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485

MECHANICS AND REPAIRMEN

ing, and machine shop practice
are useful subjects for young men
interested in becoming mill­
wrights. B e c a u s e millwrights
often put together and take apart
complicated machinery, mechani­
cal aptitude is important to young
men entering the trade. Strength
and agility are other important
qualifications for m i l l w r i g h t
work, which often requires con­
siderable lifting and climbing.

Em ploym ent O utlook

industrialized States of Michigan,
Ohio, Pennsylvania, Illinois, New
York, and Indiana.
T rain in g and O ther Q ualifications
Millwrights learn the trade by
acquiring the skills informally or
through apprenticeship programs.
Those workers who pick up the
trade informally usually work as
helpers to skilled millwrights over
a period of years until they ac­
quire sufficient knowledge and
experience to be classified as
skilled workers. However, most
training authorities agree that
apprenticeship p r o g r a m s give
young persons a more thorough
preparation for this skilled trade.




Apprenticeship programs general­
ly last 4 years. Apprentices in this
trade are given shop training in
dismantling, moving, erecting,
and repairing machinery and
other equipment. They also are
trained in floor layout, the instal­
lation of machinery and other
equipment, carpentry, welding,
rigging, and the use of structural
steel, wood, and concrete. The
apprenticeship 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 18 and
26.
High school courses in science,
mathematics, mechanical draw­

Employment of millwrights is
expected to i n c r e a s e slowly
through the 1970’s. The building
of new plants, the addition of new
machinery, changes in plant lay­
outs, and the maintenance of in­
creasing amounts of heavy and
complex machinery and other
equipment are factors expected to
increase employment of mill­
wrights.
In addition to new job openings
that will be created by industrial
expansion and increased mechani­
zation, a few thousand workers
will be needed annually to re­
place millwrights who transfer to
other lines of work, retire, or die.
Retirements and deaths alone
are expected to result in about
1,500 job openings annually.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
The earnings of millwrights de­
pend mainly on the area of the
country in which they are em­
ployed and the type of business
in which their employer is en­
gaged. A v e r a g e straight-time
hourly earnings of millwrights
employed in manufacturing in­
dustries in 43 metropolitan areas
surveyed in 1967-68 ranged from
$3.06 in Providence, R. I., to $4.24
in Detroit, Mich. Nearly twothirds of these workers earned
$3.60 an hour or more. Straight-

486

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

time hourly earnings for mill­
wrights in 12 of the 43 metropoli­
tan areas, selected to present
wage data from various areas and
regions of the country, during the
1967-68 survey period appear in
the accompanying tabulation.

City

Rate per hour
Industrial
millwrights
( manufacturing
industries)

Akron ............................ ............ $3.96
3.40
Boston ..........................
Buffalo ..........................
3.91
Fort Worth ...................
3.24
Los Angeles-Long Beach and
Anaheim-Santa Ana-Garden
Grove ..................................... 4.19
Louisville .......................
4.10
3.88
Minneapolis-St. Paul ...
New Haven ...................
3.08
New Orleans .................
3.80
Omaha ...........................
3.84
Rockford .......................
3.80
Trenton .........................
4.03

Millwrights employed by com­
panies doing contract installation
work and by construction com­
panies usually have higher hourly
wage rates than those employed
in manufacturing industries. For
example, the minimum average
hourly wage rates for millwrights
under union-management con­
tracts doing construction work
ranged from $4.35 in Jackson,
Miss., and Shreveport, La., to
$6.16 in Cincinnati, Ohio, on July
1, 1968, according to a national
survey of building trades workers
in 68 large cities.
Wage rates for apprentices gen­
erally start at 50 percent or more
of the skilled worker’s rate and
increase to the journeyman’s 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 unem­




ployment between jobs. In addi­
tion, these workers may frequent­
ly be assigned to jobs away from
their homes.
The work of millwrights in­
volves certain hazards. For ex­
ample, there is danger of being
struck by falling objects or by
machinery that is being moved.
There also is the danger of fall­
ing from high work places. In ad­
dition, millwrights are subject to
the usual shop hazards, such as
cuts and bruises. Accidents have
been reduced by the use of pro­
tective devices, such as safety
belts, safety hats, eye protection,
and shoes with metal tips. Mill­
wrights must frequently work on
dirty, greasy equipment.
Most millwrights belong to la­
bor unions, among which are the
International Association of Ma­
chinists and Aerospace Workers;
United Brotherhood of Carpen­
ters and Joiners of America (con­
struction millwrights); United
Steelworkers of America; Interna­
tional Union, United Automobile,
Aerospace and Agricultural Im­
plement Workers of America; In­
ternational Brotherhood of Pulp,
Sulphite and Paper Mill Workers;
and the International Union of
Electrical, Radio and Machine
Workers. Employer-union con­
tracts covering millwrights usual­
ly include provisions for benefits
such as paid holidays and vaca­
tions; hospitalization, medical,
and surgical insurance; life insur­
ance; sickness and accident insur­
ance; and retirement pensions.

Sources of Additional Inform ation
United Brotherhood of Carpenters
and Joiners of America, 101
Constitution Ave. NW., Wash­
ington, D.C. 20001.

TELEVISION AND RADIO
SERVICE TECHNICIANS
(D.O.T. 720.281)

N atu re of the W ork
Skilled television and radio
service technicians use their
knowledge of electrical and elec­
tronic parts and circuits to install
and repair a growing number of
electronic products. Of these, tele­
vision receivers are by far the
most prominent. Other major
electronic products are radios (in­
cluding home, automobile, and
two-way mobile radios), phono­
graphs, hi-fidelity and stereo­
phonic sound equipment, inter­
communication equipment, tape
recorders, and public address sys­
tems. Many service technicians
specialize in repairing one kind of
equipment; for example, color
television receivers or automobile
radios.
Most of the skilled work done
by television and radio service
technicians involves diagnosing
trouble in equipment and making
necessary repairs and adjust­
ments. Equipment may operate
unsatisfactorily or break down
completely because of faulty
tubes, transistors, resistors, and
other components; poor connec­
tions; aging of parts; and dirt,
moisture, heat, and other basic
troubles that affect all electronic
equipment. When service tech­
nicians turn on television receiv­
ers or other equipment needing
repair, signs of unsatisfactory per­
formance, such as absence or dis­
tortion of picture or sound, may
indicate what is wrong. Their job
is to check and evaluate each pos­
sible cause of trouble, beginning
with the simplest and most com­
mon cause— tube failure. In other
routine checks, they look for loose
or broken connections and for

MECHANICS AND REPAIRMEN

parts that are charred or burned,
due to excessive current or mis­
handling.
When routine checks do not lo­
cate the cause of trouble, service
technicians use meter and elec­
tronic test equipment to check
suspected circuits. For example,
they may measure voltages until
an unusual or irregular measure­
ment indicates that part of the
circuitry causing trouble. Com­
monly used test instruments are
vacuum tube voltmeters, multi­
meters, oscilloscopes, signal gen­
erators, and other specialized in­
struments.
On service calls, service tech­
nicians advise customers as to
what may be wrong with receiv­
ers, and whether receivers must
be taken to shops for further
analysis and repair. If possible,
they explain what must be done
to repair receivers and estimate




487
the cost of such repairs. After
receivers are repaired on the cus­
tomers’ premises or returned from
shops, service technicians explain
what has been done. They may
adjust the equipment to put it in
proper operating condition.
Work usually done by televi­
sion and radio service technicians
in homes or other places where
equipment is used includes mak­
ing simple electrical checks with
a voltmeter, changing tubes, and
making necessary adjustments,
including focusing the picture or
correcting the color balance on a
color receiver. They check high
voltage circuits in color TV sets for
excessive X-ray radiation. Service
technicians who make customer
service calls carry tubes and other
components that are easily re­
placed in the customer’s home.
Apprentices or less experienced
television service technicians may

install or repair antennas on roofs
or in attics and run lead in wires
from antennas to receivers.
Radios, television receivers,
and other equipment small
enough to be carried by customers
usually are repaired in service
shops. Larger television receivers
are repaired in shops when they
develop troubles which appear
after receivers have been operat­
ing for a few hours, or when the
troubles can be located only with
the more complex test equipment
available in shops.
Television and radio service
technicians usually refer to wiring
diagrams and service manuals
that show connections within re­
ceivers, provide adjustment infor­
mation, and describe causes of
trouble associated with unusual
symptoms. They must know how
to use soldering irons, wire cut­
ters, long-nosed pliers, wrenches,
screwdrivers
and,
sometimes,
magnifying glasses when they re­
move, adjust, or replace parts,
components, or complete equip­
ment such as automobile radios.

Places of Em ploym ent
About 125,000 television and
radio service technicians were es­
timated to be employed in early
1969, of whom about one-third
were self-employed. About threefourths of all service technicians
worked in service shops or in
stores that sell and service tele­
vision receivers, radios, and other
electronic products. Most of the
remaining s e r v i c e technicians
were employed by government ag­
encies and manufacturers, includ­
ing manufacturers that operated
their own service branches.
Television and radio service
technicians are employed in al­
most every city because the prod­
ucts they service are used every­
where. However, employment of
these workers is distributed geo-

488
graphically in much the same way
as the Nation’s population. Thus,
they are employed mainly in the
highly populated States and ma­
jor metropolitan areas.

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Training in electronics is re­
quired to become a highly skilled
television and radio service tech­
nician capable of working on vari­
ous types of electronic equipment.
Technical, vocational, or high
school training in electronic sub­
jects, mathematics, and physics
have helped men to qualify as
expert television and radio serv­
ice technicians. Home study (cor­
respondence school) courses are
also helpful. Young men who
enter military service may wish
to investigate opportunities for
training and work experience in
servicing electronic equipment be­
cause such experience often is val­
uable in civilian electronics work,
including television and radio
servicing. From 2 to 3 years’ com­
bined training and on-the-job ex­
perience are required to become a
qualified television and radio ser­
vice technician. Men without pre­
vious training may be hired as
helpers or apprentices if they
show aptitude for the work or,
like the amateur ( “ ham” ) radio
operator, have a hobby in elec­
tronics.
An important part of the serv­
ice technicians’ training is pro­
vided by many manufacturers,
employers, and trade associa­
tions. These organizations con­
duct training programs when new
models or new products are intro­
duced, as part of a continuing
effort to keep service technicians
abreast of the latest technical
servicing and business methods.
Service technicians also keep up
with technical developments by
studying manufacturers’ instruc­




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

tion books and technical maga­
zines, and by attending training
meetings covering electronics
service work.
Programs to train unemployed
and underemployed workers for
entry jobs in the television and
radio service field were in opera­
tion in 19 states, in 1968, under
the Manpower Development and
Training Act. These programs
usually lasted from about 6
months to a year. Given addition­
al experience or training, which
may include an apprenticeship,
graduates of these programs may
become skilled service technicians.
Television and radio service
technicians must know how elec­
tronic components and circuits
work, and why they function as
they do. They also must be able
to understand technical publica­
tions. Other essential qualifica­
tions include the ability to manip­
ulate small parts and tools, good
hand-eye coordination, normal
hearing, and good eyesight and
color vision.
Television and radio service
technicians who work in large re­
pair shops or service centers may
be promoted to assistant foreman,
foreman, and service manager.
Frequently, they are able to ob­
tain jobs as electronics mechanic
or technician in manufacturing
industries or government agen­
cies. Those who are employed by
manufacturers can advance to
higher paying occupations such as
technical writer, sales engineer,
design engineer, and service train­
ing instructor. In addition, ex­
perienced men who have sufficient
funds, adequate business manage­
ment training, and ability may
open their own sales and repair
shops.
Persons interested in advancing
to positions such as electronic
technician can improve their op­
portunities by taking trade
school, correspondence, or tech­
nical institute courses in elec-

gineering, automatic controls, entronic engineering, television en­
gineering mathematics, and other
subjects related to electronics.
In 1969, television and radio
service technicians were required
to be licensed in several States
and cities. To obtain a license,
applicants are required to pass an
examination designed to test their
skill in the use of testing equip­
ment and their knowledge of elec­
tronic circuits and components.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of television and
radio service technicians is ex­
pected to increase moderately
throughout the 1970’s. In addi­
tion to the openings that will
arise from growth, thousands of
job openings will result annually
from the need to replace experi­
enced service technicians who re­
tire, die, or transfer to other fields
of work. Death and retirements
alone are expected to provide
about 1,300 job openings each
year through the 1970’s.
Employment of service tech­
nicians is expected to increase
over the long run, along with the
growing number of radios, tele­
vision receivers, phonographs, and
other home entertainment prod­
ucts in use throughout the 1970’s.
Factors that will contribute to
this growth include rising popula­
tion and family formations, and
rising levels of personal income.
In 1967, more than 9 out of every
10 households had one television
receiver or more. During the next
decade, the number of households
with two television receivers or
more is expected to increase sig­
nificantly, mainly because of the
growing demand for color and
lightweight, portable television
receivers. Other consumer elec­
tronics products that are expected
to be used increasingly include
stereophonic radios, phonographs,

489

MECHANICS AND REPAIRMEN

tape recorders, AM-FM radios,
and portable transistor radios.
New consumer products, such as
home video tape recorders, as well
as improved styling and design of
existing products, also will stim­
ulate demand. Greater use of non­
entertainment products, such as
closed-circuit television, two-way
radios, and various medical elec­
tronic devices, also is expected.
For example, closed-circuit tele­
vision is being used increasingly
to monitor production processes
in manufacturing plants, and to
bring educational programs into
classrooms.
In recent years, technological
improvements in television re­
ceivers and radios (such as the
use of transistors in place of
tubes) have reduced the amount
of service this equipment requires.
Technological improvements will
continue to reduce servicing re­
quirements in the years ahead
and may tend to slow employ­
ment growth. However, techno­
logical developments will increase
employment opportunities for
those television and radio service
technicians who have theoretical
as well as practical knowledge of
electronic circuits and know how
to use the latest test equipment.
Servicing television receivers, ra­
dios, and related electronic equip­
ment is a complex field because
of constant technological ad­
vances. Service technicians will
have to update their training to
cope with these changes.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
National earnings data are not
available for television and radio
service technicians. However, in­
formation obtained in major met­
ropolitan areas from proprietors
of independent service shops and
manufacturers who operate serv­
ice centers indicated that, in
early 1969, many service tech­




nicians in entry jobs had straighttime weekly earnings ranging
from about $80 to $120; many
experienced service technicians
had weekly earnings ranging from
about $120 to $240. Some “ in­
side” (shop) service technicians
received higher weekly earnings
than “ outside”
(field) tech­
nicians.
Television and radio service
technicians employed in local ser­
vice shops or dealer service de­
partments commonly work a 6day, 48-hour week. In large shops,
including manufacturers’ service
branches, they usually work a
basic 40-hour week. Service tech­
nicians often work more than 8
hours a day and receive higher
rates of pay for overtime work.
Some employers of television and
radio service technicians provide
paid vacations and holidays after
a specified length of service. Many
also provide or help pay for health
and life insurance benefits. Some
shops are unionized.
Service on television, radio, and
other home entertainment prod­
ucts is performed in shops and
homes where working conditions
are usually pleasant. Inside men
work at benches, normally pro­
vided with stools. Outside men
may spend several hours a day
driving between shops and cus­
tomers. Some physical strain is
involved in lifting and carrying
receivers. Perhaps the greatest
hazard is the risk of falling from
roofs while installing or repairing
antennas. Electrical shock is an­
other hazard, but it rarely has
caused serious injury.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Additional information about
jobs in television servicing may be
obtained from local service tech­
nicians, local dealers who sell and
service television receivers and
other electronic equipment, local

television service associations,
and manufacturers who operate
their own service centers. Tech­
nical and vocational schools that
offer courses in television and ra­
dio repair, or electronics, can
provide helpful information about
training. In addition, the local
office of the State employment
service would be a source of in­
formation about the Manpower
Development and Training Act
and other programs that provide
training opportunities.
Information about the work of
television and radio service tech­
nicians may also be obtained
from:
National Alliance of Television
Associations, 5908 South Troy
Street, Chicago, Ili. 60629.

TRUCK MECHANICS AND
BUS MECHANICS
(D.O.T. 620.281)

N ature of the W ork
Truck and bus mechanics keep
the Nation’s trucks and buses in
good operating condition. Truck
mechanics maintain and repair
heavy trucks used for intercity
travel and on mining and con­
struction jobs, and medium and
small trucks used for local
hauling. Bus mechanics maintain
and repair a variety of buses,
ranging from small ones used for
local transit to large transconti­
nental buses. Although many me­
chanical parts of large trucks and
buses are similar to automobile
parts, truck and bus mechanics
repair large engines, complex
transmissions and differentials,
air-brakes, and other components
that are different from those
found in automobiles.
Mechanics employed in the
shops of organizations that main-

490

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

and transmission jacks; and weld­
ing and flame cutting equipment.
They also use various types of
testing devices to help locate mal­
functions. The latter may include
relatively simple testing devices
such as voltmeters, coil testers,
and compression gages, or compli­
cated analytical equipment such
as oscilloscopes and dynamomet­
ers. Mechanics use hydraulic
jacks and hoists to lift and move
heavy parts.
When performing heavy work,
such as removing engines and
transmissions, two mechanics
may work as a team, or a skilled
mechanic may be assisted by an
apprentice or helper. Mechanics
generally work under the super­
vision of a shop foreman or serv­
ice manager.

Places of Em ploym ent

Truck mechanic repairs fan assembly of large truck.

tain and repair their own vehicles
may spend much of their time
performing preventive mainte­
nance. During a periodic mainte­
nance check, mechanics inspect
brake systems, steering mechan­
isms, wheel bearings, universal
joints, and many other parts, and
make needed repairs or adjust­
ments. By performing preventive
maintenance, mechanics help as­
sure safe vehicle operation, pre­
vent wear and damage to parts,
and reduce costly breakdowns.
When trucks and buses do not
operate properly, these workers
determine the cause of the trouble
and make the necessary repairs.
In large repair shops, mechanics
may specialize in one or a few
kinds of repair. For example, some
mechanics specialize in major en­
gine or transmission repair. If an
engine needs to be rebuilt, the




mechanic removes it from the ve­
hicle and disassembles it. He ex­
amines parts, such as valves, pis­
tons, rods, and bearings for wear
or defects, and replaces or repairs
defective parts. Many mechanics
specialize in the repair of diesel
engines that power trucks and
buses. Diesel and gasoline engines
are similar but have different fuel
and ignition systems. Therefore,
a mechanic who has worked only
on gasoline engines needs special
training before he can qualify as a
diesel mechanic. (See statement
on Diesel Mechanics elsewhere
in the Handbook.)
Truck and bus mechanics use
common handtools such as screw­
drivers, pliers, and wrenches;
power and machine tools such as
pneumatic wrenches, drills, grind­
ers, and lathes; special purpose
tools such as pump seal installers

A large proportion of the esti­
mated 93,000 truck mechanics
employed in 1968 worked for
firms that own fleets of trucks.
Fleet owners include trucking
companies and companies that
haul their own products such as
dairies, bakeries, and construc­
tion companies. Other employers
of truck mechanics include truck
dealers, truck manufacturers, in­
dependent truck repair shops,
firms that rent or lease trucks, and
Federal, State, and local govern­
ments.
The large majority of the esti­
mated 17,000 bus mechanics em­
ployed in 1968 worked for local
transit companies and intercity
buslines. Bus manufacturers em­
ployed a relatively small number
of bus mechanics.
Truck and bus mechanics are
employed in every section of the
country, but most of them work
in large towns and cities where
trucking companies, buslines, and
other fleet owners have large re­
pair shops.

MECHANICS AND REPAIRMEN

Train in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and Advancem ent
Most truck or bus mechanics
learn their skills on the job. In
shops where fleets of trucks and
buses are serviced, beginners usu­
ally perform tasks such as clean­
ing, fueling, and lubrication. They
may be required to drive vehicles
in and out of the shop. As be­
ginners gain experience and as va­
cancies become available, they
usually are promoted to mechanic
helpers. In some shops, young
persons— especially those who
have prior automobile repair ex­
perience— are hired as helpers.
Helpers learn mechanics’ skills by
assisting experienced mechanics
in the performance of inspection
and repair work. Most helpers are
able to make minor repairs after
a few months’ experience and are
allowed to handle increasingly
difficult jobs as they prove their
ability. Generally, 3 to 4 years of
on-the-job experience is necessary
to qualify as an all-round truck
or bus mechanic. Additional train­
ing may be necessary for mechan­
ics who wish to specialize in re­
pairing diesel engines.
Most training authorities, in­
cluding joint labor-management
committees for the truck trans­
portation industry, recommend a
formal 4-year apprenticeship as
the best way to learn these trades.
Typical apprenticeship programs
for truck and bus mechanics con­
sist of aproximately 8,000 hours
of shop training and at least 576
hours of related classroom instruc­
tion. Frequently, these programs
include training in both diesel and
gasoline engine repair.
For entry jobs, employers gen­
erally look for young men who
have mechanical aptitude and are
at least 18 years of age and in
good physical condition. Comple­
tion of high school is an advan­
tage in getting an entry mechanic
job because most employers be­




491
lieve it indicates that a young
man can “ finish a job ” and has
advancement potential.
Where the mechanic’s job du­
ties include driving trucks or
buses on public roads, employers
may require applicants to have
a State chauffeur’s license. If the
employer is engaged in interstate
transportation, the applicant also
may be required to meet qualifi­
cations for drivers established by
the U.S. Department of Trans­
portation. He must be at least 21
years of age, able bodied, have
good hearing, and have at least
20/40 eyesight 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 auto­
mobiles); and have a good driv­
ing record.
Young men interested in be­
coming truck or bus mechanics
can gain valuable experience by
taking high school or vocational
school courses in automobile re­
pair. Courses in science and math­
ematics are helpful since they give
a young man a better understand­
ing of how trucks and buses op­
erate. Courses in diesel repair pro­
vide valuable related training.
Practical experience in automo­
bile repair gained from working
in a gasoline service station, train­
ing in the Armed Forces, and
working on automobiles as a hob­
by also is valuable.
Most employers require me­
chanics to purchase their handtools. Experienced mechanics
often have several hundred dollars
invested in tools. Employers ordi­
narily hire beginners who do not
own handtools, but they are ex­
pected to accumulate them as
they gain experience.
Employers sometimes send ex­
perienced mechanics to special
training classes conducted by
truck, bus, diesel engine, and
parts manufacturers. In these
classes, mechanics learn to repair

the latest equipment or receive
special training in subjects such
as diagnosing engine malfunc­
tions.
Experienced mechanics who
have supervisory ability may ad­
vance to shop foremen or service
managers. Truck mechanics who
have sales ability sometimes be­
come truck salesmen. Some me­
chanics open their own gasoline
service stations or independent
repair shops.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of truck mechan­
ics is expected to increase mod­
erately through the 1970’s as a
result of significant increases in
the transportation of freight by
trucks. More trucks will be need­
ed for both local and intercity
hauling as a result of increased
industrial activity, continued de­
centralization of industry, and the
continued movement of the popu­
lation to the suburbs. In addition
to the job openings expected to
occur as a result of employment
growth about 1,300 additional
openings will occur annually be­
cause of job vacancies resulting
from deaths and retirements. Op­
portunities to enter this occupa­
tion also will occur as some me­
chanics transfer to other lines of
work.
Hundreds of job opportunities
for bus mechanics are anticipated
through the 1970’s to replace ex­
perienced mechanics who retire,
die, or transfer to other fields of
work. However the number of bus
mechanics employed during this
period is expected to remain at
approximately the present level.
Continued growth in intercity bus
travel is expected as a result of
increasing population, new and
improved highways, and reduc­
tion of railroad passenger service
in many areas. However, the fa­
vorable employment effect of in-

492
creasing intercity bus travel is
expected to be offset by a decline
in local bus travel as a result of
the growing use of private auto­
mobiles in city and suburban
areas.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
According to a survey covering
metropolitan areas in late 1967
and early 1968, mechanics em­
ployed by trucking companies,
buslines, and other firms that
maintain their own vehicles had
average straight-time hourly earn­
ings of $3.54. Average hourly
earnings of these workers in in­
dividual cities ranged from $2.66
in Chattanooga, Tenn., to $4.45
in San Francisco-Oakland, Calif.
Apprentices’ wage rates gener­
ally start at 50 percent of skilled
workers’ rates and are increased
about every 6 months until a rate
of 90 percent is reached during
the last 6 months of the training
period.
Most mechanics work between
40 and 48 hours per week. Be­
cause many truck and bus firms
provide service around the clock,
they employ mehanics on evening
and night shifts, and on week­
ends. Mechanics usually receive a
higher rate of pay when they work
overtime or on evening or night
shifts, weekends, or holidays.
A large number of employers pro­
vide holiday and vacation pay;
many pay part or all of the cost
of financing employee health and
life insurance programs and other
employee benefits. Laundered
uniforms are furnished free of
charge by some employers.
Truck mechanics and bus me­
chanics are subject to the usual
shop hazards such as cuts and
bruises. If proper safety precau­
tions are not followed, there is
danger of injury when repairing
heavy parts supported on jacks
and hoists. Mechanics handle




O C C U P A T IO N A L O U T L O O K H A N D B O O K

greasy and dirty parts and may
stand or lie in awkward or
cramped positions for extended
periods of time when repairing
vehicles. Work areas usually are
well lighted, heated, and venti­
lated, and many employers pro­
vide locker rooms and shower fa­
cilities. Although most work is
performed indoors, mechanics oc­
casionally make repairs outdoors
when breakdowns occur.
Many truck and bus mechanics
are members of labor unions.
These include the International
Association of Machinists and
Aerospace Workers; the Amalga­
mated Transit Union; the Inter­
national Union, United Automo­
bile, Aerospace and Agricultural
Implement Workers of America;
the Transport Workers Union of
America; the Sheet Metal Work­
ers’ International Association;
and the International Brother­
hood of Teamsters, Chauffeurs,
Warehousemen and Helpers of
America (Ind.).
Sources of A dditional Inform ation
For further information re­
garding work opportunities for
truck or bus mechanics, inquiries
should be directed to local em­
ployers such as trucking compa­
nies, truck dealers, or bus lines;
locals of unions previously men­
tioned; or the local office of the
State employment service. The
State employment service also
may be a source of information
about the Manpower Develop­
ment and Training Act, appren­
ticeship, and other programs that
provide training opportunities.
General information about the
work of truck mechanics and ap­
prenticeship training may be ob­
tained from:
American Trucking Associations,
Inc., 1616 P St. NW., Washing­
ton, D.C. 20036.

VENDING MACHINE
MECHANICS
(D.O.T. 639.381)

N atu re of th e W ork
The convenience of automatic,
24-hour merchandising and the
great variety of items provided
by vending machines have re­
sulted in a nationwide industry
and increasing job opportunities
for skilled mechanics who main­
tain and repair these machines.
The familiar gum ball, cigarette,
or other mechanical, gravity-op­
erated dispensing device no long­
er typifies m o d e r n v e n d i n g
machines. Today, vending ma­
chines include growing numbers
of complex, electrically operated
machines that dispense hot can­
ned foods and ready-to-eat din­
ners, and brew individual cups of
coffee flavored to taste.
Most vending machine me­
chanics work both in repair shops
and at locations where machines
are installed, such as schools, of­
fice buildings, factories, theaters,
transportation terminals, and
hospitals. Some work only in re­
pair shops; others work only in
the field and travel by car or
small truck from one location to
another to make machine repairs.
In the repair shops, mechanics
repair complex vending machine
components,
such
as water
pumps, motors, and relays, and
overhaul machines by replacing
worn or damaged parts. They
also may assemble new machines
in the shop, following instruc­
tional materials supplied by the
manufacturer. After the ma­
chines are assembled, they are
filled with products or ingredi­
ents and test run. When work­
ing on relatively complex ma­
chines— for example, beverage
dispensing machines— mechanics

MECHANICS AND REPAIRMEN

check to see that the machines
dispense proper quantities of in­
gredients and that their refrig­
erating or heating units operate
properly. On gravity-operated
machines,
mechanics
check
springs, plungers, and merchan­
dise-delivery systems. They also
test coin and change-making me­
chanisms. When installing a ma­
chine on location, mechanics
make the necessary water and
electrical connections and re­
check the machines for proper
operation.
When a machine on location is
reported to be defective, the me­
chanic first determines the cause
of the trouble. He inspects the




493

machine for obvious troubles,
such as loose electrical wires,
malfunctions of the coin mechan­
ism, and water and other leaks.
He may test the machine’s com­
ponents to isolate the defective
parts. After the mechanic locates
the cause of the trouble, he may
remove and repair or replace the
defective parts, either on loca­
tion or in his employer’s service
shop.
Preventive m a i n t e n a n c e —
avoiding trouble before it starts—
is another major responsibility of
the mechanic. For example, he
periodically cleans electrical con­
tact points, lubricates, mechanical
points, and adjusts machines

to perform properly. Both in the
service shop and on location, me­
chanics use handtools, such as
wrenches, screwdrivers, hammers,
pliers, pipe cutters, electrical cir­
cuit testers and soldering irons.
In the service shop, they also may
use power tools, such as grinding
wheels, saws, and drills.
Vending machine mechanics
use operating and troubleshoot­
ing manuals to repair machine
systems and components. They
must know how and when to do
soldering or brazing to repair pip­
ing systems; how to read dia­
grams of electrical circuits; and
how to test electrical circuits and
components. Mechanics who in­
stall and repair food vending ma­
chines must know State public
health and sanitation standards
as well as those established un­
der local plumbing codes. They
also must know and comply with
safety
procedures,
especially
when working with electricity
and gas and when lifting heavy
objects.
Repairmen are required to do
some clerical work. For example,
they may fill out reports, prepare
repair-cost estimates, keep parts
inventories, and order parts. If
they are chief mechanics, they
prepare work schedules for other
mechanics. Mechanics employed
by small operating companies fre­
quently service as well as repair
machines. These combination
“ repair-routemen” are responsi­
ble for periodically stocking ma­
chines, collecting money, filling
coin and currency changers, and
keeping daily records of merchan­
dise distributed. (Additional in­
formation about vending machine
routemen is included in the state­
ment on routemen elsewhere in
the Handbook. See index for page
numbers.)
Places of Em ploym ent
In 1968, more than 16,000 me­
chanics maintained and repaired

494
more than 4.5 million vending
machines. Vending machine re­
pairmen work mainly for opera­
tors who place machines in se­
lected locations and provide nec­
essary services, such as cleaning,
stocking, and repairing. Some re­
pairmen also are employed by
beverage companies which have
coin operated machines on loca­
tion. Although vending machine
operators are located throughout
the country, most mechanics are
employed in the major industrial
and commercial centers where
large numbers of vending ma­
chines are located.
Vending machine manufactur­
ers employ some highly-skilled
mechanics to explain technical
innovations and ways to repair
new machines to vending ma­
chine repairmen. Such instruc­
tion takes place either in manu­
facturers’ service divisions in ma­
jor metropolitan areas or in op­
erator’s repair shops.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Young men usually enter this
trade as general shop helpers. If
the shop helpers show promise as
mechanics, they may become
trainees. Some young men are
hired directly as trainees.
Mechanic t r a i n e e s acquire
skills on-the-job— o b s e r v i n g ,
working with, and receiving in­
struction from experienced me­
chanics. Sometimes, trainees at­
tend manufacturer-s p o n s o r e d
training sessions, which empha­
size the repair of new and com­
plex machines. Employers usu­
ally pay the wages and expenses
of their trainees during training,
which may last from a few days
to several weeks.
Because vending machines are
increasing in complexity, some op­
erators encourage both trainees




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

and experienced mechanics to
take evening courses in subjects
related to machine operation and
repair— for example, basic elec­
tricity. At least part of the tuition
and book expenses for these
courses is paid for by the em­
ployers.
The duration of on-the-job
training varies with the individ­
ual’s capabilities and the extent
of his prior education. Although
iy 2 to 2 years may be required
for a trainee to become skilled
in his work, within 6 to 9 months
he usually can handle simple re­
pair jobs and may be sent out
alone on trouble calls. Mechanics
are
generally
“ in
training”
troughout their working lives,
since they must constantly in­
crease their working knowledge
to handle new and improved
vending equipment.
Many beginners in this trade
are high school graduates, al­
though employers generally do
not require a high school diploma
for employment. High school or
vocational school courses in elec­
tricity and machine repair help
beginners to qualify for entry
jobs. These courses also may help
beginners to skip the lowest rung
of the job ladder— general shop
helper.
Employers require prospective
repairmen to demonstrate me­
chanical ability, either through
their work experience or by scor­
ing well on mechanical aptitude
tests. The ability to deal tactfully
with people is important to em­
ployers who are considering ap­
plicants. A commercial driver’s
license and a good driving record
are essential for most vending
machine repair jobs.
Skilled mechanics may be pro­
moted to senior mechanic or, in
large companies, to shop fore­
man or supervisor. Advancement
to service manager, who sched­
ules repair work, is possible for a
few mechanics having adminis­

trative ability. A few mechanics
having initiative and adequate
financial backing become inde­
pendent operators.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of vending ma­
chine mechanics is expected to
increase moderately throughout
the 1970’s. In addition to new
jobs created by growth, a few
hundred job openings will result
each year from the replacement
of repairmen who retire, die, or
transfer to other fields of work.
Some of the factors that stimu­
lated past growth and increased
the demand for the services of
qualified mechanics are the in­
troduction of new and improved
machines that dispense a grow­
ing variety of merchandise; con­
venient, round-the-clock service;
and the rising costs of selling
low-priced, s t a n d a r d
items
through conventional procedures.
Improvements in currency-chang­
ing devices also have stimulated
the growth of the industry by
making possible a greater variety
of merchandise.
Other factors that will con­
tinue to contribute to the indus­
try’s growth include an expand­
ing population; rising levels of
personal income; movement of in­
dustrial plants, schools, hospitals,
department stores, and other es­
tablishments to the suburbs
where restaurants are often incon venietly located; and the ris­
ing popularity of light meals and
snacks.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Wage data for vending ma­
chine mechanics are available
from a number of union-manage­
ment contracts in effect in early
1969 covering workers employed
by operating companies in 24

495

MECHANICS AND REPAIRMEN

States and the District of Co­
lumbia. Although these contracts
show a very wide range of straighttime hourly pay rates for me­
chanics, the majority provided
for hourly rates ranging between
$3.00 and $4.00. Different hourly
rates for shop mechanics and for
field (street) mechanics were
stipulated in several contracts. In
a few, mechanics’ rates differed,
depending on the complexity of
the machines being repaired.
Most vending machine repair­
men work 8-hours, 5 days a week,
and receive premium pay for
over-time work. Since vending
machines can be operated 24
hours a day, mechanics frequently
are required to work at night and
on weekends and holidays. Some
union-management c o n t r a c t s
stipulate higher rates of pay for
nightwork and for emergency re­
pair work on weekends and holi­
days.
Many u n i o n - m a n a g e m e n t
agreements covering vending ma­
chine mechanics include health
insurance provisions for hospital,
medical, and surgical benefits, usu­
ally financed by the employer.
Some contracts provide for em­
ployer-financed retirement bene­
fits. Vacation and holiday pay
provisions are commonly included.
Paid vacations are granted accord­
ing to length of service— usually, 1
week after 1 year of service, 2
weeks after 2 years, and 3 weeks
after 10 years. The majority of
contracts provide for 7 or 8 paid
holidays annually.
Vending machine repair shops
are generally quiet, well-lighted,
and have adequate work space.
However, when working on ma­
chines on location, mechanics
may work in cramped quarters,
such as passageways, where pe­
destrian traffic is heavy. Repair
work is relatively safe, although
mechanics are subject to shop
hazards such as electrical shocks




and cuts from sharp tools and
metal objects.
Many vending machine me­
chanics employed in the larger
operating companies are members
of the International Brotherhood
of Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Ware­
housemen
and
Helpers
of
America.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Further information
about
work opportunities in this trade
can be obtained from local vend­
ing machine operators and local
offices of the State employment
service. Additional information
about employment in this field
is available from the National
Automatic Merchandising Asso­
ciation, 7 South Dearborn St.,
Chicago, 111. 60603.

WATCH REPAIRMEN
(D.O.T. 715.281)

N ature of th e W ork
The skilled craftsmen who
clean, repair, and adjust watches,
clocks, chronometers, and elec­
tromechanical and other time­
pieces are called watch repairmen
or “ watchmakers.” When a watch
is not operating properly, they
diagnose the cause of trouble, of­
ten difficult to locate in com­
plicated mechanisms. Their work
requires precise and delicate
handling of tiny parts.
To repair a watch, the crafts­
man first removes the entire
“ movement” of the watch from
the case and using a magnifying
eye glass called a loupe, examines
its working parts, such as the
hands, dial, and balance wheel
assembly.

Depending on the reason for
the malfunction, he may replace
the mainspring, hairspring, bal­
ance and other wheels, stems and
crowns, and hands or broken
jewels and adjust improperly fit­
ted wheels and other parts. The
parts are cleaned and oiled be­
fore dials, hands, case, crystal,
and watch band are reassembled.
He then tests the repaired watch
for accuracy.
The development of inter­
changeable mass-produced watch
parts has decreased the watch
repairman’s need to make parts
by hand. However, he frequently
must adjust factory-made parts
for complicated timepieces to in­
sure a “ true” fit.
Watch repairman use timing
machines; cleaning machines, in­
cluding ultrasonic cleaners; and
handtools, such as tiny pliers,
tweezers, and screwdrivers. Thq
repair of electric and electrome­
chanical watches and clocks re­
quires the use of electrical meters.
Frequently, watch repairmen
are proprietors of jewelry stores,
and may do minor jewelry repair,
and sell watches, jewelry, silver­
ware, and other items. They also
may hire and supervise sales­
clerks, other watch repairmen,
jewelers, and engravers; arrange
window displays; purchase goods
to be sold; and handle other
managerial duties.

Places of Em ploym ent
About 20,000 watch repairmen
were employed in 1968, about
half of whom were self-employed
Most self-employed watch repair­
men owned small retail jewelry
stores that perform repair work on
the premises. Others operated
their own trade shops and special­
ized in repairing watches for jew­
elry stores. Most of those who
were not self-employed worked in
retail jewelry stores, and the re-

496

mainder worked in trade shops,
wholesale establishments, and
plants that manufacture watches,
clocks, or other precision timing
instruments.
A substantial number of in­
dividuals who received training
as watch repairmen used their
skill in jobs such as instrument
maker, repairman, or assembler;
laboratory technician; micromin­
iaturization specialist in research,
development, and engineering
laboratories and in Federal,
State, and local government
agencies. A few watch repairmen
were instructors in vocational
schools.
The Nation’s 20,000 retail jew­
elry stores are scattered through­
out the country. The heaviest
concentration of these stores is
located in large commercial cen­
ters such as New York City, Chi­
cago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia,
and San Francisco.




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Many young people prepare for
this trade through courses given
in private watch repair schools,
public vocational high schools, or
post-high school training. Others
are trained through formal ap­
prenticeship or other on-the-job
training programs.
There generally are no specific
educational requirements for en­
trance into any of the approxi­
mately 40 watch repair schools,
although most students are high
school graduates. The length of
time required to complete the
course— u s u a 11 y 18 months—
is determined by its content,
the ability of the individual
student, and whether attendance
is full or part time. In most
watch repair schools, a consider­
able amount of time is spent tak­
ing apart and reassembling vari­

ous kinds of watch movements,
truing hairsprings, removing and
replacing balance staffs, fitting
friction jewels, and learning how
to use a watchmaker’s lathe and
watch cleaning machines. Some
schools offer courses in the repair
of unusual types of timepieces,
such as chronographs, calendars,
and timers.
Most schools require students
to furnish their own handtools.
Training in instrument repair
work in the armed services can
be helpful for those who wish to
become watch repairmen.
Students or watch repairmen
interested in employment outside
of jewelry stores or trade shops
may require training in related
subjects such as basic electronics,
instrument repair, or micromin­
iaturization technology which is
provided on-the-job in many
industries.
Important qualifications for
success in this field are mechani­
cal aptitude, finger dexterity, a
sensitive touch, good vision (with
or without glasses), and patience.
For those interested in owning
or working in retail stores, sales­
manship and knowledge of busi­
ness practices, accounting, and
public relations are required.
A few States— Florida, Iowa,
Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana,
Minnesota, North C a r o l i n a ,
North Dakota, Oregon, Michi­
gan,
and
Wisconsin— require
watch repairmen to obtain a li­
cense. T o obtain a license, they
must pass an examination design­
ed to test their skill with tools
and their knowledge of watch
construction and repair.
Watch r e p a i r m e n in all
States, however, can demonstrate
their degree of competence by
passing one of two certification
examinations given by the Ameri­
can Watchmakers Institute. Suc­
cessful examinees receive the title
of either Certified Master Watch­
maker or Certified Watchmaker.

MECHANICS AND REPAIRMEN

The Certified Master Watchmak­
ers examination tests those who
have truly mastered the craft
while the Certified Watchmakers
examination is for those who are
proficient in the craft but not to
the degree of a Certified Master
Watchmaker. Annual voluntary
up-grading examinations covering
some new phase of watchmaking
also are offered to those watch
repairmen who desire to prove
their ability to keep up with the
times. Those who pass the up­
grading examination receive a
plaque of recognition.
Beginners with sufficient funds
— about $2,500 to $3,500 is
needed to purchase a watch-tim­
ing machine and other tools and
equipment— may open their own
watch repair shops. The usual
practice, however, is to work for
an experienced watch repairman
before starting one’s own busi­
ness. Some owners of watch re­
pair shops sell various items of
jewelry, and may eventually es­
tablish retail jewelry stores.
These stores require a more sub­
stantial financial investment.

Em ploym ent Outlook

Employment of watch repair­
men is expected to show little or
no change through the 1970’s.
However, hundreds of job open­
ings will arise annually from the
need to replace experienced
workers who retire, die, or trans­
fer to other fields of work.
The supply of qualified watch
repairmen who can do all kinds
of repair work quickly and ac­
curately was inadequate in 1968.
The number of workers being
trained may continue to be in­
sufficient to meet anticipated
employment needs. Some new job
openings for watch repairmen will




497
occur in retail stores and trade
shops in small cities where busi­
ness is expanding, and in newly
established shopping centers in
the suburbs of large cities. In ad­
dition, there will be a continuing
demand for well-trained workers
to use their watch repair skills in
the production of miniaturized
devices, especially in industries
making scientific instruments
and electronic equipment.
Several factors are expected to
contribute to the demand for
watch repairmen. The number of
watches in use will rise as popu­
lation and family incomes in­
crease. 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 of small watches and
the increasing use of more com­
plicated t i m e p i e c e s— chrono­
graphs, electronic watches, calen­
dar watches, and self-winding
watches— also will help to main­
tain a large volume of repair
work. Increased demand for min­
iaturized consumer goods, such
as transistor radios, television
sets, and hearing aids, and the
trend in the missile, aircraft, in­
strument, and computer indus­
tries toward smaller and lighter
weight components and assem­
blies, are expected to increase
further the demand for individ­
uals having watch repair training
to work in establishments manu­
facturing these kinds of equip­
ment. On the other hand, the
factors that will tend to increase
the demand for watch repairmen
will be offset by other factors
that will operate to decrease it.
Sales of inexpensive watches that
cost no more to replace than to
repair probably will continue to
increase, and competition from
persons who are employed in
other fields, but who repair
watches in their spare time, is
expected to continue.

Earnings and W orking Conditions

Earnings of watch repairmen
in entry jobs generally ranged
from about $90 to $125 a week in
1968 and depended on individual
ability and place of employment.
Experienced watch r e p a i r m e n
employed in retail stores, trade
shops, and watch manufacturing
establishments
received
from
$120 to $200 for a 40-hour week;
supervisors or managers of large
retail repair departments earned
up to $225 a week. In addition,
watch repairmen in retail stores
sometimes receive commissions
based on sales of watches and
other items in the store. Repair­
men in large retail and manufac­
turing establishments often par­
ticipate in life and health insur­
ance programs and savings and
investment plans. Watch repair­
men who are in business for
themselves usually earn consid­
erably more than those working
for a salary. Earnings of the selfemployed depend on the amount
of repair work done and, in the
case of watch repairmen who
own retail jewelry stores, the
volume of sales and working
hours.
Watch repairmen frequently
work longer than the standard
40-hour week. Those who are
self-employed or located in small
communities usually work a 48hour week or longer. The work
involves little physical exertion
and generally is performed in
comfortable, well-lighted sur­
roundings. This light, sedentary
work frequently is recommended
to certain handicapped workers.
Some watch repairmen are
members of the International
Jewelry Workers Union or the
America Watch Workers Union
(Ind.).

498
Sources of A dditional Inform ation

Information
on t r a i n i n g
courses, as well as on watch re­
pairing as a career, may be ob­
tained from:




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK
American Watchmakers Institute,
P.O. Box 11011, Cincinnati, Ohio
45211.

Retail Jewelers of America, Inc.,
1025 Vermont Ave. NW., Wash­
ington, D.C. 20005.

Information on watch repair
job opportunities in retail stores
can be obtained from:

Further
information
about
work opportunities or training in
this trade may be available from
local offices of the State employ­
ment service.

P R IN T IN G (G R A P H IC A R T S )
O C C U P A T IO N S

Printing is an art, a leading in­
dustry, and one of our chief means
of communication. In 1968, it pro­
vided employment for more than
1 million workers in a wide va­
riety of occupations. Although
these occupations are found prin­
cipally in the printing, publishing,
and allied industries, they also are
found in government agencies and
in private firms that do their own
printing, such as banks, insur­
ance companies, and manufac­
turers of paper products and
metal containers. About onethird of all printing employees
work in printing craft occupa­
tions. These craft occupations are
described in detail later in this
chapter. Other occupations in the
printing industries include print­
ing estimator, printing technician,
mailer, computer programer, and
computer typist, as well as the
usual administrative, clerical,
maintenance, and sales occupa­
tions found in all industries.

N ature and Location of the
industry
The printing process is basical­
ly a means of transferring ink im­
pressions of words, numerals, sym­
bols, and photographs or other
illustrations to paper, metal, or
other materials. The most com­
monly used methods of printing
are letterpress, lithography, grav­
ure, flexography, and screen
printing. Each method has special
advantages and requires some
special skills.
Included in the printing, pub­
lishing, and allied industries are
the printing and publishing of
newspapers, magazines, books,
and advertising matter; the pro­
duction of business forms; the
production of greeting cards and




gift wrappings; commercial or job
printing; bookbinding; and the
provision of typesetting, photoe n g r a v i n g , platemaking, and
other printing services, primarily
for printing establishments.
In 1968, the largest division in
terms of employment was news­
paper printing and publishing,
with over 363,000 employees in
approximately 8,000 establish­
ments. Most daily and many
weekly newspapers throughout
the Nation do their own printing.
Although some major newspapers
employ several hundred workers,
many smaller dailies and weeklies
have fewer than 20 employees.
Commercial or job printing es­
tablishments, the second largest
division, employed over 340,700
workers in about 17,000 estab­
lishments. Establishments in this
division produce a great variety
of materials such as advertising
matter,
letterheads,
business
cards, calendars, catalogs, labels,
maps, and pamphlets. They also
print limited-run newspapers,
books, and magazines. More than
half of all workers in commercial
shops are in establishments hav­
ing fewer than 100 workers. A
few large plants, each employing
a thousand workers or more, ac­
count for about 8 percent of all
commercial printing employees.
Printing j o b s a r e f o u n d
throughout the country. Almost
every town has at least one print­
ing shop of some kind— frequent­
ly, a small newspaper plant which
also may do other printing. How­
ever, more than half of the Na­
tion’s printing employees are in
five States— New York, Illinois,
California, Pennsylvania, and
Ohio. Within these States, most
printing activities are in or near
manufacturing, commercial, or fi­
nancial areas such as New York,

Chicago, Los Angeles, Phila­
delphia, San Francisco-Oakland,
Cincinnati, and Cleveland. Other
leading centers of printing em­
ployment are Boston, Detroit,
Minneapolis-St. Paul, Washing­
ton, D.C., St. Louis, and Balti­
more. Employment in book and
magazine printing is highly con­
centrated in these areas. A much
larger proportion of employment
in newspaper plants, however, is
found outside these centers be­
cause of the great number of
small local newspapers.

P rinting M ethods
All methods of printing have
certain common characteristics.
A surface of metal, stone, wood,
linoleum, rubber, or plastic is pre­
pared so that part of it can be
covered with ink. The ink is then
transferred to a sheet of paper
or other material which is pressed
against the prepared surface.
In relief printing, the printing
surface stands up from the rest of
the surrounding printing plate
area. Ink is rolled over the raised
surface and then paper is pressed
against it. The best known and
most widely used example of this
method is letterpress printing.
Other examples of relief printing
are flexography, in which a flex­
ible rubber plate and rapid dry­
ing fluid inks are used; linoleum
and wood block printing; and re­
lief engraving on metal or plastic.
Flexography is widely used for
printing on plastic films and foil
bags, milk containers, gummed
tape, and bread and candy wrap­
pers. In lithography (offset print­
ing), the printing plate surface is
smooth, with both image and
nonimage areas on the same level.
Lithography is based on the prin­
ciple that grease and water do
not mix. The image areas of the
plate are coated with a substance
to which the greasy printing ink
will adhere. On the press, the
plate is moistened with water be499

500

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

©

Simplified V ie w O f The Flow O f Printing W ork
A n d Printing M ethods
copy
LETTERPRESS

photo­
graphy

LITHOGRAPHIC

GRAVURE

customer

fore each inking so that only the
image areas take up the greasy
ink from the inking roller. The
inked image is transferred from
the plate to a rubber blanket and
then offset to the surface to be
printed. The lithographic method
can be used to produce practically
all items printed by any other
method. It is especially satisfac­
tory for printing on rough-tex­
tured surfaces because of the flex­
ibility of the rubber blanket.
In gravure printing, the image
to be reproduced is etched into the
surface of the printing plate. The
whole surface is covered with ink
and then wiped off, leaving ink
only in the sunken or etched
areas. When paper or other mate­
rial is firmly pressed against the
surface, the ink is lifted out and
appears on the paper. Copper and
steel plate engraving also uses
this technique.
Screen printing is a method in
which inks or other materials
such as paint, varnish, and liquid
plastic are forced by the action of
a flexible blade through a stencil
mounted on a finely woven screen,
generally plastic or stainless steel.
The shape of the stencil openings
determines the design to be




printed. This process may be ap­
plied to a wide variety of sur­
faces such as conventional paper,
cardboard, wood, glass, metal,
plastic, and textiles. Screen print­
ing is used on irregular surfaces
and cylindrical surfaces as well as
on flat surfaces.
Regardless of the method used,
several basic steps are involved
in the production of printed mat­
ter. (See chart 29.) They include
layout— planning the composition
and content of each page; type­
setting and composition— produc­
ing and assembling the text type,
headings, illustrations, and other
materials into final page form;
platemaking— preparing printing
plates from the original composi­
tion for use on the printing
presses; printing— transferring an
image to a printing surface; and
finishing— binding and mailing
operations.

P rin tin g Occupations
Production of printed materials
involves workers in a wide variety
of occupations. Printing crafts­
men who in 1968 numbered over
412,300 represent a large segment

of these employees. Printing
craftsmen usually specialize in
one area of printing operations;
for example, type composition,
photography, platemaking, presswork, or binding. Their training,
moreover, is confined largely to
only one of the basic printing
methods— letterpress,
lithogra­
phy, or gravure.
The estimated 191,000 skilled
composing room workers em­
ployed in 1968 were the largest
group of printing craftsmen. This
group includes hand compositors,
typesetting machine operators,
makeup men, tape-perforating
machine operators (teletypeset­
ters), and proofreaders. Other
large groups of skilled workers are
printing pressmen and their as­
sistants; lithographic craftsmen,
including cameramen, artists,
strippers, platemakers, and litho­
graphic pressmen. Bookbinders,
photoengravers,
electro typers,
and stereotypers are other impor­
tant printing craftsmen. Individ­
ual occupations are described in
detail later in this chapter.
Maintenance machinists, who
repair and adjust typesetting ma­
chines, printing presses, or bind­
ery equipment, are another group
of skilled workers employed in
large plants.
In the skilled occupations,
practically all the workers are
men. However, many of the less
skilled jobs, especially in the bind­
eries, are held by women. Print­
ing establishments also employ a
great many persons as executives,
salesmen, accountants, engineers,
stenographers, clerks, and labor­
ers. Newspapers and other pub­
lishers employ a considerable
number of reporters and editors.
These occupations are discussed
elsewhere in the Handbook. (See
index for page numbers.)
Because of the increasingly
complex and highly mechanized
printing equipment in use today,
there is a growing need for tech-

501

PRINTING (GRAPHIC ARTS) OCCUPATIONS

nically trained people in all areas
of printing management and pro­
duction. For example, an increas­
ing number of production tech­
nicians are being employed
throughout the printing indus­
try. These men are responsible
for seeing that the standards es­
tablished for each printing job are
met. T o do this, they must be
thoroughly familiar with the
printing processes, and the many
technical instruments used in the
plant to judge and control the
quality of the printing.
The mailroom, chiefly in news­
paper and periodical plants, is an­
other area of employment closely
related to printing production.
Here workers address, bundle,
and tie the printed matter for
distribution. Modern mailroom
processes are mechanized to a
considerable extent. Mailers op­
erate addressing, stamping, stack­
ing, bundling, and tying ma­
chines.

T rain in g and O ther Q ualifications
Apprenticeship is a common
method of entry into the printing
crafts. In some instances, it is the
only means by which one may be
trained to become a journeyman
(skilled worker) in a unionized
shop. Formal apprenticeship also
is required for journeyman stat­
us in many larger establishments
not covered by union contracts.
At the beginning of 1969, about
11,000 registered apprentices
were in training in the skilled
printing crafts. A registered ap­
prentice is an employee who, un­
der an expressed or an implied
agreement, receives instruction in
an apprenticeable occupation for
a stipulated term and is employed
in an apprenticeship program reg­
istered with a State apprentice­
ship agency or the U.S. Depart­
ment of Labor’s Bureau of Ap­
prenticeship and Training. In ad­




dition, several thousand appren­
tices were in nonregistered pro­
grams. A substantial number of
persons also were learning a
printing trade while working as
helpers, particularly in small
printing shops or lettershops, or
through a combination of work
experience and schooling.
Printing trades apprenticeships
usually last from 4 to 6 years, de­
pending on the occupation and
the shop or area practices. The
apprenticeship program covers all
phases of the particular trade and
generally includes classroom or
correspondence study in related
technical subjects in addition to
training on the job. As new print­
ing methods have been developed
and introduced, they generally
have been incorporated into the
duties of the traditional printing
crafts and included in the appren­
tice training programs. Appren­
ticeship applicants generally are
required to be between 18 and 30
years of age and must pass a phy­
sical examination. However, in
many printing crafts, there is no
maximum age limit for entry into
an apprenticeship.
In selecting applicants for
printing craft jobs, most employ­
ers require a high school educa­
tion or its equivalent. A thorough
knowledge of spelling, punctua­
tion, the fundamentals of gram­
mar, and basic mathematics is
essential in many of the printing
trades. A knowledge of the basic
principles of chemistry, electron­
ics, and physics is becoming in­
creasingly important because of
the growing use of photomechani­
cal and electronic processes in
printing. An artistic sense is also
an asset since the finished prod­
uct should be pleasing in balance
and design. Most printing crafts
require persons with good eye­
sight, about average physical
strength, and a high degree of
manual dexterity. Mental alert­
ness, speed combined with ac­

curacy, neatness, patience, and
the ability to work with others are
also necessary. The ability to dis­
tinguish colors is important in
areas of printing where color is
used. Many employers require ap­
plicants to take one or more apti­
tude tests developed for printing
industry occupations by the U.S.
Department of Labor. These tests
are given in the local offices of
State employment services. Ap­
prentices often are chosen from
among the young men already
employed in various unskilled
jobs in printing establishments
who demonstrate the mechanical
aptitudes essential for the print­
ing crafts.
About
4,000 schools— high
schools, vocational schools, tech­
nical institutes, and colleges—
offer courses in printing. These
courses may help a young person
to be selected for apprenticeships
or other job openings in the print­
ing and publishing industries.

Em ploym ent O utlook
There will be many opportuni­
ties to enter the skilled printing
trades through the 1970’s. These
opportunities will occur primarily
as a result of the need to replace
experienced workers who retire,
die, or transfer to other fields of
work. Many of these opportuni­
ties, however, will be in new types
of jobs because of technological
changes in production methods.
Retirements and deaths alone
may provide about 8,000 openings
each year during the decade.
Slight employment increases in
some printing trades also are ex­
pected to provide a small number
of additional job openings an­
nually.
A continued rise in the volume
of printed material is expected
because of population growth, the
increasingly high level of educa­
tion, the expansion of American

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

502
industry, and the trend toward
greater use of printed materials
for information, packaging, ad­
vertising, and various industrial
and commercial purposes. How­
ever, employment in skilled print­
ing trades occupations is not ex­
pected to increase significantly
because of the continuing intro­
duction of laborsaving techno­
logical changes in printing meth­
ods. These changes, primarily in
the areas of type composition,
platemaking, and bindery opera­
tions, include the increasing use
of electronic devices such as com­
puters, electronic etching and
color-separating equipment, and
electronic controls for highly
mechanized bindery equipment.
Employment growth will vary
among the printing trades. For
example, employment of composi­
tors, the largest group of printing
craftsmen, is expected to decrease
slightly despite the continued in­
crease in the volume of printing
because of laborsaving technolog­
ical changes in typesetting and
composition. Employment of lith­
ographic craftsmen, however, is
expected to increase because of
the growing use of lithography
(offset printing).
Earnings and W orking Conditions
Earnings of production workers
in the printing and publishing
industry, including the unskilled
and semiskilled workers and
printing craftsmen, are among
the highest in manufacturing in­
dustries. In 1968, production
workers in this industry averaged
$133.28 a week, or $3.48 an hour,
compared with $122.51 a week, or
$3.01 an hour, for production
workers in all manufacturing.
Earnings of individual printing
craftsmen vary from one occupa­
tion to another. Generally, the
wage rates in large cities are high­
er than in small communities.




Average union hourly rate
July 1, 16981
Book
Newspaper
and job

Bookbinders ..................
Compositors:
Hand ..........................
Machine operators ....
Electrotypers ................
Photoengravers ............
Pressmen (journeymen)
Pressmen (cylinder) ..
Pressmen (platen) ....
Stereotypers ..................
Mailers ..........................

$4.45
$4.40
4.43

4.44
4.45
4.99

4.71
4.32
4.25
3.98

4.34
3.83
4.64
3.61

1
Average day rates.

Wage rates also differ by type of
printing establishments. The fol­
lowing tabulation shows the av­
erage union minimum hourly
wage rates for daywork for se­
lected printing occupations in 69
large cities on July 1, 1968. These
rates are the minimum basic rates
for the individual occupational
classifications. They do not in­
clude overtime, other special pay­
ments, or bonuses.
A standard workweek of 3 7 ^
hours was specified in labor-man­
agement contracts covering about
2 out of 5 of the organized print­
ing trades workers, although
standard workweeks of 36^4
hours and 35 hours were also in
effect. A 40-hour workweek was
standard in some establishments
in the industry. Time and a half
generally is paid for overtime.
Work on Sundays and holidays is
paid for at time and one-half or
doubletime rates in most com­
mercial printing establishments.
In newspapers plants, however,
the craftsmen’s workweek often
includes Sundays. Time and onehalf or double time is paid for
these days only when they are
not part of the employee’s regular
shift. Night-shift workers gener­
ally receive pay differentials
above the standard day rates.
The starting wage rates of ap­
prentices are generally from 40
to 50 percent of the basic rate for
journeymen in the shop. Wages
are increased periodically, usually
every 6 months, until in the final

year or half year of training, the
apprentice receives from 80 to 95
percent of the journeyman rate.
Apprentices who have prior civil­
ian or military experience some­
times can obtain credit which will
start them above the beginning
apprentice pay rate, and also re­
duce the length of time required
to become a journeyman if they
successfully pass examinations
provided for situations of this na­
ture. In exceptional cases, these
provisions also apply to appren­
tices with technical school train­
ing. In some of the trades, appren­
tices may be upgraded when they
show exceptional progress.
Paid vacations generally are
provided for printing craftsmen.
The most common provision in
labor-management agreements is
2 weeks’ vacation with pay after
1 year’s employment. Many
agreements, however, provide for
3 weeks’ vacation with pay after
1 year or more of employment,
and an increasing number pro­
vide for 4 weeks with pay after
20 or 25 years. Other major bene­
fits, such as paid holidays, re­
tirement pay, life and disability
insurance, hospitalization, and
severance pay, are also common.
In addition, a number of printing
trade unions have for many years
operated their own programs pro­
viding their members with one
type of benefit or more, such as
life insurance, retirement, sick­
ness, or disability payments.
The injury-frequency rate in

PRINTING (GRAPHIC ARTS) OCCUPATIONS

the printing industry is somewhat
lower than the average for all
manufacturing industries.
A large proportion of the print­
ing trades workers are members
of unions affiliated with the AFLCIO. The largest printing trades
unions are the International
Printing Pressmen and Assist­
ants’ Union of North America;
the International Typographical
Union; and the Lithographers
and Photoengravers Union. Other
printing trades unions include the
International Brotherhood of
Bookbinders; the International
Stereotypers’ and Electrotypers’
Union of North America; and the
International M a i l e r s Union
(Ind.). The majority of unionized
lithographic workers are in
plants under contract with the
Lithographers and Photoengrav­
ers International Union, which in­
cludes both printing craftsmen
and other lithographic workers.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Information on opportunities
for apprenticeship or other types
of printing employment in a par­
ticular locality may be obtained
from various sources. Applicants
may apply directly to the printing
establishments in their areas. The
names and locations of local
printers usually can be obtained
from the classified section of the
local telephone directory. In ad­
dition, the local unions and em­
ployer associations in the print­
ing industry often can provide in­
formation regarding apprentice­
ship openings. In recent years,
there has been an increasing use
of local offices of the State em­
ployment services as information
exchanges for apprenticeship op­
enings. Some of these offices pro­
vide services such as screening
applicants and giving aptitude
tests.

503
General information on the
printing industry may be ob­
tained by writing to the following
organizations:
American Newspaper Publishers
Association, 750 Third Ave.,
New York, N.Y. 10017.
Education Council of The Graphic
Arts Industry, Inc., 4615 Forbes
Ave., Pittsburgh, Pa. 15213.
Graphic Arts Technical Founda­
tion, 4615 Forbes Ave., Pitts­
burgh, Pa. 15213.
Gravure Technical Institute, 60
East 42d St., New York, N.Y.
10020.

International Typographical
Union, P.O. Box 157, Colorado
Springs, Colorado 80901.
Printing Industries of America,
Inc., 5223 River Road, Wash­
ington, D.C. 20016.

(See sections on individual
printing occupations for names
of labor organizations and trade
associations which can provide
more information on specific
printing trades.)

COMPOSING ROOM
OCCUPATIONS
(D.O.T. 650.582, 654.782, and 973.381)

Compositors make up page from lines set by machine.




The printing process begins in
a composing room where manu­
script copy is set in type, proofed,
and checked for errors. Machine
and handset type, and other ma­
terials, such as photoengravings,
are assembled there and prepared
for the pressroom.
In 1968, about half of all print­
ing craftsmen— about 191,000—
were employed in composing room
occupations. These occupations
offer many opportunities for per­
sons interested in learning a
skilled craft. Compositors usually
have year-round employment and

504

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

very good earnings. Composing
room workers include compositors
who set type by hand; typesetting
machine operators who operate
semiautomatic typesetting ma­
chines; tape-perforating machine
operators who perforate tapes
used to operate some typesetting
machines; bankmen who assem­
ble type in shallow trays called
“ galleys’ ’ and make trial proofs
of this type; proofreaders who
check the galley proofs with the
original copy for errors; make-up
men who assemble type and pho­
toengravings in page forms; and
stonehands, who arrange the
pages in proper sequence.
Compositors are employed in
newspaper plants, commercial
printing shops, in book and peri­
odical printing plants, and in
typographic composition firms
that set type for printing estab­
lishments, advertising agencies,
and advertising departments of
large business firms. One-third of
all compositors work in newspa­
per plants. A large number are
employed in establishments that
specialize in setting type for book
and magazine publishers.
Skilled composing room work­
ers are employed in almost every
community throughout the coun­
try, but they are concentrated in
large metropolitan areas such as
New York, Chicago, Los Angeles,
Philadelphia, Boston, San Fran­
cisco, Detroit, Minneapolis-St.
Paul, Cleveland, and Washington,
D.C.

be impractical to set the type by
machine.
In setting type by hand, the
compositor, reading from the
manuscript copy, first sets each
line of type in a “ composing
stick” (a device which holds type
in place) letter by letter and line
by line. When this stick is full,
he slides the completed lines onto
a shallow metal tray called a
“ galley.”

Typesetting machine operators
are craftsmen who operate semi­
automatic machines which set
type much more rapidly than the
hand compositors. The type size
used in machine set composition
ordinarily is much smaller than
that set by hand.

Linotype (or Intertype) ma­
chine operators (D.O.T. 650.582)
reading from the copy clipped to
the machine’s copy board, select
letters and other characters by
operating a keyboard which has
90 keys. As they press the keys,
the letters, in forms of metal
molds called matrices, are as­
sembled into lines of words. A
spaceband key provides the neces-

Hand compositors ( typeset­
ters) (D.O.T. 973.381) make up




Monotype keyboard operators
(D.O.T. 650.582) operate key­
boards quite similar to those on
a typewriter, but which include
about four times as many keys.
The keyboard machine produces
a perforated paper tape which
later is fed into the casting ma­
chine. The keyboard operator
must be able to handle compli­
cated copy, such as statistical
tables.

Monotype c a s t e r operators

N atu re of the W ork

the oldest composing room occu­
pation. Today the majority of
type that is set by hand is for
work requiring very fine compo­
sition, usually larger size type
being used for advertising copy,
and for small jobs where it would

sary spacing between words. As
they complete each line, the op­
erators touch a lever and the ma­
chine automatically casts the line
of type into a solid metal strip
called a “ slug.” The slugs are then
deposited in a galley and are later
assembled into the type forms
from which either the printing
impressions or the plates are
made. Nearly all newspaper
plants, large commercial shops,
a n d typographic composition
firms use these machines and op­
erators to set type. In the smaller
plants, the typesetting machine
operator maintains and repairs as
well as operates the typesetting
machine. In the larger plants,
maintenance machinists are em­
ployed to make all but minor ad­
justments to the machines.
Other typesetting machine op­
erators work on Monotype ma­
chines. One machine is called the
Monotype keyboard and the
other is the Monotype caster.

Linotype operator sets copy.

(D.O.T. 654.782) operate the
casting machines which automat­
ically cast and assemble the type,
guided by the perforations in the
paper tape prepared by the key­
board machine. As the rolls of
perforated tape are fed into the
machines, the proper matrices
for casting letters are selected
automatically by means of the
perforations in the tape. Molten
metal is forced into the matrix to
form the individual character.
The Monotype casting machine,
as the name suggests, casts type

PRINTING (GRAPHIC ARTS) OCCUPATIONS

505
film on which the type has been
photographed. He also may as­
semble and arrange developed
film into pages. This process,
called “ stripping,” corresponds to
page makeup in the hot metal
type process. The operator also
makes minor repairs on the pho­
totypesetting m a c h i n e . Since
much of this equipment has elec­
tronic controls, the operator needs
a basic working knowledge of the
principles of electronics.

Monotype keyboard operator prepares perforated tape.

one letter or character at a time.
This permits some corrections to
be made by hand without the
need to reset an entire line. The
principal duties of caster opera­
tors are to insert the tape, adjust
and tend the machine while it is
operating, and do necessary main­
tenance and repair work. Only
one caster operator is employed
to every two or three keyboard
operators. Typographic composi­
tion firms are the largest employ­
ers of both Monotype keyboard
and caster operators.

Phototypesetting machine op­
erators (D.O.T. 650.582) set type
on machines which may be simi­
lar in appearance or method of
operation, or both, to those which
cast type in hot metal. In photo­
typesetting, however, a photo­
graphic process replaces the func­
tion of the hot metal, and the
final product is a film or photo­
graphic paper print of the type
rather than a metal slug. In one
type of machine, as the operator




presses the keys, the individual
matrices or mats, which contain
small film negatives, are assem­
bled and photographed on film,
character by character, to form
a line of type. In other phototype­
setting machines, a perforated
paper tape or a magnetic sound
tape is fed into a phototypeset­
ting machine which “ reads” the
tapes and photographs the indi­
vidual characters indicated on the
tape.
Some typesetters operate pho­
tolettering machines which pro­
duce lines or individual characters
in large-size type such as that
used for newspaper headlines and
for advertisements. As in photo­
typesetting, a photographic proc­
ess is involved, and the final prod­
uct is on film or paper.
In addition to machine opera­
tion, the phototypesetter must be
familiar with the fundamentals
of photography, including dark­
room procedures, because fre­
quently he has to develop the

Typesetting machine operators
also set type by the “ cold type”
method. The type is set on paper,
using machines that are similar
to typewriters. These machines
automatically space letters and
lines. “ Cold type” composition
may be set directly on a paper
or even a metal sheet from which
the plate is to be made, or the
cold type images may be cut from
paper and pasted on layout
sheets. The process of assembling
and pasting this type on layout
sheets is called paste makeup,
and is somewhat similar to hand
composition. The worker who
assembles and pastes up all the
materials for a page is called a
paste-makeup man. Cold type
composition frequently is used
by newspapers for display adver­
tising, and by small newspapers
to set regular text copy.
Typesetters frequently operate
tape-perforating machines called
teletypesetters. These are ma­
chines with keyboards similar to
those of typewriters. The ma­
chines are fitted with reels of
tape that are perforated as the
keys are struck. The perforated
tapes are inserted in line casting
machines, which set the type as
directed by the perforations.
After the tape has been punched,
it may be sent by teletype to
other cities where it is automat­
ically reperforated and used to
control the operation of linecast­
ing machines.

506
T rain in g and O ther Q ualifications
Most compositors acquire their
skills
through apprenticeship
training. In union shops, appren­
tices often are selected from
among the helpers. Some com­
positors acquire their skills while
working as helpers for several
years (particularly in small shops
and in the smaller communities)
or through a combination of
trade school and helper experi­
ence.
Tape-perforating machine op­
erators must be expert typists.
They generally acquire their typ­
ing skill in commercial courses in
high school or in business school.
It is not necesary for these oper­
ators to be trained as journeymen
compositors to perform their
work efficiently; however, they
must be familiar with printing
terms and measurements. The
training period for tape-perforat­
ing machine operators is gener­
ally about a year. Journeymen
compositors sometimes transfer to
this occupation.
Generally, apprenticeship cov­
ers a 6-year period of progressive­
ly advanced training, supple­
mented by classroom instruction
or correspondence courses. How­
ever, this period may be short­
ened by as much as 2 to 2 ^
years for apprentices who have
had
previous
experience
or
schooling or who show the ability
to learn the trade more rapidly.
The time and emphasis spent up­
on any particular phase of train­
ing varies from plant to plant,
depending upon the type of print­
ing establishment.
A typical apprenticeship pro­
gram for compositors includes in­
struction in elementary hand
composition, page makeup, lock­
up, lineup, and proofreading. Af­
ter basic training as a hand com­
positor, the apprentice receives
intensive training in one special­
ized field or more, such as the




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

operation of typesetting ma­
chines, including phototypeset­
ting and teletypesetting ma­
chines, as well as specialized
work in hand composition and
photocomposition.
Applicants for apprenticeship
generally must be high school
graduates and in good physical
condition. They sometimes are
given aptitude tests. Important
qualifications include training in
English, especially spelling, and
in mathematics. Printing and
typing courses in vocational or
high schools are good prepara­
tion for apprenticeship appli­
cants, and a general interest in
electronics and photography is
becoming increasingly useful. Ar­
tistic ability is an asset for a
compositor in layout work.
Apprentices are paid accord­
ing to a predetermined wage
scale, which increases as the ap­
prenticeship period advances. At
the beginning of 1969, there were
about 3,900 registered appren­
tices in training for skilled com­
posing room jobs.

ting machines. These machines,
which set lines of type in metal or
on film, are activated by an elec­
tronic device into which perfo­
rated tapes are fed. The perfora­
tions indicate characters, words,
sentences, length of lines, spacing,
and hyphenation. The recent in­
troduction of computers, pro­
gramed to perforate the codes for
spacing, length of line, and hyph­
enation simplifies the work of the
tape-perforating machine opera­
tor, and increases the speed at
which type can be set.
Technological changes also will
affect significantly the education­
al and skill requirements for com­
posing room workers. The greater
use of phototypesetting, for ex­
ample, requires compositors to
have some photographic skills.
Since much of the new typeset­
ting equipment is operated by
electronic systems, a knowledge
of the application of electronic
principles to the operation of this
equipment is becoming increas­
ingly i m p o r t a n t f o r t h e
compositor.

Em ploym ent O utlook

Earnings and W orking Conditions

A few thousand job openings
for composing room workers are
expected annually through the
1970’s because of the need to re­
place experienced workers who
retire or die. Retirement and
deaths alone should provide ap­
proximately 4,000 job openings
annually.
In spite of the anticipated ex­
pansion in the volume of printing
in the United States during the
1970’s, employment of composi­
tors is expected to decline slowly
because of technological changes
in typesetting equipment that will
make it possible to set type faster
using fewer operators. For ex­
ample, over the past decade there
has been an increasing use of
automatically operated typeset­

As is true for most printing
crafts, wages of skilled composing
room workers are relatively high
compared with skilled workers
generally. However, there is con­
siderable variation in wage rates
from place to place and from firm
to firm. The average union mini­
mum hourly wage rate for hand
compositors on the day shift in
69 large cities was $4.40 in news­
paper plants and $4.45 in book
and job shops on July 1, 1968.
Union minimum wage rates for
compositors in book and job shops
ranged from $2.93 an hour in
Tampa, Fla., to $4.93 in San
Francisco, Calif. In newspaper
establishments, the union mini­
mum hourly wage rates for dayshift compositors ranged from

PRINTING (GRAPHIC ARTS) OCCUPATIONS

$3.73 an hour in Lubbock, Tex.,
to $5.49 in Chicago.
Working conditions for com­
positors vary from plant to plant.
Some heat and noise are made by
hot metal typesetting machines.
In general, the newer plants are
well lighted and clean, and many
are air conditioned. Composing
room jobs require about average
physical strength. Hand composi­
tors are required to stand for long
periods of time and to do some
lifting. Young men with some
types of physical handicaps, such
as deafness, have been able to
enter the trade and do the work
satisfactorily. Many compositors
work at night on the second or
third shift for which they gen­
erally receive additional pay.
A substantial proportion of
compositors are members of the
International
Typographical
Union.

507

in type. The printing surfaces on
these plates stand out in relief
above the nonprinting spaces, as
do the letters and the accompany­
ing type. Similarly, gravure pho­
toengravers, a specialized type of
photoengraver, m a k e gravure
plates in which the image is
etched below the surface for use
in reproducing pictures and type.
In making a photoengraving
plate for the letterpress process,
the entire job may be done either
by one man or by a number of
skilled workers, each specializing
in a particular operation. Special­
ists include cameramen, printers,
etchers, finishers, routers, block­
ers, and proofers. In the large
shops, the work is divided almost
always among a number of these
specialists.

A cameraman starts the process
of making a photoengraving plate
by photographing the material to
be reproduced. Plates made from
line drawings are called line plates
and those from photographs are
called halftone plates. After the
cameraman develops the negative,
the printer prints the image on a
metal plate by coating the plate
with a solution sensitive to light
and then exposing it and the nega­
tive to arc lights. The image areas
are protected by chemical means
so that when the plate is placed
in an acid bath by the etcher, only
the nonimage areas are etched
away, leaving the image areas to
stand out in relief.
A number of other photoen­
graving operations may be per­
formed, depending on the quality

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
International Typographical
Union, P.O. Box 157, Colorado
Springs, Colo. 80901.
International Typographic Com­
position Association, Inc., 2233
Wisconsin Ave. NW., Washing­
ton, D.C. 20007.
Printing Industries of America,
Inc., 5223 River Road, Wash­
ington, D.C. 20016.

See page 503 for additional
sources of information.

PHOTOENGRAVERS
(D.O.T. 971.381 and .382)

N ature of the W ork

Photoengravers make metal
printing plates of illustrations and
other copy that cannot be set up




Cameraman photographs material to be reproduced.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

508
of the printing required. Photoen­
gravings for very high quality
books or periodicals, for example,
require more careful finishing
than those for newspapers. The
finisher carefully inspects and
touches up the plate with handtools; the router cuts away metal
from the nonprinting part of the
plate to prevent it from touching
the inking rollers during printing;
the blocker mounts the engraving
on a suitable base to make it
reach the right height; and the
proof er prints a sample copy on a
proof press.
The operations involved in
gravure photoengraving are much
like those in letterpress photoen­
graving, except that the image
areas rather than the background
are etched away.

Places of Em ploym ent

About 18,000 journeymen pho­
toengravers were employed in
1968. The great majority of pho­
toengravers (about 12,000) are
employed in commercial service
shops where the main business is
making photoengravings for use
by others. Newspaper and roto­
gravure shops employ several
thousand photoengravers. In ad­
dition, book and periodical shops
and the U.S. Government Print­
ing Office also employ photoen­
gravers. Many of these craftsmen
have their own shops. Photoen­
gravers’ jobs are highly concen­
trated in the largest printing
centers, particularly New York,
Chicago, Philadelphia, and Los
Angeles.
Gravure photoengravers work
mainly in independent gravure
plants. Most of them work for the
small number of big firms which
handle a large proportion of all
gravure work. A few large news­
paper and commercial plants also




have departments where this work
is done. Gravure plants are con­
centrated in a few States, par­
ticularly New York, Pennsyl­
vania, Illinois, and Kentucky.

Train in g and O ther Q ualifications
The most common way to be­
come a photoengraver is through
apprenticeship training. At the
beginning of 1969, there were
over 560 registered apprentices in
training for skilled photoengrav­
ing occupations. The apprentice­
ship program generally covers a
5 year period and includes at least
800 hours of related classroom in­
struction. Besides the care and
use of tools, the apprentice is
taught to cut and square nega­
tives, make combination plates,
inspect negatives for defects, mix
chemicals, sensitize metal, and op­
erate machines used in the photo­
engraving process.
A p p r e n tic e s h ip applicants
must be at least 18 years of age
and generally must have a high
school education or its equivalent,
preferably with courses in chem­
istry and physics and training in
art. Credit for previous experi­
ence acquired in photoengraving
work may shorten the required
apprenticeship time. Many em­
ployers require a physical exam­
ination for prospective photoen­
gravers; the condition of the ap­
plicant’s eyes is particularly im­
portant because a photoengrav­
er’s duties involve constant close
work and color discrimination.

the total number of these crafts­
men is anticipated over the next
decade despite the growing use
of photographs and other illus­
trations, and the increasing use
of color. The introduction of more
rapid etching techniques, the ap­
plication of electronics to engra­
ving and to color separation, and
the increasing use of offset print­
ing, which requires no photoen­
gravings, will limit the number
of photoengravers needed.

