig
and carry the job through to completion. Tool
and die makers make the cutting tools and fix­
tures used in machine tool operations and the
dies used in forging and punch press work.
They must be experts in the use of machine tools.
Other metal-processing occupations. Other
metalworkers, such as tube benders, riveters,
and welders are also employed. Tube benders
(D.O.T. 6-95.060) form tubings used for oil,
fuel, hydraulic, and electrical conduit lines.
Riveters (D.O.T. 6-95.080 and .081) and welders
(D.O.T. 4-85.020, .030, .040, and .063) join fabri­
cated parts by hand or machine riveting and by
electric arc, gas, or electric resistance welding.
Additional metal fabricating is performed by
skilled foundry workers such as patternmakers,
molders, and coremakers. Drop hammer opera­
tors and other forge shop workers are employed
in the forging departments.
Many aircraft, missile, and spacecraft parts
are chemically and heat treated during several
stages of their manufacture in order to clean,
change, or protect their surface or structural


condition. Sheet-metal parts are heat treated
to keep the metal soft and malleable while it is
being worked into the required shape. Many
processes, such as painting and plating, are used
on the surfaces of parts. Workers in these metal­
processing jobs have such titles as heat treater
(D.O.T. 4-87.020), painter (D.O.T. 5-16.940),
and plater (D.O.T. 4-74.010).
Assembly and installation occupations. As­
sembly and installation workers are a major occu­
pational group, employed in practically all plants
in the industry. Many work in factories pro­
ducing engines, electronic equipment, and
auxiliary components, but the majority are found
in plants which assemble air or space craft into
completed form. They perform such final
assembly work as the fitting together of major
subassemblies and the installing of major com­
ponents. In the case of aircraft, for example, this
work involves joining wings and tail to the fuse­
lage and installing the engine and auxiliary equip­
ment such as the fuel system and flight controls.
In the course of their duties, assemblers perform
such operations as riveting, drilling, filing,
bolting, soldering, cementing, and gluing.
A large proportion of assemblers are semi­
skilled workers doing repetitive work, but some
are skilled mechanics and installers. Many of
the latter perform diversified assembly or instal­
lation operations, and often work on experi­
mental, prototype, or special craft. They assemble,
take apart, inspect, and install complex mechani­
cal and electronic assemblies. They read blue­
prints and interpret other engineering specifi­
cations. They may be called final assemblers of
complete aircraft (D.O.T. 5-03.572), missile
assembly mechanics (temporary D.O.T. 5-03.599),
or rocket assembly mechanics (temporary D.O.T.
Some skilled assemblers are employed in
plants which produce relatively large numbers
of aircraft and missiles rather than a few experi­
mental types. These assemblers usually specialize
in one or more fields of work. They are often
assisted by less skilled assemblers who do the
more routine work. For example, a class A
armament assembler (D.O.T. 5-83.543) typically
does such work as assembling, installing, and
alining power turrets, weapons, gun cameras,

and related accessories. Lower rated armament
assemblers typically do such work as uncrating
and cleaning weapons, loading ammunition,
installing armor plate, and placing parts in jigs.
Power 'plant installers (D.O.T. 5-03.572), some­
times known as engine mechanics, install, aline,
and check the various types o f engines and
accessories. Skilled electrical assemblers (D.O.T.
97.910), sometimes called electricians, install,
hook up, and check major units in electrical
or radio systems. They are assisted by less
skilled assemblers, who do the more routine
installations and wire routings by following
standard wiring diagrams and charts. Assem­
blers also specialize in other systems, such as
plumbing, hydraulic, heating and ventilating,
and rigging and controls.
Inspecting and testing occupations. Because
aircraft, missiles, and spacecraft are extremely
complex, thousands of painstaking inspections
and tests must be made as each component and
part moves toward final assembly o f the whole
system. Inspections are made not only by em­
ployees of the manufacturers but also by civil­
ian employees o f Federal agencies which have
contracted for the equipment.
Some inspectors specialize in examining mate­
rials and equipment purchased from the out­
side, others inspect components during fabri­
cation and subassembly within their own plants,
while still others inspect completed craft after
their final assembly. Many inspection jobs require
highly skilled workers. On the other hand, some
tests are made by automatic equipment which
can be run by relatively unskilled persons. Such
equipment not only checks the component or
assembly under test but may also run simultane­
ous checks on itself.
Some o f the most skilled inspectors, especially
in final assembly plants, are outside production
inspectors (D.O.T. 4—
76.220). They examine
machined parts, subassemblies, and tools and dies
which have been ordered from other firms. They
also serve as liaison men between their own engi­
neering departments and supplying companies.
Other inspectors, frequently known as receiving
inspectors (D.O.T. 7-03.810), with less respon­
sibility than outside production inspectors, check
purchased materials and parts for conformity


Assembly mechanics install equipment in cabin capsules for
manned space exploration

with blueprints, armed services requirements, and
other established standards. They operate test­
ing equipment and must be familiar with specifi­
cations of the parts and materials purchased
from different sellers.
In the production department, machined parts
inspectors (D.O.T. 4—
78.671) determine, by the
use of precision testing instruments, whether or
not a part has been properly machined to con­
form to blueprint specifications. They may also
test for hardness and porosity and determine
the “ machineability” o f castings and forgings.
Fabrication inspectors (D.O.T. 5-03.812) are
generally skilled sheet-metal workers. They
inspect fabricated sheet-metal work and complex
parts which have required numerous fabricating
As the parts are fitted together, they undergo
numerous inspections by assembly inspectors
(D.O.T. 5-03.814:). These inspectors are em­
ployed, for the most part, in the later stages
of the assembly process. They usually inspect
complete major assemblies and installations, such
as fuselage, wing, and nose sections, to insure
their proper final fitting. They also check
the functioning o f such systems as hydraulics,
plumbing, and controls. Subassemblies are usu­
ally inspected by less skilled assembly inspectors.
Final testing must be especially rigorous with
missiles and most spacecraft since, unlike aircraft,
they have no human guidance aboard to correct



for improper working o f components which may
cause a target miss or other failure of the mission.
Flight checkout occupations. The job of
checking out an air or space craft before its
first flight requires a team of mechanics with
different levels and types of skills. Sometimes
the checking-out process involves making repairs
or returning the craft to the plant for repairs.
The chief mechanic or crew chief, who is the
most skilled worker of the team, is responsible
for the entire checking-out operation including
repair work. He usually directs the work of a
crew of mechanics, each of whom specializes in
one or more fields. For example, engine mechan­
ics specialize in checking out the power plant,
including the engine, propellers, and oil and
fuel systems. Engine mechanics use handtools,
testing equipment, and precision measuring
instruments. The electronics checkout men per­
form or supervise the final operational checkout
of such systems as radio, radar, automatic pilot,
fire control, and complete electronic guidance
systems. Other skilled workers may specialize in
checking out and repairing armament, instru­
ments, rigging and controls, plumbing, and
hydraulic systems. In some cases, less skilled
mechanics help conduct tests and make repairs.
Materials handling, maintenance, and cus­
todial occupations. Aerospace plants employ
large numbers of material handlers, such as
truckdrivers, crane operators, shipping clerks,
stock clerks, and tool crib attendants. Mainte­
nance workers, who keep equipment and buildings
in good operating condition and make changes
in the layout of the plant, include maintenance
mechanics, millwrights, electricians, carpenters,
plumbers, painters, and welders. Guards, fire­
men, and janitors make up a major portion of
the plant’s protective and custodial employees.


uates in many different degree fields may qualify
for professional jobs in the industry. Regard­
less o f his degree field, the undergraduate stu­
dent preparing for professional aerospace work
is well advised to get as solid a grounding as
possible in fundamental concepts and basic gen­
eral areas of engineering and science. Math­
ematics and physics courses are especially impor­
tant, since these sciences provide the necessary
language understood by the variety of engineers
and scientists working on any given project.
Training in the more concentrated fields of spe­
cialization which exist in aerospace work is gen­
erally received in graduate school or on the job.
An increasing number o f semiprofessional
workers, such as electronics technicians, engi­
neering aids, draftsmen, production planners,
and tool designers receive training for their jobs
through 2 years o f formal education in a tech­
nical institute or junior college. Others qualify
through several years o f diversified shop experi­
Training requirements for plant jobs vary
from a few days o f on-the-job instruction to
several years of formal apprenticeship. Appren­
ticeship programs develop craftsmen, such as
machinists, tool and die makers, sheet-metal
workers, patternmakers, aircraft mechanics, and
electricians. These programs vary in length from
3 to 5 years depending on the trade; during this
time, the apprentice handles work of progres­
sively increasing difficulty. Besides on-the-job
experience, he receives classroom instruction in
subjects related to his craft. Such instruction

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
A college degree in engineering or in one of
the sciences is usually the minimum require­
ment for engineering and scientific jobs in the
aerospace industry. A few workers may get
jobs as professional engineers without a college
degree, but only after years of semiprofessional
work experience and some college-level training.
Since many kinds of engineers and scientists
are employed in aerospace work, college grad­

Laboratory technicians record temperature, pressure, and other
conditions of simulated space flight

for a machinist apprentice, for example, would
include courses in blueprint reading, mechanical
drawing, shop mathematics, trade theory, physics,
safe working practices, and other subjects.
Many levels of skill are required for other
factory jobs. Workers with little or no previous
training or experience are hired for the less
skilled assembly jobs. On the other hand, skilled
assemblers may need 2 to 4 years of plant experi­
ence in addition to a high school or vocational
school education or its equivalent. Skilled assem­
blers must be able to read and interpret engi­
neering blueprints, schematic diagrams, and
production illustrations.
Skilled inspectors must have at least several
years of machine shop experience. They must
be able to install and use various kinds of testing
equipment and instruments, read blueprints and
other engineering specifications, and use shop
mathematics. New workers with little or no
experience in shop trades may also be hired and
trained for jobs requiring less skilled inspectors.
Mechanics who perform the final checkout of
air and space craft qualify for their jobs in
several ways. Many gain experience as mechan­
ics by working in earlier stages of the plant’s
production line, before final checkout of the
craft. Others receive all their training in check­
out work, or come from “ line maintenance” jobs
with commercial airlines.
Chief mechanics usually need 3 to 5 years
of experience in the manufacture of aircraft,
missiles, and spacecraft, including at least 1
year as a checkout mechanic. Specialized me­
chanics, working under the supervision of the
chief mechanic, are usually required to have at
least 2 years’ experience. Workers with less
experience serve as helpers or assistants and pick
up the mechanic’s skills on the job and through
plant training courses.
Because the manufacture of their complex and
rapidly changing products requires workers who
are highly trained and aware of new develop­
ments, the majority of aerospace plants support
some kind o f formal worker training. Instructions
o f this type supplements day-to-day job experi­
ence and helps workers advance more rapidly to
higher skills and better paid work. A survey of
some of the industry’s major producers showed
that many conduct educational and training


classes themselves, others pay tuition and related
costs for outside courses taken by their employ­
ees, and some do both. Some classes are held
during working hours, in which case trainees
are paid for class time, and other classes are
after working hours. Courses are available for
practically every occupational group, and cover
many skills and areas of knowledge. Examples
of subjects typically offered include blueprint
reading, drafting, welding, aircraft maintenance
and repair, electronic data processing, shop math­
ematics, supervisory practices, and safe working
practices. Most trainees take short-term courses
designed to meet immediate skill needs. Only a
relatively few employees are enrolled in long­
term programs scheduled to run for several
years, such as apprenticeship.

Employment Outlook
Thousands of employment opportunities are
expected to develop in the aerospace field during
the remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer
run. Many new jobs will be created by expand­
ing activity in the industry, and many others
will result from the need to replace workers who
transfer to other industries, retire, or die. Betirements and deaths alone will probably result in ap­
proximately 20,000 to 25,000 openings each year
during the next 10 to 15 years.
The industry’s future depends largely on Gov­
ernment spending. Unless the international sit­
uation changes significantly from that prevailing
in early 1963, Government expenditures for aero­
space products are expected to rise during the
years ahead.
The overall picture for aerospace activity dur­
ing the next 10 to 15 years is one of growth, but
this is not true for every segment of the indus­
try. Jobs in the spacecraft field will probably
continue to increase rapidly, because of factors
such as expected growth in the military space
program and the national effort to complete a
manned expedition to the moon by 1970. Employ­
ment in the production of missiles rose sharply
during the last few years of the 1950’s, but has
since leveled off and is expected to remain fairly
stable. Employment in aircraft manufacture will
probably fall somewhat. Many new jobs will be
created to produce electronic units for the indus­



try. Electronic systems and components are
major items of aerospace craft and their import­
ance in the industry is growing.
Expenditures for research and development
should continue to rise rapidly. Employment
opportunities will, therefore, be particularly fav­
orable for workers such as engineers, scientists,
draftsmen, electronics technicians, mathematics
aids, and research craftsmen. Many job open­
ings in these occupations will become available
not only in manufacturing concerns but also in
university laboratories, independent research
organizations, and Federal agencies such as the
Air Force, Navy, Army, and the National Aero­
nautics and Space Administration.
Many job openings will become available also
for skilled plant personnel, such as tool and die
makers, skilled assemblers and inspectors, and
maintenance craftsmen. Because of expected
continuance of the shift from volume production
of conventional items, chiefly aircraft, to custom
production of relatively small numbers o f many
diversified products, employment of semiskilled
and unskilled plant workers is not expected to
increase and may even decrease. Semiskilled and
unskilled workers are also more likely to be laid
off during production cutbacks than are skilled
workers and office personnel. Aerospace employ­
ment has fluctuated sharply in the past, owing
mainly to changes in the needs o f the industry’s
major customer—the Federal Government.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Plant workers’ earnings in the aerospace indus­
try are higher than those in most other manufac­
turing industries. In 1962, for example, produc­
tion workers in plants making aircraft and parts
earned an average of $120.25 a week or $2.87
an hour, while production workers in all manu­
facturing industries as a whole averaged $96.56
a week or $2.39 an hour. Production workers in
the Department o f Defense and other Federal
agencies receive wages equal to prevailing rates
paid for comparable jobs by local private
Information on earnings for professional and
technical workers in the aerospace field indicate
that they are higher than earnings for similar
work in most other industries. The relatively

favorable position of these workers is due
mainly to the recent rapid growth of research
and development activity on missiles and space­
craft, which has created an urgent need for wellqualified engineers, scientists, and technicians.
(General information on earnings of professional
and technical personnel may be found in the
sections on individual occupations in this Hand­
book. See index for page numbers.)
The following tabulation was developed from
examination of collective bargaining agreements
of a number of representative aerospace manu­
facturers. It indicates the approximate range
of hourly wage rates for selected occupations in
mid-1962. The ranges in the various jobs are
rather wide, partly because wages within an
occupation vary according to the worker’s skill
and experience and partly because wages differ
from plant to plant depending upon type of
plant, locality, and other factors.
Aircraft mechanics______________________
Electronics technicians_________________
Heat treaters___________________________
Inspectors and testers__________________
Jig and fixture builders_________________
Laboratory technicians_________________
Machine tool operators_________________
Maintenance craftsmen________________
Tool and die makers___________________


8 4 - 3.
3 5 - 3.
0 0 - 3.
9 4 - 3.
0 0 - 3.
6 1 - 3.
9 4 - 3.
0 0 - 3.
8 4 - 3.
0 7 - 2.
0 0 - 3.
8 4 - 3.


Fringe benefits are common in the industry.
Workers usually get 2 weeks of paid vacation
after 1 or 2 years of service, and 3 weeks after
10 or 12 years. They generally get 6 to 8 paid
holidays a year and 1 week of paid sick leave.
Other major benefits include life insurance;
medical, surgical, and hospital insurance; pay­
ments in case of accident and sickness; and
retirement pensions. Fringe benefits in Federal
aerospace employment are comparable with those
in the rest of the industry.
Most employees work in modern factory build­
ings which are clean, light, and airy. Some
work is done outdoors. Operations such as sheetmetal processing, riveting, and welding may be
relatively noisy, and some assemblers may: work
in cramped quarters. Aerospace plants are com­
paratively safe working places, with an injury-

frequency rate which in 1962 averaged only about
one-third that for manufacturing as a whole.
Most plant workers in the aerospace field are
union members. They are represented by several
unions, among them the International Associa­
tion of Machinists; the International Union,
United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural
Implement Workers of America; and the Inter­
national Union of Electrical, Eadio and Machine
Workers. Some craftsmen, guards, and truckdrivers belong to unions which represent their
specific occupational groups.


Where To Go for More Information
National Aeronautics and
Washington, D.C., 20546.



Aerospace Industries Association of America, Inc.,
1725 DeSales St. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20036.
International Association of Machinists,
1300 Connecticut Ave. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20036.
International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace
and Agricultural Implement Workers of America,
8000 East Jefferson Ave., Detroit, Mich., 48214.
International Union of Electrical, Radio and Machine
1126 16th St. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20036.

Well over a million workers are employed in
the factories that make clothing for the Nation’s
population. The apparel industry produces about
$70 worth of clothing annually for every man,
woman, and child.
The industry is an important source of jobs
for workers with widely different skills and inter­
ests. Some of the jobs in this industry can be
learned in a few weeks; others can be filled only
by persons who have had several years of experi­
ence or training.
Four out of five garment workers are women,
making this industry the Nation’s largest em­
ployer of women in manufacturing. Women work
mainly as sewing machine operators. Many
others work in jobs such as hand sewer, book­
keeper, and designer. Men usually predominate
in jobs such as cutter and marker.

Nature and Location of the Industry
More than 1.2 million men and women were
employed in the apparel industry in early 1963.
About 350,000 made women’s garments, such
as dresses, skirts, blouses, suits, and coats. A p ­
proximately 80,000 made clothing for girls and
children. About 120,000 produced tailored cloth­
ing (suits and coats) for men and boys. More
than 325,000 made men’s and boys’ shirts, slacks,
work clothes, separate trousers, nightwear, and
other furnishings. More than 35,000 produced
hats, caps, and millinery. About 120,000 pro­
duced undergarments for women and children.
Another 70,000 made fur goods and miscellaneous
apparel such as raincoats, gloves, and dressing
gowns. About 140,000 workers classified in the
apparel industry produced curtains and draperies.
Apparel factories usually are small; only a
handful employ more than a thousand people
each. The great majority of the tens of thou­
sands of apparel establishments in the United
States employ fewer than 100 workers each.
Plants that manufacture garments subject to
rapid style changes tend to be smaller than

plants that make standardized garments having
little or no style change.
The New York metropolitan area is the center
of the Nation’s apparel industry. It is the Na­
tion’s women’s apparel fashion center where
store buyers flock to its many showrooms and
where new styles are created by several thousand
designers. About 40 percent of all garment
plants and about 25 percent of the industry’s
workers are located in this area. The rest of
the workers are employed in many cities through­
out the United States; none of these other cities,
however, has more than 6 percent of the workers.
The major centers of the men’s tailored cloth­
ing industry are New York City, Philadelphia,
Chicago, Rochester, Baltimore, Boston, Cincin­
nati, Los Angeles-Long Beach, and St. Louis.
Jobs for workers who manufacture women’s
dresses, coats, and suits are concentrated in New
York City, Wilkes-Barre-Hazelton, Los AngelesLong Beach, Fall River, New Bedford, New­
ark, Jersey City, Chicago, Philadelphia, St.
Louis, Dallas, and Boston. Large numbers of
workers are employed in plants located through­
out the South and Southwest, many of them in
small communities. These plants generally man­
ufacture inexpensive items such as separate
trousers, work clothing, skirts, pajamas, and
children’s clothing.

Occupations in the Industry
The major operations in making apparel are:
Designing the garment, cutting the cloth, sew­
ing the pieces together, and pressing the assem­
bled garment. Generally, high-grade clothing
and style-oriented garments involve more hand­
work and fewer machine operations than cheaper
and more standardized garments. For example,
making men’s high-quality suits requires a great
amount of hand tailoring and pressing. Simi­
larly, much hand detailing goes into a highpriced woman’s fashionable cocktail dress. In
contrast, standardized garments such as men’s

undershirts, overalls, and work shirts are usually
sewn entirely by machine. To make the many
different types, styles, and grades of garments,
workers with various skills and educational back­
grounds are employed in the apparel industry.
Most apparel jobs are semiskilled and are
largely concentrated in sewing room occupa­
tions. Skilled apparel jobs are concentrated in
establishments making men’s and boys’ suits and
coats, and women’s dresses, suits, and coats, al­
though skilled jobs are found throughout the
apparel industry.
Designing Room Occupations. Typically, the
manufacturing process begins with the designer
(D.O.T. 0—
46.01) who creates original designs
for new types and styles of apparel. He may
get ideas for designs by visiting museums,
libraries, and major fashion centers in both the
United States and Europe. He makes sketches
of his designs and presents them to the man­
agement and sales staff o f his company for
approval. The sketches include information about
the type of fabric, trim, and color. The designer
makes an experimental garment in muslin from
approved sketches. He cuts, pins, sews, and
adjusts the muslin on a dress form or on a live
model until the garment matches his sketch.
In large manufacturing plants, a sample stitcher
(D.O.T. 4-26.202) or skilled all-round tailor
(D.O.T. 4-26.201) prepares these sample gar­
ments by following the designer’s sketch.
Since designing is a creative job, designers
usually work without close supervision, but they
must produce a satisfactory number of successful
styles during a season. A large garment manufac­
turer generally has one designer and several assist­
ants who often have specialized designing respon­
sibilities of their own. Most small plants and
plants making standardized garments do not
employ designers, but purchase readymade de­
signs or patterns.
When the sample garment has been approved,
it is sent to a patternmaker (D.O.T. 4-27.432)
who constructs a full-size master pattern. W ork­
ing closely with the designer, the patternmaker
translates the sketch or sample garment into
paper or fiberboard pattern pieces to be used
as guides for cutting fabric. In drawing and
cutting pattern pieces, the patternmaker must


make allowances for pleats, tucks, yokes, seams,
and shrinkage. In some shops, designers or all­
round tailors make patterns, whereas in other
shops the assistant designer performs the patternmaking tasks.
The master pattern serves as a guide for the
pattern grader (D.O.T. 4-27.431) who makes
a wide range of sizes in each garment style.
In a sense, the pattern grader is a specialized
draftsman. He measures the pieces that make
up the master pattern and modifies them to fit
all sizes. The pattern grader then draws an
outline of each revised pattern piece on fiberboard and cuts out the pieces by following the
outlines. After he completes a set of pattern
pieces for each garment size, he attaches a label
to identify the part and size of the garment.
Cutting Room Occupations. Workers in the cut­
ting room prepare cloth for sewing into articles
of wearing apparel. There are five basic opera­
tions in the cutting department: marking,
spreading, cutting, assembling, and ticketing.
In small shops, two or more of these operations
may be combined into a single job. Most jobs
in the cutting room are held by men.
In most plants, markers (D.O.T. 6-27.011)
trace the fiberboard pattern pieces on large
sheets of paper, making several carbon copies

Marker arranges pattern pieces on cloth to guide cutter


of these tracings. In plants that make men’s
and boys’ suits and coats, the pattern pieces are
traced with chalk directly on the cloth itself,
rather than on paper. In order to get the great­
est number o f cuttings from a given quantity of
cloth, markers arrange pattern pieces so that
there is just enough distance between them for
the cutter to work. Figured materials must be
marked in such a way that adjoining garment
parts will match when the garment is assembled.
The fabric that has been selected by the
designer to use with a particular garment style
is laid out on long tables by spreaders. Hand
spreaders (D.O.T. 6-27.016) lay out bolts of
cloth by hand, neatly piling the layers into
exact lengths on the cutting table. In large
plants, machine spreaders (D.O.T. 6-27.015) do
this work, using a machine which lays the cloth
by traveling back and forth over the table.
The job of a cutter (D.O.T. 6-27.054) is to
cut out the various garment pieces from the
layers o f cloth which are spread on the cutting
table. He follows the outline of the pattern on
the cloth with an electrically powered cutting
knife which cuts through all the layers at once.
Sometimes layers of cloth are as high as 9 inches.
The work of a cutter and a marker is frequently
combined into the single job of cutter-marker.

Cutter uses machine to cut garment parts

Other types of cutters are employed in shops
making high-quality garments. Hand cutters or
shapers (D.O.T. 4-27.043) trim and cut the
pieces for these garments to make them con­
form exactly to the original pattern. Some­
times cutters sit in sewing rooms so that they
can trim and shape garments as they advance
through sewing operations.
The pieces of cloth that have been cut out
are prepared for the sewing room by another
group of specialized workers. Assemblers, some­
times called handlers, (D.O.T. 6-27.137) bring
together and bundle garment pieces and acces­
sories (linings, tapes, and trimmings) needed to
make a complete garment. They sort the pieces
by matching color, size, and fabric design. In
addition, assemblers may mark locations for
pockets, buttonholes, buttons, and other trim­
mings with chalk or thread. They identify each
bundle with a ticket. The ticket is also used
to figure the earnings of workers who are paid
on the basis of the number o f pieces they produce.
The bundles are then routed to the various sec­
tions of the sewing room.
Sewing Room Occupations. Almost half o f all
clothing workers are sewers and stitchers. Most
of the employees in these jobs are women. Sew­
ers stitch garment cuttings together either by
machine or by hand. The quality and style of the
finished garment usually determine how much
handwork is involved. Generally, higher priced
clothing, such as suits and coats, require more
handwork than do standardized garments. In
the average plant, however, the work is broken
down into a large number of machine operations,
with some handwork when the garment nears
Sewing machine operators (D.O.T. 6-27.530
through .589) use power-driven sewing machines
which are generally used to stitch material to­
gether. These machines are usually heavier and
capable o f faster speeds than the sewing machines
found in the home. Special devices or attach­
ments that hold buttons, guide stitches, or fold
seams are often used. Some sewing machine oper­
ators specialize in a single operation such as
sewing shoulder seams, attaching cuffs to
sleeves, or hemming blouses. Others make gar­
ment sections such as pockets, collars, or sleeves.

Still others assemble these completed sections
and join them to the main parts of the garment.
Some sewing machine operators are classified
according to the type of machine they use, such
as single-needle sewing machine operator or
blind-stitch machine operator. Others are known
by the type o f work performed, such as collar
stitcher, sleeve finisher, or cuff tacker. (Further
discussion of Sewing Machine Operators is
included elsewhere in this Handbook. See index
for page numbers.)
Hand sewing is done on better quality or highly
styled dresses, suits, or coats to produce gar­
ments which are Superior in fit and drape.
Hand sewers (D.O.T. 4^27.070 through .119, 627.071, .074, .075, .082, and .098) use needle and
thread to perform various operations ranging
from simple sewing to complex stitching. Many
hand sewers specialize in a single operation
such as buttonhole making, lapel basting, or
lining stitching.
In a typical garment factory, bundles of cut
garment pieces move through the sewing depart­
ment where the garments take form as they pass
through a series of sewing operations. Each

Sewing machine operators are the largest group of apparel


operator performs one or two assigned tasks
on each piece in the bundle and then passes the
bundle to the next operator. Some plants employ
work distributors (D.O.T. 9-88.40), often called
floor boys or floor girls, who move garment pieces
from one sewing operation to another.
A t various stages of the sewing operations,
inspectors (D.O.T. 4-27,121) and checkers
(D.O.T. 6-27.120, .121, .125, and .126) examine
garments for proper workmanship. They mark
such defects as skipped stitches or bad seams,
which are repaired before passing the garments
on to the next sewing operation. Inspectors
sometimes make minor repairs. Thread trimmers
and cleaners (D.O.T. 6-27.122) remove loose
threads, basting stitches, and lint from garments.
Tailoring Occupations. Tailors (D.O.T. 4 26.101 and .201) and dressmakers (D.O.T. 4—
25.025 and .030) are skilled hand and machine
sewers who are able to perform all or most of
the sewing operations needed to make a gar­
ment, These skilled workers are usually em­
ployed in shops which specialize in making
better quality or styled dresses, suits, and coats.
Because their duties vary widely from shop to
shop and from one type of garment to another,
some tailors and dressmakers are more highly
skilled than others.
All-round tailors and dressmakers are able
to make a garment from start to finish by hand
or by machine. Some skilled tailors who are
employed in plants making men’s, women’s, and
children’s outer garments may make up sample
garments from the designer’s specifications. In
other plants, they may also perform the duties
of designer and patternmaker.
Head tailors are often known as “ quality men.”
They supervise all-round tailors and the machine
sewers to make certain that standards of work­
manship set by the shop are met and that gar­
ment parts which have imperfections are returned
to the operator for correction.
Bushelmen, or alteration tailors, repair defects
in finished garments that were rejected by the
inspector. They alter garment parts that have
not been sewn correctly, rearrange padding in
coats and suits, and do other sewing necessary
to correct defects.


Shop tailors perform specialized hand or ma­
chine sewing tasks required for making many
types of high quality garments. They may set
in sleeves by machine, hand-sew canvas linings
in suits and coats, stitch shoulder padding, or
baste collars to coat bodies. Shop tailors are
usually known by the type of work they do;
for example, there are coat basters, or sleeve
tailors. Although the work of shop tailors is
generally limited to one or two operations, some
shop tailors can do all-round tailoring because of
their training and experience. In some plants,
a skilled tailor may be responsible also for a
thorough final inspection of garments.
Pressing Occupations. The shape and appear­
ance o f the finished garment depend to a large
extent on the amount of pressing that is done
during and after sewing operations. Pressing
is particularly important in making high-quality
garments. For example, from time to time dur­
ing the sewing of suits, coats, and better quality
dresses, seams are pressed open in order to pro­
duce a better fitting and neater garment and
to make it easier to assemble the garment. In
the manufacture of lighter weight garments, on
the other hand, pressing is done only after com­
pletion of all the sewing operations.
Pressers (D.O.T. 7-57.501, .510, and .511) use
various types o f steam pressing machines or
hand irons to flatten seams and to shape gar­
ments parts and finished garments. Pressers may
specialize in one type of pressing or ironing.
For example, in a shirt factory, a collar pointer
(D.O.T. 6-27.211) operates a pressing machine

Pressers use hand irons to press seams and hems in dresses

that shapes and presses points of shirt collars;
in a necktie plant, a roller presser (D.O.T. 627.218) feeds neckties between heated rollers of
a roller press.
There are two basic types of pressers—underpressers and finish pressers. Underpressers spe­
cialize on particular garment parts, such as
collars, shoulders, seams, or pockets. Their
duties vary from simple smoothing of cloth and
flattening of seams to skillful shaping of gar­
ment parts. Finish pressers generally do final
pressing and ironing at the end of the sewing
operations. Their duties vary from operating
a machine which presses a dozen folded shirts
at a time to hand pressing delicate ruffles on
an evening gown.
Fur Shop Occupations. The apparel industry
includes plants that manufacture garments
made of fur. Because furs are expensive mate­
rials and difficult to work with, each operation
in making a fur garment requires skilled hand­
work by an experienced craftsman. Although
fur shops employ only about 10,000 workers
altogether, a large proportion of these workers
have special skills not found in plants that make
other types of apparel.
The most skilled job in a fur garment manu­
facturing plant is that o f a cutter who some­
times is also the foreman in the shop. A fur
cutter (D.O.T. 4-21.210) selects and matches
enough fur skins to make a single garment such
as a fur coat or jacket. He arranges and cuts
the skins on pattern pieces so that the choice
sections of fur are placed where they will show.
Following the sewing instruction given by the
cutter, fur machine operators (D.O.T. 6-21.110)
stitch these pelts together to form the major
garment sections. A fur nailer (D.O.T. 6-21.
210) wets the sewn garments sections, stretches
them by hand, and nails them on a board so
that they will cover the pattern. When the sec­
tions are dry, the nailer removes the nails and
trims the fur exactly along the outline of the
pattern. The fur machine operator then finishes
sewing the various sections together to make
the complete garment. Fur finishers (D.O.T. 4 21.110) sew in the lining, tape edges, make
pockets, and sew on buttons and loops.

Office, Sales, and Related Occupations. The
majority of the administrative positions in an
apparel plant are in the production department.
The production manager and his assistants plan
the flow of work, make up the work specifica­
tions, and supervise all the operations used to
make a finished garment.
Clerks, bookkeepers, stenographers, and other
office workers make up payrolls, prepare invoices,
keep records, and attend to other paperwork
required in this industry. Salesmen, purchas­
ing agents, models, credit managers, and account­
ants are among other types of workers in the
apparel industry. (Discussions of many of these
jobs can be found elsewhere in this Handbook.
See index for page numbers.)

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Training requirements for production (plant)
jobs in the apparel industry range from a few
days of on-the-job training to several years of
training and experience. The difference in train­
ing time needed before an employee can reach
his maximum speed and efficiency depends on
the type of job and the worker’s aptitude. Most
plant workers pick up their skills while working
as helpers or assistants to experienced workers.
Apprenticeship is infrequent and is limited
mainly to designing, cutting, or tailoring jobs.
Some private and public schools in garment
manufacturing centers offer instruction in occu­
pations such as designing, patternmaking, and
cutting as well as machine and hand sewing.
Physical requirements for most production
jobs in the apparel industry are not high, but
good eyesight and manual dexterity are essen­
tial. Many occupations are well suited for handi­
capped workers since the majority of the jobs
are performed while seated and require little
physical exertion. Older workers and women
workers also perform well in a variety of jobs.
Many workers in their fifties and sixties are
among the industry’s most skilled and produc­
tive. Women are employed in most of the occupa­
tions in this industry, although men hold most
of the cutting, tailoring, and pressing jobs.
Designers enter the industry in various ways.
Many receive their training by working on the
job with experienced designers, by advancing
from cutting or patternmaking jobs, or through


apprenticeship. Some designers have worked in
related fields such as designing textiles; others
have attended schools or colleges which offer
specialized training in design. There is an
increasing tendency for apparel firms to recruit
designers from colleges that offer specialized
training in design. Some young people with a
background in designing may take jobs as
designers with small firms and once their repu­
tations have been established, transfer to jobs
in larger, better paying firms. In large firms,
young people may start as assistant designers.
A designer should have artistic ability, includ­
ing a talent for sketching, a thorough knowledge
of fabrics, a keen sense of color, and the ability
to translate design ideas into a finished garment.
He should also be acquainted with garmentmaking
techniques so that he can make, or supervise others
in the making of, sample garments.
Most patternmakers pick up the skills of the
trade by working for several years as helpers
to experienced patternmakers. Pattern graders
and cutters are occasionally promoted to pat­
ternmaking jobs. Patternmakers must have the
ability to visualize from a sketch or model fur­
nished by the designer the size, shape, and num­
ber of pattern pieces required. Patternmakers
must also have a detailed understanding of how
garments are made as well as a knowledge of
body proportions. Like the designer, they must
also have a thorough knowledge of fabrics.
Pattern graders are usually selected from em­
ployees working in the cutting room or in other
plant jobs. Training in drafting is helpful since
much of the work requires the use of drafting
tools and techniques.
Most workers enter the cutting room by taking
jobs as assemblers, or bundlers. Patience and
the ability to match colors and patterns are
necessary qualifications for these jobs. Assem­
blers, or bundlers, may sometimes be promoted
to jobs such as spreader. Several years o f ex­
perience in the cutting room are required before
an employee can become a skilled marker or
cutter. A small number of the larger plants
have apprenticeship programs which usually
last 4 years and include training in spreading,
cutting, marking, and patternmaking.
Entry into beginning hand- or machine-sew­
ing jobs is relatively easy since there are few



restrictions regarding education, physical condi­
tion, age, or sex, though women hold most sew­
ing room jobs. Some previous training in sew­
ing operations is preferred, but many apparel
plants hire workers who have had no experience
in sewing. Training is generally informal and
received on the job. New workers usually start
by sewing straight seams, under the supervision
o f a section foreman or experienced worker.
Most sewing jobs require the ability to do
routine work rapidly. The same sewing opera­
tion is repeated on each identical garment
piece. Since almost all these workers are paid
on the basis of the number of pieces produced,
any clumsiness o f hand may reduce the worker’s
earnings. Good eyesight and ability to work at
a steady and fast pace are essential for both
hand- and machine-sewing jobs.
The average sewer has little opportunity for
promotion beyond section forelady, although
some sewers have worked their way up to the job
of production manager. Most sewers stay on the
same general type of operation throughout most,
of their working lives. Promotion is largely
from beginning sewing jobs to more skilled and
better paid sewing jobs in the same field.
Some tailors and dressmakers learn the trade
through apprenticeship and vocational training
in day or evening schools. Graduates from voca­
tional schools frequently are hired and given
additional training on the job. Training time
varies from the few months required to become
a shop tailor to the many years of experience
necessary to become an all-round tailor or dress­
maker. Generally, men are employed in tailoring
jobs and women in dressmaking jobs, but more
and more women are entering tailoring.
In establishments that make men’s and boys’
suits and coats, hand tailors and all-round tailors
must be able to do all the operations involved in
making a garment and also be familiar with the
firm’s quality standards. Much more training is
needed by these tailors than by the bushelmen,
whose work is restricted to the correction of
defects, or by the shop tailors, who are limited
to one or two sewing operations.
Fully qualified dressmakers in establishments
making women’s dresses, coats, or suits must be
able to do all the operations involved in making
a woman’s garment. Dressmakers working in
692-408 0— 63--- 35

establishments that custom-make women’s apparel
must be more skilled than those working in shops
that manufacture ready-to-wear apparel. The
most highly skilled dressmakers can produce a
garment from a designer’s specifications, and in
custom shops are responsible for its fit on a
In establishments manufacturing men’s and
boys’ suits and coats, a possible path of promo­
tion is from bushelman to all-round tailor to head
tailor. In some cases, all-round tailors with
artistic ability may advance to assistant designer
or designer. Supervisory jobs are often filled
by workers who were once all-round tailors.
Promotion for shop tailors is limited because of
the specialized nature of their job, although some
may have an opportunity to become section fore­
men or bushelmen. In women’s apparel, a pos­
sible path of promotion for a small number of
workers is from machine sewing to making simple
dress samples, to draping or fitting. Highly
skilled tailors and dressmakers may qualify for
jobs as fitter or alteration tailor in department
stores, clothing stores, and cleaning and dyeing
shops. Some tailors open their own tailoring
shops since the amount of capital needed for such
a business is low.
Pressers usually begin as underpressers work­
ing on simple seams and garment parts. This
job can be learned in a very short time. After
the pressers gain experience, they work on more
difficult operations and eventually may be pro­
moted to the job of finish presser. Pressing, like
tailoring, is one of the few needle trades in
which workers can find similar employment in
stores and in cleaning and dyeing shops. There
is some transferring back and forth between
pressing jobs inside and outside the apparel

Employment Outlook
The apparel industry will offer many thousands
of job opportunities for new workers annually
during the next 10 to 15 years. Although total
employment in the industry is expected to increase
only moderately above the more than 1.2 million
employed in early 1963, a considerable number of
opportunities for young people to enter the
apparel industry will occur because of the large

numbers o f experienced workers who will leave.
About 80 percent of needle trades’ workers are
women, and a large number o f women leave the
industry each year to marry or to raise families.
Also, because there are more older workers in this
industry than in many other industries, oppor­
tunities will arise for young people to replace
workers who retire or die.
Demand for apparel in the years ahead will
grow substantially and will be the major reason
for the rise in employment. The increased need
for apparel will be due mainly to rapidly
growing population, but other factors will also
be important. For example, the number of people
in their teens and early twenties will rise greatly
in the next decade, and these are the age groups
in which spending for apparel is greatest. The
trend toward more workers in clerical, sales, pro­
fessional, and other white-collar occupations will
increase the demand for apparel since these work­
ers spend more for apparel than other workers.
Increasing numbers of working women, particu­
larly those in secretarial and other office jobs that
require “ dressing up,” will stimulate apparel pur­
chases. Men, also, are buying more clothing that
is highly styled because they are becoming more
Most of the opportunities for employment will
be in sewing machine operator jobs because this
is the largest occupational group and because this
group is made up mostly of women. Some job
openings will also occur in tailoring occupations
in which a large proportion of the employees are
older workers.
Opportunities for jobs as tailors, dressmakers,
fitters, and other skilled occupations in the
apparel industry will continue to be mainly in
the metropolitan centers where plants manufac­
turing dresses, women’s suits and coats, or
men’s and boys’ suits and coats are located.
There will be a small number of new employment
opportunities in men’s clothing designing, pat­
ternmaking, and cutting room jobs. Job oppor­
tunities for women designers will continue to be
good. Most opportunites in this occupation will
arise from the need to replace women who leave
to marry or raise families.
The nature of the jobs in this industry will
remain about the same since it is much less


mechanized than most manufacturing industries.
However, some new and improved equipment that
is being introduced speeds production and reduces
the physical and skill requirements of certain
jobs. For example, new compressed-air pressing
machines which require less physical effort than
the older pressing machines make it possible to
employ more women in these jobs.

Earnings and Working Conditions
In 1962, average earnings of production work­
ers in the apparel industry were $60.62 a week or
$1.67 an hour, compared with $96.56 a week or
$2.39 an hour for those in all manufacturing
industries. Production workers in this industry
generally worked fewer hours per week than those
in manufacturing as a whole. Production workers
have much higher earnings in some kinds of gar­
ment factories than in others. For example, those
making women’s suits, coats, and skirts averaged
$78.31 a week in 1962 whereas those producing
men’s work clothing averaged $51.20 a week.
There is also a wide variation in earnings among
the different occupations in the apparel industry,
and the States in which garment factories are
located. The following tabulation gives estimated
average hourly earnings for selected jobs and
geographical areas in three segments of the
apparel industry in 1962:
E stim a ted average h o u rly
e a r n in g s
A u g u s t 1962

W o m en * s a n d m isses* coats an d s u its

A ll production workers.....................................
Cutters and markers (men and wom en)________
Pressers, hand (m en)------------------------ ---Pressers, hand (wom en)................ .................... .
Pressers, machine (men and w om en)___________
Sewers, hand (finishers) (men and w om en)_____
Sewing machine operators, single hand (tailor)
system (men and wom en).................. .................
Sewing machine operators, section system (almost
all w om en)---- ------------------- ------------

B a ltim o r e

N ew Y ork
C ity








M a y - J u n e 1962
W o r k cloth in g

A ll production workers_________
Cutters, machine (m en)...............
Pressers, finish, machine (women)....... ..........
Sewing machine operators (wom en)------------M e n ’ s an d b o y s * shirts ( ex c ep t w ork sh irts) and
n ig h tw ea r

A ll production workers__________________
Cutters, hand (m en)............................................
Cutters, machine (m en)......... ..............................
Pressers, finish, hand (wom en)..............................
Sewing machine operators (women)---------—

V ir g in ia

C a lifo rn ia



T en n essee

N ew Y ork





Because most production workers in this indus­
try are paid on the basis of the number of
pieces they produce, their total earnings depend
mainly upon speed as well as skill. Sewing
machine operators, hand sewers, and pressers
are generally paid on a piecework basis. Cutters
are paid either piecework rates or hourly wages,
depending upon the practice in the area or shop
in which they work. Most of the other workers,
including tailors, patternmakers, graders, inspec­
tors, and work distributors, are paid by the hour
or week.
In metropolitan areas, almost all apparel
employees work in shops that have labor-manage­
ment contracts. New employees in plants which
have these agreements are required to join
the union after 30 days of employment. These
agreements deal with such subjects as wages;
hours o f work; vacation and holiday pay;
seniority; health, insurance, and pension plans;
and other employment matters. Among the
unions to which apparel workers belong are
the Amalgamated Clothing Workers o f America
(A C W A ), International Ladies’ Garment Work­
ers’ Union (IL G W U ), and United Garment
Workers of America (U G W ). The ILG W U
sponsors vacation resorts for union members
and their families. Both the A C W A and the
ILG W U operate health centers for garment
workers in major producing areas.
Workers in the apparel industry can expect
to lose very little work time as a result of strikes
or other work stoppages because the industry
has had many years of peaceful labor-manage­
ment relations. However, workers making cer­
tain types of garments may have layoffs of sev­
eral weeks during slack seasons. Generally, such
layoffs occur more often in plants making sea­
sonal garments, such as women’s coats and suits,
than in plants producing standardized garments,
such as pajamas and men’s shirts, which are worn
all year long. In many plants, the available work
during slack periods is divided so that workers
can be assured of at least some earnings. Also,
more and more firms are diversifying the types
of apparel they make, which reduces seasonal
employment declines.
Old buildings, whose surroundings and facili­
ties may frequently leave much to be desired, con­

tinue to house most apparel establishments, espe­
cially those in metropolitan areas. Newly con­
structed plants usually have ample space, good
lighting, and air conditioning. Some of the new
plants have cafeterias, and health clinics with
a registered nurse on duty.
Most sewing jobs are performed while sitting
and are not physically strenuous. The working
pace is rapid because workers’ earnings depend
on their production. In addition, many tasks are
extremely monotonous. Serious accidents among
sewers are rare, although a sewer may occasion­
ally pierce a finger with a needle. On the other
hand, pressing may be strenuous work and
involves working with hot steam.
Working conditions in cutting and designing
rooms are pleasant. In manufacturing establish­
ments, designing and cutting are often performed
in a separate area away from the main sewing
and pressing operations. Jobs in designing and
cutting operations are more interesting and less
monotonous than most other apparel jobs. More­
over, since accuracy and skill as well as indi­
vidual talent and judgment are valued more than
speed in these jobs, the work pace is less rapid.

Where To Go for More Information
Information relating to vocational and high
schools that offer training in designing, tailor­
ing, and sewing may be obtained from the
Division of Vocational Education of the Depart­
ment of Education in the State capital.
Information concerning apprenticeships may
be obtained from the Apprenticeship Council of
the State Labor Department or the local office
of the U.S. Employment Service. Some local
Employment Service offices offer training courses
for sewing machine operators. Others give tests
to determine hand-eye coordination.
Information of a general nature may be
obtained from the following sources:
Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America,
15 Union Square, New York, N .Y., 10003.
Clothing Manufacturers Association of U.S.A.,
220 Fifth Ave., New York, N.Y., 10001.
International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union,
1710 Broadway, New York, N.Y., 10019.
United Garment Workers of America,
31 Union Square, New York, N.Y., 10003.

Continued growth in existing uses of atomic
energy and the development of new applications
will provide many thousands of job openings
for young people in the atomic energy field dur­
ing the remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer
run. Opportunities will be especially good for
professional and technical personnel and for
highly skilled craftsmen. In 1962, approximately
200,000 workers had jobs in a variety of atomic
energy activities. Large numbers of these workers
were employed in research and development work.
Others were engaged in activities such as the
manufacture of nuclear weapons and other
defense materials, the design and manufacture
of nuclear reactors, and the production of nuclear
fuels. Scientists, engineers, technicians, and
craftsmen account for a large proportion of
atomic energy workers.

Applications of Atomic Energy
Atomic energy is an enormous source of heat
and radiation which can be used in many impor­
tant ways for both peaceful and military purposes.
One use of this energy of great potential sig­
nificance is the production of commercial elec­
tricity using nuclear reactors as the heat source.
A nuclear reactor (chart 31) can be thought of as
an atomic furnace, although there is no fire or
combustion in the usual sense. Reactors are
already producing energy to generate electricity
which is fed into electric utility lines for public
consumption, and others are being built. Progress
is being made in the development of portable
nuclear power plants to provide electricity and
heat for buildings at remote installations.
Reactors are used to power submarines and sur­
face ships. Intensive research is in progress
toward developing nuclear propulsion systems
and auxiliary nuclear-electronic power devices for
space vehicles and missiles. Reactors built pri­
marily as radiation rather than heat sources are
used for many kinds of research and may be used,

for example, to initiate chemical reactions and to
produce radioisotopes.
Radioisotopes, once considered only byprod­
ucts of nuclear reactors, have become immensely
valuable as research tools in agriculture, medi­
cine, and industry and for use in industrial inspec­
tion and control devices. Their value lies in their
unique property of emitting radiation which can
alter materials and be detected even in minute
quantities by sensitive instruments.
One important use of radioisotopes is as
tracers. Radioisotopes can be placed in the blood
stream of men and animals, for example, and
their movements traced by instruments. In
medicine, this aids the physician in diagnosing
a patient’s illness. Tracers may also be used
to study such diverse processes as the assimila­
tion of fertilizer by plants and the wear on
automobile engine parts.
Radioisotopes are also used as high intensity
radiation sources to kill bacteria, to destroy
cancerous tissue, to sterilize insect pests, and to
develop better strains of plants. They are used
in radiography units (similar to X-ray machines)
to detect flaws in metal castings and welds. Radio­
isotope gages are used to measure and control,
automatically, the thickness of products manu­
factured in sheet form and the level of liquids
in closed containers.

How Atomic Energy Is Produced
Atomic energy, or more accurately nuclear
energy, may be produced through twT processes,
called fission and fusion. In fission, the nucleus
of an atom is split, thereby releasing energy in
the form of heat and radiation. In fusion, energy
is produced by combining the nuclei of two
atoms. The detonation of nuclear bombs is an
application of the explosive release of the enor­
mous energy created through the fission and
fusion processes. Xonweapon applications require
that release of this energy be carefully controlled


C H A R T 31


and regulated so that it proceeds at a manage­
able rate. Scientists have developed practical
methods of controlling the fission reaction, but
have not yet mastered control of the fusion (or
thermonuclear) reaction.
Controlled fission is produced in a nuclear
reactor. The reactor, being a kind of furnace,
needs fuel to operate. The principal source ma­
terial for reactor fuel is natural uranium, which
contains a small percent o f the readily fission­
able material, uranium TJ-235. Although natural
uranium may be used as reactor fuel, a more
concentrated fuel, called “ enriched uranium,” can
be made by separating the U-235 atoms from the
remaining atoms which are difficult to fission.
U-235 is the only naturally occurring material
that undergoes fission readily, but two manmade

fissionable materials (plutonium and uranium
U-233) can also be used as reactor fuel.
Fissionable fuel is placed in the nuclear reactor
in a particular arrangement with certain other
elements. The fuel will sustain a “ chain reaction”
—the continuous fissioning (or splitting) of the
nuclei o f atoms—resulting in the release of
energy in the form of heat and radiation. When
the fissionable atoms in the fuel split, they release
neutrons (so-called “ atomic bullets” ) which can
be made to split other fissionable atoms. These,
in turn, release additional neutrons which can
similarly split more atoms. This is how the fis­
sion process is maintained. The level o f the
chain reaction is carefully controlled, usually by
inserting special neutron-absorbing rods into the
fuel chamber, or “ core,” o f the reactor. In this

way, the rate of the fission reaction and of the
energy produced can be regulated or stopped
Thus, harnessed atomic energy is produced in
a nuclear reactor in the form of heat and radia­
tion. However, if reactors are to be used for
power, the heat must be removed from the reactor
and put to work. This is done by converting the
heat to electricity through the use of conventional
equipment. The major difference between nuclear
and conventional electric power stations is that
the energy needed to generate steam to drive tur­
bines comes from a nuclear reactor rather than
from a conventional steam-generating boiler
fueled with coal, gas?or oil.
During the fission process, neutrons and other
forms o f nuclear radiation are released. Nuclear
radiation, identifiable only by sensitive instru­
ments, can be ruinous to equipment and highly
dangerous to personnel. Therefore, special metals,
resistant to damage by radiation, are used in
reactors and great care is taken to protect per­
sonnel. For example, the nuclear reactor is housed
in a special container and surrounded by shielding
materials, such as concrete, water, and lead.
A valuable byproduct of reactor operation is
the production of radioisotopes. The major
method o f producing radioisotopes is to expose
stable atoms of various elements to the neutrons
emitted from the reactor core. Kadioisotopes can
also be produced by bombarding materials placed
in a particle accelerator (also known as an “ atom
smasher” ), a machine which accelerates elec­
trically charged particles to speeds of thousands
of miles per second.

Nature of the Atomic Energy Field
Many different kinds of research and indus­
trial activities are required for the production
and application of nuclear energy. These include
the mining, milling, and refining of uranium­
bearing ores; the production of nuclear fuels;
the manufacture o f nuclear reactors, reactor
components, and nuclear instruments; the pro­
duction o f special materials for use in reactors;
the designing, engineering, and construction of
nuclear facilities; the operation and maintenance
of nuclear reactors; the disposal o f radioactive
wastes; the processing and packaging of radio­


isotopes; the production of nuclear weapons; and
research and development work.
These activities are performed in plants in
many different industries, as well as in labora­
tories and other types of facilities. Much of this
work, such as ore mining and milling, manu­
facture of heat transfer equipment, and con­
struction o f facilities, differs little from similar
nonatomic energy work. Other activities, such
as manufacture o f the fuels needed to run
reactors, are unique to the atomic energy field.
The Federal Government supports most o f the
basic atomic energy activities. The U.S. Atomic
Energy Commission (A E C ) directs the Federal
Government’s atomic energy program and reg­
ulates the use of nuclear materials by private
organizations. Most of the A E C ’s work pro­
gram, including the operation of Commissionowned facilities, is contracted out to private
organizations. The AEC-owned facilities include
laboratories, uranium processing plants, nuclear
reactors, and weapon manufacturing plants. More
than half of all workers in the atomic energy
field are employed in these facilities. Private
firms in their own installations are engaged in
every type of atomic energy activity except
development and production of military weapons
and certain nuclear fuel processing operations.
A large amount of research and development
work is done in the atomic energy field. Much of
this work is carried on by the AEC-owned
research centers and by university and college
laboratories, other nonprofit institutions, and
industrial organizations under Commission con­
tracts. Some research in atomic energy is carried
on without financial assistance from the AEC.
Jobs in the atomic energy field are found in
every State, although employment is most heavily
concentrated in New Mexico, California, Ten­
nessee, Missouri, and Washington.

Occupations in the Atomic Energy Field
Engineers, scientists, technicians, and crafts­
men accounted for a large proportion of the
approximately 200,000 workers in the atomic
energy field in 1962. A higher proportion o f
professional and technical workers are in this
field than in most other fields of work, largely
because of the concentration on research and
development. Office personnel in administrative



and clerical jobs represent another large group.
Most of the remaining employment consists of
semiskilled and unskilled workers in production
work, and plant protection and other service
workers. The following tabulation shows the dis­
tribution of employment among major occupa­
tional groups as reported in a 1962 Bureau of
Labor Statistics survey covering about twothirds o f the estimated employment in the atomic
energy field. .(These percents would not necessar­
ily apply to atomic energy employment not covered
by the survey.)
P ercen t

Total employment__________________________
Administrative and other professional workers. _
Clerical and other office workers__________________
Skilled workers_____________________________________
All others___________________________________________


Although some engineers in the atomic energy
field are highly trained in nuclear technology,
engineers in all major engineering fields are
employed. Mechanical engineer is probably the
largest single engineering occupation, but large
numbers of electrical and electronics, chemical,
reactor, civil, and metallurgical engineers are also
employed. Many of these engineers do research
and development work, while others are engaged
in designing nuclear reactors, nuclear instru­
ments, and other equipment used in the atomic
energy field, and in the supervision of construc­
tion activities or the operation of production
Mainly because of the emphasis given to basic
and applied nuclear research, a large number of
scientists are employed by research laboratories
and other organizations engaged in atomic
energy work. Physicists and chemists predomi­
nate, but many types of scientists are included,
such as mathematicians, metallurgists, biological
scientists, and health physicists.
A large number of technicians are employed to
assist engineers and scientists in research and
development work and in the designing and test­
ing o f equipment and materials. These include
draftsmen; electronics, instrument, chemical, and
other engineering and physical science tech­
nicians; and radiation monitors.

Chemical process operator prepares nuclear fuel elements for

The atomic energy field employs many highly
skilled workers because o f the need to fabricate
special parts and equipment for use in experi­
mental and pilot work and the need for large
maintenance forces to care for the considerable
amount of complex equipment and machinery.
Machinery repairmen, millwrights, and all-round
machinists are employed extensively in most
atomic energy activities, as are electricians, car­
penters, plumbers, pipefitters, sheet-metal workers,
and instrument repairmen. A large number of
chemical process operators work in the produc­
tion of defense materials and reactor fuel
materials. The following tabulation shows the
occupational distribution o f skilled workers in
the atomic energy field in 1961, the latest year
for which such information is available.
P ercen t

Total skilled workers_______________________
Chemical process operators________________________
All-round machinists_______________________________
Machinery repairmen and millwrights____________
Plumbers and pipefitters__________________________
Instrument repairmen_____________________________
Tool and die makers_______________________________
Sheet-metal workers_______________________________
Instrument makers________________________________
Other skilled workers______________________________




Activities in the Atomic Energy Field
A brief description of some important atomic
energy activities and the types of workers
employed in them follows. In several of these
activities, such as uranium mining, the percent
distribution of employment by occupation is
similar to that in comparable nonatomic work.
Uranium Mining. The 4,300 workers employed
in over 1,000 uranium mines in 1962 had jobs
similar to those in the mining of other metallic
ores. Their jobs are largely concentrated in the
Colorado Plateau area of the Far West, in the
States of New Mexico, Wyoming, Utah, Colo­
rado, and Arizona. A relatively few mines ac­
count for the bulk of production and employ­
ment. Most workers in uranium mines are in
production jobs, such as miners and drillers in
underground mines, and truckdrivers, bulldozer
operators, and machine loaders in open pit mines.
A small proportion of the employees in uranium
mining are in professional jobs, such as mining
engineer and geologist.
Uranium Ore Milling. In uranium mills, metal­
lurgical and chemical processes are used to extract
uranium from mined ore. The basic steps included
are ore preparation (primarily crushing and
grinding), leaching to extract uranium, and
product recovery—operations similar to those
used in the milling of other metallic ores. The
24 uranium mills in operation in 1962, most of
them located in the Colorado Plateau, employed
more than 3,400 workers. These workers were
distributed among major occupational groups in
the following proportions:

three-fifths of the engineers
employed in these mills.



Uranium Refining and Enriching. Milled
uranium is chemically processed to remove im­
purities and then converted to metal or inter­
mediate chemical products for reactor fuel prep­
aration. Conventional chemical and metallurgi­
cal processes are used, but they must meet more
exacting standards than in most other indus­
tries. The output of refining plants may be
further processed to obtain enriched uranium.
Activity in this segment of the atomic energy
field is centered in Ohio, Tennessee, Kentucky,
Missouri, and Illinois. In 1962, a dozen plants
were engaged in refining and enriching uranium.
About 10,000 workers were employed, dis­
tributed among major occupational groups in the
following proportions:
P ercen t

Total employment_________________________
Engineers and scientists___________________________
Administrative and other professional workers___
Clerical and other office workers__________________
Skilled workers_____________________________________
Other workers______________________________________


Among skilled workers, the largest single
occupation was chemical operator in processing
operations. Maintenance craftsmen, particularly
in the highly automatic uranium enriching
plants, accounted for a large proportion of
skilled workers. Chemical engineers and chem­
ists accounted for about half of the engineers
and scientists employed in refining and enrich­
ing operations. Many of the technicians worked
in chemical analytical laboratories associated
with production processes.

P ercen t

Total employment__________________________
Engineers and scientists___________________________
Administrative and other professional workers___
Clerical and other office workers__________________
Skilled workers_____________________________________
Other workers______________________________________


More than a third of the skilled workers were
chemical process operators, and many skilled
machinery repairmen, millwrights, pipefitters,
carpenters, and electricians were also employed.
Chemists, chemical engineers, metallurgists, and
metallurgical engineers accounted for about

Reactor Manufacturing. Nearly 20,000 workers
are estimated to have been employed in 1962 in
the design and manufacture of nuclear reactors
and unique reactor components. Reactor manu­
facturers do extensive research and development
work on reactors and auxiliary equipment, design
the reactor, and generally fabricate some of the
intricate components, such as fuel elements, con­
trol rods, and reactor cores. Many reactor com­
ponents are similar to standard power equipment
and are purchased from plants manufacturing
such products.



About two-fifths of the employees in firms that
design and manufacture reactors are professional
and administrative workers. Engineers alone
represent about one-fourth of the employment,
with mechanical engineers and reactor engineers,
who are specialists in reactor technology, pre­
dominating. Among scientists, the largest group
are physicists, but many chemists, mathema­
ticians, and metallurgists are also employed.
Assisting these engineers and scientists are many
draftsmen, engineering aids, and physical science
Skilled workers are employed by reactor
manufacturers in experimental, production, and
maintenance work. All-round machinists and
sheet-metal workers account for a large propor­
tion of these craftsmen. Other craftsmen, such
as instrument makers, machinery repairmen,
instrument repairmen, and electricians, are also
employed. Reactor manufacturers employ nuclear
reactor operators to operate experimental and
test reactors.
Fuel elements and other unique components are
fabricated not only by reactor manufacturers but
in specialized plants as well. Many mechanical
and metallurgical engineers, technicians, and
chemical process operators are employed in these
Reactor Operation and Maintenance. More than
600 workers were engaged in the operation and
maintenance of nuclear reactors producing com­
mercial electricity in 1962. Principal types of
occupations found in the operation of a nuclear
power station are mechanical engineer, electrical
and electronics engineer, chemist, instrument tech­
nician, electronics technician, radiation monitor,
reactor operator, and other power plant oper­
ators and attendants. Among the employees
needed to maintain and repair reactors are
machinery repairmen, instrument repairmen,
electricians, and pipefitters.
Research and Development ~Facilities. Twenty
research and development laboratories and other
research facilities are owned by the Atomic
Energy Commission and are operated for the
AEC by colleges and universities and industrial
concerns. These facilities are major centers for
basic and applied nuclear research iu the physi­
cal, engineering, and life sciences and in the

development of nuclear reactors and other
nuclear equipment. In 1962, they employed nearly
43,000 workers, distributed among major occu­
pational groups in the following proportions:
P ercen t

Total employment__________________________
Administrative and other professional workers___
Clerical and other office workers__________________
Skilled workers_____________________________________
Other workers______________________________________


This occupational distribution indicates that
more than half of the employees in A E C research
and development facilities are engineers, scien­
tists, and supporting technicians. Among the
engineers and scientists are physicists, mechanical
engineers, electrical and electronics engineers,
chemists and chemical engineers, mathematicians,
reactor engineers, metallurgists and metallurgical
engineers, biological scientists, and health physic­
ists. Assisting scientists and engineers are many
physical science and engineering aids; draftsmen;
electronics, instrument, and biological techni­
cians; and radiation monitors.
Administrative and clerical workers together
account for another large proportion of employ­
ment. The skilled worker group includes large
numbers of all-round machinists, electricians,
machinery repairmen, and millwrights, as well as
substantial numbers of tool and die makers,
instrument makers, and pipefitters. Nuclear
reactor operators are employed to operate research
and test reactors and many service workers are
employed in plant protection and security
In addition to the research performed by the
AEC research and development facilities, addi­
tional atomic energy research is performed in
the privately owned research laboratories of edu­
cational institutions and other nonprofit institu­
tions, and of industrial concerns. Like the AEC
facilities, these laboratories employ a high pro­
portion of workers in scientific, engineering, and
other technical jobs.
Production of Nuclear Weapons and Other
Defense Materials. Nearly 41,000 workers were



employed in 1962 in establishments producing
nuclear weapons and weapon components,
plutonium, and other defense materials. These
workers were distributed among major occupa­
tional groups in the following proportions:
P ercen t

Total employment__________________________
Engineers and scientists___________________________
Administrative and other professional workers___
Clerical and other office workers__________________
Skilled workers_____________________________________
Other workers______________________________________


About 1 out of every 4 workers in these defense
production facilities is a skilled worker in a pro­
duction or maintenance job. Included among
these skilled workers are large numbers of
machinery repairmen and millwrights, chemical
process operators, all-round machinists, elec­
tricians, instrument repairmen, pipefitters, tool
and die makers, and instrument makers.
Among the large number of scientists and engi­
neers employed at these facilities are many
chemists, physicists, and mechanical, chemical,
and electrical and electronics engineers. Many
engineering and physical science aids, draftsmen,
radiation monitors, and electronics technicians
are employed to assist scientists and engineers.
Large numbers of chemical process operators,
nuclear reactor operators, and skilled craftsmen
are also employed.
Other Atomic Energy Activities. About 2,500
workers were employed in 1962 to produce special
materials such as beryllium, zirconium, and
hafnium for use in reactors. Nearly three-fifths
of these workers are in production, maintenance,
and service jobs. Chemical process operators, all­
round machinists, and machinery repairmen are
numerically important groups of skilled workers.
Among scientists and engineers, principal occu­
pations include metallurgist, metallurgical engi­
neer, chemist, and chemical engineer.
Many thousands of workers are engaged in
designing and constructing nuclear reactor hous­
ing, atomic energy laboratories, and reactor fuel
processing plants. Civil and mechanical engineers
and draftsmen are among those employed in the
design o f these facilities. Pipefitters, electricians,
carpenters, boilermakers, operating engineers, and
other building trades craftsmen are employed in
the construction o f these facilities.