Earnings and W orking Conditions

Photoengravers are among the
highest paid printing craftsmen.
The average union minimum
hourly wage rate for photoen­
gravers in 69 large cities on July
1, 1968, was $4.99 in book and
job shops and $4.71 for the day
shift in newspaper plants. Union
average minimum hourly rates
ranged from $3.51 an hour in New
Orleans, La., to $5.51 an hour in
New York.
The great majority of photoen­
gravers are union members. Near­
ly all unionized photoengravers
are represented by the Lithogra­
phers and Photoengravers Inter­
national Union.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

American Photoplatemakers Asso­
ciation, 166 West Van Buren St.,
Chicago, 1 1 60604.
1.
Lithographers and Photoengravers
International Union, 233 West
49th St., New York, N.Y. 10019.

Em ploym ent Outlook
A few hundred job openings
are expected each year through
the 1970’s because of the need to
replace photoengravers who retire
or die. However, no increase in

Printing Industries of America,
Inc., 5223 River Road, Wash­
ington, D.C. 20016.

See page 503 for additional
sources of information.

PRINTING (GRAPHIC ARTS) OCCUPATIONS

ELECTROTYPERS AND
STEREOTYPERS
(D.O.T. 974.381 and 975.782)

N ature of the W ork

Electrotypers (D.O.T. 974.381)
and stereotypers (D.O.T. 975.782) make duplicate press plates
of metal, rubber, and plastic for
letterpress printing. These plates
are made from the metal type
forms prepared in the composing
room. Electrotypes are used main­
ly in book and magazine work.
Stereotypes, which are less dur­
able, are used chiefly in news­
paper work. Electrotyping and
stereotyping are necessary be­
cause most volume printing re­
quires the use of duplicate print­
ing plates. When a large edition
of a book, magazine, or newspaper
is printed, several plates must be
used to replace those which be­
come too worn to make clear im­
pressions. Also, by means of dup­
licate plates, printers can use sev­




eral presses at the same time,
and thus finish a big run quickly.
This is especially important in
publishing daily newspapers. Fur­
thermore, the rotary presses used
in many big plants require curved
plates which can be made by
either electrotyping or stereo­
typing processes from the flat
type forms.
Several steps are required to
produce a duplicate, curved metal
plate ready for use in the press­
room. In electrotyping, the first
step is making a wax or plastic
mold of the type form, coating it
with special chemical solutions,
and then suspending it in an
electrolytic solution containing
metal. This leaves a metallic shell
on the coated mold; this shell
then is stripped from the mold,
backed with metal or plastic, and
carefully finished.
The stereotyping process is
much simpler, quicker, and less
expensive than electrotyping, but
it does not yield as durable or as
fine a plate. Stereotypers make
molds or mats of paper-mache (a

509
strong material composed of
paper pulp) instead of wax or
plastic. This involves placing the
mat on the type form and cover­
ing it with a cork blanket and
sheet of fiberboard. The covered
form is run under heavy powerdriven steel rollers to impress the
type and photoengravings on the
mat. Then the mat is placed in a
stereotype casting machine which
casts a composition lead plate on
the mold. In many of the larger
plants, stereotype plates are cast
in automatic machines.
In many of the larger plants,
electrotypers and stereotypers
perform only one phase of the
work, such as casting, molding,
finishing, or blocking. However,
journeymen must know how to
handle all the tasks involved in
their respective trades.
Many electrotypers work in
large plants that print books and
periodicals. The majority of ster­
eotypers work in newspaper
plants, but some are employed in
large commercial printing plants.
Electrotypers and stereotypers
also are employed in independent
service shops which do this work
for printing firms.

Train in g and O ther Q ualifications

Stereotyper makes mat.

Nearly all electro typers and
stereotypers learn their trades
through apprenticeship. Electro­
typing and stereotyping are sep­
arate crafts, and there is little
transferability between the two.
The apprenticeship program of
each trade covers all phases of
the work and almost always in­
cludes classes in related techni­
cal subjects as well as training on
the job. Apprenticeship training
for electrotypers and stereotypers
usually covers a 5- or 6-year pe­
riod of reasonably continuous
employment.
Apprenticeship applicants must
be at least 18 years of age and,

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

510

ample, the increasing use of auto­
matic plate casting eliminates
many steps in platemaking, and
plastic and rubber plates are
being made increasingly outside
electrotyping and stereotyping
shops. Furthermore, the increas­
ing use of offset printing reduces
the need for electrotypers and
stereo typers, since this type of
plate is not required in offset
printing.

Printing Industries of America,
Inc., 5223 River Road, Wash­
ington, D.C. 20016.

See page 503 for additional
sources of information.

PRINTING PRESSMEN
AND ASSISTANTS
(D.O.T. 651.782, .885, and .886)

Earnings and W orking Conditions
N atu re of the W ork

Stereotypers place mat into casting
machine.

in most instances, must have a
high school education or its equiv­
alent. If possible, this education
should include mechanical train­
ing and courses in chemistry. Phy­
sical examinations and aptitude
tests often are given to prospec­
tive apprentices. The emphasis
placed upon different phases of
training varies from plant to
plant, however, depending upon
the type of printing establish­
ment.

Em ploym ent O utlook
There will be some opportuni­
ties for new workers to become
electrotypers and stereotypers
through the 1970’s because of re­
tirements, deaths, or transfers of
workers to other occupations.
However, the total number of
electrotypers and stereotypers is
expected to continue to decline
moderately.
This decline will occur in spite
of the anticipated increase in the
total volume of printing because
of technological changes. For ex­




On July 1, 1968, the union
minimum hourly wage rates in
69 large cities averaged $4.45 an
hour for electrotypers, $4.64 an
hour for stereotypers in book and
job shops, and $4.25 an hour for
stereotypers on day shift in news­
paper plants. Union minimum
hourly wage rates for electrotyp­
ers in book and job plants ranged
from $3.60 an hour in Baltimore,
Md., to $5.05 an hour in New
York. In newspaper plants, rates
for day-shift stereotypers ranged
from $3.57 an hour in Springfield,
Mass., to $5.99 an hour in
Chicago.
Much of the work requires little
physical effort since the prepa­
ration of duplicate printing plates
is highly mechanized. However,
there is some lifting of relatively
heavy, hot press plates.
Nearly all electro typers and
stereotypers are members of the
International Stereotypers’ and
Electrotypers’ Union of North
America.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
International Stereotypers’ and
Electrotypers’ Union of North
America, 10 South La Salle St.,
Chicago, 11 . 60603.
1
International Association of Elec­
trotypers and Stereotypers, Inc.,
758 Leader Building, Cleveland,
Ohio 44114.

The actual printing operation
is performed in the pressroom.
Printing pressmen “ makeready”
(prepare) type forms and press
plates for final printing and tend
the presses while they are in
operation.
The object of makeready,
which is one of the most delicate
and difficult parts of the press­
man’s work, is to insure printing
impressions that are distinct and
uniform. This is accomplished by
means such as placing pieces of
paper exactly the right thickness
underneath low areas of the press
plates to level them, and by at­
taching pieces of tissue paper to
the surface of the cylinder or flat
platen which makes the impres­
sion. Pressmen also have to make
many other adjustments— for ex­
ample, those needed to control
margins and the flow of ink to the
inking roller. In some shops, they
are responsible not only for tend­
ing the presses but also for oiling
and cleaning them and making
some minor repairs. On the larger
presses, pressmen have assistants
and helpers.
Pressmen’s work may differ
greatly from one shop to another,
mainly because of differences in
the kinds and sizes of presses
used. Small commercial shops
generally have small and relative­
ly simple presses that often are

PRINTING (GRAPHIC ARTS) OCCUPATIONS

fed paper by hand. At the other
extreme are the enormous web­
rotary presses used by the larger
newspaper, magazine, and book
printing plants. These giant
presses are fed paper in big rolls
called “ webs,” up to 50 inches
or more in width. They print the
paper on both sides by means of
a series of cylinders; cut, assem­
ble, and fold the pages; and, fi­
nally, count the finished newspa­
per sections which emerge from
the press ready for mailing. These
steps are accomplished automat­
ically by means of many different
mechanisms, each of which calls
for constant attention while a run
is being made. Presses of this kind
are operated by crews of journey­
men and less skilled workers
under the direction of a pressman-

511

trade while working as helpers
or press assistants or through a
combination of work experience
in the pressroom and vocational
or technical school training.
The length of apprenticeship
and the content of training de­
pend largely on the kind of press
used in the plant. The appren­
ticeship period in commercial
shops is 2 years for press assist­
ants and 4 years for pressmen.
In newspaper establishments the
apprenticeship period is 5 years.
The apprenticeship period for
pressmen operating web presses
is generally 5 years. On-the-job
training includes the care of press­
room equipment, makeready, run­
ning the job, press tending and
maintenance and working with
various types of inks and papers.

In addition to on-the-job instruc­
tion, the apprenticeship involves
related classroom or correspond­
ence schoolwork. At the beginning
of 1969, about 3,500 registered
apprentices were in training.
Individual companies generally
choose apprentices from among
press assistants and others al­
ready employed in the plant.
Young men often may work for
2 or 3 years in the pressroom be­
fore they are selected to begin 2to 4-year training periods leading
to journeyman status. A high
school education or its equivalent
generally is required. Because of
technical developments in the
printing industry, a year of chem­
istry and a year of physics should
be included. Mechanical aptitude
is important in making press ad-

in-charge.
Although the basic duties of

lithographic

( offset)

pressmen

are similar to those of letterpress
and gravure pressmen, a number
of differences exist, principally
because of the specialized char­
acter of lithographic presses. (See
p. 512 for further details.)
The duties of press assistants
range from feeding sheets of paper
into hand-fed presses to helping
pressmen makeready and operate
large and complicated rotary
presses. Workers whose main re­
sponsibility is feeding often are
called press feeders. The ratio of
assistants to pressmen differs
from one establishment to an­
other, depending on the size of
the plant, the type of press used,
and other factors. Many shops
are too small to have pressroom
assistants.

T rain in g and O ther Q ualifications
As in other printing crafts, the
most common way of learning the
pressman’s trade is through ap­
prenticeship. Some workers have
been able to learn the skills of the




Pressman adjusts stereotype plate on newspaper press.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

512
justments and repairs. An ability
to visualize color is essential for
work on color presses, which are
being used increasingly. Physical
strength and endurance are neces­
sary for work on some kinds of
presses, where the pressmen have
to lift heavy type forms and press
plates and stand for long periods.

E m ploym ent Outlook
Employment of pressmen is ex­
pected to increase moderately
throughout the 1970’s. The total
amount of printing and the use of
color are expected to increase, re­
quiring larger and more complex
presses. However, continued im­
provements in the speed and effi­
ciency of printing presses will
limit the need for additional
pressmen.
The need to replace workers
who retire, die, or transfer to
other fields of work also will re­
sult in job opportunities for new
workers. Retirements and deaths
alone may result in about 1,600
job openings each year.

pressroom to wear ear protectors.
There are also the usual occupa­
tional hazards associated with
machinery. Pressmen often have
to lift heavy type forms and print­
ing press plates. At times, they
work under pressure to meet
deadlines, especially in the print­
ing of newspapers and magazines.
Many pressmen work night shifts
for which the rate of pay is higher
than the basic day rate.
A majority of pressroom work­
ers are covered by union agree­
ments. Practically all of the or­
ganized letterpress and gravure
pressmen are members of the In­
ternational Printing Pressmen
and Assistants’ Union of North
America.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
International Printing Pressmen
and Assistants’ Union of North
America, Pressman’s Home,
Tenn. 37850.
Printing Industries of America,
Inc., 5223 River Road, Wash­
ington, D.C. 20016.

See page 503 for additional
sources of information.
Earnings and W orking Conditions
The earnings of pressmen de­
pend upon the kind of press op­
erated, the type of printing plant,
and the geographical area of em­
ployment. A survey of union mini­
mum hourly wage rates for day­
work in 69 large cities shows that
the average minimum hourly rate
in effect on July 1,1968, for news­
paper pressmen-in-charge was
$4.62, for newspaper pressmen
(journeymen), $4.32; for book
and job cylinder pressmen, $4.34;
for book and job platen pressmen,
$3.83, and for book and job press
assistants and feeders, $3.69.
Pressrooms are unavoidably
noisy— one State, California, now
requires newspaper pressmen
working in certain areas of the




LITHOGRAPHIC
OCCUPATIONS

N ature of the W ork
Lithography (offset printing)
is one of the most rapidly grow­
ing methods of printing. Prac­
tically all items printed by other
processes also are produced by
lithography— including
books,
calendars, maps, posters, labels,
office forms, catalogs, folding car­
tons, and newspapers. Lithog­
raphy has special advantages
when the copy to be reproduced
includes photographs, drawings,

or paintings, since the rubber
blanket which transfers the image
from the plate to the surface to
be printed permits greater flexi­
bility in the type of paper that
can be used.
Several operations are involved
in lithography, and each is per­
formed by a specialized group of
workers. The main groups of lith­
ographic workers are cameramen,
artists and letterers, strippers,
platemakers, and pressmen.
The camerman (D.O.T. 972.382) starts the process of making
a lithographic plate by photo­
graphing the copy. He generally is
classified as a line camerman
(black and white), halftone cam­
eraman (black and white), or
color separation photographer.
After the negatives have been
made, they frequently need re­
touching to lighten or darken cer­
tain parts. Thus, it is often neces­
sary for a lithographic artist
(D.O.T. 972.281) to make cor­
rections by sharpening or reshap­
ing images on the negatives.
Highly skilled workers perform
this work by hand, using chemi­
cals, dyes, and special tools.
To qualify as journeymen,
these artists must be adept in one
or more of the various retouch­
ing methods. Like cameramen,
they are assigned to only one
phase of the work and may cus­
tomarily be known, for example,
as dot etchers, retouchers, or let­
terers, depending on their par­
ticular job.
The stripper (D.O.T. 971.381)
makes layouts on paper, glass, or
film. He arranges and pastes film
or prints of type, pictures, and
other art work on the layout
sheets called flats or “ stripups,”
from which photographic impres­
sions are made for the lithograph­
ic press plates. The job of the
stripper in the lithographic proc­
ess corresponds to that of the
makeup man in the letterpress
process.

PRINTING (GRAPHIC ARTS) OCCUPATIONS

513
it to the paper, adjusts water and
ink rollers for correct operation,
mixes inks, and operates the
presses. Basically, the duties of
these workers are similar to those
of letterpress and gravure press­
men. Some differences exist, how­
ever, because of the chemical
means used to separate image and
nonimage areas on lithographic
presses. In large plants, press
feeders and helpers are employed;
their duties are similar to those
of assistants and helpers to letterpress and gravure pressmen. (See
p. 511.)

T rain in g and O ther Q ualifications

Camerman adjusts lens before making printing plate.

In lithography, employees in
the platemaking department ex­
pose press plates to photographic
films which are made by the cam­
eramen and corrected by artists.
The platemaker (D.O.T. 972.781)
may cover the surface of the metal
plate with a coating of photosen­
sitive chemicals, or the metal
plate may come to him with the
photosensitive layer applied. The
platemaker exposes the sensitized
plate through the negative or pos­
itive to strong arc lights; this is
commonly done in a vacuum
printing frame. When a large




number of the same images are
to be exposed on a single plate,
however, the operation is done
in a photocomposing machine.
The plate then is developed and
chemically treated to bring out
the image.
The
lithographic pressman
(D.O.T. 651.782) makes ready
and tends the lithographic (off­
set) printing presses. He installs
the plate on the press, adjusts
the pressure for proper printing,
cares for and adjusts the rubber
blanket which takes the impres­
sion from the plate and transfers

A 4- or 5-year apprenticeship
covering the basic lithographic
process usually is required to be­
come a well-rounded lithographic
craftsman. Training emphasis is
on the specific occupation in
which journeyman status is being
sought, although generally, an at­
tempt is made to make the ap­
prentice familiar with all litho­
graphic operations. At the begin­
ning of 1969, there were about
1,900 registered apprentices in
training for skilled lithographic
occupations.
Usually, apprenticeship appli­
cants must be in good physical
condition, high school graduates,
and at least 18 years of age. Ap­
titude tests are sometimes given
to prospective apprentices. Voca­
tional school training and train­
ing in photography, mathematics,
chemistry, physics, and art are
helpful in learning these crafts.

Em ploym ent O utlook
A slow rise in the n u m b e r
of lithographic workers is ex­
pected through the 1970’s. In ad­
dition, the need to replace work­
ers who retire, die, or transfer to
other fields of work will provide

514
some job openings. Employment
growth and replacement needs
together are expected to provide
about 1,800 job opportunities for
new workers each year on the av­
erage through the 1970’s.
Offset printing has expanded
considerably in recent years, par­
ticularly in the commercial print­
ing field, and a large number of
letterpress concerns have estab­
lished offset departments. Offset
presses are used increasingly in
small and medium size newspaper
establishments. In 1968, an esti­
mated 73,000 journeymen litho­
graphic workers were employed.
Offset
printing
employment
should show continued growth
because of the greater use of pho­
tographs, drawings, and illustra­
tions in printed matter, and be­
cause of the more widespread use
of color in many printed products.
However, new technological de­
velopments, particularly in the
camera, platemaking, and press
departments, are expected to slow
the increase in lithographic em­
ployment.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

Francisco area. In many plants,
top grade cameramen earn as
much as the highly skilled artists,
and cameramen who do multi­
color work are paid more than
those who do only black and
white work. Minimum hourly
rates of platemakers ranged from
$2.81 an hour in San Antonio to
$5.14 an hour in Los Angeles and
San Diego. The wide range of
rates for lithographic pressmen—
from $2.53 an hour for small multilith press operators in Little
Rock to $7.12 an hour for first
pressmen on a large eight-plate
roll-fed offset press in Chicago—
is due largely to the many dif­
ferent types and sizes of presses
operated.
A substantial proportion of all
lithographic workers are members
of the Lithographers and Photo­
engravers International Union. A
considerable number of offset
pressmen and other offset workers
are members of the International
Printing Pressmen and Assist­
ants’ Union of North America.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Earnings and W orking Conditions
Union minimum hourly wage
rates for lithographic occupations
vary within each occupation, de­
pending upon the degree of skill
required, the type and size of
equipment, and the part of the
country in which the worker is
employed. For example, accord­
ing to information on union mini­
mum hourly wage rates in 69
large cities as of July 1, 1968,
wage rates for dot etchers or proc­
ess artists and letterers ranged
from $3.32 an hour in Little Rock,
Ark., to $5.55 an hour in Boston,
Mass. Rates for cameramen,
which generally are below those
for skilled artists, ranged from
$3.13 an hour in San Antonio,
Tex., to $5.35 an hour in the San




Lithographers and Photoengravers
International Union, 233 West
49th St., New York, N.Y. 10019.
International Printing Pressmen
and Assistants’ Union of North
America, Pressmen’s Home,
Tenn. 37850.
Graphic Arts Technical Founda­
tion, 4615 Forbes Ave., Pitts­
burgh, Pa. 15213.
National Association of PhotoLithographers, 230 West 41st
St., New York, N.Y. 10036.
Printing Industries of America,
Inc., 5223 River Road, Wash­
ington, D.C. 20016.

See page 503 for additional
sources of information.

BOOKBINDERS AND
RELATED WORKERS
(D.O.T. 977.781)

N atu re of the W ork
Many printed items, such as
books, magazines, pamphlets,
business forms, and calendars,
must be folded, sewed, stapled,
or bound after they leave the
printing shops. Much of this work
is done by skilled bookbinders
(D.O.T. 977.781) who numbered
about 30,000 in 1968. Many book­
binders are employed in shops
whose chief business is bookbind­
ing. However, a considerable num­
ber are employed in the bindery
departments of large book, peri­
odical, and commercial printing
plants and large libraries.
There are several different
kinds of binderies. Edition and
pamphlet binderies bind books,
magazines, and pamphlets print­
ed in large quantities. Trade or
job binderies do bindery work on
contract for printers, publishers,
or other customers. Blankbook
and looseleaf binderies bind vari­
ous types of blank books such as
ledgers and bookkeeping and ac­
counting volumes. They also pro­
duce looseleaf binders and bind
books in looseleaf form.
Edition b i n d i n g — making
books in quantity from big, flat
printed sheets of paper— is by
far the most complicated. The
first step in the process is to fold
the printed sheets into one unit
or more, known as “ signatures,”
so that the pages will be in the
right order. The next steps are
to insert any illustrations that
have been printed separately, to
gather and assemble the signa­
tures in proper order, and to sew
them together. The resulting
book bodies are shaped with pow­
er presses and trimming ma-

PRINTING (GRAPHIC ARTS) OCCUPATIONS

chines, and fabric strips are glued
to the backs for reinforcement.
Covers are glued or pasted onto
the book bodies, after which the
books undergo a variety of finish­
ing operations and, frequently,
are wrapped in paper jackets. Ma­
chines are used extensively
throughout the process.
Skilled bookbinders seldom
perform all the different edition
bindery tasks, although many
journeymen have had training in
all of them. In large shops, skilled
bookbinders may be assigned to
one or a few operations, most
often to the operation of compli­
cated machines.
In many binderies, especially
large ones, much of the work is
done by workers trained in only
one operation or in a small num­
ber of relatively simple, related
tasks. Most of these workers,
often classified as bindery work­
ers or bindery hands, are women
(hence the common designation,
bindery women). Their work
closely resembles assembly line
factory work.

T rain in g and O ther Q ualifications

A 4- or 5-year apprenticeship
which includes on-the-job train­
ing as well as related classroom
instruction generally is required
to qualify as a skilled bookbinder.
Apprenticeship programs may
vary considerably among the vari­
ous types of bookbinding shops.
When large quantities of books
are bound on a mass production
(edition) basis, emphasis is on
the most modem machine meth­
ods. In fine hand binding, em­
phasis is mainly on hand meth­
ods, including artistic designing
and decorating of leather covers.
For many years, hand bookbind­
ing has been declining in impor­
tance.




515
for bindery hands, the majority
of whom are women, because of
the considerable turnover among
this group. However, some de­
crease in the total number of
bookbinders and bindery hands
is expected, despite the antici­
pated growth in the amount of
bound printed materials, because
of the increasing mechanization
of bindery operations.

Earnings and W orking Conditions

Bookbinder marbles book edges.

Apprenticeship applicants usu­
ally must have a high school
education and be at least 18
years of age. Mechanical aptitude
is helpful to the person entering
this trade. In the course of the
apprenticeship, trainees learn,
among other things, to assemble
signatures, renovate old, worn
bindings, and use various binding
machines such as punches, fold­
ers, perforators, stitchers, and
power cutters.
For the less skilled bindery oc­
cupations, the training period
may last from several months to
2 years. In union shops, appren­
ticeship programs for women
bindery workers generally last 2
years. These formal programs in­
clude classroom instruction as
well as on-the-job training.

Wage rates for skilled book­
binders tend to be below the av­
erage of other printing crafts. A
survey of union minimum hourly
wage rates in 69 large cities, as
of July 1, 1968, showed that the
minimum hourly wage rate for
bookbinders in book and job es­
tablishments averaged $4.20 an
hour, and rates ranged from $4.87
in the San Francisco area to $3.20
in Shreveport, La. The wage rates
for bindery women are consider­
ably lower and are among the
lowest for printing industry
workers. They ranged from $1.93
an hour in Little Rock to $3.30
in the San Francisco area.
The majority of bindery work­
ers are union members. Most
skilled bookbinders are repre­
sented by the International
Brotherhood of Bookbinders.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

Em ploym ent Outlook
A few hundred job openings for
skilled bookbinders are expected
each year during the next decade
because of the need to replace ex­
perienced workers who retire or
die. Many openings are expected

International
Brotherhood
of
Bookbinders, 1612 K St. NW.,
Washington, D.C. 20016.
Printing Industries of America,
Inc., 5223 River Road, Wash­
ington, D.C. 20016.

See page 503 for additional
sources of information.




S O M E O T H E R M A N U A L O C C U P A T IO N S

ASSEMBLERS
N atu re of the W ork
Many of the products and
parts made in factories must be
assembled during various steps in
the manufacturing process, as
well as in the final assembly of
the product. For example, tele­
vision sets, automobiles, and re­
frigerators are typical of the
products which undergo many as­
sembly operations. The workers

who put together parts or fin­
ished products, nearly 911 of
whom are semiskilled workers, are
known as assemblers.
Some assemblers, known as
floor assemblers, put together
large, heavy machinery or equip­
ment on shop floors, often fasten­
ing 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 products or parts which

move automatically past their
work stations on conveyors.
These workers must complete
their assembly job within the
time period it takes the part or
product to pass their work
station.
The job duties of assemblers
depend upon the product being
manufactured, and the manufac­
turing process being used. In air­
craft and missile production,
these workers may assemble and
install parts into subassemblies.
In the automobile 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.
The kinds of tools assemblers
use depend upon the work 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.
Skilled assemblers work on the
more complex parts of subassem­
blies with little or no supervision
and are responsible for the final
assembly of complex jobs. These
skilled workers must know how
to read blueprints and other en­
gineering specifications and use a
variety of tools and precision
measuring instruments. In rela­
tively new fields such as elec­
tronics, instrumentation, and
missiles, subassembly work may
require a high degree of skill.
Places of Em ploym ent

Assembler wires safety component in missile.




Assemblers work in plants that
mass-produce products such as
automobiles, aircraft, television
sets, c a m e r a s , refrigerators,
watches, and electrical motors.
In early 1968, approximately
785,000 assemblers were em­
ployed in manufacturing plants;
the great majority were in elec­
trical machinery and other metal­
working plants. The majority of
517

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

518
assemblers were employed in
California, New York, Michigan,
Illinois, Ohio, Indiana, and Penn­
sylvania.
About half of all assemblers
were women, who worked pri­
marily as bench assemblers. The
largest proportion of women as­
semblers worked in the electrical
machinery, equipment, and sup­
ply industry. Large numbers of
women assemblers also were em­
ployed in other industries— fabri­
cated metals; machinery, except
electrical; transportation equip­
ment; and instruments and re­
lated products.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Inexperienced workers who are
hired to do assembly work are
usually trained on the job in a
few days or weeks. The new
worker may have his job duties
explained to him by his super­
visor and then be placed under
the supervision of an 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 does.
Employers generally want ap­
plicants for assembly jobs to be
physically fit, dependable, and
have some aptitude for mechani­
cal work.
High school graduates or
workers who have taken voca­
tional school courses, such as
blueprint reading, are preferred
by many employers although a
high school diploma is not usu­
ally required. Generally, for pro­
duction-line assembly jobs, em­
ployers look for applicants who
can do routine work at a steady
and fast pace. For other types of
assembly jobs, applicants may
have to meet special require­




ments. For example, in plants
producing electrical and elec­
tronic products, which may con­
tain many different colored
wires, applicants often are tested
for color blindness.
Many women are employed in
bench assembly jobs because
such work is relatively light and
often requires the ability to work
with small and delicate objects.
This is particularly true in the
electrical and electronic equip­
ment industry. Male workers are
usually employed as floor or line
assemblers, where the work is
physically hard. Final automobile
assembly, for example, is gener­
ally done by men.
A relatively small number of
workers who learn to perform a
variety of assembly work and
who have a knowledge of blue­
print reading and shop mathe­
matics are able to become skilled
assemblers. A few workers also
may become skilled inspectors or
foremen.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of assemblers is
expected to increase slowly
through the 1970’s, creating sev­
eral thousand job openings an­
nually. Most job openings, how­
ever, are expected to result from
the need to replace workers who
retire, die, or transfer to other
fields of work. Deaths and retire­
ments alone will account for
about 20,000 openings each year.
Most of the industries that em­
ploy assemblers, especially the
electrical machinery industry, are
expected to increase their em­
ployment during this period;
however, technological changes
are expected to limit the growth
of this occupation. For example,
the increasing use of printed elec­
trical circuits reduces the wiring
work required in assembling ra­
dio and television sets, thus af­

fecting the employment of assem­
bly workers in plants producing
these products. Further increases
in the use of automatic assembly
processes are expected to slow
the growth of assemblers.
Employment in metalworking
manufacturing
plants,
which
have many assemblers, is particu­
larly sensitive to changes in busi­
ness conditions and national de­
fense needs. Therefore, assem­
blers in those industries will be
subject to occasional layoffs.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Earnings of assemblers in
manufacturing 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 re­
flect the level of skill and respon­
sibility involved. The following
table presents average straighttime hourly earnings of assem­
blers in the nonelectrical machin­
ery industry:
Average straight-time hourly earnings of class A,
B, and C assemblers in nonelectrical machinery,
mid-1967
Area
Class A Class B Class C

United States1..... $3.08
New England .. 2.98
Middle Atlantic 3.03
Border States .. 2.97
Southeast ......... 2.45
Southwest ....... 2.65
Great Lakes .... 3.18
Middle West .... 3.27
Pacific ............ 3.10

$2.68
2.60
2.60
2.64
1.95
2.16
2.87
2.71
2.60

$2.32
2.34
2.17
2.23
1.79
1.84
2.45
2.47
2.23

1Includes data for Mountain States.

The working conditions of as­
semblers differ, depending on the
particular job performed. Assem­
blers 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 indus­
trial machinery, on the other
hand, may install and assemble

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

heavy parts and are often ex­
posed 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. Assemblers paid incen­
tive or piecework rates are en­
couraged to work more rapidly by
the prospect of higher earnings.
Many assemblers in manufac­
turing industries are members of
labor unions. These unions in­
clude the International Associa­
tion of Machinists and Areospace
Workers; the International Un­
ion of Electrical, Radio and Ma­
chine Workers; the International
Union, United Automobile, Aero­
space and Agricultural Imple­
ment Workers of America; and
the International Brotherhood of
Electrical Workers. Most labormanagement contracts in the
manufacturing plants in which
assemblers are employed provide
for fringe benefits, such as holi­
day and vacation pay, health in­
surance, life insurance, and re­
tirement pensions.

AUTOMOBILE PAINTERS
(D.O.T. 845.781)

N atu re of the W ork
Automobile painters make old
and damaged motor vehicles
“ look like new.” These skilled
workers repaint vehicles that
have lost the luster of their origi­
nal paint, and the repaired por­
tions of vehicles damaged in traf­
fic accidents. (Production paint­
ers who work for motor vehicle
manufacturers are discussed else­
where in the Handbook.)
To prepare an automobile for
painting, the painter or his helper
rough sands the vehicle to re­




move original paint. He then uses
a spray gun to apply primer coats
to the automobile surface. After
the primer dries, he sands the
surface until it is smooth enough
to be painted. For rough sanding,
he usually uses a pneumatic or
electric sander and a coarse grade
of sandpaper; final sanding may
be done by hand using a fine
grade of sand paper. Small nicks
and scratches that cannot be re­
moved by sanding are filled with
automobile-body putty. Masking
tape and paper cover areas not to
be painted.
Before painting repaired por­
tions of an automobile, the paint­
er may mix paints to match the
existing color of the car. Before
applying the paint, he adjusts the
nozzle of the spray gun according
to the kind of lacquer or enamel
being used and, if necessary, ad­
justs the air-pressure regulator
to acquire the needed amount of
pressure. He must handle the
spray gun skillfully so that the
paint is applied evenly, rapidly,
and thoroughly. To speed drying,
he may place the freshly painted
automobile under heat lamps or
in a special infrared oven. After
the paint dries, the painter or his
helper may polish the newly

519
painted surface to bring out its
luster.

Places of Em ploym ent
Almost two-thirds of an esti­
mated 30,000 automobile paint­
ers employed in 1968 worked
in repair shops that specialize in
automobile-body
repairs
and
painting, and in shops that make
general automobile repairs. Most
of the others were employed in
the service departments of auto­
mobile and truck dealers. Some
painters were employed by or­
ganizations that maintained and
repaired their own fleets of mo­
tor vehicles, such as trucking
companies and bus lines.
Although automobile painters
are employed in every section of
the country, about half of them
work in the eight States with the
largest number of motor vehicles:
California, New York, Texas,
Pennsylvania,
Ohio,
Illinois,
Michigan, and Florida.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Most automobile painters start
as helpers and acquire their skills
informally by working for sev­
eral years with experienced
painters. Usually, beginners re­
move automobile trim, clean and
sand surfaces to be painted, and
polish painted surfaces. As help­
ers gain experience, they pro­
gress to more complicated tasks
such as using spray guns to apply
primer coats and paint small
areas. Three to four years of in­
formal on-the-job training are re­
quired to become a fully quali­
fied automobile painter.
A small number of automobile
painters learn their trade through
apprenticeship.
Apprenticeship
programs for automobile paint­
ers, which generally last 3 years,

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

520
consist of on-the-job training
supplemented by related class­
room instruction.
Young men considering this
work as a career should have good
health, keen eyesight, a discern­
ing color sense, and a steady
hand. Courses in automobilebody repair offered by high
schools and vocational schools
provide helpful experience. Com­
pletion of high school generally
is an advantage though not a re­
quirement for getting a job as a
painter’s helper, because too many
employers high school gradution indicates that a young man
can “ complete a job.”
An experienced automobile
painter with supervisory ability
may advance to shop foreman.
Many experienced painters who
acquire the necessary capital
open their own shops.

E m ploym ent O utlook
Employment of automobile
painters is expected to increase
moderately through the 1970’s.
In addition to the few hundred
job openings anticipated annually
as a result of employment
growth, hundreds of job openings
are expected to result each year
because of the need to replace ex­
perienced painters who retire or
die. Opportunities also will occur
as some painters transfer to other
lines of work.
Employment of automobile
painters is expected to increase
primarily as a result of the in­
creasing number of motor vehi­
cles damaged in traffic accidents.
The accident toll is expected to
increase as the number of motor
vehicles in use grows, despite
new and improved highways,
driver training courses, added
safety features on new vehicles,
and stricter law enforcement that
may slow down the rate of in­
crease. Despite the increasingly




durable paint used on new cars,
the number of motor vehicles
that need to be repainted because
the original finish has deterior­
ated also is expected to increase
as a result of the growth in the
number of motor vehicles in use.
The employment effect of in­
creasing numbers of motor vehi­
cles and traffic accidents may
be offset slightly by improve­
ments that make automobile bod­
ies more resistant to rust, and
new developments in painting
equipment that should enable
painters to complete jobs in less
time.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
A number of union-manage­
ment agreements indicate that
most automobile painters em­
ployed by automobile dealers in
1968 earned between $3.45 and
$4.60 an hour. Those employed
in large metropolitan areas gen­
erally earned more than painters
employed in small towns.
Many painters employed by au­
tomobile dealers and independent
repair shops are paid a percentage
of the labor cost charged to the
customer. Under this method, a
painter’s earnings depend largely
on the amount of work he is as­
signed and how fast he completes
it. Earnings also may be based on
other methods of wage payment—
for example, a weekly salary plus
a commission on jobs completed,
or an hourly rate. Painters em­
ployed by trucking companies,
buslines, and other organizations
that repair their own vehicles
usually receive an hourly rate.
Most painters work 40 to 48 hours
a week.
Many employers of automobile
painters provide holiday and va­
cation pay, and addditional bene­
fits such as life, health, and ac­
cident insurance, and contribute
to retirement plans. Some shops

furnish laundered uniforms free
of charge.
Automobile painters are ex­
posed to fumes from paint and
paint-mixing ingredients. How­
ever, in most shops, the painting
is performed in special ventilated
booths that protect the painters.
Shops not having such booths
furnish masks that cover the nose
and mouth. Painters must be
agile because they often bend
and stoop while working. Only
average physical strength is
needed.
Many automobile painters be­
long to unions, including the In­
ternational Association of Ma­
chinists and Aerospace Workers;
the International Union, United
Automobile, A e r o s p a c e and
Agricultural Implement Workers
of America; the Sheet Metal
Workers’ International Associa­
tion;
and the International
Brotherhood of T e a m s t e r s ,
Chauffeurs, Warehousemen and
Helpers of America (Ind.). Most
painters who are union members
are employed by the larger auto­
mobile dealers and by trucking
companies and buslines.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
For further information re­
garding work opportunities for
automobile painters, inquiries
should be directed to local em­
ployers, such as automobile-body
repair shops and automobile
dealers; locals of the unions pre­
viously mentioned; or the local
office of the State employment
service. The State employment
service also may be a source of
information about the Manpower
Development and Training Act
of 1962, apprenticeship, and
other programs that provide
training opportunities.
General information about the
work of automobile painters may
be obtained from:

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS
Automotive Service Industry As­
sociation, 168 North Michigan
Ave., Chicago, 1 1 60601.
1.
Independent Garage Owners of
America, Inc., 624 South Michi­
gan Ave., Chicago, 1 1 60605.
1.

AUTOMOBILE TRIMMERS
AND INSTALLATION MEN
(AUTOMOBILE
UPHOLSTERERS)
(D.O.T. 780.381 and .884)

N atu re of the W ork
Automobile
trimmers,
fre­
quently assisted by installation
men, replace and repair uphols­
tery and other automobile fab­
rics. (Workers who upholster
automobiles in factories are not
included in this statement.)
Trimmers and installation men
together are called “ automobile
upholsterers.”
Automobile trimmers (D.O.T.
780.381) are skilled upholsterers
who custom make coverings for
automobile seats, floors, and door
panels; convertible tops; and
other items. To make these items,
they first determine the dimen­
sions of each piece of vinyl,
leatherette, broadcloth, or other
material to be used and mark
the material for cutting, after al­
lowing for pleats, seams, shrink­
age, and stretching. Although
trimmers often follow standard
designs to make most items, they
may follow original designs speci­
fied by customers or create origi­
nal designs. After cutting and fit­
ting, they use heavy-duty sewing
machines to stitch the pieces.
Finished pieces are stretched
and pulled to fit snugly; glued,
tacked, stapled, or fastened in
other ways; and then trimmed of
excess material. In addition to




making automobile upholstery
and convertible tops, trimmers
may make items such as truck
seat cushions and tarpaulins,
boat covers, and seats for buses
and small airplanes. Automobile
upholsterers also repair uphol­
stery that has been torn, cut,
burned, or damaged. They may
repair power-window and con­
vertible top mechanisms, and cut
and install automobile glass.
Automobile trimmers often are
assisted by installation men,
sometimes called seat-cover in­
stallers (D.O.T. 780.884), who

521
remove worn seat covers and con­
vertible tops and install new
ones.
Trimmers and installation men
use a variety of handtools includ­
ing shears, knives, screwdrivers,
special pliers, various type of
wrenches, tack hammers, mallets,
and tape measures. They also use
heavy-duty sewing machines and
power tools such as airpowered
staplers and wrenches. In some
shops, they use electric steaming
machines to shrink fabrics, and
special electronic welders to bind
synthetic materials.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

522
Places of E m ploym ent
An estimated 8,300 automobile
trimmers and installation men
were employed in 1968. Most
worked in shops that specialize
in the fabrication and replace­
ment of automobile upholstery
and convertible tops. Others
worked in automotive repair and
accessories sections of depart­
ment stores, in automobile-body
repair shops, and in automobile
dealer shops. Most automobile
upholstery specialty shops em­
ploy from 1 to 5 trimmers. In
small shops, the number of in­
stallation men generally equals
the number of trimmers. How­
ever, installation men outnumber
trimmers in many of the larger
shops, particularly those that
specialize in the installation of
factory-made seat covers and
tops.
Although automobile uphol­
sterers are employed throughout
the country, most work in the
larger cities.
Train in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Most trimmers and installation
men learn their skills on the job.
Beginners usually are hired as in­
stallation men trainees. They are
first taught to remove seats and
upholstery and install seat cov­
ers, and gradually learn to do
more difficult jobs such as in­
stalling convertible tops. After
qualifying as installation men,
they progress to making seat cov­
ers, tops, and other upholstery.
Although a capable beginner can
become a fully qualified installa­
tion man in 3 to 6 months, 3 to
4 years usually are required to
become a skilled trimmer.
A small number of automobile
trimmers begin as apprentices.
Apprenticeship programs for au­
tomobile trimmers, generally last
3 or 4 years, and consist of on-




the-job training supplemented by
related classroom instruction.
Applicants for entry jobs should
be mechanically inclined and in
good physical condition. Employ­
ers are interested in hiring those
who enjoy working creatively
with their hands. A high school
education is desirable but not es­
sential. High school and vocacational school courses in furni­
ture upholstery provide valuable
training. Courses in mathematics
are useful in laying out and plan­
ning automobile upholstery work.
Experienced trimmers who
have supervisory ability may ad­
vance to foremen in large shops.
Many automobile trim shops are
owned by trimmers who acquired
the necessary experience, skill,
and capital to establish their own
businesses.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Hundreds of job openings for
automobile trimmers and instal­
lation men are expected to be
available through the 1970’s.
Most openings will result from
the need to replace experienced
workers who retire, die, or trans­
fer to other lines of work. M od­
erate growth of the occupations
is expected to provide a small
number of job opportunities an­
nually, primarily because the op­
eration of more automobiles is
expected to increase the demand
for custom-made automobile up­
holstery and other fabric prod­
ucts. However, the demand is not
expected to grow as rapidly as
the number of automobiles, be­
cause of the use of more durable
fabrics. Other factors that may
stimulate employment growth in­
clude an increasing demand for
truck cushions and tarpaulins as
a result of the anticipated in­
crease in the number of trucks
in operation, and an increasing
demand for custom-made boat

covers and seat as a result of the
growing popularity of boating.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Most trimmers and installation
men are paid a weekly salary or
hourly wage and work from 44 to
48 hours per week. Many receive
commissions or bonuses based on
sales, in addition to their regular
pay. Some trimmers are paid on
a straight commission basis. In­
formation from a limited number
of automobile dealers indicated
that most installation men and
trimmers earned between $2.75
and $4.25 an hour in 1968. Indi­
vidual earnings often depend on
experience and geographic loca­
tion. Trimmers earn more than
installation men, and earnings
generally are higher in large met­
ropolitan areas than in small
towns.
Trimmers and installation men
receive holiday and vacation pay
and all, or part, of the cost of
life, health, and accident insur­
ance. Some employers also con­
tribute to retirement plans.
Trimmers and installation men
generally work in shops that are
clean, well-lighted, and relatively
quiet. Their work often involves
being in awkward and uncom­
fortable positions for short pe­
riods.
Automobile
upholstery
work is not hazardous, although
these workers are subject to cuts,
bruises, and other minor injuries.
A small percentage of these
workers are members of the In­
ternational B r o t h e r h o o d of
Teamsters, Chauffeurs, Ware­
housemen and Helpers of Amer­
ica (Ind.).
Sources of A dditional Inform ation
For further information re­
garding work opportunities for
automobile trimmers and instal­
lation men, inquiries should be

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

directed to local automobile trim
shops or the local office of the
State employment service. The
State employment service also
may be a source of information
about the Manpower Develop­
ment and Training Act of 1962,
apprenticeship, and other pro­
grams that provide training
opportunities.
General information about the
work of automobile trimmers and
installation men may be obtained
from:
National Association of Auto Trim
Shops, 129 Broadway, Lynbrook, L.I., N.Y. 11563.

BLACKSMITHS
(D.O.T. 356.381 and 610.381)

N ature of the W ork
Blacksmiths are skilled crafts­
men who make and repair various
metal articles such as tools, fix­
tures, machine and structural
parts, and other agricultural and
industrial implements. They also
sharpen hand and machine tools
such as chisels, drills, bits, picks,
and similar tools. Blacksmiths
join pieces of glowing hot metal
by hammering them together, a
process called forge or fire weld­
ing. They use several basic tools
and pieces of metalworking
equipment to fabricate or repair
metal articles, including a special
furnace called a forge to heat the
metal, an anvil on which the
heated metal is placed to ham­
mer it into shape, presses and
power hammers to shape the
metal, and a variety of handtools
such as hammers, chisels, and
tongs.
After a metal article or tool has
been fabricated, repaired, or
sharpened, a blacksmith may heattreat (temper or anneal) the forg­




523

ed metal for certain desired prop­
erties. To harden the metal, he
first heats the metal to a high tem­
perature in the forge, and then
he cools it quickly in an oil or
water bath. T o temper the metal
(to make it more durable and
less brittle), he also heats it, but
to a lower temperature than is
needed for hardening. The metal
is kept at this lower tempera­
ture for a specified time and then
removed to cool gradually at air
temperature.
An ancient skill practiced by
many blacksmiths is that of shoe­
ing horses; blacksmiths who spe­
cialize in this activity often are
called farriers. To shoe a horse, a
blacksmith removes the old shoe
from the horse’s hoof and exam­
ines the hoof for bruises and de­
fects. He then cleans, trims, and
shapes the hoof to receive the new
shoe. The blacksmith then heats a
metal bar cut to hoof measure­
ments, hammers this bar into the
shape of the shoe, punches nail
holes, and positions and nails the
shoe on the horse’s hoof. Finally,
he uses a rasp to trim the hoof
flush to the new shoe. Today,
most blacksmiths or horseshoers
use ready-made horse shoes, but
they may be required to make
minor adjustments to achieve a
proper fit.
Job duties of industrial black­
smiths are similar to those of
many forge shop workers who op­
erate heavy machinery to shape
and form articles from heated
metal. For a detailed discussion
of jobs and job opportunities in
forge shops, see the section on
Forge Shop Occupations.
Places of Em ploym ent
In 1968, about two-thirds of the
15,000 blacksmiths employed in
the United States worked as in­
dustrial blacksmiths, primarily
performing maintenance and re­
pair duties. Nearly half of the

industrial blacksmiths worked in
manufacturing industries, espe­
cially in the basic iron and steel
industry, and also in the ma­
chinery, transportation equip­
ment, and fabricated metal prod­
ucts industries. The railroad,
construction, and mining indus­
tries also employed relatively
large numbers of blacksmiths.
Where oil wells are being drilled,
for example, blacksmiths sharpen
and temper drill bits, repair tools,
and assist drillers in the opera­
tion and maintenance of drilling
equipment.
About one-third of all black­
smiths worked in small shops
repairing farm implements, tools,
and other mechanical equipment.
Blacksmiths in these shops often
perform other services such as
welding, brazing, or tool sharpen­
ing. In addition, a few of these
craftsmen specialized in the shoe­
ing of horses. The vast majority
of the blacksmiths in these small
shops were self-employed.
Blacksmiths work in all parts
of the country, in small rural
communities as well as in large
industrial centers. However, em­
ployment is concentrated in Penn­
sylvania, Texas, California, Illi­
nois, Ohio, and New York. Horse­
shoers are found in all States
and, especially, where there are
numerous horses, horse farms,
and race tracks.
Train in g and O ther Q ualifications
Most workers enter the occu­
pation by obtaining jobs as help­
ers in blacksmith shops, where
they gradually learn the trade
through on-the-job experience.
Others enter through formal ap­
prenticeship training programs,
which generally last 3 or 4 years.
Apprenticeship programs custom­
arily provide training in blueprint
reading, proper use of tools and
equipment, heat-treatment of
metal, and forging methods, in-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

524

men. In addition, it is often
cheaper to replace many small
parts than to have them repaired
by a blacksmith. However, the
skills of all-round blacksmiths
will continue to be required in
the maintenance departments of
large industrial estalishments, in
many small metalworking and
repair shops, and to shoe horses.

Earnings and W orking Conditions

Em ploym ent O utlook

eluding forge welding. Most ap­
prentices are found in large in­
dustrial firms rather than in
small repair shops. Vocational
school or high school courses in
metalworking, blueprint reading,
and mathematics are helpful to
young persons interested in be­
coming blacksmiths.

Employment of blacksmiths is
e x p e c t e d to decline slowly
through the 1970’s. However, a
few hundred job openings will
arise each year to replace experi­
enced workers who retire, die, or
transfer to other fields of work.

Blacksmiths must have a
skilled touch to shape metal
parts to specified dimensions.
They also must be in good phy­
sical condition. Pounding metal
into shape and handling heavy
tools and metal parts require
considerable strength and stam­
ina. The use of power hammers
and hoists, however, reduces the
physical demands of the work.

The employment of black­
smiths is expected to decline in
the years ahead because forge
shops are producing a growing
variety of small metal articles
formerly made by blacksmiths.
Metalworking operations once
performed only by blacksmiths
are being done increasingly by
other specialized workers such
as welders and forge shop crafts­




National earnings data are not
available for blacksmiths. How­
ever, earnings data are available
from union-management con­
tracts in effect in 1968 covering
a large number of blacksmiths
employed in steel plants, railroad
shops, and in the shipbuilding
and petroleum industries. Al­
though these contracts show a
wide range of earnings for experi­
enced blacksmiths, the majority
of the contracts called for
straight-time hourly
earnings
ranging from about $3.25 to more
than $4.25. Contracts covering
blacksmiths in the petroleum in­
dustry specified hourly rates
ranging from about $3.60 to
slightly more than $4.00. Indus­
trial blacksmiths generally work
the same number of weekly
hours and have the same holi­
days, vacations, and other bene­
fits as other plant workers in
those industries in which they
work.
Blacksmith shops tend to be
hot and noisy because of the
closeness of furnaces and ham­
mers, although heat and noise
have been decreased in recent
years by the introduction of
large ventilating fans and the re­
duction of machine vibration.
Blacksmiths are subject to a num­
ber of job hazards such as burns
from forges and heated metals
and cuts, bruises, and other in­
juries from manual handling of
materials. Increased use of per-

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

sonal protective equipment, such
as safety glasses, metal helmets,
metal-tip shoes, instep guards,
face shields, ear plugs, and leath­
er aprons, has helped to decrease
the number of injuries.
Many blacksmiths belong to
unions. One important union is
the International Brotherhood of
Boilermakers, Iron Shipbuilders,
Blacksmiths, Forgers and Help­
ers. Other unions representing
blacksmiths include the United
Steelworkers of America, the In­
dustrial Union of Marine and
Shipbuilding Workers of Americe, and the International Union
of Journeymen Horseshoers.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
General information about the
work of blacksmiths may be ob­
tained from:
International Brotherhood of Boil­
ermakers, Iron Shipbuilders,
Blacksmiths, Forgers and Help­
ers, Eighth at State Ave., Kan­
sas City, Kans. 66101.

525

are employed in manufacturing
new boilers and heavy tanks. The
repair work performed by boiler­
makers requires these workers to
have all-round skills; fitup men
and layout men have more spe­
cialized duties.
B o i l e r m a k e r s (D. O. T.
805.281). These craftsmen as­
semble and erect prefabricated
parts and fittings at construction
sites where boilers or other pres­
sure vessels are used. After in­
stallation is completed, they con­
duct tests to check for defects.
Boilermakers also repair all kinds
of boilers. After first determining
the cause of trouble, they may
dismantle the boilers or other
units and make repairs, such as
patching weak spots with metal
stock, replacing defective sections
with new parts, or strengthening
joints. In addition to those work­
ing at construction sites, a large
number of boilermakers maintain
and repair boiler and other pres­
sure vessels in the powerplants of

industrial firms. Installation and
repair work performed by boiler­
makers often must meet stand­
ards set by State and local laws
covering boilers and other pres­
sure vessels.
Many large boilers are assem­
bled in manufacturing plants and
shipped as complete units. Boiler­
makers often perform this assem­
bly work, using the same skills
for plant work as for field work.
Boilermakers use a variety of
tools and equipment in their
work. They cut and shape metal
plate to size with power shears,
power rolls, power presses, or
oxyacetylene torches. They also
use welding or riveting equip­
ment. When assembling and
erecting steel plate units at a con­
struction site, they may use rig­
ging equipment such as, hoists,
jacks, and rollers.
Layout Men (D.O.T. 809.381
and .781). Metals used in the
m a n u f a c t u r e of b o i l e r s ,
tanks, vats, and other pressure

BOILERMAKING
OCCUPATIONS

N ature of the W ork
Boilermakers, layout men, and
fitup men are skilled craftsmen
who specialize in the repairing,
fabricating, and assembling and
disassembling of boilers, tanks,
vats, pressure vessels, heat ex­
changers, and similar structures
made of metal plate. These boil­
ers and other metal vessels are
used throughout industry to hold
liquids and gases under pressure.
Boilermakers are engaged pri­
marily in erecting and repairing
boilers and pressure vessels; lay­
out men and fitup men usually




Boilermakers erect steam generating boiler.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

526
vessels initially are prepared for
fabricating operations by layout
men. These workers mark curves,
lines, points, and dimensions on
metal plates and tubes that serve
as guides to other workers who
cut or shape the parts required
for fabrication of the pressure
vessel. They lay out parts to scale
as outlined on b l u e p r , i n t s ,
sketches, or patterns. Layout
men use compasses, dividers,
scales, surface gages, hammers,
and scribers in their work.
Fitup Men (D.O.T. 819.781).
Before the various parts of boil­
ers, tanks, vats, and other pres­
sure vessels finally are assem­
bled, fitup men temporarily as­
semble and fit them together in
the shop. They bolt or tack-weld
parts together and correct irregu­
larities. Fitup men also fit to­
gether nozzles, pipes, fittings, and
other parts.
Fitup men read and interpret
blueprints and drawings used in
the manufacturing process, check
parts for accuracy, and make cer­
tain the parts meet specifica­
tions. They use handtools such
as hammers, sledges, wrenches,
and punches, and equipment such
as welding machines, portable
drills, and grinding tools.

Places of Em ploym ent
About 25,000 boilermakers,
layout men, and fitup men were
employed in the United States in
1968. Several thousand were em­
ployed in the construction indus­
try, mainly to assemble and erect
boilers and other pressure vessels.
Boilermakers also were employed
in the maintenance and repair
departments of industries such
as iron and steel manufacturing,
petroleum
refining,
railroad
transportation, and electric and
gas utilities. Large numbers
worked in Federal Government
installations, principally in Navy




shipyards and Federal powerplants. Layout men and fitup
men were employed mainly in es­
tablishments that fabricate firetube and water-tube boilers, heat
exchangers, heavy tanks, and
similar boiler-shop products.
Boilermakers are employed in
every State because of the wide­
spread need for their skills in
repair and installation work.
Large numbers are employed in
the Middle Atlantic and East
North Central regions where met­
alworking industries are concen­
trated. Most layout men and fit­
up men also work in these two
regions. Pennsylvania, California,
Texas, Illinois, Ohio, New York,
and New Jersey are among the
leading States in the employment
of boilermaking craftsmen.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Many men have become boiler­
makers by working for several
years as helpers to experienced
boilermakers, but most training
authorities agree that a 4-year
apprenticeship is the best way
to learn this trade. In the ap­
prenticeship program, the ap­
prentice works under the close
supervision of a journeyman boil­
ermaker who instructs him in the
skills of the craft, including the
proper way to use the tools and
machines of the trade. Appren­
ticeship programs usually pro­
vide about 8,000 hours of rela­
tively continuous employment
and training, supplemented by
about 600 hours of related tech­
nical instruction. Some of the
technical subjects studied are
blueprint reading, shop mathe­
matics, welding techniques, and
shop metallurgical science cover­
ing stress and strain of metals.
Many layout men and fitup
men acquire their skills on the
job. They usually are hired as

helpers and learn the craft by
working with experienced work­
ers. It generally takes at least 2
years to qualify as an experi­
enced layout or fitup man in a
fabricating shop where boilers
and other pressure vessels are
produced on a mass-production
basis. In shops where products
are custom made, layout and fit­
up jobs generally are filled by
men who already qualify as skill­
ed boilermakers.
Most employers prefer to hire
beginning workers who have a
high school education. Prior
training in mathematics, blue­
print reading, and shopwork is
helpful to young men interested
in becoming boilermakers, layout
men, or fitup men. Most firms
require prospective employees to
pass a physical examination be­
cause good physical health and
the capacity to do heavy work
are necessary in these occupa­
tions. Mechanical aptitude and
manual dexterity also are impor­
tant qualifications.
Some boilermakers may be­
come foremen for contractors
specializing in boiler installation
and repair work. A few may go
into business for themselves.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of boilermakers,
layout men, and fitup men is ex­
pected to increase moderately
through the 1970’s. Most job op­
enings will arise from the replace­
ment of experienced workers who
retire, transfer to other fields of
work, or die. Retirements and
deaths alone are expected to re­
sult in approximately 600 job
openings annually.
The expected moderate in­
crease in employment of boiler­
makers, layout men, and fitup
men in the decade ahead will oc­
cur mainly because of the expan­
sion in industries that use boiler

527

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

products— particularly the elec­
tric and gas utilities, chemical,
petroleum, steel, and construction
industries. In addition to in­
creased demand for boiler prod­
ucts, the trend toward very large,
increasingly complex, custommade boilers is expected to spur
employment of skilled boilermak­
ers to erect this equipment on the
construction site. For example,
development of atomic energy fa­
cilities may create a need for
many more boilermakers, lay­
out men,
and
fitup
men,
either to manufacture or in­
stall boilers and related products.
In shops that fabricate boiler
products, however, growth in the
number of boilermakers, layout
men, and fitup men may be lim­
ited by the increasing use of more
efficient production techniques
and equipment, including im­
proved materials handling meth­
ods and welding equipment.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Wage rates of skilled boiler­
making workers compare favor­
ably with those of other crafts­
men. Layout men generally are
paid more than boilermakers or
fitup men, although wages vary
widely in each occupation be­
cause of differences in factors
such as the experience and skill
of the worker, the kind of indus­
try in which he is employed, and
the geographical region in which
he works.
Boilermakers in field assembly
and installation (construction)
work generally receive higher
hourly wage rates than boiler­
makers, layout men, and fitup
men employed in industrial es­
tablishments, although they may
not be employed as steadily. Ac­
cording to a national survey of
building trades workers in the
construction
industry,
union




minimum hourly wage rates for
boilermakers in 57 large cities
averaged $5.58, on July 1, 1968.
Among individual cities surveyed,
the union minimum hourly wage
rates for boilermakers ranged
from $4.85 in Atlanta, Ga., Jack­
sonville and Tampa, Fla., and
Knoxville and Memphis, Tenn.,
to $6.53 in New York City.
Straight-time hourly earnings,
excluding fringe benefits or pay­
ments to health, insurance, or
pension funds, for boilermakers
in 12 of the 57 cities selected to
show wage information from vari­
ous areas and regions of the
country, on July 1, 1968, appear
in the accompanying tabulation.
City

Rate per hour

Baltimore .............. ..............
Boston .................... ..............
Chicago .................. ..............
Cleveland................ ..............
Denver .................... ..............
Fresno .................... ..............
Houston .................. ..............
Kansas City .......... ..............
Los Angeles .......... ..............
New Orleans .......... ..............
Phoenix .................. ..............
Syracuse ................ ..............

$5.30
5.55
6.30
6.51
5.10
6.00
5.00
5.10
6.00
5.00
6.00
5.55

Comparable data were not
available covering boilermakers
employed in industrial estab­
lishments. However, information
on minimum hourly wage rates
was available from union-man­
agement agreements, in effect in
mid-1968, covering a large num­
ber of boilermakers, layout men,
and fitup men employed in
fabricated plate work, petroleum,
and shipbuilding industries. The
majority of these agreements
called for minimum hourly wage
rates ranging from $4.00 to about
$5.00 for layout men; from about
$3.75 to $4.75 for boilermakers;
and from about $3.50 to $4.60
for fitup men.
Boilermakers, layout men, and
fitup men in industrial establish­
ments usually work the same
number of weekly hours as other

plant workers, generally 40 hours.
Most union-management agree­
ments covering these workers
provide fringe benefits such as
hospitalization, and medical and
surgical insurance; paid vaca­
tions; life insurance; sickness and
accident insurance; and retire­
ment pensions.
When engaged in boiler repair
and assembly work, boilermakers
often are required to work in
cramped quarters or at great
heights. Some work also must
be done under conditions of
dampness, heat, and poor ven­
tilation.
Boilermaking is more hazard­
ous than many other metalwork­
ing occupations. Employers and
unions attempt to eliminate in­
juries in boilershops by promot­
ing safety training and the use of
protective equipment, such as
safety glasses and metal helmets.
Most
boilermakers,
layout
men, and fitup men belong to
labor unions. The principal un­
ion in these trades is the Inter­
national Brotherhood of Boiler­
makers, Iron Shipbuilders, Black­
smiths, Forgers and Helpers.
Some boilermaking craftsmen are
members of industrial unions,
such as the Industrial Union of
Marine and Shipbuilding Work­
ers of America; the Oil, Chemi­
cal and Atomic Workers Interna­
tional Union; and the United
Steelworkers of America.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

General information about the
work of boilermakers may be ob­
tained from:
International Brotherhood of Boil­
ermakers, Iron Shipbuilders,
Blacksmiths, Forgers and Help­
ers, Eighth at State Ave., Kan­
sas City, Kansas 66101.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

528

DISPENSING OPTICIANS
AND OPTICAL MECHANICS
(D.O.T. 713.251, .381, .884, and 299.884)

N a tu re of the W ork
Dispensing opticians and opti­
cal mechanics (also called opti­
cal laboratory technicians) make
and fit eyeglasses prescribed by
eye physicians (oculists or oph­
thalmologists) and optometrists
to convert defective vision. Opti­
cal mechanics grind and polish
lenses to the specifications of
prescriptions and assemble lenses
in frames. Dispensing opticians
then fit and adjust the finished
glasses to the customer’s facial
features. In some States, dis­
pensing opticians also fit contact
lenses. These lenses are worn in
contact with the eyes and are
used as a substitute for or sup­
plement to conventional eye­
glasses. Occasionally, both the
fabricating and fitting of glasses
are performed by the same per­
son.
The dispensing optician works
in a retail optical establishment.
He makes certain that the glasses
follow the prescription and fit
the customer properly. The op­
tician determines exactly where
the lenses should be placed in
relation to the pupils of the eyes
by measuring the distance be­
tween the centers of the pupils.
He also assists the customer in
selecting the proper eyeglass
frame by measuring the custom­
er’s facial features and giving
consideration 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 mechanic the
information he needs to interpret
the prescription properly, grind
the lenses, and insert them in a




frame. The work order consists
of the lens prescription; informa­
tion on the size, tint (where ap­
propriate), optical centering of
the lens, and other optical re­
quirements; and the size, color,
style, and shape of the frame.
After the eyeglasses are made,
the optician adjusts the frame
to the contours of the cus­
tomer’s face and head to make
sure they fit properly and com­
fortably. He uses small handtools, such as optical pliers, files,
and screwdrivers, and also uses a
precision instrument to check the
power and surface quality of the
lenses. In some shops, he may
do lense grinding and finishing,
and sell other optical goods such
as binoculars, magnifying glasses,
and nonprescription sunglasses.
In fitting contact lenses, the
dispensing optician, following the
physician’s or optometrist’s pre­
scription, measures the cornea of
the customer’s eye and then pre­
pares specifications to be follow­
ed by a firm specializing in fin­

ishing 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 fit­
ting. The dispensing optician in­
structs the customers in the in­
sertion, removal, and care of the
contact lenses during the intial
period of adjustment, which may
last several weeks. The physician
or optometrist rechecks their fit,
as needed. If minor adjustments
are necessary, the dispensing op­
tician makes them; if major
changes are needed, he returns
the lenses to the contact lens
manufacturer.
The optical mechanic performs
the shop or laboratory work re­
quired to make prescription eye­
glasses; but he does not make
contact lenses, which involve
somewhat different operations.
The two principal types of optical
mechanics are the surfacer (or

Dispensing optician fits glasses for proper functioning and attractive appearance.

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

prescription lens grinder) and the
henchman (or finisher). 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 con­
form to the prescription require­
ments. In small laboratories, one
man may perform all of these op­
erations and benchwork too. In
large laboratories, the work is di­
vided into separate operations
which are performed mainly by
workers who operate power grind­
ing and polishing machines. The
surfacer uses precision instru­
ments to measure the power of
the lenses.
The benchman marks and cuts
the ground and polished lenses
to fit the frame, bevels or smooths
the edges of the lenses, and as­
sembles the lenses and frame
parts into the finished eyeglasses.
In large laboratories, these duties
are divided into several operations
which are performed mainly by
semiskilled workers. The benchman uses small handtools, such
as lens cutters, chippers, pliers,
files, protractors, and diamond
point glass drills. He also uses
precision instruments to deter­
mine, for example, if there are
any imperfections in the lenses.
Places of Em ploym ent
An estimated 7,000 dispensing
opticians and 15,000 optical me­
chanics were employed through­
out the country in 1968. A few
thousand women are employed in
these trades— most as dispensing
opticians.
About 70 percent of all dis­
pensing opticians were employed
by retail optical shops or the op­
tical departments of department
stores and other retail establish­
ments; about 20 percent were
employed by eye physicians or
optmetrists who sell eyeglasses
directly to their patients. Most




529
T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

Optical laboratory mechanic surface
grinds.

of the remainder worked in the
prescription d e p a r t m e n t s of
wholesale optical laboratories
that did work for retail optical
firms; in special prescription
shops in large ophthalmic goods
factories; or were employed by
hospitals. Nearly 70 percent of
the mechanics worked in whole­
sale optical laboratories, and
about 25 percent worked in re­
tail optical shops; the rest
worked for the same types of
employers as did opticians.
In addition to the dispensing
opticians and optical mechanics
mentioned above, many others
are proprietors of retail optical
establishments.
Although opticians and me­
chanics are found in all States,
more than half are located in the
following States; New York,
Massachusetts,
Pennsylvania,
Texas, California, and Illinois.

Most optical mechanics and
dispensing opticians learn their
skills through informal, on-thejob training. On-the-job training
in dispensing work may last sev­
eral years and usually includes
instruction in optical mathe­
matics, optical physics, the use
of precision measuring instru­
ments, and other related subjects.
Trainees start in jobs requir­
ing simple skill and dexterity and
gradually work into the more dif­
ficult jobs. For example, they
may begin by processing lenses
through a lens grinding machine.
After they have become skilled in
this operation, the trainees per­
form other production operations,
such as polishing, edging, lens
cutting, and eyeglass assembly.
Their training may include
instruction in the measurement
and curvature of lens surfaces,
the measurement of lenses, and
other subjects related to their
work. When the trainees have
acquired experience in all types
of eyeglass production work,
which usually takes about 3
years, they are considered all­
round optical mechanics. Some
trainees become specialists on
one type of work performed by
optical mechanics, such as sur­
facing or bench work. The train­
ing time required to become a
specialist generally is less than
that needed to become an all­
round mechanic.
High school graduates also can
prepare for both optical dispens­
ing and mechanical work through
formal apprenticeship programs.
Some optical firms have 4- or 5year apprenticeship programs.
Apprentices having exceptional
ability may complete their train­
ing in a shorter period. Most
training authorities agree that
optical mechanics and dispensing
opticians who learn as appren-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

530
tices have more job opportunities,
improved job security, and more
opportunities for advancement
than those without such training.
Formal institutional training
for the dispensing optician is be­
coming increasingly common. As
of 1968, five schools offered 2year full-time courses in optical
fabricating and dispensing work
leading to an associate degree. In
addition, a number of vocational
schools offered full-time courses
lasting nine months in optical
mechanics. Graduates from such
schools often go to work for re­
tail optical stores where they re­
ceive additional on-the-job train­
ing. Large manufacturers of con­
tact
lenses offer nondegree
courses of instruction in contact
lens fitting that usually last a
few weeks.
Employers prefer applicants
for entry jobs as dispensing op­
ticians and optical mechanics to
be high school graduates who
have had courses in the basic sci­
ences. A knowledge of physics,
algebra, geometry, and mechani­
cal drawing is particularly valu­
able. 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 pleas­
ing personality.
In 1968, 17 States had licens­
ing requirements governing dis­
pensing opticians: Arizona, Cali­
fornia,
Connecticut,
Florida,
Georgia, Hawaii, K e n t u c k y ,
Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jer­
sey, New York, North Carolina,
Rhode Island, South Carolina,
Tennessee, Virginia, and Wash­
ington. Some of these States also
require licenses for optical me­
chanics in retail optical shops or
for the retail optical shop itself.
Some States permit dispensing
opticians to fit contact lenses
whereas others prohibit them
from doing so. T o obtain a li­
cense, the applicant generally




must meet certain minimum
standards of education and train­
ing and also pass a written or
practical examination, or both.
For specific requirements, the li­
censing boards of individual
States should be consulted.
Optical mechanics can become
supervisors, foremen, and man­
agers. Many of them have be­
come dispensing opticians, al­
though there is a trend to train
specifically for dispensing optic­
ian jobs. There are opportunities
for workers in both occupations
to go into business for them­
selves, especially for those having
all-round training in both shop
and dispensing work. Dispensing
opticians also may become man­
agers of retail optical stores.
Some dispensing opticians may
become salesmen for wholesale
optical goods companies or for
manufacturers of conventional
eyeglasses or contact lenses.

and educational level of the pop­
ulation; a large increase in the
number of older persons (a group
most likely to need eyeglasses);
and the growing emphasis on
good vision (more than half the
population over 6 years of age
now wear eyeglasses). In addi­
tion, the many different styles
and colors of eyeglass frames
now available have increased the
number of pairs of eyeglasses pur­
chased by individuals and en­
couraged the wearing of eye­
glasses.
The increase in production of
prescription lenses will result in
the growing employment of dis­
pensing opticians. However, prin­
cipally as a result of more effi­
cient methods of production and
improved equipment, employ­
ment of optical mechanics is not
expected to increase.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of dispensing op­
ticians is expected to increase
moderately through the 1970’s.
In addition to the opportunities
resulting from e m p l o y m e n t
growth, about 200 job openings
will result annually from the
need to replace experienced
workers who retire or die. Some
additional job openings will be­
come available as workers trans­
fer to other occupations.
Little or no change in the num­
ber of optical mechanics is ex­
pected during the 1970’s. Several
hundred job openings, however,
will be available annually because
of the need to replace experienced
mechanics who retire, die, or
transfer to other occupations.
The production of prescription
lenses is expected to increase
considerably during the period.
Factors that will contribute to
this growth include the increas­
ing size, and the rising literacy

According to information ob­
tained from union-management
contracts covering optical labora­
tory mechanics in 1968, minimum
hourly rates ranged from $2.40
to $3.80 an hour. Foremen earned
up to 20 percent more than opti­
cal mechanics, depending on their
experience, skill, and responsi­
bilities.
Dispensing opticians usually
earn about 10 to 20 percent more
than optical mechanics. Opticians
who have their own businesses
may earn much more.
Apprentices start at about 60
percent of the skilled worker’s
rate; their wages are increased
periodically so that upon com­
pletion of the apprenticeship pro­
gram, they receive the beginning
rate for journeymen.
Optical laboratory mechanics
at wholesale establishments usu­
ally have a 5-day, 40-hour work­
week. Dispensing opticians and
optical mechanics at retail shops

531

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

generally work a 5 ^ - or 6-day
week.
Workers in these occupations
usually have year round employ­
ment.
The work of the dispensing op­
tician requires little exertion and
is generally performed in pleas­
ant, well-lighted, and well-venti­
lated surroundings. Optical me­
chanics may work under fairly
noisy conditions because power
grinding and polishing machines
are used. New machines are much
quieter, however.
Physically handicapped per­
sons 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 opticians are members
of unions. One of these unions
is the International Union of
Electrical, Radio and Machine
Workers.
Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Optical Wholesalers Association,
222 West Adams St., Chicago,
11 . 60606.
1
International Union of Electrical,
Radio and Machine Workers,
1126 16th St. NW., Washington,
D.C. 20036.
Guild of Prescription Opticians of
America, 1250 Connecticut Ave.
NW., Washington, D.C. 20036.
American Board of Opticianry,
821 Eggert Rd., Buffalo, N.Y.
14226.

ELECTROPLATERS
(D.O.T. 500.380, .782, and .884)

N atu re of the W ork
Electroplaters (platers) use
plating solutions and electric cur­




rent (electrolysis) to coat metal
articles with a layer of chormium, nickel, silver, gold, or other
metal to give them a protective
surface or a more attractive ap­
pearance. Metal products that
often are electroplated include
items as widely different as auto­
mobile bumpers, cigarette light­
ers, silverware, costume jewelry,
plumbing fixtures, electrical ap­
pliances,
bearings,
electronic
components and jet engine parts.
Electroplaters also form objects
by a process known as electro­
forming. These include items
such as spray paint masks, search
light reflectors, and a variety of
molds used in the manufacture
of plastic items.
Platers’ skills vary broadly
among plating shops. All-round
platers who work in job shops
that do small lot plating of great
variety may mix and analyze
plating solutions, calculate the
time and electric current needed
for various types of plating, and
perform other duties requiring a
technical knowledge of the plat­
ing process. Platers who work in
production shops, where large
lots of metal parts of the same
type are plated, usually carry out
less difficult, more specialized
assignments that require only
limited technical knowledge.
An article to be electroplated
is scoured or dipped into a cleans­
ing solution. Any surface not to
be plated is covered with lacquer,
rubber, or plastic tape. The plat­
er or his foreman determines the
amount of current needed, time
required, and the best type of
solution to assure a good finish.
The article may be removed from
the solution at intervals to make
sure the work is progressing sat­
isfactorily. Platers must be ob­
servant because unnoticed errors
can be costly.
Many types of plating require
inspection for visible defects. On
jobs that require close tolerance,

the plater may use micrometers,
calipers, and electronic devices
to determine the quality of the
work. Helpers frequently assist
electroplaters by placing objects
on racks before plating, removing
them afterwards, and then clean­
ing tanks and racks. In some
shops, platers order chemicals
and other supplies for their work.

Places of Em ploym ent
An estimated 13,000 electro­
platers were employed in 1968.
About 3 out of 5 worked in inde­
pendent job shops specializing in
metal plating and polishing for
other manufacturing firms and
for individuals. The remaining
platers were employed in plants
primarily engraved in the manu­
facture of plumbing fixtures,
heating and cooking utensils,
lighting fixtures, wire products,
electric control apparatus, elec­
tric appliances, radio and tele­
vision products, motor vehicles
and parts, mechanical measuring
instruments, miscellaneous hard­
ware items, and other metal
products.
Electroplaters are employed in
almost every part of the country,
although most work in the North­
east and Midwest near the cen­
ters of the metalworking indus­
try. Large numbers of electro­
platers work in Los Angeles, San
Francisco, Chicago, New York,
Detroit, Cleveland, Providence
and Newark (New Jersey).

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Most electroplaters learn the
trade on the job as helpers by
working with experienced platers.
Three years or longer are re­
quired to become an all-round
plater in this way. Platers em­
ployed in production shops who

532

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of electroplaters
is expected to increase moderate­
ly through the 1970’s. Most open­
ings however, will result from the
need to replace experienced
workers who retire, die, or trans­
fer to other fields of work.
Continuing mechanization of
the electroplating process and
the assigning of some of the plat­
er’s technical responsibilities to
chemists and foremen will limit
employment growth in this occu­
pation. However, these factors
will be more than offset by the
long-run expansion in the ma­
chinery and metalworking indus­
tries and the application of the
electroplating processes to a
broadening group of metals and
plastics.

Earnings and W orking Conditions

Electroplater inspects batch of plastic items immersed in nickel solution.

are not required to have an all­
round knowledge of plating can
learn their jobs in much less
time. A small percentage of elec­
troplaters have received all-round
preparation by working 3 or 4
years as an apprentice.
The program for apprentices
combines on-the-job training and
related classroom instruction in
the properties of metals, chem­
istry, and electricity as applied
to plating. The apprentice does
progressively more difficult work
as his skill and knowledge in­
crease. By the third or fourth
year, he determines cleaning
methods, does plating without




supervision, makes solutions, ex­
amines plating results, and super­
vises helpers. Qualified journey­
men may advance to foremen.
High school and vocational
school courses in chemistry, elec­
tricity, physics, mathematics,
and blueprint reading will prove
valuable to young persons inter­
ested in becoming electroplaters.
Some colleges, technical insti­
tutes, and vocational high schools
offer 1- or 2-year courses in elec­
troplating. In addition, many
branches of the American Elec­
troplaters Society conduct basic
courses in electroplating.

Wage rates of electroplaters
ranged from $1.75 to $3.50 an
hour in 1968, according to the
National Association of Metal
Finishers. All-round platers, gen­
erally earned more than $2.50
an hour. During apprenticeship
or on-the-job training, a worker’s
wage rate starts at 60 to 70 per­
cent of an experienced worker’s
rate and progresses to the full
rate by the end of his training
period. Almost all plants, pay
shift premiums for night work.
Many employers provide paid
holidays and vacations and pay
part or all of additional benefits
such as life, health, and accident
insurance.
Plating work involves some
hazards because acid, alkaline, or
poisonous solutions are used.
Humidity and odor also are prob­
lems in electroplating plants.
However, most plants have in­
stalled systems of ventilation and
other safety devices which have
considerably reduced the occupa-

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

tional hazards. Protective cloth­
ing and boots provide addi­
tional protection. Mechanical de­
vices generally are 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 Polishers, Buffers,
Platers and Helpers Interna­
tional Union. Other platers have
been organized by the Interna­
tional Union, United Automobile,
Aerospace and Agricultural Im­
plement Workers of America, and
the International Association of
Machinists and Aerospace Work­
ers. Some of the labor-manage­
ment contracts covering electro­
plating provide health insurance
and other benefits.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
For educational information
concerning electroplating and
other metal finishing methods,
write to:
American Electroplaters Society,
Inc., 56 Melmore Gardens, East
Orange, N.J. 07017.

For information on job oppor­
tunities, training,
and other
questions, write to:
National Association of Metal Fin­
ishers, 248 Lorraine Ave., Upper
Montclair, N.J. 07043.

FURNITURE
UPHOLSTERERS
(D.O.T. 780.381)

N ature of the W ork
Upholstered furniture that has
become old and worn is recondi­
tioned by furniture upholsterers.




These craftsmen replace worn
furniture fabric, repair broken
frames, or replace or repair bent
springs, webbing, and other worn
parts of furniture. The upholst­
erer usually places the piece of
furniture on padded wooden
horses so that he may work at a
convenient level. Using a tack
puller or chisel and mallet, he
pulls out the tacks that hold the
fabric in place and removes the
fabric. He also may remove pad­
ding and burlap that cover the
springs. He examines the springs
and removes the broken or bent
ones. If the webbing that holds
the springs in place is worn, all
of the springs and the webbing
may be ripped out. The uphol­
sterer then repairs the frame by
regluing loose sections and refin­
ishing worn wooden arms.
To reupholster the furniture,
the upholsterer first tacks strips
of webbing to the frames. Next,
he sews new springs to the web­
bing and ties each spring to the
adjoining ones, securing the out­
side springs to the frame. He
then uses burlap, filling, and pad­
ding to cover the springs, and
sews the padding to the burlap.
Finally, after covering the pad­
ding with muslin and new fabric,
he attaches these materials to the
frame and makes sure that they
are smooth and tight. He com­
pletes the job by sewing or tack­
ing on fringe, buttons, or other
ornaments ordered by the cus­
tomer.
Upholsterers use a variety of
handtools in their work, includ­
ing tack and staple removers,
pliers, hammers, and shears.
They also use special tools such
as webbing stretchers and uphol­
stery needles. Upholsterers who
work in small shops lay out pat­
terns and use hand shears or ma­
chines to cut the upholstery fab­
ric. They also operate sewing ma­
chines to form new upholstery
covers. In large shops, however,

533
seamstresses u s u a l l y perform
these tasks. Sometimes upholster­
ers pick up and deliver furniture.
These who own their shops order
supplies and equipment, keep
business records, and perform
other managerial and administra­
tive tasks. (This statement does
not include furniture upholsterers
who manufacture upholstered
furniture.)