About 2,500 workers were employed in 1962
by companies that manufacture reactor control
instrumentation, radiation detection and monitor­
ing devices, and other instruments for the atomic
energy field. Production of these instruments
involves work similar to that in instrument manu­
facturing in general. Among engineers and tech­
nicians, who represent a substantial proportion of
employment in such companies, numerically
important occupations include electrical and elec­
tronics engineer, mechanical engineer, electronics
technician, instrument technician, and draftsman.
A few companies, which employed approxi­
mately 1,000 workers in 1962, specialize in the
manufacture of particle accelerators—machines
which enable scientists to study the structure and
properties of the elementary particles that make
up the nucleus of an atom. Workers typically
employed in the design and manufacture of these
machines include electrical and electronics engi­
neers, mechanical engineers, physicists, drafts­
men, electronics technicians, and machinists.
Other workers in the atomic energy field in
1962 were engaged in such activities as process­
ing and packaging radioisotopes, manufacturing
radiography units and radiation gages, packaging
and disposing of radioactive wastes, and indus­
trial radiography. Among the workers in these
activities are engineers, chemists, biological tech­
nicians, radiographic equipment operators (radio­
graphers) remote handlers and packagers of
radioisotopes, and mechanics and other workers
who repair equipment containing radioisotopes.
Government Employment. The Atomic Energy
Commission, which directs the Federal Govern­
ment’s atomic energy program, employed nearly
6,900 workers in its national and field offices
in 1962. About 1,200 engineers and scientists
were employed by the Commission, including
personnel in nearly every major engineering
and scientific occupation, such as reactor, civil,
and electrical and electronics engineers, chemists,
health physicists, and physicists. Since the AEC
is primarily an administrative and regulatory
agency, approximately two-thirds of Commission
employees were in administrative and other pro­
fessional positions and in clerical and other office
jobs. This proportion of administrative and


clerical personnel is much larger than in most
other activities in the atomic energy field.
Another large group of A E C employees were
engaged in protective and security activities.
In addition to those employed by the Atomic
Energy Commission, a few thousand Government
employees are engaged in atomic energy work in
other Federal agencies and in health and labor
departments o f State and local governments.
Their duties involve atomic energy research and
application, and preparing and carrying out radi­
ation health and safety measures. Outside the
AEC, most of the scientists, engineers, and other
professional and supporting workers in atomic
energy work in Federal Government agencies
are employed by the Departments of Defense, the
Interior (Geological Survey), Agriculture, and
Health, Education, and Welfare, and by the
National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
The Department o f Health, Education, and W el­
fare, in cooperation with the AEC, aids States
in establishing measures to meet radiation health
hazard problems.
Unique Atomic Energy Occupations. Most of
the occupations discussed in the preceding sec­
tions are similar to those found in other indus­
trial activities, although they may have job titles
unique to the atomic energy field (such as nuclear
engineer, radiation chemist, and nuclear reactor
operator) and may require some specialized
knowledge of atomic energy. A detailed discussion
of the duties, training, and employment outlook
for most o f these occupations appears elsewhere
in this Handbook. (See index for page numbers.)
The health physics occupations, which are
unique to the atomic energy field, and some
other occupations that are unique in that they
require training in the handling and use of
radioactive materials or radiation-producing
equipment, are discussed briefly in the following
Health physicists (also called radiological
physicists) are concerned with the problem of
radiation safety for workers in atomic energy
installations and for people in surrounding
communities. They have the very responsible
job o f protecting individuals and property from
the hazards o f radiation by detecting radiation

and controlling exposures to it. These profes­
sional workers usually are assisted by radiation
monitors. In 1962, about 700 health physicists
were employed in radiation protection work,
research, or teaching.
Health physicists are responsible for planning
and organizing radiological health programs at
atomic energy facilities. For example, they set
up standards of inspection and establish proce­
dures for protecting employees and eliminating
radiological hazards. They supervise the inspec­
tion of work areas with potential radiation
hazards and prepare instructions covering safe
work procedures in these areas. Health physi­
cists also inspect shipments of equipment and
materials and radioactive waste disposal activi­
ties, to insure compliance with Government
standards and regulations. Another duty involves
the preparation of reports on radioactive con­
tamination, radiation levels, and radiation
Health physicists may also plan and supervise
training programs dealing with radiation haz­
ards and may advise public authorities on
methods of dealing with such hazards. In some
cases, they are employed on research projects
dealing with the effects of human exposure to
radiation and may develop procedures to be
followed in using radioactive materials. Finally,
they assist in the development of better methods
and equipment for the detection and control of
radiation hazards.
Radiation monitors (also called health-physics
technicians) generally work under the supervision
of health physicists. An estimated 1,500 radiation
monitors were employed in the atomic energy
field in 1962. They use special instruments to
monitor (check) work areas, tools, and equip­
ment to detect radioactive contamination. They
monitor incoming and outgoing shipments of
equipment and materials for radiation levels and
contamination. Soil, water, and air samples are
taken to determine radiation levels. Monitors
may also collect and analyze radiation monitor­
ing equipment worn by workers, such as film
badges and pocket detection chambers, to
measure each worker’s exposure to radiation.
Monitors inform their supervisors when a
worker’s exposure to radiation or the level o f
radiation in a work area approaches specified

maximum permissible limits and they recom­
mend work stoppage in potentially unsafe areas.
They calculate the amount of time that personnel
may work in contaminated areas, considering
maximum radiation exposure limits for workers
and the radiation level in the area. Monitors may
also determine clothing requirements and other
safety precautions to be followed by workers
entering radiation zones.
Other duties may include instructing workers
in radiation safety procedures, checking and
servicing radiation detection instruments, and
maintaining records on individual radiation ex­
posures and the location and intensity of radio­
activity in contaminated areas.
In addition to health physicists and radiation
monitors, other occupations require training
which is unique to the atomic energy field. For
example, although a nuclear reactor operator’s
job in a nuclear power station is similar to a
boiler operator’s job in a conventional power sta­
tion, he must learn to operate the controls of a
nuclear reactor rather than the controls of a
conventional steam-generating boiler. He may
also control the operation o f other equipment
such as turbines and generators. In addition,
reactor operators may perform work in connec­
tion with reactor fuel handling operations, such
as the loading and unloading of nuclear fuel.

Radiation monitor flanked by nuclear reactor operators checks
radioactive material


Nuclear reactor operators who work with
research and test reactors check reactor control
panels and adjust controls to maintain specified
operating conditions within the reactor, such as
power and radiation levels. They also assist in
setting up and conducting tests and experiments;
for example, they may insert objects into the
reactor core for exposure to radiation. They work
under the direction o f scientists and engineers in
charge of the tests and experiments.
An estimated 1,200 nuclear reactor operators
were employed in atomic energy activities in
1962. More than half were engaged in the pro­
duction of plutonium and other special defense
materials, and most of the remainder worked in
research and development laboratories.
Accelerator operators set up and coordinate
the operation o f particle accelerators. They adjust
machine controls to accelerate electrically charged
particles, in accordance with instructions from
the scientist in charge of the experiment, and
set up target materials which are to be bom­
barded by the accelerated particles. They may
also assist in the maintenance of equipment.
An estimated 400 radiographers were employed
in atomic energy work in 1962. These workers
take radiographs o f metal castings, welds, and
other objects by adjusting the controls o f an
X-ray machine or by exposing a source of radio­
activity to the object to be radiographed. They
select the proper type o f radiation source and
film to use and apply standard mathematical
formulas to determine exposure distance and time.
While taking radiographs, they use radiation
detection instruments to monitor the work area
for potential radiation hazards. Radiographers
also remove and develop the film or plate and
may assist in its analysis.
Many other specialized workers are employed
in the atomic energy field. Hot-cell technicians
operate remote-controlled equipment to test
radioactive materials which are placed in hot
cells—rooms which are enclosed with radiation
shielding materials, such as lead and concrete.
By controlling “ slave manipulators” (mechani­
cal devices which act as a pair o f arms and
hands) from outside the cell and observing their
actions through the cell window, these technicians


perform standard chemical and metallurgical
tests involving radioactive materials. Hot-cell
technicians may also enter the cell wearing pro­
tective clothing (after clearance by a radiation
monitor) to set up experiments or to decontami­
nate the cell and equipment. Decontamination
men have the primary duty of decontaminating
equipment, plant areas, and materials exposed to
radioactive contaminants. They use radiationdetection instruments to locate the contamination;
eliminate it by the use of special equipment, deter­
gents, and chemicals; and then verify the effec­
tiveness of the decontamination measures. Wastetreatment operators operate heat exchange units,
pumps, compressors, and other equipment to
decontaminate and dispose of radioactive waste
liquids. Waste-disposal men seal contaminated
wastes in concrete containers and transport the
containers to a burial ground or arrange for sea
burial. Radioisotope-production operators use
slave manipulators and other equipment to pre­
pare radioisotopes for shipping and to perform
chemical analyses to ensure that radioisotopes
conform to specifications. The tasks performed
by employes in the above five jobs may also be
done by chemical process operators.

Hot-cell technician handles radioactive bars with
remote-controlled apparatus

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Training and educational requirements and
advancement opportunities for most workers in
atomic energy activities are generally similar to
those for comparable jobs in other fields and are
discussed elsewhere in this Handbook under the
specific occupations. (See index for page num­
bers.) However, specialized training is required
for many workers because the atomic energy field
is a relatively new field of work, requires rigorous
work standards in both its research and produc­
tion activities, and has unique health and safety
Engineers and scientists at all levels of pro­
fessional training are employed in the atomic
energy field. Many of them have had advanced
training, particularly those engaged in research,
development, and design work. O f the scientists
and engineers employed in research and develop­
ment by major AEC contractors in 1962, nearly
1 in 4 had a Ph. D. degree. The proportion of
engineers with Ph. D. degrees is smaller than the
proportion of scientists with such degrees. How­
ever, graduate training is preferred for an
increasing number of engineering jobs, and train­
ing in nuclear engineering is available almost
exclusively at the graduate level.
Specialized knowledge of nuclear energy is not
required for many scientific and engineering posi­
tions in the atomic energy field, although some
basic knowledge o f it is preferred. However,
specialized knowledge of nuclear energy is essen­
tial for some scientists and engineers. For
example, health physicists must be specially
trained in health physics, and other positions
may require chemists with special training in
radiochemistry or engineers specially trained in
nuclear engineering. This specialized training may
be obtained through taking graduate work at a
university or through on-the-job training. It
emphasizes problems dealing with the properties
and control o f radiation and its effects on
materials or living systems.
Colleges and universities have expanded their
facilities and curriculums in order to provide
training in nuclear energy. Engineers and scien­
tists who plan to specialize in the atomic energy
field generally take graduate work in nuclear
energy, although introductory or background

courses may be taken at the undergraduate level.
Some colleges and universities award graduate
degrees in nuclear engineering or nuclear science.
Others offer graduate training in these fields,
but award degrees only in the traditional engi­
neering or scientific fields.
Craftsmen in some atomic energy jobs may
need more training than most craftsmen in com­
parable nonatomic jobs. Stricter performance
requirements may be needed because of the
extreme precision usually required to insure
efficient operation of equipment and because com­
plex equipment and machinery must be main­
tained. For example, pipefitters on atomic proj­
ects may have to fit pipe to tolerances of less than
one ten-thousandth of an inch and work with
pipe made from rare metals costing more than
$1,000 a foot. Welding may have to meet higher
reliability standards than in most nonatomic
fields. Craftsmen in the atomic energy field gen­
erally obtain the required special skills through
on-the-job training. Most AEC installations have
apprentice training programs to develop craft
skills. Some union craft training programs give
particular attention to the special work require­
ments of the atomic energy field.
The following discussion of training, educa­
tion, and other qualifications relates to jobs
which are unique to the field of atomic energy
or which require specialized training which is
unique to the field. Such training mainly gives
workers an understanding of radiation, methods
o f handling radioactive materials or radiationproducing equipment, and procedures to follow
when working in radioactive areas.
Employers prefer that health physicists have
a bachelor’s degree in physics, chemistry, or
engineering, and a year or more of graduate
work in health physics. In some cases, related
technical training and experience can be sub­
stituted for part of the academic requirement.
Under an AEC fellowship program, health
physicists attend lectures at a university during
the academic year to obtain a fundamental
knowledge of radiation physics and biophysics,
instrumentation, the interaction of radiation
with matter and living systems, and the princi­
ples of permissible radiation exposure and pre­
vention of undesirable exposure. During the
summer months, they work at Commission instal­


lations on problems of monitoring (measurement
of radiation level), instrument adjustment, shield­
ing, and waste disposal associated with the oper­
ation of nuclear reactors and particle accelerators,
the processing of nuclear fuels, and the handling
of radioisotopes.
To qualify for on-the-job training as a radia­
tion monitor, a high school education with
courses in mathematics, physics, and chemistry
usually is sufficient. Completion of some college
courses in the physical or biological sciences is
preferred and experience in working with
laboratory equipment is desirable. Radiation
monitors must become familiar with character­
istics of radiation, maximum permissible radi­
ation exposure levels, and methods of calculating
exposure periods. They must also learn how to
use radiation detection instruments.
Nuclear power reactor operators need a basic
understanding of reactor theory and a working
knowledge of reactor controls. The minimum
requirement for an operator trainee usually is
a high school education, although college-level
training may be required by some employers. To
become a ful]y qualified operator of a reactor in
an electric power station, the trainee must get
experience in power station operation and com­
plete 6 months to 1 year of intensive on-the-job
training in reaccor theory and operation. Power
reactor operators usually are selected from con­
ventional power plant personnel having experi­
ence as boiler or turbine operators. Operators
of research and test reactors must also be high
school graduates. Preference is given to those
who have completed courses in science and engi­
neering at a college level. They need from 2 to
4 years of on-the-job training, covering all phases
of reactor operation, before being considered
fully qualified. Workers who operate the con­
trols of private nuclear reactors must be
licensed by the AEC. To qualify for a license,
the trainee must pass an operating test, a writ­
ten test given by the Commission, and a medical
To qualify for on-the-job training as an accel­
erator operator, a high school education, includ­
ing courses in mathematics and physics, is usu­
ally required. Extensive training in electronics
or a bachelor’s degree in engineering or physics
may be required for operators of very high-


energy machines. Accelerator operators receive
on-the-job training covering operating, repair,
and safety procedures. Such training may last
from 2 to 7 months or more, depending on the
type of accelerator. To qualify for on-the-job
training as radiographers, a high school educa­
tion, including courses in mathematics, chemistry,
and physics is usually sufficient.
High school graduates with some mechanical
experience usually can qualify for on-the-job
training as hot-cell technicians. They are given
about 1 to 2 years of in-plant training. High
school graduates can become decontamination
men after receiving 3 to 15 months of formal
technical instruction and on-the-job training. For
the job of radioisotope-production operator,
a high school education, with courses in chemis­
try, is usually required. One or 2 years of onthe-job training may be necessary to become fully
qualified. High school graduates can qualify
as waste-treatment operators, but experience
in reading electronic instruments or in a
chemical laboratory is desirable. After 15 to
18 months of on-the-job training in the opera­
tion of equipment and use of instruments, they
are fully qualified. High school graduates can
also qualify for employment as waste-disposal
men. They receive on-the-job training in the
operation of equipment and the avoidance of
radiation hazards.
Many other workers in the atomic energy
field also need special training because of the
presence of potential radiation hazards. Employ­
ees who work in the vicinity of such hazards
should have some training in the nature of
radiation and the procedures to follow in case
of its accidental release. Workers who handle
radioisotopes or maintain radioisotope gages need
a basic knowledge of health physics in addition
to specific training related to their particular
jobs. Technicians, chemical process operators,
and maintenance craftsmen in nuclear power
plants and fuel processing facilities also require
some health physics training if they work with
radioactive materials or perform work in radi­
ation-contaminated areas. Such training is gen­
erally provided through in-plant programs—for
example, through apprentice training programs
for craftsmen— and may range from less than an
hour to several weeks or more, depending largely

on the degree of potential exposure to radiation.
In some States, workers may obtain such training
through adult vocational educational programs.
Individuals who handle data which are classi­
fied (restricted for reasons of national security)
or who work on classified projects in the atomic
energy field must have a security clearance. This
is a finding based on an investigation of a per­
son’s character, loyalty, and associations. A ll
employees of the Atomic Energy Commission
must have such clearance.
The Atomic Energy Commission supports
extensive on-the-job and specialized training pro­
grams to help prepare scientists, engineers,
technicians, and other workers for the atomic
energy field. The AEC offers graduate fellow­
ships in specialized fields, trains people at its
contractor-operated facilities, conducts training
schools, and provides uranium and other materi­
als as well as financial aid to educational
Several kinds of graduate fellowships are
offered by the AEC. The largest number of fel­
lowships, about 175 for the 1962-63 academic
year, are granted for the study of nuclear
energy technology. These fellowships are avail­
able for first, intermediate, and final years of
graduate work at 59 participating universities.
The prerequisite is a bachelor’s degree in engi­
neering or physical science, with courses in
mathematics through differential equations.
Fellowships in radiological (or health) physics
provide for 9 months’ training at a university,
followed by 3 months’ training at a Commission
laboratory. Approximately 90 such fellowships
are available each year to students with bachelor’s
degrees in biology, chemistry, engineering, or
physics with courses in mathematics through
calculus. About 10 additional fellowships are
available for advanced training in health physics
leading to a doctorate. The AEC also offers about
10 fellowships each year leading to the master’s
degree in industrial hygiene for students who
hold bachelor’s degrees with a major in physics,
chemistry, or engineering.
Additional educational and training oppor­
tunities are offered in cooperative programs
arranged by AEC laboratories with colleges and
universities. Temporary employment at AECowned laboratories is available to faculty mem­

bers and students. Engineering undergraduates
may work at laboratories and other Commission
facilities on a rotation basis with classroom studies,
and graduate students may do their thesis work
at such laboratories.
The AEC sponsors institutes at which college
and high school faculty members can obtain
training in the latest developments in nuclear
energy technology, radiation biology, and the use
and safe handling of radioisotopes. Courses in
health physics are offered by the AEC to State
and local government employees concerned with
licensing and inspecting functions in the atomic
energy field. The AEC also sponsors the Oak
Ridge Institute of Nuclear Studies, which con­
ducts a school to train physicians, scientists, and
engineers in radioisotope technology.
Many Commission contractors offer technical
and graduate instruction at their own plants or
at nearby colleges to prepare new employees for
work in their organizations or to give further
training to experienced personnel. Some contrac­
tors send employees outside the immediate area
to receive graduate-level instruction, and pay
their transportation, tuition, and other expenses.
Contractors often give tuition assistance to em­
ployees desiring to attend college and university
courses on their own time.

Employment Outlook
Continued employment growth is expected in
most atomic energy activities during the 1960’s
and in the longer run as a result of the growth
of existing uses of atomic energy and the devel­
opment of new applications. Job opportunities
will be especially good for professional and
technical personnel and for highly skilled crafts­
men. In addition to opportunities provided by
employment growth, a few thousand additional
job openings will result each year from the need
to replace workers who transfer to other fields of
work, or who retire or die.
Increasing research and development expendi­
tures should lead to further employment growth
in laboratories engaged in atomic energy work.
More workers are already employed in such
laboratories than in any other atomic energy
activity. Employment is also expected to con­
tinue to increase in the design and manufacture
of nuclear reactors and reactor components, in


the manufacture of nuclear instruments, and in
the processing and packaging of radioisotopes.
As more nuclear reactors are built and put into
operation, employment will increase both in
the operation and maintenance of reactors and
in such related activities as the fabrication and
reprocessing of reactor fuel elements and the
disposal of radioactive wastes. In contrast,
employment in the mining, milling, refining, and
enrichment of uranium probably will increase
little, and may even decline.
The use of nuclear reactors in electric power
stations is expected to become more widespread
during the next 10 to 15 years, as nuclear energy
becomes more cost-competitive for steam genera­
tion with fossil-fuel sources, such as coal, oil,
and gas. Nuclear energy is expected to find grow­
ing applications in the Nation’s space and mis­
sile program, for rocket engines and for auxiliary
power for space vehicles. Additional areas that
will expand the applications of atomic power
include the Nation’s reactor program for sub­
marine and other maritime use, the further
development of radioisotope technology and its
applications, and the development of nonmilitary
uses for nuclear explosives.
Expansion of nuclear energy activities will
create an increased need for trained professional
and technical workers and skilled craftsmen.
Particular need will exist for scientists (such as
physicists, chemists, mathematicians, metal­
lurgists, biological scientists, and health physi­
cists) ; engineers (such as mechanical, electrical
and electronics, chemical, reactor, and metal­
lurgical) ; technicians (such as engineering and
physical science aids, draftsmen, electronics tech­
nicians, instrument technicians, and radiation
monitors) ; and craftsmen (such as machinery
repairmen, machinists, electricians, plumbers and
pipefitters, and instrument repairmen).

Earnings and Working Conditions
Information on earnings in individual occupa­
tions in atomic energy activities is not available.
However, indications are that earnings of the
work force as a whole in some nuclear energy
activities are higher than in most non-nuclear
energy activities. In 1962, blue-collar workers
employed by contractors at AEC laboratories and



other installations had average straight-time
hourly earnings of $2.98. This compares, for
example, with an average of $2.39 an hour for
blue-collar workers in all manufacturing indus­
Professional workers employed at AEC instal­
lations averaged $882 a month in base pay in
1962, and other white-collar workers (largely
clerical and other office personnel), $483. (Earn­
ings data for many of the occupations found in
the atomic energy field are included in the state­
ments on these occupations elsewhere in this
Handbook. See index for page numbers.)
Most workers in the atomic energy field receive
2 or 3 weeks’ vacation with pay, depending on
their length of service. In addition, most firms
in this field have group life, health, and accident
insurance coverage and retirement plans.
Working conditions in uranium mining and
milling, instrument and auxiliary equipment
manufacturing, and facilities construction are
similar to those in comparable nonatomic energy
activities. In other atomic energy activities,
in which the major proportion of workers in
the field are employed, working conditions
generally are unusually good. Buildings and
plants are relatively new and are well lighted
and ventilated. Equipment, tools, and machines
are modern and sometimes the most advanced
of their type. The surroundings are also pleas­
ant because the buildings are often spread out
over wide land areas. In some cases, plants
are located in remote areas.
Extensive safeguards hava been established to
insure the health and safety of workers in the
atomic energy field. However, only a small pro­
portion of employees in the atomic energy field
work in areas where direct radiation dangers
The AEC regulates the possession and use of
radioactive materials, and AEC personnel inspect
nuclear facilities to insure compliance with the
692-408 0— 63--- 36

A E C ’s health and safety requirements. Because
the hazards of radiation are unique, constant
efforts are being made to provide better safety
standards and regulations.
Workers in uranium mines are subject to some
hazard from the presence of radioactive gas in
the air, which, if inhaled over a number of years,
could cause lung injury. However, practically
all mines have mechanical ventilation systems to
reduce concentrations of this gas. Uranium mills
and other fuel processing facilities employing
modern processes usually have no difficulty in
maintaining safe working levels of radioactivity.
The AEC and its contractors, who employ more
than half of all atomic energy workers, have
maintained a good safety record. In 1962, the
average number of disabling injuries for all
AEC operations was 1.9 for each million
employee hours worked, compared with an aver­
age of 11.4 for all manufacturing industries.
Most plant hourly paid workers belong to
unions. Among unions which have members in
the atomic energy field are unions in the Metal
Trades Department, A F L -C IO , such as: The
International Association of Machinists; the
International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, Iron
Shipbuilders, Blacksmiths, Forgers and Helpers;
the International Brotherhood of Electrical
Workers; the International Chemical Workers
Union; and the United Association of Journey­
men and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipe
Fitting Industry o f the United States and
Canada. The Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers
International Union also represents workers in
this field.

Where To Go for More Information
Information about employment in the atomic
energy field may be obtained by writing to the
Division of Labor Belations, U.S. Atomic Energy
Commission, Washington, D.C., 20545.

The baking industry, which serves an everyday
need in every community, is one of the largest
food-processing industries in the United States
in terms o f employment. Occupations in baking
employment to several hundred thousand workers
throughout the country. Replacement needs, as
well as the increasing food requirements of a
rapidly growing population, will provide
thousands of opportunities for young people to
find jobs in this industry in the remainder of the
1960’s and early 1970’s.
The industry employs men and women to make
bakery products and to deliver them to stores,
homes, and restaurants. For those who like to
use their hands, the industry provides hundreds
of opportunities each year to learn a skilled trade
as a baker or other skilled baking specialist, such
as mixer, benchhand, and ovenman. For those
who like to meet people and to sell, it offers jobs
as driver-salesman and sales supervisor. For the
mechanically inclined, the industry has openings
for skilled workers who maintain and repair the
increasing amount of machinery and equipment
used in today’s modern bakery. For those who
like to work in an office, the industry offers the
familiar types of clerical jobs. In addition, large
baking firms employ many administrative and
managerial specialists to direct operations.

Nature and Location of the Industry
The discussion that follows covers the portion
o f the baking industry that produces perishable
bakery products such as bread, rolls, cakes, pies,
pastries, and doughnuts. Most of these products
are made by several types of industrial baking
firms. Large wholesale bakeries make products
for sale to grocers, restaurants, hotels, and other
establishments which then resell them to the
public. Bakeries owned and operated by grocery
chainstores make and distribute baked products
to their own stores. Homeservice bakeries deliver
their products directly to customers’ homes.

Multioutlet bakeries make their products in a
central bakery for resale through their own retail
stores. In addition to industrial bakeries, neigh­
borhood retail shops make bakery products on the
premises and sell them to local customers.
In 1962, more than 260,000 men and women
were employed in more than 6,000 industrial bak­
eries ; about three-fourths of them were in whole­
sale bakeries. An additional 85,000 men and
women, including shopowners, were employed in
nearly 12,000 neighborhood retail bake shops.
Dry baked goods, which include products such as
crackers, pretzels, and ice cream cones, are not
covered in this chapter. About 40,000 workers are
employed in the production of dry baked goods.
Most baking plants are small because they
serve only their own community or neighborhood.
A small number of bakeries serve markets up to
100 miles away; only a few distribute baked foods
farther away. Nearly half of the industrial bak­
eries had fewer than 10 employees each; in con­
trast, about 10 industrial baking plants employed
more than 1,000 workers each. Neighborhood
bake shops averaged six employees each.
Almost every community in the United States
has at least one bakery. However, nearly 60 per­
cent of all industrial bakeries and the same pro­
portion of the industry’s employees are in the
following nine States: New York, Pennsylvania,
California, Illinois, Ohio, Massachusetts, New
Jersey, Michigan, and Texas.

Occupations in the Baking Industry
Nearly 55 percent of the workers in the perish­
able bakery products industry perform the
actual baking operations, receive and store raw
materials, or maintain and repair machinery and
equipment. About every fourth worker in the
baking industry is engaged in sales, mainly as
driver-salesmen for bakeries selling to retail
stores or directly to homes. Many drivers with
no sales duties are employed to deliver bakery
products to distribution centers, hotels, restau­


rants, and stores. The remainder of the work
force are employed in administrative, profes­
sional and technical and clerical jobs.
About 1 o f every 5 industrial bakery workers is
a woman. Most women workers are employed as
secretaries, typists, bookkeepers, and in other office
jobs. Some are employed in production jobs, such
as those o f slicing machine operator, wrapping
machine operator, or pie and cake packer; very
few women are bakers. In neighborhood bakeshops, many women work as sales clerks.
Production Occupations. In large baking plants,
each operation in the baking process is handled by
a specialized worker. In general, these workers
load and unload machines, watch the operation
of the machines, and inspect the output. Mixers
(D.O.T. 4r-01.600 through .700) weigh ingredi­
ents and combine them in blending machines. By
means of instruments, they carefully control tim­
ing and temperature in order to produce a uni­
form well-blended dough. The dough is sent to
a “ proofing” room where the warm temperature
produces a fermenting process which causes the
dough to rise. When the dough has risen it is

Dough mixer releases dough in trough

poured into another blending machine and addi­
tional flour, liquids, sugar, salt, and shortening
are added and mixed. The dough then goes
through another fermenting process before it is
shaped into loaves or rolls. Dividermen (D.O.T.
6-02.123) operate machines which divide the
dough according to the weight of the loaf to be
produced. The pieces of dough are rolled into
balls which are dusted with flour in a rounding
machine. Dough molders or molding machine
operators (D.O.T. 6-02.124) operate machines
which press all the air bubbles from the dough
and form it into loaves or rolls. 'When fancy
shaped bread or rolls are made, bench hands
(D.O.T. 4-01.200) knead and form the dough by
hand into various shapes, and place the pieces of
dough in the pans. The pans containing the
machine- and hand-shaped dough go to the final
proofing room where the dough rises for about an
hour before it is removed from the proofing room
and placed in the oven by a helper (D.O.T. 802.10). Ovenmen (D.O.T. 4-01.800) adjust temp­
erature and timing devices on the ovens.
In small bakeries, all-round bakers (D.O.T.
4^01.100) assisted by helpers usually carry
through all the steps needed to turn out finished
baked products. Large bakeries employ all-round
bakers as working foremen in charge of one or
more operations. These workers supervise the
men and machines in their department and coor­
dinate their activity with that in other depart­
ments in order to meet production schedules.
A considerable number of helpers (D.O.T.
8-02.10) are employed in baking operations.
They may assist all-round bakers and specialized
bakery workers. They have job titles such as
dough mixer helper, bench hand helper, and
ovenman helper. Helpers also perform such jobs
as greasing pans, removing bread from pans,
pushing troughs and racks, and washing pans.
After baked foods leave the oven and are
cooled, several types o f workers prepare them
for delivery to customers. Slicing-and-wrapping
machine operators (D.O.T. 6-02.420 and .430)
feed loaves of bread onto conveyors leading into
the machines and watch the slicing and wrapping
operations. They adjust the machines and keep
them supplied with waxed paper and labels. The
wrapped loaves leave the machines and travel
along a conveyor belt-to the shipping platform.

Many bakery employees work in icing depart­
ments where they give the finishing touches to
cakes, pastries, and other sweet goods. Icing
mixers (D.O.T. 4-02.321) prepare cake icings and
fillings, following special formulas o f the bakery.
They weigh and measure ingredients and mix
them by machine. They also prepare cooked
fillings for pies, tarts, and other filled pastries.
In small plants, icing mixers may also spread
icing on cakes and cookies. Hand icers (D.O.T.
4^02.311 and 6-02.311) and machine icers (D.O.T.
6-02.331) cover baked cakes and pastries with
icing or frosting, either by hand or by machine,
depending on the type o f product and the extent
o f mechanization in the plant.
Bakeries employ many workers in their stor­
age, warehousing, and shipping departments.
Receiving and stock clerks check and keep rec­
ords o f incoming supplies and ingredients used
in making baked foods and deliver them to
various departments. Packers and checkers make
up orders o f bakery products for delivery by
Maintenance Occupations. Baking firms employ
skilled maintenance workers and their helpers
to keep machinery and equipment in good
operating condition. Large plants', which are
usually highly mechanized, employ many o f these
workers, such as electricians, machinists, and
stationery engineers. Small- and medium-size
plants employ maintenance workers to maintain
and repair many types o f plant equipment. In
addition, since many baking firms have fleets of
trucks, a large number o f truck mechanics and
other personnel are employed to keep the vehicles
in good operating condition.
Sales and Driving Occupations. Selling and
delivery o f finished baked foods to grocers, res­
taurants, hotels, homes, and other customers
provide jobs for many thousands o f the indus­
try’s workers. Some of these workers sell baked
foods and others drive trucks, but most of them
perform a combination o f these jobs. Driversalesmen, called routemen. (D.O.T. 7-35.100)
work for either wholesale bakeries or home-service
bakeries. They deliver bread and other baked
foods to grocery stores or to homes along their
assigned routes and collect payment for delivered


Baker examines bread dough to see if it is ready for oven

products. A major part of their job is to try to
increase customers’ orders and to gain new cus­
tomers on their routes. Wholesale driver-salesmen
arrange their baked products on shelves or dis­
play racks in grocery stores. At some busy stores,
they may restock the shelves several times a day.
Home-service driver-salesmen make deliveries
directly to customers’ homes with a basket of
baked foods from which housewives can make
their selection. Driver-salesmen return to the
bakery at the end o f each day to make a report o f
the day’s transactions. They turn in money col­
lected from their customers and return unsold
baked foods. They make up a list o f various
types o f baked foods that represents their esti­
mate o f what grocers or housewives on their
routes will buy the next day. These estimates,
assembled from driver-salesmen on all routes,
serve as guides for production managers in mak­
ing up production schedules for the next morning.
A large bakery may employ several route
supervisors, each in charge o f a group o f from
6 to 10 driver-salesmen. In a smaller bakery,
one route supervisor may be in charge o f all the
salesmen. When one of the salesmen is absent,
the supervisor may take over the route until the



salesman returns or is replaced. Route super­
visors also train new driver-salesmen.
Chain grocery store bakeries and multioutlet
retail bakeries generally employ truckdrivers
rather than driver-salesmen. These employees
drive large vans, delivering baked foods to each
of their company’s stores. Truckdrivers for chainstore bakeries deliver wrapped bread and other
bakery products to loading platforms of the
stores. Stock clerks then arrange the display of
baked goods in the stores. In bakeries which
operate their own retail bakery outlets, the truckdrivers wheel the unwrapped baked foods in
enclosed metal racks from the van to each store.
Sales clerks then arrange the display of these
freshly baked foods.



Administrative Clerical and Professional and
Technical Occupations. Administrators in large
baking firms and proprietors of small firms
coordinate all baking activities from the purchase
o f raw materials to the production and delivery
o f baked products. In large baking firms, activi­
ties are divided into separate departments or
functions and supervised by plant managers,
comptrollers, sales managers, and other execu­
tives. Other administrative employees may
specialize in such fields as accounting, purchas­
ing, advertising, and personnel and industrial
relations. Business offices of bakeries employ
many types of clerical workers, including book­
keepers, cashiers, clerks, business machine oper­
ators, stenographers, typists, and switchboard
operators. A large proportion of these office
workers are women. Some large baking com­
panies have laboratories and test kitchens where
chemists, home economists, and their assistants
test ingredients and prepare formulas and reci­
pes for bread and other baked items. (Detailed
discussions of the duties, training, and employ­
ment outlook for maintenance, sales, driving,
administrative, clerical, and technical personnel
appear elsewhere in this Handbook. See index
for page numbers.)

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Training requirements for the various occu­
pations in the baking industry range from a few
days of on-the-job training to several years of
training and experience. For example, some

bakery workers, such as slicing machine oper­
ators, can be trained on the job in a few days.
Skilled workers, such as all-round bakers and
baking specialists, require at least 3 or 4 years
of training. Professional personnel and some
administrative workers must have a college
degree or its equivalent in their particular
Most inexperienced production workers in the
baking industry are hired as helpers (utility
workers). They may be assigned such tasks as
washing and greasing pans, carrying ingredients
to mixing machines, pushing troughs of dough
to the proofing room, and otherwise assisting
bakers in the shop. By working alongside skilled
bakers, helpers are able to acquire baking skills.
Some bakeries train their bakers through for­
mal apprenticeship programs. Apprentices gen­
erally are selected from among the helpers in the
plant. Employers usually require that apprentice
applicants be between 18 and 26 years of age, have
a high school or vocational school education, and
show an interest in baking. Apprenticeship pro­
grams last 3 or 4 years. They include on-the-job
training in all baking operations and classroom
instruction in related subjects.
Some workers acquire baking skills by taking
courses in vocational school or by learning the
trade in the Armed Forces. Such training may
not qualify a young man as a skilled baker, but
it may help him to become an apprentice and
perhaps shorten his apprenticeship period.
Bakers may be promoted to such jobs as work­
ing foreman, or department foreman. Some bak­
ers who have developed special skill in fancy
cakemaking or piemaking may find jobs in hotel
or restaurant bakeries. All-round bakers with
some business ability sometimes open their own
Good health is important for a young man or
woman planning to enter one of the baking jobs.
For anyone handling food, most States require
a health certificate indicating that the worker is
free from communicable diseases. Good health
is also necessary because o f irregular working
hours and the extremes in temperatures found
in bakeries.
Some bakeries have apprentice training pro­
grams for maintenance workers such as machin­
ists, electricians, and auto mechanics. Other
plants hire inexperienced workers as mechanics’

helpers, who gain experience and know-how while
working with skilled mechanics. Some bakeries
hire skilled maintenance men directly.
For jobs as driver-salesmen or truckdrivers,
baking firms generally hire inexperienced young
men with a high school education. Inexperienced
workers often begin as stock clerks, packers,
or checkers, and may be promoted to one o f the
driving jobs as vacancies occur. Some young men
take summer and part-time jobs as driver-helpers
to gain experience. Applicants for these jobs
must be able to get a commercial driving permit
(chauffeur’s license). Large baking companies
often give tests to their applicants to determine
whether they are safe drivers. A pleasant appear­
ance and the ability to get along well with peo­
ple are preferred qualifications for the new
worker who wants to sell as well as drive. New
driver-salesmen may be given classroom instruc­
tion in sales, display, and delivery procedures.
Most training, however, is given on the job by
route supervisors. Driver-salesmen may be pro­
moted to jobs as route supervisor and sales
Administrative jobs are usually filled by
upgrading personnel already employed in the
firm. Some owners and production managers of
bakeries have come from the ranks of baking
craftsmen. Others began their careers in sales
departments. In recent years, large baking firms
have required that their new administrative
workers have a college degree in one of the
administrative fields such as marketing, account­
ing, labor relations, personnel, or advertising.
Several colleges offer courses in baking science
and management; one college offers a 4-year
course in this field.
Young women who have completed a commer­
cial course in high school, junior college, or a
business school usually are preferred for secre­
tarial, stenographic, and other office jobs.

Employment Outlook
Young people will have many thousands of
job opportunities in the baking industry during
the remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer
run. Some o f these openings will result from
the anticipated slow expansion in the industry,
but most o f them will arise from replacement
needs. Retirements and deaths alone may pro­


vide about 6,000 jobs each year. Many other
opportunities will arise as workers move to other
industries or open their own bakeshops.
A continued expansion in the overall demand
for bakery products is expected, mainly because
population will increase. Also, because o f the
anticipated rise in income, people will be able
to buy more baked foods, including the “ brownand-serve” type.
The total demand for factory-baked foods is
expected to rise. It will, however, continue to
increase at a slower rate than population. Dur­
ing the past several decades, people have been
eating less bread; as a result, consumption per
person has dropped. Probably, the main reason
for this drop in bread consumption is the increas­
ing weight consciousness of the American con­
sumer. The trend toward the use of prepared
flour mixes for baking cakes and pastries at
home has also reduced the demand for factorybaked foods.
Employment in some occupations will grow,
whereas in others it will decline. For example,
as families move into suburbs, salesmen’s ter­
ritories will expand and more driver-salesmen
will be needed. Some increases may occur among
clerical workers as a result of additional record­
keeping requirements. As plants become more
mechanized, additional maintenance workers will
probably be needed to keep the machinery and
equipment in operating order. The anticipated
increases in these occupations will more than
offset the expected decline in the number of
bakery production workers. It is expected that
employment in some baking production jobs will
continue to decline as a result of the installation
of mechanized processing and materials han­
dling equipment. For example, the employment
of laborers and helpers has dropped sharply
because machines now do many of the tasks form­
erly done by these workers.
Improvements in the methods of processing
baked goods may also reduce employment among
bakery production workers. The method o f fer­
menting a yeast broth rather than a dough mix­
ture, for example, has cut processing time from
several hours to a matter of minutes. In addition,
the freezing of baked goods for storage until
ready for sale permits bakeries to prepare a
week’s requirement at one time rather than small
batches daily.



Earnings and Working Conditions
Earnings of production workers in the perish­
able bakery products industry averaged $92.80
a week, or $2.28 an hour, in 1962. This average
was about the same as that for all manufactur­
ing employees. Size of city and geographic loca­
tion affect earnings of bakery workers. In gen­
eral, the larger the city, the higher the wage
rate. Wage rates also tend to be higher in the
Far West and the Northeast than in the South
or Southwest. Because of these geographic varia­
tions, the highest and the lowest hourly wage
rates vary widely. For example, according to
12 union-management contracts covering employ­
ees in 42 wholesale bakeries in 1962, hourly wage
rates for bench hands ranged from $1.91 to $3.57,
and those for mixers ranged from $1.70 to $3.67.
Minimum hourly rates in the major baking occu­
pations in these bakeries were concentrated in the
following ranges:
Baking foremen (and all-round bakers)___
Mixers (dough or icing)____________________
leers and decorators_______________________
Slicing and wrapping machine operators..
General helpers_____________________________
Maintenance mechanics___________________
Maintenance helpers_______________________


11-$3. 83
7 0 - 3. 67
8 6 - 3. 67
9 1 - 3. 57
9 0 - 3. 67
5 9 - 2. 94
5 9 - 2. 71
5 9 - 3. 22
5 9 - 2. 62
5 9 - 2. 39

Some plant employees work night shifts and
weekends because baking is done around the
clock in many plants. Workers receive from 7 to
23 cents an hour extra pay for nightwork. How­
ever, the night shift is being eliminated in some
bakeries because the increasing use of freezing
processes makes it possible to prepare baked
goods in advance, and store them until needed.
Most plant workers are on a 40-hour workweek,
although some work 35 or 37% hours and others
44 or 48 hours regularly. For those who work a
35- or 37%-hour week, time and a half is paid
for work beyond their regular schedule. For all
others, time and a half is paid for all work over
40 hours.
Driver-salesmen are usually paid a guaranteed
minimum salary plus a percentage of their dollar
sales. According to a recent survey of baking
firms in 13 Eastern States, driver-salesmen for
both wholesale and home-service bakeries had
minimum weekly salaries of from $72.50 to

$98.00. By selling more baked products to their
customers and by increasing the number of cus­
tomers on their routes, driver-salesmen can
increase their earnings considerably. Companies
generally pay for uniforms and their mainte­
Truckdrivers for baking plants are paid by the
hour. Hourly rates and hours worked vary
from city to city. In mid-1962, the minimum
wage rates and hours per week, provided by
union-management contracts in 11 selected cities,
were as follows:
M in im u m
w a g e ra te

Atlanta, Ga_____________________________
Birmingham, Ala_______________________
Cleveland, Ohio_________________________
Dallas, Tex______________________________
Detroit, Mich, (bread)_________________
Houston, Tex___________________________
Little Rock, A rk ________________________
New York, N .Y . (cake and pastry)___
Oklahoma City, Okla__________________
Pittsburgh, Pa. (bread)________________
Oakland, Calif, (transport and chain

H ou rs p er
w eek

$2. 42
2. 16
3 .0 3
2 .3 2
2. 75
2 .3 7
2. 16
2. 85
2. 12
2 .3 5


3. 75


Home-service driver-salesmen and truckdriv­
ers work mostly out of doors. Wholesale driversalesmen spend much of their time arranging
bakery goods on grocers5 display shelves. Many
jobs in baking plants involve some strenuous
physical work, despite the considerable mech­
anization of baking processes. W ork near ovens
may be unpleasantly hot.
Paid vacations for employees are almost uni­
versal in industrial baking firms. Vacation peri­
ods range from 1 to 4 weeks, according to length
of service. The number of paid holidays ranges
from 5 to 11 days, depending on locality. Most
baking firms have adopted some type of insur­
ance or pension arrangement for their employees,
such as life insurance plans, health insurance
programs, or retirement pension plans. A large
number of employees are covered by joint unionindustry health and welfare plans and pension
systems which are paid for entirely by employer
Most plant workers and drivers belong to a
labor union. Bakers, baking specialists, and
other plant workers have been organized by
the American Bakery and Confectionery W ork­
ers’ International Union or the Bakery and

Confectionery Workers’ International Union of
America (Ind.). Driver-salesmen and trans­
port drivers are generally members of the Inter­
national Brotherhood of Teamsters, Chaffeurs,
Warehousemen and Helpers of America, Ind.
Some maintenance men are members of craft
unions such as the International Association of
Machinists and the International Union of Oper­
ating Engineers.

Where To Go for More Information
Information on local job openings in the bak­
ing industry may be obtained directly from
bakeries in the community.


High school students—or adults interested in
evening courses—may obtain information on
courses relating to baking by writing to the
Director of Vocational Education or to the Super­
intendent of Schools in their local community,
or to the State Director of Vocational Education
in the Department of Education in the State
General information on job opportunities in the
baking industry and on requirements for enter­
ing accredited schools which offer courses or
degrees in baking science and technology may
be obtained by writing to:
American Bakers Association,
20 North Wacker Dr., Chicago, 111., 60606.

Banks have been described as “ department
stores of finance” because of the great variety
of financial services which they make available
to businessmen and to individuals. They offer
regular and special checking account and sav­
ings account services; installment and mortgage
loans; short-term loans for business and personal
needs; and investment and trust services. They
accept payment of utility bills; issue traveler’s
checks, letters of credit, and money orders; and
offer safe-deposit rentals. Banks continue to
introduce new services; for example, revolving
check credit plans and credit cards for individ­
uals, facilities for handling charge accounts for
retail stores, and “ drive-up” facilities for cus­
tomers’ convenience. The complicated financial
transactions of our present day business world
could not be carried on without the services pro­
vided by banks.

Banks and Their Workers
To handle these and many other services,
about 725,000 people, over half of them women,
worked in banking organizations in early 1963.
Commercial banks, which offer the most varied
services, employed 90 percent of the total. Mutual
savings banks, offering a more limited range of
services—mainly savings deposit accounts, safedeposit rentals, trust management, and mortgage
loans—accounted for about 4 percent of all bank
workers; the 12 Federal Reserve Banks, which
operate as bankers’ banks, employed about 3 per­
cent ; and the remainder were employed in foreign
exchange firms, clearing house associations, check
cashing agencies, and other organizations doing
work closely related to banking.
Other types of financial institutions, which
require many of the same skills as banks, em­
ployed about 275,000 workers in early 1963.
Among these institutions are various kinds of
loan associations, most of which invest customers’
funds in first-mortgage loans on real estate, and
personal finance companies, which specialize in

making short-term loans to individuals. Some
Government agencies also have positions of a
banking nature; among these are the housing
and farm financing agencies, the Export-Import
Bank, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corpora­
tion, and the Board of Governors of the Federal
Reserve System. The Federal and State agencies
concerned with the supervision of banks and
the quasi-Government Federal Reserve Banks
employed about 4,000 bank examiners.
Banks handle an enormous amount of paper­
work. Commercial banks, for example, process
about 15 billion checks a year in addition to vast
quantities of other documents. About 7 out of
10 bank employees are clerical workers who keep
track of these documents and record the trans­
actions they represent. These workers also take
care of correspondence, telephone calls and many
other kinds of office work. Tellers are the largest
specialized occupational group in banks; together
with bookkeepers, and secretaries, stenographers,
and typists, they make up nearly two-thirds o f
all bank clerical workers. (See chart 32.) Other
large groups of clerical workers include office
machine operators, file clerks, telephone opera­
tors, messengers, and pages. Still others are
interviewers, receptionists, personnel clerks, or
mail clerks.
Bank officers—presidents, vice presidents, treas­
urers, comptrollers, and cashiers—are directly
responsible for the management of banks. Along
with junior officers, they make up about one-sixth
of all bank employees. In addition, a consider­
able number of accountants and various other
professional specialists such as lawyers, statisti­
cians, economists, and programers are employed
to make audits or to advise, conduct research,
and prepare reports.
About 4 percent of all bank employees are
service workers, about half of whom are janitors
and cleaners. Other service workers include
guards, watchmen, elevator operators, and cafe­
teria workers.


C H A R T 32


Clerical workers

Clerks and kindred

Employment Outlook


Bank tellers

and typists
Office machine
Managers, officials,
and proprietors

Service workers


Professional, technical,
and kindred workers

All other

» Estimated'
Not elsewhere classified.

This chapter gives information about several
of the principal occupations unique to banking—
Bank Clerks and Related Workers, Tellers, and
Bank Officers. Other occupations mentioned pre­
viously, which also are found in many other
business enterprises, are described elsewhere in
this Handbook. (See index.)

Where Employed
Virtually all cities and towns have one bank or
more. In early 1962, there were about 13,500
commercial banks with approximately 11,500
branches, and more than 500 mutual savings
banks with nearly 550 branches. Nearly 40 per­
cent o f the employees of commercial banks are in
New York, California, Pennsylvania, and Illi­
nois. A substantial majority of the mutual sav­
ings banks and their workers are in New York,
Connecticut, and Massachusetts. New York City,
the financial capital of the Nation, has far more
bank employees than any other city.
Bank employment is concentrated, to a con­
siderable extent, in a relatively limited number

of very large banks and their branches. At the
beginning of 1961, the 31 largest commercial
banks (with an average of 5,000 workers each)
employed twice as many workers as the 9,200
smallest banks (which averaged only 9 workers

Employment opportunities in banks are ex­
pected to be numerous throughout the remainder
of the 1960’s and over the longer run. In addi­
tion to new jobs that will be created by growth,
an even greater number of openings will arise
as employees (many of them women) leave
their jobs to take care of their families, to
retire, or for other reasons. Altogether, banks
may have, on the average, as many as 150,000
jobs to fill each year.
Most of the openings will be in clerical occupa­
tions. In addition, young college graduates
should find an increasing number of opportuni­
ties in trainee jobs which may eventually lead
to officer positions. There will also be some
openings for professional and specialized per­
sonnel, including lawyers, accountants, program­
ed, and personnel workers.
Bank employment is expected to increase
steadily and may exceed a million workers by
the mid-1970’s. Population growth and the
accompanying rise in production, sales, and
national income will lead to expansion in bank­
ing business and employment. More jobs will
also be created as banks further expand their
services. The number of branch banks has been
increasing for many years and will probably
continue to do so as banks seek to make their
services more accessible both in cities and in new
or expanding suburban business centers. The
rapid rise in the number of checking accounts
and checks handled, which was a significant
factor in the growth of bank employment in
recent years, is expected to continue. Other serv­
ices are also expanding rapidly, including special
savings plans and personal loans to individuals
for travel, education, medical and other bills;
and specialized bookkeeping and research and
advisory services for business organizations.
More employees will also be needed as banks
expand their services in such fields as the invest­
ment of employee pension funds and trust man­


agement for individuals. The list of services is
a long and growing one.
At the same time their business is expanding,
banks are moving ahead rapidly with the con­
version of their major activities to electronic
data-processing (E D P ) methods. The use of
electronic equipment will substantially reduce
the number of workers needed for routine and
repetitive work, and will bring about important
changes in the pattern of occupations in bank­
ing. It will also create new jobs, some of them
requiring considerable technical skill. The effect
o f these developments will vary from one occupa­
tion to another, as indicated in the statements
on specific banking occupations which follow.
The net effect of automation will be that banks
can add new services and handle existing ones
more efficiently with only a moderate increase in
the number of employees. It is expected that
ED P will slow down, but not halt, the rapid
growth in employment which has characterized
the banking industry since the end of World
War II.
Bank employees can anticipate steadier em­
ployment than workers in many other fields,
because they are less likely to be affected by
layoffs during periods when the general level
of business activity is low. Even when a bank
is sold or merged with another bank, it usually
continues to do business, and there is little likeli­
hood that workers will lose their jobs. When
bank officials find it necessary to curtail employ­
ment, they usually do so by not replacing employ­
ees who retire or quit their jobs for other reasons.
Although this reduces the number of openings for
new employees, it avoids the necessity of laying
off experienced personnel.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Average earnings of nonsupervisory bank
workers—most of them in clerical jobs—were
$71.80 per week in 1962. The most recent infor­
mation on the earnings in specific clerical occupa­
tions is from a 1960 survey of banks in 27 metro­
politan areas throughout the country. In these
areas, earnings of women employed as routine file
clerks—one of the jobs often filled by beginners
— averaged from $45.50 to $62 a week; averages
for transit clerks were roughly the same or

slightly higher, and were a little higher still for
proof machine operators and bookkeepers. The
highest paid women were secretaries, whose
average earnings ranged from $69 to $91 a
week. For experienced men tabulating machine
operators, the averages were almost as high—$63
to $89 a week. In most cities, the average weekly
earnings of men employed as transit clerks and
proof machine operators were from $1 to $5 or
more higher than those of women in comparable
Among commercial and savings tellers with less
than 5 years’ service, average salaries ranged
from $49.50 to $71.50 a week for women and
from $59 to $80 for men. Men employed as note
tellers—one of the most responsible of all special­
ized teller jobs—who had 5 years or more of serv­
ice earned average weekly salaries ranging from
$75.50 to $106.
In the cities surveyed, salaries for nonsuper­
visory clerical workers as a group were generally
highest in New York City and Chicago, and in
Los Angeles—Long Beach and San FranciscoOakland areas, and lowest in Providence, St.
Louis, and cities in the South (except for Hous­
ton and Washington, D .C.).
College graduates hired as executive trainees
in large city banks in 1962 had average annual
salaries ranging from about $4,600 to $5,200 a
year, depending on size of bank, according to a
private survey. A few banks offered trainees
salaries ranging up to $6,000 a year. The survey
showed that trainees hired 5 years earlier who
had attained junior officer positions earned, on
the average, $7,300 a year, and earnings of those
with 10 years’ experience averaged $10,000 to
$11,000. Earnings of senior bank officers in large
city banks may be several times as great. Salaries
for officers, as well as other employees, are gen­
erally lower in small town banks than in big
city banks.
Most bank employees work a 40-hour week.
Many, particularly in the northeastern part of
the country, have a scheduled 37%-hour week
and a few, principally in the New York City
area, a 35-hour week. In some banks, however,
daily hours may be irregular. Tellers and other
employees may have to work late at least once a
week, and accounting department employees may
work overtime during peak periods at the end



o f each month. In very large banks, some work­
ers engaged in check processing operations may
be employed on late evening or night shifts.
Operators o f electronic computer equipment may
also work on evening or night shifts, since banks
customarily operate expensive computer equip­
ment on a two- or three-shift basis. A small but
growing proportion of bank workers, especially
tellers, work part time.
The number of paid holidays for bank employ­
ees ranges from 5 a year in some cities to 12 or
more in others. In the South and North Central
parts o f the country, it is fairly common for
banks to pay their employees for 5 or 6 holidays
a year, in the West for 7 or 8, and in the North­
east (and some large cities elsewhere) for 11 or



Usually, bank employees are given a 2-week
paid vacation after 1 year’s service. Many banks
allow 3 weeks of vacation after 10 or 15 years’
service, and 4 weeks after 25 years. Group life
insurance and hospitalization and surgical bene­
fit plans are available to many employees. Retire­
ment plans, frequently financed jointly by em­

ployer and employee contributions, are also com­
mon in banking.
Work in banks is generally carried on in clean,
well-lighted, and often air-conditioned office
space. Most clerical work in banks requires no
strenuous physical exertion; a number of jobs
can be performed in a limited work area, thus
affording some opportunities for people with
certain physical handicaps.

Where To Go for More Information
Information on jobs in banking may be ob­
tained from local banks and State bankers’ asso­
ciations. General information on banking occu­
pations and on training opportunities offered by
the banking industry is available from:
American Bankers Association,
12 East 36th St., New York, N.Y., 10016.

For additional information on salaries of cler­
ical workers in banking, see:
W age Structure: Banking Industry, Mid-1960,
(B L S Report 179). Bureau of Labor Statistics,
U.S. Department of Labor, Washington, D.C., 20210.

Bank Clerks and Related Workers
Nature of Work
Many thousands of employees in banks are
bookkeepers, office machine operators, messengers,
or clerks who are assigned to specialized func­
tions. Their duties vary with the size of the
bank and the nature of its business. In a small
bank, a clerk may work as both messenger and
clerk, for example, or as proof machine and
bookkeeping machine operator. Still other clerks
may file materials, operate the switchboard, give
routine information to the public, operate dupli­
cating or other office machines, and help with
sorting and listing of checks and other items.
In large banks, clerks are usually assigned to
specific jobs such as those discussed in the fol­
lowing paragraphs.
Bookkeeping clerks may cancel and file checks,
sort and list various items, and alphabetize mate­
rial for experienced bookkeepers. Transit clerks
(D.O.T. 1-01.43; 1-06.21, .22, and .24; 1-25.03)
sort and list checks and drafts on other banks
and prepare them for mailing back to those

Bank clerk operates proof machine

banks. Mortgage clerks (D.O.T. 1-37.34) type
legal papers affecting titles to real ■estate, record
the transactions, and maintain a record card file.
P roof machine operators (D.O.T. 1-25.68) use
machines which, in a single operation, sort checks
and other items, and add and record the amounts



Bookkeeping machine operators (D.O.T. 1-02
.01, .02, and .03) maintain records of the various
deposits, checks, and other items that are credited
to or charged against customers’ accounts. They
may also cancel and file checks, furnish informa­
tion about balances in customers’ accounts and
prepare customers’ statements for mailing. In
their work, they may use conventional or elec­
tronic bookkeeping machines. Very few hand
bookkeepers are employed.
Bank messengers (D.O.T. 1-06.27) deliver
checks, drafts, letters, and other documents to
other banking offices, business firms, and often
government agencies in the local area. Messengers
in many banks are older men who can do only
light work. Inside messengers or pages are men
or women who run errands within the bank and
may also do simple clerical tasks.
New clerical occupations created by the intro­
duction of advanced electronic data-processing
methods, and which are unique in banks, include
electronic reader-sorter operator (operates elec­
tronic check sorting equipment), check inscriber
or encoder (operates machines that print infor­
mation on checks and other documents in mag­
netic ink to prepare them for machine reading),
and control clerk (keeps track of the huge volume
o f documents flowing in and out of the electronic
data-processing division). Other bank clerks are
engaged in occupations common in many indus­
tries. Information about some of these occupa­
tions is given in the chapter on Clerical and
Related Occupations. (See index for page refer­
ences to statements on Bookkeeping Workers,
Office Machine Operators, Electronic Computer
Operating Personnel, .Secretaries and Stenog­
raphers, and Typists.)

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
High school graduation is adequate prepara­
tion for entry in most clerical jobs in banks. For
the majority of jobs, courses in bookkeeping,
shorthand, typing, and business arithmetic are
desirable. Courses in office machine operation
are also helpful. Before an applicant is hired,
he may be given an intelligence test and a clerical
aptitude test—the latter to determine his speed
and accuracy.

Beginners may be hired for jobs such as file
clerk, bookkeeping clerk, and transit clerk. Some
are trained by the bank to operate proof, book­
keeping, and other office machines. A few start
out as pages or inside messengers.
An employee in a routine clerical job may
eventually be promoted to a minor supervisory
position, or to teller or credit analyst, and
eventually to a senior supervisory position. A
few opportunities for advancement to bank offi­
cer also exist for outstanding clerical employees,
although an increasing number of banks prefer
persons with college training. Additional edu­
cation obtained while employed, particularly the
courses offered by the American Institute of
Banking, may be helpful in advancement. Since
most banks follow a “ promotion-from-within”
policy, length of service is among the factors
considered in advancement.

Employment Outlook
Thousands of openings for bank clerks and
related workers can be expected each year
throughout the remainder of the 1960’s and dur­
ing the early 1970’s. Most of them will probably
result from high turnover—common in many
clerical occupations where the great majority of
workers are women. Other jobs will arise as new
banks and branch banks are opened, particularly
in suburban areas of large cities, and as longestablished banks expand their services.
The number of clerical workers will continue
to rise with the continued expansion in banking
business. However, as more mechanical and elec­
tronic data-processing equipment is introduced,
some routine and repetitive jobs such as check
sorter and bookkeeping machine operator are
expected to decline in number. It is anticipated
that banks will reassign workers displaced by
machines to jobs operating the new equipment, to
other new jobs created by the change in process­
ing methods, or to other duties related to the
many new functions and services which banks
will introduce. The growth in the volume of
work created by new bank facilities and services
is expected to be so great that the total number
of clerical workers will continue to rise for
some years to come, though much less rapidly
than in the recent past. The sharpest increases
in employment are expected in occupations



related to electronic data processing, both those
unique to banks and those, such as keypunch
operator and computer operator, which are also
common to ED P installations in other industries.

See introductory section of this chapter for
more information on Employment Outlook,
Where Employed, Earnings and Working Condi­
tions, and Where To Go for More Information.

(D.O .T. 1-06.02 through .01)

Nature of Work
Every bank—no matter how small—has at
least one teller to receive and pay out money and
record these transactions. Paying and receiving
tellers, with whom most people deal when they
transact business at banks, are mainly occupied
with cashing customers’ checks and handling
deposits and withdrawals during the hours the
bank is open to the public. Before he cashes a
check, the teller must verify the signature, ident­
ity of the person to whom he makes payment,
and be certain that the account against which
the check is drawn is adequate to cover the pay­
ment. He also checks the accuracy of each deposit
slip and enters the amount in a passbook or on
a deposit receipt. Tellers may use machines to
make change and total deposits. A teller han­
dling savings accounts may use a “ window”
posting machine to print a receipt or record in
the customer’s passbook, simultaneously posting
the transactions on the bank’s ledger.
After public banking hours, the teller counts
the cash on hand, lists the currency-received
tickets on a settlement sheet and balances his
day’s accounts . He may also perform other inci­
dental tasks such as sorting checks and deposit
slips, filing new account cards, and removing
closed account cards from files. A paying and
receiving teller may supervise one or more clerks
assigned to assist him.
Large banks also have other tellers who are
identified by the special kinds of financial trans­
actions which they handle. For example, trust
tellers specialize in receiving and issuing receipts
for payments on promissory notes, while the
work of discount tellers involves issuance and
collection of customers’ notes.
Approximately 150,000 tellers were employed
in early 1963, including a considerable number
who worked only part time. About 7 out o f 10
tellers were women.