Places of Em ploym ent
More than one-half of the esti­
mated 32,000 furniture uphol­
sterers employed in 1968 worked
in small upholstery shops, fre­
quently having fewer than eight
employees. Many upholsterers
also were employed by furniture
stores, and a few worked for or­
ganizations— movie theatres, ho­
tels, motels , and others— that
maintain their own furniture.
Employment of furniture up­
holsterers is distributed geo­
graphically in much the same
way as the Nation’s population.
Thus, they are employed mainly
in major metropolitan areas and
in the more populated States.
Almost one-half of the upholster­
ers employed in 1968 worked in
New York, California, Pennsyl­
vania, Texas, Illinois, and Ohio.
Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
The most common way to
learn this trade is to complete an
informal on-the-job training pro­
gram in an upholstery shop.
Prospective upholsterers are hir­
ed as helpers to perform simple
jobs, such as removing old fabric,
padding, and springs from furni­
ture. As they gain experience,
they perform more complex tasks,
such as installing webbing and
springs and sewing on upholstery
fabric and trimming. Inexperi-

534

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

Em ploym ent O utlook
Overall employment of uphol­
sterers is expected to show little
or no change through the 1970’s.
Most job openings will result
from the replacement of experi­
enced workers who die, retire, or
transfer to other fields of work.
Deaths and retirements alone are
expected to provide more than
600 job openings annually. There
have been many unfilled job
openings in this trade in recent
years because the supply of quali­
fied workers has been insufficient
to meet the demand. Moreover,
this shortage may continue for
several years, because the num­
ber of people currently being
trained is still insufficient to
meet anticipated future require­
ments.
Among the factors tending to
increase requirements for furni­
ture upholsterers are the growing
expenditures for furniture, the
growth in family formation, and
the higher levels of personal in­
comes. However, these factors
will be offset by the rising cost
of reupholstering furniture rela­
tive to replacing it.
enced helpers who have initiative
may become skilled upholsterers
after about 3 years of on-the-job
training.
Upholsterers can learn their
skills while employed as plant
workers in furniture factories by
performing a variety of plant jobs
that are closely related to furni­
ture upholstering. They also may
learn upholstering through voca­
tional or high school courses that
include chair caning, furniture
making, textile fabrics, and up­
holstery repair. However, on-thejob training usually is required
before these workers qualify as
journeymen upholsterers.
A few people acquire the skills
of the trade through formal ap­




prenticeship programs that last
from 3 to 4 years and include re­
lated classroom instruction.
Young people interested in be­
coming furniture upholsterers
should have good manual and fin­
ger dexterity and be able to do
occasional heavy lifting. An eye
for detail, ability to distinguish
between colors, and a flair for cre­
ative work are helpful.
Furniture upholsterers usually
purchase their handtools but em­
ployers provide power tools.
Almost 1 out of every 3 uphol­
sterers is self employed— a higher
proportion than in most other
trades. Opening an upholstery
shop usually requires a moderate
investment.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Earnings data for furniture up­
holsterers are not available on a
national basis. However, limited
information obtained in 1968
generally indicated that through­
out the country rates for helpers
ranged from $1.60 to $2.25 an
hour, and for experienced uphol­
sterers, from $3 to $5 an hour. A
few upholsterers were paid on a
piecework basis. The hourly rates
for upholsterers depended on fac­
tors such as their level of skill,
the length of time they had been
employed, and the type and geo­
graphic location of the establish­
ment in which they worked.
Hourly rates for upholsterers in

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

the South were generally lower
than those in the North and
West.
Furniture upholsterers usually
receive little direct supervision.
They generally work 40 hours a
week, although overtime is com­
mon during the weeks before ma­
jor holidays. Many upholsterers
receive paid vacations and sick
leave, and some are covered by
health insurance plans.
Upholstery shops often are
spacious, adequately lighted, and
well ventilated and heated. How­
ever, dust from padding and
stuffing sometimes is present.
Upholsterers stand while they
work and do a considerable
amount of stooping and bending
They may work from awkward
positions for short periods of
time. Upholstery work generally
is safe, although minor cuts from
sharp tools and back strain from
lifting and moving heavy furni­
ture are not uncommon.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Upholsterers International Union
of North America, 1500 North
Broad St., Philadelphia, Pa.
19121.

GASOLINE SERVICE
STATION ATTENDANTS
(D.O.T. 915.867)

N atu re of the W ork
Almost all of the more than
95 million motor vehicles in the
United States are serviced at one
time or another in a gasoline
service station. When a car or
truck is driven into a station,
the service station attendant
(also called gasoline station
salesman or serviceman) greets




the customer and inquires about
his needs. The attendant may
perform a variety of services for
the customer, ranging from di­
recting the customer to a street
address to making a minor repair.
When servicing a car, he dis­
penses gasoline, cleans the wind­
shield, and, with the customer’s
permission, checks the water
level in the radiator and battery,
the oil level in the crankcase and
automatic transmission, and the
air pressure in the tires. He also
may check the tires, fan belt,
and other parts of the car for
excessive wear.
The attendant also has other
responsibilities besides servicing
cars. He sells and installs items
such as tires, batteries, fan belts,
and windshield wiper blades.
When a customer pays his bill, he
makes change or prepares a
charge slip if the customer uses
a credit card. He also may dis­
pense trading stamps. In small
stations, particularly, he may
perform minor maintenance and
repair work, such as lubrication,
changing the engine oil, rotating
tires, repairing tires, or replacing
a muffler. Some attendants,
called mechanic-attendants, per­
form more difficult repairs. Be­
fore and after doing maintenance
and repair work, the attendant
may drive the customer’s car be­
tween a convenient parking place
and the service area. He also may
keep the service areas, building,
and restrooms clean and neat. In
some stations, he helps the stat­
ion manager take inventory, set
up displays, and perform other
duties associated with the opera­
tion of a small business.
If a gasoline service station
provides emergency road service,
the attendant may drive a tow
truck to a stalled car and change
a flat tire or perform other minor
repairs needed to fix the custom­
er’s vehicle. If more extensive
repairs are needed, he tows the

535

vehicle back to the service
station.
In doing maintenance and re­
pair work, gasoline service sta­
tion attendants may use simple
handtools such as screwdrivers,
pliers, and wrenches; and power
tools such as p n e u m a t i c
wrenches. Mechanic-attendants
frequently use more complex
equipment such as motor analy­
zers and wheel alignment ma­
chines.

Places of Em ploym ent
An estimated 410,000 service
station attendants, more than
one-third of whom were parttime workers, were employed in
gasoline service stations in 1968.
In addition to attendants, about
220,000 gasoline service station
managers and owners did similar
work.
Gasoline service station at­
tendants are employed in every

536
section of the country, in the
largest cities, the smallest towns,
and outlying areas. About 40 per­
cent, however, are employed in
the seven States that have the
largest number of motor vehicles:
California, Texas, New York,
Ohio, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and
Michigan.

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

An applicant for a job as gaso­
line service station attendant
should have a driver’s license, a
general understanding of how an
automobile works, and some sales
ability. 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 busi­
ness records. An applicant should
be familiar with local roads, high­
ways, and points of interest in
order to give directions to strang­
ers and to locate vehicles whose
owners have called for road serv­
ice.
Although completion of high
school is not generally a require­
ment for getting an entry job, it
is an advantage because it indi­
cates to many employers that a
young man can “ finish a job.” A
high school education generally
is required for attendants to
qualify for service station man­
agement training programs con­
ducted by oil companies, and to
advance to the position of serv­
ice station manager.
Gasoline service station at­
tendants usually are trained on
the job, although there are some
formal training programs. At­
tendants, who are trained on the
job first are given relatively sim­
ple work assignments. They may




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

be required to keep the station
clean, wash cars, dispense gaso­
line, clean windshields, and oth­
erwise make themselves useful.
Gradually, they progress to more
advanced work such as making
sales, writing credit charge slips,
doing simple maintenance work,
installing accessories on cars, and
helping to keep the station rec­
ords. It usually takes from sev­
eral months to a year for a gaso­
line 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 cur­
riculum, known as distributive
education, students in their last
2 years of high school take busi­
ness education courses and work
part-time in a gasoline service
station where they receive in­
struction and supervision in all
phases of service station work.
Some attendants are enrolled
in formal training programs for
service station managers, which
are conducted by most major oil
companies. These programs usu­
ally last from 2 to 8 weeks and
emphasize subjects such as sim­
ple
automobile
maintenance,
salesmanship, and business man­
agement.
Several avenues of advancment are open to gasoline service
station attendants. Additional
training qualifies attendants to
become automobile mechanics;
those having business manage­
ment capabilities may advance
to station manager. Many experi­
enced station managers and auto­
mobile mechanics go into busi­
ness for themselves by leasing a
station from an oil company, the
most common means, or by buy­
ing their own service station.
Some service station attendants
are hired by oil companies as
salesmen or district managers.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of gasoline serv­
ice station attendants is expected
to increase moderately through
the 1970’s, creating several thou­
sand full-time and part-time job
openings annually. An even
greater number of job openings
will result from the need to re­
place attendants who transfer to
other fields of work, are promoted,
retire, or die. Deaths and retire­
ments alone are expected to pro­
vide an estimated 4,700 full-time
job opportunities annually.
Employment of service station
attendants is expected to increase
as a result of the growing con­
sumption of gasoline and other
service station products. The
number of motor vehicles regis­
tered is expected to rise because
of growing population, income,
multiple car ownership, and the
continuing movement to the sub­
urbs. Also, greater use of cars as
families have more leisure time
is expected and as the highway
systems continue to be improved.
More attendants also may be
needed to perform additional
maintenance on newer, more
complex cars. For example, more
cars will have devices that reduce
exhaust fumes, and these devices
must be serviced periodically.
On the other hand, more cars
that require oil changes and
lubrication less frequently will
offset partially the servicing re­
quirements of additional, more
complex vehicles.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Hourly earnings of gasoline
service station attendants vary
considerably. According to in­
formation from 30 gasoline dealer
associations across the country,
average straight time hourly
earnings in 1968 ranged from
$1.25 to $1.50 in Tuscon, Ari-

537

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

zona, to $2.85 in Chicago, Illi­
nois. More than one half of the
gasoline dealer associations re­
ported average weekly earnings
of at least $100 for full-time
gasoline service station attend­
ants. The remainder of the asso­
ciations reported average weekly
earnings of between $65 and $98.
In many stations, employers
provide fringe benefits such as
accident and health insurance
and paid vacations. Some employ­
ers furnish uniforms and pay for
their cleaning; others require the
attendants to pay for these ex­
penses. More than one-half of the
attendants work over 40 hours
a week; many work more than 48
hours.
Attendants frequently
work at night and on weekends
and holidays.
A gasoline service station at­
tendant works outdoors in all
kinds of weather. He must be in
good physical condition because
he does considerable lifting and
stooping and spends much time
on his feet. Possible injuries in­
clude cuts from sharp tools and
burns from hot engines. The at­
tendant frequently gets dirty be­
cause he dispenses gasoline, han­
dles oil and grease, and works
with tools and around cars. For
many attendants, however, the
opportunity to meet new people
and the possibility of someday
managing their own service sta­
tions more than offset these dis­
advantages. For others, the op­
portunity to get part-time em­
ployment is important.
Some high school and college
students have been able to work
their way through school by
working as gasoline service sta­
tion attendants after school, and
on vacations and holidays. Some
workers also supplement their in­
come from regular jobs by work­
ing part time as attendants.




Sources of A dditional Inform ation
For further information re­
garding work opportunities for
gasoline service station attend­
ants, inquiries shoud be directed
to local gasoline service stations
or the local office of the State
employment service.

INSPECTORS
(MANUFACTURING)

N atu re of the W ork
Almost everything manufac­
tured must be carefully inspected
during the manufacturing proc­
ess. The millions of automobiles,
sewing machines, television sets,
production machines, 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, assemblies, and finished
products meet specifications are
known as inspectors.
Inspectors use a variety of
methods in order to be certain
that the products they examine
conform to specifications. They
may merely look for scratches
and other defects in products or
parts; or they may use gages, mi­
crometers, and other measuring
devices to check the accuracy of
the parts. Semiskilled inspectors
may be required to read simple
work orders, and do arithmetic
involving decimals and fractions
when reading measuring instru­
ments. Inspectors often keep rec­
ords of the number of parts they
have 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. Some inspectors use handtools, such as screwdrivers or
pliers, in their work. In some in­
dustries, inspectors may make
minor repairs and adjustments,
and grade products for quality.
The kinds of products that in­
spectors check vary widely by in­
dustry. For example, in radio and
television manufacturing plants,
many inspectors test tubes and
circuits to determine if they meet
specifications. In the automobile
industry, they examine raw ma­
terials and parts during the var­
ious stages of manufacturing, as
well as the complete automobile.
Skilled inspectors work under
general supervision, w h e r e a s
semiskilled inspectors usually
work under close supervision.
Skilled inspectors often use a
much wider variety of testing in­
struments. In the metalworking
industries they are often required
to read blueprints and interpret
complex specifications. They gen­
erally have greater discretion in
accepting or rejecting products
and usually are responsible for
inspecting the most critical parts
of mass-produced goods.

Places of Em ploym ent
In early 1968, approximately
585,000 inspectors (most of whom
were semiskilled) were employed
in a wide variety of manufactur­
ing industries. Most of these in­
spectors worked in plants pro­
ducing durable goods such as
electrical and nonelectrical ma­
chinery, fabricated metal prod­
ucts, transportation equipment,
and aerospace products. Others
were employed in plants produc­
ing non-durable goods such as
chemicals, textiles, apparel, and
food products. Large numbers of
inspectors were employed in
Ohio, New York, Michigan, Illi­
nois, Pennsylvania, California,
and New Jersey.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

538

skilled inspectors. A few inspec­
tors, after acquiring sufficient
experience and knowledge, may
advance to foremen jobs.

Em ploym ent O utlook
The employment of inspectors
is expected to increase slowly
through the 1970’s, creating sev­
eral thousand job openings an­
nually. However, most opportu­
nities will result as workers re­
tire, die, or transfer to other
fields of work, and as women
leave their jobs to marry or
rear a family. Deaths and retire­
ments alone will account for
about 15,000 openings each year.

Inspector checks precision drilling.

About one-half of all inspectors
were women. Many of these wom­
en were employed in the food,
textile, and apparel industries.
Others were employed through­
out the metalworking industries,
especially in plants that produce
small electrical and electronic
components.

T rain in g , O th er Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Inspectors generally are train­
ed on the job for a brief period
— from a few hours or days to
several months, depending upon
the skill required.
Many employers look for ap­
plicants who have good health
and eyesight, can follow direc­
tions, and are dependable. 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 em­
ployees who can do work requir­
ing constant attention. Employ­
ers may hire applicants who do
not have a high school diploma
if they have qualifying aptitudes
or related job experience.
Some semiskilled inspectors in
the metal products industries
who supplement their work ex­
perience with formal educational
courses, such as blueprint read­
ing, shop mathematics, and elec­
trical theory, may advance to

Most of the industries that em­
ploy these workers, especially the
electrical machinery industry, are
expected to increase their em­
ployment in the long run. The
growing complexity of the prod­
ucts manufactured in our factor­
ies, and rising quality standards,
should also result in a need for
more inspectors. These factors
will be partially offset, however,
by the increasing use of mecha­
nized and automatic inspection
equipment.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Inspectors’ earnings vary con­
siderably, depending on their
skill, the type of product in­
spected, the method of wage pay­
ment, 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
responsibility involved. The fol­
lowing tabulation presents aver­
age straight-time hourly earnings
of inspectors in the nonelectrical
machinery industry:

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS
Average straight-time hourly earnings of class A,
B and C inspectors in nonelectrical machinery,
mid-1967
Class A Class B Class C
Area

United States1 ..... $3.20 $2.87 $2.44
2.23
2.76
New England .. 2.97
2.39
2.82
Middle Atlantic 3.12
2.24
2.77
Border States .. 3.20
1.77
2.13
Southeast ........ 2.79
2.09
2.65
Southwest ....... 2.97
2.65
2.99
Great Lakes..... 3.28
2.48
2.80
Middle West .... 3.20
2.80
2.51
Pacific.............. 3.47
’ Includes data for Mountain States.

Working conditions also vary
considerably for inspectors. For
example, some may work in welllighted, air-conditioned work­
places in an aircraft or missile
plant; others, who may work on
the production floor of a machin­
ery or metal fabricating plant,
often are exposed to high tem­
peratures, oil, grease, and noise.
Many inspectors employed in
manufacturing
industries are
members of labor unions. The In­
ternational Union, United Auto­
mobile, Aerospace and Agricul­
tural Implement Workers of
America; the International Asso­
ciation of Machinists and Aero­
space Workers; the International
Union of Electrical, Radio and
Machine Workers; and the Inter­
national Brotherhood of Electri­
cal Workers are among the large
unions to which these workers
belong. Most of the labor-man­
agement contracts in manufac­
turing plants employing inspec­
tors provide for fringe benefits,
such as paid holidays and vaca­
tions, health insurance, life insur­
ance, and retirement pensions.

JEWELERS AND JEWELRY
REPAIRMEN
(D.O.T. 700.281 and .381)

N ature of the W ork
Jewelers are skilled craftsmen
who make or repair rings, pins,




necklaces, bracelets, and other
precious jewelry. They create
jewelry from metal such as gold,
silver, and platinum, and set
precious or semiprecious stones.
To repair jewelry, they solder
broken parts, make new parts,
enlarge or reduce the size of
rings, reset stones, and restyle
old jewelry. The jewelers’ work
is very delicate and must be done
with care and precision, as the
materials used usually are expen­
sive. An eye “ loupe,” or magnify­
ing glass held over the eye, often
is used when working to close
tolerances. To make jewelry,
jewelers may follow their own
design or one prepared by a de­
sign specialist. The metal is
formed to follow the design in
one of several ways. Special-order
work may involve shaping metal
stock with hand and machine
tools or melting and casting met­
al in a mold. When jewelry is
prodced in volume, the metal
usually is formed either by the
casting or the stamping process.

539
Shaping metal stock by hand
may involve the following metal­
working operations: outlining,
cutting, drilling, sawing, filing,
shaping, engraving, and electro­
plating. Individual parts are pol­
ished and then joined by solder­
ing. After the article has been
assembled, surface decorations
are made and jewels or stones are
mounted. When jewelry is made
in this manner, tools such as
files, saws, drills, dapping, carv­
ing, and chasing tools; jewelers’
lathes; soldering irons; and pol­
ishing machines are used.
To cast gold and platinum jew­
elry, a model is made by a jew­
elry modelmaker, a craftsman
who has a thorough knowledge of
the casting process. A rubber
mold is produced from the model,
and into this mold wax or plastic
is injected under pressure. The
pattern produced is placed in a
plasterlike material and burned
out, leaving a cavity in the
material. The precious metal then
is cast into this cavity by cen-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

540
trifugal force. After cooling, the
cast piece is removed. Articles
produced by the process re­
quire a minimum of finishing.
Jewels or stones then may be set
in the cast piece and it may be
engraved.
Cast costume jewelry is pro­
duced similarly, except that the
metal is cast directly into a rub­
ber or metal mold, and either
tumbled and plated or finished
on a polishing machine.
In the stamping process, which
is used to make costume and
some precious jewelry, the metal
piece is formed in a stamping
machine that brings together, un­
der tremendous force, a die and
metal from which the piece is to
be made. The die has a cavity
shaped to the exact contour and
dimension of the desired article.
As a rule, jewelers specialize in
making a particular kind of jew­
elry, or in a particular operation,
such as making models and tools,
engraving, polishing, or setting
diamonds and other stones. After
years of experience, some become
all-round jewelers capable of
making and repairing any kind
of jewelry. Costume jewelry and
some kinds of precious jewelry
are mass produced by factory
workers using assembly line
methods. However, skilled jewel­
ers are needed to make the mod­
els and tools for this large-scale
production. They also may per­
form finishing operations, such
as stone setting and engraving,
on stamped or cast pieces.
Many jewelers make and repair
jewelry in their own stores where
they also may sell jewelry,
watches, and other merchandise,
such as silverware, china, and
glassware, and repair watches.
Other jewelers operate trade
shops that specialize in making
jewelry and in doing repair work
for jewelry stores owned or oper­
ated by merchants who are not
jewelry craftsmen or who take in




more repair work than they can
handle.

Places of Em ploym ent
About 25,000 jewelers and
jewelry repairmen were employed
in 1968. Most of those who were
self-employed owned either retail
jewelry stores or trade shops.
More than half of those who were
not self-employed worked in jew­
elry manufacturing establish­
ments; others worked in retail
jewelry stores.
The Nation’s 20,000 retail jew­
elry stores are located throughout
the country. The heaviest con­
centration of these stores, as well
as the thousands of small trade
shops that service them, is lo­
cated in large commercial cen­
ters, such as New York City, Chi­
cago, Los Angeles, and San
Francisco.
Nearly three-fourths of all
precious jewelry manufacturing
plants are located in New York,
New Jersey, Rhode Island, and
California. The New York City
metropolitan area is the center
of precious jewelry manufactur­
ing.

Train in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Young persons generally learn
the jewelry trade either by serv­
ing a formal apprenticeship or
through informal o n-t h e-j o b
training while working for an ex­
perienced jeweler. Jewelry repair,
which usually is less complicated
than jewelry making, can be
learned in a short time by in­
dividuals already trained in fil­
ing, sawing, drilling, and other
basic mechanical skills. Courses
in jewelry repair are given in sev­
eral trade schools. Other trade
schools offer courses in specific
types of jewelry work, such as

diamond setting, jewelry design,
and engraving.
Formal apprenticeship in this
trade, depending on the type of
training, takes from 3 to 4 years.
For example, 3 years are re­
quired to become a colored-stone
setter and 4 years to qualify as
a diamond setter. Throughout
the apprenticeship, training on
the job is supplemented by trade
school instruction in design, qual­
ity of precious stones, chemistry
of metals, and other related sub­
jects. Initial work assignments
may be to set up work for solder­
ing or to do simple soldering or
rough polishing. As an appren­
tice gains experience, he advances
to more difficult work. After com­
pletion of the apprenticeship, he
becomes a qualified journeyman
jeweler.
A high school education is de­
sirable for young people seeking
to enter the trade. Courses in
chemistry, physics, mechanical
drawing, and art are particularly
useful. Personal qualifications
chanical aptitude, finger and
hand dexterity, and good eyehand coordination. Artistic abil­
ity is necessary for work in jew­
elry design. For those planning to
become retail jewelers or to open
trade shops on manufacturing es­
tablishments, the ability to deal
with people and manage a busi­
ness is a necessity. Because peo­
ple in this trade work with prec­
ious stones and metals they must
be bonded. Bonding requires an
investigation of one’s personal
background for honesty, trust­
worthiness, and respect for the
law.
Jewelry manufacturing estab­
lishments in the major produc­
tion centers offer the best op­
portunities for a young person to
acquire all-round skills, even
though the number of trainees
accepted is small. Trade shops
also offer training opportunities,
but their small-size— many are

541

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

one- or two-man shops— limits
the number of trainees.
Jewelry workers may advance
in several ways. In manufactur­
ing, they can advance from pro­
duction jewelers to shop foremen.
In retail stores, jewelers may be­
come heads of sales departments
or store managers. Those crafts­
men employed in jewelry making
and repair departments operated
by large retail establishments
may advance to department man­
agers. Some jewelry workers es­
tablish their own retail stores or
trade shops.
A substantial financial invest­
ment is required to open a retail
jewelry store and the field is
highly competitive in most parts
of the country. Jewelers inter­
ested in going into business for
themselves will find it advantage­
ous to work first in an establish­
ed retail jewelry store, trade
shop, or jewelry manufacturing
plant. Persons planning to open
their own jewelry stores should
have experience in selling jew­
elry. Those craftsmen who can
repair watches have an advan­
tage over those who can repair
jewelry only, since watch repair
work is a substantial part of the
business in many small jewelry
stores. Talented and experienced
jewelers of recognized integrity
can establish their own trade
shops or small manufacturing
shops with a more moderate fi­
nancial investment. The location
of these shops is limited to areas
that have a large volume of jew­
elry business. For manufacturing,
this means the major production
centers. Trade shops have best
chances for success in moderate
or large cities where there are
many retail jewelry stores.

Em ploym ent Outlook
Employment requirements for
jewelers and jewelry repairmen




are expected to show little or no
change though the 1970’s. How­
ever, hundreds of job openings
will arise annually because of re­
tirements and deaths among ex­
perienced workers. Most job
openings are expected to be filled
by people trained in only one or
two specialties of the trade such
as stone setting, engraving, mod­
elmaking, casting, or polishing.
Nevertheless, all-round jewelers
will continue to be in demand,
and have been in short supply in
recent years.
Rising levels of personal in­
comes are expected to result in a
substantial increase in the de­
mand for precious and costume
jewelry, and an expected increase
in family formations will spur de­
mand for engagement and wed­
ding rings. However, the employ­
ment effect of an increased de­
mand for jewelry will be offset
by more efficient means of pro­
ducing and repairing jewelry.
The demand for jewelry crafts­
men during the 1970’s is ex­
pected to differ by place of em­
ployment. In jewelry manufac­
turing, most job openings will be
filled by specialized craftsmen as
mass-production techniques are
adopted increasingly. In trade
shops, where a large volume of
repair work permits job specializ­
ation, job openings also will be
filled mainly by specialized

Occupation

craftsmen. In retail jewelry
stores, however, there will be job
opportunities for both all-round
jewelers and specialized crafts­
men.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Beginning pay for jewelry re­
pairmen employed in retail stores
and trade shops ranged from
$90 to $125 a week in 1968; ex­
perienced workers in these es­
tablishments earned up to $225
weekly. Wages were highest for
jewelry repairmen who worked
in large metropolitan areas. Jew­
elers who own retail stores or
trade shops earn considerably
more than jewelers working as
employees in these establish­
ments.
One union-management agree­
ment, covering about 2,600 jew­
elry workers employed in plants
manufacturing precious jewelry
in New York City, provides the
minimum hourly rates shown in
the accompanying tabulation for
inexperienced workers (including
apprentices) and for journeymen
in selected crafts, in 1968. Aver­
age hourly earnings for journey­
men covered by this agreement in
1968 also are shown in the tabu­
lation.
Under this agreement, all in­
experienced workers, including
Average
hourly
earnings
1968

Starting rate— all inexperienced workers ..............................................
Journeyman’s rate:
Production jewelers.................................................................... $3.65
Jewelers—handmade work ......................................................... 4.12
Modelmakers ............................................................................... 4.66
Stone setting:
Diamond ................................................................................... 4.39
Colored stones......................................................................... 3.92
Handmade work................................................................................
Chasers........................................................................................... 3.82
Engravers ................................................................................... 3.42
Polishers ..................................................................................... 3.30
Casters ........................................................................................... 3.66
Lappers ......................................................................................... 4.09
Toolmakers ................................................................................. 4.71
Hub Cutters ............................................................................... 5.55

Minimum
hourly
job rate
1968

$1.66

2.80
3.30
3.35
3.30
3.00
3.55
2.80
2.80
2.80
2.60
2.75
3.05
3.50

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

542

(D.O.T. 316.781, 316.884)

divide animal carcasses, from
which the hide, head, and en­
trails have been removed, into
steaks, roasts, chops, and other
serving sized portions. They also
prepare meat products such as
sausage, corned beef, and meat
loaf. Meat cutters who work in
retail food stores may set up at­
tractive counter displays and
wait on customers.
In cutting a beef carcass, the
meat cutter divides it into halves
with a band saw, and then quar­
ters it by cutting each half be­
tween the ribs with a knife and
sawing through the backbone. He
uses special meat cutting saws to
divide the quarters into major
(primal) cuts, such as rib or
chuck, and then uses a butcher
knife and a smaller boning knife
to divide the primal cuts into re­
tail cuts such as T-bone steak
or rib roast.
The meat cutter may divide
the retail cuts into individually
sized portions. He uses a butcher
knife or sheer to divide boneless
cuts, and a band saw or cleaver
to divide cuts containing bones.
He removes any chips that may
remain on the meat either by
scraping it with his butcher knife
or placing the meat on a machine
that has a small revolving brush.
Meat trimmings and some less
expensive cuts are ground into
hamburger.
In addition to cutting meat,
the meat cutter may pickle or
“ corn” meat by pumping a brine
solution into the arteries. He may
place some of the cuts on a tenderizer machine which increases
tenderness by injecting an en­
zyme into the meat.

N atu re of the W ork

Places of Em ploym ent

Meat cutters prepare meat,
fish, and poultry for sale in su­
permarkets or wholesale food
outlets. Their primary duty is to

The 200,000 meat cutters em­
ployed in 1968 were located in al­
most every city and town in the
Nation. Only a small proportion

apprentices, receive increases of
15 cents an hour after 30 days of
employment and 15 cents an hour
every 3 months until they reach
the minimum journeyman rate for
their particular job, which is con­
siderably lower than average
hourly earnings in the trades.
Skilled workers in the precious
jewelry
manufacturing
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. Retail jewelers
and jewelry repairmen work 40
to 48 hours a week, and may
work longer hours during the
holiday seasons.

Sources of A d ditional In fo rm atio n
Information on employment
opportunities for jewelers and
jewelry repairmen in retail jew­
elry stores may be obtained from:
Retail Jewelers of America, Inc.,
1025 Vermont Ave. NW., Wash­
ington, D.C. 20005.

Information on employment
opportunities in manufacturing
establishments may be obtained
from:
Manufacturing Jewelers and Sil­
versmiths of America, Inc.,
Sheraton-Biltmore Hotel, Room
S-75, Providence, R.I. 02902.
International Jewelry Workers’
Union, Local No. 1, 133 West
44th St., New York, N.Y. 10036.

MEAT CUTTERS




were women. Most meat cutters
worked in retail food stores. A
large number also worked in
wholesale food outlets; a few
worked in restaurants, hotels,
hospitals, and other institutions.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Meat cutters acquire their
skills either through apprentice­
ship programs or by means of
on-the-job experience. Under the
guidance of skilled journeymen
meat cutters, trainees learn the
identity of various cuts and
grades of fresh meats and cold
cuts and the proper use of tools
and equipment. They learn to use
scales, make counter displays,
slice luncheon meats and cheese,
wrap meat, and wait on custom­
ers.
Carcass breaking, boning, and
portion cutting are a major part
of the meat cutter’s training. To
perform carcass breaking— the
successive division of the carcass
into halves, quarters, and primal
cuts— trainees learn to use the
band saw, rotary saw, and butch­
er knife. During the boning oper­
ation, in which the excess skin,
bones, and fat are removed and
the primal cuts are divided into
retail cuts, they learn to use the
boning knife and to increase their
skill with the butcher knife. Gen­
erally, the last cutting function
trainees learn is portion cutting.
During this phase, they learn to
operate the sheer, grinder, and
small band saw, and to use the
revolving brush that removes
bone chips.
In addition to cutting opera­
tions, beginning meat cutters
learn to dress fish and poultry,
roll and tie roasts, grind ham­
burger, prepare sausage, cure and
corn meat, and may learn to
use the vacuum and tenderizer
machines. During the latter

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

Meat cutter uses band saw to cut chuck.

stages of training, they may
learn marketing operations such
as inventory control, meat buy­
ing and grading, and record keep­
ing.
Meat cutters who learn the
trade
through apprenticeship
generally complete 2 to 3 years
of supervised on-the-job training
which may be supplemented by
some classroom work. A meat
cutting test is given at the end
of the training period that is ob­




served by the employer, and if
the shop is unionized, usually by
a union member. If the appren­
tice passes the test, he becomes
a fully qualified journeyman
meat cutter. In many areas of
the country, the apprentice may
become a journeyman in less
than the usual training time if
he is able to pass his meat cut­
ting test at an earlier date.
The most common method of
entering this occupation is to be

543
hired and trained by an individ­
ual retail or wholesale outlet. A
few meat cutters have gained en­
try by attending training pro­
grams sponsored under the Man­
power Development and Training
Act or by attending vocational
schools that offer courses in meat
cutting.
Employers prefer entrants who
have a high school diploma and
also have the potential to de­
velop into meat department or
retail store managers. Employers
look for applicants who have had
training in mathematics, since
the meat cutter may be called
on to weigh and price meats and
to make change; in English, since
many outlets want their meat
cutters to wait on and advise
customers; and in the use of
power tools, since power tools
are used frequently in the daily
work of the occupation.
Manual dexterity, good form
and depth perception, color dis­
crimination, and good eye-hand
coordination are important in
cutting meat. Better than aver­
age strength is necessary since
meat cutters often must lift
heavy loads and stand on their
feet much of the day. In some
communities, a health certificate
may be required for employment.
Meat cutters may progress
from journeyman to first cutter
and then to meat department
manager of a retail food store.
Some become meat buyers, and
those who learn the operation of
the grocery section of a retail
outlet can become retail store
managers. In a few instances, ex­
perienced meat cutters have
opened their own meat markets
or retail food stores.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Demand for meat is expected
to increase substantially in the
future due to population growth

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

544
and increased personal income.
However, little or no increase in
the total number of meat cutters
is anticipated through the 1970’s,
since increasing worker produc­
tivity is expected to offset larger
output. Nevertheless, thousands
of entry jobs for meat cutters will
be available during the next dec­
ade to replace meat cutters who
retire, die, or transfer to other
occupations. Deaths and retire­
ments alone are expected to cre­
ate about 4,000 job openings each
year.
A number of technological ad­
vances are expected to limit the
growth of the total number of
meat cutters employed in future
years. Technological advances
that are now available and ex­
pected to be used more widely
include a greater use of power
tools, such as electric saws, elec­
tronic scales, and wrapping ma­
chines that can weigh, package,
and stamp prices automatically;
and machines that tie strings on
roasts or other boneless cuts. In
the future, power assisted knives
may be used for boning and por­
tion cutting, and processes that
separate meat from bones by
means of centrifugal force or
other means are being tested.
Central cutting, which estab­
lishes one point from which meat
for a given area is cut and wrap­
ped, may limit the employment
growth of meat cutters. As a re­
sult of central cutting, fewer
meat cutters will be needed in
individual retail stores to cut or
package meat. Central cutting
also permits meat cutters to spe­
cialize in both the type of meat
cut and the type of cut per­
formed. Thus, the job content of
many meat cutters may change
from that of a generalist capable
of performing all meat cutting
operations to that of a specialist
who performs a few cuts on one
kind of meat. Central cutting also
tends to reduce the amount of




training necessary to achieve a
sufficient degree of cutting skill.
In many wholesale outlets, a
significant degree of specializa­
tion similar to central cutting is
already in effect. Many wholesale
outlets perform “ portion cutting”
for restaurants, hotels, and oth­
er institutions. Rather than keep­
ing a meat cutter on the prem­
ises, the hotel or restaurant or­
ders a desired number of servingsize portions from the wholesaler.
The effect has been to displace
some meat cutters formerly em­
ployed by hotels, restaurants,
and other institutions.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
In 1968, average
ings of journeymen
working a standard
selected cities were

Meat cutters often are exposed to
sudden
temperature
changes
when entering and leaving re­
frigerated areas and may be ex­
posed to unpleasant odors.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

Information on training and
other aspects of the trade may
be obtained from:
American Meat Institute, 59 East
Van Buren Street; Chicago, Illi­
nois 60605.
Amalgamated Meat Cutters and
Butcher Workmen of North
America, 2800 North Sheridan
Road, Chicago, Illinois 60657.

weekly earn­
meat cutters
workweek in
as follows:

Further information about lo­
cal work opportunities and man­
power development and training
programs can be obtained from
Boston ............................................. $143 local employers or by contacting
Chicago ............................................ 144 local offices of the State employ­
Kansas City................................... 139 ment service.

Philadelphia...................................
St. Louis.........................................
Cleveland ........................................
Houston ..........................................
New York.......................................
San Diego.......................................
Washington, D.C............................

149
160
143
124
138
153
144

Beginning apprentices usually
receive between 60 and 70 per­
cent of journeymen wages and
generally receive increases every
6 to 8 months until they achieve
the journeyman level. Most meat
cutters are union members of the
Amalgamated Meat Cutters and
Butcher Workmen of North
America.
Meat cutters generally work in
a well-lighted and well-ventilat­
ed environment. They must ex­
ercise care since sharp instru­
ments, such as knives, grinders,
saws, cleavers, scrapers, and
shears, are used. To prevent ac­
cidents, most machinery is equip­
ped with protective devices, and
safety gloves often are worn.

MOTION PICTURE
PROJECTIONISTS
(D.O.T. 960.382)

N atu re of the W ork
The projectionist is an impor­
tant man behind the scenes in
the motion picture theater. From
an elevated room at the back of
the theater, he operates the pro­
jection machines and audio
equipment, assuring high quality
screen and sound presentation for
the audience.
In showing a feature length
movie, the projectionist uses two
projectors, audio equipment, a
film rewinding machine, and sev­
en reels or more of film. Before

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

the first feature is scheduled to
begin, he checks the equipment
to see that it operates properly
and loads the two projectors with
the first and second reels to be
shown. T o load a projector he
threads the film through a series
of sprockets and guide rollers,
and attaches it to a take-up reel.
Most projectors burn a carbon
rod to provide light for the
screen. After igniting and adjust­
ing the carbon rod, the projec­
tionist starts the projector con­
taining the first reel. When the
real has reached proper running
speed, he opens a shutter and the
picture appears on the screen. If
the picture is out of focus or un­
steady, he makes the necessary
adjustments on the projector.
A film reel lasts approximately
20 minutes. When the first reel
is near completion, the projec­
tionist; watches for cue marks
(small circles in the upper right
hand corner of the screen) which
indicate that it is time to start
the second projector. When a
second series of cue marks ap­
pears, he simultaneously closes
the shutter on the first projector
and opens the shutter on the sec­
ond projector. This changeover
happens so quickly that the view­
er in the audience does not no­
tice an interruption on the
screen. Next, the projectionist re­
moves the used reel, and rewinds
it on the rewinding machine. The
projectionist repeats the process
described above until all the rods
have been used. If the film breaks
the projectionist must work rap­
idly to rethread it so that the
show may continue.
In addition to operating the
equipment,
the
projectionist
cleans and lubricates it, checks
for defective parts and damaged
film, and makes minor repairs
and adjustments. By keeping his
equipment in good operating con­
dition, the projectionist reduces
the possibility of malfunctions




545
perform the duties of the projec­
tionist.

T rain in g and O ther Q ualifications

and breakdowns. For example, he
may replace a badly worn projec­
tor sprocket which could eventu­
ally cause film damage or an un­
steady picture. Major repairs are
made by servicemen who special­
ize in projection and audio equip­
ment.

Places of Em ploym ent
An estimated 16,000 full-time
motion picture projectionists—
nearly all of them males— were
employed in 1968. More than
three-fourths of them were em­
ployed in indoor theaters; most
of the remainder were employed
in drive-in theaters. Other em­
ployers of projectionists included
large manufacturers, television
studios, and Federal, State, and
local governments. Most theaters
employ one projectionist per
shift; few employ more than two.
Projectionists work in cities
and towns of all sizes throughout
the country. In a theater located
in a small town, the theater own­
er or a member of his family may

Most motion picture theaters
in urban areas are unionized, and
young people who aspire to work
as motion picture projectionists
in these theaters must complete
a period of apprenticeship. Ap­
prenticeship applicants must be
at least 18 years of age, and high
school graduates usually are
preferred.
The length of time a person
must serve as an apprentice be­
fore taking an examination for
union membership may vary from
1 to 2 years, depending on the
policies of union locals. However,
if he is capable of performing the
work, an apprentice may be as­
signed to a full- or part-time job
at journeyman’s pay before be­
coming a member. In a few cities
and States, projectionists must
be licensed.
An apprentice learns the trade
by working full- or part-time
with experienced projectionists.
He first learns simple tasks, such
as threading and rewinding film,
and, as he gains experience, pro­
gresses to more difficult assign­
ments such as adjusting and re­
pairing equipment. He may work
in several theaters to become fa­
miliar with different types of
equipment. Many apprentices re­
ceive no pay while being trained.
In a non-union theater, a young
man may start as an usher or
helper and learn the trade by
working with an experienced
projectionist.
Young men interested in be­
coming projectionists should have
good eyesight, including normal
color perception and good hear­
ing. They should be tempera­
mentally suited to working alone
in close quarters. Manual dex­
terity and mechanical aptitude

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

546
are also important personal quali­
fications. Practical experience
gained from operating small
movie projectors at home, at
school, or in the Armed Forces
also is helpful.

E m ploym ent O utlook
Employment of motion picture
projectionists is expected to in­
crease slowly through the 1970’s.
Most job opportunities will arise
as experienced workers retire,
die, or transfer to other fields of
work. Retirements and deaths
alone may result in several hun­
dred job openings annually, but
competition for the available
openings is likely to continue to
be keen. Some of these openings
will be filled by experienced pro­
jectionists who are unemployed
or underemployed.
Employment of projectionists
is closely related to the number
of motion picture theaters. Fol­
lowing a rapid decline in the
1950’s and early 1960’s, the
number of theaters has leveled off
in recent years but is expected to
increase slightly d u r i n g the
1970’s. Among the factors which
may contribute to this increase
are the growing population, ris­
ing personal incomes, increased
leisure time, and the continued
movement of people to suburban
areas.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Motion picture projectionists
had average straight-time hourly
earnings of more than $3.00 in
1968. In some large cities, aver­
age hourly earnings of these
workers were $5.00 or more. Gen­
erally, downtown theaters pay
higher hourly rates than subur­
ban or drive-in theaters.
Most projectionists work eve­
nings. Generally, those employed




on a full-time basis work 4 to 6
hours, 6 evenings per week. They
may work more than 6 hours on
Saturday in a theater which fea­
tures Saturday matinees. Some
projectionists work at several
theatres. For example, a projec­
tionist’s weekly schedule may
call for 2 evenings in each of
three theaters. Projectionists em­
ployed in drive-in theaters, par­
ticularly those in Northern
States, may be laid off for sev­
eral months during the winter.
Many projectionists receive 2
or 3 weeks of paid vacation and
premium pay for weekend or holi­
day work. Some projectionists
are covered by hospitalization
and pension plans.
The motion picture projection­
ist works in a room called a pro­
jection booth. In most theaters,
these booths have adequate light­
ing, ventilation, and work space.
Many booths are air conditioned.
The work is relatively free of
hazards, but there is danger of
electrical shocks and burns if
proper safety precautions are not
taken. The motion picture pro­
jectionist’s work is not physically
strenuous. He frequently lifts and
handles film reels, but most of
these weigh no more than 35
pounds. Although he must be on
his feet much of the time, he can
sit for short periods while the
equipment is in operation. Most
projectionists work without di­
rect supervision and have infre­
quent contact with other theater
employees.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Further information about ap­
prenticeship programs and em­
ploy opportunities may be ob­
tained from any local union of
the International Alliance of
Theatrical Stage Employees and
Moving Picture Machine Opera­

tors of the United States and
Canada.

PHOTOGRAPHIC
LABORATORY
OCCUPATIONS
(D.O.T. 970.281; and 976.381, .687,
.782, .884, .855, .886, and .887)

N atu re of the W ork
Photographs, such as those
contained in books, magazines,
and newspapers and amateur
snapshots and home movies, re­
quire the skills of thousands of
people employed in photographic
laboratories. These workers de­
velop film, make prints and
slides, and perform related tasks
such as enlarging photographs.
(This chapter does not discuss
employees of laboratories that
specialize in processing profes­
sional motion picture film.)

All-round darkroom techni­
cians (D.O.T. 976.381) perform
all tasks necessary to develop and
print film. Although these work­
ers may use some mechanized
processing equipment, they rely
chiefly on manual methods. The
darkroom technician develops
film in tanks and trays contain­
ing chemical solutions. He varies
the developing process according
to the type of film— black and
white negative, color negative, or
color positive. For example, a de­
veloping process for black and
white negative film covers five
steps; developer, stop bath, fix­
ing bath, washing, and drying.
The first three steps are per­
formed in darkness. After un­
winding a roll of film, the dark­
room technician places it in the
developer, a chemical solution
that brings out the image on ex­
posed film. After the film has

547

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

remained in the developer for a
specified period of time, the dark­
room technician transfers it to a
stop bath to prevent over-devel­
opment. Next, he places the film
in a fixing bath that makes it in­
sensitive to light, thus preventing
further exposure. He then washes
the film to remove the fixing so­
lution and places it in a drying
cabinet. If a developed negative
has flaws, such as scratches or
bare spots, the darkroom techni­
cian may retouch these areas us­
ing an ink-like substance. Devel­
oping processes for color negative
and color positive films are more
complex than those used in black
and white negative film. Thus,
some laboratories employ color
technicians (D.O.T. 976.381)—
highly skilled workers who spe­
cialize in processing color film.
The darkroom t e c h n i c i a n
makes a photograph by transfer­
ring the image from a negative to
photographic paper. Printing fre­
quently is performed on a projec­
tion printer, which consists of a
fixture for holding negatives and
photographic paper, an electric
lamp, and a magnifying lens. The
darkroom technician places the
negative between the lamp and
lens, and the paper below the
lens. When he turns on the lamp,
light passes through the negative
and lens and records a magnified
image of the negative on the
paper. During printing, the dark­
room technician may vary the
contrast of the image or remove
unwanted background by using
his hand or paper patterns to
shade parts of the photographic
paper from the lamp light. After
removing the exposed photo­
graphic paper from the printer,
he develops it in much the same
way as the negative. If the cus­
tomer desires, the darkroom tech­
nician mounts the finished print
in a frame or on a paper or card­
board back, using cement or a
hand-operated press.




In addition to working in the
laboratory, darkroom technicians
may set up lights and cameras
or otherwise assist experienced
photographers. Many darkroom
technicians, particularly those
employed in portrait studios, di­
vide their time between taking
pictures and processing them. In
some laboratories, helpers assist
darkroom technicians. They also
may be assisted by workers who
specialize in a particular activity,
such as d e v e l o p e r s (D.O.T.
976.381), printers (D.O.T. 976.381), and photograph retouchers
(D.O.T. 970.281).
In large, mechanized photo­
graphic laboratories, darkroom

technicians may be employed to
supervise semiskilled workers.
Most semiskilled workers per­
form specialized assignments that
require only a limited knowledge
of developing and printing proc­
esses. Included are film numberers
(D.O.T. 976.887), who sort film
according to the type of process­
ing needed and number each roll
for identification purposes; film
strippers (D.O.T. 976.887), who
unwind rolls of film and place
them in developing machines;
printer operators (D.O.T. 976.782), who operate machines that
expose rolls of photographic pa­
per to negatives; print develop­
ers, machine (D.O.T. 976.885),

Darkroom technician examines finished print.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

548
who operate machines that devel­
op these rolls of exposed photo­
graphic paper; chemical mixers
(D.O.T. 976.884), who measure
and combine the various chemi­
cals that make up developing so­
lutions; slide mounters (D.O.T.
976.885), who operate machines
that cut, insert, and seal film in
cardboard mounts; and photo­
checkers and assemblers (D.O.T.
976.687), who inspect the fin­
ished slides and prints and pack­
age them for customers.

Places of Em ploym ent

In 1968, an estimated 30,000
workers were employed in photo­
graphic laboratory occupations.
Almost half of them were dark­
room technicians; the remainder
worked in semiskilled photofin­
ishing
occupations.
Although
most darkroom technicians are
men, women predominate in
many of the semiskilled occupa­
tions. For example, most printer
operators, slide mounters, photo­
checkers, and assemblers are
women.
A large proportion of darkroom
technicians are employed in
photographic laboratories oper­
ated by portrait and commercial
studios and by business and gov­
ernment organizations. The latter
include manufacturers, newspap­
er and magazine publishers, ad­
vertising agencies, and Federal,
State, and local governments.
Darkroom technicians also are
employed in small commercial
laboratories that specialize in
processing the work of free-lance
photographers, advertising agen­
cies , magazine publishers, and
others. Most semiskilled workers
are employed by large commer­
cial photographic laboratories
that specialize in processing film
for amateur photographers.




Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Most darkroom technicians
learn their skills through informal
on-the-job training. Beginners
start as helpers and gradually
learn to develop and print film
by assisting experienced techni­
cians. It generally takes 3 or 4
years to become a fully qualified
darkroom technician. Some help­
ers become specialists in a par­
ticular activity such as printing
or developing. Generally, the
training time required to become
a specialist is less than is needed
to become an all-round darkroom
technician.
Employers prefer to hire dark­
room technicians’ helpers who
have a high school education.
Courses in chemistry, physics,
and mathematics are helpful to
young people interested in this
trade. Some high schools and
trade schools offer courses in
photography that include train­
ing in film processing. Experience
gained through processing film
as a hobby also is helpful. Some
darkroom technicians have re­
ceived training and experience in
the Armed Forces.
Two-year curriculums leading
to an associate degree in photo­
graphic technology are offered by
a few colleges. Completion of col­
lege level courses in this field is
helpful to people aspiring to su­
pervisory and managerial jobs in
photographic laboratories.
Many darkroom technicians
eventually become professional
photographers. Others advance to
supervisory positions in labora­
tories. Darkroom technicians who
acquire their experience in small
laboratories
need
additional
training before they can qualify
for supervisory positions in large
laboratories where mechanized
equipment is used.
Training
requirements
for
workers in semiskilled occupa­

tions range from a few weeks to
several months of on-the-job
training. For example, film numberers and slide mounters usually
can learn their jobs in less than
a month, but printer operators
and chemical mixers need several
months or longer. For many semi­
skilled jobs, manual dexterity,
good vision including normal col­
or preception, and good eye-hand
coordination are important quali­
fications. However, some labora­
tories employ blind workers as
film numberers and film strip­
pers, since these jobs may be per­
formed in the dark to prevent
damage to exposed film. Comple­
tion of high school generally is
not required for semiskilled jobs,
but it frequently is needed for ad­
vancement to supervisory jobs.

E m ploym ent O utlook
Employment in photographic
laboratory occupations is expect­
ed to increase m o d e r a t e l y
throughout the 1970’s. Most job
opportunities, however, will result
from the need to replace experi­
enced workers who retire, die, or
transfer to other fields of work.
Retirements and deaths alone
will create an estimated 850 job
openings annually.
The need for semiskilled work­
ers is tied closely to the growth
of amateur photography. Film
purchases by amateur photog­
raphers are expected to increase
rapidly through the 1970’s as a
result of rising population and
personal income, more leisure
time, and increased travel. Im­
provements in still and movie
cameras that make them easier
to load, unload, and operate also
should contribute to increases in
the use of film. However, the
more widespread use of mecha­
nized film processing equipment
and improvements in this type of
equipment will tend to increase

549

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

the efficiency of laboratory work­
ers, thus keeping employment
from growing as fast as the vol­
ume of film processed.
The need for all-round dark­
room technicians is expected to
increase as a result of the grow­
ing demand for photography in
business and government. A ma­
jor factor contributing to this de­
mand will be the increasing va­
riety of printed matter, such as
sales brochures, cataloges, and
public relations literature that is
illustrated with photographs. The
growing use of photography in
research and development activi­
ties also will contribute to the
demand for darkroom techni­
cians. However, the generally fa­
vorable employment effects of
these factors will be partially off­
set by the greater use of mecha­
nized film processing equipment
in small laboratories.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Information obtained from sev­
eral employers in 1968, indicates
that earnings of workers in pho­
tographic laboratory occupations
vary greatly, depending on fac­
tors such as skill level, experi­
ence, and geographic location.
Beginning pay for inexperienced
darkroom technician’s helpers
generally ranged from $1.65 to
$2.25 an hour. Most of the ex­
perienced all-round darkroom
technicians earned between $2.50
and $5.00 an hour. In addition
to all-round darkroom techni­
cians, color technicians and print­
ers generally had the highest
earnings.
Workers in semiskilled occupa­
tions earned from $1.60 to $3.50
an hour. Among these workers,
printer operators and chemical
mixers generally had the highest
earnings.
In the Federal Government,
photographic laboratory techni­




cians earned between $5,100 and
$9,100 annually.
Many photographic laborator­
ies provide paid holidays, vaca­
tions, and other benefits such as
medical-surgical insurance. Work­
ers in photofinishing laboratories
operated by business and govern­
ment organizations receive the
same fringe benefits as their fel­
low employees.
The majority of photographic
laboratory employees have a
standard workweek of 40 hours
and receive premium pay for
overtime. In laboratories that
specialize in processing film for
amateur
photographers,
em­
ployees may work a considerable
amount of overtime during the
summer and for several weeks af­
ter Christmas. Many laboratories
employ additional workers tem­
porarily during these seasonal
peaks.
Most photographic laboratory
jobs are not physically strenuous.
In many semiskilled occupations,
workers perform their jobs while
sitting, but the work is repetiti­
ous and the pace is rapid. Some
of these workers (for example,
printer operators and photo­
checkers and assemblers) are
subject to eye fatigue. Photofin­
ishing laboratories are generally
clean, well lighted, and air con­
ditioned.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

Additional information about
employment opportunities in pho­
tographic l a b o r a t o r i e s and
schools that offer degrees in pho­
tographic technology may be ob­
tained from:
Master Photo Dealers’ and Finish­
ers’ Association, 603 Lansing
Ave., Jackson, Mich. 49202.

POWER TRUCK
OPERATORS
(D.O.T. 892.883; 921.782 and .883; and
922.782 and .883)

N atu re of the W ork
In the past, manual workers in
factories usually did the hard
physical labor of moving raw ma­
terials and products. Today,
many heavy materials are moved
by workers who operate various
types of self-powered trucks,
which can easily carry tons of
material and lift it to heights of
many 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 contain­
ers, and scoops to lift coal or
other loose material. Some power
trucks are equipped with tow
bars used to pull small trailers.
Power truck operators start the
truck, drive it forward or back­
ward, stop the truck, and control
the lifting mechanism and attach­
ments by moving pedals and lev­
ers. Power truck operators may
be required to keep records of
materials moved, do some man­
ual loading and unloading of ma­
terials, and maintain their trucks
in good working condition by
cleaning, ' oiling, checking the
water in batteries, and making
simple adjustments.
The driver must use care and
skill in driving his truck. For ex­
ample, in driving through aisles
where materials are stored, or
when loading or removing mate­
rials from stock, which may be
stacked from floor to ceiling, he
must be able to judge distance
so that no damage occurs. The
operator also must know how
much the truck can lift and
carry and the kinds of jobs it
can do.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

550

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Most workers can learn to op­
erate a power truck in a few days.
It takes several weeks, however,
to learn the physical layout and
operation of a plant or other es­
tablishment, and the most effi­
cient way of handling the mate­
rials to be moved.
Large companies generally re­
quire applicants for a power truck
operator job to pass a physical
examination. Many large compa­
nies also have formal training
programs for new employees. In
these training programs, the em­
ployee learns to operate the pow­
er truck, to do simple mainte­
nance work, principles of loading
and handling materials, plant lay­
out and plant operation, and safe
driving practices and rules.
There are some opportunities
for advancement. A few operators
may become materials movement
foremen or supervisors.
Em ploym ent O utlook
Places of Em ploym ent
In 1968, more than 100,000
power truck operators were em­
ployed in manufacturing plants
throughout the country. About
half of these operators worked in
the North Central States. Al­
though semiskilled power truck
operators were employed in all
types of manufacturing indus­
tries, many were employed in
metalworking plants that manu­
factured automobiles and auto­
mobile parts, machinery, fabri­
cated metal products, and iron
and steel. In addition to working
in factories, large numbers of
power truck operators were em­
ployed in warehouses, depots,
dock terminals, mines, and other
places where great quantities of
materials must be moved.




Employment of power truck
operators is expected to increase
slowly through the 1970’s. Most
job openings will result from the
need to replace workers who will
retire, die, or transfer to other
jobs.
Because of the need to move
the increasingly huge amounts of
manufactured goods demanded
by the Nation’s growing popula­
tion and rising standard of living,
most of the industries which em­
ploy large numbers of these work­
ers are expected to have a longrange upward trend in employ­
ment. In addition, the increasing
use of containers and pallets for
moving goods will increase the
need for power truck operators.
The favorable effects of these
two factors on employment, how­
ever, will be partially offset by
the continued development of
more efficient power trucks and

other mechanized materials-handling equipment.
Earnings and W orking Conditions
Power truck operators em­
ployed in manufacturing indus­
tries generally are paid an hourly
rate. The following table presents
average straight-time h o u r l y
earnings for such workers:
Average straight-time hourly earnings of power
truck operators in manufacturing, 1968
Hourly
Area
rate

United States ................................$2.92
Northeast....................................... 2.88
South ............................................. 2.48
North Central................................ 3.06
West ............................................... 3.08

Power truck operators are sub­
ject to several hazards— such as
falling objects and collisions be­
tween vehicles. Safety instruction
is an important part of the job
training in power trucking work.
The driver may operate his
truck inside buildings or outdoors
where he is exposed to various
weather conditions. Some opera­
tors 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 employ­
ing power truck operators pro­
vide for fringe benefits such as
paid holidays and vacations,
health insurance, life insurance,
and retirement pensions.

PRODUCTION PAINTERS
N atu re of th e W ork
Almost every metal or wood
product manufactured by Ameri-

551

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

can industry is given a coating of
paint or other protective mate­
rial. In mass-production indus­
tries, this painting is done by
workers known as production
painters. Most of these workers
use spray guns to apply paint,
lacquer, varnish, or other finishes
to parts or finished manufactured
products. Some production paint­
ers use brushes to apply paint
and others operate semiauto­
matic paint spraying machines,
dipping tanks, or tumbling bar­
rels. The work done by produc­
tion painters in factories is dif­
ferent from that performed by
skilled painters who are employed
in constuction and maintenance
work. (See statement on Paint­
ers.)
Production painters who oper­
ate spray guns pour paints into a
spray gun container that 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 at­
tached to a moving conveyor.
Production painters who operate
semiautomatic painting machines
may load items into the machine
or onto conveyors before apply­
ing paint. When working on ob­
jects requiring more than one
color, production painters may
apply masking tape to prevent
overlapping of colors.
Although the duties of most
production painters are simple
and repetitive, the jobs of some
may be varied. These production
painters may make decisions in­
volving the application of fin­
ishes, thinning of paint, and the
adjustment of paint spray equip­
ment. Production painters also
may clean the surface to be
painted before painting. When
production painters are required
to mix paints and figure the size
of the area to be painted, they
use simple arithmetic involving




decimals and fractions. Produc­
tion painters may replace nozzles
and clean guns and other paint
equipment when necessary. Some
production painters may operate
specialized spray guns such as
those operated at high tempera­
tures and used to spray powdered
plastics. In addition to their
painting equipment, production
painters use tools, such as mixing
paddles, pliers, wrenches, rules,
and gages, that indicate the con­
sistency of liquid paint.

woman. Two-thirds of all produc­
tion painters were in industries
making durable items such as au­
tomobiles, refrigerators, furni­
ture, electrical measuring meters,
and transformers. About half of
all production painters were em­
ployed in New York, Michigan,
Ohio, California, Illinois, Pen­
nsylvania, Indiana, North Caro­
lina, and New Jersey.

Places of Em ploym ent

Most production painters learn
their jobs through on-the-job
training. The length of training
may vary from 2 weeks to several
months.
The new worker may have his
job duties explained to him by

About
160,000
production
painters were employed in 1968,
nearly three-quarters in manu­
facturing. Approximately 1 out
of 8 production painters was a

Train in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

Production painters apply acrylic enamel to automobile body.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

552
his supervisor and then work un­
der the guidance of an experi­
enced employee. The trainee may
observe the experienced employee
at work or assist him in his work.
A person 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 he can dis­
tinguish between colors and see
whether the paint is applied even­
ly. High school graduation is not
generally required of applicants
for these jobs.
There are some opportunities
for advancement in this field of
work. A small number of workers
have become inspectors or fore­
men.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of production
painters is expected to show little
or no change through the 1970’s.
However, several thousand job
opportunities are expected to
arise annually as workers retire,
die, or transfer to other lines of
work. Deaths and retirements
alone will result in almost 3,000
openings each year.
Employment of production
painters is expected to remain
relatively stable, primarily be­
cause of the increasing develop­
ment and use of mechanized and
automatic painting equipment.
For example, even though the
number of automobiles produced
is expected to increase substan­
tially, the greater use of auto­
matic sprayers will very likely
offset any need for additional
production painters.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Production painters generally
are paid on an hourly basis. An
examination of selected 1968 la­
bor-management contracts in the




machinery industries indicates
that production painters earned
from about $2 to $4 an hour.
Production painters are expos­
ed 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 awk­
ward and cramped positions.
Many production painters are
members of unions. Among the
labor organizations to which they
belong are the International Un­
ion, United Automobile, Aero­
space and Agricultural Imple­
ment Workers of America; the
United Furniture Workers of
America; and the United Steel­
workers of America. Many labormanagement contracts in the
plants in which these workers are
employed provide for fringe bene­
fits, such as holiday and vacation
pay, health insurance, life insur­
ance, and retirement pensions.

SHOE REPAIRMEN
(D.O.T. 365.381)

N atu re of the W ork
Shoe repairmen repair worn
heels and soles, broken straps,
and torn seams of all types of
shoes. These craftsmen also re­
style shoes by attaching orna­
ments such as buckles and bows.
Highly skilled shoe repairmen
may design, make, or repair or­
thopedic shoes in accordance with
the prescription of orthopedists
and podiatrists. They also may
mend handbags, luggage, tents,
boat covers, and other items
made of leather, rubber, or
canvas.
The most frequent tasks per­
formed by shoe repairmen are re­

placing worn heels and soles. To
resole a shoe, the repairman pre­
pares the shoe by removing the
worn sole and old stitching, and
roughing the bottom of the shoe
on a sanding wheel. Next, he se­
lects a new sole or cuts one from
a piece of leather and cements,
nails, or sews it to the shoe. Fi­
nally, he trims the sole. T o reheel
a shoe, the repairman first pries
off the old heel. He then selects
a replacement heel or cuts one to
the required shape, and cements
and nails the new heel in place.
The heel is then trimmed. After
the heels and soles have been re­
placed, the shoe repairman stains
and buffs them so that they
match the color of the shoes.
Sometimes he cements leather
tips or nails metal heels and toe
plates to the new heels and soles
to increase their durability. Be­
fore completing the job, the re­
pairman may replace the insoles,
restitch any loose seams, and pol­
ish and buff the shoes.
In large shops, shoe repair
work often is divided into a num­
ber of specialized tasks. For ex­
ample, some shoe repairmen may
remove and replace heels and
soles only; others only restitch
torn seams.
Shoe repairmen use handtools
and power and manually operated
machines in their work. For ex­
ample, they may use power oper­
ated sole stitchers and heel nailing
machines, and manually operated
sewing machines, cement presses,
and shoe stretchers. Among the
handtools they use are hammers,
awls, and nippers.
Self-emloyed shoe repairmen
have managerial, sales, and other
responsibilities in addition to
their regular duties. They make
estimates of repair costs, prepare
sales slips, keep records, and re­
ceive payments for work perform­
ed. They also may supervise the
work of other repairmen.

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

553
ienced repairmen with simple
tasks, such as staining, brushing,
and shining shoes, and progress to
more difficult duties as they gain
experience. Helpers having an ap­
titude for the work and initiative
can become qualified shoe repair­
men after 2 years of on-the-job
training.
Some repairmen learn how to
repair shoes in vocational schools
that offer such training. Others
receive their training under the
provisions of the Manpower D e­
velopment and Training Act; still
others enter the occupation
through apprenticeship training
programs.
Skilled shoe repairmen who
work in large shops can become
foremen or managers. Those who
have the necessary funds can open
their own shops.

Em ploym ent O utlook

Places of E m ploym ent
Over 60 percent of the estima­
ted 30,000 shoe repairmen em­
ployed in 1968 were proprietors
of small, one-man shoe repair
shops Most of the remaining
craftsmen were employed in large
shoe repair establishments. Many
of these large shops offered clean­
ing and laundering services in ad­
dition to shoe repairing. A few
shoe repairmen worked in shoe re­
pair departments of department
stores, variety chain stores, shoe
stores, and cleaning establish­
ments.




Almost every community in the
United States has at least one
shoe repairman. However, most
repairmen work in urban areas.
States having large numbers of
shoe repairmen include New
York, California, Pennsylvania,
Illinois, and Texas.

Train in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Most shoe repairmen are hired
as helpers and receive on-the-job
training in large shoe repair shops.
Helpers begin by assisting exper­

Employment of shoe repairmen
is expected to show little or no
change through the 1970’s. How­
ever, hundreds of job openings
will arise each year from the need
to replace experienced workers
who retire, die, or transfer to oth­
er fields of work. Retirements and
deaths alone are expected to pro­
vide nearly 1,500 job openings an­
nually. In addition, many jobs
currently are unfilled because of
a shortage of qualified shoe repair­
men. Moreover, the number of re­
pairmen currently being trained
is insufficient to fill present or
prospective job openings.
Several factors will tend to limit
the growth in requirements for
shoe repairmen. In recent years,
the popularity of canvas foot­
wear, loafers, sandals, and cush­
ion-soled shoes has increased. Be­
cause of the construction of these
types of shoes, they often cannot
be repaired. In addition, many
shoes are being made of more dur­
able, long-wearing materials and

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

554
need repair less frequently. Also,
as personal income rises, many
people buy new shoes rather than
repair old ones.
Earnings and W orking Conditions
In 1968, shoe repairmen in me­
tropolitan areas generally earned
between $90 and $100 for a 40
hour week. Some skilled repair­
men earned up to $150. Those
who were managers of shoe repair
shops earned more than $150 a
week and trainees generally earn­
ed about $65 a week.
Earnings of self-employed shoe
repairmen varied considerably,
depending on the size and location
of the shop and the owner’s mana­
gerial ability. Shoe repairmen who
operated clean, modern shops of­
ten earned more than $7,500 a
year. On the other hand, those
who owned shops in small com­
munities often earned less.
Shoe repairmen generally work
8 hours a day, 5 or 6 days a week.
The workweek for the self-em­
ployed, however, is often longer,
sometimes 10 hours a day, 6 days
a week. Although shoe repair es­
tablishments are busiest during
the spring and fall, work is steady
with no seasonal layoffs. Employ­
ees in large shops receive from 1
to 4 weeks’ paid vacation, depend­
ing on the length of time employ­
ed. Usually, at least 6 paid holi­
days a year are provided.
Working conditions in large re­
pair shops, shoe repair depart­
ments of shoe stores and depart­
ment stores, and in the more mod­
em shoe service stores are gener­
ally good. However, some repair
shops may be crowded and noisy
and have poor light or ventilation.
Strong odors from leather goods,
dyes, and stains may be present.
Shoe repair work is not stren­
uous, but does require physical
stamina, since shoe repairmen
must stand a good deal of the
time.




Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Information on training and
other aspects of the trade may be
obtained from:
Shoe Service Institute of America,
222 West Adams St., Chicago,
11 . 60606.
1

Information about local work
opportunities and manpower de­
velopment and training programs
can be obtained from local offices
of the State employment service.

STATIONARY ENGINEERS
(D.O.T. 950.782)

N atu re of the W ork
Stationary engineers operate
and maintain equipment in indus­
trial plants and other buildings
that is essential to power gener­
ation, heating, ventilation, humid­
ity control, and air conditioning.
These workers are needed whereever steam boilers, diesel and
steam engines, refrigeration and
air-conditioning machines, gener­
ators, motors, turbines, pumps,
compressors, and similar equip­
ment are used. They must operate
and maintain the equipment ac­
cording to State and local laws,
since the safety of many people
depends upon its proper function­
ing.
The most important duty of
stationary engineers is to make
certain that the equipment for
which they are responsible is op­
erating properly. They must de­
tect and identify any trouble that
develops by analyzing their read­
ings of meters, gages, and other
monitoring instruments, and by
watching and listening to the ma­
chinery. They operate levers,
throttles, switches, valves, and

Stationary engineer takes reading.

other devices to regulate and con­
trol the machinery so that it
works efficiently. They also record
such information as the amount of
fuel used, the temperature and
pressure of boilers, the number
and pieces of equipment in use,
and any repairs that are made.
Stationary engineers usually re­
pair the equipment they operate,
using handtools of all kinds, in­
cluding precision tools. Common
repairs involve reseating valves;
replacing gaskets, pumps, pack­
ings, bearings, and belting; and
adjusting piston clearance. Oc­
casionally, stationary engineers
make mechanical changes so that
the equipment will operate more
efficiently or conform to the re­
quirements of a different process.
The duties of stationary engi­
neers depend on the size of the es­
tablishment in which they work
and the type and capacity of the
machinery for which they are re­
sponsible. However, their primary

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

responsibilities are very much the
same for all kinds of plants— safe
and efficient operation of their equipment. In a large plant, the
chief stationary engineer may
have charge of the entire opera­
tion of the boilerroom and direct
the work of assistant stationary
engineers and other employees,
including turbine operators, boiler
operators, and air-conditioning
and refrigeration mechanics. As­
sistant stationary engineers may
be responsible for the operation
of all the equipment during a shift
or they may be in charge of a
specific type of machinery such
as air-conditioning equipment. In
relatively small establishments,
stationary engineers may be re­
sponsible for the operation and
maintenance of all mechanical
and electrical equipment.
Places of E m ploym ent
In 1968, more than 260,000 sta­
tionary engineers were employed
in a wide variety of establish­
ments, such as power stations, fac­
tories, breweries, food-processing
plants, steel mills, sewage and
water-treatment plants, office and
apartment buildings, hotels and
hospitals. Federal, State, and lo­
cal governments also employed
large numbers of these workers.
The size of establishments in
which the engineers worked
ranged from giant hydroelectric
plants and large public buildings
to small industrial plants. Most
plants which operate on three
shifts employ from 4 to 8 station­
ary engineers, but some have as
many as 60. In many establish­
ments, only one engineer works on
each shift.
Because stationary engineers
work in so many different kinds
of 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




555

This on-the-job training is sup­
plemented by classroom instruc­
tion and home study in such re­
lated technical subjects as prac­
tical chemistry, elementary phy­
sics, blueprint reading, applied
electricity, and theories of refrig­
eration, air conditioning, ventila­
tion, and heating.
Persons who become stationary
Training , O ther Q ualifications,
engineers without going through
and A dvancem ent
a formal apprenticeship program
Many stationary engineers start usually do so only after many
as helpers or craftsmen in other years of experience as assistants
trades and acquire their skills to licensed stationary engineers
largely through informal on-the- in such occupations as boiler, re­
job experience. However, most frigeration, or turbine operator.
training authorities recommend This practical experience usually
formal apprenticeship as the best is supplemented by technical or
way to learn this trade because other school training or home
of the increasing complexity of the study.
Eight States, the District of
machines and systems.
In selecting apprentices, most Columbia, and more than 50 large
joint labor-management appren­ and medium-size cities have li­
ticeship committees prefer high censing requirements for station­
school or trade school graduates ary engineers. Although require­
between 18 and 25 years of age ments for obtaining a license dif­
who have received instruction in fer from place to place, the fol­
such subjects as algebra, geom­ lowing are typical: (1) The ap­
etry, trigonometry, shop mathe­ plicant must be over 21 years of
matics, mechanical drawing, ma­ age; (2) he must have resided in
chine-shop practice, physics, and the State or locality in which the
chemistry. Mechanical aptitude, examination is given for a speci­
manual dexterity, and good phy­ fied period of time; and (3) he
sical condition also are important must demonstrate that he meets
the experience requirements for
qualifications.
A stationary engineer appren­ the class of license requested. A
ticeship customarily lasts 3 to 4 license is issued to applicants who
years. Through on-the-job train­ meet these requirements and pass
ing, the apprentice learns to op­ an examination which may be
erate, maintain, and repair sta­ written, oral, or a combination
tionary equipment, such as blow­ of both types.
Generally, there are several
ers, generators, compressors, boil­
ers, motors, and air-conditioning classes of stationary engineer li­
and refrigeration machinery. He is censes, which specify the steam
taught how to use a variety of pressure or horsepower of the ehand and machine tools, such as quipment the engineer may oper­
chisels, hammers, electric grind­ ate. The first-class license permits
ers, lathes, and drill presses. He the stationary engineer to operate
also learns to use precision-meas­ equipment of all types and capa­
uring instruments, such as cali­ cities without restriction. The
pers and micrometers. In addition, lower class licenses limit the capa­
he may be taught how to move city of the equipment the engineer
machinery by the use of blocks, may operate. However, engineers
chain hoists, or other equipment. having lower class licenses may

heavily populated areas where
large industrial and commercial
establishments are located. New
York, Texas, California, Illinois,
Pennsylvania, Ohio, New Jersey,
and Michigan employ well over
half of these workers.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

556
operate equipment other than
their license class, provided they
are under the supervision of a
higher rated engineer— usually
one having a first-class license.
Stationary engineers advance
to more responsible jobs by being
placed in charge of larger, more
powerful, or more varied equip­
ment. Generally, the engineer ad­
vances to these jobs as he obtains
higher grade licenses. Advance­
ment, however, is not automatic.
For example, an engineer having
a first-class license may work for
some time as an assistant to an­
other first-class engineer before a
vacancy requiring a first-class li­
censed engineer occurs. In gener­
al, the broader his knowledge of
the operation, maintenance, and
repair of various types of equip­
ment, the better are his chances
for advancement. Stationary en­
gineers also may advance to jobs
as plant engineers and as building
and plant superintendents.

E m ploym ent O utlook
Employment of stationary en­
gineers is expected to grow slowly
through the 1970’s. In addition,
an average of about 6,000 new
workers will be required each year
to replace workers who retire or
die. Promotions and transfers to
other fields of work also will create
job openings.
A rise in employment of station­
ary engineers is expected main­
ly because of the continuing in­
crease in the use of large station­
ary boilers and refrigeration and
air-conditioning equipment in fac­
tories, powerplants, and other
buildings. Job opportunities may
arise because of the continued
growth of pipeline transportation
and saline water conversion. How­
ever, improved efficiency from
more powerful, automatic, and
more centralized equipment and
better utilization of workers may




limit the growth in the employ­
ment of these workers.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
According to a number of unionmanagement contracts in effect in
1969 covering brewery, laundry,
hotel, bakery, printing and other
industries located in 20 States
and the District of Columbia, the
average straight-time hourly rate
for stationary engineers was ap­
proximately $3.90. Stationary en­
gineers in charge of large boilerroom operations often earn con­
siderably more than the average
straight-time hourly rate; some
earn more than $200 a week.
Stationary engineers generally
have steady year-round employ­
ment. They usually work a
straight 8-hour day and 40 hours
a week. In plants or institutions
that operate around the clock,
they may be assigned to any one
of three shifts— often on a rotat­
ing basis— and to Sunday and
holiday work.
Many stationary engineers are
employed in plants which have
union-employer contracts. Most of
these contracts provide fringe
benefits, which may include hos­
pitalization, medical and surgical
insurance; life insurance; sickness
and accident insurance; and re­
tirement pensions. Similar bene­
fits also may be provided in plants
which do not have union-employer
contracts. Among the unions to
which these workers belong are
the International Union of Oper­
ating Engineers and the Interna­
tional Union; United Automobile,
Aerospace and Agricultural Im­
plement Workers of America.
Most engine rooms, powerplants, or boilerrooms where sta­
tionary engineers work are clean
and well-lighted. However, even
under the most favorable condi­
tions, 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 main­
tenance 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 equip­
ment, they must be alert to avoid
bums, electric shock, and injury
from moving machinery. If the
equipment is defective or is not
operated correctly, it may be haz­
ardous to them and to other per­
sons in the vicinity.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Information about training or
work opportunities in this trade
may be obtained from local offices
of State employment services, lo­
cals of the International Union of
Operating Engineers, and from
State and local licensing agencies.
Information about the occupa­
tion also may be obtained from:
International Union of Operating
Engineers, 1125 17th St., NW.,
Washington, D.C. 20036.
National Association of Power En­
gineers, Inc., 176 West Adam
St., Chicago, 1 1 60603.
1.

STATIONARY FIREMEN
(BOILER)
(D.O.T. 951.885)

N ature of the W ork
Stationary firemen are semi­
skilled workers who operate and
maintain steam boilers used to
power industrial machinery, and
to heat factories. Some experi­
enced stationary firemen may be
responsible for inspecting boiler

557

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

equipment, for lighting boilers,
and building up steam pressure.
On the other hand, the responsi­
bilities of some stationary firemen
may be limited to maintaining equipment in good working order
by cleaning, oiling, and greasing
moving machinery parts.
In most plants, stationary fire­
men operate mechanical devices
that control the flow of air, gas,
oil, or powdered coal into the fire­
box in order to keep proper steam
pressures in the boilers. Duties of
these workers may include read­
ing meters and other instruments
to be certain that the boilers are
operating efficiently and according
to safety regulations.
Fully qualified stationary fire­
men should be able to detect mal­
functions without relying entirely
on safety devices. In some plants,
stationary firemen may be expec­
ted to know how to make minor
repairs. Stationary firemen often
are supervised by stationary en­
gineers. (The stationary engineer
is a skilled worker who is respon­
sible for the operation and main-

tenance of a variety of equipment,
including boilers, diesel and steam
engines, and refrigeration and airconditioning
equipment.
See
statement on Stationary Engi­
neers.)

Places of Em ploym ent
About 73,000 stationary fire­
men were employed in 1968, more
than one-half in manufacturing.
Generally, these workers are em­
ployed in industries which are
large users of power generating
equipment. Leading industries in
the employment of stationary
firemen are lumber, food, iron and
steel, paper, chemicals, and trans­
portation equipment.
Because stationary firemen
work in so many different indus­
tries, 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, Michigan, New Jersey,
and California accounted for
about 45 percent of the total num­
ber of firemen.
Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

stationary fireman opens vaive in
gas line to burner.




Some large cities and a few
States require stationary firemen
to be licensed. Applicants can ob­
tain the knowledge and experi­
ence to pass the license examina­
tion by first working as a helper
in a boilerroom, or working as a
stationary fireman under a con­
ditional license.
License requirements differ
from city to city and from State
to State. However, the applicant
usually must prove that he meets
the experience requirements for
the license and pass an examina­

tion testing his knowledge of the
job. For specific information on
licensing requirements, consult
your State or local licensing au­
thorities.
There are two types of station­
ary firemen licenses— for low and
high pressure boilers. Low pres­
sure firemen operate low pressure
boilers generally used for heat­
ing. High pressure firemen oper­
ate the more powerful high pres­
sure boilers and auxiliary boiler
equipment used to power ma­
chinery and equipment in addi­
tion to heating buildings. Both
high and low pressure operators,
however, may operate equipment
of any pressure class, provided a
stationary engineer is on duty.
Stationary firemen should un­
derstand the operation of ma­
chinery and must have normal
vision and good hearing. (Be­
cause of the mechanization of
equipment, physical strength is
no longer a major requirement
for this type of work.)
Stationary firemen may ad­
vance to jobs as stationary engi­
neers. To become stationary en­
gineers, firemen sometimes sup­
plement their on-the-job training
by taking courses in subjects such
as practical chemistry; elemen­
tary physics; blueprint reading;
applied electricity; and theory of
refrigeration, air conditioning,
ventilation, and heating. Station­
ary firemen also may advance to
jobs as maintenance mechanics.

E m ploym ent O utlook
Employment of stationary fire­
men is expected to decline mod­
erately through the 1970’s. Many
hundreds of openings for new
workers, however, will result each
year from the need to replace
workers who transfer to other
fields of work, retire, or die.
Although an increase in the use
of stationary boilers and auxili-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

558
ary equipment is expected dur­
ing the next 10 to 15 years, the
trend to automatic, more power­
ful, and more centralized equip­
ment is expected to result in a
decline in employment of station­
ary firemen. In large plants, how­
ever, where turbines and engines
are housed under a separate roof
and where there is a need for con­
stant surveillance of boilers, fire­
men will continue to be needed.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
In 1967, stationary firemen in
manufacturing plants located in
85 metropolitan areas across the
country had average straighttime hourly earnings of $2.90.
Average hourly earnings in these
areas ranged from about $1.71 in
Little Rock, Ark., to $3.68 in
Detroit, Mich.
Most stationary firemen, even
under the most favorable condi­
tions, are at times exposed to
noise, high temperatures, 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 kneel­
ing position.
Stationary firemen are subject
to bums, falls, and injury from
moving machinery. Boilers and
auxiliary equipment that are not
operated correctly, or are defec­
tive, may be dangerous to these
workers and to other persons in
the work vicinity. However, mod­
ern equipment and safety pro­
cedures have reduced accidents
considerably in recent years.
Many stationary firemen are
employed in plants that have la­
bor-management contracts, most
of which provide benefits that
may include paid holidays and
vacations, hospitalization, medi­
cal and surgical insurance, sick­
ness and accident insurance, and




retirement pensions. Among the
unions to which these workers
belong are the International
Brotherhood of Firemen and Oil­
ers and the International Union
of Operating Engineers.