Tellers receive deposits and cash checks for customers

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
In filling teller positions, banks generally fol­
low a “ promotion-from-within” policy. Both
seniority and ability, as demonstrated in related
clerical jobs, are considered in selecting employ­
ees for such advancement.
Much of the teller’s work involves contact with
the public, and it is therefore important that
they be neat in appearance, and tactful and
courteous in manner. Many customers judge a
bank’s services principally by the impressions
they receive in their dealings with tellers. Accu­
racy, speed, and a good memory are all important
in this job. Also, since they handle large sums
o f money, tellers must be able to meet the stand­
ards established by bonding companies.
A teller who performs ably for several years is
in line for promotion to head teller or to some
other supervisory position. Experienced tellers
may eventually qualify for promotion to bank
officer positions, particularly if they have had
college training or have taken the specialized
courses offered by the banking industry.



E m p lo ym e n t O u tlo o k

The number of bank tellers is expected to
increase rapidly during the middle and late
1960’s and over the longer run, as banks con­
tinue to expand their facilities and services for
the growing urban population. Although in­
creased use o f mechanical and electronic equip­
ment in commercial banks can be expected to
take over some o f the routine work now done
by many tellers, it is unlikely to affect greatly
the total number employed. The new equipment,
however, will tend to reduce the working hours
o f tellers and will, therefore, increase the pro­
portion who are employed part time. In large

savings banks, electronic data-processing equip­
ment substantially speeds up the work of tellers,
making it possible for them to serve many more
Many additional employment opportunities
will arise as workers retire or leave their jobs
for other reasons. Among the thousands of
women tellers, many are likely to stop working
after a few years because o f family responsibili­
See introductory section o f this chapter for
further information on Employment Outlook,
Where Employed, Earnings and Working Condi­
tions, and Where T o Go for More Information.

Bank Officers
(D.O .T. 0-8 5 .1 0 ; 0-97.01 through .05, .1 4 ; 0-98.01 through .06, .08, .11 through .13)

Nature of Work
Practically every bank has a president, who
exercises general direction over all operations,
one or more vice presidents, who either act as
general bank managers or have charge o f par­
ticular departments; and a comptroller or cashier
who (unlike cashiers in stores and other busi­
nesses) is an executive officer generally respon­
sible for bank funds. Some small banks or
branches are managed almost entirely by the
cashier or a vice president. Large banks may
also have treasurers and other senior officers, as
well as assistant officers to supervise various
departments such as trust, credit, investment,
and real estate.
A bank officer makes decisions within the
framework o f policy as set by the board of
directors. His job requires a broad knowledge
of business activities, which he must relate to
the operations o f the particular department
involved. For example, the loan officer must
exercise his best judgment in approving loans,
bearing in mind general business conditions and
the local community situation. He must evaluate
carefully the reports o f credit analysts (who
may be executive trainees) on the individual or
business firm applying for a loan, and balance
the favorable and unfavorable elements in reach­
ing a decision. Similarly, the trust officer must
have a thorough understanding of a particular

Bank officers must exercise good judgment in approving loans

trust agreement, in order to manage a fund or
estate properly. Moreover, only the wise invest­
ment o f trust funds will make it possible to
carry out trust agreements, which may involve
provision for sending a young person to college
or paying pensions to employees. Besides super­
vising financial services, bank officers are fre­
quently called upon to advise individuals and
businessmen and to participate in community
Banking institutions employed about 120,000
officers in early 1963. Women, most o f whom
were assistant cashiers, represented about oneeighth of the total.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
In recent years, banks have shown a prefer­
ence for college graduates in ^electing persons
to be trained for officer positions. However, out­
standing individuals with experience in banking,
even though not college graduates, are sometimes
considered for executive trainee jobs.
Specialized college education is seldom required
for executive trainee positions. A business ad­
ministration curriculum with a major in bank­
ing is excellent preparation. A liberal arts cur­
riculum with courses in accounting, economics,
commercial law, finance, political science, and
statistics is also good preparation.
Most large city banks have well-organized
officer-training programs ranging from 6 months
to 2 years in length. Trainees may work as
credit or investment analysts, or be rotated
among various jobs in several bank departments
to get the “ feel” of banking and to help bank
officers determine the position for which each
employee is best suited. Though many small
banks cannot operate formal officer-trainee pro­
grams, they usually have some plan to help
promising employees gain enough understand­
ing of various operations to qualify for later
Advancement to officer positions may come
slowly in small town banks, which are often
operated largely as family enterprises and in
which little turnover occurs. In large city banks
with special training programs, initial promo­
tions may come more quickly. However, many
years of service are usually required to obtain
the thorough knowledge of bank operations,
bank customers and the community essential for
senior officer positions.


Although experience, ability, and leadership
qualities receive great emphasis when promotions
are made, advancement may also be accelerated by
special study. Courses in every phase of bank­
ing are offered by the American Institute of
Banking, a long-established, industry-sponsored
school. The courses are usually offered locally,
and most banks pay the tuition fees for employees
who successfully complete their courses. More
advanced training is offered in programs spon­
sored jointly by universities and bankers’ asso­

Employment Outlook
The number of bank officers is expected to
increase rapidly throughout the 1960’s and the
early 1970’s. Many new positions will be cre­
ated by the expected expansion of banking activi­
ties. Others will develop because of the increas­
ing use of electronic computers which makes
possible more extensive analysis and planning
of banking operations and enables banks to pro­
vide new kinds of services. In addition, about
5,000 openings can be expected each year because
of the need to replace officers who retire or leave
their jobs for other reasons.
Most of the officer positions which become
available will be filled by promoting people who
have already acquired experience in banking
operations. Competition for such promotion is
likely to remain keen, particiularly in the largest
banks. Colleges graduates who meet the stand­
ards for executive trainees should find good
opportunities for entry positions, however.
See introductory section of this chapter for
more information on Employment Outlook,
Where Employed, Earnings and Working Con­
ditions, and Where To Go for More Information.

The widespread use of airplanes provided jobs
for about 300,000 persons in a variety of inter­
esting and responsible occupations in late 1962.
Some of these jobs, such as pilot, copilot, and
stewardess, are especially appealing to young
men and women.

Nature and Location of Civil Aviation Activities
Civil aviation services are provided by many
different types of organizations for a variety of
purposes. The scheduled airlines (those which
operate regularly scheduled flights over pre­
scribed routes) provide transportation for pas­
sengers, cargo, and mail. Other airlines, called
supplemental airlines, provide charter and nonscheduled service for passengers and cargo. A
wide range of other civil aviation activities are
conducted in the field of general aviation, includ­
ing the use of company-owned aircraft to transport
employees or cargo (business flyin g); spraying
insecticides, fertilizers, or seed on land, crops, or
forest (crop dusting); charter service in small
aircraft (air-taxi operations); and inspection o f
pipelines and powerlines for breaks. In addition
to these flying activities, general aviation includes
maintenance and repair activities conducted by
repair stations licensed by the Government to
work on general aviation aircraft (certificated
repair stations).
Civil aviation activities also include the reg­
ulatory functions of the Federal Aviation Agency
(F A A ), and the Civil Aeronautics Board (C A B )
—both Federal Government agencies. The F A A
develops air safety regulations, inspects and
tests airplanes and airline facilities, provides
ground electronic guidance equipment, and gives
tests for licenses to personnel such as pilots,
copilots, flight engineers, dispatchers, and air­
plane mechanics. The CAB establishes policy
concerning matters such as airline rates and
routes and investigates accidents.
692-408 O— 63-------37

The 52 scheduled airlines were the largest
employers of air transportation workers in 1962,
with about 172,500 workers. O f these, about 80
percent (140,000) were employed to fly and serv­
ice aircraft and passengers on domestic routes—
between cities in the United States. About 28,500
other workers handled the operations o f the
scheduled airlines which flew international
routes. The remaining workers were employed
by airlines that handled only cargo. About half
of all scheduled airline employees worked for
the four largest domestic airlines.
In addition to scheduled airline employees,
about 7,000 workers— all in ground occupations
—were employed in the United States by foreign
airlines that operate between overseas points and
the United States.
An additional 2,200 workers were employed
by 15 supplemental airlines. These workers were
in many of the same occupations as scheduled
airline workers.
An estimated 70,000 workers—nearly all pilots,
copilots, and airplane mechanics—were employed
in general aviation operations. Nearly 40 percent
of these workers (28,000) were employed in cer­
tificated repair stations. Another 25 percent
(17,000) were engaged in business flying. About
7,500 worked for firms that gave flight instruc­
tion; approximately 5,400 were in crop dusting
activities; and nearly 5,000 were employed by
air-taxi operators. The remaining 7,000 work­
ers were in other general aviation activities, such
as test flying or inspecting pipelines for breaks.
The F A A employed about 45,000 people and
the CAB about 1,000, in late 1962. F A A employ­
ees worked mainly in occupations relating to the
direction of air traffic, and the installation and
maintenance of mechanical and electronic equip­
ment used to control traffic. CAB workers were
employed mainly in administrative and clerical
jobs concerned with the economic regulation of
the airlines, supervision of international air trans­
portation matters, promotion of air safety, and
investigation of accidents.

Civil aviation workers are employed in every
State, but an estimated half work in five States:
New York, California, Florida, Illinois, and
Texas. Some of the reasons for the employment
concentration in these States are their large pop­
ulations and geographic areas, their large num­
bers of airports and aircraft registrations, and
the existence of major airline aircraft overhaul

C H A R T 33

T h o u s a n d s o f w o r k e r s with s c h e d u l e d a i r l i n e s , 1962








M echanics

Pilots and

Stewards, stewardes ses,
and pursers

Civil Aviation Occupations
In addition to employing the largest number
of air transportation workers, the scheduled air­
lines employ workers in the widest variety of
occupations. O f the more than 170,000 employed by
the scheduled airlines in late 1962, about 4 out
of 5 worked in ground occupations.
Mechanics and other aircraft maintenance
personnel was the largest occupational category,
with 20 percent of scheduled airline employment.
(See chart 33.) About 17 percent of all sched­
uled airline workers were traffic agents and
clerks, and almost 3 percent worked at airline
ground stations as communications personnel and
dispatchers. The remaining workers in ground
occupational categories (about 43 percent) were
employed as cargo and freight handlers, custodial
and other aircraft-servicing personnel, and office,
administrative, and professional personnel.
Pilots and copilots was the largest flight occu­
pation, with about 8 percent of airline workers;
stewardesses and stewards comprised another 7
percent; and flight engineers accounted for the
About 45 percent of general aviation workers
were pilots or copilots, and a similar proportion
were airplane mechanics. The great majority of
the mechanics were employed in certificated
repair stations. The remaining 10 percent of gen­
eral aviation workers were employed in clerical
or administrative jobs.
In the Federal Government, the largest group
o f civil aviation workers were in air traffic servic­
ing work. Nearly 18,000 workers were employed
in this category. Most of these workers— about
12,500—were air traffic controllers.
group o f about 4,500 workers were flight service
station specialists.
A detailed description of the duties, training,
qualifications, employment outlook, earnings,

G r o u n d r a d i o o p e ra to rs
a n d te le ty p is ts


and working conditions for each of the following
air transportation jobs appear in the later sec­
tions of this chapter: (1) pilots and copilots, (2)
flight engineers, (3) stewardesses, (4) airplane
mechanics, (5) airline dispatchers, (6) air traffic
controllers, (7) ground radio operators and tele­
typists, and (8) traffic agents and clerks.

Employment Outlook
The total number of workers in civil aviation
occupations is expected to increase rapidly in the
next 10 to 15 years, but the rates of growth among
the major civil aviation divisions will differ. By
1970, employment in general aviation and in the
Federal Government’s civil aviation activities is
likely to grow by nearly 50 percent over the 1962
level, and this rapid growth will continue over
the longer run. In contrast, by 1970, airline
employment is expected to grow only moderately.
Over the longer run, the rate of airline employ­
ment growth is likely to slow down because the
introduction of a supersonic transport plane will
enable the airlines to fly more traffic without
corresponding expansion in the number of airline
planes and workers.



General aviation employment is expected to
show a rapid rise, mainly because the anticipated
greater demand for general aviation services will
lead to an increase in the number of aircraft.
More than 100,000 general aviation aircraft will
be flying by 1970— an increase of about 25,000
over the number in 1962—according to the F A A.
Most of this increase will occur in business fly­
ing, which will require about 10,000 new employ­
ees, mainly well qualified pilots. A similar num­
ber of new job openings will occur in air-taxi
operations, largely because of the demand for
air transportation in cities not serviced by the
scheduled airlines. These jobs will be about
equally divided between qualified pilots and
copilots, and airplane mechanics. Another 10,000
job openings—practically all for airplane
mechanics—will occur in certificated repair sta­
tions because of the need for additional mainte­
nance and repair services by a larger general avi­
ation fleet. A few thousand additional employees
—mainly pilots—will be needed by crop dusters,
and operators who give flight instruction and
engage in patrol and survey flying.
Increases in Federal Government employment
of civil aviation workers will stem from growth
in general aviation activity and airline traffic.
About half of the employment increase is
expected to be among electronic technicians, engi­
neers, and other personnel who install, maintain,
and repair the visual and electronic components
of the airways. In addition, there will be thou­
sands of job openings in the F A A and CAB for
clerical and administrative personnel, air traffic
controllers, and flight service station specialists.
Airline employment growth will result from
anticipated increases in passenger and cargo
traffic. The F A A estimates that, by 1975, the
scheduled airlines will fly about twice the number
of revenue passenger miles flown in 1962. An
even larger increase is expected in air cargo
traffic which, however, represents a relatively
small percent o f total traffic. Among the factors
which will contribute to increased air travel are
a larger population, increased consumer purchas­
ing power, the trend toward longer vacations,
the greater use of air travel by businessmen,
faster flights on jet aircraft which will save
considerable time in long-distance travel, and
more low-cost air coach and shuttle services.

As in the past, airline occupations will grow at
different rates. Occupations such as steward­
ess and cargo and baggage handler, which
provide services for passengers and cargo directly,
will grow very rapidly. However, employment in
these occupations is not expected to increase as
fast as the increases in traffic for several reasons.
For example, more widespread installation of
mechanical equipment, such as conveyors, will
permit airlines to move greatly increased
amounts of baggage and cargo without compar­
able growth in employment o f baggage and cargo
handlers. Shuttle flights, which offer fewer
in-flight services than first-class flights, will
permit airlines to fly greatly increased numbers of
passengers without a corresponding rise in
employment of flight attendants.
Some airline occupational groups, particularly
those involving the operation and maintenance
of aircraft, are expected to show little or no
employment growth over the decade. Jet planes,
which will continue to be substituted for pistonengine planes, permit airlines to handle increas­
ing amounts of traffic with no overall increase
in the number of planes. However, even in these
because of retirements and deaths, for example,
will result in thousands of job opportunities for
new workers annually in the years ahead.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Earnings among various civil aviation occupa­
tions vary greatly because of such factors as skill
requirements, length of experience, and amount
of responsibility for safe and efficient operations.
Within particular occupations, earnings vary
according to the type of civil aviation activity.
The statements on individual occupations which
follow contain detailed discussions of earnings.
As a rule, employees and their immediate
families are entitled to a limited amount of free
or reduced fare transportation on their compan­
ies’ flights, depending on the employees’ length
of service. In addition, they may fly at greatly
reduced rates with other airlines. Flight per­
sonnel may be away from their home bases about
a third or more of the time. When they are away
from home, the airlines either provide living
accommodations or pay expenses.



Airlines operate flights at all hours of the day
and night. Personnel in some occupations, there­
fore, often have irregular work schedules. Maxi­
mum hours of work per month for workers in
flight occupations have been established by the
F A A as a safety precaution against fatigue. In
addition, union-company agreements often stipu­
late that these people be paid for a minimum
number of hours each month, to guarantee a
substantial proportion of their normal earnings.
Ground personnel who work as dispatchers,
mechanics, traffic agents, communications oper­
ators, and in administrative jobs, usually work
a 5-day, 40-hour week. Their working hours,
however, often include nights, weekends, or holi­
days. A ir traffic controllers work a 5-day, 40hour week; they are periodically assigned to
night, weekend, and holiday work. Ground per­
sonnel generally receive extra pay for overtime
work, or compensatory time off.
In domestic operations, employees usually
receive 2 or 3 weeks’ vacation with pay, depend­
ing upon length o f service. Most flight person­
nel in international operations get a month’s
vacation. Employees also receive paid sick leave
and retirement, insurance, and hospitalization
benefits. F A A and CAB employees are entitled
to the same benefits as other Federal personnel,
including from 13 to 26 days of vacation leave
and 13 days of sick leave a year, as well as
retirement, life insurance, and health benefits.
Many of the workers in air transportation
are union members. These unions are identified

in the statements covering the individual occupa­

Where To Go for More Information
Information about job openings in a particular
airline and the qualifications required may be
obtained by writing to the personnel manager
of the company. Addresses of individual com­
panies are available from the A ir Transport
Association of America, 1000 Connecticut Ave.
NW., Washington, D C ., 20036.
Inquiries regarding jobs with the Federal
Aviation Agency should be addressed to the
Personnel Officer, Federal Aviation Agency, at
any of the following addresses:
Region 1.

Federal Building, New York
International Airport,
Jamaica, Long Island, N.Y., 11400.

Region 2.

Box 1689, Fort Worth, Tex., 46101.

Region 3.

4825 Troost Ave., Kansas City, Mo., 64110.

Region 4.

Box 90007, Airport Station, Los Angeles,
Calif., 90045.

Region 5.

Box 440, Anchorage, Alaska, 99501.

Region 6.

Box 4009, Honolulu, Hawaii, 96812.

National Aviation Facilities Center, Atlantic City,
N.J., 08400.
Aeronautical Center,
Okla., 73100.





Information concerning FAA-approved schools
offering training for work as an airplane
mechanic, pilot, or in other technical fields related
to aviation may be obtained from the Correspond­
ence Inquiry Branch, MS-126, Federal Aviation
Agency, Washington, D.C., 20553.

Pilots and Copilots
(D .O .T. 0-41.10 and .12)

Nature of Work
The men who have the responsibility for flying
a multimillion dollar plane “and transporting as
many as 125 passengers safely are the pilot and
copilot. The pilot (called “ captain” by the air­
lines) operates the controls and performs other
tasks necessary for getting a plane into the air,
keeping it on course, and landing it safely. He
supervises a crew which usually includes—in
addition to the copilot—a flight engineer and

flight attendants. The copilot is second in com­
mand. He is present on airline flights to assist
the captain in air-to-ground communications,
monitoring flight and engine instruments, and
to operate the controls of the plane. On some jets,
there may be two copilots in addition to the other
crew members.
Both captain and copilot must do a great deal
o f planning before their plane may take off.
Before each flight, they confer with the company



meteorologist about weather conditions and, in
cooperation with the airline dispatcher, they
prepare a flight plan along a route and at alti­
tudes which offer the best weather and wind
conditions so that a safe, fast, and smooth flight
will be possible. This flight plan must be approved
by Federal Aviation Agency (F A A ) air traffic
control personnel. The copilot plots the course
to be flown and computes the flying time between
various points. Just prior to takeoff, both men
check the operation o f each engine and the func­
tioning o f the plane’s many instruments, controls,
and electronic and mechanical systems.
During the flight, the captain or copilot
reports, by radio, to ground control stations,
regarding their altitude, air speed, weather condi­
tions, and other flight details. The captain also

supervises the navigation for the flight and keeps
close watch on the many instruments which indi­
cate the plane’s fuel load and the condition of
the engines, controls, electronic equipment, and
landing gear. The copilot assists in these duties.
Before landing, the captain or the copilot
perform such duties as rechecking the operation
o f the landing gear and requesting landing
clearance from air traffic control personnel. I f
visibility, when landing, is limited, the captain
must rely solely on instruments, such as radar.
Both men must complete a flight report and file
trip records in the airline office when the flight
is ended.
Some pilots, employed by airlines as “ check
pilots” , make at least two flights a year with each
captain to observe his proficiency and adherence

Flight crew operate controls of jet airliner

to F A A flight regulations and company policies.
Airlines employ some pilots to fly planes leased
to private corporations. Airlines also employ
pilots as instructors to train both new and experi­
enced pilots in the use of new equipment.
Pilots employed in general aviation usually
fly smaller planes that carry fewer passengers
and less cargo. These pilots seldom have the
assistance of flight crews. In addition to flying,
they may perform minor maintenance and repair
w ork on their planes. In some cases, such as in
business flying, they may mingle with and act as
host to their passengers. Pilots, who are selfemployed, such as air-taxi operators, in addition
to flying and doing some maintenance work, have
duties similar to those of other small businessmen.

Where Employed
The scheduled airlines employed nearly 13,500
pilots and copilots in late 1962. In addition,
approximately 700 pilots were employed by the
certificated supplemental airlines (airlines that
provide charter and nonscheduled service).
An estimated 37,000 pilots and copilots (includ­
ing some who work part time) were employed
in general aviation in early 1963. Several
thousand worked in business flying, and in forhire operations. About 4,000 pilots were employed
as crop dusters. The Federal Government
employed approximately 700 pilots (about half
in the F A A ) to perform a variety of services,
such as examining applicants for pilots’ licenses,
inspecting navigation facilities along Federal
airways, testing planes that are newly designed
or have major modifications, enforcing game laws,
fighting forest fires, and patrolling national
boundaries. In addition, a few thousand pilots
were employed by companies to inspect pipelines
and installations for oil companies, and to pro­
vide other aerial services such as private flight
instruction, and flights for sightseeing, sky writ­
ing, and aerial photography. A small number
worked for aircraft manufacturers as test pilots.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
To do any type of commercial flying, pilots
or copilots must be licensed by the F A A . A ir­
line captains must have an “ airline transport
pilot’s” license. Copilots, and pilots who do not


work for the airlines, must have a “ commercial
airplane pilot’s” license. In addition, airline
copilots, and pilots who are subject to F A A
instrument flight regulations or who anticipate
flying on instruments when the weather is bad,
must have an “ instrument rating.” Pilots and
copilots must also have a rating for the class of
plane they can fly (single-engine, multiengine,
or seaplane) and for the specific type of plane
they can fly, such as D C-6 or Boeing 707.
To qualify for a license as a commercial pilot,
applicants must be at least 18 years old and have
at least 200 hours of flight experience. To obtain
an instrument rating, applicants must have at
least 40 hours of instrument flying time. A ppli­
cants for an airline transport pilots’ license must
be at least 23 years old and have a total of 1,200
hours of flight time, including night flying and
instrument time.
Before a person may receive any license or
rating, he must pass a physical examination and
a written test given by the F A A covering such
subjects as principles of safe flight operations,
Civil Air Regulations, navigation principles,
radio operation, and meteorology. He must also
submit proof that he has completed the minimum
flight-time requirements and, in a practical test,
demonstrate flying skill and technical competence.
His certification as a professional pilot remains
in effect as long as he can pass an annual physical
examination and the periodic tests of his flying
skills, required by Government regulation. An
airline transport pilot’s license expires when the
pilot reaches his 60th birthday.
A young man may obtain the knowledge, skills,
and flight experience necessary to become a pilot
through military service or from a private flying
school. Graduation from flying schools approved
by the F A A satisfies the flight experience
requirements for licensing. Applicants who have
appropriate military flight training and experi­
ence are required to pass only the Civil Air Regu­
lations examination if they apply for a license
within a year after leaving the service. Those
trained in the armed services have the added
opportunity to gain experience and accumulate
flying time on large aircraft similar to those used
by the airlines.
As a rule, applicants for a copilot job with the
airlines must be between 20 and 27 years old,



5 feet 7 inches to 6 feet 4 inches tall, and weigh
between 140 and 200 pounds. A ll applicants must
be high school graduates; some airlines require
2 years o f college and prefer to hire college grad­
uates. Physical requirements for pilots, especi­
ally in scheduled airline employment, are very
high. They must have normal (20/20) vision
without the aid of glasses, good hearing, out­
standing physical stamina, and no physical han­
dicaps that would prevent quick reactions. Since
flying large aircraft places great responsibilities
upon a pilot, the airlines use psychological tests
to determine an applicant’s alertness, emotional
stability and maturity, and his ability to assume
responsibility, command respect, and make quick
decisions and accurate judgments under pressure.
Men hired by the scheduled airlines (and by
some of the larger supplemental airlines) usually
start as copilots, although in a few airlines they
may begin as flight engineers. An applicant for
a copilot’s job with a scheduled airline often must
have more than the F A A minimum qualifications
for commercial pilot licensing. For example,
although the F A A requires only 200 flying hours
to qualify for such a license, the airlines generally
require from 500 to 1,000 flying hours. Airlines
also require a “ restricted” radio-telephone oper­
ator permit, issued by the Federal Communica­
tions Commission, which allows the holder to
operate the plane’s radio.
Pilots employed in business flying are
required to have a commercial pilot’s license. In
addition, some employers require their pilots to
have instrument ratings. Because these pilots
usually mingle with their passengers, they must
have pleasant personalities.
All newly hired airline copilots go through
company orientation courses. In addition, some
airlines give beginning copilots or flight engi­
neers from 3 to 10 weeks of training on company
planes before assigning them to a scheduled
flight. Trainees also receive classroom instruction
in subjects such as flight theory, radio oper­
ation, meteorology, Civil A ir Begulations, and
airline operations.
The beginning copilot is generally permitted
only limited responsibility, such as operating the
flight controls in good weather over a route that
is easy to navigate. As he gains experience and
skill, his responsibilities are gradually increased
and he is promoted to copilot on larger, more

modern aircraft. When he has proved his skill,
accumulated sufficient experience and seniority,
and passed the test for an airline transport
pilot’s license, a copilot may advance to captain
as openings arise. A minimum of 2 or 3 years’
service is required for promotion but, in actual
practice, advancement often takes at least 5 to 10
years or longer. The new captain works first on
his airline’s older equipment and, as openings
arise, he is advanced to larger, more modern
A few opportunities exist for captains with
administrative ability to advance to chief pilot,
flight operations manager, and other supervisory
and executive jobs. Most airline captains, how­
ever, spend their entire careers flying. As they
increase their seniority, they obtain a better
selection of flight routes, types of aircraft, and
schedules which offer higher earnings. Some
pilots may gq into business for themselves if they
have adequate financial resources and business
ability. They may operate their own flying
schools or air-taxi and other aerial services. Pilots
may also shift to administrative and inspection
jobs in aircraft manufacturing and Government
aviation agencies, or become dispatchers for an
airline when they are no longer able to fly.

Employment Outlook
Little change in the employment of airline
pilots is expected in the next 10 to 15 years. Thus,
the only new employment opportunities that are
likely to occur in this period will be three or four
hundred job openings annually resulting from the
need to replace pilots who transfer to other fields
of work, retire, or die. The number of pilots
will be affected by the larger, faster, and more
efficient jet planes being used which enable a
pilot to fly many more passenger and cargo miles
than he can in piston aircraft. Thus, although
the number of passenger and cargo miles is
expected to continue to grow in the remainder
of the 1960’s, employment o f pilots will remain
about the same. The expected introduction o f
supersonic transport planes by the end of the dec­
ade will result in relatively stable employment of
airline pilots and copilots in the longer run.
Employment of pilots outside of the scheduled
airlines is expected to grow rapidly, particularly
in business flying, crop dusting, air-taxi oper­



ations, and patrol and survey flying. Growth in
these areas will stem from expansion in the use
o f aircraft to perform these general aviation

Earnings and Working Conditions
Captains and copilots are among the highest
paid wage earners in the Nation. Those employed
by the scheduled airlines averaged about $17,500
a year in domestic air transportation and nearly
$23,000 in international operations, in late 1962.
Most of the senior captains on large aircraft
earned well over $20,000 a year; those assigned to
jet aircraft may earn more than $30,000. Pilots
employed by the scheduled airlines generally earn
more than those employed elsewhere, although
pilots who work for supplemental airlines may
earn almost as much. Some experienced copilots
were earning as much as $20,000 a year in domes­
tic flying and more than $21,500 in international
flying in late 1961.
The earnings of captains and copilots depend
on factors such as the type, size, and speed of the
planes they fly, the number of hours and miles
flown, and their length of service. They receive
additional pay for night and international flights.
Captains and airline copilots with at least 3 years
of service are guaranteed minimum monthly earn­
ings which represent a substantial proportion of
their earnings.

Under the Federal Aviation Act, airline pilots
cannot fly more than 85 hours a month. In prac­
tice, pilots and copilots fly approximately 60 hours
a month and spend another 20 to 25 hours a month
on ground duties.
Some pilots prefer the shorter distance flying
usually associated with the local airlines and
commercial flying activities such as air-taxi
operations, because they are likely to spend less
time away from their home bases and fly mostly
during the daytime. These pilots, however, have
the added strain of making more takeoffs and
landings daily.
Although flying does not involve much physical
effort, the pilot is often subject to stress because
of his great responsibility. He must be constantly
alert and prepared to make decisions quickly.
Poor weather conditions can also make his work
more difficult.
Nearly all airline pilots are members of the Air
Line Pilots Association International.

Where To Go for More Information
Air Line Pilots Association International,
55th St. and Cicero Ave., Chicago, 111., 60600.

See the introductory section for additional
sources of information and for general informa­
tion on supplementary benefits and working

Flight Engineers
(D .O .T. 5-80.100)

Nature of Work and Where Employed
The flight engineer monitors the operation of
the different mechanical and electrical devices
aboard the airplane. Before takeoffs, he may
inspect the tires and other outside parts of the
plane and make sure that the plane’s fuel tanks
have been properly filled. In the plane, he assists
the pilot and copilot in making preflight checks
of instruments and equipment. Once the plane is
in the air, the flight engineer watches and oper­
ates many instruments and devices to check the
performance of the engines and the air-condi­
tioning, pressurizing, and electrical systems. In
addition, he keeps records of engine performance

and fuel consumption. He reports any mechani­
cal difficulties to the pilot and, if possible, makes
emergency repairs. Upon landing, he makes
certain that mechanical troubles that may have
developed are repaired by a mechanic. Flight
engineers employed by the smaller airlines may
have to make minor repairs themselves at those
few airports where mechanics are not stationed.
Flight engineers are employed on all com­
mercial planes that have a maximum takeoff
weight of more than 80,000 pounds, which
includes almost all four-engine planes, and twoengine jet planes. In late 1962, almost all of
the nearly 4,300 flight engineers were working for



the major scheduled airlines, which operate
virtually all such planes. Most flight engineers
are stationed in or near large cities where long­
distance flights originate and terminate.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
A ll flight engineers must be licensed by the
Federal Aviation Agency (F A A ). A man can
qualify for a flight engineer’s certificate if he
has had 2 years o f training or 3 years of work
experience in the maintenance, repair, and over­
haul of aircraft and engines, including a mini­
mum of 6 months’ training or a year of experi­
ence on four-engine piston and jet planes. He
may also qualify with at least 200 hours of flight
time as a captain of a four-engine piston or jet
plane, or with 100 hours o f experience as a flight
engineer in the Armed Forces. A third method
o f qualifying is to complete a course of ground
and flight instruction approved by the FA A .
In addition to such experience or training, an
applicant for a license must pass a written test
on flight theory, engine and aircraft performance,
fuel requirements, weather as it affects engine
operation, and maintenance procedures. In a
practical flight test on a four-engine plane, he
must demonstrate his skill in performing pre­
flight duties of a flight engineer and normal and
emergency in-flight duties and procedures. He
must also pass a rigid physical examination every
year. Some airlines give experienced flight engi­
neers employed on jets pilot training to enable
these flight engineers to qualify for a commer­
cial pilot’s license or an airline transport pilot’s
Young men can acquire the knowledge and
skills necessary to qualify as airline flight engi­
neers through military training as airplane
pilots, mechanics, or flight engineers. They may
also attend a civilian ground school and then
gain experience as an airplane mechanic.
For jobs as flight engineers, airlines generally
prefer men 21 to 35 years of age, from 5 feet
7 inches to 6 feet 4 inches tall, and in excellent
physical condition. They require a high school
education but prefer men with 2 or more years
of college. Airlines prefer to hire young men
who already have a flight engineer certificate,
although they may select applicants who have a

commercial pilot’s license and give them
additional training.
A flight engineer can become a chief flight engi­
neer for his airline. His advancement, however,
comes mainly by gaining enough seniority to
enable him to select the routes and schedules
which offer the highest earnings. In airlines that
employ pilot-qualified flight engineers, he can be
promoted to copilot, and then follow the regular
line of advancement open to other copilots.