WASTE WATER TREATMENT
P U N T OPERATORS
(SEWAGE-PUNT
OPERATOR)
(D.O.T. 955.782)

N ature of the W ork
Clean water is essential for the
health and recreational enjoy­
ment of the population and for
the existence of fish and other
wildlife. Waste water treatment
plant operators work to secure
America’s water resources by
eliminating water p o l l u t i o n
through the removal of domestic
and industrial waste from water.
Domestic and industrial waste
is carried by water through sew­
ers and arrives at treatment
plants in a diluted state. Where
storm sewers flow through waste
water treatment plants, nonorganic matter in the form of
sticks, boards, sand, rags, and grit
also is present. The primary task
of waste water treatment plant
operators is to supervise the op­
eration and control of equipment
and facilities designed to remove
these materials or render them
harmless to human, animal, and
fish life. Operators test and cor­
rect the level of chlorine and
oxygen in the water to assure
maximum efficiency in the elimi­
nation of harmful bacteria that
is responsible for most water pol­
lution. Operators also must pre­
vent the concentration of sludge
(solid waste) at the bottom of
water treatment tanks (sedimen­

tation tanks). By operating
pumps and opening and closing
valves that connect a system of
pipes to the sedimentation tanks,
operators remove excess sludge.
Operators
perform
routine
tasks according to a regular
schedule. These routine tasks in­
clude reading meters and gages
and entering the information on
log sheets. For example, an op­
erator may monitor meters that
record the volume of flow of
waste water (sewage) into a
plant or he may read gages that
measure the level of water in a
well and provide information
needed to ascertain normal pump
action. Other tasks may include
operating screening devices for
removing sand, gravel, and larger
objects; making minor repairs on
valves, pumps, and other equip­
ment; opening and closing of
valves; and sampling waste water
at various stages of treatment for
laboratory analysis. Operators
also may paint pipes and equip­
ment and hose down walls and
tanks to breakup scum and
sludge. In the performance of
their duties, operators may be
required to use wrenches, pliers,
hammers, and other hand tools.
Operators occasionally must
work under emergency conditions
— for example, a pump may
breakdown due to a violent storm
and suddenly increase the flow
of sewage and storm water into
a plant. Under these circum­
stances, an operator may have to
make emergency repairs or, at
the very least, be able to locate
the source of trouble, disengage
the defective mechanism, and re­
port the malfunction to a fore­
man or supervisor.
The range of duties of an op­
erator depend largely on the size
of the treatment plant. In smaller
plants, the operator may have
sole responsibility for the entire
system, including making repairs
on equipment, filling out forms,

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

559

to work under the direction of an
operator. They learn by helping
in routine tasks, such as record­
ing meter readings; taking sam­
ples of waste water and sludge;
and doing simple maintenance
and repair work on pumps, elec­
tric motors, valves, and pipes.
They also are expected to per­
form housekeeping tasks such as
cleaning and maintaining plant
equipment and property.
Young people who are inter­
ested in obtaining an entry posi­
tion in the field should have
some mechanical aptitude and be
able to perform simple arithmetic
calculations. Most municipalities
accept men with less than a high
school education, however, in a
number of large municipalities—
particularly those having formal
civil service structures— appli­
cants generally must have a high
school diploma or its equivalent.
Some treatment operators, par­
ticularly in larger municipalities,
are covered by civil service regu­
lations, and applicants may be
required to pass written exami­
nations
covering
elementary
Waste water treatment plant operator enters readings on record sheet.
mathematics, mechanical apti­
and handling complaints, as well plants, and 20,000 were employed tude, and general intelligence.
as patrolling and housekeeping in municipal plants throughout Operators must be agile, since
they have to be able to climb up
duties such as cleaning the plant the Nation.
The geographical distribution and down ladders and move easily
and cutting grass. Since many
small plants are semiautomatic, of treatment plants parallels the around heavy machinery and
frequently a single or part-time population pattern of the United equipment.
Most State water pollution
operator only is required. In States. About one-half of all
larger plants, the staff may in­ waste water treatment plant op­ control agencies offer some short
clude helpers, foremen, and chief erators worked in the following term course training to improve
operators. The responsibilities of 8 states: California, New York, the skills of water treatment
these workers range from those Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tex­ plant operators. These courses
of helpers, who perform primar­ as, Florida, and New Jersey.
cover subjects such as principles
of digestion, odors and their con­
ily housekeeping duties, to those
trol, chlorination, sedimentation,
of chief operators who supervise
Train in g , O ther Q ualifications,
biological oxidation, and flow
the entire operation.
and A dvancem ent
measurements. In some cases, op­
erators take advantage of corre­
Places of Em ploym ent
Entry jobs generally do not spondence courses on subjects re­
There were approximately 23,- require specific training, and lated to waste water treatment.
500 waste water treatment plant most operators learn their skills Some large municipalities will
operators in 1968— about 3,500 through informal on-the-job ex­ pay part of the tuition for courses
of these operators worked in in­ perience. New workers usually leading to a college degree in sci­
dustrial waste liquid treatment start as helpers and are assigned ence or engineering.




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

560
Operators having experience
and on-the-job training may be
promoted to levels of more re­
sponsibility such as foremen and
chief operators. The extent of
educational and on-the-job ex­
perience required for advance­
ment varies considerably, de­
pending primarily on the size of
the waste water treatment plant.
Chief operators of large and com­
plex plants, for example, may be
expected to have a bachelor’s
degree in science or engineering.
On the other hand, a high school
diploma or its equivalent, and
successively responsible experi­
ence is usually sufficient to quali­
fy as chief operator of a small or
medium-sized plant. A limited
number of operators may become
technicians employed by local or
State water pollution control
agencies or consulting engineers.
These technicians are employed
in a variety of tasks, including
the collection and preparation of
water and biological samples for
laboratory examinations. Some
technical-vocational school or
junior college training is gener­
ally preferred for technician jobs.
All but 5 of the 50 States have
certification programs that issue
qualification standards for oper­
ators. By certifying operators on
the basis of demonstrated profi­
ciency, these programs are de­
signed to improve treatment
plant operations and raise em­
ployee stature. Sixteen States
(Delaware,
Illinois,
Indiana,
Iowa, Kentucky, M a r y l a n d ,
Michigan, Montana, New Hamp­
shire, New Jersey, New York,
Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, West
Virginia, and Wisconsin) have
adopted mandatory certification
laws providing for the examina­
tion of operators and certifica­
tion of their competence to su­
pervise the operation of treat­
ment plants. In addition to re­
quiring the certification of super­
visory operators, these States en­




courage other operators to be­
come certified. Voluntary certi­
fication programs are in effect in
29 States, and municipalites in
these States are urged to employ
certified operators.
Under a typical licensing pro­
gram, there are four classes of
certification that relate as near­
ly as possible to corresponding
classifications for waste water
treatment plants. For example,
to be certified a Class I operator
(corresponding to a Class I plant­
serving a population of less than
2,000), an applicant may be re­
quired to demonstrate general
knowledge of treatment opera­
tions by passing a written exami­
nation, be a high school graduate,
and have completed 1 year of ac­
ceptable employment at a treat­
ment plant. Requirements for
certification as a Class IV oper­
ator (corresponding to a Class
IV plant-serving a population in
excess of 40,000) may be a col­
lege degree or completion of 2
years of college in science or en­
gineering; 5 years of treatment
plant experience at a Class III
plant or higher, 2 years of which
were in a position of major re­
sponsibility; and specific knowl­
edge of the entire field of waste
water treatment as demonstrated
through a written examination.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of operators is
expected to rise rapidly through
the 1970’s, mainly as a result of
the construction of new treat­
ment plants to manage the in­
creasing amount of domestic and
industry waste water. Employ­
ment growth also should result
from expansion of existing plants
to include secondary treatment
operators to cope more effective­
ly with water pollution. In addi­
tion to the new jobs that will
result from growth, approximate­

ly 1,100 job openings are ex­
pected each year due to death
and retirement of experienced
workers.
The construction of larger and
more complex municipal and in­
dustrial treatment plants and the
consolidation of smaller plants
is expected to increase through
the 1970’s. In 1968, about 4 out
of 5 communities having sewer
systems had waste water treat­
ment plants. By 1980, it is ex­
pected that almost all communi­
ties will provide for the treat­
ment of waste water. A larger
proportion of small plants are
expected to use full-time oper­
ators as a result of increases in
the quantity of waste water from
population and industrial growth.
Earnings and W orking Conditions
Earnings of operators in small
plants ranged from $3,600 to
$8,500 per year in 1968; in large
treatment plants earnings were
higher. Foremen earned up to
$9,000 per year and chief oper­
ators as much as $14,000. Sala­
ries for trainees were roughly 80
percent of the operators’ salaries
in most cities. These data reflect
information collected from a
number of municipalities in vari­
ous parts of the United States.
Fringe benefits provided for
plant operators
usually
are
similar to those received by other
municipal civil service employees.
Many operators receive paid va­
cations and holidays, overtime,
shift differential pay, sick leave,
paid life insurance, paid hospi­
talization, and retirement bene­
fits.
Because pollution control is a
continuous operation, operators
work in different shifts and in
event of an emergency may have
to work overtime. When working
outdoors, operators are exposed
to all kinds of weather. Operators

561

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

also may be exposed to unpleas­
ant odors and toxic conditions,
dust, and fumes in the atmo­
sphere, as well as noise from the
operation of electrical motors,
pumps, and gas engines. How­
ever, odor is kept to a minimum
by the use of chlorine. Many
plants are modern buildings that
have good lighting, clean wash­
rooms equipped with showers,
and a room set aside for the com­
fort of the operator. The site is
usually landscaped with well
groomed lawns and shrubbery.
For the most part, the pipes and
sludge digestion tanks are be­
neath the ground or covered.
Young people interested in a
career in water treatment should
contact their local or State water
pollution control agencies. Addi­
tional information may be ob­
tained from:
Water Pollution Control Federa­
tion, 3900 Wisconsin Ave., NW.,
Washington, D.C. 20016
Office of Manpower and Training
Federal Water Pollution Control
Administration, Department of
the Interior, 633 Indiana Ave.,
NW., Washington, D.C. 20242.

other products are joined by this
process. Structural metal used in
the construction of bridges, build­
ings, storage tanks, and other
structures is often welded. Weld­
ing also is used widely to repair
broken metal parts.
Welding is a method of joining
pieces of metal by applying heat,
pressure, or both, with or with­
out filler metal, to produce a
permanent bond. Although there
are more than 40 different weld­
ing processses, most of the proc­
esses fall under three basic cate­
gories: arc, gas, and resistance
welding. Arc and gas welding can
be performed manually or by ma­
chine. Resistance welding is
mainly a machine process.
Closely related to welding is
oxygen and arc cutting (often re­
ferred to as flame cutting). Oxy­
gen and arc cutters cut or trim
metal objects to a desired size or
shape. They also remove excess
metal from castings and cut scrap
metal into pieces of manageable
size.

Most manual welding is done
by arc welders, gas welders, and
combination welders who do both
arc and gas welding. Manual
welders may be either skilled or
semiskilled. The skilled, all-round
manual welder is able to plan
and lay out work from drawings,
blueprints, or other written speci­
fications. He has a knowledge of
the welding properties of steel,
stainless steel, cast iron, bronze,
aluminum, nickel, and other met­
als and alloys with which he may
be required to work. He also is
able to determine the proper se­
quence of work operations for
each job and to weld all types of
joints held in various positions
(flat, vertical, horizontal, and
overhead). The semiskilled man­
ual welder usually performs re­
petitive work; that is, production
work which, more often than not,
does not involve critical safety
and strength requirements. The
surfaces welded by him are pri­
marily in only one position.

Consumer Protection and Envi­
ronmental Health Services, De­
partment of Health, Education,
and Welfare, 200 C St., SW.,
Washington, D.C. 20204.

WELDERS AND OXYGEN
AND ARC CUTTERS
(D.O.T. 810. through 819.887)

N atu re of the W ork
Welding is one of the most
common and dependable methods
of joining metal parts. Many of
the parts used in the manufacture
of automobiles, missiles and
spacecrafts, airplanes, household
appliances, and thousands of




Welder strikes arc with electrode.

562
The principal duty of the weld­
er using the manual technique
is to control the melting of the
metal edges by directing heat to
the edges, 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 manual arc welding proc­
esses, the welder obtains a suit­
able electrode and adjusts the
electric current. The welder first
“ strikes” an arc (creates an elec­
tric 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 edges to be weld­
ed. The intense heat caused by
the arc melts the edges and the
electrode tip. The molten metal
from the electrode is deposited
in the joint and, with the molten
metal edges, solidifies to form
a solid connection. During the
past two decades, there has been
a considerable increase in the
use of arc-welding processes that
employ inert gas for shielding the
weld area. This type of welding
was developed for joining hardto-weld metals, such as alumi­
num, magnesium, stainless steel,
and titanium, and is now usable
with plain carbon steel. Many
welders now specialize in this
process.
In the late 1950’s, the semiau­
tomatic C 0 2 gas shielded welding
processes were developed. These
processes feed a continuous elec­
trode wire into the arc and the
gun may be guided by the oper­
ator or may be fully automated.
The fine wire C 0 2 process has
almost no spatter or slag and is
an all position method. The large
wire C 0 2 process has a high de­
position rate and is very good for
fully automatic applications. In
addition, the flux cored arc weld­
ing procedure has the double ad­
vantage of special flux com­
pounds in the center of the wire




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

and also the C 0 2 gas shielding.
Flux cored wire is also available
which requires no external shield­
ing gas. All the necessary fluxing
ingredients are contained inside
the center core. Before consider­
ing himself up-to-date, a welder
should be able to use the semi­
automatic welding processes.
In gas welding, the welder uses
a gas welding torch to apply an
intensely hot flame (obtained
from the combustion of a mixture
of fuel gas— most commonly
acetylene and oxygen) to the
metal edges. After the welder ob­
tains the proper types of welding
rods and welding torch tips and
adjusts the regulators on the
oxygen and acetylene cylinders,
he lights his welding torch. He
then adjusts the oxygen and
acetylene valves on the torch to
obtain the proper size and qual­
ity 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 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.
In production processes, es­
pecially where the work is re­
petitive and the items to be
welded are relatively uniform,
the welding may be done by semi­
skilled workers who operate
welding machines. In resistance
welding, the most common type
of machine welding, resistance
welding operators (D.O.T. 813.885) feed and aline the work and
remove it after the welding oper­
ation is completed. Occasionally,
they may adjust the controls of
the machine for the desired elec­
tric current and pressure.
Workers other than welders
frequently use welding in their
work. In the construction indus­
try, for example, the structural
steel worker, plumber and pipe­

fitter, and sheet-metal worker
may at times do manual arc and
gas welding. Also, maintenance
and repair work provide many
welding opportunities for other
metalworking and related occu­
pations. (See Index for individ­
ual statements on these occupa­
tions.)
Semiskilled
oxygen cutters
(D.O.T. 816.782 and .884) and
arc cutters (D.O.T. 816.884),
sometimes called flame or ther­
mal cutters, usually use handguided torches to cut or trim
metals. In the oxygen-cutting
process, for example, the oxygen
cutter directs a flame of fuel gas
burning with oxygen on the area
to be cut until the metal begins
to melt. He then releases an addi­
tional stream of oxygen which
cuts the metal. The oxygen cut­
ter prepares for the cutting job
by attaching the proper torch tip
for the particular job, connecting
the torch to the gas and oxygen
hoses, and regulating the flow of
gases into the torch for the de­
sired cutting flame. He then cuts
through the metal, manually
guiding the torch along previous­
ly marked lines or following a
pattern. He may mark guidelines
on the metal by following blue­
prints or other instructions. Arc
cutting differs from oxygen cut­
ting because an electric arc is
used as the source of heat. How­
ever, as in oxygen cutting, an
additional stream of gas may be
released in cutting the metal. An
arc with a hollow electrode
through which oxygen passes is
used in underwater cutting.
Other special forms of the arc,
such as the plasma arc, are used
for cutting ferrous and nonferrous
metals.
Oxygen and arc cutters also
may operate a torch or torches
mounted on an electrically or
mechanically controlled machine

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

which by electrical or mechanical
control automatically follows the
proper guideline.

Places of Em ploym ent
In 1968, an estimated 480,000
welders and oxygen and arc cut­
ters were employed throughout
the country. About 360,000 of
these workers were employed in
manufacturing industries. Their
main employers were firms manu­
facturing durable goods, such as
transportation equipment, fabri­
cated metal products, machinery,
primary metals, and electrical
machinery. Of the approximately
120,000 welders and cutters em­
ployed in other industries, the
greatest number were found in
construction firms and establish­
ments performing miscellaneous
repair services; the remainder
were widely scattered among
other nonmanufacturing indus­
tries.
The widespread use of the
welding and cutting processes in
industry enables welders and cut­
ters to find jobs in every State.
Most of these jobs, however, are
found in the major metalworking
areas. Slightly more than 50 per­
cent of the jobs were concen­
trated in seven States— Pennsyl­
vania, California, Ohio, Michigan,
Illinois, Texas, and New York.
Large numbers of welders and
cutters are employed in Detroit,
Chicago, Philadelphia, Los An­
geles, and other important metal­
working centers.

T rain in g , O th er Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Generally, it takes several
years of training to become a
skilled manual arc or gas welder,
and somewhat longer to become




a combination welder (an in­
dividual skilled in both arc and
gas welding). Some skilled jobs
may require a knowledge of blue­
print reading, welding symbols,
metal properties, and electricity.
Some of the less skilled jobs, how­
ever, can be learned after a few
months of on-the-job training.
Training requirements for the
resistance-welding machine oper­
ator’s job depend upon the par­
ticular type of equipment used;
most of these operators learn
their work in a few weeks. Little
skill is required for most oxygen
and arc-cutting jobs; 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 dex­
terity, a steady hand, good eyehand coordination, and good eye­
sight. For entry in manual weld­
ing jobs, most employers prefer
to hire young men who have high
school or vocational school train­
ing in welding methods. Courses
in mathematics, physics, me­
chanical drawing, and blueprint
reading also are valuable.
A formal apprenticeship gen­
erally is not required for manual
welders. However, a few large
companies (for example, automo­
bile manufacturers) offer appren­
ticeship programs that run as
long as 8,000 hours for the weld­
ing occupations. Also, the U.S.
Department of the Navy, at sev­
eral of its installations, conducts
4-year welding apprenticeship
programs for its civilian em­
ployees.
Programs to train unemployed
and underemployed workers for
entry level welding jobs or to up­
grade welding skill requirements

563
have been operating in many cit­
ies throughout the United States
since 1962, under the provisions
of the Manpower Development
and Training Act. The training,
which may be in the classroom or
on-the-job and last from several
weeks up to 1 year, stresses the
fundamentals of welding. Addi­
tional work experience and fur­
ther on-the-job training may
qualify graduates of M D TA pro­
jects as skilled welders in a rela­
tively short time.
Young persons entering the
welding trade often start in sim­
ple manual welding production
jobs where the type and thickness
of metal, as well as the position of
the welding operation, rarely
change. Occasionally, they are
first given jobs as oxygen or arc
cutters; they later move into
manual welding jobs. Some large
companies employ general help­
ers in maintenance jobs who, if
they show promise, may be given
opportunities to become welders
by serving as helpers to experi­
enced welders and learning the
skills of the trade on the job.
Before being assigned to work
where the strength of the weld is
a highly critical factor, welders
may be required to pass a quali­
fying examination. The test may
be given by an employer, a mu­
nicipal agency, a private agency
designated by local government
inspection authorities, or a naval
facility. Certification tests also
are given to welders on some con­
struction jobs or to those who
may be engaged in the fabrica­
tion or repair of steam or other
pressure vessels where critical
safety factors are involved. In ad­
dition to certification, some lo­
calities require welders to obtain
a license before they can do cer­
tain tvnes of outside construction
work. New develonments in some
manufacturing industries are in-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

564
creasing the skill requirements of
welders. This is particularly true
in fields such as atomic energy
or missile manufacture, which
have high standards for the re­
liability of welds and require
more precise work.
After 2 years’ training at a vo­
cational school or technical insti­
tute, the skilled welder may
qualify as a welding technician.
Generally, workers in this small
but growing occupation interpret
the engineers’ plans and instruc­
tions. Occasionally, welders may
be promoted to jobs as inspectors,
where they check welds for gen­
eral conformance with specifica­
tions and for quality of workman­
ship. Welders also may become
foremen who supervise the work
of other welders. A small num­
ber of experienced welders estab­
lish their own welding and repair
shops.

E m ploym ent O utlook
The number of welding jobs is
expected to increase rapidly
through the 1970’s as a result of
the generally favorable longrun
outlook for metalworking indus­
tries and the wider use of the
welding process. In addition to
jobs created by employment
growth, about 7,000 job openings
will occur each year because of
vacancies resulting- from retire­
ments and deaths. Opportunities
also will result as some welders
transfer to other lines of work.
Many more manual welders
will be needed for maintenance
and repair work in the growing
metalworking industries. The
number of manual welders en­
gaged in production work is ex­
pected to increase in plants man­
ufacturing structural-metal prod­
ucts, such as metal doors, boilers,
storage tanks, and sheet-metal




Welder operates CO 2 gas shielded welding equipment.

products. The construction in­
dustry will need an increasing
number of welders as the use of
welded steel structure expands.
Employment prospects for re­
sistance welders are expected to
continue to be favorable because
of the increased use of the ma­
chine resistance-welding process
in activities such as the manufac­
ture of motor vehicles, aircraft
and missiles, and the production
of light, streamlined railroad cars.
The use of faster and more high­
ly automatic welding machines,
however, will slow down the
growth in the number of these
welders.

The number of jobs for oxygen
and arc cutters is expected to rise
somewhat during the years ahead
as the result of the general ex­
pansion of metalworking activity.
The increased use of oxygen- and
arc-cutting machines, however,
will tend to restrict the growth
of this occupation.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
The earnings a welder can ex­
pect depend to a great extent on
the skill requirements of his job
and on the industry or activity in
which he is employed. Earnings

SOME OTHER MANUAL OCCUPATIONS

of highly skilled manual welders
generally compare favorably with
those of other skilled metalwork­
ing occupations. Machine weld­
ers, such as resistance welders,
who require little training, gen­
erally earn less than skilled man­
ual welders.
Average straight-time hourly
earnings for skilled and semi­
skilled welders in machinery man­
ufacturing industries in 21 cities
and metropolitan areas in late1968 appear in the accompanying
tabulation. In about three-fourths
of the cities, average hourly earn­
ings for skilled welders were $3.50
or more. Welders who are cov­
ered by union contracts may
earn considerably more than
these average earnings.
City

Rate per hour
Skilled
Semiskilled
welder
welder

Baltimore ................ $3.50
Boston ...................... 3.21
Buffalo .................... 3.64
Chicago .................... 3.75
Cleveland ................ 3.39
Dallas ...................... 2.98
Denver...................... 3.43
Detroit...................... 3.92
Hartford-New
Britain-Bristol ..... 3.74
Houston .................. 3.54
Los Angeles-Long
Beach and
Anaheim-Santa
3.63
Ana-Garden Grove 3.70
Milwaukee .............. 3.44
Minneapolis-St. Paul
Newark and
Jersey City .......... 3.72
New York................ 3.69
Philadelphia .......... 3.55
Pittsburgh................ 3.57
Portland .................. 3.99
St. Louis .................. 3.98
San FranciscoOakland................ 4.17
Worcester ................ 3.55

$3.00
3.25
3.81
3.38
2.59
3.11
3.43
2.88
3.04
3.08
3.51
3.01
3.34
2.74
3.15
2.97
3.50
3.24

Many welders and cutters are
union members. Among the labor
organizations which i n c l u d e
welders and cutters in their mem­




bership are the International As­
sociation of Machinists and Aero­
space Workers; the International
Brotherhood of Boilermakers,
Iron Shipbuilders, Blacksmiths,
Forgers and Helpers; the Inter­
national Union, United Automo­
bile, Aerospace and Agricultural
Implement Workers of America;
the United Assocation of Jour­
neymen and Apprentices of the
Plumbing and Pipe Fitting In­
dustry of the United States and
Canada; and the United Electri­
cal, Radio and Machine Workers
of America (Ind.). Only one la­
bor organization— the Interna­
tional Union, United Weldors
(Ind.), is known to be composed
entirely of welders, employed
largely in the aircraft industry
on the west coast.
Labor-management contracts
covering welders and oxygen and
arc cutters provide employees
with benefit programs which may
include paid holidays and vaca­
tions, hospitalization, medical
and surgical insurance, life insur­
ance, sickness and accident in­
surance, and retirement pensions.
Safety precautions and protec­
tive devices are extremely impor­
tant for welders because of the
many hazards associated with
welding. Welders and cutters use
protective clothing, goggles, hel­
mets with protective lenses, and
other devices to prevent burns
and eye injuries. Although light­
ing and ventilation are usually
adequate, welders occasionally
work in the presence of toxic
gases and fumes generated by the
melting of 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. Operators of
resistance-welding machines are

565
largely free from the hazards as­
sociated with hand welding. A
clear eyeshield or clear goggles
generally offer adequate protec­
tion to these operators.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
For further information re­
garding work opportunities for
welders, inquiries should be di­
rected to local employers or the
local office of the State employ­
ment service. The State employ­
ment service also may be a source
of information about the Manpow­
er Development and Training
Act, apprenticeship, and other
programs that provide training
opportunities. General informa­
tion about welders may be ob­
tained from:
The American Welding Society,
345 East 47th St., New York,
N.Y. 10017.
International Brotherhood of Boil­
ermakers, Iron Shipbuilders,
Blacksmiths, Forgers and Help­
ers, 8th at State Ave., Kansas
City, Kans. 66101.
International Association of Ma­
chinists and Aerospace Workers,
1300 Connecticut Ave. NW.,
Washington, D.C. 20036.
International Union, United Auto­
mobile, Aerospace and Agricul­
tural Implement Workers of
America, 8000 East Jefferson
Ave., Detroit, Mich. 48214.
United Association of Journeymen
and Apprentices of the Plumb­
ing and Pipe Fitting Industry of
the United States and Canada,
901 Massachusetts Ave. NW.,
Washington, D.C. 20001.
State Supervisor of Trade and In­
dustrial Education or the local
Director of Vocational Educa­
tion in the State or city in which
a person wishes to receive train­
ing.




SOME MAJOR INDUSTRIES AND THEIR
OCCUPATIONS







AGRICULTURE

The United States is in the
midst of an agricultural revolu­
tion that is having a tremendous
impact on the employment out­
look in agriculture.
In brief, fewer and fewer farm­
ers are producing more and more
of America’s farm products. Em­
ployment on U.S. farms has de­
clined from 9.9 million in 1950
to 4.9 million in 1967. Agricul­
tural economists predict that by
1980, U.S. farms will employ
only 3 million to 3 ^ million
persons.
The reason is simply that each




farmer today can produce far
more than his predecessors. A
modern corn farmer, for instance,
will use 6-row or 8-row field
equipment, including tractors,
costing a total of about $20,000,
trucks and field implements cost­
ing about $15,000; a self-pro­
pelled combine harvester worth
$15,000, and grain drying equip­
ment valued at about $15,000.
To make this high-capacity
equipment profitable, he may
need to grow 600 to 1,000 acres
of corn. His father, using 2-row
equipment, probably earned a

good living from 320 acres. His
grandfather, using horsedrawn
equipment, could work only
about 120 acres.
There has been a vast reduc­
tion in the man-hours needed to
produce most of the major farm
commodities. It used to take 135
man-hours to produce 100 bush­
els of corn in 1910; today it takes
9. Man-hours needed to produce
100 bushels of wheat dropped
from 106 to 11 in the same pe­
riod. It took 31 hours to produce
100 pounds of turkey in 1910 but
takes only 1.6 today.

O P P O R T U N IT IE S O N F A R M S

Since the demand for farm
products is growing much more
slowly than productivity, the
number of opportunities in farm­
ing declining steadily.
The county that once had
1,000 320-acre farms now may
have only 500 640-acre farms.
Tomorrow, with ever-larger and
faster machinery, there will be
even fewer farms and farmers.
The increasing productivity of
our farmers has been a boon to
consumers and the nonfarm econ­
omy— but today farmers find
themselves in an industry that
requires ever-larger farms, more
investment, and better manage­
ment to stay in business.
Management is the key to suc­
cess in modern farming. Today’s
farmer needs a much higher level
of knowledge and skills than his
predecessor. For example, the
dairy farmer used to feed each
cow an amount of grain based on
the amount of milk she had pro­
duced the previous day or week.
The modern dairyman feeds his
cows on the basis of their po­
tential— “ p u s h in g ” p o te n tia l
high-performance cows to their
limits, cutting back on expensive
feed for cows that already have
peaked out. Figuring the poten­
tial is a much more difficult tech­
nique than weighing milk.
Similar management problems
face the modem farmer in most
areas— which is why college
training is becoming the rule
rather than the exception for the
young commercial farmer. It
gives him the technical basis he
needs to keep up with research
and technology and to apply
them intelligently on his own
farm. Biology, engineering, soil
science, and agronomy— not to
mention economics and account­
570




ing— are part of the necessary
kit of tools for a successful farm­
er today.
Capital requirements are an­
other barrier the beginning farm­
er must overcome. The average
commercial farm in 1967 had 550
acres, with a value of more than
$100,000 in land and buildings
alone. Regionally, the value of
commercial farms vary from an
average of $46,000 in Appalachia
to nearly $300,000 in the Pacific
region.
For the person who has the
training, the capital, and the
management ability, the modern
farm can offer much higher in­
comes than the old-style farm
ever did.
About 180,000 farms in the
United States sold $4,000 worth
of farm products or more during
1967. These large farms averaged
$23,754 in net income. Another
320,000 farms sold an average of
$20,000 to $39,999 worth of farm
products in 1967. These medium­
sized farms averaged $9,792 in
net income.
Together, these two groups
make up nearly 16 percent of
U.S. farms and accounted for
nearly 68 percent of U.S. farm
sales in 1967. These two groups
represent the expanding sector of
U.S. agriculture.
Although an additional one-half
million farms had gross sales of
$10,000 to $19,999 in 1967, these
farms averaged only $6,266 in net
income. Most of these farmers
would need to expand their op­
erations or supplement their
incomes with off-farm work to
equal the income they could get
in some other type of employ­
ment.
Agriculture still offers challeng­
ing and rewarding careers, with

larger incomes and better living
conditions than it used to— but
it offers them to fewer and fewer
people.
Many people, of course, prefer
living in the country, and modem
transportation and communica­
tions, public services, and house­
hold and farming appliances have
eliminated most of the disadvan­
tages that attended rural living
a generation or two ago.
Although the number of oppor­
tunities in farming is shrinking,
the number of jobs in farm-re­
lated industries is not. There are
many industries that supply
products and services to the
farmer and which handle market­
ing activities for farm products.
They have a continuing need for
young people who have a farming
background— plus training for
their specialized functions.

Train in g O pp ortun ities Available
fo r Farm ing
A good initial background in
farming is obtained by growing
up on a farm. Necessary experi­
ence also may be gained by work­
ing as a closely supervised tenant
or hired worker on a successful
farm. College training in agricul­
ture and in agricultural business
management are of substantial
value to the modem farmer.
Several types of vocational
training are available under fed­
erally assisted programs of vo­
cational education. Training is
offered in the following ways:
1.
High school courses in
agriculture are taught by teach­
ers who are agricultural college
graduates.
2. Short courses for young
farmers at schools of agriculture,
including intensive training in
farm planning, farm structures,
construction, welding and related
shop and repair work, as well as
construction in crop production,

OPPORTUNITIES ON FARMS

The most significant general
livestock feeding and manage­
ment, record keeping, and other sources of information and guid­
ance available to farmers are the
aspects of farming.
3.
Adult farmer programs in services provided by the landevening classes (or day classes in grant colleges and universities
off-seasons) providing intensive and the U. S. Department of
instruction in subjects such as Agriculture. These services in­
research,
publications,
land and soil management, crop clude
and livestock production, new teaching, and extension work.
technology and equipment, and The county agricultural agent is
often the best contact for the
financial management.




571
young person seeking advice and
assistance in farming. The Farm­
ers Home Administration system
of supervised credit is one ex­
ample of credit facilties combined
with a form of extension teach­
ing. Organized groups, such as
the Future Farmers of America
and the 4-H Clubs, also furnish
valuable training to young farm
people.




O P P O R T U N IT IE S O N S P E C I F I C
T Y P E S O F FARM S

Although the number of farms
and farm jobs are decreasing, de­
sirable and rewarding opportuni­
ties occur from time to time. The
decision to enter farming may be
made simply because an opening
exists on the family farm or on
a farm nearby. To be successful,
a young man should appraise
carefully the requirements in spe­
cific types of farm operations,
and the prospects for success in
them, taking into consideration
his aptitude, interests, prefer­
ences, experience, knowledge, and
skills in directing labor and
handling livestock and machin­
ery. He also must consider his
family labor supply and his fi­
nancial resources, as the labor and
capital requirements for an oper­
ation of adequate size vary widely
from one type of farm to another.
A realistic decision to go into
farming can be made only in
terms of a particular area or com­
munity. This section evaluates
from an occupational standpoint
some of the more common farm
types. The accompanying table
gives illustrative data on size of
farm, labor and capital require­
ments, and net farm incomes re­
ceived by operators of typical or
representative farms in various
parts of the country. Many farms
are larger than these and offer
more return than is shown here.
Some are smaller and offer the
operator little income or oppor­
tunity to improve his status with­
out major changes. On most of
the farms, the major part of the
work is done by the farm oper­
ator and his family. Whereas,
some of the smaller farms hire
workers only during the peak la­
bor season, large ones often use
hired labor the whole year.




The figures in the table on
capital invested mean that the
operator controls or uses re­
sources valued at that amount.
Many farmers supplement their
own capital with borrowed funds;
others rent part or all of the land
they use, thus allowing more of
their funds for the purchase of
livestock, feed, machinery, and
equipment. Still others have
partners who provide most of the
working capital. For example,
many farmers who raise broilers
are in partnership with a feed
dealer.
No brief general statement can
be made about specialization
versus diversification in farm op­
erations that would apply in all
parts of the country. The general
trend is for more specialized farm­
ing. Farms that produced many
products a generation ago now
may produce only two or three.
Efficient production of most
farm products requires a substan­
tial investment in specialized
equipment. If the farm operator
is to receive the full benefit from
his investment, he must produce
on a large scale. Two other fac­
tors contributing to specialization
are the increased emphasis on
quality of farm products, and the
greater knowledge and skill re­
quired for effective production.
Few farmers, however, find it ad­
vantageous to produce only one
product. The main reasons for
producing more than one product
are the desirability of spreading
price and production risks, the
more effective use of labor (par­
ticularly family labor), and the
fuller utilization of other re­
sources than can be realized in a
one-product system.

Dairy Farm s
Dairy farms are located in
most parts of the country. D e­
spite modern methods of process­
ing and transporting milk, pro­
duction is still concentrated near
the large population centers par­
ticularly in the Northeast and
the Great Lakes States. However,
many areas in the Far West
and the South are becoming large
producers of dairy products.
Many of the newer type large
dairy farms are “ drylot” or barn
operations with little or no pas­
ture land. However, on typical
dairy farms in the Lake States,
and to a lesser extent in the
Northeast, crops are important,
often requiring operators to hire
or exchange later at harvest time.
There is work every day through­
out the year on dairy farms, so
that effective use can be made of
labor, and a regular force can be
occupied most of the time.
Although most people do not
like to be “ tied down” 7 days a
week, this obstacle presents no
great hardship for the man who
enjoys working with cattle.
Dairying is also a good choice for
the man who likes to work with
mechanical equipment. Dairy
farmers who produce much of
their own feed find variety in the
many different jobs that must be
done.
The dairyman’s sales and in­
come are distributed evenly
throughout the year. Moreover,
the prices he receives are less sub­
ject to year-to-year fluctuations
than are prices received by op­
erators in most other types of
farming. The accompanying table
shows the average net farm in­
come on dairy farms in the Cen­
tral Northeast and Eastern Wis­
consin from 1964 to 1966.
Compared with farmers in
most other areas, dairy farmers
in the more concentrated milksheds of the Northeast (such as
the dairy farms in the Central
Northeast shown in the table)
573

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

574
generally have larger herds, pur­
chase a larger proportion of their
feed, and buy rather than raise
their herd replacements. In the
most highly specialized produc­
ing area near Los Angeles, dairy
farms are dry lot operations. They
are quite small in acreage but
large in milk production and
number of cows milked. No crops
are produced; these dairy oper­
ators buy their entire feed re­
quirements from outside the area.
Most of the cows are bought at
freshening time and are replaced
when their lactation period is
completed.
Net farm income represents
the return to the farm operator
and his family for their labor and
the capital invested in the farm
business— provided the operator
owns his land and is free from
debt. If he rents part or all of his
farm, not all of net farm income
is available for family living; part
of it must be used for rent. Sim­
ilarly, the farmer who is in debt
must deduct interest costs and
payments on the principal.

Livestock Farm s and Ranches
A general livestock farm is a
good choice for the farmer who is
interested and skilled in working
with livestock and mechanical
equipment. Many farmers prefer
general livestock farms— such as
the hog-fattening or beef-raising
farms, and hog-beef fattening
farms in the Corn Belt— be­
cause much the year they require
fewer chores than dairy farms.
(See table.) The timing of daily
hog and beef cattle chores also is
more flexible than the milk­
ing schedule on dairy farms.
Practically all of the regular labor
on most general livestock farms
is provided by the operator and
his family. During some seasons
of the year, there is full-time or
part-time work for several mem-




Rancher shears sheep.

bers of the family, but there are
usually slack labor periods when
there is time for leisure or non­
farm activities.
The livestock farmer’s income
is not as well distributed through­
out the year as the dairyman’s,
and it is less likely to be uniform
from year to year. Financial and
management problems result, in­
creasing the risks of operation.
Moreover, on farms of limited
acreages— often found in the
Eastern States— the level of in­
come from general livestock
farming is usually lower than
from a dairy herd on similar acre­
age.
Most hog producers have their
own breeding stock and raise the
pigs they fatten for market. Some
farmers who fatten cattle and
sheep also raise their calves and
lambs. But most of the cattle and
sheep fattened and marketed by
the livestock farmer are bred and

raised originally by someone else
— usually the livestock rancher
of the West. The accompanying
table includes data for five types
of Western livestock operations:
Northern Plains and Northern
Rocky Mountain cattle ranches,
sheep ranches in Utah and Ne­
vada, and sheep and cattle
ranches in the Southwest. In
these areas of low rainfall, the
main source of feed is range
grass, and several acres are re­
quired to support one animal.
Except where irrigation is avail­
able, feed crops usually are not
grown. Some ranchers, particu­
larly those in the Northern
Plains, own only a small part of
the land on which they graze
their livestock. Most of the land
on which they buy grazing rights
is public. Large acreages are re­
quired to provide enough pasture
for their stock; ranchers spend
much of their time in the saddle,
truck, or jeep managing their
herds.

Poultry Farm s
One-third of the farmers in the
United States raise some poultry,
but in 1964, fewer than 3 percent
were classified as poultry farm­
ers. Many poultry farms concen­
trate on egg production. Most of
the larger and more specialized
of these farms are in the North­
east and in California; others
produce broilers. Many highly
concentrated centers of broiler
production are east of the Mississppi River, and a few are on
the West Coast. Turkey produc­
ers also are specialized. A con­
centration of specialized produc­
ers of ducks is located in Suffolk
County, Long Island, New York.
A few poultrymen produce
some crops for sale and purchase
special poultry feeds and laying
mash. Crops are not grown by
most specialized poultry produc-

OPPORTUNITIES ON SPECIFIC TYPES OF FARMS

575

Size of Farm, Labor Used, Capital Invested, and Net Farm Income on Commercial
Farms, by Type, Size, and Location, 1964-66 Average
Size of farm in 1966
as measured by —

Type of farm and location
Dairy farms:
Central Northeast ..................................

34 milk cows ........................

Total
labor
used
(hours)

Capital invested in
Land
Machinery
and
and
buildings equipment Livestock
Crops

Total

Net
farm
income1

4,570
4,630
4,960
1,660

$26,900
44,460
37,100
14,220

$ 8,600
13,580
2,310
4,180

$ 9,500
11,810
7,370
700

$ 3,000
6,520
0
160

$48,000
76,370
46,780
19,260

5,004
3,138
3,022
1,383

289 acres of cropland .........

3,570
4,140
2,400

52,830
94,550
159,950

7,390
11,460
16,150

7,970
17,600
370

3,600
12,880
360

71,790
136,490
176,830

6,773
13,089
14,155

501 acres of cropland .........

22,750
3,620

269,330
82,600

45,940
11,000

7,500
680

1,830
310

324,600
94,590

34,554
8,554
15,913

Egg-producing farms, New Jersey ..............
Broiler farms, Georgia ..................................
Com Belt farms:
Hog-beef raising .....................................

5,300 layers ........................
37,160 produced annually....

Cash g r a in ...............................................
Cotton farms:
Nonirrigated:
High Plains, Texas ........................
Irrigated:
High Plains, Texas ........................
Tobacco farms:
North Carolina Coastal Plain ..............
Kentucky bluegrass:

168 acres of cropland .........

444 acres of cropland .........

5,220

134,950

18,080

740

430

154,200

50 acres of cropland ...........

5,100

37,380

4,660

520

560

43,120

5,962

Tobacco-dairy, outer area ............
Pentiroval area, Kentucky-Tennessee:

44 acres of cropland ...........

4,250
4,800

100,130
38,140

5,570
6,490

7,550
4,710

2,300
1,990

115,550
51,330

8,232
5,991

Tobacco-dairy ..................................
Wheat farms:

180 acres of cropland .........

4,390
5,030

77,450
56,530

7,960
7,620

9,660
6,260

3,800
2,770

98,870
73,180

5,945
6,496

Wheat-fallow, Pacific Northwest .........
Cattle ranches:

1,114 acres of cropland .....

2,780
3,150
3,850

55,150
103,830
156,600

10,490
10,210
20,530

4,370
8,250
4,690

1,650
2,710
1,200

71,660
125,000
183,020

9,993
10,113
16,711

303 c o w s ................................
148 c o w s ................................

4,560
6,660
3,690

57,160
187,580
157,530

7,930
15,400
5,710

25,170
57,790
28,390

3,560
9,190
2.050

93,820
269,960
193,680

7,064
13,857
4,916

2,420 sheep ..........................
1,278 sheep ..........................

11,300
5,230

124,420
208,450

11,810
5,280

61,440
23,000

2.050
970

199,720
237,700

13,869
8,281

Sheep ranches:
Southwest.................................................

1 The information presented here is on an owner-operated basis,
primarily for comparability between types of farms. Net farm income
is the return to operator and unpaid members of the family for their
labor and management on the farm and return to total capital. No

ers, particularly those who pro­
duce broilers or large laying
flocks. Commercial poultry farm­
ers in New Jersey, for example,
buy all their feed. The typical
broiler producer in Maine, the
Delmarva (Delaware, Maryland,
Virginia) peninsula, and Georgia
devotes almost all of his capital
and labor to the production of
broilers.
Poultry farming requires spe­
cialized skill in handling birds,
chiefly on the part of the oper­
ator. Bulk handling of feed and
mechanical feeding is widespread
and requires little p h y s i c a l
strength. For these reasons, poul­
try farms can use available fam­
ily help.
Data on average capital invest­
ment and net farm income for
representative egg producers in
New Jersey and broiler operators
in Georgia from 1964 to 1966 are




allowances has been made for payment of rent, interest, or mortgage.
N ote. Prepared in the Farm Production Economics Division,
Economic Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.

given in the table. These averages
do not reveal the sharp year-toyear fluctuations in income that
occur. Because they have a high
proportion of cash costs and a
thin margin of profit, relatively
small changes in prices of feed,
broilers, and eggs can produce
sizable fluctuations in net farm
income.
The incomes of most broiler
producers, however, are fairly
stable because they produce “ un­
der contract.” Contract produc­
tion is more widespread in broiler
production that in any other ma­
jor type of farming. Under these
arrangements, the financing agen­
cy (usually a feed dealer) furn­
ishes the feed, chicks, and techni­
cal supervision— almost every­
thing except the buildings, equip­
ment, and direct production labor.
The grower receives a stipulated
amount per 1,000 birds marketed,

and often a bonus for superior
efficiency. Many turkey produc­
ers operate under similar con­
tracts, but these arrangements
are not nearly so universal for
the production of turkeys as for
broilers.

Corn and W heat Farm s
For the man who likes working
with crops and farm machinery,
cash grain farming (growing soy­
beans, corn or wheat) has much
to offer. Many people dislike be­
ing tied down with daily respon­
sibilities the year around such
as with livestock chores. They
prefer, instead to work long days
with large laborsaving equipment
during the busy seasons, such as
in soil preparation, planting, and
harvesting, and then having some
free time in slack periods.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

576
The table shows the invest­
ment required and the recent in­
come experience of some repre­
sentative cash grain farms. Farms
of this type include cash grain
farms in the Corn Belt, spring
wheat farms in the Northern
Plains, winter wheat farms in the
Southern Plains, and wheat-pea
and wheat-fallow farms in the
Pacific Northwest. Some of these
farms— particularly in the North­
ern Plains— raise some beef cat­
tle for sale as feeders, and a small
number keep a few milk cows.
However, this livestock produc­
tion is usually of secondary im­
portance. Many of these cash
crop farmers do not raise any
livestock.
Two of the main risks faced by
the commercial wheat grower are
unfavorable weather and low
prices. However, crop insurance
has reduced the risk of low yields,
and Government price support
programs have lessened the risk
of low prices.
Cotton, Tobacco, and Peanut
Farm s
In terms of numbers of farm­
ers, the production of cotton, to­
bacco, and peanuts makes up a
large part of the agriculture in
the Southeastern and South Cen­
tral States. These products are
grown on farms that range from
very small operating units to
comparatively large ones. Market
competition in these crops has
been keen, and many growers
have been forced to diversify and
enlarge their farms— adjustments
which require capital investment.
Competition from cotton growers
in the irrigated areas of the West
and Southwest have forced many
farmers in the Southeast to dis­
continue cotton production. Some
of them have diversified their op­
erations, and others have found
better opportunities in Southern
Industrial expansion.




Annual returns from these spe­
cialty farms usually vary greatly
from year to year because of the
vagaries of nature and the
changes in prices. Operators of
these farms who keep abreast of
production and marketing con­
ditions are usually well rewarded
for their ability to manage, pro­
duce, and market their products.

Private Outdoor Recreation Farm s

Farm worker harvests apricots.

Crop Specialty Farm s
Many farmers throughout the
country have unique background,
skills, resources, or other advan­
tages for particular kinds of
farming chiefly because of their
location, home training, or neigh­
borhood practices. They may spe­
cialize in the production of a sin­
gle crop— such as grapes, oranges,
potatoes, sugarcane, or melons—
or a combination of related spe­
cialty crops.
Operators of these enterprises
usually employ many seasonal
workers and require relatively ex­
pensive specialized equipment.
They need specific skills, many
of which can be obtained only
through experience. Enterprises
of this kind should be under­
taken only by persons with con­
siderable experience and some of
the special skills and techniques
required. An individual having
an aptitude for these skills usu­
ally can earn them by working a
few years as a hired hand on such
a specialty farm or as a tenant
for a landlord who can give di­
rection and assistance.

Public demand for outdoor rec­
reation is far in excess of the
existing and projected supply of
public facilities. The public sec­
tor is not flexible enough to sup­
ply the specialized types of rec­
reation or services demanded by
smaller groups. The privately
owned outdoor recreation enter­
prise, particularly the farm-base
type, is in a unique position to
supply these types of recreation
services and activities to the
public.
The 1964 Census of Agricul­
ture reported over 3 million farms
in the United States. Of this to­
tal, about 28,000 earned money
from some type of recreation
activity.
Many farm operators in the vi­
cinity of national, State, and lo­
cal parks, or near wildlife reser­
vations have taken advantage of
the location in establishing rec­
reation businesses. The average
amount received from this ac­
tivity was about $1,500 per farm
reporting.
These farmers sell hunting or
fishing rights to individuals, form
hunting clubs, or establish pri­
vate campgrounds. They absorb
the overflow from public camp­
grounds or cater to the individ­
uals who want more privacy in
their camping. Vacation farms
cater to family groups during the
summer and allow hunting later
in the year when children are in

OPPORTUNITIES ON SPECIFIC TYPES OF FARMS

school. Many farmers enlarge and
improve their ponds or irrigation
reservoirs. They stock ponds for
fishing and have swimming areas
in the summer and skating areas
in the winter. Old farm buildings,
sheds, and barns are converted
into riding stables or horse board­
ing stables, or a combination of
both. Shore and backwater areas
are used to dock privately owned
craft. In so doing, many farmers
have converted a liability into
an asset. Farmers become guides
for hunters during the game sea­
son and mechanics and service




engineers for watercraft. Guides
are also in demand for nature
trails and scenic tours.

577
vested and income, the venture
is often rewarding to individuals
who have the ability and the
resources.

O ther Specialties
Other highly specialized oper­
ations, such as fur farms, apiar­
ies, greenhouses, nurseries, and
flower farms, require special
knowledge and skilled manage­
ment. Special skills and equip­
ment are required, and risks are
high. Even with the high risk,
from the standpoint of capital in­

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Additional information may be
obtained from the U.S. Depart­
ment of Agriculture, Washington,
D.C. 20250; the Department of
Commerce, Washington, D.C.
20230; and from State Land
Grant Colleges and Universities.




O C C U P A T IO N S R E L A T E D T O
A G R IC U L T U R E

an increasing number of area
agents who work on specialized
problems in several counties.

T rain in g and O ther Q ualifications
Because of the increased scale
and complexity of modern farm­
ing, farmers are buying a greater
range and volume of production
inputs and services from off-farm
sources. Thus, larger numbers of
people are needed in occupations
related to agriculture. These oc­
cupations are many and diverse
and offer a wide range of choice
to the person who is interested
in agriculture but does not have
the opportuity, resources, or de­
sire to enter agriculture directly.
The salary range in occupations
related to agriculture vary wide­
ly, depending on education, ex­
perience and type of job. Salaries
of $10,000 a year or more are not
uncommon. The professional and
technical vocations usually re­
quire college training; however,
other vocations may be learned
on the job. Some of these occupa­
tions are discussed below.

COOPERATIVE EXTENSION
SERVICE WORKERS
(D.O.T. 096.128)

N ature of the W ork
Extension Service workers are
engaged in educational work in
agriculture,
home economics,
youth activities, and community
resource development. They are
employed jointly by State landgrant universities and the U.S.
Department of Agriculture. Ex­
tension workers must be profi­
cient in both subject matter and
teaching methods.
County Agricultural agents
are interested in improving the
efficiency of agricultural produc­




tion and marketing, including the
development of new market out­
lets. County home economics
agents work closely with women
in home management, nutrition,
and other phases of family living.
There are 4-H extension agents
who work with youth. In some
counties, special agents concen­
trate on community resource de­
velopment.
Extension workers help people
analyze and solve their farm and
home problems and aid in com­
munity improvement. Much of
this educational work is carried
on in groups, through meetings,
tours, demonstrations, and local
voluntary leaders. Individual as­
sistance is given on problems that
cannot be solved satisfactorily by
group methods. Extension work­
ers rely heavily on mass com­
munication media such as news­
papers, radio, and television.
The county extension staff is
supported by State extension
specialists in s u b j e c t-m a 11 e r
fields such as agronomy, live­
stock, marketing, agricultural
economics, home economics, hor­
ticulture, and entomology. Each
of these specialists keeps abreast
of the latest research in his par­
ticular field and works with
agents in applying this informa­
tion to local needs and problems.

Places of Em ploym ent
Extension agents are located in
nearly every county in the United
States. Counties having many
farmers who produce a variety
of crops may have as many as
10 agents or more, each specializ­
ing in a particular field such as
dairying, poultry production, crop
production, or livestock. There is

Extension agents must have a
bachelor’s degree in agriculture,
home economics, sociology, or
other training that equips them
for the particular type of audi­
ences with whom they work. In
most States, the Extension Ser­
vice maintains an in-service train­
ing program to keep agents in­
formed of the latest developments
in agricultural research, of new
programs and policies that affect
agriculture and of new teaching
techniques. To be successful, ex­
tension workers must like to work
with people.
In most instances, specialists
on the State staff are expected
to have a master’s degree and
special training in their particular
lines of work.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of Extension Ser­
vice workers had grown to 15,000
in 1968. The demand for addition­
al workers is expected to con­
tinue, especially in depressed
rural areas. As agricultural tech­
nology becomes more compli­
cated, and as farm people become
more aware of the need for or­
ganized activity, more help will
be sought from trained Extension
Service personnel. The Extension
Service also is being extended
to new segments of the popula­
tion, as residents recognize the
value of their assistance, partic­
ularly in helping the disadvan­
taged.
Counterparts of the Cooperative
Extension Service are being estab­
lished in many countries, and Ex­
tension Service personnel often
are recruited to help initiate and
organize these programs.
579

580

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

U.S. Department of Agriculture,
Washington, D.C. 20250. (Also
see statement on Home Econ­
omists.)

SOIL SCIENTISTS
(D.O.T. 040.081)

N ature of the W ork

County agricultural agent and farmer discuss methods for improving pasture.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
The salaries of extension agents
vary from State to State and
county to county. In 1968, start­
ing salaries for new agents aver­
aged about $7,200.
Ordinarily, the assistant agent
is promoted rapidly to a more re­
sponsible job, either in the county
where he works or in another
county in the State. In 1968, sal­
aries for experienced agents av­




eraged about $10,500. Extension
specialists’
salaries
averaged
about $12,500.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Additional information may be
obtained from County Extension
Offices; State Director of the Co­
operative Extension work located
at each Land-Grant University;
or the Federal Extension Service,

Soil scientists study the phy­
sical, chemical, and biological
characteristics and behavior of
soils. They investigate the soils
both in the field and the labora­
tory and grade them according to
a national system of soil classifi­
cation. From their research,
scientists can classify soils in
terms or response to management
practices and capability for pro­
ducing crops, grasses, and trees,
as well as their utility as e n g i ­
neering materials. Soil scientists
prepare maps, usually based on
aerial photographs, on which they
plot the individual kinds of soil
and other landscape features sig­
nificant to soil use and manage­
ment in relation to land lines,
field boundaries, roads, and other
conspicuous features.
Soil scientists also conduct re­
search to determine the physical
and chemical properties of soils
and their water relationships, in
order to understand their behav­
ior and origin. They predict the
yields of cultivated crops, grasses,
and trees, under alternative com­
binations of management prac­
tices.
Soil science offers opportunities
for those who wish to specialize
in soil classification and mapping,
soil geography, soil chemistry, soil
physics, soil microbiology, and
soil management. Training and
experience in soil science also will
prepare persons for positions as

581

OCCUPATIONS RELATED TO AGRICULTURE

management agencies. A few are
independent consultants, and oth­
ers work for consulting firms. An
increasing number are employed
in foreign countries as research
leaders, consultants, and agricul­
tural managers.

Train in g and Advancem ent
Training in a college or uni­
versity of recognized standing is
important in obtaining employ­
ment, as a soil scientist. For Fed­
eral employment, the minimum
qualification for entrance is a B.S.
degree with a major in Soil Sci­
ence or in a closely related field
of study, and having 30 semester
hours of course work in the bio­
logical, physical, and earth sci­
ences, including a minimum of 15
semester hours in soils. Those
having graduate training— espe­
cially those with the doctor’s
degree— can be expected to ad­
vance rapidly into a responsible
and high paying position. This
is particularly true in soil re­
search, including the more respon­
sible positions in soil classifica­
tion, and in teaching. Soil sci­
entists who are qualified for work
with both field and laboratory
data have a special advantage.
Many colleges and universities
offer fellowships and assistantships for graduate training or em­
ploy graduate students for parttime teaching or research.
Soil scientist conducts test on barley roots with aid of ionization detector.

Em ploym ent O utlook
farm managers, land appraisers,
and many other professional
positions.

Places of Em ploym ent
Most soil scientists are em­
ployed by agencies of the Federal
Government, State experiment
stations, and colleges of agricul­




ture. However, many are employ­
ed in a wide range of other public
and private institutions, including
fertilizer companies, private re­
search laboratories, insurance
companies, banks and other lend­
ing agencies, real estate firms,
land appraisal boards, State high­
way departments, State and city
park departments, State conser­
vation departments, and farm

The demand is increasing for
soil scientists to help complete the
scientific classification and evalu­
ation of the soil resources in the
United States. One of the major
program objectives of the Soil
Conservation Service of the U.S.
Department of Agriculture is to
complete the soil survey of all
rural lands in the United States.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

582
This program includes research,
soil classification and correlation,
interpretation of results for use
by agriculturists and engineers,
and training of other workers to
use these results. Also, demand
is increasing for both basic and
applied research to increase the
efficiency of soil use.
Earnings
The incomes of soil scientists
depend upon their education, pro­
fessional experience, and individ­
ual abilities. The entrance salary
in the Federal service for gradu­
ates having a B.S. degree was
$5,732 since July 1968. They may
expect advancement to $6,981 af­
ter 1 year of satisfactory per­
formance. Futher promotion de­
pends upon the individual’s abil­
ity to do high-quality work and
to accept responsibility. Earnings
of well-qualified Federal soil sci­
entists with several years’ exper­
ience range from $10,203 to
$16,946 per year.
Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Additional information may be
obtained from the U.S. Civil Ser­
vice Commission, Washington,
D.C. 20415; Office of Personnel,
U.S. Department of Agriculture,
Washington, D.C. 20250; or any
office of the Department’s Soil
Conservation Service.
Also see statements on Chem­
ists and Biologists.

SOIL CONSERVATIONISTS
(D.O.T. 040.081)

N atu re of the W ork
Soil conservationists supply
farmers, ranchers, and others with




technical assistance in planning,
applying, and maintaining meas­
ures and structural improvements
for soil and water conservation
on individual holdings, groups
of holdings, or on watersheds.
Farmers and other land managers
use this technical assistance in
making adjustments in land use;
protecting land against soil de­
terioration; rebuilding eroded and
depleted soils; stabilizing runoff
and sediment-producing areas;
i m p r o v i n g cover on crop,
forest, pasture, range, and wildlife
lands; conserving water for farm
and ranch use and reducing dam­
age from flood water and sedi­
ment; and in draining or irriga­
ting farms or ranches.
The types of technical services
provided by soil conservationists
are as follows: Maps presenting
inventories of soil, water, vege­
tation, and other details essential
in conservation planning and ap­

plication; information on the
proper land utilization and the
treatment suitable for the plan­
ned use of each field or part of the
farm or ranch, groups of farms or
ranches, or entire watersheds; and
estimates of the relative cost of,
and expected returns from, var­
ious alternatives of land use and
treatment.
After the landowner or operator
decides upon a conservation pro­
gram that provides for the land
to be used within its capability
and treated according to the plan­
ned use, the conservationist re­
cords the relevant facts as part
of a plan which, together with
the maps and other supplemental
information, constitute a plan of
action for conservation farming
or ranching. The soil conserva­
tionist then gives the land man­
ager technical guidance in apply­
ing and maintaining the conser­
vation practices.

OCCUPATIONS RELATED TO AGRICULTURE

W here Employed
Most soil conservationists are
employed by the Federal Gov­
ernment, mainly by the U.S. De­
partment of Agriculture’s Soil
Conservation Service and the
Bureau of Indian Affairs in the
Department of the Interior. Some
are employed by colleges and
State and local governments;
others work for banks and public
utilities.

T rain in g and A dvancem ent
A Bachelor of Science degree
and a major in soil conservation
or a related agricultural science
constitute the minimum require­
ment for professional soil con­
servationists. Those who have un­
usual aptitude in the various
phases of the work have good
chances of advancement to higher
salaried technical administrative
jobs.

year. Advancement to $6,981
could be expected after 1 year of
satisfactory service. Further ad­
vancement depends upon the in­
dividual’s ability to accept greater
responsibility. Earnings of wellqualified Federal soil conserva­
tionists with several years’ exper­
ience range from $10,203 to
$16,946 a year.

Sources of A dditional In fo rm atio n
Additional information on em­
ployment as a soil conservationist
may be obtained from the U.S.
Civil Service Commission, Wash­
ington, D.C. 20415; Employment
Division, Office of Personnel, U.S.
Department
of
Agriculture,
Washington, D.C. 20250; or any
office of the Department’s Soil
Conservation Service.

OTHER PROFESSIONAL
WORKERS

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment opportunities for
well-trained soil conservationists
were good in 1968. Opportunities
in the profession will expand be­
cause government agencies, public
utility companies, banks, and
other organizations are becoming
interested in conservation and
are adding conservationists to
their staffs. Other new openings
will occur in college teaching, par­
ticularly at the undergraduate
level. In addition, some openings
will arise because of the normal
turnover in personnel.

Earnings
Since July 1968, soil conser­
vationists having a bachelor’s de­
gree and employed by the Federal
Government received $5,732 a




N ature of the W ork
The discussion that follows
deals primarily with job cate­
gories that are generally termed
professional fields. These occupa­
tions generally require at least a
bachelor’s degree, and master’s
and Ph. D. degrees are becoming
increasingly valuable both from
the standpoint of salary and of
executing the functions required
on the job. Some of these jobs
are discussed more fully else­
where in the Handbook. (See
index.)
Agricultural economists deal
with problems related to pro­
duction, financing, pricing, and
marketing of farm products both
in the United States and in sev­
eral foreign countries. They are
factfinders, evaluators, analysts,

583
and interpreters who provide eco­
nomic information to farmers,
policymakers, and other inter­
ested persons. They provide costbenefit analyses for evaluating
farm programs at the National,
State, and farm level. They study
the effects of mechanization,
technological advances, and other
developments that influence the
supply and demand for farm pro­
ducts and its accompanying ef­
fects on costs and prices of farm
products.
Agricultural engineers develop
new and improved farm machines
and equipment, deal with the
physical aspects of soil and water
problems in farming; design and
supervise installation of irrigation
systems, watershed protection,
flood prevention, and related
works; devise new techniques for
harvesting and processing farm
products; and design more effi­
cient farm buildings.
Agronomists are concerned
with growing breeding, and im­
proving field crops such as cereals
and grains, legumes and grasses,
tobacco, cotton, and others. They
also do research in the funda­
mental principles of plant and
soil sciences and study and de­
velop seed propagation and plant
adaption.

Animal physiologists and ani­
mal husbandmen study the en­
vironmental influences in relation
to efficient management of farm
animals; they also are concerned
with the breeding, growth, nutri­
tion, and physiology of livestock.
Veterinarians inspect livestock
at public stockyards and points of
entry into the U.S.; inspect es­
tablishments that produce veter­
inary biological supplies; admin­
ister tests for animal diseases;
conduct programs for the control
and eradication of animal disease;
research livestock diseases and
vaccines for disease control; work
directly with farmers in protec­
tion or restoration of livestock

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

584

Animal physiologist conducts research on heat tolerance of cattle.

health; and provide services for
the care of small animals and pets.
Geneticists try to develop
strains, varieties, breeds, and hy­
brids of plants and animals that
are better suited than those pre­
sently available to the production
of food and fiber.
Microbiologists study bacteria
and the relation of other micro­
organisms to human, plant, and
animal health and the function
of these micro-organisms in the
making of products such as vita­
mins, antibiotics, amino acids,
sugars, and polymers.
Plant scientists study plant
diseases and their nature, cause,
and methods of control. They
also study the structure of plants
and the growth factors in plants.
Methods of improving fruits, veg­
etables, flowers, and ornamentals,
and means by which improve­




ments may be made by better
management, environment, and
propagation are also of concern.

Plant quarantine and plant pest
control inspectors, who are train­
ed in the biological sciences, sup­
ervise and perform professional
and scientific work in enforcing
plant quarantine and pest control
laws. Plant Quarantine Inspectors
inspect ships, planes, trucks, and
autos coming into the country to
keep out dangerous insect pests.
Plant Pest Control Inspectors
conduct programs to protect the
crops of the country by prompt
detection, control, and eradica­
tion of plant pests.
Entomologists study insects,
both beneficial and harmful to
farming. They particularly are
concerned with identifying the
populations and distributions of
insects that injure growing crops

and animals, harm human beings,
and damage agricultural commod­
ities in shipping, storage, process­
ing, and distribution and in find­
ing means by which these insects
may be controlled.
Foresters are concerned with
the protection, production, pro­
cessing, and distribution of our
timber resources. They also study
means by which wood may be
seasoned, preserved, and given
new properties.
Human nutritionists study the
means by which the human body
utilizes food substances.
Rural sociologists study the
structure and functions of the
social institutions (customs, prac­
tices, and laws) that are a part
of and/or affect rural society.
School teachers in vocational
agriculture and related fields su­
pervise and give instructions in
farm management, communica­
tions, mechanics, engineering, and
related fields.
Farm managers supervise and
coordinate the production, mar­
keting, and purchasing activities
of one farm or a group of farms.

Places of Em ploym ent
Persons trained in these spe­
cialties work in various capacities
that relate to agriculture. Govern­
ment agencies, colleges, agricul­
tural experiment stations, and
private businesses that deal with
farmers hire many research work­
ers. They also hire people to take
technical and administrative re­
sponsibilities in public agencies
involving farmers or programs af­
fecting farmers. Agri-business and
farmer cooperatives, private busi­
ness, commercial, and financial
companies that buy from, sell to,
or serve farmers also employ
many people. State, county, and
municipalities hire many who
serve as vocational agriculture
teachers and workers in agricul-

OCCUPATIONS RELATED TO AGRICULTURE

tural communications, in farmers’
organizations, or in trade associ­
ations whose members deal with
farmers.
The number of research activ­
ities related to agriculture has in­
creased very rapidly. The largest
agencies in this field are the State
experiment stations connected
with the land-grant colleges and
the various research branches of
the U.S. Department of Agri­
culture. Other research organi­
zations include some engaged in
independent research, and some
connected with companies that
finance farming operations, mar­
ket farm products, or produce
chemicals, equipment, and other
supplies or services for farmers.
The U.S. Department of Agri­
culture employs workers in re­
search positions in various parts
of the country: in Washington,
D.C., at the Agricultural R e­
search Center at Beltsville, Md.;
and at land-grant colleges. Other
Government departments also
have many agricultural research
jobs.
Various independent research
organizations, foundations, and
private business groups in many
parts of the country recently have
initiated research related to agri­
culture. They tend to be located
either in industrial centers or in
areas of high agricultural activity,
and include producers of feed,
seed, fertilizer, farm equipment;
and insecticides, herbicides, and
other chemical dusts and sprays.
Public and private lending in­
stitutions, which make loans to
farmers, employ men with broad
training in agriculture and busi­
ness. These workers ordinarily are
required to have had practical
farm experience, as well as aca­
demic training in agriculture, eco­
nomics, and other subjects. Mak­
ing financially sound loans in­
volves careful analysis of the farm
business and proper evaluation of
farm real estate and other farm




property. These workers are em­
ployed by the cooperative Farm
Credit Administration in its
banks and in associations oper­
ating
under its
supervision
throughout the country; by the
Farmers Home Administration in
its Washington and county offi­
ces; by rural banks; and by in­
surance companies that have sub­
stantial investments in farm
mortgages.
The Federal and State Govern­
ments also employ various spe­
cialists in activities relating to ag­
riculture. These specialists have
technical and managerial respon­
sibilities in activities such as pro­
grams relating to the production
marketing, inspection, and grad­
ing of farm products; prevention
of the spread of plant pests, ani­
mal parasites, and diseases; and
management and control of wild­
life.
Large numbers of profession­
ally trained persons are employed
by cooperatives and business
firms that deal with farmers. Em­
ployment in these organizations
may be expected to expand, as
farmers rely increasingly on them
to provide farm supplies, ma­
chinery, equipment, and services,
and to market farm products. The
size of the organization and the
types of services it offers deter­
mine the number of its employees
and the nature of their jobs.
Large farm supply cooperatives
and businesses, for example, may
have separate divisions for feed,
seed, fertilizer, petroleum, chem­
icals, farm machinery, public re­
lations, and credit, each super­
vised by a department head. In
smaller businesses and coopera­
tives, such as local grain-market­
ing elevators, the business is run
almost entirely by the general
manager who has only two or
three helpers.
Agricultural communications is
another expanding area of spe­
cialization. Crop reporters and

585
market news reporters are em­
ployed by the U.S. Department
of Agriculture in field offices
throughout the United States.
Crop reporters gather information
on crop production during all
stages of the growing season. Mar­
ket news reporters collect infor­
mation on the movement of agri­
cultural produce from the farm
to the market. Radio and TV
farm directors are employed by
many radio and TV stations to
report prices, sales, grades, and
other agricultural information to
farm people. Agricultural re­
porters and editors compile farm
news and data for farm journals,
bulletins, and broadcasts. Closely
related to agricultural communi­
cations is employment in farmers’
organizations or in-trade associa­
tions whose members deal with
farmers.
The
Nationwide,
federally
aided program of vocational edu­
cation offers employment for per­
sons technically trained in agri­
culture and related subjects.
Teachers of vocational agriculture
not only teach high school stu­
dents interested in farming, but
provide organized instruction to
assist young farmers in becoming
satisfactorily established in farm­
ing and in becoming community
leaders. They also provide organ­
ized instruction for adult farmers,
giving individual consultation on
their farms to keep them abreast
of modem farm technology.
The qualifications of workers
in all of these fields ordinarily in­
clude a college education and spe­
cial training in a particular line
of work. In most of these fields,
the demand for workers exceeds
the supply. In recent years, the
demand has been increased be­
cause of the need to recruit pro­
fessional personnel to staff agri­
cultural missions and to give
technical aid to agricultural in­
stitutions and farmers in other
countries.

586

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

Opportunities With Coopera­
tives. Farmer cooperatives are lo­

Opportunities in Research. Ad­
ditional information on research
opportunities at land-grant col­
leges may be obtained from the
dean of agriculture at the State
land-grant college. Information
on employment in the U.S. De­
partment of Agriculture is avail­
able from the USD A recruitment
representatives at land-grant col­
leges and from the Office of Per­
sonnel, U.S. Department of Agri­
culture, Washington, D.C. 20250.
The following publications will
be valuable:

cated in every State. Information
relating to job opportunities in
farmer cooperatives may be ob­
tained from local or regional co­
operatives. If no jobs are avail­
able with these cooperatives, they
may be able to make referrals to
others which have openings. Other
sources of information are the
county agent and the Agricultural
Economics Department of State
Agricultural Colleges. General in­
formation may be obtained from
the American Institute of Coop­
eration or the National Council
of Farmer Cooperatives, both lo­
cated at 1200 17th St. NW.,
Washington, D.C. 20036, and the
Cooperative League of the U.S.A.,
59 East Van Buren St., Chicago,
111. 60605.

“Profiles-Careers in the U.S. De­
partment of Agriculture,” U.S.
Department of Agriculture, Oc­
tober 1968. Superintendent of
Documents, Washington, D.C.
20402. Price $2.
“Rewarding Careers in the Dy­
namic Industry — Agriculture,”
American Association of LandGrant Colleges and State Uni­
versities, Washington, D.C.,
1966. Copies can be obtained
free from your State Agricul­
tural College.
“Scientific Careers in the Agricul­
tural Research Service,” U.S.
Department of Agriculture,
1967. Superintendent of Docu­
ments, Washington, D.C. 20402.
Price 35^.

Opportunities in Agricultural
Finance. Inquiries on employment
opportunities in agricultural fi­
nance may be directed to the
following:
Farm
Credit
Administration,
Washington, D.C. 20578.
Farm Credit District—Springfield,
Mass.; Baltimore, Md.; Colum­
bia, S.C.; Louisville, Ky.; New
Orleans, La.; St. Louis, Mo.; St.
Paul, Minn.; Omaha, Nebr.;
Wichita, Kans.; Houston, Tex.;
Berkeley, Calif.; Spokane, Wash.
Farmers Home Administration,
U.S. Department of Agriculture,
Washington, D.C. 20250.
Agricultural Director, American
Bankers Association, 90 Park
Ave., New York, N.Y. 10016.




In cow testing and artificial
breeding, an association of farm­
ers employs one worker or more
on a monthly basis to conduct
the operations. Supervisors who
do cow testing are employed by
dairy herd improvement associa­
tions. They must have a high
school education, and a farm
background is almost essential.
Artificial breeding associations
employ inseminators who must
have at least a high school edu­
cation. Agricultural college train­
ing is desirable but not essential
for employment in these occupa­
tions. Brief periods of approxi­
mately a month of specialized
training are available through the
associations.
Other services for farmers are
more seasonal. These include the
following: Fruit spraying (2-3
months), airplane dusting (4-6
months), grain combining (2
months) hay and straw baling
(2-8 months), tractor plowing and
cultivating (4-6 months), and
sheep shearing (2-3 months).
These and many other services
often are done by farmers who en­

gage in custom work as a sideline
to keep their equipment busy. In­
areas where the growing season
is long, however, the period when
these services can be carried on is
long enough to permit individuals
to specialize in them.
Closely associated but some­
what more remote from farm op­
eration are such activities as re­
pairing and servicing farm ma­
chinery; feed grinding and mix­
ing; maintaining storages and
warehouses of agricultural prod­
ucts; operating nurseries and
greenhouses; and packing, grad­
ing, and processing farm products.
Although these activities are
sometimes performed on the farm,
the current trend is to conduct
them as specialized lines of busi­
ness away from the farm. An ag­
ricultural background is helpful
to people who enter these lines of
work. The agricultural aspects,
however, can be learned more
readily than the required special­
ized skills.

Opportunities for Agricultural
Economists. For additional infor­
mation about opportunities in ag­
ricultural economics, check with
the Department of Agricultural
Economics at State land-grant
colleges. For information on Fed­
eral employment opportunities,
applicants may get in touch with
USD A recruitment representa­
tives at the State land-grant col­
lege or write directly to the Office
of Personnel, U.S. Department of
Agriculture, Washington, D.C.
20250.

Opportunities as Vocational
Agriculture Teachers. As salaries,
travel, and programs of vocational
agriculture teachers vary slightly
among States, prospective teach­
ers should consult the Head
Teacher Trainer in Agriculture
Education at the land-grant col­
lege or the State Supervisor of
Agricultural Education at the

OCCUPATIONS RELATED TO AGRICULTURE

State Department of Public In­
struction in their respective
States.

FARM SERVICE JOBS
In almost every type of agri­
culture, farmers require special­




ized services which readily can be
earned and performed by other
workers. A person can enter many
of these services, either as an in­
dependent operator or as an em­
ployee. Some services require an
extensive outlay of capital, and
others require very little. Some
are highly seasonal; others are

587
performed year round. These ser­
vices and the operation of a small
farm can sometimes be combined.
Services that provide yearround employment include the
following: Cow testing, artificial
breeding,
livestock
trucking,
whitewashing, well drilling, fenc­
ing, and tilling.




MINING
The mining industry is a major
supplier of the basic raw materials
and energy sources required for
industrial and consumer use.
Metal mines provide iron, copper,
gold, and other ores. Quarrying
and other non metallic mining pro­
duce many of the basic materials
such as limestone, gravel, and fire
clay needed to build the country’s
schools, offices, homes, and high­
ways. Petroleum, natural gas, and
coal are the primary sources of
nearly all our energy, both for in­
dustrial and personal use. Few of
the products that are extracted
from mines reach the consumer
in their natural state. Nearly all
require further processing in one
or several of the manufacturing
industries.

face mining, are truck and tractor
drivers.
Skilled craftsmen and foremen
account for the second largest
occupational group. Mechanics
and repairmen maintain the com­
plex equipment and machinery
used throughout the various min­
ing industries. Many heavy equip­
ment operators, such as excava­
ting, grading, and power shovel
operators, are employed in open
pit mining operations. Large num­
bers of pumpers, gagers, and enginemen are needed in the extrac­
tion and transportation of petro­
leum and natural gas. Foremen,
needed to supervise the mine
work crews, also constitute an
important part of the industry’s
work force.

Mining is the smallest major
industry
division,
employing
610,000 wage and salary workers
in 1968. Nearly one-half of these
workers are employed in the ex­
ploration and extraction of crude
petroleum and natural gas. Coal
mining, and quarrying and nonmetallic mineral mining each ac­
count for about one-fifth of the in­
dustry’s work force; the remaining
workers, about 1 out of 7, are em­
ployed in mining metal ores.

The industry’s white-collar
workers are divided nearly equal­
ly among three major occupation­
al groups— professional and tech­
nical, clerical, and managerial.
Taken together, these three
groups account for the remaining
three-tenths of overall industry
employment. Professional, tech­
nical, and kindred workers are
concentrated largely in the crude
petroleum and natural gas extrac­
tion industry. Most are employed
in occupations such as engineer,
geologist, and technician, and are
engaged in the exploration and
research activities that are so
important to the discovery of oil
and gas fields and new uses of
petroleum products. Two out of
three clerical employees work in
the petroleum and gas extraction
industry. Most are secretaries, of­
fice machine operators, and typ­
ists needed to support profession­
al, technical, and managerial
workers. The following tabulation
shows the estimated distribution
of occupational employment in
the mining industry:

The mining industry employs
only a small number of women
workers; most are in clerical posi­
tions. Seventy percent of all
workers in mining are employ­
ed in blue-collar jobs, primarily
as operatives and kindred work­
ers. Included in the operative
group are miners and mine labor­
ers; mining machinery operators
such as drilling and cutting ma­
chine operators, crusher opera­
tors, conveyor operators, and oil
well drillers; and most other
workers engaged in underground
mining operations. Also included,
and especially important in sur­




Estimated.
employment,
1968
Major occupational group

distribution)

All occupational groups 100
Professional, technical, and
kindred workers..............
10
Managers, officials, and
proprietors ............................
8
Clerical and kindred workers ..
9
Sales workers......................
1
Craftsmen, foremen, and
26
kindred workers ..................
Operatives and kindred
workers1 ................................
44
Service workers ........................
1
Laborers .............................................
1 Includes mine laborers.
N ote.—Because of rounding, sums of individ­
ual items may not equal total.

Employment in the mining in­
dustry is expected to decline mod­
erately through the 1970’s, de­
spite an anticipated substantial
increase in mining output. The in­
creased demand for mining prod­
ucts will be met largely through
the use of more and improved
equipment that will be operated
by a more highly skilled work
force. Even though employment
in the industry as a whole is ex­
pected to decline, different growth
patterns are likely within the in­
dustry. For example, employment
in coal mining has declined
steadily throughout the 1950’s
and 1960’s, and further decreases
are expected during the 1970’s,
although at a slower pace than
in the past. Employment in pe­
troleum and natural gas extrac­
tion also is expected to decline
through the 1970’s. On the other
hand, employment in quarrying
and nonmetallic mining has been
growing and is expected to con­
tinue to rise over the 1970’s. Pop­
ulation growth, rising incomes,
and business activity, together
with the increasing need for con­
struction materials are likely to
bring about a growing demand
for manpower in quarrying and
nonmetallic mining.
589

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

590
Employment in metal mining is
expected to increase slightly
through the 1970’s, reversing a
downward trend.
The statement that follows pro­
vides information on employment
opportunities in the petroleum
and natural gas extraction indus­
try. More detailed information
about occupations that are found
in mining as well as other indus­
tries appears elsewhere in the
Handbook. (See index in back of
book.)