Employment Outlook
Employment of flight engineers is not
expected to change much during the remainder
of the 1960’s and in the longer run. (This pro­
jection assumes that the scheduled airline flight
crew on airplanes weighing more than 80,000
pounds will be made up of three men. It is
assumed further that the third man will continue
to be classified as a flight engineer even though he
has some pilot qualifications.) Increasing use will
be made of faster, more efficient jet planes which
allow a flight engineer to fly more passenger and
cargo miles in the course of a working month
than he could in a piston engine plane. The
expected introduction of supersonic transport
planes by the end of the 1960’s will also restrict
employment growth.
Some increase in employment in this occupation
will result if the airlines replace light aircraft
with heavier aircraft weighing more than 80,000
pounds, or if new smaller jets, scheduled for
introduction in 1965, require a flight engineer.

Earnings and Working Conditions
The earnings of flight engineers in late 1962
ranged from about $550 a month for new employ­
ees to $1,600 for experienced flight engineers on
jet aircraft on international flights. Many flight
engineers earned between $1,000 and $1,500 a
month. Average monthly earnings for all flight
engineers in domestic operations was nearly
$1,000; those employed on international flights
averaged nearly $1,400. The earnings of flight
engineers depend upon factors such as size, speed,
and type of the plane; hours and miles flown;
length of service; and the type of flight (such as
night or international). Engineers are guaran­


teed minimum monthly earnings, which repre­
sent a substantial proportion o f their earnings.
Their flight time is restricted, under the Federal
Aviation Act, to 85 hours a month. Flight engi­
neers in international operations are limited
flying to 100 hours a month, 300 hours every 90
days, or 350 hours every 90 days, depending on
the size o f the flight crew.
Most flight engineers belong to the Flight
Engineers’ International Association. Some are

represented by the International Association of
W h e re To G o fo r M ore Info rm ation
Flight Engineers’ International Association,
100 Indiana Ave. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20001.

See the introductory section for additional
sources of information and for general informa­
tion on supplementary benefits and working

(D.O .T. 2-25.37)

N ature of W o rk a n d W here Em p lo ye d

Stewardesses or stewards (sometimes called
flight attendants) are aboard almost all passen­
ger planes operated by the commercial airlines.
Their job is to make the passengers’ flight safe,
comfortable, and enjoyable. Like other flight
personnel, they are responsible to the captain.
Before each flight, the stewardess attends the
briefing of the flight crew. She sees that the
passenger cabin is in order, that supplies and
emergency passenger gear are aboard, and that
necessary food and beverages are in the galley.
As the passengers come aboard, she greets them,
checks their tickets, and assists them with their
coats and small luggage. On some flights, she
may sell tickets.
During the flight, the stewardess makes cer­
tain that seat belts are fastened and gives safety
instructions when required. She answers ques­
tions about the flight and weather, distributes
reading matter and pillows, helps care for small
children and babies, and keeps the cabin neat. On
some flights, she heats and serves meals that have
been previously cooked. On other flights she may
prepare, sell, and serve cocktails. After the flight,
she completes flight reports. On international
flights, she also gives Gustoms information,
instructs passengers on the use of emergency
equipment, and repeats instructions in an appro­
priate foreign language to accommodate foreign
About 11,300 stewardesses and 1,000 stewards
worked for the scheduled airlines in late 1962.
About 80 percent were employed by the domestic
airlines, and the rest worked for international

Airline stewardess serves dinner

lines. Nearly all stewards were employed on
overseas flights. Airliners generally carry one
to six flight attendants, depending on the size of
the plane and what proportion o f the flight is
economy or first-class. Most flight attendants are
stationed in major cities at the airlines’ main
bases. A few who serve on international flights
are based in foreign countries.
T ra in in g , O th e r Q u a lifica tio n s, a n d A d v a n ce m e n t

Because stewardesses are in constant contact
with passengers, the airlines place great stress
on hiring young women who are attractive,
poised, tactful, and resourceful. As a rule, appli­
cants must be 20 to 27 years old, 5 feet 2 inches
to 5 feet 8 inches tall, with weight in proportion
to height (but not to exceed 140 pounds), and
in excellent health. They must also have a pleas­
ant speaking voice and good vision. Most major
airlines require that stewardesses be unmarried



and require them to resign when they marry or
shortly afterwards.
Applicants for stewardess’ jobs must have at
least a high school education. Those with 2 years
of college, nurses’ training, or business experi­
ence in dealing with the public are preferred.
Stewardesses who work for international airlines
generally must be able to speak an appropriate
foreign language fluently.
Most large airlines give newly hired stew­
ardesses about 5 weeks’ training in their own
schools. Girls may receive free transportation
to the training centers and also may receive an
allowance while in attendance. Training includes
classes in flight regulations and duties, company
operations and schedules, emergency procedures
and first aid, and personal grooming. Addi­
tional courses in passport and customs regula­
tions are given trainees for the international
routes. Toward the end of their training, stu­
dents go on practice flights and perform their
duties under actual flight conditions.
A few airlines which do not operate their
own schools may employ graduates who have
paid for their own training at private steward­
esses schools. Girls interested in becoming stew­
ardesses should check with the airline of their
choice before entering a private school to be
sure they have the necessary qualifications for
the airline and that the school’s training is
Immediately upon completing their training,
stewardesses report for work at one of their air­
line’s main bases. They serve on probation for
about 6 months, and an experienced stewardess
usually works with them on their first flights.
Before they are assigned to a regular flight, they
may work as reserve flight attendants, during
which time they serve on extra flights or replace
stewardesses who are sick or on vacation.
Stewardesses may advance to jobs as first
stewardess or purser, supervising stewardess,
stewardess instructor, or recruiting representa­
tive. Advancement opportunities often come
quickly because stewardesses work only about
2 or 3 years, on the average, and then resign to
get married. Stewardesses who can no longer
qualify for flying, such as those who marry, may
obtain jobs in other departments such as sales or
public relations.

Employment Outlook
Young women will have several thousands of
opportunities to get jobs as stewardesses each
year in the immediate future and in the longer
run. Most of these openings will occur as girls
marry or leave the occupation for other reasons.
(About 40 percent of the employed stewardesses
leave their jobs each year.) In addition, total
employment of stewardesses will grow rapidly as
a result of the anticipated large increase in pas­
senger traffic.
Young women interested in becoming steward­
esses should realize that thousands of girls apply
for this type of work each year, because of the
glamour attached to the occupation. Despite the
large number of applicants, the airlines find it
difficult to obtain enough young women who can
meet their high standards of attractiveness, per­
sonality, and intelligence.

Earnings and Working Conditions
An examination of union-management con­
tracts covering several large domestic and inter­
national airlines indicates that in 1962 begin­
ning stewardesses earned approximately $325 to
$395 a month for 85 hours of flying time. Stew­
ardesses with 2 years’ experience earned approxi­
mately $365 to $415 a month. Those assigned to
jet flights usually earned more.
A ll stewardesses employed on domestic flights
averaged $375 a month; those working on inter­
national flights averaged about $460.
Since commercial airlines operate around the
clock, 365 days a year, stewardesses usually work
irregular hours. They may work at night, on
holidays, and on weekends. They are usually
limited to 85 hours of flight time a month. In
addition, they devote up to 35 hours a month to
ground duties. As a result of irregular hours
and limitations on the amount of flying time,
some stewardesses may have 15 or more days off
each month. O f course, some time off may occur
between flights while away from home.
Airlines generally use the seniority bidding
system for assigning home bases, flight schedules,
and routes. Stewardesses with the longest serv­
ice, therefore, get the more desirable flights.



The stewardess’ occupation is exciting and
glamorous, with opportunities to meet interesting
passengers and to see new places. However, the
work can be strenuous and trying. A stewardess
may be on her feet during a large part of the
flight. She must remain pleasant and efficient
during the entire flight, regardless of how tired
she may be.

Most flight attendants are members o f either
the A ir Line Stewards and Stewardesses Associa­
tion of the Transport Workers Union of America,
or the Stewards and Stewardesses Division of the
Air Line Pilots Association International.
See introductory section for general informa­
tion on supplementary benefits and working

Airplane Mechanics
(D .O .T. 5-80.100, .120 and .130)

N ature of W ork

Airplane mechanics have the important job
o f keeping airplanes operating safely and effi­
ciently. Mechanics employed by the airlines
work either at the larger airline terminals making
emergency repairs on aircraft (line-maintenance
work) or at an airline main overhaul base where
they make major repairs or perform the periodic
inspections that are necessary on all aircraft.
These mechanics may specialize in work on a
particular part of the airplane such as propellers,
landing gear, hydraulic equipment, radio and
radar, instruments, or on sheet metal work. They
frequently take apart a complex airplane com­
ponent, replace damaged or worn parts, put the
component together, and test it to make sure that
it is operating perfectly.
A line-maintenance mechanic may be instructed
by the flight engineer or lead mechanic as to the
kinds of repairs to make, or he may examine the
aircraft thoroughly to discover the cause of mal­
function. He then makes the necessary repairs
or adjustments, or he may install a new part; for
instance, he may replace an entire engine when it
cannot be fixed quickly.
mechanics must be all-round mechanics able to
make repairs on all parts o f the plane. They
may also have to do maintenance work such as
changing oil or cleaning spark plugs.
Airplane mechanics employed in general avi­
ation usually do maintenance and repair work
comparable with the work performed by linemaintenance mechanics. However, the planes
which these mechanics service may be smaller
and less complex than those flown by the airlines.
One mechanic frequently does the entire serv­
icing job with little supervision, and he works on

Airplane mechanics adjust jet engine

many different types of planes and engines.
Mechanics who work for employers such as cer­
tificated supplemental airlines, air-taxi operators,
and independent repair shops may also do over­
haul work. Independent repair shops usually
specialize in doing engine, instrument, or air­
frame overhaul. (The airframe consists o f the
plane’s fuselage, wings, landing gear, and other
parts which are not part of the engine, propeller,
or instruments.)
Airplane mechanics use many different kinds of
tools in their work. These may range from sim­
ple handtools, such as screwdrivers, wrenches


and pliers, to large and expensive machines and
equipment designed to diagnose troubles and
help the mechanic correct them. Examples of
such equipment are propeller grinding machines
and magnetic and black light inspection equip­
ment designed to detect flaws and cracks in metal

Where Employed
Nearly 34,200 mechanics were employed by the
scheduled airlines in late 1962. An estimated
25.000 mechanics and supervisory mechanics were
employed by independent repair shops. A few
thousand mechanics also were employed by cer­
tificated supplemental airlines, crop-dusting and
air-taxi firms, and businesses that use their own
planes to transport their key employees, or cargo.
Many other airplane mechanics work in aircraft
manufacturing plants. (These workers, whose
duties are somewT
hat different from those of air­
line mechanics, are discussed in the chapter on
Occupations in the Aircraft, Missile, and Space­
craft Field. See index for page numbers).
About 17,500 civilian airplane mechanics were
employed by the Air Force in late 1962. Another
10.000 worked for the Navy. The F A A employs
several hundred skilled men with maintenance
experience to inspect aircraft manufacturing
plants; examine airline and other commercial
flying organizations’ aircraft maintenance meth­
ods, training programs, and spare parts stock;
and test applicants for F A A mechanic licenses.
This agency also employs approximately 500 air­
plane mechanics to maintain its own planes. Most
of these men are employed at the F A A Aero­
nautical Center in Oklahoma City. Some mechan­
ics are employed by other Government agencies,
principally the National Aeronautics and Space
Most airline mechanics are employed in the
larger cities on the main airline routes. Each
airline usually has one main overhaul base where
more than half of its mechanics are employed.
Large concentrations of mechanics are employed
in cities such as New York, Chicago, Los Angeles,
San Francisco, and Miami, all of which are
important domestic and international air traffic

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Mechanics responsible for any repair or main­
tenance operation must be licensed by the F A A
as either an “ airframe mechanic” (to work on
the plane’s fuselage, covering surface, landing
gear, and control surfaces such as rudder or
ailerons) ; “ power-plant mechanic” (to work on
the plane’s engines), “ airframe and powerplant
mechanic” (to work on all parts of the plane),
or as a “ repairman” who is authorized to make
only specified repairs. Mechanics who tune radio
or radar equipment are required to have at least
a Federal Communications Commission Second
Class Radio Telephone Operator License.
A t least 18 months’ experience working with
airframes or engines is required to obtain an air­
frame or powerplant license and at least 30
months’ experience working with both engines
and airframes is required for the combined air­
frame and powerplant license. However, this
experience is not required of graduates of
mechanics’ schools approved by the F A A . In
addition to meeting these requirements, appli­
cants must pass a written test and give a practi­
cal demonstration of their ability to do the work.
Repairmen licenses are issued to mechanics who
are able to perform those maintenance and repair
operations for which their employers have
received F A A authorization.
Mechanics may prepare for the trade and their
licenses by working as trainees or apprentices,
or as helpers to experienced mechanics. The larger
airlines train apprentices or trainees in a care­
fully planned 3- or 4-year program of instruction
and work experience. Men who have learned air­
craft maintenance in the Armed Forces are usu­
ally given credit for this training towards the
requirements of apprenticeship or other on-thejob training programs.
For trainee or apprentice jobs, the airlines
prefer men between the ages of 20 and 30 who are
in good physical condition. Applicants should
have a high school or trade school education,
including courses in mathematics, physics, chem­
istry, and machine shop. Experience in auto­
motive repairs or other mechanical work is also
Other mechanics prepare for their trade by
graduating from an F A A approved mechanics
school. Most of these schools have an 18- to 24-



month program. Several colleges and univer­
sities also offer 2-year programs that prepare the
student for the F A A mechanic examinations and
for jobs as engineering aids and research and
development technicians in aircraft manufac­
Mechanics are generally required to have their
own handtools which they must pay for them­
selves. They usually acquire their tools gradually.
Several advancement possibilities are avail­
able to skilled mechanics employed by the sched­
uled airlines. The line of advancement is usually
mechanic, lead mechanic (or crew chief), inspec­
tor, lead inspector, shop foreman, and, in a few
cases, supervisory and executive positions. In
most shops, mechanics in the higher grade posi­
tions are required to have both airframe and
powerplant ratings. In many cases, the mechanic
must pass a company examination before he is
To qualify for jobs as F A A inspectors,
mechanics must have broad experience in main­
tenance and overhaul work, including supervision
over the maintenance of aircraft. Applicants for
this job must also have both airframe and powerplant ratings or a combined rating.

Employment Outlook
The number of airplane mechanics employed
by the scheduled airlines is not expected to change
much during the remainder of the 1960’s or in
the longer run. The number of airplane
mechanics depends primarily on the size of the
airline fleet. During recent years, a large number
of piston engine planes have been replaced by a

smaller number o f jet planes. Because this trend
is expected to continue, the size of the scheduled
airline fleet will be about the same in 1970 as in
The rapid growth anticipated in the amount
of general aviation flying will lead to an increase
in the number o f planes. Therefore, an increase
is expected in the number of mechanics employed
in firms providing general aviation services and
the independent repair shops that repair many
of these aircraft.
mechanics in the Federal Government will depend
largely on the size of the Government military
aircraft program.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Mechanics employed by the scheduled domes­
tic airlines earned, on the average, $580 a month
in late 1962. Other airplane mechanics generally
had lower average earnings.
Airline mechanics work in hangers or in other
indoor areas, whenever possible. However, when
repairs must be made quickly, which is sometimes
the case in line-maintenance work, mechanics may
work outdoors.
Mechanics employed by most major airlines
are covered by union agreements. Most of these
employees are members of the International
Association of Machinists. Many others belong
to the Transport Workers Union of America.
See introductory section for sources of addi­
tional information and for general information
on supplementary benefits and working con­

Airline Dispatchers
(D .O .T. 0-61.61)

Nature of Work and Where Employed
Dispatchers (sometimes called flight superin­
tendents) are employed by the airlines to coordi­
nate flight schedules and operations within an
assigned area and to make sure that all Federal
Aviation Agency (F A A ) and company flight and
safety regulations are observed. After examining
weather conditions, the dispatcher makes a pre­
liminary decision as to whether a flight may be

safely undertaken. He frequently must arrange
to notify the passengers and crew if there is any
change from the scheduled departure time. The
dispatcher confers with the captain about the
quantity of fuel needed, the best route and alti­
tude at which the plane will fly, the total flying
time, and the alternate fields that may be used
if landing at the scheduled airport is hazardous.
The dispatcher and the captain must agree on



Airline dispatcher calculates quantity of fuel needed to complete
a flight

all details of the flight before the plane leaves
the airport. In some instances, the dispatcher is
also responsible for keeping records and checking
such matters as the availability of aircraft and
equipment; the weight and balance o f loaded
cargo; the amount o f time flown by each plane;
and the number o f hours flown by each crew
member based at his station.
After the flight has begun, the dispatcher plots
the plane’s progress as reported at regular inter­
vals by the captain by radio, and keeps the
captain informed of changing weather and other
conditions that affect his flight.
The assistant dispatcher helps the dispatcher
plot the progress of flights, secure weather infor­
mation, and handle communications with aircraft.
In late 1962, only about 700 dispatchers and
200 assistants were employed in scheduled domes­
tic and international operations, primarily at
large airports in the United States. An even
smaller number worked for large certificated
supplemental airlines and for private firms which
offer dispatching services to small airlines.
T ra in in g , O ther Q u a lifica tio n s, a n d A d v a n ce m e n t

Dispatchers are required to have an F A A
dispatcher certificate. An applicant for such a
certificate may qualify, in part, if he has spent
at least a year engaged in dispatching work under
the supervision of a certificated dispatcher. He
may also qualify by completing an F A A -

approved dispatcher’s course at a school or an
airline training center. I f an applicant has none
of this schooling or experience, he may also qual­
ify if he has spent 2 o f the previous 3 years in
air traffic control work, or in such airline jobs as
dispatch clerk, assistant dispatcher, or radio
operator, or in similar work in military service.
An applicant for an F A A dispatcher certifi­
cate must pass a written examination on subjects
such as Civil Air Regulations, weather analysis,
air-navigation facilities, radio procedures, and
airport and airway traffic procedures. In an oral
test, he also has to demonstrate his ability to
interpret weather information, his knowledge of
landing and cruising speeds and other aircraft
operational characteristics, and his familiarity
with airline routes and navigational facilities.
A licensed dispatcher is checked periodically by
his employer to make sure that he is maintaining
the skills required by Federal regulations. Some
experienced dispatchers are given additional
instruction by their airlines at special training
centers so that they may become familiar with
new flight procedures and with characteristics of
new aircraft. Each year he is also required to
“ fly the line” as an observer over the portion
o f the system which he services, in order to
maintain his first-hand familiarity with airline
routes and flight operations.
For assistant dispatcher jobs, which may not
require certification, airlines prefer men who
have at least 2 years o f college or an equivalent
amount of time working in some phase of air
transportation, such as communications. Prefer­
ence is given to college graduates who have had
courses in mathematics, physics, and related
subjects. Some experience in flying, meteorology,
or business administration is also helpful.
Most airlines fill assistant dispatcher positions
by promotion or transfer from within the com­
pany. Men are preferred who have had long
experience in ground flight operations work. As
a result, most openings are filled by men who
have been dispatch clerks, meteorologists, or radio
operators; a few jobs are filled by men who have
been pilots.
E m plo ym ent O u tlo o k

The increase in airline traffic anticipated dur­
ing the remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer



run is expected to result in a slight increase in
the number o f workers employed in this very
small occupation. Most of the new workers will
be hired as assistant dispatchers or dispatch
clerks. Job openings for dispatchers will be
filled mainly by promoting or transferring exper­
ienced persons already employed by the airlines.
The need for some additional dispatchers will
result from the increase in air traffic, the addi­
tion and extension of routes, and the extra diffi­
culties in dispatching jet aircraft. However, these
factors will be largely offset by improved radio
and telephone communication facilities, which
allow dispatchers at major terminals to dispatch
aircraft at other airports and over large geo­
graphic areas. Foreign-flag airlines, which fly
between overseas points and cities in the United
States, will also provide a few job opportunities
for dispatchers.

Earnings and Working Conditions
Beginning dispatchers earned between $600
and $700 a month in late 1962. Dispatchers with
10 years’ service earned between $900 and $1,200
a month. Assistant dispatchers earned $400 to
$500 a month to start and $455 to $625 a month
after 3 years. Assistant dispatchers with F A A
certificates may earn $25 a month extra. Most
dispatchers are members o f the A ir Line Dis­
patchers Association.

Where To Go for More Information
Air Line Dispatchers Association,
4620 Lee Highway, Arlington, Va., 22207.

See introductory section for additional sources
of information and for general information on
supplementary benefits and working conditions.

Air Traffic Controllers
Nature of Work
Air traffic controllers are the guardians o f the
airways. These employees of the Federal Avia­
tion Agency (F A A ) give instructions, advice,
and information by radio to pilots in order to
avoid collisions and minimize delays as planes
fly between ariports or in the vicinity of airports.
When directing aircraft, traffic controllers must
consider many factors including weather, geo­
graphy, the amount of traffic, and the size, speed,
and other operating characteristics of aircraft.
The men who control traffic in the areas around
airports are known as airport traffic controllers
(D.O.T. 0-61.60) ; those who guide planes between
airports are called air-route traffic controllers.
Airport traffic controllers are stationed at
airport control towers to give all pilots within
the vicinity of the airport weather information,
and takeoff and landing instructions, such as
which approach and airfield runway to use and
when to change altitude. They must simul­
taneously control several aircraft which appear
as tiny bars on a radar scope. They talk on the
radio first to one and then another of the pilots
o f these planes, remembering their numbers and
their positions in the air, and give each of them
different instructions. These workers also keep

Courtesy of Federal Aviation Agency

Airport traffic controllers use radar and radio to guide airplanes

records of all messages received from aircraft,
and operate runway lights and other airfield
electronic equipment. They may also send and
receive information to and from air-route traffic
control centers about flights made over the
Air-route traffic controllers are stationed at
air traffic control centers to coordinate the move­



ments o f planes which are being flown “ on instru­
ments.” They use the written flight plans which
are filed by pilots and dispatchers before planes
leave the airport. To make sure that planes
remain on course, they check the progress of
flights, using radar and other electronic equip­
ment and information received from the aircraft,
other control centers and towers, and from F A A
or airline communication stations.

Where Employed
About 12,500 air traffic controllers were
employed by the F A A in early 1963. O f these,
nearly half were airport traffic controllers,
employed at airport control towers located at
key airfields. A few of these jobs are located
at a small number of towers and centers outside
the United States. About 6,400 air-route traffic
controllers worked in the 35 control centers
scattered throughout the United States.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Applicants for positions as air-route or airport
traffic controller must be at least 21 years of age
and able to speak clearly and precisely. They
enter the field through the competitive Federal
Civil Service system after passing a rigid physical
examination, which they must pass every year.
Applicants must have had from 2% to 3 years’
experience in one or a combination of several
fields, such as military air traffic control experi­
ence, piloting, flight communication, radar opera­
tions, or dispatching.
Successful applicants for airport traffic con­
troller jobs are given 8 weeks of formal training
at the F A A aeronautical center in Oklahoma
City, to learn the fundamentals of the airway
system, Civil Air Eegulations, and radar and air­
craft performance characteristics. Newly hired
air-route traffic controllers are given a slightly
longer period o f basic instruction at the center
where they will be working. After completing
this training, both groups of controllers qualify
for a basic air traffic control certificate. At an
F A A control tower or center, they receive addi­
tional classroom instruction and on-the-job train­
ing to become familiar with specific traffic prob­
lems. After about 6 months, they generally
qualify as assistant controllers and receive addi­
692-408 0 — 63--- 38

tional training. This training is designed to
simulate emergency situations to determine the
assistant controller’s emotional stability under
pressure, stress, and strain. Only after he has
demonstrated his ability to apply procedures, and
to use available equipment under pressure and
stress may he work as a controller. This usually
takes about a year from the time he becomes an
assistant controller.
Controllers can advance to the job of chief
controller. After this promotion, they may
advance to more responsible management jobs
in air traffic control and to a few top administra­
tive jobs in the F A A .

Employment Outlook
Total employment of air traffic controllers is
expected to remain about the same over the next
10 to 15 years. The number of airport traffic
controllers will grow moderately during this
period while the number of air-route traffic con­
trollers will decline slightly.
Additional airport traffic controllers will be
needed because of the anticipated growth in the
number of airport towers that will be built to
reduce the burden on existing facilities and to
handle increasing airline traffic. More airport
controllers will also be needed to provide services
to the growing number of pilots outside of the
airlines, such as those employed by companies
to fly their executives.
A small number of additional air-route traffic
controllers will be needed during the next few
years to handle increases in air traffic. However,
with the expected introduction of an automatic
air traffic control system and a further decline
in the number of control centers by the mid1960’s, employment of air-route traffic controllers
is expected to decline in the longer run.
Several hundred openings will occur each year
for both kinds of controller jobs because of the
need to replace those workers who leave for other
work, retire, or die.
Competition for jobs as air traffic controllers
will continue to be great. For example, F A A
estimates that there were approximately 5,000
qualified applicants for air-traffic controller jobs
in 1962. By contrast, in that same year, only
about 1,500 men began their careers as air traffic



Earnings and Working Conditions
The monthly salary for air traffic controllers
during their first 6 to 12 months of training was
about $420 in late 1962. After this training per­
iod, they receive about $500 monthly during their
first year as an assistant air traffic controller.
Air-route traffic controllers earn about $610 to
$790 a month depending on the type of work they
do. Airport traffic controllers earn between $555
and $960 a month depending on the amount of
traffic handled at their station and how long they
have been on the job. In addition, all traffic con­
trollers may receive automatic wage increases
every 12 months. In areas that handle extremely
large volumes of air traffic, a chief controller may
earn from $1,200 to $1,300 a month. These
employees receive the same annual, sick leave, and
other benefits as other Federal workers.

F A A controllers work a basic 40-hour week;
however, they may work overtime, for which they
receive equivalent time off or additional pay.
Because control towers and centers must be oper­
ated 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, controllers are
periodically assigned to night shifts on a rotating
basis. However, an additional 10 percent is paid
for work between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m.
Because of the congestion in air traffic, a con­
troller works under great stress. He is responsi­
ble for directing as many as 10 to 20 or more
aircraft at the same time. He must simultane­
ously check flights already under his control,
know the flight schedules of planes approaching
his area, and coordinate these patterns with other
controllers as each flight passes from his control
area to another.
See introductory section for sources of addi­
tional information and for general information
on supplementary benefits and working conditions.

Ground Radio Operators and Teletypists
(D .O.T. 0-61.33 and 1-37.33)

Nature of Work

Where Employed

Ground radio operators and teletypists trans­
mit highly important messages concerning
weather conditions and other flight information
between ground station personnel and flight per­
sonnel. Radio operators use a radio-telephone to
send and receive spoken messages; some oper­
ators may use a radio-telegraph to transmit writ­
ten messages. Radio operators occasionally may
make minor repairs on their equipment. Tele­
typists transmit only written messages between
ground personnel. They operate a teletype
machine which has a keyboard similar to that of
a typewriter.
Flight service station specialists employed by
the Federal Aviation Agency (F A A ) do work
similar to that of airline ground radio operators
and teletypists. They use radio-telephones, radio­
telegraph, and teletype machines in their work.
In addition to providing pilots with weather and
navigational information before and during
flights, these workers relay messages from air
traffic control facilities to other ground station
personnel, and to pilots.

More than 8,000 ground radio operators and
teletypists were employed in air transportation in
late 1962. Flight service station specialists
employed by the F A A made up about half o f
employed about 3,200 radio operators and tele­
typists. An additional 400 were employed by
a cooperative organization which offers the air­
lines, private pilots, and corporation aircraft its
services over a centralized communications sys­
tem. A few hundred were employed by the
Army and Navy in civilian communications
F A A flight service station specialists work at
stations scattered along the major airline routes;
some stations are located in remote places. Ground
radio operators and teletypists employed by the
airlines work mostly at airports in or near large

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Applicants for airline radio operator jobs
usually must have at least a third-class Federal



Communications Commission radio-telephone or
radio-telegraph operator’s permit. However, a
second-class operator’s permit is preferred. They
must also be high school graduates and have a good
speaking voice, the ability to type at least 40 words
a minute, and a basic knowledge of the language
used in weather reports. Teletypists must be able
to type at least 40 words a minute and have had
training or experience in operating teletype equip­
ment. Applicants for jobs as radio operators and
teletypists must also have a knowledge of
standard codes and symbols used in communica­
To qualify for entry positions as F A A flight
service station specialists, applicants must be
at least 18 years old and have from 2% to 3
years’ experience in some phase of air communi­
cations, traffic control, or flying. Permanent
appointments are made on the basis of Federal
civil service examinations.
The airlines usually employ women as tele­
typists, and an increasing number are being
hired as radio operators. Both airline radio
operators and teletypists and F A A flight service
station specialists serve probationary periods,
during which time they receive on-the-job train­
ing. Skill gained in communications is helpful
experience for transferring into such higher pay­
ing jobs as airline dispatcher or meteorologist.

Employment Outlook
There will be several hundred opportunities
each year during the remainder of the 1960’s and
in the longer run for new workers to get entry
jobs as radio operators or teletypists, as workers
transfer to other fields of work, retire, or die.
Overall employment of these workers may decline

somewhat because of the use of more automatic
communications equipment which allows com­
munications for longer distances.
The number of flight service station specialists
employed by the F A A is expected to remain
about the same in the years ahead. Need for
additional workers to perform more services for
pilots will be offset by improvements in equipment
and an increase in two-way radios that permit
communications between pilots and air traffic
controllers. The number of radio operators and
teletypists employed by airlines probably will
decrease due to communications systems becoming
more automatic and centralized.

Earnings and Working Conditions
The beginning salary for airline radio opera­
tors who held the minimum third-class permit
generally was between $350 and $400 a month in
late 1962. Workers who held a second-class
license generally received $10 or $25 more a
month. The beginning salary for teletypists
ranged from $325 to $345 a month. Beginning
F A A flight service station specialists receive
between $380 and $460 a month, depending on
the amount of traffic for which they are respon­
sible; experienced communicators earned up to
$730 a month.
Radio operators and teletypists in a number of
airlines are unionized. The major union in these
occupational fields is the Communications W ork­
ers of America.
See introductory section for sources of addi­
tional information and for general information
on supplementary benefits and working con­

Traffic Agents and Clerics
(D .O.T. 1-44.12, .27, and .32)

Nature of Work
Selling flight tickets, reserving seats and cargo
space, and taking charge of the ground handling
of planes are some of the duties of traffic agents
and clerks. This group of workers includes ticket
or reservation agents and clerks, operations or
station agents, and traffic representatives.