PETROLEUM AND NATURAL
GAS PRODUCTION AND
PROCESSING

N ature and Location of the
Industry

Petroleum is one of the fossil
fuels, having been formed from
the decay of once living matter.
It is extracted mainly in the form
of crude oil and natural gas.
Thousands of companies are in
the petroleum business, most of
them specializing in a single ac­
tivity, such as exploring for gas
or oil, drilling wells, operating
wells, transporting petroleum in
crude form or as finished prod­
ucts, processing gas, and refining
crude oil. Others operate gasoline
service stations or supply natural
gas for heating and cooking.
Much of the petroleum business,
however, is done by a small num­
ber of large firms that are in­
volved in many of the industry’s
activities— from exploring for oil
and gas to selling finished petro­
leum products. These firms pro­
vide a large share of the indus­
try’s jobs.
This chapter deals with the
activities and jobs involved in (1)
finding oil and gas and bringing




it to the surface of the earth, and
(2) converting natural gas to useable products. It excludes petro­
leum refining, and the trans­
porting and marketing of petro­
leum products. Occupations in pe­
troleum refining are discussed in
a separate chapter in the

Handbook.
Petroleum Production. Because
the processes involved in finding
and extracting crude oil and nat­
ural gas are the same, the jobs
and activities involved are similar
up to the point where the gas or
oil well starts producing. In this
chapter, references to “ petroleum
production” also cover the dis­
covery and extraction of natural
gas. Petroleum production in­
cludes three broad fields of work;
exploration, drilling and oilfield
servicing, and well operation and
maintenance. Firms that special­
ize in performing one or more of
these activities under contract to
oil companies employ almost onehalf of all the workers in petro­
leum production. Major oil com­
panies also engage in all of these
production activities.
Since oil is difficult to find—
only rarely are there any signs on
the earth’s surface of its presence
underground— an important part
of petroleum production activity
involves using scientific methods
to search for oil. After scientific
tests are made which indicate the
possible presence of oil beneath
the surface of the earth, a site is
selected and the drilling process
begins.
Before a well can be drilled, a
towerlike steel drilling rig is in­
stalled to support the tools and
pipes that must be lowered into
the well. Most rigs used today are
portable ones brought to the drill­
ing site, but some rigs are built at
the site. Although a few large
firms do some of their own drill­
ing, over 90 percent of this work
is performed by specialized drill­
ing contractors.

A number of other services are
performed in connection with oil­
field drilling. These include build­
ing access roads, hauling supplies,
cementing wells, cleaning and
treating wells, and other special
operations. Much of this work is
handled by contractors.
When oil is reached and the
well is completed, the job of the
drilling crew is finished and that
of the well-operating crew begins.
About half of all petroleum pro­
duction workers operate or main­
tain approximately 685,000 oil
and gas producing wells in the
United States. These wells are op­
erated by thousands of companies
which range in size from large
firms with wells all over the world
to small firms with only a single
well. After oil or gas is brought
out of the ground, it is trans­
ported to refineries or processing
plants by pipelines, ships, barges
and trucks.
Because natural gas, as it flows
from the ground, is difficult to
transmit through pipelines for
long distances due to the various
liquid compounds dissolved in it,
natural gas processing plants,
which remove these liquids, usu­
ally are located at or near gas
fields. The natural gas liquid
compounds — propane,
butane,
ethane, and natural gasoline—
have important uses; for example,
as raw materials for the chemical
industry and oil refineries, and as
a fuel for rural areas. In addition,
natural gas may be compressed
for delivery to pipeline trans­
portation companies, or for use by
oil well operators to force oil out
of the ground.
In 1968 about 280,000 wage
and salary workers were employ­
ed in the United States in petro­
leum production, including the
production and processing of nat­
ural gas. Although drilling for oil
and gas is done in about threefourths of the States, nearly 90
percent of the workers are em-

MINING

ployed in 10 States. Texas is the
leading State in the number of
oilfield jobs, followed by Louisi­
ana, Oklahoma, California, Kan­
sas, Illinois, New Mexico, W yo­
ming, Mississippi, and Colorado.
About 7,000 additional American
workers are employed in foreign
countries by United States oil
companies, particularly in the
Middle East, Africa, Western
Europe, and South America.

Occupations in the Industry
Workers in the petroleum pro­
duction branch of the oil industry
explore for crude oil and natural
gas, drill wells, and operate and
maintain them. These activities
require workers having a wide
range of education and skills. (In
this section, references to oil in­
clude natural gas.)
Exploration. Exploring for oil is
the first step in petroleum pro­
duction. Small crews of special­
ized workers travel to remote
areas to search for geological for­
mations likely to contain oil. Ex­
ploration parties, led by a petro­
leum geologist (D.O.T. 024.081),
study the surface and subsurface
composition of the earth. Geolo­
gists seek clues to the possibility
of oil traps by examining types of
rock formations on and under the
earth’s surface. Besides making
detailed, foot-by-foot surveys, pe­
troleum geologists depend on
aerial exploration for a broad
picture of the surface and sub­
surface features of the area being
explored. They also may obtain
rock samples from the bottom of
the sea in their search for clues
to oil-bearing formations. Geol­
ogists can determine the age of
rocks by measuring their radio­
activity. Sub-surface evidence is
collected by making test drills
and bringing up core samples of
the rocks, clay, and sands that
form the layers of the earth.




591

men (D.O.T. 018.587) assist in
surveying and mapping opera­
tions.
Another way of searching for
oil is through the science of geo­
physics— the study of the inner
characteristics of the earth’s
structure. More than 95 percent
of geophysical exploration is done
by seismic prospecting. The seis­
mograph is a sensitive instrument
which records natural and man­
made earthquakes. Manmade
earthquakes in petroleum explor­
ation are commonly made by ex­
ploding small charges of dynamite
in the ground. The time it takes
for sound waves to reach an un­
derground rock layer and return
indicates the depth of the layer.
The seismograph records such as
formation by wavy lines on a
chart. Increasingly, this informa­
tion is recorded on magnetic tape
which is then placed in a compu­
ter and analyzed automatically.
By setting off explosions at a
number of points, underground
Geologists and petroleum engineers
formations can be mapped with
inspect core sample.
considerable accuracy, thus pro­
From these examinations, geol­ viding a clue to the whereabouts
ogists can draw a cross-section of traps which may contain oil.
map of the underground forma­
A seismograph crew generally
tions being surveyed to pinpoint includes 10 persons, led by a par­
areas where oil may be located. ty chief who is usually a geophys­
Many geologists work in dis­ icist (D.O.T. 024.081). Other
trict offices of oil companies or members of the seismograph
exploration firms where they pre­ crew may include computers
pare and study geological maps. (D.O.T. 010.168), who prepare
They also study core samples col­ maps from the information re­
lected by exploration parties to corded by the seismograph; ob­
find any clue to the presence of servers (D.O.T. 010.168), who op­
oil.
erate and maintain seismic equip­
Exploration parties may in­ ment; prospecting drillers (D.O.T.
clude, in addition to the geologist, 930.782)
and
their
helpers
paleontologists (D.O.T. 024.081), (D.O.T. 930.886), who operate
who study fossil remains in the portable drilling rigs to make
earth to locate oil-bearing sands; holes into which explosive charges
and chemists (D.O.T. 022.081) are placed; and shooters (D.O.T.
and mineralogists (D.O.T. 024.- 931.381), who are in charge of
081), who study physical and placing and detonating explosive
chemical properties of minerals charges.
and rock samples. Planetable op­
Once the oil company has de­
erators (D.O.T. 018.188), drafts­ cided where to drill, it must ob­
men (D.O.T. 010.281), and rod- tain permission to use the land.

592

The
landman
or
leaseman
(D.O.T. 191.118) makes the nec­
essary business arrangements
with owners of land in which his
company is interested.
Another important job in oil
exploration is that of the scout
(D.O.T. 010.168). He keeps his
company informed of all explor­
ing, leasing, drilling, and pro­
duction activity in his area.
Drilling. Despite all the petroleum
exploration methods that have
been developed, there is no device
that actually will locate petrole­
um. Only by drilling can the pre­
sence of oil be proved. Overall
planning and supervision of drill­
ing are usually the responsibilities
of
the
petroleum
engineer
(D.O.T. 010.081). He helps to pre­
pare drilling sites and to select
the methods of drilling. He directs
workers in installing the drilling
rig and machinery. He advises
drilling personnel on technical




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

matters and may stay on the site
until drilling operations are
completed.
There are two methods of drill­
ing a well— rotary drilling and
cable-tool drilling. No matter
which method is used, all wells
are started in the same way.
Rig builders (D.O.T. 869.884)
and a crew of helpers (D.O.T.
869.887) install a drilling rig, the
main purpose of which is to sup­
port the machinery and equiment
which raise and lower the drilling
tools.
The rotary method is used for
drilling deep wells through rock
and clay formations.
In rotary drilling, a revolving
steel drill bit, with cutting teeth
at its lower end, bores a hole in
the ground by chipping and cut­
ting rock. The bit is attached to
a string of jointed pipe (drill
stem), which is rotated by a
steam, diesel, or gasoline engine
or an electric motor. As the bit
cuts through the earth, the drill
stem is lengthened by the addi­
tion of more pipe which is screwed
on at the upper end. A stream of
mud is continuously pumped
through the hollow pipe. This
mixture of clay and water cools
the drill bit, plasters the walls of
the hole to prevent cave-ins, and
floats the cuttings to the surface.
A typical rotary drilling crew
consists of a rotary driller and
four or five helpers. From 15 to
20 workers, divided into three
crews, generally are required to
operate a rig 24 hours a day and
7 days a week. A rotary driller
(D.O.T. 930.782) is in charge of
the work of the crew during his
tour of duty. His major duties in­
clude operating the drilling ma­
chinery which controls drilling
speed and pressure. He also se­
lects the proper drill bit and
keeps a record of operations. He
must be ready to meet any emer­
gency, such as breakdown of equipment or problems caused by

unusual geological formations. A
derrickman (D.O.T. 930.782), se­
cond in charge of the crew, works
on a small platform high on the
rig. When a drill bit becomes dull
and has to be replaced, he catches
the upper ends of the pipe sec­
tions and guides them over to a
rack beside his platform. He may
have several miles of drill pipe
racked up before the worn bit
is brought to the surface.
Other members of a typical ro­
tary drilling crew include rotary
floormen (D.O.T. 930.884), who
guide the lower end of the pipe to
and from the well opening and
connect and disconnect pipe
joints and drill bits. Helpers,
called roughnecks (D.O.T. 930.884), assist floormen in their du­
ties. A fireman (D.O.T. 951.885)
(if steam is used) or engineman
(D.O.T. 950.782) (if diesel or
electric power is used) operates
the engines which provide power
for drilling and hoisting.
An important oilfield worker is
the tool pusher (D.O.T. 930.130),
who acts as foreman of one or
more drilling rigs. He also is in
charge of supplying rig builders
and drilling crews with needed ma­
terials and equipment. Rousta­
bouts (D.O.T. 869.884), or gen­
eral oilfield laborers, or not con­
sidered part of drilling crews but
are used to do odd jobs, such as
cleaning derrick floors and pipes
or constructing and maintaining
roads in oilfields.
In cable-tool drilling, a hole is
broken through rocks by contin­
uously raising and dropping a
heavy, sharpened bit attached to
the end of a cable. Cable-tool
drilling is used mainly to drill
shallow wells in soft rock forma­
tion. Most of it is done in Ken­
tucky, Ohio, West Virginia, Penn­
sylvania, and certain areas of
Texas and Oklahoma. Cable-tool
drilling, however, is becoming ob­
solete as deeper holes are drilled

593

MINING

each year in order to reach the
new oil reserves.
A cable-tool drilling crew usu­
ally consists of a driller and a tool
dresser. The cable-tool driller
(D.O.T. 930.280) is in charge of
all operations during his tour of
duty and maintains a detailed
record of drilling activity. He
controls the force with which the
drilling bit strikes the rocks at
the bottom of the well. He also
supervises and helps in setting up
the machinery and derrick. The
cable-tool dresser (D.O.T. 639.781) , whose job is related to that
of a blacksmith, assists the driller
and maintains the equipment.

Well Operation and Mainte­
nance. Production is ready to be­
gin when oil is found and the
producing equipment installed.
Drill pipe and bit are pulled from
the well and casing and tubing
are lowered. The upper end of the
tubing is fastened to a system of
valves and controls, called a
“ Christmas tree.” Pressure in the
well forces crude oil to the sur­
face, through the Christmas tree,
and into storage tanks. If natural
pressure is not great enough to
force the oil to the surface, pump­
ing or other methods are used to
produce an artificial flow.
Petroleum engineers generally
have charge of overall planning
and supervision of the operation
and maintenance of wells. One of
their principal duties is to pre­
vent waste by deciding which
production method to use and
how fast the oil should flow.
Some companies hire assistants
for the petroleum engineer. These
engineering aides perform routine
duties such as making elementary
calculations, running tests, and
keeping records.
The job of pumper is numeri­
cally the largest occupation in the
oilfield. Pumpers (D.O.T. 914.
782) and their helpers (D.O.T.
914.887) operate and maintain
motors, pumps, and other equip­




ment used to force an artificial
flow of oil from wells. Their chief
duty is to regulate the flow of
oil according to a schedule set
up by the petroleum engineer.
Generally, a pumper operates a
group of wells. Switchers work in
fields where oil flows under nat­
ural pressure and does not re­
quire pumping. They open and
close valves to regulate the flow
of oil from wells to tanks or into
pipelines. Gagers (D.O.T. 914.381) keep track of the amount
of oil flowing into tanks or pipe­
lines. They measure and record
the contents of storage tanks and
take samples of the oil to check
its quality. Treaters (D.O.T.
541.782) make tests of crude oil
for water and sediment. They
remove these impurities from oil
by opening a drain at the base
of the tank or by using special
chemical or electrical equipment.
In many fields, pumping, switch­
ing, gaging, and treating opera­
tions are performed by automatic
controls. Installation of computer
systems at a central site now en­
ables an operator to control the
flow of oil from a large number
of wells into several pipelines.
Many workers are employed in
maintenance operations in oil­
fields. Welders, carpenters, elec­
tricians, and machinists repair
and install pumps, gages, pipes,
and other oilfield equipment.
Roustabouts
perform various
field and well-maintenance jobs
which require little skill but often
involve heavy, hazardous work.

Natural Gas Processing. Oper­
ators have duties very similar to
those of the oil refinery workers.
The dehydration-plant operator
(D.O.T. 541.782) tends an auto­
matically controlled treating unit
which removes water and other
impurities from natural gas. The
gasoline-plant operator, or gaso­
line-plant engineer (D.O.T. 950.782), operates equipment which

removes natural gasoline and sul­
fur from natural gas. The com­

pressor-station operator, or com­
pressor-station engineer (D.O.T.
914.132), operates a compressor
which raises the pressure of the
gas for transmission in the pipe­
lines. The gas-compressor oper­
ator (D.O.T. 950.782), assists
either of the last two employees
named above.
As in oil refineries, many work­
ers in the larger natural gas proc­
essing plants are employed in
maintenance activities. However,
the equipment in such plants is
subject to less corrosion and wear
than that in oil refineries, and it
is generally more automated. As
a result, the instrument repair­
man and the electrician are two
key workers needed to maintain
the instruments that control the
automatic equipment. The wel­
der and his helper also do much
maintenance work in the process­
ing plant. Other workers, whose
jobs include maintenance func­
tions, are engine repairmen and
laborer.
Clerical, administrative, profes­
sional, and technical workers are
a smaller proportion of employ­
ment in the larger gas processing
plants than in oil refineries.
In the numerous smaller natu­
ral gas processing plants, many
workers have multiple skills—
usually combining the skills of
operator and maintenance man.
In addition, there are many very
small plants which are so highly
automated that they are virtu­
ally unattended. Either they are
checked by maintenance workers
or operators at periodic intervals,
or they are monitored continu­
ously by instruments which auto­
matically report malfunctions
and shut down the plant if an
emergency develops.
Other Oilfield Services. Compa­
nies which offer oilfield services
(other than exploration and drill­
ing) on a contract basis provide

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

594
another important source of em­
ployment. Employees in these
companies perform many serv­
ices, including cementing and
cleaning wells, and building
foundations at well locations.
Among these employees are skill­
ed workers such as cementers
(D.O.T. 930.281), who mix and
pump cement into the space be­
tween steel casings and side walls
of the well to prevent cave-ins;
acidizers (D.O.T. 930.782), who
force acid into the bottom of the
well to increase the flow of oil;
perforator operators
(D.O.T.
931.782), who pierce holes in drill
pipes or casings by using sub­
surface “ guns” to make passages
through which oil can flow;
sample-taker operators (D.O.T.
931.781), who obtain samples of
soil and rock formations from
wells to help geologists determine
the presence of oil; and well
puller (D.O.T. 930.883), who re­
move pipes and casings from wells
for cleaning and repairing or for
salvaging.

Offshore Operations. Most ex­
ploration, drilling, and producing
activities are done on land, but
an increasing amount of this work
is done offshore, particularly in
the Gulf of Mexico off the coasts
of Louisiana and Texas. Some ad­
ditional offshore work is being
done in the Pacific Ocean off
California, Oregon, Washington,
and Alaska. Some wells have
been drilled more than 100 miles
from shore and in water more
than 1,000 feet deep. These off­
shore operations require the same
types of drilling crews as are em­
ployed on land operations. In ad­
dition, offshore operations require
employment of radio men, ablebodied seamen, cooks, mess boys,
and pilots for work on drilling
platforms, crewboats, barges, and
helicopters.
(Detailed discussions of profes­
sional, technical, mechanical, and




other occupations found not only
in the petroleum and natural gas
production industry, but in other
industries as well, are given else­
where in the Handbook, in the
sections covering the individual
occupations. See index for page
numbers.)

T rain in g , O th er Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

Exploration.

Most workers in
nonprofessional jobs with an ex­
ploration crew begin as helpers
and advance into one of the spe­
cialized jobs after gaining experi­
ence. Their period of training on
the job may vary from several
months to several years. New
workers usually are hired in the
field by the party chief or by
local company representatives.
For many nonprofessional jobs,
companies hire young men who
have a high school or vocational
school education, including train­
ing or aptitude in mathematics,
drafting, and mechanics. College
students majoring in physical or
earth sciences or in engineering
often are hired for part-time or
summer work with an exploration
crew. This may be a means of
working into a full-time job after
graduation.
For entry into professional oc­
cupations, such as geologist, geo­
physicist, chemist, or engineer,
college training with at least a
bachelor’s degree is required. Pro­
fessional workers usually start at
junior levels and after several
years of experience in field sur­
veys, are eligible for promotion to
the job of party chief. After much
field survey experience they may
get a position of responsibility in
an area or division office and then
perhaps in the central office. Sci­
entists and engineers having re­
search ability, preferably those
with advanced graduate degrees,

may transfer to research or con­
sulting work.
Drilling. Members of drilling
crews usually begin work in the
industry as roughnecks.
As
they acquire experience, they
may advance to more skilled
jobs. In rotary drilling, for ex­
ample, a worker may be hired as
a roughneck, advance to the job
of floorman, and eventually to
derrickman. After several years,
he may become a driller. He then
may be promoted to the job of
tool-pusher, in charge of one or
more drilling crews. Some drill­
ing companies hire high school
and college students for jobs dur­
ing the summer months.
Drilling requires men capable
of performing heavy physical la­
bor. Drilling crew members usu­
ally are between the ages of 20
and 40. Some companies, how­
ever, report that their best drill­
ers are over 50 and even in their
sixties, for the job of driller re­
quires good judgment combined
with practical experience.

Well Operation and Maintenance.
Companies generally hire persons
who live near operating wells for
well operation and maintenance
jobs. They prefer men who have
mechanical ability and a knowl­
edge of oilfield processes. Because
this type of work is less strenuous
and offers the advantage of a
fixed locale, members of drilling
crews or exploration parties who
prefer not to travel often trans­
fer to well operation and mainte­
nance jobs.
New workers may start as
roustabouts and advance to jobs
as switchers, gagers, or pumper
helpers, and later to pumpers.
Training usually is acquired on
the job; at least 2 years of ex­
perience are needed to become
a good all-round pumper.
The
preferred
educational
qualification for a petroleum en­
gineer is a college degree with
specialization in courses on the

595

MINING

petroleum industry. However,
college graduates having degrees
in chemical, mining, or mechani­
cal engineering, or in geology or
other related sciences, sometimes
are hired for petroleum engineer­
ing jobs. Petroleum engineering
aids frequently are former roust­
abouts or pumpers who are given
several months of specialized onthe-job and classroom training.
Information on occupational
training, qualifications, and ad­
vancement in natural gas proc­
essing plants is similar to that
for occupations in petroleum re­
fining, discussed on page 687.

E m ploym ent Outlook
Employment in petroleum and
natural gas production during the
1970’s is expected to continue the
slow decline which began during
the late 1950’s, despite antici­
pated increases in oil and gas
production. The use of data-processing equipment and improved
seismic techniques is expected to
reduce the number of crews
needed in petroleum exploration.
The employment level in oil and
gas field production also should
decline because of the increasing
use of automatic equipment to
control production activities.
About 2,700 new workers in
crude petroleum production op­
erations will be hired each year
during the next decade. These
job openings will result primarily
from the need to replace workers
who retire, die, or transfer to
other fields of work. Although
some untrained workers will be
hired for less skilled jobs, the
greatest demand will be for work­
ers having electrical and me­
chanical training and/or experi­
ence. These skills are becoming
more necessary to maintain and
repair the increasingly complex
equipment used in oil and gas
field production.




Most of the job opportunties
created by replacement needs will
be in the 10 States which to­
gether account for 90 percent of
oilfield jobs— Texas, Louisiana,
Oklahoma, California, Kansas, Il­
linois, New Mexico, Wyoming,
Colorado, Mississippi. And in ad­
dition, a substantial number of
job opportunities should occur as
new oilfields are opened in
Alaska.
Offshore activities have ac­
counted for only a small portion
of total production employment.
However, offshore drilling activi­
ties are expected to continue to
increase during the 1970’s par
ticularly off the coasts of Texas,
Louisiana, C a l i f o r n i a , and
Alaska; and off short drilling ac­
tivities may be extended to
Washington, Oregon, Florida and
to the Atlantic seaboard.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
In 1968, earnings of non-supervisory employees in oil and gas ex­
traction averaged $137.71 a week,
or $3.21 an hour for a 42.9 work­
week. This compares with aver­
age earnings of $122.51 weekly or
$3.01 an hour for all production
workers in manufacturing estab­
lishments.
The work schedule for most
oilfield workers is 40 hours a
week. Drilling operations are per­
formed 24 hours a day, with a
complete crew for each 8 hour
shift. Generally, workers in these
crews receive 15 cents more an
hour for work on the second shift
and 30 cents an hour more for
the third shift. Most establish­
ments provide 8 paid holidays
annually. Paid vacations are
granted according to length of
service— generally 2 weeks after
1 year of service, 3 weeks after
5 years, and 4 weeks after 10
years.

The majority of oilfield em­
ployees do most of their work
outdoors and are exposed to all
kinds of weather. Although some
fields may be near cities, they are
more often far from sizeable com­
munities and are sometimes lo­
cated in swamps or deserts. Drill­
ing employees may expect to
move from place to place since
their work in a particular field
may be completed in less than a
year. Exploration personnel move
even more frequently. They may
be away from home for weeks or
months at a time, living in a
trailer or tent. Workers in well
operation and maintenance often
remain in the same locaton for
long periods.
Most workers in natural gas
processing plants and oil refin­
eries have similar working condi­
tions. Only a moderate amount
of physical effort is involved.
Some workers are required to
open and close valves, to climb
stairs and ladders to considerable
heights, and to work 1 of 3 shifts.
The plants are relatively safe
places in which to work.
Some workers in particular
natural gas processing plants
have unusual working conditions.
They are responsible for main­
taining several small, unattended
automated plants in widely sepa­
rated, isolated locations. They
make periodic trips, of 1-day
duration or more, to check these
automated plants. They travel
over rough, unpaved terrain and
are exposed to all kinds of weath­
er. These maintenance jobs may
be very satisfying to those who
like working outdoors and alone.
In offshore operations, earnings
usually are higher than those in
land operations. Except for drill­
ing activity that is close to shore,
workers living quarters are on
platforms held fast to the ocean
bottom or on ships anchored
nearby.

596
Sources of A dditional Inform ation

Further information concern­
ing jobs, processes, and working




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

conditions in the petroleum in­
dustry can be obtained from the
public relations department of in­
dividual petroleum companies
and from:

American Petroleum Institute,
1271 Avenue of the Americas,
New York, N.Y. 10020.
Washington, D.C. 20036.
National Petroleum Refiners As­
sociation, 1725 DeSales St. NW.,

CONSTRUCTION

The activities of the construc­
tion industry touch nearly every
aspect of our daily lives. The
houses and apartments we live in;
the factories, offices, and schools
in which we work; and the roads
we travel upon are examples of
some of the products of this im­
portant industry. The industry
encompasses not only new con­
struction projects but also in­
cludes additions, alterations, and
repairs to existing structures.
In 1968, about 3.3 million per­
sons were employed in the conAn additional 1.4 million work­
ers are estimated to be either
self-employed— mostly o w n e r s
of small building firms— or are
State and l o c a l government
employees engaged in building
and maintaining our Nation’s
vast highway system.
The contract construction in­
dustry is divided into three major
segments. About half of the work
force is employed by electrical,
air conditioning, plumbing, and
other special trade contractors.
Almost one-third work in the gen­
eral building sector where most
residential, commercial, and in­
dustrial construction occurs. The
remaining one-fifth, are engaged
in building dams, bridges, roads,
and similar heavy construction
projects.
As illustrated in the accom­
panying tabulation, on p. —
workers in all blue-collar occupa­
tions made up nearly four-fifths
of the construction industry em­
ployment in 1968. Craftsmen and
foremen alone account for more
than one-half of the total employ­
ment in this industry— a much
higher proportion than that of
any other major industry. Most
of these skilled workers are em­




ployed as carpenters, painters,
plumbers and pipefitters, con­
struction machinery operators,
and bricklayers, or in one of the
other construction trades. Labor­
ers are the next largest occupa­
tional group and account for 1
out of 6 workers. They provide
material, scaffolding, and general
assistance to the craftsmen at
the worksite. Semiskilled work­
ers (operatives and k i n d r e d
workers), such as truck drivers,
welders and apprentices, repre­
sent about one-tenth of the in­
dustry’s total work force. Man­
agers, officials, and proprietors—
mostly self-employed— also ac­
count for about the same share
of employment. Professional and
technical workers make up slight­
ly less than 5 percent of the work
force employed in construction.
Engineers, together with engi­
neering technicians, draftsmen,
and surveyors account for most
of the employment in this occu­
pational group. Clerical workers,
largely women working as stenog­
raphers, typists, and secretaries,
and in general office work, con­
stitute another 6 percent of the
industry’s employment.

Through the 1970’s, employ­
ment requirements are expected
to rise rapidly in the construction
industry. As the national econ­
omy expands, as population in­
creases, and as personal and corp­
orate incomes rise, the demand
for contract construction activi­
ties are expected to undergo a
substantial increase. Likewise, the
number of construction workers
employed by State and local
highway departments also is ex­
pected to increase because of the
need to meet the demands of the
country’s expanding highway sys­
tems. Even though employment
in the construction industry is
likely to grow, the increasing ap­
plication of the latest technology
in tools, material, and work meth­
ods, together with the rising skill
level of the work force, will make
it possible to increase the level
of construction activity without
a correspondingly large increase
in employment.

Estimated.
employment,
1968
(percent
distribution)

Contract construction is the
major source of employment for
skilled craftsmen such as brick­
layers, painters, carpenters, and
others who are discussed more
fully elsewhere in the Handbook.
For information on these and
similar construction occupations,
see the Building Trades chapter
of the Handbook. For informa­
tion on occupations which are
found in many other industries,
see the index in back of the book.

Major occupational group

All occupational groups .... 100
Professional, technical, and
kindred workers ..................
5
Managers, officials, and
proprietors ............................
12
Clerical and kindred workers ..
6
Sales workers ..........................
(x)
Craftsmen, foremen, and
kindred workers ..................
52
Operatives and kindred
workers .................................
10
Service workers....................
1
Laborers ...................................
16
1
Less than 0.5 percent.

597




MANUFACTURING

Manufacturing is the activity
around which our Nation’s econ­
omy revolves. From factories flow
the goods that have provided a
standard of living unmatched
elsewhere in the world. The prod­
ucts of the manufacturing indus­
tries range in complexity from a
simple plastic toy to an intricate
electronic computer, and in size
from miniature electronic compo­
nents to gigantic nuclear pow­
ered aircraft carriers. Many di­
verse processes are carried out in
manufacturing. Workers refine
ores and petroleum, process foods
and chemicals, print books and
newspapers, spin and weave tex­
tiles, fabricate clothing and foot­
wear, and produce the thousands
of products needed for our per­
sonal and national benefit. Our
society, as we know it today,
could not have reached its pres­
ent level of prosperity without
the goods provided by the manu­
facturing industries.
Nearly 20 million persons
worked in manufacturing— the
largest of the major industries—
in 1968. Within manufacturing,
durable goods industries account­
ed for three-fifths of all workers.
The largest employers in the dur­
able goods industries were the
machinery, transportation equip­
ment, and electrical equipment
industries, and the primary met­
als and fabricated metal indus­
tries. Each of these industries ac­
counted for at least 1 million
workers and ranged from 1.3 mil­
lion in primary metals to more
than 2 million in transportation
equipment. Producers of nondur­
able goods account for another
two-fifths of total employment
in manufacturing. The food proc­
essing industries had the largest
single work force within this
group— 1.8 million workers—




more than one-fifth of all non­
durable goods employment. Oth­
er large employers in the non­
durable goods industries are the
apparel, printing, chemicals, and
textile industries. E m p l o y i n g
fewer than 100,000 workers, to­
bacco manufacturers are the
smallest industry in manufactur­
ing.
In 1968, 55 million women
were employed in manufacturing,
and accounted for more than 1
out of every 5 women who work­
ed. Large numbers are employed
as secretaries, typists, office
machine operators, and in many
other office clerical occupations.
In some industries, such as ap­
parel, tobacco, electrical equip­
ment, textiles, and instrument in­
dustries, women are increasingly
being employed in production
occupations. They account for a
growing proportion of the work
force. Thousands of women hold
jobs as assemblers, sewers, bind­
ery workers, checkers and sort­
ers, inspectors, and other types
of production workers. In heavy
industries such as primary met­
als, transportation equipment
petroleum refining, and lumber
and wood products, women are
employed almost exclusively in
white-collar occupations and con­
sequently make up only a small
part of the total work force.
As illustrated in the following
table, blue-collar jobs made up
over two-thirds of the employ­
ment in manufacturing in 1968.
Operatives and kindred workers
alone accounted for 44 percent of
the work force. Most of these
semiskilled workers were spinners
and weavers (textile industry),
sewing machine operators (ap­
parel and leather industries), ma­
chine tool operators and welders
(metalworking industries), fur-

nacemen and heaters (primary
metals), or operators of the spe­
cialized processing equipment
used in the food, chemical, paper,
and petroleum industries.
Craftsmen, foremen, and kin­
dred workers make up the next
largest group of workers and ac­
count for nearly one-fifth of the
employment in manufacturing in
1968. Many of these skilled work­
ers install and maintain the wide
assortment of machinery and
equipment required in all manu­
facturing industries. Others are
employed in skilled production
occupations and are engaged di­
rectly in the manufacturing proc­
ess. Machinists, for example, are
especially important in the metal­
working industries, as are skilled
inspectors and assemblers. In the
printing and publishing indus­
tries, compositors and typeset­
ters, photoengravers and litho­
graphers, and pressmen make up
a large share of the work force.
Bakers, millers, stillmen, tin­
smiths, millwrights, and tool and
diemakers are a few of the other
important skilled occupations in
manufacturing.
Clerical workers represented the
third highest concentration of
workers— approximately 1 out of
every 8— and in manufacturing
were the largest white-collar oc­
cupational group.
Professional, technical, and
kindred workers accounted for 1
out of every 10 workers employed
in manufacturing. Engineers, sci­
entists, and technicians represent
a large share of the professional
workers employed in manufactur­
ing. These highly trained workers
are required not only to oversee
and guide the production proc­
esses, but also to carry out the
extensive research and develop­
ment activities needed in the
599

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

600
aerospace, electronics, chemical,
petroleum, and other industries.
Other important professional oc­
cupations in manufacturing are
editor and reporter, accountant,
and personnel and labor relations
worker.
Major occupation group

Estimated
Employment,
1968
( percent
distribution)

AH occupational groups...........
Professional, technical,
and kindred workers ....
Managers, officials, and
proprietors ....................
Clerical and kindred
workers ..........................
Salesworkers......................
Craftsmen, foremen, and
kindred workers............
Operatives and kindred
workers ..........................
Service workers................
Laborers ............................

100
10
6
12
2
19
44
2
5

N ote.—Because of rounding, sums of individ­
ual items may not add to total.

Population growth, rising per­
sonal income, and expanding




business activity will stimulate a
substantial increase in the de­
mand for manufactured products
through the 1970’s. Employment
in manufacturing, however, is ex­
pected to increase at a slower
pace or about 11 percent be­
tween 1968 and 1980. The in­
creasing application of modem
technology
to
manufacturing
processes, together with the ris­
ing skill level of the work force,
will make possible substantial in­
creases in production of goods
without a corresponding increase
in the work force. Although the
average rate of employment
growth will be slow, employment
trends of individual industries
within manufacturing will vary
widely. Rubber and miscellaneous
plastics products manufacturing
employment may increase more
than one-third and furniture and

f i x t u r e s employment may in­
crease about 30 percent, far
above the average increase. Sev­
eral
industries
including:
machinery stone, clay and glass;
and apparel; and instruments are
expected to about double the
average employment growth rate
for all manufacturing. On the
other hand, some manufacturing
industries expect employment to
decline. Petroleum refining, ord­
nance, transportation equipment,
lumber and wood products, to­
bacco, food, leather, and textiles
all may decrease in employment
during the 1970’s.
The statements that follow
provide information on employ­
ment opportunities in several of
the manufacturing industries.
More detailed information about
occupations that are found in
many industries appears else­
where in the Handbook. (See in­
dex in the back of the book.)

O C C U P A T IO N S IN A IR C R A F T ,
M IS S IL E , A N D S P A C E C R A F T
M A N U F A C T U R IN G

Known generally as the “ aero­
space” industry, the manufacture
of aircraft, missiles, and space­
craft is among the largest and
most rapidly changing industries
in the country. Some 1.5 million
persons were employed in the in­
dustry in 1968, many of whom
were engaged in work concerned
with developments such as super­
sonic flight and space explora­
tion. These and other activities
in research and development have
made the industry somewhat dif­
ferent than most manufacturing
industries. Sometimes, the manu­
facture of a particular item is
only incidental to discovering
new fields of knowledge. Because
of these priorities, intensive effort
has been required to develop the
materials, products, and the con­
cepts necessary for activities such
as space travel. Continued efforts
to improve and develop aerospace
products and technology are ex­
pected to ensure the country’s
defense capability and further
advances in space exploration.
Because this industry’s prod­
ucts are complex and changing,
scientists, engineers, and techni­
cians represent a larger propor­
tion of total employment than in
most other manufacturing indus­
tries. These workers probably
will account for an even higher
proportion of the industry’s work
force through the 1970’s. How­
ever, employment of certain
skilled, semiskilled, and unskilled
workers is expected to decline.

N ature and Location of the
Industry
Aircraft, missiles, and space­
craft have the same main com­




Electronics technician performs systems
test.

ponents: A frame to hold and
support the rest of the vehicle,
an engine to propel the vehicle,
and a guidance and control sys­
tem. A major difference among
them is that missiles and space­
craft can reach into space and
attain speeds many times that of
sound, whereas aircraft fly in the
earth’s atmosphere and at slower
speeds. Another difference is that
aircraft are manned and missies
and some spacecraft are not.
Types of aircraft vary from
small personal planes, costing not
much more than an automobile,
to
multi-million-dollar
giant
transports and supersonic fight­
ers. Aircraft plants also produce
smaller planes for business and
personal use, and helicopters.
Approximately one-half to twothirds of aircraft production in

dollar value is manufactured for
military use; the rest is for com­
mercial passenger and freight
traffic, private business and
pleasure use, and civilian flying
instruction.
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
purposes such as the support of
ground troops and d e f e n s e
against low flying aircraft. Oth­
ers, such as the Atlas, Titan, and
Minuteman, have intercontinen­
tal ranges of 7,000 miles or more.
Some missiles are designed for
launching from land or under­
ground sites; others, for firing
from aircraft, submarines, or
ships.
Spacecraft are sent aloft car­
rying instruments which can
measure and record conditions in
space and transmit the data to
receiving stations on earth. Man­
ned spacecraft also include a
cabin capsule for astronauts. The
first American space vehicles had
payloads (useful cargo) weighing
only 20 to 30 pounds or less; the
Saturn V launch vehicle is able
to lift almost 150-ton payloads
into near-earth orbit, or send 50
tons to the moon. Some space ve­
hicles probe the space environ­
ment and then fall back to earth.
Others are put into orbit and be­
come artificial satellites around
the earth, sun, or other celestial
bodies. Nearly all of this country’s
missiles and spacecraft are built
for the Air Force, Navy, Army, or
the National Aeronautics and
Space Administration (N A SA ).
Because the aerospace industry
makes many kinds of finished
products, it uses many kinds of
engines, electronic systems, and
other components. Aircraft en­
gines may be reciprocating (pis­
ton), jet, or rocket. Missile en­
gines may be jet or rocket. Space601

602

Precision assembler measures and
recesses computer recording heads.

craft are always rocket powered
because rockets are the most pow­
erful type of engine and can
operate in airless space, whereas
other engine types need oxygen
from the air for combustion. T o­
day’s rocket engines are powered
by chemical propellants, either
liquid or solid. New sources of
rocket propulsion, such as nu­
clear or electric energy, are being
investigated and may be available
in the future. Guidance, control,
and instrument payload systems
are largely electronic. Missies and
spacecraft generally have more
complex guidance and control
systems than aircraft.
An aircraft, missile, or space­
craft is manufactured usually un­
der the technical direction of a
prime contractor. He manages
and coordinates the entire proj­
ect, subject to periodic inspec­
tions by the Federal agency or
the airline ordering the vehicle.
His engineering department pre­
pares design drawings, blueprints,
and other specifications. These
go to the production department,




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

where planners work on the many
details regarding machines, ma­
terials, and operations needed to
manufacture the vehicle in the
numbers
required.
Decisions
must be made as to what part of
the production work will be done
by the prime contractor, and
what part will be subcontracted
to outside firms.
Special tools, dies, jigs, and fix­
tures are required in manufactur­
ing the vehicle. Many sheet-metal
workers, machinists, machine tool
operators, and other metal proc­
essors produce these tools and
the thousands of parts and com­
ponents which make up into the
craft. All parts and equipment
must be inspected and tested
many times, both before and af­
ter they are assembled, and all
assembly work must be thorough­
ly inspected and checked. In ev­
ery stage of the production proc­
ess, assemblers and installers are
needed to fit together, hook up,
and install systems and compo­
nents. After its final assembly,
the vehicle is checked out by a
team of mechanics, flight tested
if an aircraft, and then prepared
for delivery.
Many thousands of subcontrac­
tors participate in the production
of parts and subassemblies that
make up aircraft, missiles, and
spacecraft. Some subcontractors
make individual parts or supplies
such as metal forgings, bearings,
plastic material, rocket fuels, or
special lubricants. Others produce
subassemblies, such as communi­
cations or telemetry equipment,
guidance instruments, or jet en­
gines, and may depend on other
subcontractors to supply parts for
the subassemblies. The prime con­
tractor, too, may manufacture
components of a craft and may
do the final assembly work.
Aerospace plants range in size
from the large factories of major
manufacturers, each with thou­
sands of employers, to the shops

of small subcontractors and sup­
pliers that employ 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 New York, Washington,
Connecticut, Texas, Florida, Ohio,
Missouri, Pennsylvania, Massa­
chusetts, Kansas, Alabama, Mary­
land, and New Jersey.
An estimated 1.5 million peo­
ple— about one-fifth of them
women— were working on aero­
space products in 1968. Aero­
space employment has risen
sharply since 1966, reflecting, in
part, increased requirements as­
sociated with the Vietnam build­
up. About half a million of these
workers were producing missiles
and spacecraft; more than 700,000 were making aircraft, , air­
craft engines, and propellers; and
more than 240,000 worked in the
electronics field producing equip­
ment for aircraft, missiles, and
spacecraft. The remainder, ap­
proximately 85,000 were mostly
civilian employees of the Federal
Government working in the aero­
space field, primarily in the De­
partment of Defense and NASA.
In addition to those employed di­
rectly in the aerospace field,
thousands of other Federal Gov­
ernment workers were engaged in
the negotiation, administration,
and supervision of related con­
tracts.
Workers with many different
kinds of educational backgrounds
and job skills are needed to de­
sign and manufacture aircraft,
missies, and spacecraft. For ex­
ample, engineers and scientists
who have advanced degrees, as
well as plant workers who can
learn their jobs after a few days
or weeks of training, are emp­
loyed.
Occupational n e e d s v a r y
among establishments in the in-

OCCUPATIONS IN AIRCRAFT, MISSILE, AND SPACECRAFT MANUFACTURING

dustry, depending on the work
being done. Research and devel­
opment laboratories e m p l o y
mainly engineers, scientists, and
supporting technicians and crafts­
men. Manufacturers, universities,
independent research organiza­
tions, and Government agencies,
such as the Air Force, Navy,
Army, and NASA, run these
laboratories. 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 be­
low under three major categories:
Professional and technical occu­
pations; administrative, clerical,

and related occupations; and
plant occupations. (Many of the
jobs in this industry are found
in other industries as well and
are discussed in greater detail
elsewhere in theHandbook in the
sections covering individual occu­
pations.)

Professional and Technical Occu­
pations. Before production of an
aircraft, missile, or spacecraft can
begin, a design must be approved.
This requires many experiments
and “ feasibility” studies to deter­
mine how well various design pos­
sibilities meet the conditions un­
der which the vehicle will be op­
erating. 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

Research engineers solve complex problems of modern aircraft systems.




603

flight conditions are simulated.
The next step is to develop a fullsize experimental model or proto­
type, which is thoroughly tested
in the air and on the ground. If
test results are satisfactory, pro­
duction may begin. Many modi­
fications in the craft normally are
made during the course of design
and development, and often even
after production has started.
The pace of discovery and
change is so rapid that much
equipment b e c o m e s 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 missiles and
spacecraft field. An intensive ef­
fort is being made to develop
aerospace vehicles with greater
speeds, ranges, and reliability; en­
gines with more power; and met­
als and plastics with wider capa­
bilities. The industry’s research
and development capability has
encouraged aerospace firms to ap­
ply their abilities to other new
areas of exploration such as
oceanographic research and hy­
drofoil ocean vessels.
Increasing emphasis on re­
search and development makes
the aerospace industry an impor­
tant and growing source of jobs
for engineers, scientists, and
technicians. It is estimated that
in 1968, about one-fourth of all
employees in plants making
aerospace products were engnieers, scientists, and technicians,
a considerably higher proportion
than in most other manufacturing
industries.
Many kinds of engineers and
scientists are employed in aero­
space work. For example, over
30 different college degree fields
are represented among the engi­
neers and scientists employed by
NASA.
Among the more important
types of engineers working in the
industry are electronics, electri-

604
cal, aerospace, chemical, nuclear,
mechanical, and industrial engi­
neers. Some of the type of scien­
tists employed in the industry
include physicist, mathematician,
chemist, metallurgist, psycholo­
gist, physiologist, and astrono­
mer. Aerospace engineers and
scientists work in a wide and var­
ied range of applied fields such
as materials and structures, en­
ergy and power systems, fluid
and flight mechanics, measure­
ment and control systems, com­
munications and data systems,
life sciences and systems, and
space sciences.
Engineers and scientists are as­
sisted by many types of workers
such as draftsmen, mathematics
aids, laboratory technicians, elec­
tronics technicians, research me­
chanics, and research electricians.
They also work with production
planners (D.O.T. 012.188), who
plan the layout of machinery,
movement of materials, and se­
quence of operations so that
manufacturing
processes
will
flow efficiently from one step to
the next; and they work with
technical writers (D.O.T. 139.288) and technical illustrators
(D.O.T. 017.281), who produce
technical manuals and other lit­
erature used to describe the op­
eration and maintenance of air­
craft and spacecraft and their
many parts.

Administrative, Clerical, and Re­
lated Occupations. Managerial
and administrative jobs generally
are comparable with similar jobs
in other industries, except that
they are related most closely to
engineering because of the impor­
tance of research and develop­
ment in the aerospace field. Per­
sonnel in these jobs include ex­
ecutives, responsible for the di­
rection and supervision of re­
search and production; and offi­
cials in departments such as
sales, purchasing, accounting,




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

group of workers engaged in
shaping and finishing metal parts
with machine tools are machin­
ists (D.O.T. 600.280 and .281)
and machine tool o p e r a t o r s
(D.O.T. 609.885). The most
skilled of these are the all-round
Plant Occupations. About half of or general machinists who can
all workers in the aircraft, missile, lay out the work and set up and
and spacecraft field were em­ operate several types of machine
ployed in plant jobs in 1968. tools. They perform machining
Plant jobs can be classified in the operations of a highly varied and
following groups: Sheet-metal nonrepetitive nature. They are
work; machining and tool fabrica­ employed most frequently in de­
tion; other metal processing; as­ partments engaged in experi­
sembly and installation; inspect­ mental and prototype production.
Machine tool operators are em­
ing and testing, flight checkout;
and materials handling, mainte­ ployed in the large-volume pro­
duction of metal parts. They gen­
nance, and custodial.
erally specialize in the operation
Sheet-Metal Occupations. Sheet- of a single type of machine tool
metal workers shape parts from such as a lathe, drill press, or
sheet metal by hand or machine milling machine. The more skilled
methods. When hand methods machine tool operators are able
are used, the workers shape the to set up the work on a machine
part by pounding them with mal­ and handle difficult and varied
lets and by bending, cutting, and jobs. The less skilled operators
punching them with handtools. usually do more repetitive work.
Machinists and machine tool
Machine methods involve the use
of power hammers and presses, operators represent a higher pro­
saws, tube benders, and drill portion of the work force in en­
presses. The all-round sheet-met­ gine and propeller plants, which
al worker (D.O.T. 804.281) lays are basically metalworking estab­
out the sequence of operations lishments, than in plants perform­
on the basis of blueprints and ing the final assembly of air and
other engineering information. space vehicles. Among engine
He then fabricates complicated plants, those manufacturing recip­
metal shapes, using handtools or rocating engines do relatively
machines. Less complex parts, as more machining and less sheetwell as those produced in large metal work than those producing
numbers, are fabricated by less jet or rocket engines.
skilled sheet-metal workers or
Many of the plants in the aero­
workers who specialize in oper­ space industry make a large pro­
ating a single machine. They portion of the jigs, fixtures, tools,
have titles such as power brake and dies they use. Fabrication of
operator (D.O.T. 617.380), pow­ these items requires skilled met­
er hammer operator (D.O.T. al-processing workers, chiefly jig
617.782) , power shear operator and fixture builders (D.O.T.
(D.O.T. 615.782 and 615.885), 761.381) and tool and die makers
punch press operator (D.O.T.
(D.O.T. 601.280). Jig and fixture
615.782) , and profile cutting ma­ builders make the workholding
chine operator (D.O.T. 816.782). and tool-guiding devices used in
production and assembly opera­
Machining and tool fabrication tions. On the basis of information
occupations. Another important received from the engineering depublic relations, advertising, and
industrial relations. Many thou­
sands of clerks, secretaries, stengraphers, typists, tabulating ma­
chine operators, and other office
personnel also are employed.

OCCUPATIONS IN AIRCRAFT, MISSILE, AND SPACECRAFT MANUFACTURING

605

processing jobs have titles such
as heat treater (D.O.T. 504.782),
painter (D.O.T. 845.781), and
plater (D.O.T. 500.380).

Assembly and installation occu­
pations Assembly and installa­

partment, they plan the sequence
of metal machining operations in­
volved in making a jig and carry
the job through to completion.
Tool and die makers make the
cutting tools and fixtures used in
machine tool operations, and the
dies used in forging and punch
press work. They must be ex­
perts in the use of machine tools.

Other metal-processing occupa­
tions. Other metalworkers, such
as tube benders, riveters, and
welders also are employed. Tube
benders (D.O.T. 709.884) form
tubings used for oil, fuel, hy­
draulic, and electrical conduit
lines. Riveters (D.O.T. 800.884)
and welders (D.O.T. 810.782 and
.884; 811.782 and .884; 812.884
and 813.380 and .885) join fabri­
cated parts by hand or machine




tion workers are a major occupa­
tional group, employed in prac­
tically all plants in the industry.
Many work in factories produc­
ing engines, electronic equip­
ment, and auxiliary components,
but the majority are found in
plants that assemble air or space
craft into completed form. They
perform final assembly work
such as the fitting together of
major subassemblies and the in­
stalling of major components. In
aircraft, for example, this work
involves joining wings and tail
to the fuselage and installing the
engine and auxiliary equipment
such as the fuel system and flight
controls. In the course of their
duties, assemblers perform oper­
ations such as riveting, drilling,
filing, bolting, soldering, cement­
ing, and gluing.
A large proportion of assem­
blers are semiskilled workers do­
ing repetitive work, but some are
riveting and by electric arc, gas, skilled mechanics and installers.
Many of the latter perform di­
or electric resistance welding.
Additional metal fabricating is versified assembly or installation
performed by skilled foundry operations, and often work on ex­
workers such as patternmakers, perimental, prototype, or special
molders, and coremakers. Drop craft. They assemble, take apart,
hammer operators and other inspect, and install complex me­
forge shop workers are employed chanical and electronic assemblies.
They read blueprints and inter­
in the forging departments.
Many aircraft, missile, and pret other engineering specifica­
spacecraft parts are chemically tions. They may be called final
and heat-treated during several assemblers of complete aircraft
(D.O.T. 806.781), missile assem­
stages of their manufacture to
bly mechanics or rocket assembly
clean, change, or protect their
surface or structural condition. mechanics (D.O.T. 625.281).
Sheet-metal parts are heattreated
Some skilled assemblers are
to keep the metal soft and malle­ employed in plants which produce
able while it is being worked into relatively large numbers of air­
the required shape. Many proc­ craft and missiles rather than a
esses, such as painting and plat­ few experimental types. These
ing, are used on the surfaces of assemblers usually specialize in
parts. Workers in these metal­ one field of work or more. They

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

606

heating and ventilating, and rig­
ging and controls.

Inspecting and testing occupa­
tions. Because aircraft, missies,

Engine installer makes propeller
adjustments.

often are assisted by less skilled
assemblers who do the more rou­
tine work. For example, a class
A armament assembler (D.O.T.
801.381) typically doesworksuch
as assembling, installing, and
alining power turrets, weapons,
gun cameras, and related acces­
sories. Lower rated armament as­
semblers typically do work such
as uncrating and cleaning weap­
ons, loading ammunition, instal­
ling armor plate, and placing
parts in jigs. Power plant install­
ers (D.O.T. 621.381), sometimes
known as engine mechanics, in­
stall, aline, and check the various
types of engines and accessories.
Skilled electrical a s s e m b l e r s
(D.O.T.
728.884), sometimes
called electricians, install, hook
up, and check major units in elec­
trical or radio systems. They are
assisted by less skilled assem­
blers, who do the more routine
installations and wire routings by
following standard wiring dia­
grams and charts. Assemblers
also specialize in other systems
such as plumbing, hydraulic,




parts and materials purchased
from different sellers.
In the production department,

machined

and spacecraft are extremely
complex, thousands of painstak­
ing inspections and tests must be
made as each component and
part moves toward final assembly
of the whole system. Inspections
are made not only by employees
of the manufacturers but also by
civilian employees of Federal
agencies which have contracted
for the equipment.
Some inspectors specialize in
examining materials and equip­
ment purchased from the out­
side; others inspect components
during fabrication and subassem­
bly within their own plants; still
others inspect completed craft af­
ter their final assembly. Many in­
spection jobs require highly
skilled workers. On the other
hand, some tests are made by
automatic equipment which can
be run by relatively unskilled per­
sons. Such equipment not only
checks the component or assem­
bly under test but may run simul­
taneous checks on itself.
Some of the most skilled in­
spections, especially in final as­
sembly plants, are outside pro­
duction inspectors (D.O.T. 806.381). 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
engineering departments
and
supplying companies. Other in­
spectors, frequently known as
receiving inspectors (D.O.T. 806.384), with less responsibility
than outside production inspec­
tors, check purchased materials
and parts for conformity with
b l u e p r i n t s , armed services
requirements, and other estab­
lished standards. They operate
testing equipment and must be
familiar with specifications of the

parts

inspectors

(D.O.T. 609.381) determine, by
the use of precision testing in­
struments, whether or not a part
has been machined properly to
conform to blueprint specifica­
tions. They also may test for
hardness and porosity and deter­
mine the “ machineability” of
castings and forgings. Fabrication
inspectors (D.O.T. 807.381) are
generally
skilled
sheet-metal
workers. They inspect fabricated
sheet-metal work and complex
parts which have required num­
erous fabricating operations.
As the parts are fitted togeth­
er, they undergo numerous in­
spections by assembly inspectors
(D.O.T. 806.381). These inspec­
tors are employed, for the most
part, in the later stages of the
assembly process. They usually
inspect complete major assem­
blies and installations, such as
fuselage, wing, and nose sections,
to insure their proper final fitting.
They also check the functioning
of systems such as hydraulics,
plumbing, and controls. Less
skilled assembly inspectors usu­
ally check subassemblies.

Flight c h e c k o u t

occupations.

Checking out an aircraft or space­
craft before its first flight re­
quires a team of mechanics hav­
ing different levels and types of
skills. Sometimes the checkingout process involves making re­
pairs or returning the craft to the
plant for repairs. The chief me­
chanic 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 field
or more. For example, engine me­
chanics specialize in checking out
the powerplant, including the en-

OCCUPATIONS IN AIRCRAFT, MISSILE, AND SPACECRAFT MANUFACTURING

607

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

Production mechanic tightens small bolt in forward cockpit area.

gine, propellers, and oil and fuel
systems. They use handtools,
testing equipment, and precision
measuring instruments. The elec­
tronics checkout men perform or
supervise the final operational
checkout of systems such as ra­
dio, radar, automatic pilot, fire
control, and complete electronic
guidance systems. Other skilled
workers may specialize in check­
ing out and repairing armament,
instruments, rigging and controls,
plumbing, and hydraulic systems.
In some cases, less skilled me­
chanics help conduct tests and
make repairs.

Materials handling, maintenance,




and custodial occupations. Aero­
space plants employ large num­
bers of materials handlers such
as truckdrivers, crane operators,
shipping clerks, stock clerks, and
tool crib attendants. Mainten­
ance workers, who keep equip­
ment and buildings in good oper­
ating
condition
and
make
changes in the layout of the
plant, include maintenance me­
chanics, millwrights, electricians,
carpenters, plumbers, painters,
and welders. Guards, firemen, and
janitors make up a major portion
of the plant’s protective and
custodial employees.

A college degree in engineering
or in one of the sciences usually
is the minimum requirement for
engineering and scientific jobs in
the aerospace industry. A few
workers may get jobs as profes­
sional 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 graduates
in many different degree fields
may qualify for professional jobs
in the industry. Regardless of his
degree field, the undergraduate
student preparing for professional
aerospace work is well advised to
get as solid a background as pos­
sible in fundamental concepts
and basic general areas of engi­
neering and science. Mathematics
and physics courses are especially
important, since these sciences
provide the necessary language
understood by the variety of engi­
neers and scientists working on
any given project. Education or
training in the more specialized
fields of the aerospace industry
generally is received in graduate
school or on the job.
An increasing number of semiprofessional workers, such as
electronics technicians, engineer­
ing aids, draftsmen, production
planners, and tool designers, re­
ceive training for their jobs
through 2 years of formal educa­
tion in a technical institute or
junior college. Others qualify
through several years of diversi­
fied shop experience.
Training
requirements
for
plant jobs vary from a few days
of on-the-job instruction to sev­
eral years of formal apprentice­
ship. Apprenticeship programs
develop craftsmen such as ma-

608
chinists, tool and die makers,
sheetmetal workers, patternmak­
ers, aircraft mechanics, and elec­
tricians. These programs vary in
length from 3 to 5 years, depend­
ing on the trade; during this time,
the apprentice handles work of
progressively increasing difficulty.
Besides on-the-job experience, he
receives classroom instruction in
subjects related to his craft. Such
instruction for a machinist ap­
prentice, for example, would in­
clude courses in blueprint read­
ing, mechanical drawing, shop
mathematics, trade theory, phys­
ics, safe working practices, and
other subjects.
Many levels of skill are re­
quired for other factory jobs.
Workers who have little or no pre­
vious 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 experience in addition
to a high school or vocational
school education or its equiva­
lent. Skilled assemblers must be
able to read and interpret e n g i ­
neering blueprints, schematic dia­
grams, and production illustra­
tions.
Skilled inspectors often have
several years of machine shop ex­
perience. They must be able to
install and use various kinds of
testing equipment and instru­
ments, read blueprints and other
engineering specifications, and
use shop mathematics. New work­
ers who have little or no experi­
ence in shop trades also may be
hired and trained for jobs re­
quiring less skilled inspectors.
Mechanics who perform the fi­
nal checkout of aircraft and
spacecraft qualify for their jobs
in several ways. Many gain exper­
ience as mechanics by working in
the earlier stages of the plant’s
production line before final check­
out of the craft. Others receive all
their training in checkout work,




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

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 mechanics, working
under the supervision of the chief
mechanic, usually are required to
have at least 2 years’ experience.
Workers having less experience
serve as helpers or assistants and
learn the mechanic’s skills on the
job and through plant training
courses.
Because the manufacture of
their
complex
and
rapidly
changing products requires work­
ers who are highly trained and
aware of new developments, the
majority of aerospace plants sup­
port some kind of formal worker
training. Instruction of this type
supplements day-to-day job ex­
perience and helps workers ad­
vance more rapidly to higher
skills and better paid work. Many
of the industry’s major producers
conduct educational and training
classes themselves; others pay tu­
ition and related costs for outside
courses taken by their employees;
and some do both. Some classes
are held during working hours, in
which case trainees are paid for
class time; other classes are con­
ducted after working hours.
Courses are available for practi­
cally every occupational group
and cover many skills and areas
of knowledge. Examples of sub­
jects typically offered include
blueprint reading, drafting, weld­
ing, aircraft maintenance and re­
pair, electronic data processing,
shop mathematics, supervisory
practices, and safe working prac­
tices. Most trainees take short­
term courses designed to meet
immediate skill needs. Only a
relatively few employees are en­
rolled in long-term programs
scheduled to run for several
years, such as apprenticeship.

Em ploym ent Outlook
Employment in the aerospace
industry is expected to approxi­
mate current (1968) levels or de­
cline slightly by the late 1970’s.
However, there still will be tens
of thousands of job opportunities
annually in this large field, stem­
ming primarily from the need to
replace workers who transfer to
other fields of work, retire, or die.
Retirements and deaths alone
will result in roughly 25,000 job
openings each year during the
next decade.
Products of the aerospace in­
dustry have been developed pri­
marily to assure our national se­
curity and to advance our goals
in the conquest of space. The in­
dustry’s future, therefore, de­
pends largely on the level of Fed­
eral expenditures. Changes in
these expenditures usually have
been accompanied by sharp fluc­
tuations in aerospace employ­
ment. In the past, many workers,
including some scientists, engi­
neers, and technicians, have been
laid off during production cut­
backs. The outlook in this indus­
try is based on the assumption
that defense expenditures (in
constant dollars) in the late
1970’s will be somewhat higher
than the level prior to the Viet­
nam buildup, approximating the
level of the early 1960’s.
If they should differ substanti­
ally, the demand for workers in
the aerospace industry wil be af­
fected accordingly.
Changes in the relative impor­
tance of various segments of aero­
space activity may be expected
during the next decade. Employ­
ment levels in aircraft manufac­
turing by the late 1970’s may be
below the current level. Employ­
ment in the industry has in­
creased substantially between
1966 and 1968, reflecting the con­
tinually increasing demand for
civil aircraft superimposed upon

OCCUPATIONS IN AIRCRAFT, MISSILE, AND SPACECRAFT MANUFACTURING

the critical demands of the Viet
Nam conflict. Jobs in the space­
craft field may increase moderate­
ly because of space exploration.
Relatively stable employment is
anticipated in plants that produce
electronic units for this industry.
Expenditures for research and
development should continue at
the current high level or rise
slightly.
Employment opportunities will
be relatively more favorable for
workers such as engineers, sci­
entists, draftsmen, electronics
technicians, mathematics aids,
and research craftsmen. Many
job openings in these occupations
will become available not only in
manufacturing but also in univer­
sity laboratories and independent
research organizations working
on aerospace contracts, and in
Federal agencies such as the Air
Force, Navy, Army, and NASA.
Some job openings also will be­
come available for skilled plant
personnel such as machine re­
pairmen. Because of the contin­
uing emphasis on custom produc­
tion of many diversified products,
employment of semiskilled and
unskilled assembly line workers is
expected to decrease.

Earnings and W orking Conditions

Plant workers’ earnings in the
aerospace industry are higher
than those in most other manu­
facturing industries. In 1968, for
example, production workers in
plants making aircraft and parts
earned on the average $152.04 a
week or $3.62 an hour; production
workers in all manufacturing in­
dustries as a whole averaged
$122.51 a week or $3.01 an hour.
Production workers in the Depart­
ment of Defense and other Fed­
eral agencies receive wages equal




to prevailing rates paid for com­
parable jobs by local private em­
ployers.
Earnings of professional and
technical workers in the aero­
space field are higher than those
for similar workers in most other
industries because of the rapid
growth of research and develop­
ment activity for missiles and
spacecraft, which has created an
urgent need for well-qualified en­
gineers, scientists, and techni­
cians. (General information on
earnings of professional and tech­
nical personnel may be found in
the sections on individual occu­
pations in the Handbook.)
The following tabulation indi­
cates an approximate range of
hourly wage rates for selected oc­
cupations in mid-1968, obtained
from the collective bargaining
agreements of a number of major
aerospace companies; these rates
do not include incentive earnings.
The ranges in various jobs are
wide, partly because wages within
an occupation vary according to
workers’ skills and experience,
and partly because wages differ
from plant to plant, depending
upon type of plant, locality, and
other factors.
Aircraft mechanics ...........$2.45 - $3.80
Assemblers ........................ 2.40 - 3.50
Electronics technicians..... 2.90 - 3.95
Heat treaters ..................... 2.40- 3.65
Inspectors and testers....... 3.35 - 4.10
Jig and fixture builders .... 2.50 - 4.10
Laboratory technicians..... 2.40 - 3.95
Machine tool operators..... 2.40 - 3.70
Machinists ......................... 2.45- 3.90
Maintenance craftsmen .... 2.40- 3.95
Riveters ............................. 2.50 - 3.90
Tool and die makers......... 2.85 - 4.10
Welders ............................. 2.45- 3.70

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 gener­
ally get 8 to 10 paid holidays a
year and 1 week of paid sick

609

leave. Other major benefits in­
clude life insurance; medical, sur­
gical, and hospital insurance; ac­
cident and sickness insurance;
and retirement pensions. Fringe
benefits in Federal aerospace em­
ployment are comparable with
those in the rest of the industry.
Most employees work in mod­
ern factory buildings which are
clean, light, and airy. Some work
is done outdoors. Operations,
such as sheetmetal processing,
riveting, and welding, may be
noisy, and some assemblers may
work in cramped quarters. Aero­
space plants are comparatively
safe working places; the injuryfrequency rate in 1967 averaged
only about one-third of that for
manufacturing as a whole.
Most plant workers in the aero­
space field are union members.
They are represented by several
unions, among them the Inter­
national Association of Machin­
ists and Aerospace Workers; the
International
Union,
United
Automobile, Aerospace and Agri­
cultural Implement Workers of
America; and the International
Union of Electrical, Radio and
Machine Workers. Some crafts­
men, guards, and truck drivers
are members of unions which re­
present their specific occupational
groups.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

Additional information about
careers in the aerospace field may
be obtained from:
National Aeronautics and Space
Administration,
Washington,
D.C. 20546.
Aerospace Industries Association
of America, Inc., 1725 DeSales
St. NW., Washington, D.C.
20036.

610

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

International Association of Ma­
chinists and Aerospace Workers,
1300 Connecticut Ave. NW.,
Washington, D.C. 20036.

tural Implement Workers of
America, 8000 East Jefferson
Ave., Detroit, Mich. 48214.

International Union, United Auto­
mobile, Aerospace and Agricul­

International Union of Electrical,
Radio and Machine Workers,




1126 16th St. NW., Washington,
D.C. 20036.
Electronics Industries Association,
2001 Eye St. N.W., Wahington,
D.C. 20006.

EM PLO YM EN T O U TLO O K AND
O C C U P A T IO N S IN T H E
A LU M IN U M IN D U S T R Y

About 93,000 workers were em­
ployed in the aluminum industry
in 1968. Employment was con­
centrated mainly in the rolling
and extruding sector, although in­
dividual primary reduction plants
in some cases employed more
workers than rolling and extrud­
ing plants.
Considered a specialty metal
having limited application only
a short time ago, aluminum today
is mass-produced in quantities
second only to iron and steel. It
is used in products ranging from
appliances and cooking utensils
to automobiles and aircraft and
aerospace applications. Alumi­
num siding, containers, and elec­
trical cables are among the more
recent applications of this versa­
tile metal. During 1968, the in­
dustry produced about 6.5 bil­
lion pounds of primary aluminum
— over twice the output of only
10 years earlier.
The use of aluminum is growing
rapidly because of its natural
properties, the industry’s strong
research and development activi­
ties, and its aggressive marketing
program. Some of aluminum’s
qualities are its light weight, good
corrosion resistance, high strength
to weight ratio (in alloy form),
good heat reflectivity, electrical
conductivity and ductility. The
major aluminum consuming in­
dustries are construction and
building supplies, transportation
equipment (autos, trucks, rail,
aircraft, ships), electrical and
communications, consumer dur­
ables (refrigerators, washing ma­
chines, and others), containers
and packaging, and machinery
and equipment.
This chapter describes occupa­
tions in the primary aluminum




industry which comprises plants
engaged in producing aluminum
and aluminum alloys from alumi­
num oxide (alumina). It also de­
scribes occupations in plants en­
gaged in rolling, drawing, and ex­
truding aluminum and aluminumbase alloys. The so called secon­
dary aluminum industry, which
produces aluminum primarily
from aluminum scrap, is excluded
as are the mining of bauxite, fluor­
spar, and other raw materials, and
the refining of bauxite to alumina.
Occupations concerned with cast­
ing, stamping, forging, machining,
and fabrication of aluminum are
discussed separately in the Hand­
book chapters dealing with forg­
ing and machining occupations.
Some companies that produce
aluminum are integrated com­
pletely— that is, they operate
bauxite mines; maintain a fleet
of ships to transfer the ore to proc­
essing plants; refine the ore into
alumina; reduce alumina to alu­
minum; and form aluminum into
semifinished and finished prod­
ucts by rolling and a wide variety
of fabricating methods. Other
companies fabricate metal that
they produce but buy alumina
from other sources. The great ma­
jority of companies do not pro­
duce the basic metal, but pur­
chase aluminum from primary or
secondary (scrap) sources and
form the metal into semifinished
and finished products.
The South Central area of the
country, which includes Alabama,
Arkansas, Louisiana, Tennessee,
and Texas leads in the production
of primary aluminum, although
the State of Washington is the
Nation’s largest producer. Plants
within its borders represent about

one-fifth of national primary alu­
minum capacity. The North Cen­
tral area, consisting of Illinois,
Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio, is
the center for aluminum rolling,
drawing, and extruding plants.

Occupations in the Industry

Employment in the aluminum
industry falls into several cate­
gories. First, there is a wide
assortment of jobs directly con­
cerned with smelting and trans­
forming aluminum into industrial
and consumer products. Another
group of occupations maintain
and service the complex machin­
ery and equipment used in the
manufacturing process. In addi­
tion, a fairly large group of cleri­
cal, sales, professional, technical,
administrative, and supervisory
positions is needed to facilitate
the production process and to op­
erate the companies.
About 4 out of 5 workers em­
ployed in the industry work in
production and maintenance oc­
cupations. They produce alumi­
num from alumina and form the
metal, maintain plant machinery
and equipment, and facilitate the
flow of materials throughout the
plant. The remaining one-fifth
are in clerical, sales, professional,
technical,
administrative,
re­
search, managerial, and supervis­
ory occupations.
Due to the relatively high tem­
peratures associated with alumi­
num reduction and the strenuous
nature of some tasks necessary for
its production, women make up
only about 3 percent of the work
force in primary aluminum plants.
Although most women employed
in the industry work in clerical,
secretarial, and other office jobs,
they constitute about 9 percent
of the work force in rolling and
drawing plants and are found in
jobs such as graders, sorters, and
inspectors.
611

612

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

Tapper breaks hole in electrolytic crust with automatic pot puncher.

Processing O ccupations
The largest proportion of em­
ployees in the alumium industry
are in factory jobs processing the
metal. To illustrate the types of
processing occupations found in
the industry, a description of the
major steps in the production (re­
duction) and fabricating of alu­
minum follows.
To produce aluminum, the
metal is separated from the ox­
ygen with which it is combined in
alumina by smelting. This process
involves mixing alumina and other
additives in a bath of cryolite
(sodium aluminum fluoride) and
occurs in deep retangular cells
or “ pots” of thermally insulated
steel, lined with carbon. The cells
or furnaces are generally about




20 feet long, 10 feet wide, and
about 3 feet deep.
Reduction— The cells contain­
ing molten cryolite are lined with
carbon which serve as the cathode
or one electrode. Depending on
the type of cell used, either one
large block of carbon (Soderberg)
or a number of small blocks of
carbon (prebaked) suspended
from the top of the cell acts as
the anode or other electrode. D i­
rect electrical current is intro­
duced, and the alumina is
reduced to aluminum and accu­
mulates at the bottom of the cell.
The oxygen is deposited on the
anode and is oxidized to carbon
dioxide.
Anode men (D.O.T. 630.884)
are responsible for maintenance
of the anodes on the reduction
cells. Among their duties are pull­

ing pins from the anodes by
means of hydraulic pullers and
cleaning scales from the pins
using a sandblasting device. They
may replace the pins using a steel
driver.
Pot liners (D.O.T. 519.884)
rebuild the Soderberg type anode
and reline the reduction furnaces
when they burn out. To line the
pot, the pot liners pour water into
it to loosen the sediment. They
then dig out the material using
jackhammers or diggers. Next,
they lay a brick base in the pot
floor and drop carbon mix into the
cell. The potliners line the walls
and floor with carbon blocks and
tamp carbon paste into cracks
using a pneumatic hammer.
Potmen (D.O.T. 512.885) tend
the reduction pots and are re­
sponsible for their continuous op­
eration. Each potman attends a
number of different cells. During
the operation of the pot, the alu­
mina gradually is consumed.
When the dissolved alumina con­
tent of one of the cells decreases
from approximately 5 percent to
2 percent of the electrolyte, the
electrical resistance of the pot
rises suddenly from about 5 to 30
volts or more causing an electric
bulb on the side of the pot to
lightup. This development, known
as “ anode effect,” signals the pot­
man to break the crust of the
electrolyte bath and stir in hot
alumina which has been lying on
the surface. This operation causes
the voltage to return to normal
levels and the crust reforms. In
operating the pots, operators try
to reduce anode effects by adding
specified amounts of materials at
designated time intervals.
Every 24 to 72 hours, part of
the molten aluminum is syphoned
from the bottom of the reduction
cells into huge cast-iron crucibles
which have airtight lids. The tap­
per (D.O.T. 514.884) and tapper
helper (D.O.T. 514.887) signal
the hot-metal crane operator

EMPLOYMENT OUTLOOK AND OCCUPATIONS IN THE ALUMINUM INDUSTRY

(D.O.T. 921.883) to place the ov­
erhead crane near the pot to be
tapped. They then break a hole
in the electrolytic crust using an
automatic pot puncher. One end
of a curved cast iron tube is in­
serted into the pot, the other into
a crucible of up to 8,000 pounds
capacity. A compressed air hose
is attached to the siphon and the
molten metal is drawn into the
crucible. After the completion of
several tappings, an overhead
crane removes the loaded crucible
to a remelting furnace.
A scaleman (D.O.T. 502.887)
weighs and takes samples of the
molten metal for laboratory
analysis and separates grades and
types of alloys to be blended with
the molten aluminum. The molten
metal in the crucibles is poured
into a “ charging hearth” or re­
melt furnace. A remelt operator
(D.O.T. 512.885) adds specified
portions of aluminum scrap and
molten metal from other cruci­
bles. Other metals are added (al­
loying) to the furnace to obtain
desired properties.
Final steps in the preparation
of the metal are fluxing and de­
gassing. A compound is added to
flux the molten metal, forcing
oxides of aluminum to the surface
for a hand skimmer to remove.
Before the molten metal is re­
moved from the charging furnace,
nitrogen or chlorine gas is added
to eliminate the hydrogen gas.
After the alloying and fluxing
processes, the metal is transferred
to the second compartment of the
furnace, the “ holding” section,
until a sufficient supply is ob­
tained for pouring. The d.c. cast­
ing operator (D.O.T. 514.782)
has charge of the pouring station
in which the molten metal is cast
into ingots. He controls the cool­
ing condition of the casting unit
by maintaining a constant level
of metal in the molds and operates
a series of instruments which
spray water against the molds to




produce ingots of uniform crystal­
line structure.
Rolling— Over half of aluminum
wrought products consist of plate,
sheet and strip, which are pro­
duced by rolling. The first step in
rolling operations is to remove sur­
face impurities from the ingot.
The scalper operator (D.O.T.
605.782) manipulates levers of a
scalper machine and cuts approxi­
mately one-fourth inch layers of
metal from the ingots. T o improve
corrosion resistance of the surface,
ingots are sometimes clad with
thin layers of pure aluminum.
These layers which are clamped

613

on the sides of the ingot join with
the central layer of the sheet dur­
ing the rolling process. The ingots
are brought to proper working
temperatures for rolling by heat
treating. Overhead cranes lower
the ingot vertically into furnaces,
or “ soaking pits” where they are
sealed hermetically for 12 to 18
hours. The soaking pit operator
(D.O.T. 613.782) manages the
furnace and sets controls to ad­
just temperature and heating
time.
The huge rolling ingots are po­
sitioned on the “ breakdown” or
hot rolling mill where they are

Aluminum is tapped into crucible.

614
converted into elongated slabs of
aluminum. Reduction operations
are controlled by trained rolling
mill operators (D.O.T. 613.782)
who manipulate the ingots back
and forth between powerful roll­
ers of a large tandem hot revers­
ing mill until they are reduced in
thickness to about 3 inches. The
slabs then move down the line on
rollers to additional hot mills
where they are worked down to
about one-eighth of an inch thick.
At the end of the hotline, a coiler
operator (D.O.T. 613.885) tends
a coiler which automatically
winds the metal onto reels.
Coiled aluminum is cooled at
room temperature and then cold
rolled to a still thinner size. Cold
rolling assures a better surface
finish and increases the metal’s
strength and hardness. Since con­
tinual cold rolling could make the
metal too brittle, intermediate
steps of heat treating are neces­
sary. Heat treating or annealing
takes place in furnaces under the
control of an annealer (D.O.T.
504.782).
After annealing, the metal may
be further cold rolled to a speci­
fied thickness and then heat
treated again to soften it for fu­
ture fabrication. T o relieve in­
ternal stress from rolling and an­
nealing or contour defects, the
finished sheet or plate may be
placed in large stretchers which
pull the metal from end to
end. Stretcher-leveler-operators
(D.O.T. 619.782) and stretcherleveler-operator helpers (D.O.T.
619.886) position the metal in a
stationary vise, determine stretch
requirements to meet production
specifications, and operate the
machine.
During both production and
fabricating processes inspections
of the metal are conducted to
assure quality and consistency of
the product. Radiographic test­
ing and ultrasonic testing are two
processes used for inspection. Ra­




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

diographers (D.O.T. 199.381) op­
erate various types of X-ray
equipment to take radiographs of
the metal. Computers monitor op­
erations and adjust any differ­
ences that may occur between
scheduled temperatures, diameter
of metals, and speed of operations.
Fabrication of Rods, Bars, and
Structural's— In rod and bar mills,
square castings called “ blooms”
are heated to make them softer
and then rolled through pairs of
openings,
each
progressively
smaller, until the proper size is
reached. To produce wire, hot
rolling is continued until the rod
is about three-eighths of an inch
in diameter. Then it is coldworked and drawn through dies
which have openings smaller than
the rod to reduce cross-sectional
dimensions. Wire draw operators
(D.O.T. 614.782) operate ma­
chines which draw the wire
through the series of dies and au­
tomatically coil it on revolving
reels.
Structural shapes such as I
beams and angles may be hot
rolled or extruded. Hot rolled
structural are made by passing
a square bloom with rounded
corners between rolls having a
series of grooves. As the grooves
become smaller, the bloom is re­
duced in cross section and elong­
ated. The shape of the structural
is determined by the contour of
the grooves in the rolls.
Extrusion. Extruding of metal
often is compared with squeezing
toothpaste from a tube. Extruded
aluminum shapes are produced
by placing heated billets (alumi­
num logs) in an enclosed cylinder
in a powerful press. A hydraulic
ram which has a force of several
million pounds pushes the metal
through a hole cut in a die at the
other end of the cylinder. The
metal takes the contour of the die
in cross-section and then may be
cut into desired lengths. By de­
signing different dies, almost any

shape of aluminum product may
be formed. The press is operated
by an extrusion press operator
(D.O.T. 614.782) who regulates
the rate of extrusion to prevent
metal rupture and adherence of
metal to contour walls.
Another type of extrusion is im­
pact extrusion, a combination of
extrusion and forging. Shapes of
aluminum are inserted in dies of
powerful presses, some up to three
stories high. A punch gives the
slug a forceful downward blow,
and the metal of the slug is forced
around the punch. The produc­
tion process is basically complete
in the one blow.

M ainten ance, Tran spo rtation and
Plant Service O ccupations
Large numbers of workers are
employed in the aluminum indus­
try to keep machines and equip­
ment operating properly. Others
are engaged in moving materials,
supplies, and finished products
throughout the plants; still others
are employed in service occupa­
tions such as guard, policeman,
and custodian. Many of these oc­
cupations also are common to
other industries. (See index to
the Handbook.)
The critical importance of elec­
tricity to the reduction process
requires a relatively large number
of electricians to install electrical
wiring and maintain electrical fix­
tures, apparatus, and control
equipment. Electronics mechanics
repair computers, industrial con­
trols, radiography equipment, and
other complex electronic gear.
Millwrights move, maintain,
and repair mechanical equipment.
They take apart and restore to
operating use machinery essential
to aluminum production and fab­
rication. Maintenance machinists
are employed in plant machine
shops to make and repair me­
chanical parts used in the plant

EMPLOYMENT OUTLOOK AND OCCUPATIONS IN THE ALUMINUM INDUSTRY

and determine policy decisions.
Middleline managers and super­
intendents direct individual de­
partments, offices, and operations.
Other administrative personnel
function in staff positions such as
accountants, lawyers, statisti­
cians, economists, and mathema­
ticians.

machinery and equipment. Sta­
tionary engineers operate and
maintain the powerplants, tur­
bines, steam engines, and motors
used in aluminum plants.
Diemakers lay out, assemble,
and repair dies used in aluminum
metalworking operations. Brick­
layers build, rebuild, and reline
boilers, furnaces, soaking pits,
and similar installations. Plumb­
ers and pipefitters lay out, install,
and maintain piping and piping
systems for steam, water, and in­
dustrial materials used in alumi­
num manufacture. Maintenance
welders join metal parts by hand
or machine riveting and by resist­
ance welding and electric arc and
gas welding.

Professional, Technical, and
Related Occupations
Engineers, scientists, and tech­
nicians make up a significant pro­
portion of nonproduction worker
employment in the industry.
Quality control is essential in
producing aluminum. Companies
in the industry employ chemists
to control the quality by making
chemical analyses of aluminum
and the raw materials used in its
production. Process metallurgists
study the reduction process to
determine the most efficient
methods of producing aluminum
from raw materials. Physical met­
allurgists conduct microscopic,
X-ray, spectroscopic, and physical
and mechanical property tests of
aluminum and alloys to determine
their physical characteristics.
They also develop new alloys and
new uses for aluminum and alloys.

Chemical engineers and me­
chanical engineers design and
supervise the construction and op­
eration of reduction and fabricat­
ing facilities. Most mechanical
engineers are employed in the fab­
ricating sectors of the industry,
where they may design, regulate,




615

C lerical and Related O ccupations
A large group of clerical work­
ers, including bookkeepers, secre­
taries, stenographers, clerk typ­
ists, and keypunch and computer
operators keep records for the
company and transact everyday
business.
Chemical engineer and potroom
supervisor discuss reduction operations.

and improve rolling mills and re­
lated equipment.
Electrical engineers plan and
oversee the installation, opera­
tion, and maintenance of the elec­
tric generators, transmission, and
distribution systems used in the
manufacture of aluminum.
Industrial engineers conduct
work measurement studies, de­
velop management control sys­
tems to aid in financial planning
and cost analysis, and, in general,
determine the most effective
methods of using the basic factors
of production: manpower, ma­
chines, and materials.

Engineering technicians, labo­
ratory technicians, and chemical
analysts assist engineers and
chemists in research and develop­
ment work. Draftsmen prepare
the working drawings that are re­
quired for the manufacture and
repair of reduction and fabricat­
ing machinery.
A wide range of other profes­
sional and administrative occupa­
tions is needed to facilitate the
manufacture of aluminum. Top
executives manage the companies

Train in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Aluminum companies generally
hire and train inexperienced work­
ers for processing and mainte­
nance jobs. For most professional
occupations, the minimum re­
quirement is a bachelor’s or first
professional degree. For research
and development work, most
companies prefer graduate de­
grees. Administrative and man­
agement positions usually are
filled by people who have engi­
neering or other specialized back­
grounds and have been promoted
to such jobs. Sales positions often
are filled by people having engi­
neering or related technical back­
grounds.
Applicants and employees who
demonstrate a capacity for tech­
nical work have opportunities to
qualify as technicians, laboratory
assistants, and other semiprofes­
sionals. Some college background
in science or graduation from a
technical institute or community
college is required for many tech­
nical jobs.
Some jobs in the industry can
be learned in a few days; craft,

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

616
engineering, and scientific posi­
tions require years of prepara­
tion. New, unskilled workers
often begin their careers in labor
pools from which they are as­
signed to fill in for regular workers
who are absent. After working in
the pool for a specified period,
they become eligible for a perma­
nent position in a shop or depart­
ment. As workers acquire addi­
tional skills and seniority with
the company, they usually move
to more responsible and better
paying positions. Former produc­
tion and maintenance workers fill
many foremen and supervisory
positions.
Craftsmen are trained most
often on the job. A number of
companies, particularly the larger
ones, have formal apprentice
training programs. Under these
programs, apprentices take relat­
ed instruction courses in class­
rooms or at home and also work
with experienced craftsmen to
obtain practical on-the-job expe­
rience. The length of the appren­
ticeship varies according to the
requirements of the particular
craft, although most require 3 or
4 years. The following crafts are
included among the apprentice­
ship programs currently in force
in the industry: Electrician,
welder, brickmason, carpenter,
pyrometer man, machinist, main­
tenance mechanic, pipefitter, diemaker, roll grinder, sheet-metal
worker, and automotive me­
chanic. The method of selecting
candidates for apprentice pro­
grams varies by company, but
generally they are chosen from
promising young men already em­
ployed by the company.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment in the industry is
expected to rise moderately
through the 1970’s, although the
amount of aluminum produced




annually is likely to increase
sharply. Most job opportunities
will stem from the need to replace
workers who retire, die, or leave
the industry for other reasons.
Openings arising from deaths and
retirements alone are expected to
average about 2,000 a year.
Demand for aluminum is ex­
pected to continue to grow at a
fast rate because industries that
represent major markets for alu­
minum are growing industries
with potential for new product
development. For example, motor
vehicle manufacturers are ex­
panding the use of the metal in
automobile components, and vir­
tually the entire bodies of many
trucks and buses are made of alu­
minum. Today’s aircraft average
75 to 85 percent aluminum. Alu­
minum is being used widely in the
construction of large office and
institutional buildings and for
residential construction and re­
modeling. Space applications for
aluminum include components
for manned space vehicles and
scientific s a t e l l i t e s , rockets,
launch facilities, guidance sys­
tems, and powder for rocket pro­
pellant. To take advantage of this
potential, the aluminum industry
supports a strong research and
development p r o g r a m which
should continue to develop new
alloys, processes, and products.
As a result, the number of engi­
neers, scientists, and technical
personnel is expected to increase
as a proportion of total employ­
ment.
On the other hand, larger cell
and plant capacities and techno­
logical developments, such as con­
tinuous casting and computer
controlled rolling operations, will
limit employment growth among
some production occupations.
Earnings and W orking Conditions
Earnings of plant workers in
the aluminum industry are higher

than the average for other manu­
facturing industries. For example,
in 1968, earnings of production
workers in primary aluminum
plants averaged $155.45 a week
or $3.71 an hour. Production
workers in aluminum rolling and
drawing plants averaged $149.70
a week or $3.41 an hour. This
compares with average earnings
of $122.51 per week or $3.01 an
hour for production workers in
all manufacturing.
Skilled operators and skilled
maintenance and craft workers
hold the highest paying plant
jobs. Standard hourly rates ef­
fective in 1967 for selected occu­
pations in a number of plants of
a large aluminum producer are
shown as follows:
Occupation

Hourly
wage rate

Reduction:
Laborer ..............................
Scaleman ............................
Industrial trucker ............
Soaking pit operator .........
Annealing furnace operator
Potman................................
Pourer ................................
Tapper ................................

$2.97
3.22
3.29
3.42
3.55
3.56
3.55
3.82

Fabricating:
Mill helper ........................
Stretcher-leveler operator ..
Scalper operator................
Inspector ............................
Hot mill operator..............
Continuous mill operator ..
4-Hi mill operator ............

3.03
3.42
3.42
3.48
3.94
4.00
4.00

Maintenance:
Boiler fireman ..................
Carpenter............................
Welder, pipefitter,
millwright ......................
Layout man........................
Electrician, machinist,
pyrometer man..............

3.81
4.07
4.13
4.26
4.33

In addition to the above rates,
premium pay is given for over­
time work and for work on Sun­
days and holidays. Aluminum
workers also receive other bene­
fits, such as paid vacations and
holidays; retirement benefits;
life, sickness and accident, hospi­
tal, medical and surgical insur-

EMPLOYMENT OUTLOOK AND OCCUPATIONS IN THE ALUMINUM INDUSTRY

ance; shift differentials; supple­
mental jury pay; and supplement­
al unemployment benefits. Most
workers receive vacation pay
ranging from 1 to 4 weeks, de­
pending on length of service. In
addition, an extended vacation
plan that is in effect in the in­
dustry provides 13-week vaca­
tions (including regular vacation
time) every 5 years.
Salaried personnel generally re­
ceive employee benefits compar­
able to those for hourly employees
in the plant. The salary of em­
ployees varies considerably from
very high paying executive posi­
tions to relatively low paying
clerical jobs. Starting salaries are
determined by a number of fac­
tors, some of which are the job
being filled, the applicant’s quali­
fications, comparable area and in­
dustry wage scales, and the struc­
ture of the hourly pay scale at
the plant. Graduates of accredited
colleges receive good starting sal­
aries, and engineering graduates
usually receive the highest offers.




The reduction of alumina to
aluminum requires high temper­
atures and makes the potroom an
uncomfortable place to work. The
workplace is often dusty and
smoky, although aluminum com­
panies have improved working
conditions in recent years in re­
duction plants through extensive
fume control programs and other
projects. The fabricating side of
the industry offers more favorable
work conditions. Workers in cer­
tain jobs are subject to high tem­
peratures, noises, and other dis­
comforts; however, the plant­
wide conditions are more pleasant
than those found in reduction op­
erations. Maintenance shops offer
a favorable working atmosphere.
Because aluminum reduction is a
continuous operation, some work­
ers are required to work at night
and on weekends.
The industry stresses safe
working conditions and conducts
intensive programs of worker
safety education. For example,
reduction plants have had a con­

617

sistently lower frequency rate of
injuries per man-hour than in
other primary nonferrous metal
reduction and refining plants.
Most process and maintenance
workers in the aluminum industry
belong to labor unions. In addi­
tion, labor organizations repre­
sent some office, technical, and
security personnel. The unions
having the greatest number of
members in the industry are
United Steelworkers of America;
Aluminum Workers International
Union; and International Union,
United Automobile, Aerospace
and Agricultural I m p l e m e n t
Workers of America.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

The Aluminum Association, 420
Lexington Ave., New York, N.Y.
10017.




O C C U P A T IO N S IN T H E
A P P A R E L IN D U S T R Y

Over a million workers are em­
ployed in making clothing for the
Nation’s population. The appar­
el industry produces about $170
worth of clothing annually for
every man, woman, and child.
The industry is an important
source of jobs for workers who
have widely different skills and
interests. Many of the jobs in
this industry can be learned in a
few weeks; others take several
years.
The apparel industry is the Na­
tion’s largest employer of women
in manufacturing. Four out of
five garment workers are women.
Most sewing machine operators
are women. However, many oth­
ers work in jobs such as hand
sewer, bookkeeper, and designer.
Men usually predominate in jobs
such as cutter and marker, presser, production manager, engineer,
and salesman.

N ature and Location of the
Industry
About 1.4 million men and
women were employed in the ap­
parel industry in 1968. Approxi­
mately 633,000 produced women’s
and children’s apparel; and about
505,000 produced men’s clothing.
About 430,000 workers made
dresses, skirts, blouses, suits and
coats and 124,000 produced un­
dergarments for women and chil­
dren. In the men’s apparel indus­
try, 133,000 workers produced
tailored clothing (suits, overcoats,
topcoats and sportcoats) for men
and boys and 372,000 made men’s
and boys’ shirts, slacks, work
clothes, separate trousers, night­
wear, undergarments and other
furnishings. Another 104,000 were
employed in shops which made
miscellaneous apparel, such as fur




goods, raincoats, gloves, and
dressing gowns. About 176,000
workers classified in the apparel
industry produced curtains and
draperies.
Although apparel factories are
located in nearly all States, ap­
proximately 7 out of every 10 of
the workers are employed in 10
States: New York, Pennsylvania,
New Jersey, Tennessee, Cali­
fornia, North Carolina, Georgia,
Massachusetts, Texas, and South
Carolina. New York City is the
Nation’s fashion center and most
large a p p a r e l manufacturers
maintain sales offices there. Store
buyers visit these showrooms to
see the latest styles, especially
“ high fashion” women’s apparel,
including dresses, coats, and suits.
As a result, many of the jobs
which have to do with designing,
sample making, and selling are in
New York City.
In women’s apparel manufac­
turing, almost one-half of the
workers were employed in plants
located in the New York-North­
eastern New Jersey metropolitan
area and in areas of Pennsylvania
such as Wilkes-Barre-Hazelton,
Allentown - Bethlehem - Easton,
and Philadelphia. However, many
jobs for workers manufacturing
women’s apparel also are found in
Los Angeles-Long Beach and San
Francisco, California; Fall RiverNew Bedford, Massachusetts;
Chicago, Illinois; Miami, Florida;
Dallas, Texas; and St. Louis,
Missouri.
In the men’s and boy’s tailored
clothing industry the major man­
ufacturing centers are: New York
City, Philadelphia, C h i c a g o ,
Rochester - Buffalo, AllentownReading-Easton, Baltimore, Bos­
ton, Cleveland, Cincinnati, Los
Angeles-Long Beach, and St.
Louis. Most of the factories mak­

ing men’s, youths’ and boys’ fur­
nishings such as trousers, work
clothing, shirts, and nightwear are
located in small communities pri­
marily in the South and South­
west.
Most apparel factories are
small. Although plants have been
growing larger in recent years,
only about 20 percent of them
employ more than 100 workers.
Many of the large plants make
men’s and boys’ apparel. Plants
that manufacture garments that
are subject to rapid style change
tend to be smaller than those
making standard type garments
such as work pants.

O ccupations in the Industry
The major operations in mak­
ing apparel are designing the gar­
ment, cutting the cloth, sewing
the pieces together, and pressing
the assembled garment. General­
ly, high-grade apparel and styleoriented garments are more care­
fully designed and involve more
handwork and fewer machine op­
erations than the cheaper, more
standardized garments. For ex­
ample, much hand detailing goes
into a woman’s high-priced fash­
ionable cocktail dress or into a
man’s high priced suit or coat. In
contrast, standardized garments
such as men’s undershirts, over­
alls, and work shirts usually are
sewn entirely by machine. To
make the many different types,
styles, and grades of garments,
workers with various skills and
educational backgrounds are em­
ployed in the apparel industry.

Designing

Room,

Occupations.

Typically, the manufacturing
process begins with the designer
(D.O.T. 142.081) who creates
original designs for new types
and styles of apparel. The design­
er usually works with one type
of apparel, such as men’s suits or
women’s dresses. Women predom­
inate as the designers of women’s
dresses;
some
men
design
619

620
women’s coats and suits. For
women’s apparel, the designer
may get ideas by visiting mu­
seums, libraries, and major fash­
ion centers in both the United
States and Europe. The designer
makes sketches of his designs and
presents them to the manage­
ment and sales staff of his com­
pany for approval. The sketches
include information about the
type of fabric, trim, and color. In
designing women’s or children’s
garments, he may make an ex­
perimental 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.
785.381) prepares these sample
garments by following the de­
signer’s sketch and performing all
necessary machine and hand sew­
ing operations.
Since designing is a creative
job, designers usually work with­
out close supervision, but they
must produce a satisfactory num­
ber of successful styles during a
season, especially when designing
women’s fashion garments. A
large garment manufacturer gen­
erally has one designer and sev­
eral assistants who often have
specialized designing responsibili­
ties of their own. Many small
plants and plants making stand­
ardized garments do not employ
designers but purchase ready­
made designs or patterns.
When the sample garments or
sketch has been approved, it is
sent to a patternmaker (D.O.T.
781.381) who constructs a fullsize master pattern. Working
closely with the designer, the pat­
ternmaker 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,




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

yokes, seams, and shrinkage. In
some shops designers or all-round
tailors make patterns; in other
shops the assistant designer per­
forms the patternmaking tasks.
The master pattern serves as a
guide for the pattern grader
(D.O.T. 781.381) who makes a
wide range of sizes in each gar­
ment style. In a sense, the pattern
grader is a specialized draftsman.

He measures the pieces that make
up the master pattern and modi­
fies them to fit all sizes. The pat­
tern grader then outlines each re­
vised pattern piece on fiberboard
and cuts out the pieces by follow­
ing the outlines. After he com­
pletes a set of pattern pieces for
each garment size, he attaches a
label to identify the part and size
of the garment. Some large plants

Hand spreader lays out cloth.

621

OCCUPATIONS IN THE APPAREL INDUSTRY

board.
Machine
spreaders
(D.O.T. 781.884) are aided by
machines in laying the cloth even­
ly back and forth across the
table.
In most plants, m a r k e r s
(D.O.T. 781.484) trace the fiberboard pattern pieces on large
sheets of paper and make several
carbons of these tracings. Some
plants that make men’s and boys’
suits and coats trace the pattern

pieces with chalk directly on the
cloth itself, rather than on paper.
To get the greatest number of
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. Plaids, stripes,
and other patterned fabrics must
be marked so that adjoining gar­
ment parts will match when the
garment is assembled. Before

Marker traces outlines of pattern.

use computers to reduce the
length of time required to draw
up the pattern for each garment
size from the master pattern.

C u t t i n g Room Occupations.
Workers in the cutting room pre­
pare cloth for sewing into articles
of wearing apparel. There are
five basic operations in the cut­
ting department: s p r e a d i n g ,
marking, cutting, assembling, and
ticketing. Small shops may com­
bine two or more of these opera­
tions into a single job. Most jobs
in the cutting room are held by
men.
Hand spreaders (D.O.T. 781.887) lay out neat bolts of cloth
into exact lengths on the cutting




Cutter directs electrically powered cutting knife through layers of cloth.

622
making the full-size paper mark­
ers, larger plants may photograph
miniature patterns which have
been arranged in acceptable po­
sitions to minimize fabric waste.
A cutter (D.O.T. 781.884)
cuts out the various garment
pieces from the layers of 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 fre­
quently is combined into a single
job of cutter-marker.
Other types of cutters are em­
ployed in shops making highquality garments. Hand cutters
or shapers (D.O.T. 781.887) trim
and cut the pieces for these gar­
ments to make them conform ex­
actly to the original pattern.
Sometimes 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 are prepared for the sew­
ing room by another group of
specialized workers. Assemblers,
sometimes called bundlers or fit­
ters, (D.O.T. 781.687) bring to­
gether and bundle garment pieces
and accessories (linings, tapes,
and trimmings) needed to make a
complete garment. They match
color, size, and fabric design and
use chalk or thread to mark lo­
cations for pockets, buttonholes,
buttons, and other trimmings.
They identify each bundle with
a ticket, which is also used to
figure the earnings of workers
who are paid for the number of
pieces they produce. The bundles
are then routed to the various
sections of the sewing room.
Sewing Room Occupations. Al­
most half of all apparel workers
are sewers and stitchers. Most of
the employees in these jobs are
women. Sewers stitch garment




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

cuttings together either by ma­
chine or by hand. The quality and
style of the finished garment usu­
ally determine how much hand­
work is involved. Generally, high­
er priced clothing, such as suits
and coats, require more hand­
work than do standardized gar­
ments. In the average plant, how­
ever, the work is broken down
into a large number of machine
operations. Some handwork is
done when the garment nears
completion.

Sewing m a c h i n e operators
(D.O.T. 787.782) use sewing ma­
chines that are generally heavier
and capable of 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 op­
erators specialize in a single op­
eration such as sewing shoulder
seams, attaching cuffs to sleeves,
or hemming blouses. Others make
garment sections such as pockets,
collars, or sleeves. Still others as­
semble and join these completed
sections to the main parts of the
garment. Some sewing machine
operators employed in shops mak­
ing high priced dresses and
women’s coats and suits perform
all the machine operations on a
garment.
Sewing machine operators gen­
erally are classified according to
the type of machine they use, such
as single-needle sewing machine
operator or blindstitch machine
operator. Others are known by
the type of work performed, such
as collar stitcher, sleeve finisher,
cuff tacker, or coat baster.
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.
782.884) use needle and thread
to perform various operations
ranging from simple sewing to
complex stitching. Many hand

sewers specialize in a single opera­
tion, such as buttonhole making,
lapel basting, or lining stitching.
In a typical apparel plant,
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 opera­
tor performs one or two assigned
tasks on each piece in the bundle
and then passes the bundle to
the next operator. Some plants
employ material handlers (D.O.T.
929.887) often called floor boys
or floor girls who move garment
bundles from one sewing opera­
tion to another.
At various stages of the sewing
operations, inspectors and check­
ers (D.O.T. 789.687) examine
garments for proper workman­
ship.. They mark defects such as
skipped stitches or bad seams,
which are repaired before the gar­
ments are passed on to the next
sewing
operation.
Inspectors
sometimes make minor repairs.
Trimmer, hand (D.O.T. 781.887)
often called thread trimmers and
cleaners remove loose threads,
basting stitches, and lint from gar­
ments. This is called “ in-process
inspection.”

Tailoring

Occupations.

Tailors

(D.O.T. 785.381 and .261) and
dressmakers (D.O.T. 785.361)
are able to make garments from
start to finish by hand or by ma­
chine. Some skilled tailors who
are employed in plants to make
men’s, women’s, and children’s
outer garments may make up
sample garments from the design­
er’s specifications.
Bushelmen (D.O.T. 785.281),
repair defects in finished gar­
ments 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 sew­
ing necessary to correct defects.
Pressing Occupations. The

OCCUPATIONS IN THE APPAREL INDUSTRY

623

specialize in one type of pressing ishes sewing the various sections
or ironing. For example, in a shirt together to make the complete
factory, a collar pointer (D.O.T. garment. Fur finishers (D.O.T.
583.885) operates a pressing ma­ 783.381) sew in the lining, tape
chine that shapes and presses edges, make pockets, and sew on
buttons and loops.
points of shirt collars.
Administrative, Sales and Main­
There are two basic types of
pressers— underpressers and fin­ tenance Occupations. The major­
ish pressers. Underpressers spe­ ity of the adminstrative positions
cialize on particular garment in an apparel plant are in the
parts, such as collars, shoulders, production department. The pro­
seams, or pockets. Their duties duction manager occupies a
vary from simple smoothing of strategic position in apparel
cloth and flattening of seams to firms. He is responsible for esti­
skillful shaping of garment parts. mating production costs, sched­
Finish pressers generally do final uling the flow of work, hiring and
pressing and ironing at the end training workers, c o n t r o l l i n g
quality, and supervising the over­
of the sewing operations.
Fur Shop Occupations. The ap­ all production activities of the
parel industry includes plants plant.
The industrial engineer advises
that manufacture garments made
of fur. Because furs are expensive management about the efficient
and difficult to work with, each use of machines, materials, and
operation in making a fur gar­ workers. (Further discussion of
ment requires skilled handwork industrial engineers is included
by an experienced craftsman. elsewhere in the Handbook.)
Clerks, bookkeepers, stenogra­
Many of these workers have spe­
Presser finishes slacks.
cial skills not found in plants that phers, and other office workers
make up payrolls, prepare in­
make other types of apparel.
shape and appearance of the fin­
The most skilled job in a fur voices, keep records, and attend
ished garments depend to a large garment manufacturing plant is to other paperwork, required in
extent on the amount of pressing that of a cutter who sometimes this industry. In some larger
that is done during and after sew­ is also the foreman in the shop. plants, many clerical functions
ing operations. Pressing is par­ A fur cutter (D.O.T. 783.781)
are being done by computers.
ticularly important in making selects and matches enough fur This requires keypunch opera­
high-quality garments. For exam­ skins to make a single garment, tors, computer programers and
ple, from time to time during the such as a fur coat or jacket. He operators, and systems analysts.
sewing of suits, coats, and better arranges and cuts the skins on Salesmen, purchasing agents,
quality dresses, seams are pressed pattern pieces so that the choice models, credit managers, and ac­
open in order to produce a better sections of fur are placed where countants are among other types
fitting and neater garment and they will show. Following the of workers in the apparel indus­
to make it easier to assemble the sewing instruction given by the try. Sewing machine mechanics
garment. This is called “ under- cutter, fur machine operators are responsible for keeping the
pressing.” In the manufacture of
(D.O.T. 787.782) stitch these industry’s large number of sewing
lighter weight garments, on the pelts together to form the major machines in good running order.
other hand, pressing is done only garment sections. A fur nailer (Discussions of many of these
after completion of all the sewing (D.O.T. 783.884) wets the sewn jobs can be found elsewhere in
operations.
garment sections, stretches them the Handbook.)
Pressers (D.O.T. 363.782, .884, by hand, and nails them on a
and .885) use various types of board so that they will cover the
steam pressing machines, includ­ pattern. When the sections are
T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
ing manikins and body forms, or dry, the nailer removes the nails
and A dvancem ent
hand irons to flatten seams and and trims the fur exactly along
to shape garment parts and fin­ the outline of the pattern. The
Training requirements for pro­
ished garments. Pressers may fur machine operator then fin­ duction (plant) jobs in the ap-




624
parel industry range from a few
weeks of on-the-job training to
several months of training and
experience. The difference in
training time needed before an
employee can reach his maximum
speed and efficiency depends on
the type of job, the worker’s apti­
tude, and the employers training
program. Many plant workers
pick up their skills while work­
ing as helpers or assistants to ex­
perienced workers. Apprentice­
ship is infrequent and is limited
mainly to designing, cutting, or
tailoring jobs. Some private and
public schools in garment manu­
facturing centers offer instruction
in occupations such as designing,
patternmaking, and cutting as
well as machine and hand sewing.
Good eyesight and manual dex­
terity are essential for most pro­
duction jobs in the apparel in­
dustry. Many occupations are
well suited for handicapped work­
ers since most jobs are performed
while the worker is seated. Little
physical exertion is required.
Older workers and women also
perform well in a variety of jobs.
Many workers in their fifties and
sixties are among the industry’s
most skilled and productive.
Women are employed in most of
the occupations 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 pat­
ternmaking jobs, or through ap­
prenticeship. There is an increas­
ing 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 reputations
have been established, transfer to
jobs in larger, better paying




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

firms. In large firms, young peo­
ple may start as assistant de­
signers.
A designer should have artistic
ability, including a talent for
sketching, a thorough knowledge
of fabrics, a keen sense of color,
and the ability to translate de­
sign ideas into a finished gar­
ment. He should also be ac­
quainted with garmentmaking
techniques which he may learn
by working briefly at various op­
erative jobs, such as machine
sewing, draping, sample making,
and cutting.
The production manager usu­
ally begins as a management
trainee, and the industrial engi­
neer as a junior engineer. A col­
lege education is increasingly be­
ing required for these jobs. For
those without this educational
background, many years of onthe-job training in all production
processes ranging from selection
of fabrics to shipment of finished
apparel are often required to
qualify as a production manager.
Most patternmakers pick up
the skills of the trade by working
for several years as helpers to ex­
perienced patternmakers. Pattern
graders and cutters are occasion­
ally promoted to patternmaking
jobs. Patternmakers must have
the ability to visualize from a
sketch or model furnished by the
designer the size, shape, and
number of pattern pieces re­
quired. Patternmakers must also
have a detailed understanding of
how garments are made as well
as a knowledge of body propor­
tions. Like the designer, they
must also have a thorough knowl­
edge of fabrics.
Pattern graders usually are se­
lected from employees 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 assem­
blers (bundlers or fitters). Pati­
ence and the ability to match
colors and patterns are necessary
qualifications for these jobs. As­
semblers (bundles, or fitters),
may be promoted to jobs such as
spreader. Several years of experi­
ence in the cutting room are re­
quired before an employee can
become a skilled marker or cut­
ter. A small number of the larger
plants have apprenticeship pro­
grams which usually last 4 years
and include training in spreading,
cutting, marking, and pattern­
making.
Entry into beginning hand- or
machine-sewing jobs is relatively
easy for young women, since
there are few restrictions regard­
ing educational, and physical con­
dition. Some previous training in
sewing operations is preferred,
but many apparel plants hire
workers who have had no experi­
ence in sewing. Generally, train­
ing is informal and received on
the job. New workers usually
start by sewing straight seams,
under the supervision of a section
foreman or experienced worker.
Some large companies have
formal on-the-job training pro­
grams for sewing machine opera­
tors. Training usually consists of
learning how to perform a single
operation with minimal finger,
arm, and body movements.
Most sewing jobs require the
ability to do routine work rapid­
ly. The same sewing operation is
repeated on each identical gar­
ment piece. Since almost all these
workers are paid on the basis of
the number of pieces produced,
any clumsiness of hand may re­
duce the worker’s earnings. Good
eyesight and ability to work at a
steady and fast pace are essential
for both hand- and machine-sew­
ing jobs.
The average sewing machine
operator has little opportunity
for promotion beyond section

OCCUPATIONS IN THE APPAREL INDUSTRY

625
learn the trade through vocation­
al training in day or evening
schools. Graduates from voca­
tional schools frequently are hir­
ed and given additional train­
ing on the job. Others learn the
trade informally, on the job, first
doing relatively easy sewing op­
erations and progressively ad­
vancing to more difficult opera­
tions. It requires several years of
experience to become an all­
round tailor or dressmaker.
Tailors and dressmakers may
qualify for jobs as fitters or alter­
ation tailors in department
stores, clothing stores, and clean­
ing and dyeing shops.
Pressers usually begin as underpressers working on simple
seams and garment parts. This
job can be learned in a very short
time. After the pressers gain ex­
perience, they work on more dif­
ficult operations and eventually
may be promoted to the job of
finish presser. Pressing, like tail­
oring, 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
industry.

Em ploym ent O utlook

Clipper cuts loose threads from finished garment.

forelady, although some sewing
machine operators have worked
their way up to production man­
ager. Most sewers stay on the
same general type of operation
throughout most of their working




lives. However, some workers
may be moved from simpler sew­
ing operations to more compli­
cated tasks that pay higher piece
rates.
Some tailors and dressmakers

Employment in the apparel in­
dustry is expected to increase
moderately through the 1970’s.
In addition to the thousands of
job opportunities expected to re­
sult from employment growth, a
considerable number of opportu­
nities for young people will occur
because of the tens of thousands
of experienced workers who will
leave the industry. About threefourths of the industry’s workers
are women, a large number of
whom leave the industry each
year to marry or to raise families.
Also, this industry employs more

626
older workers than many indus­
tries. It is estimated that deaths
and retirements alone will pro­
vide 70,000 job openings annu­
ally.
Demand for apparel in the
years ahead is expected to in­
crease rapidly. The increased de­
mand for apparel will result
mainly from a growing, more af­
fluent, and younger population.
For example, the number of peo­
ple in their teens and twenties
will rise greatly in the years
ahead, and these are the age
groups in which spending for ap­
parel is greatest. The trend tow­
ard more workers in clerical,
sales, professional, and other
white-collar occupations will in­
crease the demand for apparel,
since these workers spend more
for apparel than other workers.
Increasing numbers of working
women, particularly those in sec­
retarial and other office jobs that
require “ dressing up,” will stimu­
late apparel purchases. Men, also,
are buying more clothing, includ­
ing highly styled garments as well
as sports and leisure wear. Em­
ployment in the apparel industry
is not expected to increase as rap­
idly as this demand. Gradual in­
creases in the use of mechanized
equipment and other labor saving
devices resulting from anticipated
increases in research and devel­
opment expenditures are expect­
ed to result in greater output per
worker. Examples of such equip­
ment include sewing machines
that can position needles and
trim threads automatically; de­
vices that automatically position
fabric pieces under the needle
and remove and stack completed
pieces; equipment that auto­
matically spreads fabrics on cut­
ting tables; and the more wide­
spread use of computers and con­
veyor systems for controlling and
improving the movement of fab­
rics and apparel. The major im­
pact of mechanization is expected




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

to be in reducing the time an
operator must spend in position­
ing and removing work done at
each stage of a production proc­
ess. Most sewing, pressing, and
cutting operations are expected
to continue primarily as manual
operations through the 1970’s.
Most employment opportuni­
ties will be in sewing machine op­
erator jobs because this occupa­
tional group is the largest and is
made up mostly of women who
have a high turnover rate. Some
job openings also will occur in
tailoring occupations in which a
large proportion of the employees
are older workers. Designers will
have many opportunities because
this group also is composed
largely of women.
There also will be several thou­
sand job opportunities, each, for
industrial and mechanical engi­
neers, salaried managers, and
skilled machine mechanics. Short­
ages of these workers probably
will continue due to the expected
growth in the size of individual

apparel establihments, in the
number and size of companies
operating more than one estab­
lishment, and in the installation
of new mechanical equipment.
Opportunities for tailors, sam­
ple makers, and other skilled oc­
cupations in the apparel indus­
try will continue to be mainly in
the metropolitan centers where
plants manufacturing dresses,
women’s suits and coats, or men’s
and boys’ suits and coats are lo­
cated. There will be a small num­
ber of new employment opportu­
nities in men’s clothing design­
ing, patternmaking, and cutting
room jobs.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
In 1968, average earnings of
production workers in the apparel
industry were $79.78 a week or
$2.21 an hour, compared with
$122.51 a week or $3.01 an hour
for those in all manufacturing in­
dustries. Production workers in

Most sewing machine operators are women.

627

OCCUPATIONS IN THE APPAREL INDUSTRY
Estimated, average hourly earnings
New York City
Miami
Boston
Women’s and Misses’ dresses

All production workers .............................. ... $2.60
Cutters and markers (almost all men) ............... ... 3.62
Pressers, hand (women) ...................................... ... 2.75
Pressers, hand (men) ............................................ ... 4.72
Sewing machine operators, section system
(almost all women) ............................................ ... 2.36
Sewing machine operators, single hand (tailor)
system (almost all women) .............................. ... 2.84

this industry generally worked
fewer hours per week than those
in manufacturing as a whole. Pro­
duction workers have much high­
er earnings in some kinds of gar­
ment factories than in others. For
example, those making women’s
suits and coats averaged $91.46
a week in 1968, whereas those
producing men’s work clothing
averaged $69.17 a week. Earn­
ings of apparel workers also vary
by occupation and geographical
area. For example, average hour­
ly earnings of cutters and pressers in almost all areas are higher
than those of sewing machine op­
erators; and average hourly earn­
ings generally are lower in the
South than in the Middle At­
lantic States. The following tabu­
lation gives estimated average
hourly earnings for selected oc­
cupations and geographical areas
in one segment of the apparel in­
dustry in August 1968.
Because most production work­
ers in the apparel industry are
paid on the basis of the number
of pieces they produce, their to­
tal earnings depend upon speed
as well as skill. Sewing machine
operators, hand sewers, and
pressers generally are paid on a
piecework basis. Cutters are paid
either piecework rates or hourly
wages, depending upon the prac­
tice in the area or shop in which
they work. Most of the other
workers, including tailors, pat­
ternmakers, graders, inspectors,
and work distributors, are paid
by the hour or week.
In most metropolitan areas,
most apparel employees work in




$1.91
2.89
2.01
2.65

$3.28
4.25
3.53
5.88

1.85

2.75

1.94

3.46

shops that have union contracts.
New employees in plants which
have these agreements are re­
quired to join the union after 30
days of employment. These
agreements deal with such sub­
jects as wages; hours of work;
vacation and holiday pay; senior­
ity; health, insurance, and pen­
sion plans; and other employ­
ment matters. Among the unions
to which apparel workers belong
are the Amalgamated Clothing
Workers of America (A C W A ),
International Ladies’ Garment
Workers’ Union (ILG W U ), and
United Garment Workers of
America (U G W ). The ILGWU
sponsors vacation resorts for un­
ion members and their families.
Both the ACWA and the ILGWU
operate health centers for gar­
ment workers in major producing
areas.
Workers in the apparel indus­
try 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-management re­
lations. However, workers mak­
ing certain type of garments may
have layoffs of several weeks dur­
ing slack seasons. Generally, such
layoffs occur more often in plants
making seasonal 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 pe­
riods is divided so that workers
can be assured of at least some
earnings.

Old buildings, whose surround­
ings and facilities may frequently
leave much to be desired, con­
tinue to house many apparel es­
tablishments, especially those in
metropolitan areas. Newly con­
structed plants usually have am­
ple 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 arc per­
formed while sitting and are not
physically strenuous. The work­
ing pace is rapid because work­
ers’ earnings depend on their pro­
duction. In addition, many tasks
are extremely monotonous. Seri­
ous accidents among sewers are
rare, although a sewer may oc­
casionally pierce a finger with a
needle. On the other hand, press­
ing may be strenuous work and
involves working with hot steam.
Working conditions in cutting
and designing rooms are pleasant.
In manufacturing establishments,
designing and cutting are often
performed in a separate area
away from the main sewing and
pressing operations. Jobs in de­
signing and cutting operations
are more interesting and less
monotonous than most other ap­
parel jobs. Moreover, since ac­
curacy, skill, individual talent,
and judgment are valued more
than speed in these jobs, the
work pace is less rapid.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Information relating to voca­
tional and high schools that offer
training in designing, tailoring,
and sewing may be obtained from
the Division of Vocational Edu­
cation of the Department of Edu­
cation in the State capital.
Information concerning ap­
prenticeships may be obtained
from the Apprenticeship Coun­
cil of the State Labor Depart-

628
ment or the local office of the
U.S. Employment Service. Some
local Employment Service offices
give tests to determine hand-eye
coordination, which is important
for many apparel industry jobs.
Information of a general nature
may be obtained from the follow­
ing sources:

Amalgamated Clothing Workers of
America, 15 Union Square, New
York, N.Y. 10003.




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK
American Apparel Manufacturers
Association, Inc., 2000 K St.
N W , Washington, D.C. 20006.
Associated Fur Manufacturers,
Inc., 101 West 30th St., New
York, N.Y. 10001.
Clothing Manufacturers Associa­
tion of U.S.A., 135 West 50th
St., New York, N.Y. 10020.
National Outerwear and Sports­
wear Association, Inc., 347 Fifth
Ave., New York, N.Y. 10016.
International Ladies’ Garment
Workers’ Union, 1710 Broad­
way, New York, N.Y. 10019.

United Garment Workers of
America, 31 Union Square, New
York, N.Y. 10003.
International Association of Cloth­
ing Designers, 125 12th Street,
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
19107.
National Board of the Coat and
Suit Industry, 450 Seventh Ave.
New York, N.Y. 10001.
National Dress Manufacturers’
Association, Inc., 570 Seventh
Ave. New York, N.Y. 10018.

O C C U P A T IO N S IN T H E
A T O M IC E N E R G Y F IE L D

Atomic energy is a very com­
pact source of enormous heat and
radiation that can be used in
many ways for peaceful as well
as military purposes. Peaceful
applications of atomic energy are
still in the early stages of devel­
opment, and continuing research
and development programs will
be needed during the next several
decades to find new and more
efficient ways of utilizing this
force.
In 1968, about 200,000 work­
ers were employed in a variety of
atomic energy activities. Large
numbers were engaged in re­
search and development work.
Others were in activities such as
the manufacture of nuclear weap­
ons and other defense materials,
the design and manufacture of
nuclear reactors, and the produc­
tion of nuclear fuels. Most atomic
energy workers are scientists, en­
gineers, technicians, or craftsmen.
Employment opportunities for
these workers will continue to be
especially favorable through the
1970’s.

large quantities of sea water to
produce fresh water— a process
known as desalinization. Plans
are already being developed to
build combination power genera­
tion and desalinization plants.
Nuclear reactors provide power
for naval and commercial ships.
By virtually eliminating the need
for refueling, nuclear propulsion
greatly extends the range and
mobility of our naval forces. Re­
search towards developing nu­
clear propulsion for space vehi­
cles hold excellent promise for
extending space flights beyond
lunar range by eliminating the
need to carry great quantities of
conventional fuel.
Although existing reactors gen­
erate tremendous amounts of
power from a small amount of
uranium, research is continuing
to develop even more efficient re­
actors. Still further in the future,
we can hope to generate power
through controlled fusion. Scien­
tists already have produced un­
controlled fusion in the hydrogen
bomb, but have not yet produced

a controlled fusion reaction on a
relatively small scale. Research
also is being conducted in the
“ Plowshare” program to develop
peaceful uses for nuclear explo­
sives. The program has many po­
tential applications in areas such
as gas and oil recovery, other
mining operations, and the ex­
cavation of harbors, canals, and
mountain passes.
Another significant application
of atomic energy is in the use of
radioisotopes which decay or dis­
integrate spontaneously, by emit­
ting radiation that special instru­
ments, such as thickness gages,
can detect. Radioisotopes are
very valuable as research tools in
agriculture, medicine, and indus­
try and for use in industrial in­
spection and control devices.
Nuclear radiation also has good
potential as an aid in the preser­
vation of food. One of the major
causes of food spoilage is the ac­
tivity of micro-organisms. When
food is treated with radiation,
these organisms are killed, and
the spoilage is greatly inhibited.
This treatment makes possible
the long term storage of certain
foods without refrigeration, and
extends the time for marketing
certain perishable refrigerated
items as fresh fruits and fish.

A pplications of A tom ic Energy
One of the most significant
uses of atomic energy is in the
production of commercial elec­
tricity, by using nuclear reactors
as the heat source. (See chart
30). Steam produced by such re­
actors is now generating electric­
ity for several communities. In
many areas, these reactors have
become competitive with systems
using fossil fuels, such as coal and
oil, and it is anticipated that
many more than 150 nuclear fa­
cilities will be built by 1980.
Since reactors are an efficient
source of thermal energy, they
also can be used to evaporate




629

630
How A tom ic Energy Is Produced
Atomic energy, or more accu­
rately nuclear energy, may be
produced through several proc­
esses, the two most important of
which are fission and fusion. In
fission, the nucleus of a heavy
atom is split, and energy released
in the form of heat and radiation
produces two or more lighter ele­
ments. In fusion, energy is re­
leased by combining the nuclei
of two light atoms into a heavier
atom. The detonation of atomic
bombs is an application of the
explosive release of enormous
amounts of atomic energy. Non­
weapon applications require that
release of this energy be carefully
controlled and regulated so that
it proceeds at a manageable rate.
Controlled fission is the essen­
tial feature of a nuclear reactor.
The reactor, being a furnace, re­
quires fuel to operate. The prin­
cipal source material for reactor
fuel is uranium 235. Uranium
in its natural state contains less
than 1 percent of readily fission­
able material, uranium U-235. Al­
though natural uranium is some­
times used as reactor fuel, a more
concentrated and enriched fuel
can be produced and used by in­
creasing the proportion of U-235
isotopes through a process called
gaseous diffusion. U-235 under­
goes fission readily, but manmade
fissionable materials, such as
plutonium, also can be used as
reactor fuel.
Under proper conditions, in a
nuclear reactor, the fuel will sus­
tain a “ chain reaction” — the con­
tinuous fissioning (or splitting)
of the nuclei of 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 (socalled “ atomic bullets” , that
cause other fissionable atoms to
split. These, in turn, release ad­
ditional neutrons that similarly




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

split more atoms. The level of the
chain reaction is carefully con­
trolled, usually by inserting spe­
cial neutron-absorbing rods into
the fuel chamber or “ core,” of the
reactor. In this way, the rate of
the fission reaction and of the
energy produced can be regulated
or stopped completely.
Thus, harnessed atomic energy
is produced in a nuclear reactor
in the form of heat and radiation.
However, if reactors are to be
used for power, the heat must be
removed from the reactors and
converted to electricty by conven­
tional equipment. The major dif­
ference between nuclear and con­
ventional thermal electric power
stations is that the heat needed
to generate steam to drive tur­
bines comes from a nuclear re­
actor rather than from a conven­
tional steam-generating boiler
fueled with coal, gas, or oil.
During the fission process, nu­
clear radiation is released. This
radiation, identifiable only by
sensitive instruments, can be
ruinous to equipment and can be
highly dangerous to unprotected
personnel. Therefore, special ma­
terials, resistant to damage by
radiation, are used in reactors
and great care is taken to protect
personnel.

N ature of the A tom ic Energy Field

Many different kinds of re­
search and industrial activities
are required for the production
and application of nuclear en­
ergy. Included in the various in­
dustrial processes are the mining,
milling, and refining of uranium­
bearing ores; the production of
nuclear fuels; the manufacture of
nuclear reactors, reactor compo­
nents, and nuclear instruments;
the production of special mate­

rials for use in reactors; the de­
sign, engineering, and construc­
tion of nuclear facilities; the op­
eration and maintenance of nu­
clear reactors; the disposal of ra­
dioactive wastes; the processing
and packaging of radioistopes;
the production of nuclear weap­
ons; and research and develop­
ment work.
These activities are performed
in plants in several different in­
dustries, as well as in laboratories
and other types of facilities. Much
of this work, such as ore mining
and milling, manufacture of heat
transfer equipment, and con­
struction of facilities, differs lit­
tle from similar nonatomic en­
ergy work. Other activities, such
as manufacture of the fuels
needed to run reactors, are
unique to the atomic energy field.
The Federal Government sup­
ports most of the basic atomic en­
ergy activities. The U.S. Atomic
Energy Commission (AEC) di­
rects the Federal Government’s
atomic energy program and regu­
lates the use of nuclear materials
by private organizations. The op­
eration of AEC-owned facilities,
including laboratories, uranium
processing plants, nuclear reac­
tors, and weapon manufacturing
plants, is contracted out to pri­
vate organizations. More than
half of all workers in atomic en­
ergy are employed in these gov­
ernment owned facilities. In their
own installations, private firms
are engaged in many types of
atomic energy activity, except de­
velopment and production of
military weapons and certain nu­
clear 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 AECowned laboratories and by uni­
versity and college laboratories,
other nonprofit institutions, and
industrial organizations under
Commission contracts.

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ATOMIC ENERGY FIELD

O ccupations in the A tom ic Energy
Field
Engineers, scientists, techni­
cians, and craftsmen account for
a higher proportion of total em­
ployment in this field than in
most other fields, largely because
of the importance of research and
development. Office personnel in
administrative and clerical jobs
represent another large group.
Most of the remaining employ­
ment consists of semiskilled and
unskilled workers in production
work, and plant protection and
other service workers.
Although many engineers in
atomic energy are highly trained
in nuclear technology, engineers
in all major engineering fields are
employed. Mechanical engineer­
ing is the largest single engineer­
ing occupation, but large num­
bers of electrical and electronics,

nuclear and reactor, chemical,
civil, and metallurgical engineers
also are employed. Many of these
engineers do research and devel­
opment work; others design nu­
clear reactors, nuclear instru­
ments, and other equipment used
in atomic energy, and in the op­
eration of production plants.
Research laboratories and oth­
er organizations engaged in
atomic energy employed a large
number of scientists to perform
basic and applied nuclear re­
search. Physicists and chemists
predominate, but included are
many types of scientists, such as
mathematicians, biological scien­
tists, and metallurgists.
A large number of technicians
assist engineers and scientists in
research and development and in
designing and testing equipment
and materials. These workers in­
clude draftsmen; electronics, in­

631
strument, chemical, and other en­
gineering and physical science
technicians; and radiation moni­
tors.
The atomic energy field em­
ploys many highly skilled work­
ers to fabricate special parts and
equipment to use in experimental
and pilot work and to maintain
the considerable amount of com­
plex equipment and machinery.
Maintenance mechanics (e.g.,
machinery repairmen and mill­
wrights) and all-round machin­
ists are employed extensively in
most atomic energy activities, as
are electricians, plumbers, pipe­
fitters, and other craftsmen and
chemical process operators.

Activities in the A tom ic Energy
Field
A brief description of some im­
portant atomic energy activities
and the types of workers employ­
ed in them follows.

Uranium Exploration and Mining.
The 5,100 persons employed in
uranium exploration and mining
in 1968 had jobs similar to those
in the mining of other metallic
ores. Their jobs are largely con­
centrated in the Colorado Pla­
teau area of the Far West, in the
States of New Mexico, Wyoming,
Utah, Colorado, and Arizona. A
relatively few mines account for
the bulk of production and em­
ployment. Most workers in ura­
nium mines are in production jobs,
such as miner and driller in un­
derground mines; and as truckdriver, bulldozer operator, and
machine loader in open pit mines.
About 1 out of 10 employees in
uranium exploration and mining
is in a professional job, such as
mining engineer and geologist.

Chemist prepares proton bombardment test.




Uranium Ore Milling. In uranium
mills, metallurgical and chemical
processes are used to extract ura-

632

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

nium from mined ore. Uranium
mills, located primarily in the
Colorado
Plateau,
employed
about 2,000 workers in 1968.
These mills employ skilled ma­
chinery repairmen, millwrights,
pipefitters, carpenters, electri­
cians, and chemical process oper­
ators. A small proportion of the
employees in milling operations
are scientists and engineers.

Uranium Refining and Enriching.
Milled uranium is chemically
processed to remove impurities
and then converted to metal or
intermediate chemical products
for reactor fuel preparation. Con­
ventional chemical and metal­
lurgical processes are used, but
they must meet more exacting
standards than in most other in­
dustries. 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, and
Illinois. In 1968, uranium refin­
ing and enriching plants em­
ployed about 5,300 workers.
Maintenance craftsmen, par­
ticularly in the high automated
uranium enriching plants, ac­
count for a large proportion of
skilled workers. Large numbers of
chemical process operators also
are employed. Chemical engineers
and chemists accounted for al­
most half of the engineers and sci­
entists. Many of the technicians
worked in chemical analytical
laboratories associated with pro­
duction processes.

Reactor Manufacturing. About
16,500 workers were employed in
1968 to design and manufacture
nuclear reactors and unique re­
actor components. Reactor manu­
facturers do extensive develop­
ment work on reactors and aux­
iliary equipment, design the re­
actor, and generally fabricate
some of the intricate components,




Skilled workers manufacture special electromagnets needed for research studies.

such as fuel elements, control
rods, and reactor cores.
About one-half of the em­
ployees in firms that design and
manufacture reactors are scien­
tists, engineers, and technicians.
Engineers alone represent about
one-quarter of the employment;
mechanical engineers and reactor
engineers, who are specialists in
reactor technology, predominate.
Among scientists, the largest
group of workers are physicists,
but many chemists, mathemati­
cians, and metallurgists also are
employed. Assisting these engi­
neers and scientists are many
draftsmen, engineering aids, and
physical science technicians.

Skilled workers are employed
by reactor manufacturers in ex­
perimental,
production,
and
maintenance work. All-round ma­
chinists account for a large pro­
portion of these craftsmen. Other
craftsmen such as sheet metal
workers, instrument makers, ma­
chinery repairmen, instrument
repairmen, and electricians also
are employed. Reactor manufac­
turers employ nuclear reactor op­
erators to operate experimental
and test reactors.

Reactor Operation and Mainte­
nance. About 1,300 workers op­
erated and maintained nuclear
reactors producing commercial

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ATOMIC ENERGY FIELD

electricity in 1968. Some of the
occupations found in the opera­
tion of a nuclear power station
are mechanical engineer, electri­
cal and electronics engineer, in­
strument technician, electronics
technician, radiation monitor, re­
actor operator, and other power
plant operators and attendants.
Among the employees needed to
maintain and repair reactors are
machinery repairmen, instrument
repairmen, electricians, and pipe­
fitters.

Research and Development Fa­
cilities. A number of research and
development laboratories and
other research facilities are
owned by the Atomic Energy
Commission and are operated for
the AEC by universities and in­
dustrial concerns. These facilities
are major centers for basic and
applied nuclear research in the
physical, engineering, and life
sciences and in the development
of nuclear reactors and other nu­
clear equipment. In 1968, these
facilities employed more than
52,000 workers. More than half
of the employees in AEC research
and development facilities are
engineers, scientists, and support­
ing technicians. Among the engi­
neers and scientists are phy­
sicists, mechanical engineers,
electrical and electronics engi­
neers, chemists and chemical en­
gineers, mathematicians, reactor
engineers,
metallurgists
and
metallurgical engineers, biologi­
cal scientists, and health phys­
icists. Assisting scientists and
engineers are many physical sci­
ence and engineering aids; drafts­
men; electronics, instrument, and
biological technicians; and radia­
tion monitors.
Administrative and clerical
workers together account for a
large proportion of employment.
The skilled worker group in­
cludes large numbers of all-round
machinists, electricians, machin­




ery 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 reac­
tors and many service workers
are employed in plant protection
and security operations.
Although most nuclear energy
research is performed in AEC re­
search and development facilities,
additional research is performed
in the privately owned research
laboratories of educational insti­
tutions, other nonprofit institu­
tions, and industrial concerns.
Like the AEC facilities, these
laboratories employ a large pro­
portion of workers in scientific,
engineering, and other technical
jobs.

Production of Nuclear Weapons
and Other Defense Materials.
More than 25,000 workers were
employed in 1968 in establish­
ments producing nuclear weapons
and weapon components, pluto­
nium, and other defense materials.
About 1 out of every 4 workers
in these defense production fa­
cilities is a skilled worker in a
production or maintenance job.
Included among these skilled
workers are large numbers of ma­
chinery repairmen and mill­
wrights, chemical process opera­
tors, all-round machinists, electri­
cians,
instrument
repairmen,
pipefitters, tool and die makers,
and instrument makers.
Among the large number of
scientists and engineers employed
at these facilities are many chem­
ists, physicists, and mechanical,
chemical, and electrical and elec­
tronics engineers. Many engi­
neering and physical science aids,
draftsmen, radiation monitors,
and electronics technician, are
employed to assist scientists and
engineers.

Other Atomic Energy Activities.

633
About 1,800 workers were em­
ployed in 1968 to produce special
materials such as beryllium, zir­
conium, and hafnium for use in
reactors.
About 3,500 workers were em­
ployed by companies that manu­
facture reactor control instru­
ments, radiation detection and
monitoring devices, and other in­
struments for the atomic energy
field. Production of these instru­
ments involves work similar to
that in instrument manufactur­
ing in general. Engineers and
technicians represent a substan­
tial proportion of employment in
this field.
About 800 persons were em­
ployed in companies which spe­
cialize in the manufacture of par­
ticle accelerators or their spe­
cialized components. These ma­
chines enable scientists to study
the structure and properties of
the elementary particles that
make up the nucleus of an atom.
Workers employed in the design
and manufacture of these ma­
chines include electrical and elec­
tronics engineers, mechanical en­
gineers, physicists, draftsmen,
electronics technicians, and ma­
chinists.
Other workers in the atomic
energy field are engaged in activi­
ties such as processing and
packaging radioisotopes, manu­
facturing radiography units and
radiation gages, packaging and
disposing of radioactive wastes,
and industrial radiography.

Government Employment. The
Atomic
Energy
Commission,
which directs the Federal Gov­
ernment’s atomic energy pro­
gram, employed about 7,500
workers in its headquarters and
field offices in 1968. Over 1,300
engineers and scientists were em­
ployed by the Commission, in­
cluding personnel in nearly every
major engineering and scientific
occupation. Since the AEC is pri-

634
marily an administrative and reg­
ulatory agency, approximately
two-thirds of Commission em­
ployees are in administrative and
other professional positions or in
clerical jobs. This proportion of
administrative and clerical per­
sonnel is much larger than in
most other activities in the
atomic energy field.
In addition to those employed
by the Atomic Energy Commis­
sion, several thousand govern­
ment employees are engaged in
atomic energy work in other Fed­
eral agencies and in regulatory
and promotional activities of
State and local governments.
Their
responsibilities
involve
atomic energy research and appli­
cation, and establishment of radi­
ation health and safety measures.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

for people in surrounding com­
munities. In 1968, more than 900
health physicists were employed
in radiation protection work, re­
search, or teaching.
Health physicists are responsi­
ble for planning and organizing
radiological health programs at
atomic energy facilties. They es­
tablish standards of inspection
and determine procedures for
protecting employees and elimi­
nating radiological hazards. They
supervise the inspection of work
areas with potential radiation
hazards and prepare instructions

covering safe work procedures in
these areas.
Health physicists also plan and
supervise training programs deal­
ing with radiation hazards and
advise others on methods of deal­
ing with such hazards. In some
cases, they are employed on re­
search projects dealing with the
effects of human exposure to
radiation and may develop pro­
cedures to be followed in using
radioactive materials.
Radiation monitors (also called
health-physics technicians) gen­
erally work under the supervision

Unique Atomic Energy Occupa­
tions. Most of the occupations
discussed in the preceding sec­
tions are similar to those found in
other industrial activities, al­
though they may have job titles
unique to the atomic energy field
(such as nuclear engineer, radia­
tion chemist, and nuclear reactor
operator) and require some spe­
cialized knowledge of atomic en­
ergy. A detailed discussion of the
duties, training, and employment
outlook for most of these occupa­
tions appears elsewhere in the

Handbook.
The health physics occupations,
which are unique to the atomic
energy field, and some other oc­
cupations that are unique in that
they require training in the han­
dling and use of radioactive mate­
rials
or
radiation-producing
equipment, are discussed briefly
in the following sections.
Health physicists (sometimes
called radiation or radiological
physicists or chemists) are re­
sponsible for detecting radiation
and applying safety standards to
control exposure to it for workers
in atomic energy installations and




Health physicist positions can of paint under gamma scintillation counter
before monitoring its radiation content.

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ATOMIC ENERGY FIELD

of health physicists. An estimated
1,300 radiation monitors were
employed in the atomic energy
field in 1968. They use special
instruments to monitor work
areas and equipment to detect
radioactive contamination. Soil,
water, and air samples are taken
frequently to determine radiation
levels. Monitors may also collect
and analyze radiation detectors
worn by workers, such as film
badges and pocket detection
chambers.
Radiation monitors in f o r m
their supervisors when a worker’s
exposure to radiation or the level
of radiation in a work area ap­
proaches specified maximum per­
missible limits and they recom­
mend work stoppage in poten­
tially unsafe areas. They calcu­
late the amount of time that per­
sonnel may work in contaminated
areas, considering maximum radi­
ation exposure limits and the
radiation level in the area. Moni­
tors also may give instructions in
radiation safety procedures and
prescribe special clothing require­
ments and other safety precau­
tions for workers entering radia­
tion zones.
Nuclear reactor operators per­
form work in nuclear power sta­
tions similar to that of boiler op­
erators in conventional power
stations; however, the controls
operated are different. In addi­
tion, reactor operators may as­
sist in the loading and unloading
of reactor cores. 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 lev­
els. About 900 persons were em­
ployed as nuclear reactor opera­
tors in 1968.
Accelerator operators set up
and coordinate the operation of
particle accelerators. They adjust
machine controls to accelerate




electrically charged particles, in
accordance with instructions from
the scientist in charge of the ex­
periment, and set up target mate­
rials which are to be bombarded
by the accelerated particles. They
also may assist in the mainte­
nance of equipment.
Radiographers
take
radio­
graphs of metal castings, welds,
and other objects by adjusting
the controls of an X-ray machine
or by exposing a source of radio­
activity to the object to be radio­
graphed. They select the proper
type of radiation source and film
to use and apply standard mathe­
matical formulas to determine ex­
posure distance and time. While
taking radiographs, they use radi­
ation detection instruments to
monitor the work area for poten­
tial radiation hazards. Radiog­
raphers also may remove and de­
velop the film or plate and assist
in its analysis.
Hot-cell technicians operate re­
mote-controlled equipment to test
radioactive materials that are
placed in hot cells— rooms that
are enclosed with radiation
shielding materials, such as lead
and concrete. By controlling
“ slave manipulators” (mechanical
devices that act as a pair of arms
and hands) from outside the cell
and observing their actions
through the cell window, these
technicians perform standard
chemical and metallurgical opera­
tions with radioactive materials.
Hot-cell technicians also may en­
ter the cell wearing protective
clothing to set up experiments or
to decontaminate the cell and
e q u i p m e n t . Decontamination
men have the primary duty of
decontaminating e q u i p m e n t ,
plant areas, and materials ex­
posed to radioactive contami­
nants. They use radiation-detec­
tion instruments to locate the
contamination; eliminate it by
the use of special equipment, de­
tergents, and chemicals; and then

635
verify the effectiveness of the de­
contamination measures. Wastetreatment operators operate heat
exchange units, pumps, compres­
sors, and other equipment to de­
contaminate and dispose of radio­
active waste liquids. Waste-dis­
posal men seal contaminated
wastes in concrete containers and
transport the containers to a bur­
ial ground or arrange for sea bur­
ial. Radioisotope-production oper­
ators use remote control manipu­
lators and other equipment to pre­
pare radioisotopes for shipping
and to perform chemical analyses
to ensure that radioistopoes con­
form to specifications.

Train in g and O ther Q ualifications
Training and educational re­
quirements and advancement op­
portunities for most workers in
atomic energy activities are gen­
erally similar to those for com­
parable jobs in other fields and
are discussed elsewhere in the
Handbook under the specific oc­
cupation. However, specialized
training is required for many
workers because the atomic en­
ergy field is relatively new, re­
quires rigorous work standards in
both its research and production
activities, and has unique health
and safety problems.
Engineers and scientists at all
levels of professional training are
employed in the atomic energy
field. Many of them have had ad­
vanced
training,
particularly
those engaged in research, devel­
opment, and design work. Of the
scientists and engineers employed
in research and development by
major AEC contractors about
one-fourth have a Ph. D. degree.
The proportion of engineers with
Ph. D. degrees is smaller than the
proportion of scientists with such
degrees. However, graduate train­
ing is preferred for an increasing
number of engineering jobs.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

636

Waste disposal men bury canisters containing fission products.

Training in nuclear engineering,
although increasing at the under­
graduate level, is predominately
at the graduate level.
Specialized knowledge of nu­
clear energy, which is essential
for most scientific and engineer­
ing positions in atomic energy,
may be obtained at a university
or sometimes on-the-job.
Colleges and universities have
expanded their facilities and curriculums to provide training in
nuclear energy. Engineers and
scientists who plan to specialize
in the atomic energy field gener­
ally take graduate work in nu­
clear energy, although introduc­
tory or background courses may
be taken at the undergraduate
level. Some colleges and universi­




ties award graduate degrees in
nuclear engineering or nuclear
science. Others offer graduate
training in these fields, but award
degrees only in the traditional
engineering or scientific fields.
Craftsmen in some atomic en­
ergy jobs need more training
than most caftsmen in compar­
able nonatomic jobs. High skill
requirements are often needed
because of the extreme precision
required to insure efficient opera­
tion and maintenance of complex
equipment and machinery. For
example, pipefitters 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 also may

have to meet higher reliability
standards than in most non­
atomic fields.
Craftsmen in
atomic energy generally obtain
the required special skills on-thejob. Many AEC installations also
have apprentice training pro­
grams to develop craft skills.
Health physicists should have
at least a bachelor’s degree in
physics, chemistry, or engineer­
ing, and a year or more of grad­
uate work in health physics. A
Ph. D. degree often is required
for teaching and research.
To qualify for on-the-job train­
ing as a radiation monitor, a high
school education with courses in
mathematics, physics, and chem­
istry usually is sufficient. Radia­
tion monitors must become fa­
miliar with characteristics of
radiation, maximum permissible
radiation exposure levels, and
methods of calculating exposure
periods. They also must learn
how to calibrate the instruments
they use.
Nuclear power reactor opera­
tors need a basic understanding
of reactor theory and a working
knowledge of reactor controls.
Most operator trainees have a
high school education. Trainees
usually are selected from conven­
tional power plant personnel hav­
ing experience as operators of
boiler, turbine, or electrical ma­
chinery. Preference sometimes is
given to those who have com­
pleted courses in science and en­
gineering at the college level.
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
written test given by the AEC,
and a medical examination.
To qualify for on-the-job train­
ing as an accelerator operator, a
high school education that in­
cludes courses in mathematics
and physics usually is required.
Accelerator operators receive sev-

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ATOMIC ENERGY FIELD

eral months of on-the-job train­
ing covering operating, repair,
and safety procedures. To qualify
for on-the-job training as a radiog­
rapher, a high school education,
including courses in mathematics,
chemistry, and physics, usually
is sufficient.
High school graduates with
some mechanical experience usu­
ally can qualify for on-the-job
training as hot-cell technicians
and decontamination men. They
may be given in-plant training
lasting several months. For the
job of radioisotope-production op­
erator, a high school education,
with courses in chemistry, usu­
ally is required. High school grad­
uates can qualify as waste-treat­
ment operators, but experience
in reading electronic instruments
or in a chemical laboratory is de­
sirable. High school graduates
also can qualify for employment
as waste-disposal men. They re­
ceive on-the-job training in the
operation of equipment and the
avoidance of radiation hazards.
Other workers in the atomic
energy field also need special
training because of the presence
of potential radiation hazards.
Employees who work in the vi­
cinity of such hazards are always
given on-the-job training in the
nature of radiation and the pro­
cedures to follow in case of its
accidental release.
Individuals who handle classi­
fied data (restricted for reasons
of national security) or who work
on classified projects in the
atomic energy field must have a
security clearance, based on an
investigation of a person’s char­
acter, loyalty, and associations.
The Atomic Energy Commis­
sion, at its contractor-operated fa­
cilities, supports on-the-job and
specialized training programs to
help prepare scientists, engineers,
technicians, and other workers
for the atomic energy field. The
AEC also offers graduate fellow­




ships in specialized nuclear fields.
About 600 fellowships were
awarded for the 1967-68 academic
year. In addition, other Federal
agencies also gave a number of
fellowships for graduate work in
nuclear science and technology.
The prerequisite for consideration
for a fellowship is a bachelor’s de­
gree in engineering or physical
science.
Fellowships in health physics
provide for 9 months’ training at
a university, followed by 3
months’ training at a Commis­
sion laboratory. Approximately
70 such fellowships are available
each year to students with de­
grees in biology, chemistry, engi­
neering, or physics.
Additional educational and
training opportunities are offered
in cooperative programs arranged
by AEC laboratories with col­
leges and universities. Temporary
employment at AEC-owned lab­
oratories is available to faculty
members and students. Engineer­
ing undergraduates may work at
laboratories and other Commis­
sion facilities on a rotation basis
with classroom studies, and many
graduate students do their thesis
work at AEC laboratories.
Many Commission contractors
provide employees with training
at their own plants or at nearby
colleges and universities.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Total employment in the
atomic energy field is expected to
increase moderately during the
1970’s as commercial activities in
atomic energy expand, and as
new applications of this energy
form are developed.
Many factors point to a long­
term expansion in this field. Ex­
penditures for atomic energy re­
search and development should
lead to further employment

637
growth in production activities;
the use of nuclear reactors in elec­
tric power generating stations is
becoming
increasingly
wide­
spread; and the use of reactors in
conjunction with power genera­
tion to desalinate sea water also
is expected to increase. Growth
in the use of nuclear reactors for
propulsion of surface ships is an­
ticipated, although progress in
this area may not be as rapid as in
electric power generation. Expan­
sion also is expected in the “ Plow­
share” program to develop peace­
ful uses for nuclear explosives, in
programs to further develop ra­
dioisotope technology, and in the
use of nuclear power in space.
Employment opportunities are
expected to rise significantly for
workers who design and manufac­
ture nuclear power reactors and
instruments, and who process and
package radioisotopes. As more
nuclear reactors are built and put
into operation, employment will
further increase both in the oper­
ation and maintenance of reac­
tors, and in related activities
such as the fabrication and re­
processing of reactor fuel ele­
ments and the disposal of radio­
active wastes. Employment in
mining, milling, refining, and en­
richment of uranium will increase
as the demand for nuclear fuel
increases. As the use of nuclear
power becomes more widespread,
there also will be an increase in
employment of regulatory work­
ers in both the Atomic Energy
Commission and in State agencies
to insure safe use of atomic en­
ergy. Expansion in these areas
of atomic energy will create very
good employment opportunities
for trained professional and tech­
nical workers and for skilled
craftsmen.
In addition to the employment
opportunities created by expan­
sion in atomic energy activities,
other job openings will occur be­
cause of the need to replace work-

638

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

ers who retire, die, or transfer to
other industries.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
In 1968, blue-collar workers
employed by contractors at AEC
laboratories and other installa­
tions had average straight-time
hourly earnings of $3.65; bluecollar workers in all manufactur­
ing industries had average earn­
ings of $3.01 an hour.
Professional workers employed
at AEC installations averaged
$13,200 a year in base pay in
1968, and other white-collar
workers (largely clerical and oth­
er office personnel) averaged
about $7,000 a year. (Earnings
data for many of the occupations
found in the atomic energy field
are included in the statements on
these occupations elsewhere in
the Handbook.)
Working conditions in uraniufti
mining and milling, instrument
and auxiliary equipment manu­
facturing, and facilities construc­
tion are generally similar to those
in comparable nonatomic energy
activities, except for radiation
safety precautions. Nearly all
uranium mines are equipped with
mechanical ventilation systems
that reduce the concentration of
radioactive radon gas— a sub­
stance that can cause lung injury
if inhaled over a number of years.




Technician works inside leaktight
glove-boxes.

Efforts to eliminate this hazard
are continuing. In other atomic
energy activities, in which the
major proportion of workers in
the field are employed, working
conditions generally are very
good. Buildings and plants are
well lighted and ventilated.
Equipment, tools, and machines
are modern and sometimes the

most advanced of their type.
Only a small proportion of em­
ployees in the atomic energy field
actually work in areas where di­
rect radiation hazard dangers ex­
ist. Even in these areas, shield­
ing, automatic alarm systems,
and other devices and clothing
give ample protection to the
workers. In some cases, plants are
located in remote areas.
Extensive safeguards and op­
erating practices ensure the
health and safety of workers, and
the AEC and its contractors have
maintained an excellent safety
record. The AEC regulates the
possession and use of radioactive
materials, and AEC personnel in­
spect nuclear facilities to insure
compliance with the AEC’s health
and safety requirements. Con­
stant efforts are being made to
provide better safety standards
and regulations.
Most plant hourly paid work­
ers belong to unions that repre­
sent their particular craft or in­
dustry.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

Additional information about
the atomic energy field may be
obtained from:
U.S. Atomic Energy Commission,
Washington, D.C. 20545.

O C C U P A T IO N S IN
E L E C T R O N I C S M A N U F A C T U R IN G

The science of electronics has
contributed greatly to the spec­
tacular achievements of the age
in which we live. Electronic in­
struments guide unmanned mis­
siles for our Nation’s defense and
control the flights of our astro­
nauts as they rocket into outer
space. Other electronic instru­
ments make it possible for man
to see, hear, and communicate
over vast distances. Electronic
devices direct, control, and test
production processes in industries
such as steel, petroleum, and
chemicals. Electronic data-processing equipment enables busi­
ness and Government to handle
tons of paper work with great ac­
curacy and speed. Hospitals use
electronic instruments to perform
laboratory tests and to check
body functions. In individual
homes, television and radio re­
ceivers provide information and
entertainment. Indications are
that electronics will play an even
greater role in the future.
In 1968, an estimated 1.1 mil­
lion workers were engaged in
manufacturing electronic prod­
ucts. Throughout the 1970’s, a
moderate increase in employment
is anticipated. Job opportunities
are expected to be particularly
favorable in plants producing in­
dustrial electronic equipment,
output of which is expected to
grow more rapidly than other
electronic products.

N ature and Location of
Electronics M an ufacturing
The heart of every electronic
product is a circuit or system
that includes electron > tubes,
semiconductors, and other elec­
tronic devices which regulate,



control, or direct the flow of
small, active particles of negative
electricity (electrons) through
the circuit. Because of their
unique functions, electronic de­
vices are finding many applica­
tions.
Electronic products may be
grouped into four major categor­
ies: (1) Government products,
(2) industrial products, (3) con­
sumer products, and (4) compo­
nents. In 1968, government prod­
ucts accounted for half of total
electronic sales. Industrial prod­
ucts accounted for about onefourth, and consumer products ac­
counted for about one-fifth; com­
ponents produced as replacement
parts were only a small percentage
of total sales. (Components pro­
duced as original equipment for
end products are included in the
shipments value of the end proucts.)
Government products include
electronic guidance and tele-met­
ering systems for missiles and
spacecraft; radar and other de­
tection devices; automatic com­
munications and computing sys­
tems; gyroscopes and other navi­
gational equipment; and fire con­
trols (such as air-to-air target
seeking and detonating equip­
ment. Government products are
also used in the fields of medicine,
education, crime detection, and
traffic control.
Important industrial electronic
products
include
computers;
commercial radio and television
broadcasting equipment; com­
mercial and private aircraft com­
munications and navigational ap­
paratus; and industrial testing,
measuring, and production con­
trol equipment. Principal con­
sumer products include television
sets, radios, phonographs, tape
recorders, and hearing aids.

Electronic components fall into
three broad classifications: tubes,
semiconductors, and “ other com­
ponents.” Tubes include receiv­
ing tubes, power tubes, television
picture tubes, and special purpose
tubes. Principal semiconductor
devices are transistors, diodes,
rectifiers, and microelectronic de­
vices, which include combinations
of miniaturized semiconductors.
“ Other componets” include items
such as capacitors, antennas, re­
sistors, transformers, relays, con­
nectors, and electronic switches.
Of the estimated 1.1 million
workers employed in electronics
manufacturing establishments in
1968, about three-fifths— 683,000
worked in plants producing end
products. About 366,000 of these
workers produced military and
space equipment; 189,000 pro­
duced industrial and commercial
products; and 128,000 produced
consumer items. The remaining
434,000 workers were in plants
making electronic components.
E l e c t r o n i c s manufacturing
plants are located in nearly every
State, but the majority of elec­
tronics manufacturing workers in
1968 were employed in seven
States: California, New York,
New Jersey, Illinois, Massachu­
setts, Pennsylvania, and Indiana.
Metropolitan areas with large
numbers of electronics manufac­
turing workers included Chicago,
Los Angeles, New York, Philadel­
phia, Newark, Boston, Baltimore,
and Indianapolis.
In addition to the employees
in
electronics
manufacturing
plants, about 79,000 electronics
workers were employed by the
Federal Government, universities,
and nonprofit researach centers
in activities such as research, de­
velopment, and the negotiation
and administration of contracts.

How Electronic Products Are M ade
Many plants manufacturing
electronic products specialize in
639

640
one type of end product, such as
television sets, radios, or elec­
tronic computers; or one type of
component, such as television pic­
ture tubes, power tubes, or semi­
conductors. In plants which pro­
duce several types of end prod­
ucts or components, each type
generally is made in a separate
department.
Subassemblies, such as tuners
and record changers, often are
made in plants specializing in
these products. Research and de­
velopment activities are perform­
ed in establishments specializing
in such work or in separate de­
partments
of
manufacturing
plants.
A large proportion of workers
in plants manufacturing end
products are engaged in assembly
operations. Inspecting and test­
ing of subassemblies and end
products are also important activi­
ties. Some end-product plants
have fabricating and processing
departments in which workers do

Engineers develop new products.




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

machining, sheet-metal work, and
cleaning and coating of metals
such as painting, plating, and
plastic molding.
In assembling radios, television
sets, and other end products pro­
duced in large quantities, major
subassemblies, such as circuit
boards or panels, transformers,
tuners, tubes, and speakers, are
attached mainly by hand onto a
chassis. A moving conveyor often
is used to transport the chassis
from one work station to another.
Assembled units are placed into
metal, plastic, or wooden cab­
inets. Where complex electronic
products are made in small lots,
as in the case of scientific and re­
search devices and electronic
equipment used in space explora­
tion, a small number of highly
trained specialists may assemble
a complete unit by hand.
Semiautomatic and automatic
machinery are being used more
frequently to perform processing
and assembly operations, particu­
larly where products are massproduced. For example, in the
manufacture of circuit boards,
many plants use automatic punch
presses to make holes in thin
sheets of plastic (one or both
sides of which is coated with a
thin layer of copper) so that com­
ponents can be attached. Ma­
chines are used to etch electrical
circuits, which replace wires on
the circuit boards. Machines also
position components into the
proper holes in the circuit boards.
Mechanical devices bend the
wires or metal “ ears” on the bot­
tom of the components, locking
them into place on the board.
Wire leads on the components are
commonly soldered to the etched
circuits in one continuous opera­
tion (called “ dip” or “ wave”
soldering).
Parts used in end products usu­
ally are 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 containters or jigs. During assembly op­
erations, components and subassemblies are inspected and
tested to locate and replace or
repair faulty parts or connections
or other defects.
In components manufacturing
plants, most assembly work is
“done by machine. Some types of
components usually are assem­
bled by hand, such as experi­
mental parts, special purpose
tubes, and extremely tiny semi­
conductors used in military and
space equipment. Electronic com­
ponents are inspected and tested
many times, beginning with vis­
ual inspection of raw materials as
they enter the plant and con­
tinuing through all stages of
manufacture.

Electronics M an u fac tu rin g
O ccupations
A wide variety of occupations,
requiring a broad range of train­
ing and skills, is found in plants
manufacturing electronic prod­
ucts. About half the workers in
electronics manufacturing are in
plant jobs (production, mainte­
nance, transportation, and serv­
ice); the rest are in white-collar
jobs (engineering, scientific, fi­
nance, administrative, clerical,
and sales).
The proportions of plant and
white-collar workers differ from
one establishment to another, de­
pending mainly on the products
being manufactured. For exam­
ple, the proportion of plant work­
ers is generally higher in estab­
lishments producing consumer
products than in establishments
manufacturing government prod­
ucts.
More than two-fifths of the
workers employed in electronics
manufacturing plants are women.

641

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ELECTRONICS MANUFACTURING

In some plants, particularly those
producing electron tubes and
semiconductors, women account
for half or more of total employ­
ment. Most women are employed
as semiskilled plant workers,
chiefly as assemblers, inspectors,
and testers, and as office work­
ers. However, opportunities for
women exist in nearly all types
of jobs in electronics manufactur­
ing.

Professional and Technical Occu­
pations. A large proportion of
electronics manufacturing work­
ers are in engineering, scientific,
and other technical jobs. Engi­
neers and scientists alone repre­
sent about 1 out of every 9 elec­
tronics workers. Generally, they
account for a much larger propor­
tion of employment in plants
making military and space equip­
ment than in those producing
other types of electronic products.
The largest group of engineers
is electrical or electronics engi­
neers. They generally are em­
ployed in research and develop­
ment, although many work in
production operations as design
engineers or as test methods and
quality control engineers. Elec­
tronics engineers also work as
field engineers, sales engineers, or
engineering liaison men.
Substantial numbers of me­
chanical engineers and industrial
engineers also are employed in
electronics manufacturing plants.
Mechanical engineers work as de­
sign engineers in product devel­
opment and in tool and equip­
ment design. They work also as
plant engineers— chiefly
con­
cerned with the maintenance lay­
out and operation of plant equip­
ment. Most industrial engineers
work as production engineers or
as efficiency, methods, or timestudy engineers. Other engineers
employed in electronics manufac­
turing include chemical, metal­
lurgical, and ceramic engineers.
Physicists make up the largest




Precision assembler works in surgically clean room.

group of scientists in electronics
manufacturing. Now that smaller
package
circuitry
has been
achieved through the develop­
ment of microminiaturization,
physicists are working to produce
the complete circuit. This process
is accomplished by integrating
elements that duplicate the func­
tions formerly performed by dis­
crete components such as capaci­
tors, resistors, and inductors, to­
gether with transistors. Many sci­
entists in electronics manufac­
turing are chemists and metal­
lurgists, employed mainly in re­
search work and in materials
preparation and testing. Mathe­
maticians and statisticians work
with engineers and scientists on
complex mathematical and statis­
tical problems, especially in the

design of military and space
equipment and computers. Statis­
ticians also are employed in the
fields of quality control, produc­
tion scheduling, and sales analy­
sis and planning. Industrial de­
signers work on the design of
electronic products and the
equipment used to manufacture
them.
Technicians— such as electron­
ics technicians, draftsmen, engi­
neering aids, laboratory techni­
cians, and mathematical assist­
ants— represent about 1 out of
every 15 electronics manufactur­
ing workers.
Many electronics technicians
are engaged in research and de­
velopment work, helping engi­
neers in the design and construc­
tion of experimental models.