Reservation agents and clerks give customers
flight schedule and fare information over the
telephone. They record reservations as they are
made and report the reservations by teletype
machine to clerks in other cities so that the same
space will not be sold twice. They also receive
teletype messages informing them o f the sale of



also employed by the supplemental airlines, and
by foreign-flag airlines that operate between the
United States and overseas points.
Traffic staffs are employed principally in down­
town offices and at airports in or near large cities
where most airline passenger and cargo business
originates. Some are employed in smaller com­
munities where airlines have scheduled stops.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement

Ticket agent weighs passenger's baggage

space. Ticket agents sell tickets and fill out ticket
forms including such information as the flight
number and the passenger’s name and destination.
They also check and weigh baggage, answer
inquiries about flight schedules and fares, and
keep records of tickets sold. Traffic representa­
tives contact potential customers in order to pro­
mote greater use of the airlines’ services.
Operations or station agents are responsible
for the ground handling of airplanes at their
stations. They supervise the loading and unload­
ing of the aircraft and sometimes do this work
themselves. They see that the weight carried by
the planes is distributed properly, compute gas
loads and the weight carried by the plane, prepare
a list o f the cargo, and keep records of the number
o f passengers carried. They may also make
arrival and departure annoucements and prepare
the weather forms that pilots use when they plan
their routes.

Where Employed
About 28,000 men and women were employed
as traffic agents and clerks by the scheduled air­
lines in late 1962. A few thousand others were

Traffic agents and clerks must deal directly with
the public, either in person or by telephone. For
this reason, airlines have strict hiring standards
with respect to appearance, personality, and edu­
cation. A good speaking voice is essential because
these employees frequently use the telephone or
public address systems. High school graduation
generally is required, and college training is con­
sidered desirable. Experience with freight, pas­
senger, or express traffic in other branches of
transportation is also desirable.
College courses in transportation, such as
“ traffic management” and “ air transportation,” as
well as experience in other areas o f air transpor­
tation, are helpful for a higher grade job, such
as traffic representative. Both men and women
are employed as reservation and ticket agents;
however, most operations agents are men.
Traffic agents may advance to positions as
traffic representative and supervisor. A few may
eventually move up to jobs as city and district
traffic and station manager. Some are able to
transfer to better paying jobs with travel
agencies or to the traffic departments o f big

Employment Outlook
There will be many thousands of opportuni­
ties for new workers to get jobs as traffic agents
and clerks throughout the remainder of the
1960’s and in the longer run, mainly because of
high turnover as young women leave their jobs
to marry or rear children. Total employment in
these jobs is expected to grow slightly.
Only a slight increase in traffic personnel will
be required to handle the large increase in pas­
senger and cargo traffic expected to occur in the
next 10 to 15 years because of the increased use
o f electronic equipment to process information.



Most of the major airlines are installing new
machines to record and process reservations, keep
records, and perform a variety of other routine
tasks. The job of reservation clerk, in particu­
lar, will be affected by this mechanization. The
employment of ticket agents, however, whose
main job involves personal contacts, will not be
affected very much, although their paper work
will be reduced considerably. The small group
of traffic representatives probably will increase
substantially as the airlines compete for new

Earnings and Working Conditions
Wage data collected from union-management
contracts covering reservations and ticket agents
employed by several airlines indicate that their

beginning salaries ranged from $295 to $355 a
month in early 1963. Those workers with 5 to 8
years or more of experience earned between $390
and $460 a month. Station and operations agents
started at about $325 a month and progressed
to about $420 a month after several years.
Many reservation and transportation agents
belong to labor unions. Most of the organized
agents belong to the Transport Workers Union
of America or the Brotherhood of Kailway and
Steamship Clerks, Freight Handlers, Express
and Station Employes. The Air Line Agents
Association also represents some of these workers.
See introductory section for sources of addi­
tional information and for general information
on supplementary benefits and working con­

Electricity, as a source of energy, is vital to
our Nation’s economic development and standard
of living. It powers the industrial machines that
produce our goods, makes possible our vast net­
work o f electronic communications, and provides
energy to heat, cool, and light our homes, and to
run the wide variety of household appliances we
depend upon. Nearly all of America’s electricity
is produced by electric utility systems which
served approximately 60 million customers in
early 1963.
Many types of workers are needed to provide
and maintain electric utility services. These
include power plant operators, linemen, meter
readers, electricians, engineers, research scientists,
technicians, and workers in office occupations. In
many communities, the local utility system offers
interesting and steady jobs for men and women.

Nature and Location of the Industry
The electric light and power industry is made
up of approximately 3,300 private and govern­
ment (Federal, State, and municipal) utility sys­
tems. These systems include powerplants which
make (generate) electric energy, substations
which increase or decrease this energy (measured
in volts), and a vast network of transmission and
distribution lines.
The delivery of electricity to the user at the
instant he needs it is the distinctive feature of
the operation of electric power systems. Elec­
tricity cannot be efficiently stored but must be
used at the same moment it is produced. Because
a customer can begin or increase his use of elec­
tric power at any time, by merely flicking a
switch, a utility system must have sufficient
capacity to meet peak consumer needs at any
time during the day or night.
Some utilities generate, transmit, and distribute
only electrical energy; others produce both elec­
tricity and gas. This chapter is concerned with

employment opportunities only in those jobs
relating to the producing and sending o f electric
power in both types of companies.
In early 1963, private and government utility
systems employed approximately 440,000 workers
to provide electric light and power. Privately
owned systems which generate and distribute
electricity only, employed about 252,000 of these
workers. Private systems which produce both
gas and electricity employed about 122,000
workers in connection with electric services.
Federal, State, and municipal government sys­
tems employed the remainder— an estimated
65,000 workers. A few large manufacturing
industries which produce electric power for their
own use also employed some electric light and
power workers.
Three principal groups of consumers—indus­
trial, residential, and commercial— purchased
more than 90 percent of all electricity sold in
1962. Industrial customers such as chemical, steel,
and automobile plants purchased almost half of
all the electric power sold. Residential customers
purchased more than 25 percent, and commercial
customers such as stores, hotels, and office build­
ings purchased over 15 percent.
Electric utility service now reaches almost every
locality, and electric utility jobs are found in
small towns, rural areas, and cities. Most of these
jobs, however, are in the more heavily populated
urban areas, especially where there are many in­
dustrial users or where a large utility has its
headquarters. The continuing extension of elec­
tric service into rural areas has brought more
utility jobs into the smaller towns. Hydroelectric
power projects have created some electric utility
jobs in relatively isolated areas.

Electric Light and Power Processes and Activities
Producing and distributing large quantities of
electric energy involves many processes and



activities. Chart 34 shows how electric energy is
generated and how it travels from the generating
station to the users.
The first step in providing electric energy
takes place in a generating station or plant, where
generators convert mechanical energy into
electricity. The energy for most generators is
furnished by steam- or water-powered turbines.
Some generators are operated by internal com­
bustion engines. Electricity is primarily pro­
duced in steam-powered generating plants which
use coal, gas, or oil for fuel. A few new genera­
ting stations use nuclear energy as fuel. A con­
siderable amount of electricity is also produced
in hydroelectric generating stations where water
power is used to operate the turbines.

After electricity is generated, but before it
flows through the powerlines leading away from
the station, it passes through a “ switchyard”
where the voltage is increased in order that the
electricity may travel long distances without
excessive loss of powder. After leaving the gener­
ating plant, electricity passes onto transmission
lines. These lines carry electricity from the gen­
erating plant to substations where the energy is
decreased and passed on to the distribution net­
works serving individual customers. Transmission
lines tie together the generating stations of a single
system and also the power facilities of several
systems. In this way, power can be interchanged
to meet varying demands.
Workers are needed in many different occu­
pations to produce electric power and make it
available at the instant the user requires it. About

C H A R T 34


10 percent of the employees in this industry
work in occupations directly related to the gen­
eration of electricity. About 20 percent are in
jobs related to the transmission and distribution
of power to the customers. Another 20 percent
are in maintenance and repair work and in jobs
such as guard, watchman, and janitor. Approxi­
mately 30 percent are employed in administra­
tive and clerical jobs, 10 percent in customer serv­
icing jobs, and 10 percent in scientific, engineering,
and other technical occupations.
In addition to the powerplant, transmission,
and customer service occupations (discussed in
detail later in this chapter), the electric light
and power industry employs large numbers of
workers in maintenance, engineering, scientific,
administrative, and clerical occupations. The lat­
ter occupations are discussed briefly below.
Detailed discussions of these and other occupa­
tions which are in the electric light and power
industry and in many other industries are given
in the Handbook sections covering the individual
occupations. (See index for page numbers.)
Maintenance and Other Activities. A consider­
able number of workers are engaged in main­
taining and repairing the equipment used by
the electric utilities. The duties of these skilled
craftsmen are similar to those of maintenance
workers in other industries. Among the more
important skilled workers are electricians, instru­
ment repairmen, maintenance mechanics, machin­
ists, plumbers, and boilermakers. Some of the
other workers employed are guards, watchmen,
and janitors.
Engineering and Scientific Activities. Many
interesting job opportunities are available for
engineers and technical workers in electric
utilities. Engineers plan generating plant addi­
tions and installations of new transmission and
distribution equipment, and supervise their con­
struction and installation. They develop improved
operating methods and test the efficiency of the
many types of electrical equipment. They may
also plan entire utility systems. In such work,
engineers deal with problems such as the selection
o f plant sites, type of fuel, and type of plant.
Engineers also help industrial and commercial
customers make the best use of electric power for


equipment and lighting. They stimulate greater
use of electricity by demonstrating the advan­
tages of electrical equipment and suggesting
places where electricity can be more effectively
Administrative and Clerical Activities. Because
of the enormous amount of recordkeeping neces­
sary to run the business operations, electric
utilities employ a greater proportion of admini­
strative and clerical personnel than many other
industries. Nearly a third of the industry’s work
force is employed in clerical and administrative
jobs. Many of these workers are women. Large
numbers of stenographers, typists, bookkeepers,
office machine operators, file clerks, accounting
and auditing clerks, and cashiers are employed.
These workers keep records of the services rend­
ered by the company, make up bills for customers,
and prepare a variety of statements and statistical
reports. An increasing amount of this work in
the larger offices is now being performed by elec­
tronic data-processing equipment. This generally
results in more clerical work being done with the
same or fewer employees. The use of this new
equipment is also creating some new jobs such
as programer and console operator. Administra­
tive employees include specialized workers such
as accountants, personnel officers, purchasing
agents, lawyers, and salesmen.

Employment Outlook
Several thousand job opportunities for new
workers will occur each year during the remainder
of the 1960’s and in the early 1970’s, because of
the need to replace workers who retire, die, or
leave the industry for other work. Total employ­
ment in the electric light and power industry is
expected to remain relatively stable, although the
production of electricity will continue to increase
Employment of workers in the industry gen­
erally has grown at a much slower rate than the
production of power because of the use of large
and highly mechanized equipment. For example,
since operators in generating stations are needed
chiefly to check gages and control instruments,
improvements in generating equipment have made
possible great increases in the industry’s capacity


and production with only small increases in the
number o f operators. Continuing development
of larger and more highly mechanized equipment
with many automatic controls will result in a
decline in the number of these operators. The
employment o f substation operators will continue
to decline because o f the installation of completely
automatic equipment in all but the largest substa­
tions. Fewer men will be needed in crews working
on powerlines because o f the increasing use of
mechanical equipment for setting poles and
stringing and maintaining lines. This equipment
enables smaller crews to do as much work as
larger crews, by eliminating much of the timeconsuming physical labor. Employment decreases
in generating, transmission, and distribution
operations may be offset by the expected growth
in the number of repair and maintenance crafts­
men needed to keep the industry’s increasing
amount o f complex machinery in good working
Because o f more efficient billing and record­
keeping systems and the increasing use of elec­
tronic data-processing equipment in the larger
offices, only a small increase in office employment
is expected. However, the relatively high turn­
over in office jobs will provide many additional
openings for new workers each year. Some
increase in employment is also expected in admin­
istrative jobs, and scientific, engineering, and
other technical jobs.
The production o f electric power will continue
to show significant gains. Industrial customers
are expected to use more electricity because o f the
increasing application of electric power to indus­
trial processes. Use o f electricity by residential
customers will increase because the rapid growth
in population and household units will stimulate
the use o f more electric power for residential heat­
ing and air conditioning as well as wider use of
appliances. The construction of new stores and
offices and modernization o f existing structures
will increase the use of electricity by commercial

Earnings and Working Conditions
Earnings in the electric utility industry are
generally higher than in other public utility

industries and in many manufacturing industries.
In January 1968, nonsupervisory employees of
electric light and power utilities averaged $2.93
an hour or $120.13 a week.
Most nonsupervisory electric utility workers in
the production, transmission, and distribution
departments are union members. The bargaining
representative for most of these workers is either
the International Brotherhood of Electrical
Workers or the Utility Workers Union of Amer­
ica, both affiliated with the American Federation
of Labor—Congress of Industrial Organizations
(A F L -C IO ). Some utility workers are repre­
sented by independent, unaffiliated unions.
Because supplying electricity is a 24-hour,
7-day-a-week activity, some employees must work
schedules which include evenings, nights, and
weekends. Most union contracts with electric
utilities provide a higher rate of pay for evening
and night work than the basic day rate. In early
1963, workers on the second shift received from
7 to 15 cents an hour more than the basic day
rate, and those on the third shift, from 9 to 22
cents an hour more.
Overtime work is sometimes required, especi­
ally during emergencies such as floods, hurri­
canes, or storms. During an “ emergency callout,”
which is a short-notice request to report to work
during nonscheduled hours, the worker is gen­
erally guaranteed a minimum of 3 or 4 hours’
pay at 1y2 times his basic hourly rate, and travel
time to and from the job is counted as worktime.
In addition to these provisions which affect
the workers’ pay, other benefits are provided by
electric utilities, Annual vacations are granted to
workers according to length o f service. Usually,
contracts provide for a 1-week vacation for 6
months to 1 year of service, 2 weeks for 1 to 10
years, 3 weeks for 10 to 20 years, and a number
of contracts provide for 4 weeks for 20 years
or more. The number of paid holidays ranges
from 5 to 12 days a year, depending on locality.
Nearly all companies have benefit plans for their
employees. A typical program provides life, hos­
pitalization, and surgical insurance and paid sick
leave. Ketirement pension plans supplement Fed­
eral social security payments, and are generally
paid for by the employer.



The number of injuries per million man-hours
worked is much lower in this industry than in
most manufacturing industries. Workers in some
occupations in this industry are more subject to
accidents than others. Accidents occur most fre­
quently among the line and cable splicing crews.
Because of the dangers of electrocution and other
hazards, electric utilities and unions have made
intensive efforts to enforce safe working practices.
Utility companies have set up safety rules for
employees to follow. Strict adherence to these
safety standards is required. As a result, the
industry’s accident rate has been declining in
recent years.

Where To Go for More Information
More information about jobs in the electric
light and power industry may be obtained from
local electric utility companies or from the local
offices of unions which have electric utility work­
ers among their membership. I f no local offices
of the unions are listed in the telephone directory,
write to the national headquarters of the follow­
ing unions and ask them to refer your letter to
their nearest branch:
International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers,
1200 15th St. N W , Washington, D.C., 20005.
Utility Workers Union of America,
1725 K St. N W ., Washington, D.C., 20006.

Powerplant Occupations
Nature of Work
The key workers in a powerplant are the
operators who watch, check, control, and keep
records of the operation of various kinds of
equipment. They must see that the equipment
is functioning efficiently and detect instantly any
trouble which may arise. There are four basic
classes of operators—boiler, turbine, auxiliary
equipment, and switchboard operators. In many
new plants, the duties of these operators are
combined, and operators and their assistants are
known as steam operators, powerplant operators,
or centralized control room operators.. O f increas­
ing importance in this highly mechanized indus­
try are the maintenance men and repairmen, in­
cluding electrical, instrument, and mechanical
repairmen. Other powerplant workers include
coal equipment operators and cleaners, and, in
hydroelectric plants, gate tenders who open and
close the headgates which control the flow of water
to the turbines. Supervision of powerplant
operations is handled by a chief engineer and by
his assistants, the watch engineers.
Boiler operators (D.O.T. 5-72.930) regulate
the fuel, air, and water supply in the boilers
and maintain proper steam pressure needed to
turn the turbines, on the basis of information
shown by control valves, meters, and other instru­
ments mounted on panel boards. One man may
operate one or more boilers. Boiler operators, of
course, are employed only where steam, produced
in boilers, is used to generate electricity. None are

needed in hydroelectric plants, since these plants
use waterpower to generate electricity.
Turbine operators (D.O.T. 5-51.120) control
the operation of steam- or water-powered turbines
which drive the generators. (In small plants,
they may also operate auxiliary equipment or a
switchboard.) Modern steam turbines and gen­
erators operate at extremely high speeds, pres­
sures, and temperatures; therefore, close attention
must be given the pressure gages, thermometers,
and other instruments which show the operations
of the turbogenerator unit. Turbine operators
record the information shown by these instru­
ments, and check the oil pressure at bearings, the
speed of the turbines, and the circulation and
amount of cooling water in the condensers which
change the steam back into water. They are also
responsible for starting and shutting down the
turbines and generators, as directed by the switch­
board operator in the control room. Other work­
ers, such as helpers and junior operators, assist
the turbine operators.
Auxiliary equipment operators (D.O.T. 5-51.
115) operate pumps, fans, and blowers, con­
densers, evaporators, water conditioners, com­
pressors, and coal pulverizers. They check and
record the reading of instruments which show
how the equipment is functioning. Since auxiliary
equipment may go out of order occasionally, the
operators must be able to detect trouble quickly,
make accurate judgments, and sometimes make
repairs. This equipment, which is used only in


steam operating plants, is essential to the powerplant operations since it is directly connected with
the operation of the boilers and the turbines. As
powerplants become larger, auxiliary equipment
increases in complexity and size and more of it is
required to operate the plants.
Some o f the smaller plants do not employ
auxiliary equipment operators. Their duties are
performed by turbine operators who do both
types of work. In large plants, however, auxiliary
equipment operators often outnumber turbine
Switchboard operators (D.O.T. 5-51.130) con­
trol the flow of electric power in the generating
station from generators to outgoing powerlines.
They usually work in a control room which is
equipped with switchboards and instrument pan­
els. Switches control the movement of electricity
through the generating station circuits and onto
the transmission lines.
Instruments mounted on panelboards show the
power demands on the station at any instant, the
powerload on each line leaving the station, the
amount of current being produced by each gen­
erator, and the voltage. The operators use
switches to distribute the power demands among
the generators in the station, to combine the
current from two or more generators, and to
regulate the flow o f the electricity onto various
powerlines to meet the demands of the users
served by each line. When power requirements
on the station change, they order generators
started or stopped and, at the proper time, con­
nect them to the power circuits in the station
or disconnect them. In doing this work, they fol­
low telephone orders from the load dispatcher
who directs the flow of current throughout the
The switchboard operators and their assist­
ants also check their instruments frequently to
see that electricity is moving through and out of
the powerplant properly and that correct voltage
is being maintained. Among their other duties,
switchboard operators keep records of all switch­
ing operations and of load conditions on gener­
ators, lines, and transformers. They obtain this
information by making regular meter readings.
Plants with high generating capacity gener­
ally have more varied and complex equipment
than smaller plants. Disturbances in the sys­

tem may have far-reaching effects, and cause
interruptions in service over a large area.
Therefore, switchboard operators in large plants
check their lines and test their equipment more
frequently than operators in small plants, and
thus must have a greater degree of skill.
In some new powerplants, the duties of the
switchboard operator are combined with those
of boiler operator, turbine operator, and auxiliary
equipment operator. In such cases, he is called a
central control room operator or powerplant
operator. Generally, these powerplants have
controls for all departments centralized in the
control room. From this central control room,
through closed television circuits, the control
room operator, with several assistants, watches
all powerplant controls and reports to the super­
visor when the instruments show that such equip­
ment is not operating properly.
Watch engineers (D.O.T. 5-95.320) are the
principal supervisory workers in a powerplant.
They supervise the employees responsible for the
operation and maintenance of boilers, turbines,
generators, auxiliary equipment, switchboards,
transformers, and other machinery and equip­
ment. Watch engineers are supervised by a chief
engineer or a plant superintendent who is in
charge of the entire plant.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
New powerplant workers generally begin at the
bottom of the ladder—usually on cleanup jobs.
Such work gives beginners an opportunity to
become familiar with the equipment and the
operations of a powerplant. They advance to
the more responsible job of helper, as job open­
ings occur. Formal apprenticeships in these jobs
are rare. Applicants are generally required to
have a high school education or its equivalent.
Advancement on the job depends primarily on
ability to master the skills required.
It takes from 1 to 3 years to become a fully
qualified auxiliary equipment operator and from
4 to 8 years to become a boiler operator, turbine
operator, or switchboard operator. A person
learning to be an auxiliary equipment operator
progresses from helper to junior operator to
operator. A boiler operator generally spends
from 2 to 6 months as a laborer before being
promoted to the job of helper. Depending on

openings and the worker’s aptitude, the helper
may advance to junior boiler operator and even­
tually to boiler operator, or transfer to the main­
tenance department and work his way up to
boiler repairman. In most large cities, boiler
operators, who operate high-pressure boilers, are
required to be licensed.
Turbine operators are selected from among
auxiliary equipment operators, in many plants.
The line of advancement in other plants is from
laborer to turbine helper. The helper then may
advance either to junior turbine operator and
eventually to turbine operator, or he may transfer
to turbine repairman, depending on job openings
and his aptitude. Turbine operators in most large
cities are required to be licensed.
"Where a system has a number of generating
plants of different size, operators first get experi­
ence in the smaller stations and then are pro­
moted to jobs in the larger stations as vacancies
occur. New workers in the switchboard opera­
tions section begin as helpers, advance to junior
operators, and then to switchboard operators.
They also may advance from jobs in small sta­
tions to those in larger stations where operating
conditions are much more complex. Some utility
companies promote substation operators to switch­
board operating jobs. The duties of both classes
o f operators have much in common. In the larger
plants, switchboard operators can advance to the
job of chief switchboard operator.
Watch engineers are selected from among
experienced powerplant operators. At least 5
to 10 years of experience as a first-class operator
are usually required to qualify for a watch
engineer’s job.

Employment Outlook
Several hundred job openings for new workers
will occur each year during the remainder of the
1960’s and in the early 1970’s because o f the
need to replace operators who retire, die, or leave
the industry for other work. However, the total
number of jobs for powerplant operators is not
expected to increase, and may even decrease
somewhat, although the capacity and production
of electric utility systems, is expected to double
during the decade ahead.


Control room operator regulates output of generating unit

The use of larger and more efficient equipment
makes possible great increases in capacity and
production without corresponding increases in
the number of workers. For example, one opera­
tor can control a large modem turbogenerator
unit which produces 200,000 kilowatts as well as
he can control a much smaller one. Also, the
growing use of new equipment which has many
automatic operating features reduces the number
o f operators needed. For example, in some gen­
erating plants, all operating processes are directed
from a central control room. In this room, elec­
tronically operated instruments report and make
a permanent record of the operations of boilers,
turbines, and auxiliary equipment. Television
screens even make it possible to watch the boiler
fires from the control rooms. In plants with such
highly automatic equipment, a control room
operator and his assistants do the work o f boiler
operator, turbine operator, auxiliary equipment
operator, and switchboard operator.
The number and skill requirements of employ­
ees in powerplants that use atomic energy as fuel
do not differ greatly from operators in powerplants using other fuels. Generally, about the
same number and types of operators will be
required to run an atomic-powered steam-gen­
erating plant as are required to operate steam­
generating plants using more common fuels.



Earnings and Working Conditions
The earnings of powerplant workers depend
on the type of job they have, the part of the
country in which they work, and many other
factors. The following tabulation shows esti­
mated average hourly earnings for selected
powerplant occupations in privately operated
utilities with 100 or more employees in mid-1962:
A v er a g e h o u rly
e a rn in g s

Auxiliary equipment operator________________
Boiler operator________________________________
Control room operator_______________________
Switchboard operator:
Switchboard operator, Class A ___________
Switchboard operator, Class B ___________
Turbine operator______________________________
W atch engineer_______________________________

$2. 78
3. 10
3. 49


A powerplant is typically well lighted and
ventilated and its interior is clean and orderly.
Even steam plants that use coal are generally
clean, since coal is handled by mechanical equip­
ment separated from principal work areas. The
turbine room is airy and clean, but there is con­
siderable noise from the whirring turbines.
Switchboard operators in the control room
often sit at the panel boards, but boiler and
turbine operators are almost constantly on their
feet. The work of powerplant operators is gen­
erally not physically strenuous, particularly in
the newer powerplants. Since generating stations
operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, powerplant employees sometimes must work nights and

Transmission and Distribution Occupations
Nature of Work
A fifth of the workers employed by electric
light and power systems are in transmission and
distribution jobs. These workers are primarily
employed in getting electric power to the users.
The principal workers in transmission and dis­
tribution jobs are those who control the flow of
electricity—load dispatchers and substation oper­
ators—and the men who construct and maintain
powerlines—linemen, cable splicers, troublemen,
groundmen, and helpers. Linemen make up the
largest single occupation in the industry.
Load dispatchers (D.O.T. 5-51.520) (some­
times called system operators or power dis­
patchers) are the key operating workers of the
transmission and distribution departments. They
control the flow of electricity. The load dis­
patcher’s room is the nerve center of the entire
utility system. From this location, the dispatcher
controls the plant equipment used to generate
electricity and directs its flow throughout the
system. He telephones his instructions to the
switchboard operators at the generating plants
and the substations. His instructions tell oper­
ators how power is to be routed and when addi­
tional boilers and generators are to be started
up or shut down in line with the total power
needs of the system.

The load dispatcher must anticipate demands
for electric power so the system will be prepared
to meet them. Power demands on utility systems
may change from hour to hour. A sudden after­
noon rainstorm can cause a million lights to be
switched on in a matter of minutes, but boilers
often must be heated for 2 hours before they
are ready to produce sufficient steam for gener­
ating. Therefore, the load dispatcher must keep
in touch with weather reports from hour to hour.
He must also be able to direct the handling of
any emergency situation, such as a transformer
or transmission line failure, and to route current
around the affected area. Load dispatchers are
also in charge of the interconnections with other
systems, and they direct the transfer of current
between systems as the need arises.
The load dispatcher’s source o f information for
the entire transmission system centers in the pilot
board. This pilot board, which dominates the
load dispatcher’s room, is a complete map of the
utility’s transmission system. It enables the dis­
patcher to determine, at a glance, the conditions
that exist at any point in the system. Meters
on the board show the output of individual power
stations, the total amount of power being pro­
duced, and the amount of current flowing through
the principal transmission lines. Red and green
lights may show the positions of switches which

control generating equipment and transmission
circuits as well as high voltage connections with
substations and large industrial customers. The
board may also have several recording instru­
ments which make a graphic record of operations
for future analysis and study.
Substation operators (D.O.T. 5-51.210) are
generally in charge of a substation and are
responsible for its operation. Under orders from
the load dispatcher, they direct the flow of cur­
rent out of the station by means of a switchboard.
Ammeters, voltmeters, and other types of instru­
ments on the switchboard register the amount of
electric power flowing through each line. The
flow of electricity from the incoming to the out­
going lines is controlled by the circuit breakers.
The substation operators connect or break the flow
of current by manipulating levers on the switch­
board which control the circuit breakers. In some
substations, where alternating current is changed
to direct current to meet the needs of special
users, the operator controls converters which
perform the change simultaneously.
In addition to switching duties, the substation
operators check the operation of all equipment
to make sure that it is in good working order.
They supervise the activities of the other substa­
tion employees on the same shift, assign them
tasks, and direct their work. In smaller substa­
tions, the substation operator may be the only
Linemen (D.O.T. 5-53.420) construct and
maintain the network of powerlines which carry
electricity from generating plants to consumers.
However, construction of transmission lines—the
erection of the steel towers and the stringing
of the lines between them—is generally contracted
out to companies specializing in this work.
Groundmen (D.O.T. 9-54.10) dig poleholes and
assist the linemen and apprentices to erect the
wooden poles which carry the distribution lines.
The linemen bolt crossarms to the poles or towers,
and bolt or clamp insulators in place on the crossarms. With the assistance of the groundmen, they
raise the wires and cables and install them on
the poles or towers by attaching them to the
insulators. In addition, linemen attach a wide
variety of equipment to the poles and towers,
such as lightning arresters, transformers, and


Linemen’s work consists of installations, equip­
ment replacements, repairs, and routine mainte­
nance work. Although in many companies the
installation of new lines and equipment is impor­
tant, in other companies this work is performed
by outside contractors. When wires, cables, or
poles break, it means an emergency call for a line
crew. Linemen splice or replace broken wires and
cables and replace broken insulators or other
damaged equipment.
In some power companies, linemen specialize
in particular types of work. Those in one crew
may work only on new construction and others
may do only repair work. In some instances,
linemen specialize on high voltage lines using
special “ hot line” tools to avoid interruptions
in the flow of current.
Troublemen (D.O.T. 5-53.422) are linemen
with several years of experience who are assigned
to special crews which handle emergency calls
for service. They move from one special job to
another, as ordered by a central service office
which receives reports of line trouble. Often
troublemen receive their orders by direct radio
communication with the central service office.
These workers must have a thorough knowl­
edge of the company’s transmission and distri­
bution network. They first locate and report
the source of trouble and then attempt to restore
service by making the necessary repairs. Depend­
ing on the nature and extent of the trouble, a
troubleman may restore service in the case of
minor failure, or he may simply disconnect and
remove damaged equipment. He must be familiar
with all the circuits and switching points so that
he can safely disconnect live circuits in case of
line breakdowns.
Cable splicers (D.O.T. 5-53.950) install and
repair underground lines, performing about the
same service as the linemen do on the overhead
lines. When cables are installed, the cable
splicers pull the cable through the conduit in
which the cable is carried and then join the cables
at connecting points in the transmission and
distribution systems. At each connection in the
cable, they wrap insulation around the wiring.
They splice the conductors leading away from
each junction of the main cable, insulate the
splices, and connect the insulated splices to the
cable sheathing by means of a lead joint. Most of



the physical work in placing new cables or
replacing old cables is done by helpers.
Cable splicers spend most of their time in
repairing and maintaining the cables and chang­
ing the layout of the cable systems. They must
know the arrangement of the wiring systems,
where the circuits are connected, and where they
lead to and come from. They must make sure
that the conductors do not become mixed up
between the substation and the customer’s
premises. The splicers connect the ends of the
conductors to numbered terminals, making cer­
tain that they have the same identifying number
at the remote panel box in an underground vault
as they have in the control office. Cable splicers
must also make sure that the insulation on the
cables is in good condition.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Load dispatchers are selected from among
the experienced switchboard operators and opera­
tors o f the larger substations. Usually, 7 to 10
years of experience as a senior switchboard or
substation operator is required for promotion to
load dispatcher. To qualify for this job, an appli­
cant must demonstrate his knowledge of the
entire utility system.
Substation operators generally begin as assist­
ant or junior operators. It usually takes 3 to 7
years of on-the-job training to advance to the
job of operator in a large substation.
Skilled linemen (journeymen) usually qualify
for such jobs after about 4 years of on-the-job
training. In some companies, this training con­
sists of a formal apprenticeship program. Under
formal apprenticeship, there is a written agree­
ment, usually worked out with a labor union,
which covers the content o f the training and the
length of time the apprentice works in each stage
of the training. The apprenticeship program
combines on-the-job training with classroom
instruction. Such instruction includes courses in
blueprint reading, elementary electrical theory,
electrical codes, and methods of transmitting
electrical currents. A t the beginning of 1963,
856 linemen were receiving training under for­
mal apprenticeship programs.
The apprentice usually begins his training by
helping the groundman to set poles in place

and by passing tools and equipment up to the
lineman. After a training period of approxi­
mately 6 months, the apprentice begins to do sim­
ple linework on lines with low voltage. While on
this work, he is under the immediate supervision
of a journeyman lineman or the line foreman.
After about a year, he is assigned more difficult
work, but is still under close supervision. Dur­
ing the last 6 months of his apprenticeship, the
trainee does about the same kind of work as the
journeyman lineman, but with more supervision.
When he begins to work independently, he is first
assigned simple, routine tasks. After he acquires
several years of experience and demonstrates a
thorough knowledge of the company’s trans­
mission and distribution systems, he may advance
from lineman to troubleman.
The training of linemen who learn their skills
on the job is generally similar to the apprentice­
ship program; it usually takes about the same
length of time, but does not involve classroom
instruction. The worker begins as a groundman
and progresses through increasingly difficult
stages of linework before becoming a skilled
Candidates for linework should be strong and
in good physical condition, since climbing poles
and lifting lines and equipment is strenuous work.
They must also have steady nerves and good
balance to work at the tops of the poles and to
avoid the hazards of live wires and falls.
Most cable splicers get their training on the
job, usually taking about 4 years to become fully
qualified. Workers begin as helpers and are then
promoted to assistant or junior splicers. In these
jobs, they are gradually assigned more difficult
tasks as their knowledge of the work increases.
At the beginning of 1963, there were about 117
cable splicers receiving training under formal
apprenticeship programs.