642
They also are employed by manu­
facturers to work on electronic
equipment in customers’ estab­
lishments. Other electronics tech­
nicians work in highly technical
inspecting, testing, and assem­
bly jobs in the engineering labor­
atories of firms manufacturing
electronic products.
Draftsmen usually are employ­
ed in engineering departments
to prepare d r a w i n g s from
sketches or specifications furn­
ished by engineers. Manufactur­
ers of military and space equip­
ment generally employ a higher
proportion of draftsmen than do
manufacturers of other types of
electronic products.
Engineering aids are another
important group of technicians.
They assist engineers by making
calculations, sketches, and draw­
ings, and by conducting perform­
ance tests on components and
systems. Laboratory technicians
help physicists, chemists, and en­
gineers by performing duties such
as setting up apparatus and as­
sisting in laboratory analyses and
experiments. Some laboratory
technicians themselves may con­
duct analyses and experiments,
usually of a standardized, routine
nature. Mathematical assistants
help to solve mathematical prob­
lems, following procedures out­
lined by mathematicians. They
also operate test equipment used
in the development of electronic
computers.
Technical writers work closely
with engineers, particularly in
plants making military-space and
industrial-commercial products,
and in establishments doing re­
search and development work.
They prepare training and techni­
cal manuals describing the opera­
tion and maintenance of electron­
ic equipment. They also prepare
catalogs, product literature, and
project reports and proposals.
Specifications writers compile
lists of required measurements




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

and materials. Technical illustra­
tors draw pictures of electronic
equipment for technical publica­
tions and sales literature.

Administrative, Clerical, and Re­
lated Occupations. About 1 out of
4 workers in electronics manufac­
turing plants are in administra­
tive or other office jobs. Adminis­
trative workers include purchas­
ing agents, sales executives, per­
sonnel workers, advertising per­
sonnel, and marketing research
specialists. Clerks, secretaries,
stenographers, typists, and busi­
ness machine operators, many of
whom are women, are among the

thousands of other office workers
employed by electronics manu­
facturing firms. A small but grow­
ing proportion of these office
workers operate electronic com­
puters and auxiliary equipment.
Most of these computers are used
to process office records, includ­
ing payroll, production, costs,
sales, and inventory data.

Plant Occupations. About half of
electronics manufacturing em­
ployees work in assembly, in­
specting and testing, machining,
fabricating, processing, mainte­
nance, and other plant opera­
tions. The proportion of workers

Most assemblers are women.

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ELECTRONICS MANUFACTURING

in each of these operations differs
among electronics plants, depend­
ing largely on whether end prod­
ucts or components are produced
and the types manufactured. For
example, the proportion of assem­
blers is higher in plants making
components and consumer end
products than in plants produc­
ing military space equipment and
industrial-commercial products.
The proportion of machining and
fabricating workers is higher
among manufacturers of military
space equipment and industrialcommercial products than among
manufacturers of other types of
products.
Assembly occupations (D.O.T.
729.884; 720.884; 726.781 and
.884). Assemblers make up the
largest group of electronics plant
workers. Both end-product and
component manufacturing firms
employ assemblers with many
different skills. However, most as­
semblers are semiskilled workers.
Most end products are assem­
bled mainly by hand, using small
handtools, soldering irons, and
light welding devices. Assemblers
use diagrams, models, and colorcoded parts and wires to help
them in their work. Some assem­
bly work is done by following in­
structions presented on color
slides and tape recordings. Color
slides flash a picture of an assem­
bly sequence on a viewing screen,
while the assembler listens to re­
corded directions.
Precision assemblers install
components and subassemblies
into end products in which mov­
ing parts and mechanisms must
operate within clearances meas­
ured in thousandths, or even mil­
lionths, of an inch. Some of these
assembly workers do repair work,
experimental and developmental
work, and model assembly work.
Most precision assemblers are
employed in the manufacture of
military space and industrialcommercial electronic equipment.




Machines are used in some as­
sembly work on end products. For
example, in putting together subassemblies such as circuit boards,
automatic machines often are
used to position components on
the boards and to solder connec­
tions. Here the assemblers work
as machine operators or loaders.
Most components are assem­
bled by machines, since their as­
sembly involves many separate
but simple and repetitive opera­
tions. Even some types of minia­
turized semiconductors and other
components, made with parts
small enough to pass through the
eye of a needle, now are assem­
bled on highly complex machines.
Some of these machines are auto­
matically controlled.
Hand assembly is needed for
some components such as receiv­
ing tubes, special purpose tubes,
and some types of transistors,
diodes, capacitors, and resistors.
Hand assemblers only may per­
form a single operation on these
components as they move down
the assembly line, but some may
assemble completely a particular
type of component. Tiny compo­
nents often are hand-assembled
under magnifying lenses or pow­
erful microscopes.
Hand assemblers sometimes
may use machines to assist them
in performing assembly opera­
tions on components. For exam­
ple, precision welding equipment
may be used to weld connections
in microminiature components
and circuit assemblies. Some cir­
cuit assemblies are so small that
hundreds of components may be
precision welded in a cubic inch
of space. Machines also may be
used to position and hold compo­
nent parts during assembly oper­
ations.
Hand assemblers also are em­
ployed in electronics research
laboratories and in the research
and development departments of
electronics manufacturers. These

643
workers— frequently called elec­
tronics technicians— generally do
difficult assembly work on small
quantities of complex, often ex­
perimental, equipment. They also
may work on the development of
new ways to assemble large quan­
tities of components or subassem­
blies by machine. Some electron­
ics technicians install subassem­
blies into complex systems such
as those in guided missiles. These
hand assemblers usually must
know enough electronics theory
to understand the operation of
the items being assembled.
Most assemblers are women.
They are employed mainly as ma­
chine operators or tenders, and as
hand assemblers of items made in
large quantities. Men are em­
ployed chiefly in experimental as­
sembly work, in model assembly,
and in assembly jobs requiring
relatively heavy work. Men also
are employed in assembly depart­
ments as “ trouble shooters.”
These workers analyze end prod­
ucts and subassemblies, which
have failed routine performance
tests, to pinpoint the exact cause
of faulty operation.
Machining occupations. Metal
machining workers are employed
in most electronics manufactur­
ing plants, particularly those
making military-space and indus­
trial-commercial products. Ma­
chine-tool operators and machin­
ists operate power-driven ma­
chine tools to produce metal parts
of electronic products. Toolmak­
ers construct and repair jigs and
fixtures used in the fabrication
and assembly of parts. Diemakers specialize in making metal
forms (dies) used in punch and
power presses to shape metal
parts.
Fabricating occupations. Fabri­
cating workers are employed in
many electronics manufacturing
plants, but the largest proportion
is in establishments producing
industrial products. Among the

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

644
fabricating workers are sheetmetal workers who make frames,
chassis, and cabinets.

Glass blowers and glass lathe op­
erators (D.O.T. 674.782) are em­
ployed chiefly in electronic tube
experimentation and develop­
ment 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 and

shear operators.
Some fabricating jobs involvethe molding, firing, and glazing
of ceramics used as insulating
materials in many components.
Workers also may operate ma­
chines that mold plastic compo­
nents. In electron tube manufac­
turing, special fabricating work­
ers are employed. For example,
grid lathe operators (D.O.T.
725.884) make grids (devices in
electronic tubes which control the
flow of electrons) by winding fine
wire around two heavy parallel
wires. Other fabricating workers
include spot welders and coil
winders (D.O.T. 724.781 and
.884), and crystal grinders and
finishers (D.O.T. 726.884).
Processing occupations. A rela­
tively small but important group
of
electronics
manufacturing
workers is engaged in processing
activities, chiefly in plants pro­
ducing electronic components.
Electroplaters a n d t i n n e r s
(D.O.T. 501.885) coat many
parts with metal. Anodizers
(D.O.T. 501.782) treat parts in
electrolytic and chemical baths to
prevent corrosion. Silk screen
printers. (D.O.T. 726.887) print
patterns on circuit boards and on
parts of electronic components.

Etching

equipment

operators

(D.O.T. 590.885) do chemical
etching of c o p p e r on circuit
boards.
Processing workers also im­




pregnate or coat coils and other
electronic
components
with
waxes, oils, plastics or other ma­
terials. Some operate machines
which encase microminature com­
ponents in plastic resin to join
and insulate them in circuits, seal
out moisture, and reduce chances
of connection failure caused by
heat and vibration.
Another group of processing
workers operate 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
furnace fires (D.O.T. 590.885)
rid tubes of foreign deposits. In
tube manufacturing, exhaust op­
erators (D.O.T. 725.884) and
sealers (D.O.T. 692.885) operate
gas flame machines which seal
the mount (the part of an elec­
tronic tube consisting of a Bakelite base and stem) in the tube,
clear the tube of impurities, ex­
haust the gas, and seal the tube.
Testing and inspection. Test­
ing and inspection in electronics
manufacturing begin when raw
materials enter the plants and
continue throughout fabricating
operations. Finished components
and end products undergo thor­
ough testing and inspection, fre­
quently including operation for a
period of time, before shipment.
In end-product manufacturing
plants, testers use voltmeters, os­
cilloscopes, 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 opera­
tional tester.
Some testing jobs require tech­
nically trained workers who have
had several years of experience in
electronic testing. These jobs are
commonly found in research and
development work, where elec­

Inspector tests power supply module.

tronics technicians test, adjust,
and aline circuits and systems as
part of their overall responsibili­
ty. These jobs also found in com­
plex production work, such as the
manufacture of missiles and
spacecraft.
In component manufacturing
plants, components are checked
manually by testers using various
types of test meters or routed me­
chanically through automatic test
equipment.
Some
automatic
equipment can check a large
number of component character­
istics, produce a punched tape of
test results, and sort the compo­
nents into batches for shipping.
Although many of these workers
simply are called c o m p o n e n t
testers, others have job titles
which reflect the type of compo­
nents they test, such as trans­
former tester, coil tester, and
magnetic component t e s t e r .
Workers who feed or monitor au­
tomatic test equipment often are
called test-set operators or test­
ing-machine operators.
The work of inspectors in end-

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ELECTRONICS MANUFACTURING

product plants varies from check­
ing incoming materials to inspect­
ing subassemblies and final prod­
ucts for flaws in circuit assembly,
etching, plating, painting, and
labeling. Electronic assembly in­
spectors (D.O.T. 722.281) ex­
amine assembled electronic units
to make certain that they con­
form to blueprints and specifica­
tions, and check wire routing,
electrical connections, and qual­
ity of units. Mechanical and pre­
cision inspectors check mechani­
cal assemblies and precision
parts. Inspectors in end-product
plants may use tools such as
measuring scales, micrometers,
calipers, and magnifying glasses
in their work.
Inspectors in component manu­
facturing plants check incoming
raw materials and subassemblies
before, during, and after fabricat­
ing and processing 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, defective etches, and
identifying labels. Some inspec­
tors make repairs on defective
components.
Tools used by inspectors in
components plants may include
magnifying lenses, micrometers,
calipers, tweezers, and, in some
circumstances, m i c r o s c o p e s .
These inspectors may have job
titles that indicate the work they
do, such as incoming materials
inspector, plating inspector, pow­
er tube inspector, coil inspector,
machine parts inspector, and pre­
cision inspector.
Maintenance o c c u p a t i o n s .
Many maintenance workers who
have different types of training
are employed in electronics manu­
facturing plants to maintain ma­
chinery and equipment. Skilled
electricians are responsible for
the proper operation of electrical
equipment. Machine and equip­




ment repairmen perform me­
chanical repairs. Hydraulic me­
chanics specialize in maintaining
hydraulic equipment. Mainte­
nance machinists and welders
build and repair equipment, jigs,
and fixtures. Air-conditioning and
refrigeration mechanics are em­
ployed in electronics plants which
are air-conditioned and have spe­
cial refrigerated and dust-free
rooms. Painters, plumbers, pipe­
fitters, carpenters, sheet-metal
workers, and other building main­
tenance craftsmen also are em­
ployed in electronics plants.

Other plant occupations. Parts
changer (D.O.T. 729.381) is an
other important occupation in
electronic manufacturing plants.
These workers repair assembled
electronic products which have
been tagged for replacement of
defective parts. Women frequent­
ly are employed as parts changers.
Many workers are employed in
materials movement and han­
dling. These workers include op­
erators of plant trucks and trac­
tors; forklift operators who stack
crates and load and unload trucks
and boxcars; and truckdrivers
who handle transportation out­
side the plant. Other occupations
include boiler operator and stat­
ionary engineer.
(Detailed discussions of profes­
sional, technical, mechanical, and
other occupations, found not only
in
electronics
manufacturing
plants but also in other indus­
tries, are given elsewhere in the
Handbook in sections covering
the individual occupations.)

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Electronic m a n u f a c t u r i n g
plants employ many engineers,
scientists, and technicians be­
cause of the technical nature of
plant production operations and
the great emphasis on research

645
and development work. Begin­
ning engineering jobs usually are
filled by recent graduates of en­
gineering colleges (some with ad­
vanced degrees). A small num­
ber of workers without college de­
grees are upgraded to professional
engineering classifications from
occupations such as engineering
assistant and electronics techni­
cian. Workers who become engi­
neers in this way usually have
taken
advanced
electronics
courses in night school or in other
training programs. T o keep up
with new developments in their
fields and to help them qualify
for promotion, professional and
technical personnel obtain addi­
tional training, read technical
publications, and attend lectures
and technical demonstrations.
Almost all mathematicians,
physicists, and other scientists
employed in electronics manufac­
turing plants have college de­
grees, and many have advanced
degrees. Job prospects are usu­
ally better for scientists who have
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 elec­
tronics technicians have attended
either a public, private, or Armed
Forces technical school. Some
have obtained their training
through apprenticeships, usually
of 3 or 4 years’ duration. Appli­
cants with a high school educa­
tion, including courses in mathe­
matics and science, are preferred
for these apprenticeships. Some
workers become electronics tech­
nicians by being upgraded from
jobs such as tester and experi­
mental assembler, after they have
developed required skills on the
job and acquired the necessary
knowledge in basic electronics
theory, mathematics, drafting,
and reading of schematic dia­
grams. This knowledge usually is

646
obtained by taking courses in
company-operated classes, night
school, junior college, technical
school, or by correspondence.
Electronics technicians need
color vision, manual dexterity,
and good eye-hand coordination.
As in the case of other technical
workers, they must be able to un­
derstand technical publications.
Some technicians who do final
testing that requires the opera­
tion of radio transmitting equip­
ment must hold licenses from the
Federal Communications Com­
mission as first- or second-class
commercial radiotelephone opera­
tors.
Laboratory technicians, engi­
neering and scientific aids, and
mathematical assistants frequent­
ly have had 1 year of college
training or more in a scientific
or engineering field, but have not
completed course requirements
for a degree. In other cases, these
workers have been upgraded from
jobs as lower grade assistants in
engineering laboratories or as
high-grade testers in production
departments. In hiring lower
grade assistants, electronics firms
give preference to high school
graduates who have completed
high school courses in mathe­
matics, physics, and chemistry.
Draftsmen usually enter their
trade by taking a course in draft­
ing at a trade or technical school;
a few have completed a 3- or 4year apprenticeship. Some quali­
fy for their jobs under an in­
formal arrangement with their
employers which provides for
both on-the-job training and parttime schooling. Because many
draftsmen must understand the
basic principles of electronic cir­
cuits to do their work, they
should study basic electronic
theory and circuits and the read­
ing of electronic schematic dia­
grams.
Technical writers must have a
flair for writing and are usually




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

required to have some technical
training. Electronics firms prefer
to hire those who have had some
technical institute or college
training in science or engineering.
Some have college engineering de­
grees. Many have college degrees
in English and journalism and
have received their technical
training on the job and by at­
tending company-operated eve­
ning classes. Technical illlustrators usually have attended special
schools of art or design.
Many tool and die makers, ma­
chinists, electricians, pipefitters,
carpenters, and other craftsmen
in
electronics
manufacturing
learn their trades by completing
a 4- or 5-year apprenticeship.
Some enter these trades through
upgrading from helpers’ jobs.
Some take courses at vocational
schools.
Formal training in electronics
usually is not necessary for work­
ers entering plant jobs, but com­
pletion of high school frequently
is required. Job applicants may
have to pass aptitude tests and
demonstrate skill for particular
types of work. On-the-job train­
ing, usually for a short period,
generally is provided for workers
who have had no previous experi­
ence. Assemblers, testers, and in­
spectors need good vision, good
color perception, manual dexter­
ity, and patience.
Requirements for filling ad­
ministrative and other office jobs
are similar to those in other in­
dustries. Certain beginning ad­
ministrative jobs in electronics
manufacturing generally are open
only to college graduates having
degrees in business administra­
tion, accounting, or engineering.
More and more employers are re­
quiring college training for ad­
ministrative jobs in advertising,
personnel, accounting, and sales.
For clerical jobs, employers usu­
ally prefer applicants who are
high school graduates with spe­

cial training in stenography, typ­
ing, bookeeping, and office ma­
chine operation.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Electronics manufacturing will
provide tens of thousands of job
opportunities annually through­
out the 1970’s. A moderate rate
of growth in electronics employ­
ment is expected over this pe­
riod, assuming relatively full em­
ployment is in the Nation’s econ­
omy and the high levels of eco­
nomic activity needed to achieve
this goal. In addition to the many
thousands of job opportunities
resulting from e m p l o y m e n t
growth, large numbers of job
openings will result from the need
to replace workers who transfer
to other fields of work, retire, or
die. Retirements and deaths
alone will provide an estimated
31,000 job openings annually.
The rate of employment growth
in electronics manufacturing will
vary by major product category.
The most rapid increase is ex­
pected for industrial products.
Businessmen are expected to
spend increasing amounts for
electronic equipment to automate
and mechanize data processing
and production processes, espe­
cially for items such as com­
puters and numerical controls
for machine tools. Demand also
is expected to grow for navi­
gational, test, educational, and
radio communications equipment.
Production of electronic equip­
ment for the medical and atomic
energy fields also will expand
greatly. In addition, many new
fields are being explored for ap­
plications of electronics devices,
including automated highways
and railways, and water desalini­
zation and purification.
The demand for consumer
items also is expected to increase
rapidly as population, family for-

647

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ELECTRONICS MANUFACTURING

mations, and personal spendable
incomes rise over the period. The
demand for government equip­
ment is expected to continue to
grow over the period. This projec­
tion is based on the assumption
that in the late 1970’s the level
of defense expenditures, an im­
portant determinant of output
in this product category, will be
somewhat higher than the level
prior to the Vietnam buildup; ap­
proximately the level of the early
1960’s. Moreover, it assumes that
expenditures for programs to ex­
plore outer space and the ocean
depths will continue at approxi­
mately current levels. If these as­
sumptions should not be realized,
employment levels in this sector
of the industry will be affected.
The increase in electronics em­
ployment in all product categor­
ies probably will not be as great
as the expansion in output, how­
ever, because technological im­
provements in production meth­
ods are expected to increase out­
put per worker. For example, in­
creasing mechanization of opera­
tions formerly done by hand will
tend to reduce labor require­
ments, particularly in plants
where products are mass-pro­
duced, such as television and ra­
dio sets, and components. How­
ever, mechanized manufacturing
processes are difficult to adapt
to the fabrication of many types
of highly complex electronic
products.
Although employment in elec­
tronics manufacturing is expected
to grow at a moderate pace
through the 1970’s, the rates of
growth will vary among occupa­
tional groups and individual oc­
cupations. For example, the de­
mand for skilled maintenance
personnel, particularly instru­
ment repairmen, is expected to
rise at a rapid rate, because of
the need to maintain and repair
the increasing amounts of com­
plex machinery. On the other




Average
hourly
earnings
Type of product

All manufacturing industries .........................................
Major electronics manufacturing industries:
Military-space and industrial-commercial electronics end
products .............................................................................
Electron tubes.......................................................................
Radio and television receiving sets, and phonographs.......
Semiconductors and other components, except tubes......

hand, employment of semiskilled
workers is anticipated to rise
slowly because of the growing me­
chanization and automation of
assembly line operations.
The overall demand for engi­
neers, scientists, and technicians
is expected to increase because
of continued high expenditures
for research and development,
and the continuing trend toward
the production of complex equip­
ment. Among professional and
technical workers, the greatest
demand will be for engineers hav­
ing advanced degrees, particular­
ly those who have a background
in certain specialized fields, in­
cluding quantum mechanics, sol­
id-state circuitry, product de­
sign, and industrial engineering.
The demand for engineers pos­
sessing selling ability will rise
rapidly because the increasing
complexity of industrial and com­
mercial equipment will require
salesmen with highly technical
backgrounds. The demand for
mathematicians and physicists
will be particularly great because
of expanding research in com­
puter and laser technology.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Average hourly and weekly
earnings of production workers
in electronics manufacturing in­
dustries vary considerably by
type of product produced. As
shown in the accompanying tabu­
lation, production workers in in­
dustries making military-space
and industrial-commercial prod­
ucts had higher average earnings

Average
weekly
earnings

$3.01

$122.51

3.21
2.51
2.77
2.51

132.25
97.64
108.86
99.40

in 1968 than those in industries
producing other types of elec­
tronic products.
Earnings of individual produc­
tion workers may differ from the
averages shown above, since such
earnings depend not only on the
type of plant in which they work
but also on factors such as skill
level and experience, length of
service, geographic location, and
amount of overtime.
Electronics workers generally
receive premium pay for overtime
work and for work on Sundays
and holidays. Virtually all plants
provide extra pay for evening
and night shift work.
Many workers in electronics
manufacturing plants receive 2 or
3 weeks’ vacation with pay, de­
pending on their length of serv­
ice, and from 6 to 8 paid holidays
a year. Almost all electronics
workers are covered by health
and life insurance plans; many
are covered by pension plans and
other fringe benefits.
Working conditions in elec­
tronics manufacturing compare
favorably with those in other in­
dustries. Plants are usually well
lighted, clean, and quiet. Many
plants are relatively new and are
located in suburban and semirural areas. Most plant depart­
ments are air conditioned where
dust-free conditions or air tem­
perature control is necessary for
the manufacture of certain types
of electronic equipment. The
work in most electronics occupa­
tions is not strenuous. Many as­
sembly line operations are re­
petitious. Music during working

648
hours, cafeterias, recreational fa­
cilities, and social programs are
provided for employees by some
electronics manufacturing firms.
The frequency of injuries in
electronics manufacturing is far
below the average in manufactur­
ing as a whole, and injuries are
usually less severe.
Many workers in electronics
manufacturing are covered by la­




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

bor-management a g r e e m e n t s .
The principal unions involved are
the International Union of Elec­
trical, Radio and Machine Work­
ers; International Brotherhood of
Electrical Workers; International
Association of Machinists and
Aerospace Workers; and the
United Electrical, Radio and Ma­
chine Workers of America (Ind.).

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Further information concern­
ing careers in electronics manu­
facturing can be obtained from
the public relations department
of individual electronics manufac­
turing companies and from:
Electronic Industries Association,
2001 Eye St. NW., Washington,
D.C. 20006.

O C C U P A T IO N S IN T H E
IN D U S T R IA L C H E M IC A L IN D U S T R Y

The industrial chemical indus­
try has grown, in just a few dec­
ades, into one of the great manu­
facturing industries of our Na­
tion. An important reason for this
growth has been the industry’s
huge expenditures for research
and development activities, which
have provided many new and im­
proved products for its customers
— mainly other manufacturing
industries. A wide variety of in­
dustrial chemical products con­
tribute to our everyday needs and
comforts, e.g., synthetic fibers are
used in clothing and rugs, and
plastics in dinnerware and furni­
ture. Also, they are essential for
the manufacture of missile and
space equipment, rocket propul­
sion fuels, and for other national
defense and space materials.
In 1968, about 530,000 wage
and salary workers were em­
ployed in the industrial chemical
industry in a wide range of occu­
pations. Job requirements varied
from graduate college degrees for
some scientists and engineers to a
few days of on-the-job training
for some plant workers.

N ature of the Industry
The industrial chemical indus­
try is made up of plants which
manufacture industrial inorganic
and organic chemicals, plastic
materials and synthetic resins,
synthetic rubber and synthetic
and other man-made fibers, ex­
cept glass. These chemicals are
used mainly by other companies
in the chemical industry, and by
other manufacturing industries as
raw materials or as processing
agents to make their own prod­
ucts. Industrial chemicals are un­
like other chemical products,




such as drugs, soaps, detergents,
cosmetics, perfumes, paints, and
fertilizers, which are sold directly
to the consumer without further
processing. The latter are not dis­
cussed in this statement.
Industrial chemical p l a n t s
make organic chemicals from raw
materials obtained from the re­
mains of prehistoric life such as
coal, petroleum, and natural gas,
or from living materials such as
agricultural and forest products.
Some products of organic chemi­
cals such as synthetic fibers, syn­
thetic rubber, and plastics are
well known. Among those less
well known to the public are coal
tar crudes, benzene, acetone, and
formaldehyde. The principal us­
ers of organic chemicals include
the textile, plastics products, rub­
ber, and food-processing indus­
tries.
Inorganic chemicals come from
nonliving matter, such as salt,
sulfur, mineral ores, and lime­
stone. They are basic materials
for making, or helping to make,
other chemicals as well as fin­
ished products, such as steel,
glass, paper, and gasoline. In at
least one respect, the manufac­
ture of chemicals differs from the
manufacture of most other prod­
ucts— the ingredients which are
used to make chemicals undergo
reactions which produce com­
pounds vastly different in nature
and appearance from those of the
original raw materials. For ex­
ample, by rearranging and com­
bining the molecules of coal, air,
and water, the chemists can pro­
duce nylon, a product having no
similarity to its raw materials.
A modern chemical plant is
made up of huge towers, tanks,
and buildings linked together by
a network of pipes. These struc­

Operator descends after completing
maintenance inspection of reactor unit.

tures contain the various types
of equipment needed to process
raw materials into chemical prod­
ucts. Raw materials go through
several processing
operations
such as drying, heating, cooling,
mixing, evaporating, and filtering.
Between each operation, the ma­
terials, which may be liquid, sol­
id, or gas, are transported by
pipes or conveyors. Throughout
these operations, automatic con­
trol devices regulate the flow of
materials, the combination of
chemicals, and the temperature,
pressure, and time needed for
each operation. These control de­
vices make it possible for tons of
material to be processed in one
continuous operation with very
little manual handling of mate­
rials.
Approximately 2,800 plants in
the United States make indus­
trial chemicals. About two-thirds
of the plants have fewer than 50
649

650
employees each. However, more
than one-half of industrial chemi­
cal workers are employed in very
large plants of 500 or more em­
ployees each. Chemical plants are
usually located on the outskirts
of industrial centers. Sometimes
plants are built near the sources
of raw material; for example,
plants which produce chemicals
made from petroleum and natural
gas are located near the oilfields
and refineries of Texas, Califor­
nia, and Louisiana.
Although industrial chemical
workers are employed in most
States, more than 60 percent of
the employees and more than
one-half the plants are in the fol­
lowing 10 States: New Jersey,
Texas, New York, Tennessee,
Virginia, Pennsylvania, Dela­
ware, West Virginia, Michigan,
and Ohio.

O ccupations in the Industry
Workers with many different
levels of skills and education are
employed in the plants, offices,
and laboratories of industrial
chemical firms. More than 3 out
of every 5 employees are engaged
in processing operations, mainte­
nance duties, or other plant-re­
lated activities. A large number
of scientists, engineers, and other
technical personnel are also em­
ployed because of the highly
technical nature of chemical
products and the methods used
to produce them. Administrative
and professional employees, such
as purchasing agents, salesmen,
accountants, lawyers, and person­
nel officers, make up another siz­
able segment of the industry’s
work force. In addition, large
numbers of clerical workers, such
as bookeepers, stenographers,
typists, and office machine opera­
tors, are employed.
About 1 out of every 8 workers
in the industrial chemical indus­




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

try is a woman. Most women in
this industry work in clerical jobs,
although some work in chemical
laboratories as research chemists
or as laboratory technicians and
assistants. In a few industrial
chemical plants, women are em­
ployed as chemical operators or as
packers.

Plant Occupations. Plant work­
ers, who represent 3 out of every
5 employees in the industrial
chemical industry, can generally
be divided into three major occu­
pational groups: Processing work­
ers, who operate the chemical­
processing equipment; mainte­
nance workers, who maintain,
install, and repair machinery,
pipes, and equipment; and other
plant workers, such as stock
clerks, material handlers, and
truckdrivers.
Process equipment operators
and their helpers are the largest
occupational group in the indus­
trial chemical industry. Many of
these operators are highly skilled
workers. C h e m i c a l operators

(D.O.T. 558.885 and 559.782)
control the various pieces of
equipment which convert raw
materials into chemical products.
Operators are responsible for
carrying out instructions given to
them by the supervisor in charge.
Operators set dials on devices that
measure the exact amount of ma­
terials to be processed and con­
trol temperature, pressure, and
flow of materials. They keep a
record of operations and report
any sign of breakdown of equip­
ment. They may use instruments
which measure and test chemicals
or they may send samples of
chemicals to laboratory techni­
cians in the testing laboratory.
They may be assisted by chemi­
cal operators of less skill, as well
as by helpers. Sometimes chemi­
cal operators are classified accord­
ing to the type of equipment they
operate, such as filterer, grinder,
or mixer.
The industry employs many
skilled maintenance workers to
prevent interruptions of its high­
ly automated production proc-

Operator monitors control of process reactors.

OCCUPATIONS IN THE INDUSTRIAL CHEMICAL INDUSTRY

651
workers, such as guards, watch­
men, and janitors, whose duties
are similar to those of such work­
ers in other industries.

Scientific and Technical Occupa­
tions. The industrial chemical in­
dustry is one of the Nation’s
largest employers of scientific and
technical personnel. About 1 out
of every 6 employees in this in­
dustry is in some activity requir­
ing scientific, engineering, or tech­
nical training. About 40 percent
of these employees work in lab­
oratories, developing new chemi­
cal products and new methods of
production as well as performing
basic research. About one-third
are involved in the production of
chemicals and in other plant op­
erations. The remaining scientific
and technical personnel are in
analysis and testing work, and in

Technician examines manmade fiber during production process.

esses. Maintenance skills are also
very important because of the ex­
tremes of temperature, pressure,
and corrosion to which pipes, vats,
and other plant equipment are
subjected. Included among main­
tenance workers are pipefitters,
who lay out, install, and repair
pipes and pipefitting; mainte­
nance machinists, who make and
repair metal parts for machines
and equipment; electricians, who
maintain and repair wiring, mo­
tors, switches, and other electrical
equipment; and instrument re­
pairmen, who install and repair
electrical and electronic instru­




ments and control devices. In
some chemical plants, the duties
of several maintenance jobs may
be combined into a single job and
performed by one maintenance
man.
Plant workers who do not op­
erate or maintain equipment per­
form a variety of other tasks in
industrial chemical plants. Some
drive trucks and tractors to make
deliveries to various parts of the
plant; some load and unload ma­
terials on trucks, trains, or ships;
and other workers keep inventory
records of stock and tools. The
industry also employs custodial

Chemist conducts research on polymers.

652

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

administrative or sales positions
requiring technical background.
Chemists and chemical engi­
neers make up the largest propor­
tion of scientific and technical
personnel in the industrial chemi­
cal industry. Many chemists work
in research and development lab­
oratories. A large number work
in production departments, an­
alyzing and testing chemicals in
order to control their quality
during processing. Some chem­
ists are supervisors of plant work­
ers; others are technical salesmen,
technical writers, or administra­
tors whose positions require tech­
nical knowledge.

Chemical engineers apply their
knowledge of both chemistry and
engineering to the design, con­
struction, operation, and improve­
ment of chemical equipment and
plants. They convert processes
developed in a laboratory into
large-scale production methods,
by using the most economical
manufacturing techniques. Some
chemical engineers are employed
in production departments and
others are in selling, customer
service, market research, and
writing jobs which require tech­
nical knowledge and skill.
Other types of engineers are
also employed in industrial chem­
ical firms. Mechanical engineers
design and lay out power and
heating equipment, such as steam
turbines. They often supervise the
installation, operation, and main­
tenance of chemical processing
equipment. Electrical engineers
design and develop electrical and
electronic machinery and equip­
ment, such as control devices and
instruments, as well as facilities
for generating and distributing
electric power.
In addition to the large number
of such professional personnel, the
industry employs many technical
assistants such as laboratory tech­
nicians, draftsmen, and engineer­




Chemical engineer checks plant designer's calculations.

ing aids. Laboratory technicians
assist chemists and engineers in
research and development work
and in quality control. They may
perform simple routine tests or
experiments, or do highly tech­
nical testing and analyses of
chemical materials, depending on

their training and experience.
Much of the work of laboratory
technicians consists of conduct­
ing tests and recording the results
— often in the form of simple re­
ports, charts, or graphs— for inter­
pretation by chemists and chem­
ical engineers.

OCCUPATIONS IN THE INDUSTRIAL CHEMICAL INDUSTRY

Administrative, Clerical and Re­
lated Occupations. About 1 out of
every 5 employees in the indus­
trial chemical industry is an ad­
ministrative, clerical, or other
white-collar worker. Many highlevel administrative and manage­
ment positions are filled by men
with training in chemistry or
chemical engineering. At the top
of the administrative group are
the executives who make policy
decisions concerning matters of
finance, types of products to man­
ufacture, and location of plants.
To make such decisions, execu­
tives require the help of a large
body of specialized personnel in
the company. Some of these work­
ers are accountants, purchasing
agents, sales representatives, law­
yers, and personnel employed in
activities such as industrial rela­
tions, public relations, transpor­
tation, advertising, and market
research. Other workers are re­
quired to assist these specialized
administrative workers. For ex­
ample, clerical employees keep
records on personnel, payroll, raw
materials, sales, shipments, and
plant maintenance.
(Detailed discussions of pro­
fessional, technical, mechanical,
and other occupations found not
only in the industrial chemical in­
dustry but in other industries as
well are given elsewhere in this
Handbook in the sections cover­
ing the individual occupations.
See index for page numbers.)

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and Advancem ent
The industrial chemical indus­
try generally hires inexperienced
workers for processing and main­
tenance jobs and trains them on
the job. Companies in the indus­
try prefer to hire young workers
who are high school graduates.
In many plants, a new worker
is sent to a labor pool from which




he is assigned to jobs such as
filling barrels and moving mate­
rials. After several months, he
may be transferred to one of the
processing departments when a
vacancy occurs. As he gains ex­
perience, he moves to more skill­
ed jobs in his department. Thus,
he may advance from laborer to
chemical operator helper, to as­
sistant chemical operator, and
then to skilled chemical operator.
Skilled processing workers are
rarely recruited from other
plants.
Many industrial chemical com­
panies have on-the-job training
programs, which may last from
their maintenance shops. These
programs, which may last from
a few months to several years, in­
clude some classroom instruction
related to the trainees’ particular
work. Instrument repair trainees
often learn how to assemble and
repair instruments in the factories
which manufacture them. Many
companies encourage s k i l l e d
maintenance workers as well as
trainees to take courses related
to their jobs in local vocational
schools and technical institutes,
or to enroll in correspondence
courses. Upon the successful com­
pletion of these courses, workers
are reimbursed for part or all of
the tuition.
A bachelor’s degree in engi­
neering, chemistry, or one of the
other sciences is the minimum
educational requirement for en­
try into scientific and engineer­
ing jobs in the industrial chemi­
cal industry. For jobs in research
laboratories, applicants with ad­
vanced degrees are generally pre­
ferred. Some companies have
formal training programs for
young college graduates with en­
gineering or scientific back­
grounds. These men work for
brief periods in the various divi­
sions of the plant to gain a broad
knowledge of chemical manufac­
turing operations before being as­

653
signed to a particular depart­
ment. Other firms immediately
assign junior chemists or engi­
neers to a specific activity such
as research, process development,
production, or sales.
Technicians in the industrial
chemical industry qualify for
their jobs in many different ways.
Companies prefer to hire men
and women who have obtained a
formal education in technical in­
stitutes or junior colleges. How­
ever, most workers become tech­
nicians through on-the-job train­
ing and experience. Generally, in­
dustrial chemical firms select
young men from their labor pool
and give them training while they
work at one of the technician
jobs. Sometimes, technicians may
be sent to a technical institute
for training, usually at company
expense. Students who have not
completed all requirements for a
college degree, especially those
who have received some educa­
tion in mathematics, science, or
engineering, are often employed
in technician jobs.
Laboratory technicians begin
their work in routine jobs as as­
sistants and advance to jobs of
greater responsibility after they
have acquired additional experi­
ence and have shown their ability
to work without close supervision.
Inexperienced draftsmen usually
begin as copyists or tracers. With
additional experience and train­
ing, they may advance to more
skilled and responsible jobs as
draftsmen.
Administrative positions fre­
quently are filled by men and
women who have college degrees
in business administration, mar­
keting, accounting, economics,
statistics, industrial relations, or
other specialized fields. Some
companies have advanced train­
ing programs in which they give
their new employees additional
training in their chosen special­
ties.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

654
Clerks, bookkeepers, stenog­
raphers, and typists in industrial
chemical firms generally have
had commercial courses in high
school or business school. Al­
though the qualifications and
duties of administrative sales,
clerical, and related occupations
in this industry are similar to
those in other industries, a
knowledge of chemistry is of­
ten helpful. This is especially
true of those sales jobs in which
it is necessary to give technical
assistance to customers.

E m ploym ent O utlook
The growing industrial chemi­
cal industry is expected to pro­
vide many thousands of job op­
portunities for new workers each
year through the 1970’s.
In addition to a moderate
growth in employment in the in­
dustry, large numbers of job
openings will be created by re­
tirements, deaths, or transfers to
jobs in other fields of work. R e­
tirements and deaths alone prob­
ably will provide, on the aver­
age, more than 10,000 openings
each year through the 1970’s.
The industrial chemical indus­
try’s emphasis on research and
development is expected to con­
tinue to stimulate the growth of
this dynamic industry, which has
far outstripped most other major
industries in the development of
new products. Some of these prod­
ucts, such as plastics and syn­
thetic fibers, have not only cre­
ated completely new markets, but
also have competed successfully
in markets previously dominated
by wood, natural textile fibers,
and metals. They are expected to
continue to make inroads into
these markets. A plentiful sup­
ply of the raw materials used in
chemical manufacturing is also
favorable to the industry’s future
growth.




The atomic energy field is an
area where continued growth, in
civilian as well as military appli­
cations, will favorably affect the
demand for industrial chemicals.
These chemicals are used in vari­
ous aspects of atomic energy
work, such as the processing and
purification of uranium ores and
the development and operation of
nuclear reactors.
Although industrial chemical
production has grown rapidly,
employment has increased at a
much slower rate. Since 1958, the
number of industrial chemical
workers has grown about 26 per­
cent in contrast with output,
which has more than doubled.
The major reason for this differ­
ence is the industry’s emphasis
on improved methods of making
chemicals. The widespread use of
automatic processing and con­
trol equipment has enabled the
industry to increase its produc­
tion considerably with a relative­
ly small increase in labor. In­
creases in output per worker are
expected to continue in the years
ahead, as new plants with the
latest equipment are constructed
and more modern devices are in­
stalled in the older plants.
Some occupational groups in
the industry are expected to grow
faster than others. For example,
the number of professional and ad­
ministrative jobs is expected to
increase more rapidly than the
number of plant (processing and
maintenance) workers if recent
trends in this industry continue.
Emphasis on research and devel­
opment and greater complexity
of products and processes are ex­
pected to increase the need for
chemists, engineers, technicians,
and other technical personnel.
Most of the demand for addi­
tional plant workers will be for
skilled maintenance workers,
such as instrument repairmen,
pipefitters,
electricians,
and
maintenance machinists, because

of the increasing use of instru­
mentation and automatic equip­
ment in processing operations.
Process equipment operators will
continue to be the largest occupa­
tional group in the industry, al­
though employment of these
workers is not expected to in­
crease as much as employment of
maintenance workers.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Production workers in the in­
dustrial chemical industry are
among the higher paid factory
workers. Average earnings are
relatively high because of the
large proportion of workers in
skilled occupations. In 1968 pro­
duction workers in plants produc­
ing industrial inorganic and or­
ganic chemicals had average earn­
ings of $152.76 a week or $3.62
an hour and those in plants pro­
ducing plastics materials and syn­
thetic rubber, resins, and fibers
had average earnings of $136.53
a week or $3.22 an hour. In com­
parison, average earnings in 1968
for production workers in manu­
facturing industries as a whole
were $122.51 a week or $3.01 an
hour.
Entry salaries for inexperi­
enced chemists and chemical en­
gineers in the industrial chemical
industry are among the highest in
American industry, according to
a 1968 survey conducted by the
American Chemical Society. In
this industry, the median start­
ing salary was $725 a month for
chemists with a bachelor’s de­
gree and $800 a month for chemi­
cal engineers with a bachelor’s
degree. Chemists and chemical
engineers with graduate degrees
received higher starting salaries.
Paid vacations are universal in
this industry and are generally
based on length of service. For
example, workers in many plants
receive a 1-week vacation after

OCCUPATIONS IN THE INDUSTRIAL CHEMICAL INDUSTRY

1 year of employment, 2 weeks
after 3 years, 3 weeks after 10
years and 4 weeks after 20 years.
Most workers are covered by
insurance plans. These plans in­
clude life, sickness, accident, hos­
pitalization, and surgical insur­
ance. Practically all plants have
pension plans.
Many chemical workers are
employed in plants that operate
around the clock— three shifts a
day, 7 days a week. Owing to the
widespread industry practice of
rotating shifts, processing work­
ers can expect to work the sec­
ond or third shift at one time or
another. Nearly all workers re­
ceive extra pay for shift work,
about 10 cents more an hour for
the second shift, and about 15
cents more an hour for the third
or night shift. Very few mainte­
nance workers are employed on
these shifts. Work in the industry
has little seasonal variation and
regular workers have year-round
jobs.
Except for work performed by
laborers and material handlers,
most industrial chemical jobs re­




quire little physical effort. Much
of the plant work involves tend­
ing, inspecting, repairing, or
maintaining m a c h i n e r y and
equipment, since most of the
process operations are controlled
automatically or semiautomatically. Duties require some work­
ers to climb stairs and ladders to
considerable heights. Other jobs
are performed out of doors in all
kinds of weather.
In some plants, workers may
be exposed to dust, disagreeable
odors, or high temperatures.
Chemical companies, however,
have reduced the discomforts
arising from these conditions by
installing ventilating or air-con­
ditioning systems. Safety meas­
ures, such as protective clothing
and eye glasses (usually provided
by the company), warning signs,
showers and eye baths near dan­
gerous work stations, and firstaid stations, have also reduced
hazards. These measures have
helped to make the injury-fre­
quency rate (number of disabling
injuries for each million man­
hours worked) in the industrial

655
chemical industry less than half
that for all manufacturing in­
dustries.
Most production workers in the
industrial chemical industry are
members of labor unions. The
leading unions are the Interna­
tional Chemical Workers Union;
Oil, Chemical and Atomic Work­
ers International Union; and Dis­
trict 50, United Mine Workers of
America (Ind.).

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

Further information concern­
ing careers in the industrial
chemical field may be obtained
from the public relations depart­
ment of individual industrial
chemical manufacturing compa­
nies and from:
American Chemical Society, 1155
16th St. NW., Washington, D.C.
20036.
Manufacturing Chemists’ Associa­
tion, Inc., 1825 Connecticut Ave.
NW., Washington, D.C. 20009.




O C C U P A T IO N S IN T H E
IRO N A N D S T E E L IN D U S T R Y

Steel is the backbone of any
industrialized economy. There is
hardly a product in daily use that
has not been made from steel or
processed by machinery made of
steel. In 1968, United States
steelmakers produced approxi­
mately 130 million tons of steel—
about one-fourth of the world’s
output.
The iron and steel industry is
one of the Nation’s largest em­
ployers. About 630,000 wage and
salary workers were on the pay­
rolls of the industry’s more than
700 plants in 1968. Employees
work in a broad range of jobs
requiring a wide variety of skills
— from unskilled to technical and
professional jobs. Many of these
jobs are found only in iron and
steelmaking or finishing.
The iron and steel industry, as
discussed in this chapter, con­
sists of blast furnaces, steelmak­
ing furnaces, and rolling mills, in­
cluding mills engaged in finishing
and rolling steel products from
purchased sheets, strips, bars and
rods, and other materials. The
production of iron and steel con­
sists of a closely related series of
production processes. First, iron
ore is converted to molten iron
in blast furnaces. The molten iron
is poured into “ hot metal cans”
and either transported directly to
the steelmaking furnace or cast
into “ pigs” (iron in rough bar
form) for use by foundries or by
steel mills that do not produce
their own iron. See chart 31.)
Molten iron or pig iron is then
converted into steel in various
types of steelmaking furnaces, in­
cluding open hearth, basic oxy­
gen, and electric furnaces. The
steel then is rolled into basic
products, such as plates, sheets,
strips, rods, bars, rails, and struc­




tural shapes. Many plants carry
the manufacturing processes be­
yond the primary rolling stage
to produce finished products such
as tinplate, pipe, and wire prod­
ucts. (This chapter does not de­
scribe the mining of coal, iron
ore, limestone, and other raw ma­
terials used to make steel, or the
casting, stamping, forging, ma­
chining, or fabrication of steel.
These activities are not consid­
ered to be in the iron and steel
industry. Employment opportu­
nities in foundry, forging, and
machining occupations are dis­
cussed elsewhere in the Hand­

book.)
Steel companies differ in the
number of operations they per­
form. Many of them, known as
integrated companies, produce
their own coke from coal, reduce
ore to pig iron, make steel, and
form the steel into products by
rolling and other finishing meth­
ods. These companies account for
the bulk of total steel production
and employ most of the industry’s

workers. Another group of com­
panies make various types of
steel from steel scrap and pig iron
purchased from other companies.
A third group rolls and finishes
purchased raw steel. A fourth
type makes only pig iron to be
sold to small steel plants and
foundries.
Most of the basic products
made by steel mills are shipped
to the plants of other industries,
where they are made into thou­
sands of different products. Some
steel mill products, however,
such as rails, pipe, and nails, are
produced in their final form at
the mills. The leading steel con­
suming industries are automobile,
construction and building mate­
rials, machinery and machine
tools, containers, and household
appliances.
Steel sheets are made into au­
tomobile bodies, household appli­
ances, and metal furniture. Steel
bars are used to make parts for
automobiles and machinery and
to reinforce concrete in building
and highway construction. Steel
plates become parts of ships,
bridges, heavy machinery, rail­
road cars, and storage tanks.
Strip steel is used in the manu­
facture of items such as pots and

657

658

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

pans, automobile body parts,
razor blades, and toys. Tin coat­
ed steel, known as “ tinplate,” is
used primarily to make “ tin”
cans.
Individual plants in this indus­
try typically employ a large num­
ber of workers. About 70 percent
of all the industry’s employees
work in plants which have more
than 2,500 wage and salary
workers. A few plants have more
than 20,000 employees. However,
many plants employ fewer than
100 workers, particularly those
plants which make highly spe­
cialized steel products.
Iron and steel producing plants
are located mainly in the north­
ern and eastern parts of the
United States. There are large
plants located on the south
shore of Lake Michigan; at Cleve­
land and Youngstown, Ohio; Buf­
falo, N.Y.;
and
Pittsburgh,
Johnstown, Bethlehem, and Morrisville, Pa. The Nation’s largest
steel plant is located at Sparrows
Point near Baltimore, Md. Much
of the steelmaking in the South
is in the vicinity of Birmingham,
Ala., and Houston, Tex. Impor­
tant steelmaking facilities also
are located in the Far West.
About 7 out of 10 of the indus­
try’s workers are employed in five
States— Pennsylvania, Ohio, In­
diana, Illinois, and New York.
Nearly 3 out of 10 are in Pennsyl­
vania.

other equipment which move raw
materials and steel products
about the plants, or perform
other kinds of work. In addition,
many workers are needed to do
the clerical, sales, professional,
technical, administrative, and su­
pervisory work connected with
the operation of steelmaking
plants.
Four-fifths of all employees in
the iron and steel industry in
1968 were production and main­
tenance workers. These workers
were directly concerned with the
production and finishing of iron
and steel, the maintenance of
plant equipment, and movement
of materials within and among
plant departments. The remain­
ing employees were employed in
clerical, sales, professional, tech­
nical, administrative, research,
managerial, and s u p e r v i s o r y
occupations.
Men constitute 96 percent of
all employees in the iron and steel
industry, and an even higher pro­
portion of the industry’s produc­
tion workers since much of the
production work is strenuous.
However, the physical labor in­
volved in steelmaking has been
reduced through mechanization.
About two-thirds of all the wom­
en employed in the industry
work in clerical and other office
jobs, including research and other
technical work. Women employed
in production departments are in
jobs such as a s s o r t e r and
inspector.

O ccupations in the Industry

Processing Occupations. The ma­
jority of the workers in the iron
and steel industry are employed
in the many processing operations
involved in converting iron ore
into steel and then into semifin­
ished and finished steel products.
To provide a better understand­
ing of the types of jobs in this
industry, brief descriptions of the
major steelmaking and finishing
operations and of the more impor­

Workers in the iron and steel
industry hold more than 1,000
different types of jobs. Some
workers are directly engaged in
making iron and steel and con­
verting it into semifinished and
finished products. Others main­
tain the vast amount of machin­
ery and equipment used in the
industry, operate cranes and




tant occupations connected with
them are given below.
Blast furnaces. The blast fur­
nace is used to reduce iron ore to
molten iron. Calculated mixtures
or iron ore, coke, and limestone
are fed into the top of the fur­
nace. Hot air, blown in from the
bottom of the furnace, rises
through the mass of material and
causes combustion. The gases
formed by the burning of the coke
combine with and remove the
oxygen from the ore.
Molten iron trickles down
through the charge and collects in
a pool at the bottom of the fur­
nace. At the same time, the in­
tense heat calcines the limestone
which combines with silica and
other impurities in the iron ore
and coke and forms molten
“ slag,” a useful byproduct. This,
too, trickles down through the
charge and floats on top of the
heavier molten iron. The slag and
molten iron ore are separately
tapped or “ cast” from the blast
furnace.
A blast furnace operates con­
tinuously, 24 hours a day, 7 days
a week, unless it has to be shut
down for repairs or other reasons.
Molten iron is removed every 3 to
4 hours; slag is removed more
frequently. The charging of iron
ore, coke, and limestone into the
furnace is a continuous operation.
A single blast furnace may pro­
duce up to 4,500 tons of molten
iron in a 24-hour period. Output
can be increased to over 5,000
tons per day if pre-reduced iron
pellets are used.
The raw materials used in blast
furnaces are stored in a stock
house below furnace level. Here
stockhouse men or stockhouse
larrymen. (D.O.T. 919.883) load
traveling stock or larry cars with
raw materials from storage bins.
They weigh all raw materials ac­
cording to a prearranged sched­
ule, determined by the kind of hot
metal desired. The loaded stock

659

OCCUPATIONS IN THE IRON AND STEEL INDUSTRY

cars are emptied into waiting
“ skip cars,” which carry the ma­
terials up tracks to the top of the
blast furnace where they are au­
tomatically dumped. Other stockhouse men or skipmen (D.O.T.
921.883), stationed on the ground
below, control the skip cars
through electric and pneumatic
controls. Stove tenders (D.O.T.
512.782) and their assistants op­
erate huge, bricklined stoves
which heat air for the blast fur­
nace. They regulate valves to con­
trol the heating cycle of the stoves
and regulate the flow of heated
air to the furnace.
The men responsible for the
quantity and quality of iron pro­
duced are called blowers (D.O.T.
519.132). They direct the opera­
tion of one or more blast furnaces,
including loading and tapping the
furnace, and regulating the air
blast and furnace heat. Blowers
carefully check the metal pro­
duced, periodically sending sam­
ples of the molten iron and slag
to the laboratory where quality
tests are made and the results
reported to the blower. Keepers
(D.O.T. 502.884), under the di­
rection of the blower, are respon­
sible for tapping the furnace.
They direct their helpers and
cindermen or staggers (D.O.T.
519.887) in lining (with special
refractory sand) the troughs and
runners through which the mol­
ten iron and slag are run off into
waiting cars.
Steel furnaces. The second ma­
jor step in steelmaking is to con­
vert the iron into steel. This is
done in several types of furnaces:
Open hearth; basic oxygen; and
electric.
Open-hearth steel, which ac­
counts for slightly over half of all
steel produced in the United
States, is produced by adding
molten pig iron to previously
charged and heated steel scrap
and limestone and melting the
mixture in furnaces. It is possible




Blower takes sample of molten pig iron for quality tests.

to make from about 125 to more
than 600 tons of steel per load
or “ heat” , depending upon the
size of the furnace. Most of the
open-hearth steelmaking facilities
now use oxygen in the refining
operation to speed up the process.
A melter (D.O.T. 512.132) is
in charge of one open-hearth fur­
nace or more and is responsible
for the quality and quantity of
the steel produced. The melter
makes the steel to the desired
specifications by varying the pro­
portions of limestone, iron ore,
scrap steel, and molten pig iron
in the furnace, and by adding
small amounts of other materials
such as manganese, silicon, or
copper. He supervises three
grades of helpers—first (D.O.T.
512.782), second (D.O.T. 502.-

884), and third (D.O.T. 519.887).
These helpers prepare the fur­
naces for the heat, regulate fur­
nace temperatures, take samples
of molten steel for laboratory
tests, direct the adding of various
alloying materials, and tap the
molten steel from the furnace into
a ladle. One first helper is respon­
sible for each open-hearth furnace.
The charging machine operator
(D.O.T. 512.883) runs an elec­
trically controlled machine with
a long steel arm which picks up,
one by one, long steel boxes full
of limestone, scrap, and other ma­
terials. The machine pushes each
box through the open furnace
doors, turns it upside down to
discharge its contents, and then
withdraws it. The hot metal
craneman (D.O.T. 921.883) oper-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

660
ates a large overhead crane that
picks up ladles of molten iron and
pours the contents into the openhearth furnaces.
When the heat of steel is ready
to be tapped, the furnace crew
knocks out a plug at the back of
the furnace with a “ jet tapper”
(small explosive charge which is
fired into the plug) which allows
the molten metal to flow into a
ladle. The slag, which floats to
the top of the ladle, overflows
into a smaller ladle called a slag
pot.

The molten steel then is
teemed from the ladle into ingot
molds (hollow cast iron forms).
A ladle craneman (D.O.T. 921.883) operates an overhead crane
which picks up the ladle and
moves it over a long row of ingot
molds resting on flat-bottom cars.
The steel pourer (D.O.T. 514.884) operates a stopper on the
bottom of the ladle to let the steel
flow into the molds.
As soon as the steel in the
molds has solidified sufficiently,
an ingot stripper (D.O.T. 921.-

Molten metal is poured into basic oxygen furnace.




883), operates an overhead crane,
which removes the molds from the
still hot blocks of steel, called
ingots, and places them on “ ingot
buggies” (four-wheel carts run­
ning on rails) for movement to the
soaking pits.
Over one-third of all steel pro­
duced in 1968 was made in basicoxygen furnaces (B O F ), and the
proportion is expected to increase
rapidly in the years ahead. Basic
oxygen furnaces can make steel
faster than any other type of fur­
nace currently in use, and con­
tinual displacement of the openhearth steelmaking process by the
basic oxygen method is expected.
Some basic oxygen furnaces can
produce more than 6,000 tons of
steel in a 24-hour period. In this
steelmaking process, oxygen is
“ blown” into the furnace through
vertical pipes, or “ lances,” after it
has been loaded with steel scrap
and molten pig iron. Limestone
and other slag forming materials
are added to remove impurities
from the steel. The use of oxygen
speeds the steelmaking process
because it is blown directly onto
the molten metal forcing a faster
chemical reaction and a higher
bath temperature. BOF’s are
often computer controlled to in­
crease the quality of the steel pro­
duced and to speed up the steel­
making process.
Electric furnaces accounted for
about 12 percent of all steel pro­
duced in 1968. In electric fur­
naces, steelmaking can be con­
trolled very closely. Consequent­
ly, such furnaces are used to pro­
duce high quality and high alloy
steel, such as tool and stainless
steels, as well as the more com­
mon steels.
Rolling and finishing. The three
principal methods of shaping
metal in steel plants are rolling,
casting, and forging. About threefourths of all steel products are
shaped by the rolling process. In
this method, heated steel ingots

OCCUPATIONS IN THE IRON AND STEEL INDUSTRY

are squeezed longer and flatter be­
tween two cylinders or “ rolls.”
Before ingots of steel are rolled,
they are heated to the tempera­
ture specified by the plant’s met­
allurgist. The heating is done in
large furnaces called “ soaking
pits,” located in the plant floor.
A heater (D.O.T. 613.782) con­
trols the soaking pit operation.
He directs helpers in heating the
ingots to the specified temper­
ature and, with the help of control
equipment, determines when they
are ready for rolling. A soaking
pit craneman (D.O.T. 921.883)
operates an overhead crane, by
means of electrical controls, to lift
the stripped ingots from an ingot
car and place them into the soak­
ing pit. When the ingots are suf­
ficiently “ soaked” with heat, the
heater opens the furnace covers
and the craneman removes the
ingots and places them on an
ingot buggy, which carries them
to the rolling mill. Here, the in­
gots are rolled into semifinished
shapes— blooms, slabs, or billets.
Blooms are generally more than
6 inches wide and 6 inches thick.
Slabs are much wider than
blooms. Billets are the smallest of
these three shapes.
The rolling of blooms illustrates
the semifinishing process. In the
blooming mill, as in other rolling
mills, the ingot moves along on a
roller conveyor to a machine
which resembles a giant clothes
wringer. A “ two-high” blooming
mill has two heavy grooved rolls
which revolve in opposite direc­
tions. The rolls grip the approach­
ing ingot and pull it between
them, squeezing it thinner and
longer. When the ingot has made
a “ pass” through the rolls, the
rolls are revolved in the opposite
direction, and the ingot is fed
back through them. Throughout
the rolling operation, the ingot is
periodically turned 90 degrees by
mechanical devices called “ ma­
nipulators,” and passed between




the rolls again so that all sides are
rolled. Guides, located on each
side of the roll table, properly po­
sition the ingot for entry into the
rolls. This operation is repeated
until the ingot is reduced to a
bloom of the desired size. The
bloom then is ready to be cut to
specified lengths.
A blooming mill roller (D.O.T.
613.782), the man in charge of the
mill, works in a glass-enclosed
control booth, or “ pulpit,” located
above or beside the roller line.
His duties, which appear to con­
sist principally of moving levers
and pushing buttons, look rela­
tively simple. However, the qual­
ity of the product and the speed
with which the ingot is rolled de­
pend upon his skill. The roller
regulates the opening between the
rolls after each pass. Long experi­
ence and a knowledge of steel
characteristics are required for a
worker to become a roller. A ma­
nipulator operator (D.O.T. 613.-

Mill operator controls cold reducing
process.

661
782) sits in the pulpit beside the
roller and coordinates his con­
trols over the ingots direction
with those of the roller.
Upon leaving the rolling mill,
the red-hot bloom moves along a
roller conveyor to a place where
a shearman (D.O.T. 615.782)
controls a heavy, hydraulically
operated shear which cuts the
steel into desired lengths.
In a blooming mill with auto­
matic (electronic) process con­
trols, a rolling mill attendant is
given a card which has been
punched with a series of holes.
The holes represent coded infor­
mation and directions as to how
the ingot is to be rolled. The at­
tendant inserts the card into a
card “ reader,” then presses a but­
ton that starts the rolling se­
quence. The information in
punched-card form governs the
setting of the roll opening, the
speed of the rolls, the number of
passes to be made, and the num­
ber of times the ingot must be
turned. When the automatic proc­
ess is used, the roller’s function is
shifted from operating the rolling
controls to directing and coordi­
nating the entire rolling process.
This consists of heating, rolling,
and shearing.
Of increasing use in steel shap­
ing is the continuous casting
process. In this process, which
eliminates the necessity of con­
ventional pouring pits to produce
large ingots that in turn must be
put through huge blooming and
slabbing mills, molten steel is
poured into a water-cooled mold
of the desired product shape lo­
cated at the top of a tower. As
the mold is filled, the steel solidi­
fies along the bottom and lower
sides. The mold bottom is then
withdrawn and the slab or billet
starts its descent through the
tower. As the ribbon emerges
from the mold, additional molten
steel is continuously added at the
top. Continuing downward, it

662

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

passes through a spray chamber
where it is further cooled by a
water spray to solidify the still
liquid core. Pinch rolls control its
descent and support its weight.
Finally, the slab or billet is cut
into lengths as it emerges from
the rolls. In some continuous cast­
ing installations, a curved mold is
used so that the product comes
out horizontally rather than ver­
tically.
After the steel is rolled into
semifinished s h a p e — blooms,
slabs, or billets— most of it is put
through “ finishing” operations.
For example, steel slabs may be
reduced and shaped into plates
and sheets. Even after additional
rolling, some steels must be
worked further. Some rods, for
instance, are reduced to wire by
drawing. Wire can be further
processed into wire rope, nails,
fencing, or other end products.
Much sheet steel is reduced fur­
ther by cold-rolling, and then it
may be run through galvanizing
or tinplating lines.

product. In making welded pipe,
the flat steel is fed into a machine
which through a series of forming
rolls converts it into tube shape;
then the edges of the pipe are
fused by continuous welding.
Seamless pipe and tubing are
formed from a solid billet of steel,
called a tube round. In the seam­
less operation, the piercer-ma­
chine operator (D.O.T. 613.885)
passes a preheated tube round be­
tween two barrel-shaped rolls.
The revolving rolls spin the tube
round and force one end against
a piercing plug or “ mandrel.” The
combined rolling action and the
pressure of the rolls tend to make
the steel draw apart providing
space for the mandrel to enter.
The mandrel smooths the inside
walls and makes the diameter of
the hole uniform.
Tinplate is another important
steel product. To make tinplate,
thin gauge steel in coil form is fed
continuously through an elec­
trolytic bath where a coat of tin
is deposited on the steel.

Equipment operator, inspector,

Maintenance,
Transportation,
and Plant Service Occupations.

and assorter are among the major
occupations in finishing opera­
tions; women frequently are em­
ployed in these jobs.
An important occupation in
wire making is the wire drawer
(D.O.T. 614.782). This worker
pulls the pointed end of a steel
rod through a die (a block of hard
steel or sintered carbide with a
tapered hole in it). The rod end
then is attached to a reel which,
while revolving, pulls the rest of
the rod through the die. As the
rod passes through the die it is
made thinner and longer and be­
comes wire, which is coiled auto­
matically around the revolving
reel. If extensive reduction of the
rod is required, it is passed
through a series of dies, each die
reducing the diameter of the wire
slightly.
Pipe, both welded and seamless,
is also an important steel mill




Large numbers of workers are re­
quired in steel plants to support
processing activities. Some main­
tain and repair machinery and
equipment, and others operate the
equipment which provides power,
steam, and water. Other groups of
workers move material and sup­
plies and perform a variety of
service operations.
In the machine shops, machin­
ists and machine tool operators
make and repair metal parts for
machinery or equipment. Diemakers use machine tools to form
dies, such as those used in wire
drawing units. Roll turners
(D.O.T. 613.780) use lathes,
grinders, and other machine tools
to finish steel rolls to desired
shapes and sizes for use in the
rolling mills.
Millwrights in this industry
maintain mechanical equipment.

They overhaul machinery and re­
pair and replace defective parts.
Electricians install electric wiring
and fixtures and “ hook up” elec­
trically operated equipment. Elec­
trical repairmen (motor inspec­
tors)
keep
wiring,
motors,
switches, and electrical equip­
ment in good operating condition
and make repairs when electrical
equipment breaks down.
Electronic repairmen install, re­
pair, and adjust the increasing
number of electronic devices and
systems used in steel manufac­
turing plants. Typically, this
equipment includes communica­
tion systems such as public ad­
dress systems; closed-circuit tele­
vision installations; electronic
computing and data recording
systems; and measuring, process­
ing, and control devices such as
X-ray measuring or inspection
equipment.
Bricklayers repair and rebuild
the brickwork in furnaces, soak­
ing pits, and coke ovens, as well
as mill buildings and offices. Pipe­
fitters lay out, install, and repair
piping that is used to carry the
large amount of water, gas, steam,
oil, air, oxygen, and acetylene
used in the steelmaking process.
Boilermakers test, repair, and re­
build heating units, storage tanks,
stationary boilers, and conden­
sers. Locomotive engineers and
other train crew members operate
diesel or electric trains used to
transport materials and products
in the vast yards of iron and steel
plants. Welders operate welding
equipment to join metal parts in
repairing and rebuilding plant
machinery and in fabricating steel
products. Skilled workers run the
various boilers, turbines, and
switchboards in the powerplants
which provide the large amounts
of electric power needed in steel­
making.
Other types of maintenance
and service workers found in steel
plants include carpenters, oilers,

OCCUPATIONS IN THE IRON AND STEEL INDUSTRY

painters, instrument repairmen,
scale mechanic, loaders, riggers,
greasers, janitors, and guards.
Many laborers are employed to
load and unload materials and do
a variety of cleanup operations.

Administrative, Clerical, and
Technical Occupations. Profes­
sional, technical, administrative,
clerical, and sales workers ac­
counted for one-fifth of the in­
dustry’s total employment in
1968. Of these, the majority were
clerical workers, such as secre­
taries, stenographers, typists, ac­
counting clerks, and general of­
fice clerks.
Engineers, scientists, and tech­
nicians made up a substantial
proportion of the industry’s
“ white-collar” employment. Sev­
eral thousand of these workers
were engaged in research and de­
velopment to improve existing
iron and steel products and proc­
esses, and to develop new prod­
ucts and processes.
The technical specialists in iron
and steel plants also include me­
chanical engineers, whose prin­
cipal work is the design, construc­
tion, and operation of mill ma­
chinery and material handling
equipment. Many mechanical en­
gineers work in operating units
where their jobs include, for ex­
ample, determination of roll size
and contour, rolling pressures,
and operating speeds. Others are
responsible for plant and equip­
ment maintenance. Metallurgists
and metallurgical engineers work
in laboratories and production de­
partments where they have the
important task of testing and con­
trolling the quality of the steel
during its manufacture. They also
develop and improve the indus­
try’s products and processes
through research. Civil engineers
are engaged in the layout, con­
struction, and maintenance of
steel plants, and the equipment
used for heat, light, and transpor­
tation. Electrical engineers de­




sign, lay out, and supervise the
operation of electrical generating
distribution facilities that provide
the power essential in modem
steel mill operation. These engi­
neers also are concerned with the
operation of electrical machinery
and electrical and electronic con­
trol equipment.
Chemists work in the labora­
tories, making chemical analyses
of steel and raw materials used in
steel manufacture. Laboratory
technicians do routine testing and
assist chemists and engineers.
Draftsmen prepare working plans
and detailed drawings required in
p l a n t c o n s t r u c t i o n and
maintenance.
Among the employees in ad­
ministrative, managerial, and su­
pervisory occupations were office
managers, labor relations and
personnel managers, purchasing
agents, plant managers, and in­
dustrial engineers. Working with
these personnel were several
thousand professional workers,
other than scientists and engi­
neers. By far, the largest group
of these professional employees
were accountants, but there were
also many nurses, lawyers, eco­
nomists, statisticians, and mathe­
maticians. In addition, the indus­
try employed several thousand
workers in sales positions.
(Detailed discussions of profes­
sional, technical, mechanical, and
other occupations found in the
iron and steel industry, as well as
in many other industries, are
given elsewhere in the Hand­

book.)
Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
New workers in processing op­
erations usually are hired at the
unskilled level as laborers. Open­
ings in higher rated jobs usually
are filled by promoting workers
from lower grade jobs. Factors

663
considered when selecting work­
ers for promotion are ability to
do the job, physical fitness, and
length of service with the com­
pany.
Training for processing occupa­
tions is done almost entirely on
the job. Workers move to opera­
tions
requiring
progressively
greater skill as they acquire ex­
perience. A craneman, for exam­
ple, first is taught how to operate
relatively simple cranes, and
then he advances through several
steps to cranes much more diffi­
cult to run, such as the hot-metal
crane.
In selecting workers for proc­
essing jobs, steel companies gen­
erally give preference to high
school graduates. T o help them
advance in their work, many
workers take part-time courses
in subjects such as chemistry,
physics, and metallurgy. In some
cases, this training is provided by
the steel companies and may be
given within the plant. Other
workers take evening courses in
high schools, trade schools, or
universities in their communities
or enroll in correspondence
courses.
Workers in the various operat­
ing units usually advance along
fairly well-defined lines of pro­
motion within their department.
Examples of possible lines of ad­
vancement in the various operat­
ing units are described in the
next paragraph.
T o become a blast furnace
blower, a worker generally starts
as a laborer, advancing to cinderman or slagger, keeper’s helper,
keeper, blower’s helper, and fin­
ally, to blower. In the openhearth department, a man may
begin by doing general cleanup
work around the furnace and
then advance to third helper, sec­
ond helper, first helper, and
eventually, to melter. A possible
line of job advancement for a
roller in a finishing mill might be

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

664
pitman, roll hand, manipulator,
rougher, and finish roller. Work­
ers can be trained for skilled jobs,
such as blower, melter, and roller
(which are among the highest
rated steelmaking jobs), in a
minimum of 4 or 5 years, but
usually they have to wait a much
longer time before openings occur.
Most companies conduct some
type of apprenticeship program to
meet the needs of their mainte­
nance shops. There are appren­
tice training programs for more
than 20 different crafts in the
steel industry. The apprentice­
ship programs for maintenance
workers usually are of 3 or 4
years’ duration and consist main­
ly of shop training in various
aspects of the particular jobs. In
addition, classroom instruction in
related technical subjects usually
is given, either in the plant or in
local vocational schools.
Steelmaking companies have
different qualifications for ap­
prentice applicants. Generally,
employers require applicants to
be high school or vocational
school graduates. In most cases,
the minimum age is 18 years;
sometimes an upper age limit is
specified. Some companies give
aptitude and other types of tests
to applicants to determine their
suitability for the trades. Appren­
tices generally are chosen from
among qualified young workers
already employed in the plant.
The following occupations are
among those most often included
in apprentice training programs
in iron and steel plants: Black­
smith, boilermaker, bricklayer,
coremaker, carpenter, electrician,
instrument repairman, lead burn­
er, m achinist, molder, pattern­
maker, pipefitter, rigger, roll
turner, sheet-metal worker, tool
and die maker, and welder.
Applicants for jobs as helpers
to skilled maintenance workers
usually are given aptitude tests.
Helpers receive on-the-job train­




ing and may be promoted to jobs
requiring greater skill as open­
ings occur. However, vacancies in
these higher grades may not oc­
cur for several years, depending
on the rate of turnover.
The minimum requirement for
engineering and scientific jobs is
usually a bachelor’s degree with
an appropriate major. Practically
all the larger companies have for­
mal training programs for col­
lege-trained technical workers
in which the trainees work for
brief periods in various operating
and maintenance divisions to get
a broad picture of steelmaking
operations before they are as­
signed to a particular depart­
ment. In other companies, the
newly hired scientist or engineer
is assigned directly to a specific
research, operating, maintenance,
administrative, or sales unit. En­
gineering graduates frequently
are hired for sales work, and
many of the executives in the
industry have engineering back­
grounds. Engineering graduates,
as well as graduates of business
administration and liberal arts
colleges, are employed in jobs in
sales, accounting, and labor-man­
agement relations, as well as in
managerial positions.
Completion of a business
course in high school, junior col­
lege, or business school usually is
preferred for entry into most of
the office occupations. Office
jobs requiring special knowledge
of the steel industry generally are
filled by promoting personnel al­
ready employed in the industry.

Em ploym ent O utlook
A moderate increase in the
production of iron and steel is ex­
pected during the decade ahead.
The growing population and ris­
ing levels of personal disposable
income will result in greater de­

mand for products that require
large amounts of steel such as
automobiles, houses, household
appliances, and highways. New
machinery also will be needed to
produce the growing quantity of
goods needed to feed, clothe, and
otherwise satisfy the require­
ments of an expanding popula­
tion.
Because of the expected in­
crease in output per worker, and
the fact that in recent years im­
ports of steel have absorbed much
of the growth of the market for
steel, total employment in the in­
dustry is expected to decrease
slowly below the 1968 level of
approximately 630,000. Never­
theless, the iron and steel in­
dustry will hire many thousands
of workers through the 1970’s.
Retirements and deaths alone in
this large industry should pro­
vide about 13,000 job openings
annually.
Despite the expected decline
in overall employment, employ­
ment in some occupations, or oc­
cupational groups, still is ex­
pected to rise. Among white-col­
lar workers, for example, employ­
ment of engineers, chemists, phy­
sicists, mathematicians, labora­
tory aids, and other technical
personnel will increase, because
of the industry’s expanding re­
search and development pro­
grams. Job opportunities for
electronic technicians, electronic
computer programers, and other
personnel trained in the prepara­
tion of data for use in these ma­
chines also are expected to in­
crease. Among skilled plant per­
sonnel,
maintenance
workers
(particularly
instrument and
electronic repairmen) are ex­
pected to be needed in greater
numbers, because of the increas­
ingly complex machinery, instru­
ments, and other equipment used.
In contrast, the number of less
skilled processing jobs is ex­
pected to decline.

665

OCCUPATIONS IN THE IRON AND STEEL INDUSTRY
Average Straight-time Hourly Earnings1 of Workers
In Selected Occupations in Basic Iron and
Steel Establishments, September 1967____
Median
hourly earnings

____

Blast furnaces:
Larrymen .............................................. .....................
Stock unloaders ..................................... .....................
Open hearth furnaces:
Charging machine operators ............... .....................
First helpers .......................................... .....................
Basic oxygen furnaces:
Steel pourers.......................................... .....................
Furnace operators ................................ .....................
Bloom, slab, and billet mills:
Soaking pit cranemen........................... .....................
Manipulators ........................................ .....................
Continuous hot-strip mills:
Assorters ............................................... .....................
Coders ................................................... .....................
Maintenance:
Bricklayers ............................................ .....................
Millwrights ............................................ .....................

Middle
range

$3.69
$3.10

$3.39-$3.84
$2.93-$3.21

$4.60
$5.61

$4.25-$4.86
$5.08-$5.94

$4.85
$5.02

$4.12-$5.26
$4.61-$5.74

$4.38
$4.48

$4.03-$4.73
$4.15-$4.77

$2.89
$4.15

$2.75-$2.90
$3.80-$4.57

$4.10
$3.83

$3.57-$4.39
$3.50-$4.08

E xcludes premium pay for overtime and for work on weekends, holidays, and late shifts.
Incentive payments, such as those resulting from piecework or production bonus systems and
cost-of-living allowances, are included.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Earnings of production workers
in iron and steelmaking establish­
ments are among the highest in
manufacturing. In 1968, their
earnings averaged $154.16 a
week or $3.76 an hour. This com­
pares with average earnings of
$122.51 weekly, or $3.01 an hour,
for all production workers in
manufacturing establishments.
Agreements between most steel
companies and the United Steel­
workers of America include pro­
visions for various fringe benefits
such as vacation pay, shift dif­
ferentials, paid holidays, retire­
ment pensions, and supplemental
unemployment benefits. Most
workers receive vacation pay
ranging from 1 to 4 weeks, de­
pending on length of service. In
addition, the top 50 percent of
the workers, ranked on the basis
of seniority, receive 13-week va­
cations (including regular vaca­




tion time) every 5 years; and the
remaining 50 percent receive 3
extra weeks vacation once in a 5year period. Professional and
executive personnel in a few com­
panies receive similar benefits.
Workers may retire on full pen­
sion after 30 years of service, re­
gardless of age. Retiring workers
are eligible for a company-paid
pension, in addition to social se­
curity benefits for which they
may be eligible. Employees hav­
ing 2 years or more of service are
eligible to receive supplemental
unemployment benefits for up to
52 weeks. Other important provi­
sions include accident and sick­
ness, hospitalization, surgical, and
life insurance benefits financed
by the companies.
The American Iron and Steel
Institute estimates wage supple­
ments in 1967 as 28.4 percent of
total employment costs or $1.35
per hour worked.

Working conditions depend
upon the particular plant depart­
ment in which the worker is
employed. Maintenance shops
generally are clean and cool. Roll­
ing mills, however, generally are
hot and noisy. Some plants are
developing methods to reduce job
discomfort. For example, the use
of remote control enables em­
ployees to work outside the im­
mediate vicinity of processing op­
erations. In other instances, the
cabs in which the men work,
while operating mechanical equip­
ment are air conditioned. Some
of the workers near blast and steel
furnaces are exposed to consider­
able heat. Because certain proc­
esses are operated continuously,
some workers are on night shifts
or work on weekends.
The iron and steel industry is a
leader in the development of safe­
ty programs for workers, empha­
sizing the use of protective
clothing and devices on machines
to prevent accidents. In recent
years, steel plants had an aver­
age injury frequency rate (injur­
ies per million hours of work)
that was about one-third the rate
of all manufacturing.
Most plant workers in the iron
and steel industry are members
of the United Steelworkers of
America.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
American Iron and Steel Institute,
150 East 42nd St., New York,
N.Y. 10017.
United Steelworkers of America,
1500 Commonwealth Building,
Pittsburgh, Pa. 15222.

i




M O T O R V E H I C L E A N D E Q U IP M E N T
M A N U F A C T U R IN G O C C U P A T IO N S
Few products have had as great
an impact on everyday life as the
automobiles, trucks, buses, and
other vehicles manufactured by
the motor vehicle and equipment
industry (automobile industry).
In 1968, 4 out of 5 families owned
at least one automobile, and 1
family out of 4 owned two or
more. Altogether, 100 million pas­
senger cars, trucks, and buses
traveled the Nation’s streets and
highways. In addition, the wide­
spread use of motor vehicles has
made significant contributions to
the Nation’s economy by helping
to create new industries and de­
velop existing ones. Many busi­
nesses, including automotive re­
pair shops, gasoline service sta­
tions, and truck and bus trans­
portation facilities have been cre­
ated as a result of the motor ve­
hicle. Moreover, the automobile
industry is a major consumer of
many basic commodities such as
steel, rubber, and plate glass.
To manufacture the nearly 10.8
million motor vehicles (mainly
automobiles) produced in 1968,
the motor vehicle industry (SIC
371) employed approximately
868,000 employees. (In addition,
thousands of people, whose em­
ployment is not included in this
chapter, are employed outside
motor vehicle plants in the pro­
duction of components for the
motor vehicle industry. These are
persons engaged in the produc­
tion of tires and tubes, automobile
glass, vehicular lighting systems,
storage batteries, and many other
items.) Like other large indus­
tries, the automobile industry
offers employment to men and
women having widely different
backgrounds of education and
training. Job requirements vary
from the college degree necessary
for engineers and other profes­
sional and technical personnel to




the few hours of on-the-job train­
ing necessary for assemblers,
material handlers, and custodial
employees. The largest number
of employees work in factory
(plant) occupations. Plant occu­
pations range from the skilled
tool and die maker, millwright,
and electrician, to those requiring
little skill such as machine tender,
assembler, material handler, and
custodial worker. A great number
of automotive employees also
work in office and administrative
jobs as clerks, business machine
operators, stenographers, pur­
chasing agents, and personnel
assistants.
Worker places weatherstrip around
windshield.