Employment Outlook
Several thousand job opportunities are
expected to be available in transmission and dis­
tribution occupations during the remainder of
the 1960’s and in the early 1970’s. Most of these
opportunities will occur because of the need to
replace experienced workers who retire, die, or
transfer to other fields of work.



formerly. Much transmission line construction
work is contracted out to line construction com­
panies. Little increase in the number of cable
splicers is expected because most large cities are
already equipped with underground line installa­
tions. However, some expansion of underground
installation is anticipated in the suburban areas.
The need for substation operations will be sub­
stantially reduced because of the introduction of
improved and more automatic equipment, and the
growing number of completely automatic sub­
E a rn in g s a n d W o rk in g C o n d itio n s

The earnings of transmission and distribution
workers depend on the type of job they have and
the part of the country in which they work. The
following tabulation shows the average hourly
earnings for major transmission and distribution
occupations in privately operated utilities with
100 or more employees in mid-1962:
A v er a g e h o u rly
ea rn in g s

Load dispatcher________ ,______________________
Substation operator_____________

Linemen work from aerial basket to repair electric power line

A continued slow increase in the employment
of transmission and distribution workers is
expected. However, employment trends will differ
among the various occupations in this category.
In spite of the need to construct and maintain
the growing number of transmission and distribu­
tion lines which are anticipated, the number of
linemen and troublemen is expected to increase
only slightly. Fewer men will be needed in crews
working on distribution lines because the increas­
ing use of mechanical equipment enables smaller
crews to do as much work as larger crews did

$2. 28
3. 33
4. 00
3. 24
3. 34

!sT recent earnings data are available for cable
splicers; however, their earnings are about the
same as those for linemen.
Load dispatchers and substation operators
generally work indoors in pleasant surroundings.
Linemen, troublemen, and groundmen work out­
doors and, in emergencies, in all kinds of weather.
Cable splicers do most o f their work in manholes
beneath city streets—often in cramped quarters.
Safety standards developed over the years by
utility companies, with the cooperation o f labor
unions, have greatly reduced the accident hazards
o f these jobs.

Customer Service Occupations
N ature of W ork

Workers in customer service jobs include those
who install, test, and repair meters and those who
read the meters. Also in this group are company
agents in rural areas and appliance servicemen

working in company-operated shops which repair
electrical equipment owned by customers.
Metemnen (D.O.T. 5-83.456) (or meter repair­
men) are the most skilled workers in this group.
They install, test, maintain, and repair meters


and where the small number o f customers does
not justify the use of more specialized workers.
Their work includes reading meters, collecting
overdue bills, connecting and disconnecting
meters, and making minor repairs on them. They
receive complaints about service and reports of
line trouble and send them to a central office for
T ra in in g , O ther Q u a lifica tio n s, a n d A d v a n ce m e n t

Meterman checks accuracy of customer’s meter

on customers’ premises, particularly those of
large industrial and commercial establishments.
Some metermen can handle all types of meters,
including the more complicated ones used in
industrial plants and other places where large
quantities of electric power are used. Others
specialize in repairing the simpler kinds, like
those in homes. Often, some of the large systems
have meter specialists, such as meter installers
(D.O.T. 5-83.450, .451) and meter testers (D.O.T.
5-83.452). Meter installers put in and take out
meters. Meter testers specialize in testing the
small meters on homeowners’ property and the
more complicated ones used in relay testing and
control operations of the utility systems.
Meter readers (D.O.T. 1-49.94) go to customers’
premises—homes, stores, and factories—to read
the figures on the meters which register the
amount of electric current used. They record the
amount of current used in a specific period so
that each customer can be charged for the amount
he used. Meter readers also watch for, and report,
any tampering with meters.
District representatives usually serve as com­
pany agents in outlying districts, in localities
where the utility company does not have an office
692-408 0 — 63------- 39

Metermen begin their jobs as helpers in the
meter testing and meter repair departments.
Young men entering this field should have a
basic knowledge o f electricity. About 4 years
of on-the-job training is required to become a
fully qualified meterman. Some companies have
formal apprenticeship programs for this occupa­
tion in which the trainee progresses according to
a specific plan.
Utility companies usually employ inexperienced
men to w ork as meter readers. They generally
accompany the experienced meter reader on his
rounds until they have learned the job well
enough to go on the rounds alone. This job can
be learned in a few days.
The duties of district representatives are learned
on the job. An important qualification for men
in these jobs is the ability to deal tactfully with
the public in handling service complaints and
collecting overdue bills.
Em plo ym e nt O u tlo o k

A slight increase in employment is expected in
customer service occupations during the remain­
der of the 1960’s and in the early 1970’s. Because
many new customers—homes, offices, factories,
hotels, and stores— will be served by utility sys­
tems, a larger number of meters will be needed.
However, this will require only a slight increase
in the number of meter readers because of the trend
toward reading meters less frequently. Further­
more, since new meters are better constructed
and require less maintenance, there will be only a
slight growth in the number of metermen needed.
The need to replace metermen and meter read­
ers who retire, die, or transfer to other fields

of work will provide a small number of job open­
ings for new workers each year.

Earnings and Working Conditions
The earnings of customer service workers vary
according to the type of job they have and the
part of the country in which they work. The
following tabulation shows the average hourly
earnings for major customer service jobs in pri­
vately operated utilities with 100 or more
employees in mid-1962.

A v er a g e h o u r ly
ea r n in g s

District representative_______________________
Meter man A ___________________________________
Meterman B ___________________________________
Appliance serviceman_________________________
Meter reader__________________________________



The job of the meter reader is not physically
hard, but involves considerable walking and some
stair climbing. Metermen and appliance service­
men work indoors under typical repair shop con­
ditions except when repairing or installing meters
or appliances on customers’ premises.

Job opportunities in electronics manufacturing
are expected to continue to expand rapidly dur­
ing the remainder of the 1960’s and in the longer
run. More than 900,000 workers were employed
in this field in 1962, about 3
times the number
in 1950. Electronic products, such as radar, tele­
vision, radio, and computers, are used increas­
ingly in the Nation’s military and space pro­
grams, and in factories, offices, homes, schools, and
hospitals. Opportunities in electronics manufac­
turing during the next 10 to 15 years will be par­
ticularly good for scientists, engineers, and tech­
nicians, as well as for skilled craftsmen. Women
will find many opportunities in this field, mainly
in production jobs such as that of assembler, and
in clerical work.

C H A R T 35
Value of shipments, billions of Dollars, 1961

Nature and Location of Electronics Manufacturing
Before World War II, principal electronic
products were radios, broadcasting equipment,
other receiving and transmitting equipment, and
electron tubes. With the rapid development of
new electronic products during and after that war,
the broader term “ electronics manufacturing” or
“ electronics industry” came into general use.
The heart of every electronic product is an
electronic circuit or system which includes elec­
tron (vacuum or gas filled) tubes, semiconduc­
tors, or photosensitive devices. These tubes and
other electronic devices discharge, control, or
direct the flow of small, active particles of nega­
tive electricity (electrons) through the circuit.
Because of their unique functions, electronic
devices are finding many applications. For exam­
ple, they are used in computers which can per­
form hundreds of thousands of calculations per
second; in control systems which guide missiles
traveling at supersonic speed; and in equipment
which can transmit, over hundreds of miles, clear
pictures of events as they happen.
Electronic products may be grouped into four
major categories: (1) Military and space equip­
ment, (2) industrial and commercial products,






Source: Estimates based on Electronic Industries Association data.

(3) consumer products, and (4) components.
Military and space products accounted for
approximately half of the estimated $10.7 billion
in total electronics shipments in 1961, industrialcommercial equipment and consumer products
each accounted for roughly one-fifth, and com­
ponents produced as replacement parts made up
the remaining one-tenth. (See chart 35.) (Com­
ponents produced as original equipment for end
products are included in the shipments value of
the end products.)
Military and space products include electronic
guidance and telemetering systems for missiles
and spacecraft; radar and other detection devices;
automatic communications and computing sys587

terns; gyroscopes and other navigational equip­
ment; and fire controls (such as air-to-air target­
seeking and detonating equipment).
important commercial and industrial products are
computers; commercial radio and television
broadcasting equipment; commercial and private
aircraft communications and navigational appa­
ratus ; and industrial testing, measuring, and
production control equipment. Principal con­
sumer products include television sets, radios,
phonographs, high fidelity and stereophonic
equipment, tape recorders, and hearing aids.
Electronic components fall into three broad classi­
fications : Tubes, semiconductors, and “ other com­
ponents.” Tubes include receiving tubes, power
tubes, television picture tubes, and special pur­
pose tubes. Principal semiconductor devices are
transistors, diodes, and rectifiers. “ Other com­
ponents” include such items as capacitors, resis­
tors, transformers, relays, connectors, and
O f the more than 900,000 workers in elec­
tronics manufacturing occupations in 1962, about
850,000 were employed in manufacturing plants.
The remaining employees worked in the Federal
Government, universities, and nonprofit research
centers, in such activities as research, develop­
ment, and the negotiation and administration of
contracts. O f the 850,000 employed by manufac­
turers, an estimated 300,000 produced compon­
ents for use in military-space, industrial-commer­
cial, and consumer products; 300,000 produced
military and space end products; 150,000 manu­
factured industrial and commercial end products;
and 100,000 produced consumer end products.
Electronics manufacturing plants are located
in nearly every State, but about three-fourths of
electronics manufacturing workers are employed
in the following seven States: California, New
York, Illinois, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Massa­
chusetts, and Indiana. Metropolitan areas with
large numbers of electronics manufacturing
workers include Chicago, Los Angeles, New
York, Philadelphia, Newark, Boston, Baltimore,
and Indianapolis.

How Electronic Products Are Made
Many plants manufacturing electronic prod­
ucts specialize in one type of end product, such
as television sets, radios, and electronic com­


puters; or one type of component, such as tele­
vision picture tubes, power tubes, and semi­
conductors. In plants which produce several
types of end products or components, each type
is generally made in a separate department.
Subassemblies, such as tuners and record
changers, are often made in plants specializing in
these products. Research and development activi­
ties are performed in establishments specializing
in such work, or in separate departments of
manufacturing plants.
A large proportion of workers in plants manu­
facturing end products are engaged in assembly
operations. Inspecting and testing of subassem­
blies and end products are also important activi­
ties. Some end-product plants have fabricating
and processing departments in which workers do
machining, sheet-metal work, and cleaning and
coating of metals.
In assembling radios, television sets and other
end products produced in large quantities, circuit
boards or panels, transformers, tuners, speakers,
and other major subassemblies are attached
mainly by hand onto a chassis. A moving con­
veyor is often used to transport the chassis from
one work station to another. Assembled units are
placed into metal, plastic, or wooden cabinets.
Where complex electronic products are made in
small lots, as in the case of scientific and research
devices and of electronic equipment used in space
exploration, one or two workers may assemble a
complete unit by hand.
Semiautomatic and automatic machinery are
being used more and more to perform processing
and assembly operations in end-equipment plants,
particularly where products are mass-produced.
For example, in the manufacture of circuit
boards, many plants use automatic punch presses
to make holes in thin sheets of plastic (one side
of which is coated with a thin layer of copper)
so that components can be attached. Machines
are used to etch electrical circuits, which replace
wires, on the circuit boards. Machines also posi­
tion components into the proper holes in the
circuit boards. Mechanical devices bend the wires
or metal “ ears” on the bottom of the components,
locking them into place on the board. Wire
leads on the components are soldered to the
etched circuits in one continuous operation (called
“ dip” or “ wave” soldering).



ice) ; the rest are in white-collar jobs (engi­
neering, scientific, and other technical jobs, and
administrative, clerical, and sales jobs). Approx­
imately half o f all the white-collar workers are
engaged in research and development work and
related activities.
The proportions of plant and white-collar
workers differ from one establishment to an­
other, depending mainly on the products being
manufactured. For example, the proportion of
plant workers in establishments producing con­
sumer products is generally higher tftan in estab­
lishments manufacturing military and space
products. This may be seen from the following
occupational distributions of the work force in
military-space and consumer products manufac­
turing establishments in 1962.
E le c tr o n ic s establish­
m e n ts m a n u fa c tu r in g :
M ilita r y
and s p a c e
p r o d u c ts

Inspector uses magnifying glass to check negative used in
printing electrical circuits on circuit boards
O cc u p a tio n

Parts used in end products are usually brought
to the assembly line by hand truck since most
electronic parts are not bulky. They may be
loose in boxes, fed from hoppers (receptacles
for parts), or held in special containers or jigs.
During assembly operations, components and
subassemblies are inspected and tested to locate
faulty parts or connections or other defects.
In components manufacturing plants, most
assembly work is done by machine. Some types
of components are usually assembled by hand,
such as experimental parts, special purpose tubes,
and extremely tiny transistors used in military
and space equipment. Electronic components are
inspected and tested many times, beginning with
visual inspection of raw materials as they enter
the plant and continuing through all stages of

Electronics Manufacturing Occupations
A wide variety o f occupations, requiring a
broad range of training and skills, is found in
plants manufacturing electronic products. A p ­
proximately 3 out of every 5 workers in elec­
tronics manufacturing are in plant jobs (pro­
duction, maintenance, transportation, and serv­

C o n su m e r
p r o d u cts

( P e r c e n t o f w orkers')

All occupations__________________

100. 0

100. 0

White-collar workers___________________
Engineers and other technical work­
Engineers and scientists__________
Technicians (including draftsmen),
A d m in istra tiv e and supervisory
Clerical and stenographic workers , ,

60. 0

30. 0

33. 4
21. 0
1 2 .4

11. 0
6. 0
5 .0

13. 2
13. 4

1 2 .0
7. 0

Plant workers___________________________
Inspectors and testers_____________
Processing workers________________
Machinists and repairmen________
Sheet-metal workers______________
Tool and die makers______________
Plumbers and pipefitters__________
Semiskilled and unskilled____________
Inspectors and testers_____________
Fabricating workers_______ , ______
Processing workers________________
Shipping and receiving workers___
Material handlers (including truckdrivers) _______________________
Custodial and janitorial workers.,

40. 0
70. 0
12. 6
6. 8
5. 2 -----------1. 1
5. 1
-----------3. 7
. 1
27. 4
63. 2
1 1 .0
4 2 .0
3. 1
14. 4
3. 7
1. 2
3. 1
1. 2
1. 3
1. 2
1. 5
3. 4

2. 2

More than two-fifths of the workers employed
in electronics manufacturing plants are women.
In some plants, particularly those producing
tubes and semiconductors, women account for half
or more of total employment. Most women are
employed as semiskilled plant workers, chiefly as
assemblers, inspectors, and testers, and also as
office workers. Opportunities for women exist
in nearly all types of jobs in electronics, however.
Professional and Technical Occupations. A large
proportion of electronics manufacturing workers
are in engineering, scientific, and other technical
jobs. Engineers and scientists alone represent
about 1 out of every 7 electronics workers. Gen­
erally, they account for a much larger proportion
o f employment in plants making military and
space equipment than in those producing other
types of electronic products.
The largest group o f engineers are electrical or
electronics engineers. They are generally em­
ployed in research and development, although
many work in production operations as design
engineers or as test methods and quality control
engineers. Electronics engineers also work as
field engineers, sales engineers, or engineering
liaison men.
Substantial numbers of mechanical engineers
and industrial engineers are also employed in
electronics manufacturing plants. Mechanical
engineers work as design engineers in product
development and in tool and equipment design.
They work also as plant engineers—chiefly con­
cerned with the maintenance, layout, and opera­
tion o f plant equipment. Most industrial engi­
neers work as production engineers or as effi­
ciency, methods, or time-study engineers. Other
engineers employed in electronics manufactur­
ing include chemical engineers and ceramic engi­
Physicists make up the largest group o f scien­
tists in electronics manufacturing. Most of them
do research and development work in connection
with such products as microwave tubes and micro­
miniaturized components and circuits. Micro­
miniaturization refers to the development of
extremely tiny, light-weight electronic devices
which consume very small amounts of power. A
large proportion of scientists in electronics manu­
facturing are chemists and metallurgists, employed


mainly in research work and in materials testing.
Mathematicians and statisticians work with en­
gineers and scientists on complex mathematical
and statistical problems, especially in the design
of military and space equipment and computers.
Statisticians are also employed in the field of
quality control. Industrial designers work on the
design o f electronic products and the equipment
used to manufacture them.
Technicians—such as electronics technicians,
draftsmen, engineering aids, laboratory tech­
nicians, and mathematical assistants—represent
a large group o f electronics manufacturing work­
ers, roughly 1 out of every 10. They mainly
assist engineers and scientists.
Many electronics technicians are engaged in
research and development work, helping engi­
neers in the design and construction o f experi­
mental models. They are also employed by man­
ufacturers to work on electronic equipment in
customers’ establishments.
Other electronics
technicians work in highly technical inspecting,
testing, and assembly jobs in the engineering
laboratories of firms manufacturing electronic
Draftsmen are usually employed in engineering
departments to prepare drawings from sketches
or specifications furnished by engineers. Manu­
facturers o f military and space equipment gen­
erally employ a higher proportion o f draftsmen
than manufacturers of other types o f electronic

Courtesy of National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Technicians install electronic equipment in communications


Engineering aids are another important group
of technicians. They assist engineers by making
calculations, sketches, and drawings, and by con­
ducting performance tests on components and
systems. Laboratory technicians help physicists,
chemists, and engineers by performing such duties
as setting up apparatus and assisting in labora­
tory analyses and experiments. Some laboratory
technicians may themselves conduct analyses and
experiments, usually of a standardized, routine
nature. Mathematical assistants help to solve
mathematical problems, following procedures
outlined by mathematicians. They also operate
test equipment used in the development of elec­
tronic computers.
Technical writers work closely with engineers,
particularly in plants making military-space and
industrial-commercial products and in establish­
ments doing research and development work.
They prepare training and technical manuals
describing the operation and maintenance of elec­
tronic equipment. They also prepare catalogs,
product literature, and project reports and pro­
posals. Specifications writers compile lists of
required measurements and materials. Technical
illustrators draw pictures of electronic equipment,
for technical publications and sales literature.
Administrative, Clerical, and Related Occupa­
tions. A large number of workers in electronics
manufacturing plants are in administrative or
other office jobs. Administrative workers include
purchasing agents, sales executives, personnel
workers, and advertising personnel. Clerks, sec­
retaries, stenographers, typists, and business ma­
chine operators, many of whom are women, are
among the thousands of other office workers
employed by electronics manufacturing firms. A
small but growing proportion of these office
workers operate electronic computers and aux­
iliary equipment. Most of these computers are
used to process office records, including payroll,
production, sales, and inventory data.
Plant Occupations. About three-fifths of elec­
tronics manufacturing employees are plant work­
ers. They work in assembly, inspecting and test­
ing, machining, fabricating, processing, mainte­
nance, and other plant operations. The propor­
tion of workers in each of these operations differs
among electronics plants, depending largely on

whether end products or components are pro­
duced, and the types manufactured. For example,
the proportion of assemblers is higher in plants
making consumer end products than in plants
producing military and space equipment. It is
also higher in plants producing semiconductors
and receiving tubes than in plants making other
electronic components. The proportion of machin­
ing and fabricating workers is usually higher
among manufacturers of military and space
equipment than of other types of products. Plants
making components, particularly those making
semiconductors, generally employ a higher pro­
portion of processing workers than plants mak­
ing end products.
Assembly occupations (D.O.T. 6-98.010 through
.350; 7-00.007 through .970). Assemblers make
up the largest group of electronics plant work­
ers. Both end-product and component manufac­
turing firms employ assemblers with many differ­
ent skills. However, most assemblers are semi­
skilled workers.
Most end products are assembled mainly by
hand, with small handtools, soldering irons, and
light wielding devices Assemblers use diagrams,
models, and color-coded parts and wires to help
them in their work. Some assembly work is
done by following instructions presented on
color slides and tape recordings. Color slides
flash a picture of an assembly sequence on a
viewing screen while the assembler listens to
recorded directions.
Precision assemblers install components and
subassemblies into end products in wdiich moving
parts and mechanisms must operate within clear­
ances measured in thousandths of an inch. Some
of these assembly workers do repair work, experi­
mental and developmental work, and model as­
sembly work. Most precision assemblers are
employed in the manufacture of military-space
and industrial-commercial electronic equipment.
Machines are used in some assembly work on
end products. For example, in putting together
subassemblies such as circuit boards, automatic
machines are often used to position components
on the boards and to solder connections. Here
the assemblers work as machine operators or
Most components are assembled by machines,
since their assembly involves many separate but

simple and repetitive operations. Even some
types of miniaturized transistors and other com­
ponents, made with parts small enough to pass
through the eye of a needle, are now assembled
on highly complex machines. Some of these
machines are automatically controlled.
Hand assembly is needed for some components,
such as receiving tubes, special purpose tubes, and
some types o f transistors, diodes, capacitors, and
resistors. Hand assemblers usually perform a
single operation on these components as they move
down the assembly line, but some may completely
assemble a particular type o f component. Tiny
components are often hand-assembled under
magnifying glasses or powerful microscopes.
Hand assemblers may sometimes use machines
to assist them in performing assembly operations
on components. For example, precision welding
equipment may be used to weld connections in
microminiature components and circuit assem­
blies. Some circuit assemblies are so small that
as many as 100 components may be precision
welded in a cubic inch of space. Machines may
also be used to position and hold component parts
during assembly operations.
Hand assemblers are also employed in elec­
tronics research laboratories and in the research
and development departments o f electronics man­
ufacturers. These workers— frequently called
electronics technicians—generally do difficult
assembly work on small quantities o f complex,
often experimental, equipment. They may also
work on the development of new ways to assem­
ble large quantities of components or subassem­
blies by machine. Some electronics technicians
install subassemblies into complex systems such
as those in guided missiles. These hand assem­
blers usually must know enough electronics theory
to understand the operation o f the items being
Most assemblers are women. They are em­
ployed mainly as machine operators or tenders
and as hand assemblers of items made in large
quantities. Men are chiefly employed in experi­
mental assembly work, in model assembly, and
in assembly jobs requiring relatively heavy work.
Men are also employed in assembly departments
as “ trouble shooters.” These workers analyze end
products and subassemblies which have failed


Assemblers use microscopes to put together transistors in
dust-free room

routine performance tests, to pinpoint the exact
cause of faulty operation.
Machining occupations. Metal machining jobs
account for a significant number of plant jobs
in electronics manufacturing plants. Machine
tool operators and machinists operate powerdriven machine tools to produce metal parts of
electronic products. Toolmakers construct and
repair jigs and fixtures used in the fabrication
and assembly o f parts. Diemakers specialize in
making metal forms (dies) used in punch and
power presses to shape metal parts.
Fabricating occupations. Many different fab­
ricating occupations are found in electronics
manufacturing, but the number of workers in
each of these jobs is not large. Among the
fabricating workers are sheet-metal workers who
make frames, chassis, and cabinets. Glass blow­
ers and glass lathe operators (D.O.T. 7-00.035)
are used chiefly in electronic tube experimenta­
tion and development work; in the manufacture
of special purpose tubes, which are made in small
numbers; and in rebuilding television picture
tubes. Other fabricating workers include punch
press operators, blanking machine operators
(D.O.T. 8-98.01), and shear operators.
Some fabricating jobs involve the molding,
firing, and glazing of ceramics used as insulating


materials in many components. Workers may
also mold plastic components. In tube manufac­
turing, special fabricating workers are employed.
For example, grid lathe operators (D.O.T. 698.251) make grids (devices in electronic tubes
which control the flow o f electrons) by winding
fine wire around two heavy parallel wires. Other
fabricating workers include spot welders, coil
ivinders (D.O.T. 6-98.250 and 6-99.013 through
.016) and crystal grinders and -finishers (D.O.T.
6-98.080, .084, and .085).
Processing occupations. A relatively small but
important group of electronics manufacturing
workers are engaged in processing activities,
chiefly in plants producing electronic components.
Electroplaters and tinners (D.O.T. 6-74.120)
coat many parts with metal. Anodizers (D.O.T.
74.910) treat parts in electrolytic and chem­
ical baths to prevent corrosion. Silk screen oper­
ators print patterns on circuit boards and on
parts of electronic components. Etching equip­
ment operators do chemical etching o f copper on
circuit boards.
Processing workers also impregnate or coat
coils and other electronic components with waxes,
oils, or other materials. Some operate machines
which encase microminiature components in plas­
tic resin to join and insulate them in circuits,
seal out moisture, and reduce chances o f connec­
tion failure caused by heat and vibration.
Another group of processing workers oper­
ate furnaces, ovens, and kilns, used chiefly to
harden ceramics, bake on coatings, and eliminate
contamination by gases and foreign materials.
Operators of infrared ovens and hydrogen fur­
nace fivers (D.O.T. 6-98.280) rid tubes of foreign
deposits. In tube manufacturing, exhaust oper­
ators (D.O.T. 7-00.018) and sealers (D.O.T. 700.025 and .054) operate gas flame machines
which seal the mount (the part of an electronic
tube consisting of a Bakelite base and stem) in
the tube, clear the tube of impurities, exhaust
the gas, and seal the tube.
Testing and inspection. Testing and inspection
in electronics manufacturing begin when raw
materials enter the plants, and continue through­
out fabricating operations. Finished components
and end products undergo thorough testing and
inspection, frequently including operation for a
period o f time, before shipment.

In end-product manufacturing plants, testers
use voltmeters, oscilloscopes, and other test meters
to make certain that components, subassemblies,
and end products conform to specifications. Many
of these workers have job titles that indicate
the type of work they do, such as analyzer, final
tester, tuner tester, and operational tester.
Some testing jobs require technically trained
workers who have had several years of experience
in electronic testing. These jobs are commonly
found in research and development work, where
electronics technicians test, adjust, and aline
circuits and systems as part o f their overall
responsibility. These jobs are also found in
complex production work, such as the manufac­
ture of missiles and spacecraft.
In component manufacturing plants, compo­
nents are checked manually by testers, using
various types o f test meters, or routed mechan­
ically through automatic test equipment. Some
automatic equipment can check 20 or more com­
ponent characteristics and produce a punched
tape of test results. Although many of these
workers are simply called component testers,
others have job titles which reflect the type of
components they test, such as transformer tester,
coil tester, and magnetic component tester. W ork­
ers who feed or monitor automatic test equipment
are often called test-set operators or testingmachine operators.

Tester checks and adjusts test pattern on T V picture tube

The work of inspectors in end-product plants
varies from checking incoming materials to in­
specting subassemblies and final products for
flaws in circuit assembly, etching, plating, paint­
ing, and labeling. Electronic assembly inspectors
(D.O.T. 4-98.101) examine assembled electronic
units to make certain that they conform to blue­
prints and specifications, and check wire routing,
electrical connections, and quality of units.
Mechanical and precision inspectors check me­
chanical assemblies and precision parts. Inspec­
tors in end-product plants may use tools such as
measuring scales, micrometers, calipers, and mag­
nifying glasses in their work.
Inspectors in component manufacturing plants
check incoming raw materials and subassemblies
before, during, and after fabricating and proc­
essing operations. They may inspect wire leads
on diodes for straightness or length, wire winding
on coils for evenness or breakage, and completed
tubes for loose wires, scratched paint, corrosion,
and defective etches and identifying labels.
Some inspectors make repairs on defective com­
Tools used by inspectors in components plants
may include magnifying glasses, micrometers,
calipers, tweezers, and, in some circumstances,
microscopes. These inspectors may have job
titles that indicate the work they do, such as
incoming materials inspector, plating inspector,
power tube inspector, coil inspector, machine
parts inspector, and precision inspector.
Maintenance occupations. Many maintenance
workers with different types of training are em­
ployed in electronics manufacturing plants to take
care of machinery and equipment. Skilled elec­
tricians are responsible for the proper operation
of electrical equipment. Machine and equipment
repairmen perform mechanical repairs. Hydrau­
lic mechanics specialize in maintaining hydraulic
equipment. Maintenance machinists and welders
build and repair equipment, jigs, and fixtures.
Air-conditioning and refrigeration mechanics are
employed in electronics plants which are airconditioned and have special refrigerated and
dust-free rooms. Painters, plumbers, pipefitters,
carpenters, sheet-metal workers, and other build­
ing maintenance craftsmen are also employed in
electronics plants.


Other plant occupations. Parts changer is an­
other important occupation in electronics manu­
facturing plants. These workers repair assembled
electronic products which have been tagged for
replacement of parts. Women are frequently
employed as parts changers.
Many workers are employed in materials move­
ment and handling. These workers include oper­
ators of plant trucks and tractors; forklift opera­
tors who stack crates and load and unload trucks
and boxcars; and truckdrivers who handle trans­
portation outside the plant. Other occupations
include boiler operator and stationary engineer.
(Detailed discussions o f professional, technical,
mechanical, and other occupations found not only
in electronics manufacturing plants but also in
other industries as well are given elsewhere in
this Handbook, in sections covering the individ­
ual occupations. See index for page numbers.)

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement
Electronics manufacturing plants employ many
engineers, scientists, and technicians, because of
the technical nature of plant production opera­
tions and the great emphasis on research and
development work. Beginning engineering jobs
are usually filled by recent graduates o f engi­
neering colleges (some with advanced degrees).
A small number of workers without college
degrees are upgraded to professional engineering
classifications from such occupations as engineer­
ing assistant and electronics technician. Workers
who become engineers in this way usually have
taken advanced electronics courses in night school
or under other training programs. To keep up
with new developments in their fields and to help
them qualify for promotion, professional and
technical personnel obtain additional training,
read technical publications, and attend lectures
and technical demonstrations.
Almost all mathematicians, physicists, and other
scientists employed in electronics manufacturing
plants have college degrees and many have ad­
vanced degrees. Job prospects are usually better
for scientists with at least a master’s degree than
for those with only a bachelor’s degree.
Technicians generally need some specialized
training to qualify for their jobs. Most electronics
technicians attend either a public, private, or
Armed Forces technical school. Some obtain their



training through apprenticeships, usually o f 3
or 4 years’ duration. Applicants with a high
school education, including courses in mathema­
tics and science, are preferred for these appren­
ticeships. Some workers become electronics tech­
nicians by being upgraded from such jobs as
tester and experimental assembler, after they
have developed required skills on the job and
acquired the necessary knowledge in basic elec­
tronics theory, mathematics, drafting, and read­
ing of schematic diagrams. This knowledge is
usually obtained by taking courses in companyoperated classes, night school, junior college, tech­
nical school, or by correspond