N ature and Location of the
Industry
This industry’s ability to pro­
duce millions of complex motor
vehicles is due mainly to mass
production of standardized parts
and assembly-line manufacturing
methods. Thousands of identical
parts are produced by employees
whose jobs are divided into a lim­
ited number of operations on
high-speed machinery. T h e s e
mass-produced parts then are put
together by other employees to
form the completed vehicle. As a
result, new cars can be driven
off assembly lines at the rate of
more than one a minute.
The motor vehicle industry in
1967 consisted of approximately
2,700 plants that manufactured
parts or assembled these parts
into cars, trucks, buses, and spe­
cial-purpose vehicles such as am­
bulances, fire engines, and taxi­
cabs. The plants ranged in size
from huge assembly plants em­
ploying thousands of workers to
parts plants employing a small
number. About 85 percent of the

industry’s workers are employed
in establishments with 500 em­
ployees or more.
In 1968, about 14 percent of
the employees in the industry
were engaged in the manufacture
of bodies for passenger cars,
trucks, and buses, and in the pro­
duction of truck trailers and truck
trailer chassis. The remaining 86
percent were almost equally di­
vided between plants that supply
parts for new motor vehicles, and
plants that assemble components
into the final product.
Hundreds of firms supply parts
for new vehicles and also produce
replacement parts necessary to
keep the millions of vehicles al­
ready on the road in operation.
These firms often specialize in
producing individual parts— for
instance, brakes, axles, and trans­
missions. Relatively few compan­
ies assemble complete vehicles.
Seven out of eight workers in
the motor vehicle industry are
employed in 10 States. Michigan
alone accounts for more than 40
percent of the industry’s employ­
ment; Ohio, Indiana, and New
667

668
York account for another 25 per­
cent. The six other leading
States are California, Missouri,
Wisconsin, Illinois, Pennsylvania,
and New Jersey.
The center of the industry is
the Detroit metropolitan area
where 1 out of 4 motor vehicle
workers is employed. Several
other cities in the Great Lakes
region employing large numbers
of motor vehicle workers are
Flint, Lansing, and Saginaw,
Michigan; Cleveland, Lorain, T o­
ledo, and Cincinnati, Ohio; In­
dianapolis and Fort Wayne, Ind.;
Chicago, 111.; Buffalo, N. Y.; and
Milwaukee and Kenosha, Wis.
Much of the motor vehicle
manufacturing o n t h e E a s t
Coast is centered in the New
York-Northeastern New JerseyPhiladelphia industrial area in lo­
calities such as Newark, Paterson,
Linden, and New Brunswick,
N.J.; and New York, N.Y.
Leading automobile manufac­
turing centers in the Pacific
Coast region are Los Angeles and
San Francisco, California.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

prints, from which skilled modelmakers make clay, wood, and
plaster models. From these mod­
els, refinements in styling and de­
sign of the new car are developed.
In order to mass-produce the car,
master dies based on the finally
accepted model are made.
In recent years, computers
have played an increasingly im­
portant role in engineering and
have been linked with numer­
ically controlled drafting ma­
chines. These machines, auto­
matically operated by a tape con­
taining instructions prepared on
a computer, produce engineering
drawings. Another recent tech­
nique is the use of photographic

equipment to record points on a
clay model which the computer
then converts into full scale draw­
ings. These methods have enabled
the manufacturers to shorten the
lead time required to prepare new
models for production.

Production of Motor Vehicle
Parts. After the design and engi­
neering phases have been com­
pleted, thousands of component
parts that later will later be as­
sembled into a complete motor
vehicle must be produced. A
large variety of materials are
used, the most common being
steel, aluminum, copper, zinc,
plastic, rubber, fabric, glass, iron,
and lead.

How M otor Vehicles Are M ade
Automobiles and other motor
vehicles are produced in three
steps; preliminary designing and
engineering, production of motor
vehicle parts and subassemblies,
and final assembly of parts into
complete vehicles.

Preliminary Designing and En­
gineering. Approximately 2 to 3
years of designing, planning, and
testing often precede the actual
production of each year’s model.
Stylists constantly strive to im­
prove the appearance of the au­
tomobile. They work closely with
engineers and other technical per­
sonnel concerned with improving
mechanical operation, design, and
safety. The stylists’ creative de­
signs are transferred to blue­




Operator monitors machine that checks accuracy of cylinder bores.

669

MOTOR VEHICLE AND EQUIPMENT

The large number of metal
parts are shaped by several dif­
ferent methods, depending on the
purpose and size of the part and
the metal being used. The casting
process is used to produce bulky
parts such as engine blocks. Parte
which must withstand great
stress, such as axles and wheel
spindles, are produced by the
forging process. Huge presses
form the sheet metal and alum­
inum that compose the exterior
body. Metal parte requiring pre­
cise dimensions, such as pistons
and engine blocks, undergo fur­
ther machine processing. These
various processes are explained
more fully under plant occupa­
tions.
The production of parte does
not entirely consist of metalwork­
ing operations. Many parts are
painted; seat cushions are pre­
pared; engines are test run; and
parts are stored or shipped to
other plants. Throughout the pro­
duction of parts, numerous in­
spections are made to insure that
the quality of assembled vehicles
will meet established standards.

line. Finally the headlights and
wheels are alined, and after the
finished vehicle is inspected, it
leaves the factory.
As the chassis moves along the
assembly line, “ banks” of parts
and subassemblies located in
aisles along the line are contin­
ually fed to assemblers according
to a careful system of scheduling
arranged by the production con­
trol departments. Behind the
movement of parts and subassem­
blies to the assembly line is the
work of materials control men
who, months before, coordinated
the delivery of parts from sup­
pliers with a planned production
schedule.
The sequence of models to be
built may be transmitted to the
various stations along the line by
either teletype or telautograph.
Information on color and special
equipment desired in each car is
obtained from orders placed by
automobile dealers. By this sched­
uling program, cars of different
colors and types follow each other
on the assembly line— for exam­
ple, a blue sedan may be followed
by a beige station wagon.

Assembling the Final Product.
The last stage of motor vehicle
manufacturing occurs on the final
assembly line. Final assembly is
the process of putting together in
sequence the individual parte and
subassemblies, after which the
completed vehicle is driven off
the line.
A conveyor carries the motor
vehicle forward while men at work
stations attach the necessary
parts and subassemblies in proper
sequence. Generally, large and
heavy subassemblies, such as the
engine and body, are lowered by
hoists into position on the chassis
as it is moved forward. Near the
end of the assembly line, acces­
sories, such as hubcaps and floor
mats, are added; gasoline is
pumped into the fuel tank; and
the new vehicle is driven off the




O ccupations in the Industry
The motor vehicle industry’s
868,000
employees
in
1968
worked in hundreds of occupa­
tions. Semiskilled plant workers,
such as assemblers, inspectors,
and material handlers, made up
about one-half of all employees.
An additional one-quarter were
employed as foremen, mechanics
and repairmen, machinists, tool
and die makers, and in other
skilled occupations. Clerical em­
ployees made up about one-tenth
of the total. The remaining
workers were employed in pro­
fessional, technical, sales, and
managerial occupations, and as
unskilled workers and guards.
More than 90 percent of the in-

Employees cut, sew, and fit upholstery.

dustry’s employees are men. Of
the women employed about half
are in production jobs in which
the work is not physically strenu­
ous, such as assembling, inspect­
ing, machine operating, and sew­
ing and stitching; the rest are in
clerical and other office jobs, in­
cluding research and technical
work.
The duties and training re­
quirements of some of the im­
portant occupations are described
briefly below. (Detailed discus­
sions of professional, technical,
mechanical, and other occupa­
tions found in the automobile in­
dustry, as well as in many other
industries, are given in the sec­
tions of the Handbook covering
individual occupations.)

Professional and Technical Occu­
pations. The modern automobile
is a product of the research, de­
sign, and development work of
thousands of engineers, chemists,
metallurgists, physicists, mathe-

670
maticians, draftsmen, and other
professional, scientific, and tech­
nical personnel employed by the
motor vehicle companies. About
26,000 scientists and engineers
were employed in the motor ve­
hicle industry in 1968. Engineers
make up the largest group of pro­
fessional and technical workers in
the industry. Motor vehicle com­
panies hire engineers specializing
in mechanical, electrical, indus­
trial, and other fields. The me­
chanical engineer seeks ways of
improving the engine, transmis­
sion, or other parts of the auto­
mobile through research and
development. The electrical engi­
neer designs electrical parts, such
as ignition systems, voltage regu­
lators, and generators. The indus­
trial engineer concentrates on the
layout of plant equipment, im­
proved processes, and production
scheduling. The industry also em­
ploys civil, chemical, and ceramic
engineers, and metallurgists.
About two-fifths of the scien­
tists and engineers are engaged
pricipally in research and develop­
ment. Others may supervise tech­
nical production jobs. For exam­
ple, metallurgists may supervise
the melting operations in the pre­
cision casting and forging depart­
ments, and chemists may head the
testing and analytical laboratory.
The industry also employs
thousands of technicians, such as
draftsmen, engineering aids, and
laboratory assistants, to assist
professional engineers and scien­
tists.

Administrative, Clerical, and Re­
lated Occupations. Various skills
are necessary to perform a great
variety of administrative func­
tions. Executives determine how
many vehicles to produce, what
styles to make, what prices to
charge, which parts the company
should produce or buy, and where
to locate plants. Other adminis­
trative personnel, such as person­




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

nel managers and purchasing ag­
ents, direct individual depart­
ments or special phases of opera­
tions. Among those assisting the
administrators are accountants,
lawyers, market analysts, econo­
mists, statisticians, and industrial
relations experts. Many supervise
specific groups of office or plant
employees.
The large staff of clerical work­
ers, many of whom are women, in
eludes secretaries, stenographers,
bookkeepers, clerk-typists, key
punch operators, and business ma­
chine operators.

Plant Occupations. More than
three-fourths of the employees in
the motor vehicle industry work
in production operations. Most
plant employees make parts and
assemble them into complete ve­
hicles. Other plant employees
service and maintain the vast
amount of machinery and equip­
ment needed for automobile man­
ufacturing.
Machining Occupations. Machin­
ing is the metalworking process
generally best adapted for the
production of parts to precise
sizes. It is a process of cutting or
chipping away excess metal from
a part or piece of metal by the
use of power-driven machine tools
such as lathes; boring, grinding,
and milling m a c h i n e s ; drill
presses; and gear cutters.
One of the largest metalwork­
ing occupations in the automobile
industry is the machine tool op­
erator. These workers operate
power-driven machines which
hold both the piece of metal to be
cut and an instrument, or “ tool,”
that cuts, shapes, drills, or grinds
the metal. The job titles of em­
ployees, such as engine lathe op­
erator, drill press operator, and
milling machine operator, depend
on what type of machine tools
they operate.
Among the most highly skilled

machining workers are tool and
die makers. Toolmakers make cut­
ting tools and the jigs, fixtures,
and other accessories that hold
the metal being machined. Diemakers construct the dies used in
stamping, pressing, forging, and
other metalforming operations.
Tool and die makers read blue­
prints, set up and operate ma­
chine tools, use precision-measur­
ing instruments, and make shop
computations.
The motor vehicle industry has
taken the lead in developing con­
tinuous automatic production for
many machining operations. This
approach to production depends
on a variety of instruments to di­
rect and control manufacturing
processes. As a step in the auto­
mation of machining processes,
automobile manufacturers have
linked automatic machine tools to
perform various operations. Less
labor is required because the parts
or pieces being machined are not
handled manually.
For example, in an automated
engine plant, a rough engine block
goes through hundreds of differ­
ent cutting, drilling, and grinding
operations using little direct man­
ual labor. The engine block is
moved into and out of work sta­
tions mechanically and is ma­
chined automatically by a battery
of machine tools. Much of the
inspection is automatic. The ma­
chine tools, conveyors, and in­
spection equipment often are con­
trolled by electronic, hydraulic, or
air control mechanisms. Workers
tend the automated lines by
watching control panels for inter­
ruptions of the machines’ normal
functioning.

Other Metalworking Occupations.
Large numbers of workers are
employed in other metalworking
occupations. These include punch
press operators who run powerdriven presses that vary in size
from small presses used for form-

MOTOR VEHICLE AND EQUIPMENT

ing brackets, clips, or other small
parts to massive presses which
form, trim, and pierce holes in
automobile doors, body panels,
and frames.
Automobile
plants
employ
thousands of welders to join metal
parts. Some manual electric-arc
welders and gas welders work in
production jobs in parts and body
manufacturing plants, and others
work in maintenance jobs repair­
ing and rebuilding machinery and
equipment. Machine (resistance)
welders are employed on assem­
bly lines to weld separate parts of
bodies and subassemblies.

Foundry Occupations. Castings
for automobile parts, such as en­
gine blocks, are produced by pour­
ing metal into molds where it
cools and hardens in the shape of
the molds. Patternmakers make
a wood or metal pattern in the
shape of the final casting desired.
Coremakers shape the bodies of
sand, or “ cores/’ which are placed
inside molds to form hollow spaces
needed in castings. Machine molders make the sand mold into
which the metal is poured.
Many other workers in the
foundries are in less skilled occu­
pations. Melters operate electric
furnaces and cupolas used to melt
metal for castings. The actual
pouring is done by metal pourers.
After the casting cools, shakeout
men remove it from the mold.
Other workers clean the castings
and remove excess metal.

Forging Occupations. Parts
which m u s t withstand great
stress, such as axles, are shaped
by forging hammers and presses
in the forge shop. Hammermen
operate drop hammers which
pound metal into various shapes
between closed dies. The ham­
mermen are assisted by heaters
who heat the metal stock in a
furnace to prepare it for forging
and then pass the stock to the




671

hammermen. Other forge shop
workers are engaged in cleaning,
finishing, heat treating, or in­
specting forgings.

Inspection Occupations (D.O.T.
806.281; 283; 381; 382; 387; 684
and 687). Automobiles can be
massproduced because parts and
subassemblies for the same make
of automobile are interchange­
able. These parts are made to
exact measurements and are sub­
ject to close quality control and
inspection. (The industry em­
ploys statisticians and engineers
in quality control departments
who use statistical techniques de­
signed to control the quantity of
the product.)

Inspectors check incoming raw
materials, examine parts during
the manufacturing stages, and
make quality and conformity
checks during the subassembly
and assembly operations. Microm­
eters, specially designed gages,
and other measuring and testing
instruments are used by inspec­
tors and testers in performing
their duties.

Assembling Occupations (D.O.T.
806.887). Assemblers, who make
up the largest occupational group
in the automobile industry, put
together small parts to form subassemblies or parts and subassem­
blies to form the complete motor
vehicle (line assemblies). Most

Painters spray truck.

672

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

assembly jobs are repetitive and
require little skill; however, they
do require coordination and may
be strenuous. Each employee is
assigned a job to be done when the
vehicle passes his work station.
For example, one employee may
start nuts on bolts and the next
worker may tighten the nuts.

Finishing Occupations. Many fin­
ishing operations must be per­
formed before a car is completed.
For example, metal surfaces must
be readied for finshing, the exter­
iors painted, the interiors covered,
the seats upholstered, and finally,
the finished product must under­
go a thorough inspection. Among
those employed in finishing de­
partments are metal finishers,
platers, sprayers, polishers, Sand­
ers, trim cutters, sewing machine
operators, and trimmers. Metal
finishers (D.O.T. 705.884) file
and polish rough surface areas of
metal parts in preparation for
painting. Platers (D.O.T. 500.885) put a thin coat of chrome on
bumpers and on other parts such
as grills, mirrors, and hubcaps.
Sprayers (D.O.T. 741.887) oper­
ate spray guns to apply paint or
other finishes to the metal parts.
Polishers (D.O.T. 705.884) rub
the finished surfaces by hand or
polish them with a portable mo­
tor-driven buffing wheel.
Cutters, sewing machine opera­
tors, and trimmers combine their
skills to provide comfortable and
attractive interiors. With hand
shears or an electric knife, the
cutter (D.O.T. 781.884) cuts fab­
ric or leather to the specific shape
according to a pattern. The sew­
ing machine operator (D.O.T.
787.782), using a power-driven
machine, sews together the up­
holstery s e c t i o n s . Trimmers
(D.O.T. 780.884) arrange and
fasten springs and padding or
foam rubber for the seats and
other upholstered areas, and in­
stall the covering material.




Employees lower front and subassembly into place.

Materials Handling, Custodial,
and Plant Protection Occupa­
tions. The production of motor
vehicles by the assembly-line
process requires an elaborate sys­
tem of materials movement to
supply the assembly lines and to
move finished products. Many
power truck operators deliver
parts or subassemblies to the as­
sembly line or move materials
between plants. Materials han­
dlers load and unload parts from
trucks or into and out of contain­

ers. Overhead crane operators use
machines to move raw steel stock,
heavy dies, and other materials
that cannot be lifted by hand.
Many employees are needed to
keep the production employees
supplied with tools, parts, and
materials, and to keep records of
materials. Factory clerks, such as
checkers, stock chasers, and stock
clerks, coordinate the delivery of
parts to the proper location on
the assembly line. They check, re­
ceive, and distribute materials

MOTOR VEHICLE AND EQUIPMENT

and keep records of incoming and
outgoing shipments.
The industry also employs
many workers in plant protection
and custodial work. These include
workers such as plant patrolmen,
gatemen, janitors, and porters.

Maintenance

Occupations. A
large staff is required to keep ma­
chines and equipment in good op­
erating condition and to make
changes in the layout of automo­
bile plants. Because breakdowns
in assembly lines and highly
mechanized machining lines are
costly, many skilled maintenance
employees service this compli­
cated production system. The
maintenance and repair of com­
plex electrical, electronic, and hy­
draulic equipment require welltrained electricians, electronic
technicians, and machinery re­
pairmen. Millwrights move, in­
stall, and maintain heavy ma­
chinery and mechanical equip­
ment. Plumbers and pipefitters
lay out, install, and repair piping,
valves, pumps, and compressors.
Other maintenance employees in­
clude carpenters, stationary engi­
neers, and sheet metal workers.
T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
The training requirements for
jobs in the motor vehicle industry
range from a few hours of on-thejob training to years of prepara­
tion. Many plant workers can
learn their jobs in a day or two.
On the other hand, engineering
and scientific jobs, as well as craft
jobs, are filled by people who have
spent many years in training for
their occupations.
The industry’s emphasis upon
new designs and mechanical im­
provements has made it an im­
portant employer of persons with
engineering and scientific back­
grounds. The minimum require­




ment for professional engineering
jobs is a bachelor of science or a
bachelor of engineering degree
from a recognized college. Ad­
vanced degrees often are required
for scientists, particularly those
engaged in research and develop­
ment. Newly hired engineers and
scientists often are offered spe­
cialized training courses. Many
of the industry’s top executives
have been selected from this pro­
fessional group.
The requirements for other
technical employees vary accord­
ing to their specialities. For ex­
ample, many engineering aids,
laboratory assistants, and drafts­
men are technical institute or
junior college graduates. Some au­
tomobile companies train their
technical employees at companyrun schools or subsidize students
at local junior colleges or techni­
cal institutes. These employees
also may take advanced training
and acquire engineering degrees.
Administrative positions usual­
ly are filled by men and women
who have college degrees in busi­
ness administration, marketing,
accounting, industrial relations,
or other specialized fields. Some
companies have advanced train­
ing programs for employees in
these specialties. Most of the top
administrative jobs are filled by
promotion
from within
the
organization.
Most motor vehicle firms hire
people who have had commercial
courses in high schools or busi­
ness schools for office jobs such
as clerk, bookkeeper, keypunch
operator, stenographer, and typ­
ist. These people usually have not
been trained specifically for jobs
in this industry.
Applicants for most plant jobs
must be physically able, depend­
able, and have aptitude for me­
chanical work. For semiskilled
jobs, the industry seeks employees
who can do routine work at a
steady and fast pace. Assembling

673
jobs can be learned in a few hours
or days. Some of the less skilled
machine operating jobs can be
learned in a few weeks.
Extensive periods of training
are required for craft jobs in the
motor vehicle industry. Tool and
die makers, patternmakers, elec­
tricians, millwrights, and machin­
ery repairmen are some of the
highly skilled workers who gen­
erally require at least 4 years of
training before they can perform
their specialized jobs. Although
many craft workers acquire the
skills of their trade by working
for many years with experienced
workers, most training authori­
ties agree that apprenticeship is
the best way to learn a skilled
trade. Automobile firms, in coperation with labor unions, con­
duct apprenticeship programs for
many of the skilled trades.
Applicants for apprenticeship
training generally are required to
be graduates of a high school,
trade, or vocational school. Train­
ing authorities stress that young
people interested in apprentice­
ship training should prepare
themselves by taking courses in
mathematics and other sciences.
Apprentice applicants are given
physical examinations, mechani­
cal aptitude tests, and other
qualifying tests.
Apprenticeship training in­
cludes both on-the-job and class­
room instruction. Mathematics,
blue print reading, shop theory,
and specialized subjects are stud­
ied in the classroom, and the op­
eration and use of tools of a par­
ticular trade are learned in the
shop.
Motor vehicle companies se­
lect most foremen from among
workers already employed. Fre­
quently, persons who have com­
pleted apprentice training in a
company are selected for super­
visory jobs after they have ac­
quired further experience. Appli­
cants for foreman jobs, if select-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

674

Assembly line employee mounts wheels and tires with impact wrench.

ed, go through a training period
when promoted to the foreman
level.

Em ploym ent O utlook
The motor vehicle industry is
expected to provide thousands of
job openings annually through
the 1970’s, mainly to replace ex­
perienced workers who transfer
to other industries, retire, or die.
Retirements and deaths alone
should provide about 15,000 job
openings annually. On the other
hand, because of laborsaving
technological advances, employ­
ment in the industry is expected
to show little change from the
1968 level of 868,000, despite an­
ticipated large increases in the




production of motor vehicles and
parts.
Production of motor vehicles
and parts, and therefore employ­
ment, have fluctuated sharply
since the end of World War II,
reflecting the industry’s sensitivi­
ty to changes in general busi­
ness conditions, consumer prefer­
ence, availability of credit, and
defense production needs. In the
future, assuming relatively full
employment and the high rates
of economic growth necessary to
achieve this goal, the demand for
motor vehicles and equipment is
expected to increase substantially.
Other factors that will stimulate
demand include a large increase in
the driving age population and
number of households, growth of
multicar ownership, higher in­
comes, a continuing shift of fami­

lies from cities to the suburbs,
and the need to replace vehicles
that wear out.
As noted earlier, employment
is not expected to keep pace with
demand because of technological
innovations that increase output
per man hour. In the decade
ahead, the industry’s continued
emphasis upon highly technical
production methods, such as elec­
trical discharge, electrochemical,
and numerically controlled ma­
chining, is expected to continue
to increase output per worker.
The emphasis on research and
development of new materials is
also likely to continue. Recent ex­
amples of innovations resulting
from research and development
include the use of metal powders
to manufacture certain precision
parts that reduce the amount of
machining formerly required, and
the substitution of plastics for
many metal parts. New and mod­
ernized plants also are expected
to lead to further efficiencies in
production. However, some of the
increased production efficiency
will be offset by the greater num­
ber of man-hours required to pro­
duce an increasing variety of
models and to provide additional
equipment, such as improved
safety devices, air conditioners,
power brakes, and exhaust con­
trol devices.
The occupational distribution
of employment in the motor ve­
hicle industry has been changing
as a result of the industry’s em­
phasis upon research and devel­
opment, and its increasing use of
automatic manufacturing opera­
tions. Following recent occupa­
tional trends, the number of en­
gineers, scientists, and other pro­
fessional and technical personnel
is expected to increase because of
the anticipated expansion in re­
search and development activi­
ties. Moreover, this emphasis up­
on research and development will
create more job opportunities

MOTOR VEHICLE AND EQUIPMENT

for engineers and scientists hav­
ing advanced degrees. The indus­
try is expected to expand its use
of
electronic
data-processing
equipment in the future, and sys­
tems analysts and programers will
be employed in greater numbers.
Employment of clerical and ad­
ministrative workers is expected
to remain at about the present
level. Although the introduction
of data-processing equipment may
reduce the number employed in
some clerical occupations, a slight
increase in the number of stenoggraphers and typists is antici­
pated.
The employment of skilled
workers, as a group, may decline
very slightly. Although some
skilled occupations, including
millwright, pipefitter, and ma­
chinery repairman, are expected
to increase, others, including ma­
chinist and upholsterer, are ex­
pected to decline. The number of
semiskilled workers is expected
to remain relatively stable.

Earnings and W orking Conditions

The earnings of production
workers in this industry are
among the highest in manufac­
turing. In 1968, production work­
ers in the motor vehicle industry
earned, on the average, $167.66
for 43.1 hours a week, or $3.89 an
hour. This compares with average
earnings of $122.51 for a 40.7
hour week, or $3.01 an hour, for
production workers in all manu­
facturing industries.
In addition to wages and sala­
ries, employees in the industry
receive a wide range of benefits,
most of which are paid for en­
tirely by employers. These in­




clude life insurance; accidental
death and dismemberment bene­
fits; and hospitalization, surgical,
and medical benefits.
Most employees also receive
paid vacations (or payments in
lieu of vacations) ranging from 2
to 4 weeks, depending on length
of service; and an average of 10
paid holidays a year. Most com­
panies provide for automatic in­
creases in hourly wages when the
cost of living rises beyond a given
amount. Employees are paid at
one and one-half their normal
rate for working more than 40
hours a week or for working on
Saturdays. They receive double
the hourly rate for working on
Sundays or holidays.
Supplemental unemployment
benefit plans (paid for solely by
the employers) cover the majority
of workers. These plans also pro­
vide supplementary pay benefits
(short workweek benefits) to
help stabilize the income of hour­
ly rated employees and some sala­
ried employees when they are
required to work less than a nor­
mal week. In addition, during
layoff, provisions are included for
hospitalization,
surgical,
and
medical benefits; life and accident
insurance; survivor income bene­
fit coverage; separation payments
for those laid off 12 continuous
months or more; and relocation
allowances.
A great majority of the motor
vehicle workers are covered by
pension programs, almost all of
which are paid for entirely by the
employer. Retirement benefits
vary with length of service. In a
typical case, an employee, age 65,
and having 30 years’ service, who
retires in 1969, will receive a
monthly company pension of
$180, in addition to Federal so­
cial security benefits. Many pen­
sion programs also include pro­

675
visions for voluntary retirement
as early as age 55.
Usually within 40 days of their
hiring date, most hourly rated
workers and some salaried work­
ers in the industry are required
to join a specific union as a con­
dition of continued employment.
The great bulk of the production
and maintenance workers in as­
sembly plants, and a majority
employed in the parts plants be­
long to the International Union,
United Automobile, Aerospace
and Agricultural I m p l e m e n t
Workers of America. In some
parts plants, the International
Union, Allied Industrial Workers
of America is the bargaining
agent for the employees. Other
unions with membership in the
automobile industry include the
International Association of Ma­
chinists and Aerospace Workers;
the Pattern Makers’ League <
?f
North America; the International
Molders’ and Allied Workers’ Un­
ion of North America; the Metal
Polishers, Buffers, Platers and
Helpers International Union; the
International
Union,
United
Plant Guard Workers of America
(Ind.); the Mechanics Educa­
tional Society of America; the In­
ternational Brotherhood of Elec­
trical Workers; and the Interna­
tional Die Sinkers’ Conference
(Ind.)
Most motor vehicle workers are
employed in plants which are
relatively clean and free from
dust, smoke, and fumes. Some
work surroundings, however, par­
ticularly in the foundry and forge
departments, may be hot, and the
worker may be exposed to noise,
dust, and fumes. Working condi­
tions in foundries and forge de­
partments have been greatly im­
proved by the introduction of
larger, more efficient ventilation
systems.
Motor vehicle plants are, on
the whole, comparatively safe

676
places to work, although safety
conditions vary somewhat among
the individual departments or facilties. The rate of disabling in­
juries in motor vehicle plants has
been less than half that of all
manufacturing industries in re­
cent years. Some automobile
plants have fully equipped hospi­
tal facilties with doctors and
nurses in attendance.




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

Sources of A dditional In fo rm atio n
Further information on specific
employment opportunities in mo­
tor manufacturing can be ob­
tained from local offices of the
State employment service; per­
sonnel departments of individual
motor manufacturing firms; lo­
cals of the labor unions noted
above; and from:

International Union, United Auto­
mobile, Aerospace and Agricul­
tural Implement Workers of
America, 8000 East Jefferson
Ave., Detroit, Mich. 48214.

Automobile Manufacturers Asso­
ciation, Inc., 320 New Center
Building, Detroit, Mich. 48202.

O C C U P A T IO N S IN T H E P A P E R , A N D
A L L IE D P R O D U C T S IN D U S T R IE S

In 1968, the paper and allied
products industry employed al­
most 700,000 people to produce
thousands of paper products such
as newsprint, business forms,
facial tissue, building board, paper
bags, writing paper, and paperboard containers and boxes. Con­
sumption of paper and paperboard in 1968 averaged approxi­
mately 530 pounds for each per­
son in the Nation. The industry
employs workers in occupations
ranging from unskilled to highly
specialized technical and profes­
sional jobs, many found only in
the paper industry.
More than 150,000 women were
employed in this industry in 1968.
Many worked in plant jobs, main­
ly as machine operators and in­
spectors in paper finishing and
converting plants; others worked
in office jobs. Few women were
employed in the actual production
of pulp or paper.




N ature and Location of the
Industry
The paper industry is highly
mechanized. Pulp, paper, and
many finished paper products are
manufactured by machines—
some as long as a football field—
in a series of nearly automatic op­
erations that require very little
handling of material by workers.
Manufacturing plants in the pa­
per industry are engaged in one
or more of three different opera­
tions. The production of pulp (the
basic ingredient of paper) from
wood, reused fibers, or other raw
materials; the manufacture of pa­
per or paperboard (thick paper)
from pulp; or the conversion of
rolls of paper or paperboard into
finished products.
The largest group of employees
in the industry in 1968 worked in
mills that produced pulp, paper,
or paperboard. The next largest
group was employed in plants that
produced paperboard boxes and
containers; the remainder worked

in plants that produced a variety
of other paper products.
More than 80 percent of the
paper and allied products em­
ployees worked in factories em­
ploying 100 workers or more.
Workers in this industry are
located throughout the country,
although more than half are em­
ployed in eight States: New York,
Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Ohio,
Illinois,
Massachusetts,
Cali­
fornia, and New Jersey. Other
States having large numbers of
paperworkers are Michigan, Min­
nesota, Georgia, Washington,
Maine, Alabama, Florida, and
Louisiana.

Occupations in the Industry
Workers in the paper industry
are employed in a wide variety of
occupations, requiring a broad
range of training and skills. Many
workers operate and control spe­
cialized papermaking, finishing,
and converting machines. Some
workers install and repair equip­
ment such as papermaking ma­
chinery, converting equipment,
motors, pumps, pipes, and meas­
uring instruments. Truck and
tractor drivers make deliveries to
and from plants, and other work­
ers load and unload trucks, trains,
and ships. Guards, watchmen,
and janitors do custodial work.
Other workers keep inventory
records of stock and tools.
The industry employs many
workers in clerical, sales, and ad­
ministrative occupations. For ex­
ample, it employs purchasing ag­
ents, personnel managers, sales­
men, office clerks, stenographers,
bookkeepers, and business ma­
chine operators. Also, because of
the complex processes and equip­
ment used, the industry employs
many people in professional and
technical occupations such as
chemical and mechanical engi­
neers, chemists, laboratory tech­
nicians, and pulp and paper test­
ers. (Detailed discussions of pro677

678

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

cylinder known as a “ drum bark­
er.” Logs are fed mechanically
into this machine by a semiskilled
worker called a barker operator
(D.O.T. 533.782). The machine
cleans bark from the logs by
tumbling them against each other
and also against the rough inner
surface of the drum. Next, pulp
fibers in the logs are separated
from other substances not used
in papermaking. This is done by
a chemical or mechanical process,
or both, depending on the type of
wood used and the grade of paper
desired.
In the mechanical process, pulpwood is held against a fast-re­
volving grindstone that sepa­
rates the fibers. In the more com­
monly used chemical process,

pulpwood is carried on conveyor
belts to a chipper machine op­
erated by a chipperman (D.O.T.
668.885). The machine cuts the
pulpwood into chips about the
size of a quarter. These wood
chips are “ cooked” with chemicals
under high temperature and pres­
sure in a “ digester,” a kettlelike
vat several stories high. The di­
gester is operated by a skilled
worker called a digester operator
(D.O.T. 532.782) (also known as
a “ cook” ). He determines the
amount of chemicals to be used,
the c o o k i n g temperature and
pressure, and directs the loading
of the digester with wood chips
and chemicals. By checking an in­
strument panel, he makes certain
that proper conditions are being

Women are frequently employed as
carton inspectors.

fessional, technical, and mechani­
cal occupations, found not only
in the paper industry but in other
industries, are given elsewhere in
the Handbook in sections cover­
ing individual occupations. See
index for page numbers.)

Production

Jobs. More than
three-fourths of all employees in
the industry in 1968 worked in
production jobs. The simplified
description of papermaking occu­
pations and processes that follows
applies to a plant which combines
the production of pulp, paper, and
finished paper products into one
continuous operation. (See chart
32.)
After pulpwood logs are re­
ceived at the pulp mill, the bark
is removed. One machine used for
this operation is a large revolving




Barker operator controls machine that removes bark from logs.

OCCUPATIONS IN THE PAPER, AND ALLIED PRODUCTS INDUSTRIES

679

maintained. When the pulp fibers flow of pulp and the speed of the either for shipment or conversion
are removed from the digester, machine are coordinated. The pa­ into finished products. He con­
they are washed to remove chem­ per machine operator also deter­ trols the pressure and tempera­
icals, partially cooked chips, and mines whether the paper meets ture of the rolls that dry and fin­
other impurities. These fibers, required specifications by inter­ ish the paper and give it the cor­
called pulp, resemble wet, brown preting laboratory tests or, in rect thickness, inspects the paper
some instances, by visually check­ for imperfections, and makes sure
cotton.
T o turn pulp into paper, the ing or feeling the paper. He sup­ that it is being wound tightly and
pulp is mixed thoroughly with ervises the less skilled workers of uniformly into rolls. The backwater and further refined in a ma­ the machine crew and, with their tender also adjusts the machinery
chine operated by a skilled work­ help, keeps the paper moving that cuts the rolls into smaller
er called a beater engineer smoothly through the machine. rolls and, with the help of assist­
(D.O.T. 530.782). The kind and The paper machine operator and ants, may weigh and wrap the
amount of chemicals and dyes he his crew also may replace worn rolls for shipment.
Paper mills that produce a fine
uses and the length of time he felts and wire screens. The backtender (D.O.T. 532.885), who is grade of paper for books, maga­
“ beats” the solution determines
the color and strength of the supervised by the paper machine zines, or stationery usually main­
operator, controls the “ dry-end” tain finishing departments. Most
paper.
The pulp solution, now more of the papermaking machine, workers in these departments are
than 99 percent water, is turned where paper is dried and prepared either semiskilled or unskilled.
into paper or paperboard by ma-.
chines which are among the larg­
est in American industry. The ma­
chines are of two general types.
One is the Fourdrinier machine,
by far the most commonly used;
the other is the cylinder machine
used to make particular type of
paper such as building and con­
tainer board. In the Fourdrinier,
the pulp solution pours into a
continuously moving and vibrat­
ing belt of fine wire screen. As
the water drains, millions of pulp
fibers adhere to one another,
forming a thin wet sheet of paper.
After passing through presses that
squeeze out more water, the new­
ly formed paper passes through
the dryer section of the paper­
making machine to evaporate re­
maining water.
Papermaking machines are op­
erated by a paper machine opera­
tor (D.O.T. 539.782) (also called
a “ machine tender” ). The quality
of the paper produced largely de­
pends on the skill of this worker.
His principal responsibility is to
control the “ wet-end” of the pa­
permaking machine, where paper
of a specified thickness, width,
and physical strength is formed.
He checks control-panel instru­
ments to make certain that the
Paper machine operator and helper inspect and adjust flow of wet stock.




680

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

One semiskilled worker, the super­
calender operator (D.O.T. 534.782), aided by several helpers
and by mechanical handling
equipment, places huge rolls of
paper onto a machine that gives
the paper a smooth and glossy
finish. He also inspects the fin­
ished paper to make sure that
specifications have been met. An­
other semiskilled worker in the
finishing department, the paper
sorter and counter (D.O.T. 649.687), inspects sheets of paper for
tears, dirt spots, and wrinkles,
counts them, and may fill custom­
er orders.
In converting plants, machines
operated by semiskilled or skilled
workers convert paper and paperboard into p r o d u c t s such as
envelopes, napkins, corrugated
shipping containers, and folding
or rigid boxes. Occupations in
converting plants differ widely,
depending largely on the product
being manufactured. An example
of a semiskilled worker in an en­
velope-making plant is the enve­
lope machine operator (D.O.T.
641.885) who feeds and tends an
automatic machine that makes
envelopes from either rolls of pa­
per or prepared envelope blanks.
An example of a skilled worker in
a converting plant is the corrugator operator (D.O.T. 643.782)
who regulates the speed of the
machine that glues together
pieces of paperboard into corru­
gated paperboard (paperboard
with alternate ridges and grooves)
used for shipping containers. An­
other of the few skilled workers
in a converting plant is the printer-slotter operator (D.O.T. 651.782) who sets, adjusts, and op­
erates a machine that cuts and
creases corrugated or paperboard
sheets and prints designs or letter­
ing on them. He also positions the
printing plates and cutting de­
vices and turns keys to control
the distribution of printing ink,
pressure of rollers, and speed of




ment and examine paper machine
rolls, bearings, and pumps to in­
sure that they are in good work­
ing condition. They also take
apart and reassemble machines
and equipment when they are
moved about the plant.

Instrument repairmen install
and service electrical, electronic,
and mechanical instruments that
measure and control the flow of
pulp, paper, water, steam, and
chemical additives. The job of in­
strument repairman is becoming
increasingly important with the
greater use of automatic control
equipment in pulp and paper
manufacturing.

Backtender and assistant remove new
roll of paper from dry end of paper
machine.

the machine. Another skilled
worker is the die maker (D.O.T.
739.381) who makes cutting dies
used on machines that produce
folding cartons (the familiar col­
lapsible cartons used by clothing
stores to pack purchases).
Converting plants employ thou­
sands of workers to print text, de­
signs, and lettering on paper
products, such as cartons, bags,
labels, wallpaper, and envelopes.
Among these are skilled composi­
tors who set type, and pressmen
who prepare and operate printing
presses.

Maintenance Jobs. The paper in­
dustry employs many skilled
maintenance workers to care for
its complex machinery and elec­
trical equipment.
Millwrights maintain, install,
and repair machinery and equip­

Other important maintenance
employees include electricians,
who repair wiring, motors, control
panels, and switches; mainte­
nance machinists, who make re­
placement parts for mechanical
equipment; and pipefitters, who
lay out, install, and repair pipes.
Stationary engineers are em­
ployed to operate and maintain
powerplants, steam engines, boil­
ers, air compressors, motors, and
turbines.

Professional and Technical Occu­
pations. The complexity of pulp
and paper manufacturing requires
thousands of workers who have
engineering, chemical, or other
technical training and education.
More than 15,000 scientists and
engineers and 6,000 technicians
were employed by the paper in­
dustry in 1968.
Many chemists are employed to
control the quality of the product
by supervising the testing of pulp
and paper. In research laborator­
ies, chemists study the influence
of various chemicals on pulp and
paper properties. In addition,
some chemists and engineers are
employed as salesmen, supervisors
of plant workers, or as administra­
tors in positions requiring tech­
nical knowledge.

OCCUPATIONS IN THE PAPER, AND ALLIED PRODUCTS INDUSTRIES

Chemical and mechanical engi­
neers design, construct, operate,
control, and improve pulp and pap e r m a k i n g equipment. They
transform new pulp and paper­
making techniques, developed in
the laboratory, into practical pro­
duction methods. Some chemical
engineers are employed in plant
jobs to supervise the application
of pulp and paper technology to
the production process.
Electrical engineers are em­
ployed to supervise the design, de­
velopment, and operation of elec­
trical and electronic instruments
and power-generating and dis­
tributing equipment.
Packaging engineers (D.O.T.
019.187) design and supervise the
production of paper and paperboard containers and packages. A
few box manufacturers also em­
ploy artists who develop letter­
ings, designs, and colors for con­
tainers.
Professionally trained foresters
manage large areas of timberland
and assist in the wood-buying op­
erations of pulp and paper com­
panies. They map forest areas,
plan and supervise the harvesting
and cutting of trees, and seed or
plant new trees to assure continu­
ous production of timber.

or paper to determine whether
size, weight, strength, color, and
other properties of the material
meet specified standards. Some
testing is done by machine op­
erators, but in many mills, testing
technicians are employed. These
employees, who have job titles
such as laboratory technician, pa­

do highly skilled technical or
analytical
work.
Technicians
working in laboratories conduct
tests and record results on charts
or graphs for interpretation by
engineers and chemists.

per tester, pulp tester, paper in­
spector, and chemical analyst,

dustry employs many administra­
tive, clerical, and other office per­
sonnel. Executives, many of whom
are technically trained, plan and
administer company policy. To
work effectively, executives re­
quire information from a wide
variety of personnel, including ac­
countants, purchasing agents,
sales representatives, lawyers, and
personnel employed in activities

work in plant laboratories. They
use chemicals and laboratory test­
ing equipment when performing
tests. They also assist professional
engineers and chemists in re­
search and development activi­
ties. Depending on their training
and experience, technicians may
perform simple, routine tests or

Administrative, Clerical and Re­
lated Occupations. The paper in­

Systems analysts and computer
programers are becoming increas­
ingly important to this industry.
They analyze business and pro­
duction problems and convert
them to a form suitable for solu­
tion by automatic data-processing
equipment. Computers are used
to coordinate portions of the com­
plex papermaking process by col­
lecting and analyzing data on
chemical mixtures, pulp flows,
temperatures, pressures, and ma­
chine speeds. Computers also are
used to perform quality control
tests. Much accounting and man­
agement statistical data are proc­
essed by computers.
Frequent tests are performed
during the manufacture of pulp




681

Technician tests bursting strength of paper sample.

682
such as industrial relations, public
relations, transportation, adver­
tising, and market research. Cler­
ical employees, such as bookkeep­
ers, secretaries, and shipping
clerks, keep records of personnel,
payroll, inventories, sales, ship­
ments, and plant maintenance.

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Training for new workers in
the paper and allied products in­
dustry ranges from a few days to
years. Many operating jobs can
be learned in a few days of on-thejob training. On the other hand,
maintenance jobs, some machine
operating jobs, and, particularly,
engineering and scientific jobs re­
quire years of specialized training.
Paper and pump companies
generally hire inexperienced work­
ers for processing and mainte­
nance jobs and train them on the
job. Many companies prefer to
hire high school graduates be­
tween the ages of 18 and 25. Pro­
duction workers usually start as
laborers or helpers and advance
along fairly well-defined paths to
more skilled jobs. Maintenance
jobs generally are filled by men
trained in the plant. When no
qualified workers are available,
however, jobs are filled by hiring
experienced men from outside the
plant.
Most companies in this indus­
try do not have formal appren­
ticeship proprams to meet the
needs of their own maintenance
shops. In recent years, however,
some large plants that make
pulp, paper, and paperboard have
started formal apprenticeship pro­
grams that require 3 to 4 years
or more of training. Under these
programs, young men are trained
for skilled maintenance jobs such
as machinist, electrician, mill­
wright, and pipefitter. Generally,




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

an applicant is given a physical
examination, mechanical aptitude
tests, and similar qualifying tests.
Apprentice training includes both
on-the-job training and classroom
instruction related to the occupa­
tion. For example, the machinist
apprentice receives classroom in­
structions in mathematics, blue­
print reading, shop theory, and
specialized subjects. During shop
training, the apprentice learns the
use and care of the tools of his
trade.
A bachelor’s degree from a rec­
ognized college is usually the
minimum educational require­
ment for scientists, engineers, for­
esters, and other specialists. For
research work, persons with ad­
vanced degrees are preferred.
Many engineers and chemists
(called process engineers and pa­
per chemists) have specialized
training in paper technology. A
list of schools offering such train­
ing is available from the Ameri­
can Paper Institute, 260 Madison
Ave., New York, N.Y. 10016.
Many companies hire students
specializing in papermaking for
summer work, and upon gradua­
tion, frequently hire them on a
permanent basis. Some associa­
tions, colleges, universities, and
individual companies offer schol­
arships in pulp and papermaking
technology.
Some companies have formal
training programs for college
graduates having engineering or
scientific backgrounds. These em­
ployees may work for brief periods
in various plant operating divi­
sions to gain a broad knowledge
of pulp and paper manufacturing
before being assigned to a par­
ticular department. Other firms
immediately assign junior chem­
ists or engineers to a specific re­
search operation or maintenance
unit.
Generally, no specialized educa­
tion is required for laboratory as­
sistants, testing technicians, or

other kinds of technicians. Some
employers, however, prefer to hire
those who have had training in a
technical institute or junior col­
lege. Training usually is given on
the job. Laboratory assistants, for
example, begin in routine jobs and
advance to positions of greater re­
sponsibility after they have ac­
quired experience and demon­
strated ability to work with mini­
mum supervision.
Administrative positions are
filled frequently by men and
women who have college degrees
in business administration, mar­
keting, accounting, industrial re­
lations, or other specialized busi­
ness fields. A knowledge of paper
technology is helpful for adminis­
trative, sales, and related occu­
pations. This is true especially for
sales jobs, where customers often
require technical assistance. Most
pulp and paper companies employ
clerks, bookkeepers, stenogra­
phers, and typists who have had
commercial courses in high school
or in business school.
Factors affecting advancement
of plant workers include the
length of time a worker has held
a plant job, how well he performs
his job, and his physical condi­
tion. Promotion generally is lim­
ited to jobs within a “ work area,”
which may be a department, sec­
tion, or an operation on one type
of machine. To become a paper
machine tender, for example, the
worker may start as a laborer,
wrapping and sealing finished
rolls of paper as they come off the
papermaking machine. As he
gains experience and skill, he
moves to more difficult assign­
ments, finally becoming a ma­
chine tender in charge of operat­
ing a machine. These promotions
may take years, depending on the
availability of jobs. Experience
gained within a work area usually
is not transferable; unskilled or
semiskilled workers who transfer
to jobs outside their seniority

683

OCCUPATIONS IN THE PAPER, AND ALLIED PRODUCTS INDUSTRIES

area or to other plants usually
must start in entry jobs.
Many plant foremen and super­
visors are former production
workers. In some plants, quali­
fied workers may be promoted di­
rectly to foreman or other super­
visory positions. In others, work­
ers are given additional training
before they are eligible for pro­
motion to higher level jobs. This
training often is continued after
the worker is promoted— through
conferences, special plant training
sessions, and sometimes by tak­
ing courses at universities or trade
schools. Most firms provide some
financial assistance for employees
who take training courses outside
their plant.

Em ploym ent Outlook
Employment in the paper and
allied products industry is ex­
pected to increase moderately
through the 1970’s. In addition to
the thousands of jobs that will
arise from industry growth, thou­
sands of additional job opportuni­
ties will occur annually to replace
experienced workers who retire,
transfer to other fields of work,
or die. Deaths and retirements
alone are expected to provide
about
15,000
job
openings
annually.
Employment in this industry
is expected to continue to grow
fastest in the South and West.
Employment prospects, however,
will remain good in the Northeast
and North Central areas because
of the need to replace large num­
bers of experienced workers.
Production of paper is expected
to increase substantially during
the 1970’s to meet increased de­
mand resulting from population
growth, business expansion, and
new uses of paper. For example,
rising population will create a
greater demand for textbooks,
writing papers, periodicals, and




newspapers. Business expansion
will increase the need for paper
products, such as business forms
and packaging. The greater use
of paper products, such as dis­
posable garments, stretchable gro­
cery bags, carpet backing, and
refuse bags also is expected to
stimulate paper production. Em­
ployment will increase at a slower
rate than production, however,
because of the increasing use of
more efficient, labor-saving ma­
chinery and automatic control
equipment.
Occupational groups in the in­
dustry are expected to increase at
different rates. The numbers of
engineers, scientists, technicians,
and skilled workers, such as elec­
tricians, machinery repairmen, in­
strument repairmen, pipefitters,
and millwrights, are expected to
increase faster than other occupa­
tional groups in the industry.
Scientific and technical personnel
will be needed as research and
development activities increase,
and more skilled maintenance and
repair men will be required to ser­
vice the growing inventory of
complex machinery. The employ­
ment of administrative and cleri­
cal workers also is expected to
increase at a faster pace than
total employment. On the other
hand, employment of semiskilled
workers will grow more slowly,
while the number of helpers, la­
borers, and other unskilled plant
workers is expected to remain
about the same or decline slightly
as more automatic machinery is
introduced.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Production workers in the pa­
per and allied products industry
had average earnings of $3.05 an
hour, or $130.85 for a 42.9 hour
workweek in 1968. In the same
year, earnings of production work­
ers in all manufacturing indus­

tries averaged $3.01 an hour or
$122.51 for a 40.7 hour workweek.
Average straight-time hourly
earnings of production workers in
a number of occupations in pulp,
paper, and paperboard mills in
late 1967 are shown in the accom­
panying table. These rates are
based on the Nation as a whole,
whereas local wage rates may
differ, depending on geographic
location, type and size of mill, and
kinds of machines used.
Pulp plants

hourly
rates

Woodyard and wood preparation
occupations:
Crane operator...................... $3.48
Barker, drum ......................... 2.68
Chipperman ........................... 2.82
Pulpmaking occupations:
Digester operator (cook) ...... 3.62
Grinderman............................ 2.78
Screenman ............................. 3.13
Bleacherman.......................... 3.43
Pulp tester.............................. 2.86
Paper and paperboard, plants

Stock preparation occupations:
Head stock preparer
(beater engineer) .............
Beaterman ............................
Hydrapulper operator...........
Machine room occupations:
Paper machine tender...........
Backtender ............................
Third hand ............................
Fourth hand ..........................
Paper tester............................
Finishing occupations:
Supercalendar operator .......
Rewinder operator................
Rewinder helper....................
Cutters ...................................
Miscellaneous occupations:
Pipefitter ................................
Machinists..............................
Electrician..............................
Oiler .......................................
Truck, power ........................
Janitor ...................................

3.22
2.71
2.63
3.62
3.27
3.00
2.80
2.82
3.12
2.87
2.64
2.80
3.56
3.50
3.56
2.92
2.74
2.50

Most workers in pulp and paper
producing operations work in
plants that operate around the
clock— three shifts a day, 7 days
a week. Owing to the widespread
industry practice of rotating
shifts, production workers can ex­
pect to work on evening or night
shifts from time to time. Mainte-

684
nance workers, for the most part,
are employed on the regular day
shift. Many plants pay between
5 and 11 cents more an hour for
work on the evening shift and be­
tween 9 and 15 cents extra an
hour for the night shift. Most
workers have year-round employ­
ment because paper production is
not subject to seasonal variations.
A work schedule of 40 hours a
week is in effect in most mills. A
few plants have a standard work­
week of 36 hours or less.
Paid vacations almost always
are provided and generally are
based on length of service. In
most mills, workers receive 1 week
of vacation after 1 year of em­
ployment, 2 weeks after 3 to 5
years, and 3 weeks after 8 to 10
years. Many companies give 4
weeks’ vacation to employees who
have been wth them 20 years and
6 weeks after 30 years. Nearly all
workers receive 6 to 11 paid holi­
days annually.
Insurance or pension plans, fi­
nanced completely or partially by
employers, are in effect in most
plants. These plans generally in­
clude life, sickness, accident, hos­
pitalization, and surgical insur­
ance benefits for the employee
and, in some cases, his depend­
ents. Employee stock-purchase
and savings plans, to which the




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

company makes contributions, are
in effect in some firms.
Most pulp and papermaking
jobs do not require strenuous phy­
sical effort. Some employees, how­
ever, work in hot, humid, and
noisy areas. They also may be ex­
posed to disagreeable odors from
chemicals used in the papermak­
ing process. Pulp and paper com­
panies have made intensive efforts
in recent years to improve work­
ing conditions.
The rate of disabling injuries
in this industry in recent years
has been about the same as the
rate for all manufacturing. Pro­
tective clothing, warning signs in
danger areas, locking devices on
potentially dangerous equipment,
guards and rails around moving
machinery, and instruction in
safe practices have been impor­
tant in reducing the accident rate.
Some of the more hazardous jobs
are located in converting plants
where many cutting tools and
moving equipment are used.
A majority of production work­
ers in this industry are members
of trade unions. A large number
belong to the International Broth­
erhood of Pulp, Sulphite and Pa­
per Mill Workers, the United Papermakers and Paperworkers, or
the Association of Western Pulp
and Paper Workers. Many print­

ing workers in the industry belong
to the International Printing
Pressmen and Assistants’ Union
of North America. Some mainte­
nance workers and other crafts­
men belong to various craft
unions.

Sources of A d ditional In fo rm atio n

Further information about job
opportunities and working condi­
tions in the paper and allied prod­
ucts industry is available from
local offices of the State employ­
ment service and from:
American Forest Institute, 1835 K
St. NW., Washington, D.C.
20006.
American Paper Institute, 260
Madison Ave., New York, N.Y.
10016.
Fibre Box Association, 224 South
Michigan Ave., Chicago, 1 1
1.
60604.
International
Brotherhood
of
Pulp, Sulphite, and Paper Mill
Workers, Department of Re­
search and Education, Box No.
247, Port Edward, N.Y. 12828.
National Paper Box Manufactur­
ers Association, Inc., 121 North
Broad St., Philadelphia, Pa.
19107.

P E T R O L E U M R E F IN IN G

The petroleum industry pro­
vides about 75 percent of all the
energy fuels consumed in this
country. Products refined from
crude oil supply the fuels and
lubricants used for nearly all cars,
trucks, buses and trains; military
and civilian aircraft; and ships.
Oil and gas provide much of the
heat for homes, factories, and
commercial establishments, as
well as the fuel for over one-quar­
ter of the electric power generated
in this country. In addition, basic
petroleum compounds are essen­
tial in the manufacture of hun­
dreds of products in every day
use, such as synthetic rubber,
plastics, and fertilizer.
In 1968, about 150,000 workers,
who have a wide range of educa­
tional backgrounds and skills,
were employed in the various ac­
tivities that make up the petro­
leum refining industry. This chap­
ter deals with the jobs and activi­
ties involved in refining oil. The
Handbook discusses in a separate
chapter occupations concerned
with petroleum and natural gas
production and processing.

going through the pipes and
tanks. Manual handling of mate­
rials is virtually eliminated in the
modern refinery.
Briefly, the first step in petro­
leum refining consists of heating
crude oil as it flows through a
series of pipes in a furnace. The
vapors from the heated oil pass
into a tower where the various
“ fractions,” or parts, of crude oil

are condensed. The heaviest parts
(for example, asphalt) are drawn
off along the bottom of the tower
where temperatures are highest;
lighter parts (kerosene) are
drawn off along the middle of the
tower; and the lightest (gasoline
and gases) are taken off at the
top where temperatures are low­
est. Further processing, by more
complicated methods combines or
modifies compounds obtained
through fractionating.
About 260 refineries were in op­
eration in this country in 1968.
They ranged in size from small

N ature and Location of the
Industry
Petroleum refining changes
crude oil into gasoline, kerosene,
fuel oil, lubricants, and other
products for use in homes and in­
dustry. The modem refinery is a
complicated structure made up of
tanks and towers connected by a
maze of pipes. From the time
crude oil enters the refinery to
the shipment of finished products,
the flow of production is continu­
ous. The refining process is highly
automated and is controlled by
instruments which measure and
regulate the flow, temperature,
and pressure of liquids and gases




Operators regulate processing of crude oil from central controls.
685

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

686
plants which employed fewer
than 50 employees to plants which
employed several thousand em­
ployees. Although refineries are
located in most states, approxi­
mately 9 out of every 10 barrels
of crude oil were refined in only
10 states: Texas, California, Lou­
isiana, Illinois, Pennsylvania, In­
diana, Oklahoma, Ohio, Kansas,
and New Jersey. Refineries usual­
ly are located near oil fields, con­
suming centers, and deepwater
ports where tankers can dock.

Occupations in the Industry
About one out of every four
workers in refineries are opera­
tors. A key worker in converting
crude oil into usable products is
the Stillman (D.O.T. 542.280), or
chief operator. He is responsible
for the efficient operation of one
distillation unit or more. The op­
erator watches instrument read­
ings for any changes in tempera­
ture, pressure, and oil flow. In the
more modern refineries, the op­
erator can watch instruments on
graphic panels which show the
entire operation of all distillation
units in the refinery. He regulates
the instruments so that oil prod­
ucts will meet specifications.
From time to time, the operator
patrols all units for which he is
responsible to check their operat­
ing condition and to take sam­
ples for testing. He may have one
assistant or more (D.O.T. 542.782), depending on the number
and size of the units he directs.
Other plant workers whose jobs
are related to the processing of
crude oil i n c l u d e pumpmen
(D.O.T. 549.782) and their help­
ers (D.O.T. 549.884), who main­
tain and operate power-driven
pumps which circulate petroleum
products, chemicals, and water
through units during processing;
and treaters (D.O.T. 549.782),
who operate equipment to remove




impurities from gasoline, oil, and
other petroleum products.
In many refineries, a large per­
centage of the plant workers re­
pair, rebuild, and clean the high­
ly complicated refinery equip­
ment. In other plants, mainte­
nance work is contracted to com­
panies outside the petroleum in­
dustry. A large number of main­
tenance workers are needed be­
cause high heat and pressure and
corrosion quickly wear out equip­
ment. Included among these are
skilled boilermakers, carpenters,
electricians, instrument repair­
men, lead burners, machinists,
masons, painters, pipefitters, in­
sulators, riggers, sheetmetal work­
ers, and welders. Many helpers
and trainees are also in these
trades. Some skilled workers have
a primary skill in one craft as
well as the ability to handle the
duties of closely related crafts.
For example, a pipefitter also may
be able to do boilermaking and
welding repair work on a piece of
equipment. Maintenance workers
who have such combined jobs are
sometimes called refinery me­

chanics.
Plant workers who do not oper­
ate or maintain equipment do a
variety of other tasks in refiner­
ies. Some workers are employed
in the packaging and shipping de­
partment; some load and unload
materials on trucks, trains, or
ships; some drive trucks and trac­
tors to deliver materials to vari­
ous parts of the plant; and others
keep inventory records of stock
and tools. The industry also em­
ploys custodial workers such as
guards, watchmen, and janitors.
About 13 percent (slightly less
than 20,000), of the workers in
petroleum refining are scientists,
engineers, and technicians, com­
pared with about one-tenth in
petroleum production. Among
these professional and technical
refinery workers are chemists,
chemical engineers, mechanical

Research technician views special
purposes greases developed from
petroleum.

engineers, petroleum engineers,
l a b o r a t o r y technicians, and
draftsmen. Chemists and labora­
tory technicians control the qual­
ity of petroleum products by
making tests and analyses to de­
termine chemical and physical
properties. Some chemists are en­
gaged in research and develop­
ment activities to discover new
products and to improve those al­
ready produced. Laboratory tech­
nicians also assist chemists in re­
search projects or do routine test­
ing and sample taking. Some en­
gineers design chemical proc­
essing equipment and plant lay­
out and others supervise refining
processes. Draftsmen prepare de­
tailed plans and drawings needed
in refinery construction and main­
tenance.
Many administrative, clerical,
and other white-collar personnel

687

PETROLEUM REFINING

are employed by refining compan­
ies. A large number of top admin­
istrative and management posi­
tions are filled by technically
trained men, many of whom are
chemists or engineers. Sales engi­
neers also are technically trained.
Other specialized workers in the
field of administration include ac­
countants, purchasing agents,
lawyers, and personal training
specialists. Many typists, stenog­
raphers, secretaries, bookkeepers,
and business machine operators
are employed to assist these spe­
cialized workers. (Detailed dis­
cussions of professional, technical,
mechanical, and other occupa­
tions found not only in the petro­
leum refining industry but also in
other industries are given in the
section of this Handbook covering
the individual occupations. See
index for page numbers.)

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

Petroleum refineries typically
require new plant workers to
have a high school or vocational
school education. In large refin­
eries, aptitude and psychological
testing and interviewing are used
in selecting employees. Usually, a
new worker begins in a labor pool
where he does such jobs as moving
materials, packing cartons, or fill­
ing barrels. Depending on his par­
ticular aptitudes and seniority he
may be transferred to the proc­
essing department or mainte­
nance shop when a vacancy
occurs.
A worker newly assigned to a
processing department learns to
operate processing equipment un­
der the supervision of experienced
workers. As he gains experience
and know-how, he moves to the
more skilled jobs in his depart­
ment. For example, one line of




advancement for a processing
worker may be from helper to as­
sistant operator to chief operator.
Formal training courses frequent­
ly are provided to assure thorough
and current knowledge in a vari­
ety of operations.
An inexperienced worker who
is assigned to a maintenance shop
receives training on the job under
the supervision of the foreman. In
some refineries, he also may re­
ceive classroom instruction relat­
ed to his particular work. Over a
period of 3 or 4 years, he may ad­
vance from helper to skilled
craftsman in one of the mainte­
nance jobs. Some large refineries
have programs under which work­
ers are given training in several
related maintenance crafts. For
example, a qualified instrument
repairman may be given addition­
al training as electrician or
machinist.
For scientists and engineers a
bachelor’s degree in science or en­
gineering usually is the minimum
educational requirement. For re­
search jobs, scientists and engi­
neers with advanced degrees are
preferred. Laboratory assistants
begin their work in routine jobs
and advance to positions of great­
er responsibility as they acquire
additional experience and demon­
strate ability to work without
close supervision. Inexperienced
draftsmen begin as copyists or
tracers. With additional experi­
ence and training, they may ad­
vance to more skilled and respon­
sible drafting positions. Adminis­
trative positions generally are
filled by men and women who
have college degrees in business
administration, marketing, ac­
counting, industrial relations, or
other specialized fields. For posi­
tions as clerks, bookkeepers, ste­
nographers, and typists, most re­
fineries employ persons who have
had commercial courses in high
school or business school.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Only a few thousand job open­
ings each year are expected for
new workers in petroleum refin­
eries through the 1970’s. These
will result from the need to re­
place workers who retire, die, or
transfer to other industries. N ot
all job vacancies created by turn­
over may be filled, since it is ex­
pected that in the future total
employment in petroleum refin­
ing will continue the moderate de­
cline which began during the early
1950’s.
This decline is expected despite
the continued expansion of refin­
ery output and anticipated in­
creases in consumption of petro­
leum products in the years ahead.
The lower employment level is
expected to result from improved
methods of refining crude oil and
the trend toward fewer but larger
and more highly automated re­
fineries.
Most of the job opportunities
created by turnover in petroleum
refining will be for professional,
administrative, and technical
workers, particularly chemists,
chemical engineers, and techni­
cians, who are needed for the in­
dustry’s research and develop­
ment activities. Among plant
workers, most job opportunities
will be in maintenance occupa­
tions, such as those of instrument
repairman, pipefitter, machinist,
and maintenance electrician, be­
cause of the increasing use of au­
tomated equipment and complex
control instruments.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Refinery workers are among
the highest paid employees in
American industry. In 1968, pro­
duction workers in petroleum re­
fining averaged $166.27 a week,
or $3.94 an hour for a 42.2 hour
workweek. This salary compares

688
with an average for all manufac­
turing industries of $122.51 a
week, or $3.01 an hour. The high­
er average earnings of production
workers in refineries reflect the
relatively large proportion of
workers in skilled occupations.
Entry salaries for chemical en­
gineers in the petroleum refining
industry were among the highest
in American industry, according
to a survey conducted by the
American Chemical Society in
1968. The survey showed that in
this industry the average start­
ing salary for chemists who have
a bachelor’s degree and no ex­
perience was $700 a month and
for chemical engineers, $815 a
month.
Most petroleum refinery work­
ers receive a 2-week vacation with
pay after 1 year of service; 3
weeks, after 5 years; 4 weeks,
after 10 years; and 5 weeks after
20 years. Most refineries have




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

adopted some type of insurance,
pension, and medical and surgical
plans for their employees. Em­
ployee stock-purchase and sav­
ings plans, to which the employer
makes contributions, are in effect
in many firms.
Because petroleum refining is a
continuous round-the-clock opera­
tion, operators may be assigned
to one of the three shifts, or they
may be rotated on various shifts
and be subject to Sunday and hol­
iday work. Employees usually re­
ceive 15 to 30 cents an hour ad­
ditional pay when they work on
the second or third shift. Most
maintenance workers are on duty
during the day shift; only a few
work at night to handle emer­
gencies. Work in the industry has
little seasonal variation and reg­
ular workers have year-round
jobs.
Most refinery jobs require only
moderate physical effort. A few

workers, however, have to open
and close heavy valves and climb
stairs and ladders to considerable
heights in the course of their du­
ties. Others may work in hot
places or may be exposed to un­
pleasant odors. Refineries are rela­
tively safe places in which to
work. The injury-frequency rate
is about half that of manufactur­
ing as a whole.
A majority of refinery plant
workers are union members. A
large number of refineries have
been organized by the Oil, Chemi­
cal and Atomic Workers Interna­
tional Union. Some refinery
workers are members of other
AFL-CIO unions or of various lo­
cal unions not affiliated with the
AFL-CIO.
See petroleum and natural gas
production and processing chap­
ter for Sources of Additional In­
formation.

TRANSPORTATION, COMMUNICATION, AND
PUBLIC UTILITIES

The transportation, communi­
cation, and public utilities indus­
tries make possible the smooth
functioning of our society and
produce most of the energy that
powers, heats, and lights our fac­
tories and homes. The transporta­
tion industry moves goods and
people about the country by air,
rail, water and highway; the com­
munications industry provides
communication systems such as
telephones and radio and TV
broadcasting. Other public utili­
ties supply the Nation with elec­
tricity and gas, and with sanita­
tion services. Transportation,
communication, and public utility
firms are all semipublic in char­
acter. Some State and local gov­
ernments operate their own tran­
sit lines or electric companies as
well as other types of utilities.
Privately owned transportation
and public utility firms are regu­
lated closely by commissions or
other public authorities to make
sure they operate in the public
interest.
In 1968, 4.3 million persons
were employed in the transporta­
tion, communication, and public
utilities industry group. In addi­
tion, more than one-half million
persons were employed by State
and local governments in publicly
owned transit and utility systems.
Almost half of the workers in this
major industry group were em­
ployed in two industries— motor
freight (1.0 million workers)
which includes local-and long-dis­
tance trucking, and the communi­
cations industries (1.0 million
workers) which includes tele­
phone, telegraph, and radio and
TV broadcasting. Railroads em­
ployed over 660,000 workers in
1968; and about the same number
were employed by electric, gas,




and sanitary services companies.
Other industries with significant
employment included local and
interurban passenger transit and
air transportation. The remaind­
er of the workers were employed
by firms that provided water and
pipeline transportation and trans­
portation services.
Nearly one-fifth of the persons
employed in transportation, com­
munication, and public utilities
are women— a ratio somewhat
less than for the economy as a
whole. Employment of women
varies greatly among the indus­
tries that make up the major in­
dustry group. For example, they
make up only 9 percent of employ­
ment in local and interurban pas­
senger transit; however, in the
communications industry, where
many work as telephone opera­
tors, women account for over onehalf of the work force.
White-collar workers account
for about 2 of 5 workers in trans­
portation, communication, and
public utilities, mostly in com­
munications, and electric, gas,
and sanitary services. White collar
jobs in these industries reflect the
many clerical workers in the tele­
phone industry, technicians and
managers in radio and T V broad­
casting, and engineers and tech­
nicians employed throughout the
various transportation and public
utility industries. Clerical work­
ers make up 1 of 4 workers in the
major industry division; over onehalf are employed in the com­
munications industry. Profession­
al and technical workers account
for about 7 percent of the employ­
ment in the industry. Most of
these workers are concentrated
in the communications industry,
where, in addition to large num­
bers of engineers and technicians,

many actors, entertainers, and
writers are employed.
Craftsmen account for 1 of 5
workers, and operatives, 1 of 4.
Skilled craftsmen are needed to
install, maintain, and repair the
large amount of mechanical, elec­
trical, and other types of equip­
ment that are used throughout
this industry. Among the major
blue-collar occupations are air­
plane mechanic, motor vehicle me­
chanic, and telephone lineman;
other important skilled occupa­
tions are locomotive engineer and
fireman, stationary engineer, and
foreman. This major industry di­
vision is the chief employer of
workers in a number of semi­
skilled occupations such as bus
and truck driver, taxi driver,
brakeman and switchman, and
sailor and deckhand.
Estimated
employment,
1968
Major occupational group

distribution)

All occupational groups...........

100

Professional, technical, and
kindred workers ...........

7

Managers, officials, and
proprietors ....................

9

Clerical and kindred
workers ..........................

25

Sales workers....................

1

Craftsmen, foremen,and
kindred workers ...........

21

Operatives and kindred
workers ..........................

27

Service workers................

3

Laborers ............................

8

N ote.—D ue to rounding, sum of individual
items may not add to total.

Employment in transportation
and public utilities is expected to
increase slowly through the
1970’s. In addition to opportuni689

690
ties resulting from growth in em­
ployment, many thousands of job
openings are expected each year
because of the need to replace
workers who die or retire. Trans­
fer of employees to other indus­
tries will provide still additional
job opportunities. Replacement
needs will be particularly high in
clerical positions because many
women leave the work force each
year to take on family respon­
sibilities.
The rising levels of business
and consumer income in the years
ahead should increase significant­
ly the overall demand for services
in this sector and the need for
workers to provide them. Employ­
ment growth in the individual in­
dustries, however, will vary con­
siderably. Rising population, ur­
banization, and the growth of sub­
urban areas will continue to stim­
ulate employment in local truck­
ing. Although employment in
long-distance trucking will con­
tinue its long-term growth, com­
petition from rail and air trans­
portation may slow down the rate
of growth relative to the recent




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

past. The increasing popularity of
air transportation for both passen­
gers and cargo will continue into
the 1970’s as rising business ac­
tivity and more leisure time for
travel spur continued rapid
growth in this area. On the other
hand, not all of the transporta­
tion industries will experience
rapid employment growth. For
example, little e m p l o y m e n t
change is expected in local and
interurban passenger transporta­
tion (buses, taxis, and subways)
because consumers likely will con­
tinue to rely heavily on private
automobiles.
Employment in communica­
tions is expected to grow slowly
through the 1970’s. Although de­
mand for the services of the com­
munication industry will increase
rapidly, rapid advances in tech­
nology are expected to limit em­
ployment growth. Technological
changes are expected to be par­
ticularly significant in telephone
communications. The computer
and other electronic equipment
are expected to be applied in­

creasingly to functions that have
been performed by workers.
Employment in electric and gas
utilities also will be affected
strongly by advancing technology
and employment will grow slowly
despite rapid increase in output.
Substantial improvements in elec­
tric g e n e r a t i n g equipment
through the increasing use of nu­
clear power, the growing use of
electronic
controls,
improved
coal-handling techniques, and
more efficient techniques of con­
structing and maintaining trans­
mission lines will limit the growth
of employment in this important
tion industry. By 1968 about
industry.
The statements that follow cov­
er major occupations in the trans­
portation, communication, and
public utility fields. More detailed
information about occupations
that cut across many industries—
for example, stenographers and
typists, drivers, and others— ap­
pear elsewhere in the Handbook.
(See index in the back of the
book.)

C IV IL A V IA T IO N O C C U P A T IO N S

The rapid development of air
transportation in the past two
decades has increased greatly the
mobility of the population and
has created many thousands of
job opportunities in the civil avia­
tion industry. By 1968 about
500,000 persons were employed
in a variety of interesting and
responsible occupations in this
field.

N atu re and Location of Civil
Aviation Activities
Civil aviation services are pro­
vided by many different types of
organizations for a variety of
purposes. The scheduled airlines
(those which operate regularly
scheduled flights over prescribed
routes) provide transportation
for passengers, cargo, and mail.
Other airlines, called supplemen­
tal airlines, provide charter and
non-scheduled flight service for
passengers and cargo. A wide
range of other civil aviation activ­
ities are conducted in the field
of general aviation, including the
use of company-owned aircraft to
transport employees or cargo
(business flying); spraying insec­
ticides, fertilizers, or seed on
land, crops, or forest (aerial ap­
plication) ; charter service in
small aircraft, scheduled routes
to small airports, mail and light
cargo services (air-taxi opera­
tions); and inspection of pipe­
lines and powerlines for breaks
(industrial flying). 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 (certified repair
stations).
Civil aviation activities also in-




elude the regulatory and accident
investigation functions of the
Federal Aviation Administration
(F A A ), the Civil Aeronautics
Board (C A B ), and the National
Transportation
Safety Board
(N T S B )— all part of the Federal
Government. The FAA develops
air safety regulations, inspects
and tests aircraft and airline fa­
cilities, provides ground electron­
ic guidance equipment, and gives
tests for licenses to personnel
such as pilots, copilots, flight en­
gineers, dispatchers, and aircraft
mechanics. The CAB establishes
policy concerning matters such
as airline rates and routes. The
NTSB investigates all airlines ac­
cidents and aircraft accidents in­
volving fatalities.
The 40 scheduled airlines were
the largest employers of air trans­
portation workers in 1968, with
about 300,000 workers. Of these,
about 80 percent (240,000) were
employed to fly and service air­
craft and passengers on domestic
routes— between cities in the
United States. Nearly 54,000
other workers handled the oper­
ations of the scheduled airlines
which flew international routes.
The remaining workers were em­
ployed by airlines that handled
only cargo. More than half of all
scheduled
airline
employees
worked for the four largest do­
mestic airlines.
In addition to scheduled air­
line employees, several thousand
workers— all in ground occupa­
tions— were employed in the
United States by foreign airlines
that operate between overseas
points and the United States.
An additional 5,800 workers
were employed by 13 supple­
mental airlines. These workers
were in many of the same occu­
pations as scheduled airline
workers.

An estimated 25,000 pilots and
50.000 mechanics were employed
full-time in general aviation op­
erations in 1968. In addition to
full-time workers, 35,000 pilots
and a small number of mechanics
were employed on a part-time
basis.
The FAA employed about
45.000 people and the CAB about
650 in 1968. The largest group
of FAA employees 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 air­
lines, supervision of international
air transportation matters, pro­
motion of air safety, and investi­
gation of accidents.
Civil aviation workers are em­
ployed in every State, but an es­
timated half work in five States;
New York, California, Florida,
Illinois, and Texas. Some of the
reasons for the employment con­
centration in these States are
their large populations and geo­
graphic areas; their large num­
bers of airports and aircraft regi­
strations; and the existence of
major airline aircraft overhaul
bases.

Civil Aviation O ccupations
In addition to employing the
largest number of air transporta­
tion workers, the scheduled air­
lines employ workers in a variety
of occupations. Of the 300,000
employed by the scheduled air­
lines in 1968, about 4 out of 5
worked in ground occupations.
Mechanics and other aircraft
maintenance personnel was the
largest occupational category,
representing 18 percent of sched­
uled airline employment. About
14 percent of all scheduled airline
workers were traffic agents and
691

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

692
clerks, and only about 2 percent
worked at airline ground stations
as communications personnel and
dispatchers. The remaining work­
ers in ground occupational cate­
gories (about 47 percent) were
employed as cargo and freight
handlers, custodial and other air­
craft-servicing personnel, and of­
fice, administrative, and profes­
sional personnel.
Flight occupations accounted
for the other one-fifth of airline
employment. Stewardesses and
stewards represented the largest
flight occupation, including over
9 percent of all airline workers;
pilots and copilots constituted
another 8 percent; and flight en­
gineers accounted for the remain­
der (3 percent).
More than 50 percent of gen­
eral aviation workers were pilots
or copilots, and about 45 percent
were aircraft mechanics. The
great majority of the mechanics
were employed in certificated re­
pair stations. The remaining gen­
eral aviation workers were em­
ployed in clerical or administra­
tive jobs.
In the Federal Government,
the largest group of civil aviation
workers were in air traffic serv­
icing work. About 19,000 workers
were employed in this category.
Most of these workers— about
14,600— were air traffic control­
lers. Another group of about
4,500 workers were flight service
station specialists.
A detailed description of the
duties, training, qualifications,
employment outlook, earnings,
and working conditions for each
of the following air transporta­
tion jobs appear in the later sec­
tions of this chapter: (1) Pilots
and copilots, (2) flight engineers,
(3) stewardesses, (4) aircraft me­
chanics, (5) airline dispatchers,
(6) air traffic controllers, (7)
ground radio operators and tele­
typists, and (8) traffic agents
and clerks.




Em ploym ent O utlook
The total number of workers in
civil aviation occupations is ex­
pected to increase very rapidly
during the 1970’s, but the rates
of growth among the major civil
aviation divisions will differ.
General aviation employment
is expected to show a rapid rise,
mainly because the anticipated
greater demand for general avia­
tion services will lead to an in­
crease in the number of aircraft.
About 215,000 general aviation
aircraft may be flying by 1980—
an increase of about 100,000 over
the number in 1967. A significant
employment increase will occur
in business flying, which will re­
quire about 35,500 new em­
ployees, mainly well qualified pi­
lots. Even more new job openings
will occur in air-taxi operations,
largely because of the demand for
air transportation in cities not
serviced by the scheduled air­
lines. These jobs will be about
equally divided between qualified
pilots and copilots and aircraft
mechanics. An estimated 52,000
job openings— practically all for
aircraft mechanics— will occur in
certificated repair stations be­
cause of the need for additional
maintenance and repair services
by a larger general aviation fleet.
The number of operators who
give flight instruction and engage
in patrol and survey flying will
grow very rapidly by 1980, re­
quiring thousands of additional
pilots.
Use of aircraft for aerial ap­
plication, which includes the dis­
tribution of chemicals or seeds
in agriculture, fire fighting, and
the restocking of fish and other
wild life, will require a few thou­
sand additional employees, main­
ly pilots.
A slow increase is expected in
the employment of civil aviation
workers by the Federal Govern­
ment. Openings that occur will

be primarily those resulting from
retirements, deaths, and transfers
to other fields of work. Although
employment declines may occur
in some occupations, increasing
employment opportunities are ex­
pected for those who maintain
and repair the increasing array of
visual and electronic aids to air
traffic.
Airline employment growth will
result from anticipated increases
in passenger and cargo traffic.
By 1980, the scheduled airlines
will fly about three times the
number of revenue passenger
miles flown in 1963. An even
larger increase is expected in air
cargo traffic which, however, rep­
resents a relatively small percent
of total traffic. Among the factors
which will contribute to in­
creased air travel are a larger
population, increased consumer
purchasing power, the trend tow­
ard 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
economy-class passenger services.
As in the past, airline occupa­
tions will grow at different rates.
Occupations, such as stewardess
and cargo and baggage handler,
which provide services for pas­
sengers and cargo directly, will
grow very rapidly. However, em­
ployment in these occupations is
not expected to increase as fast
as the increases in air 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
comparable growth in employ­
ment of baggage and cargo han­
dlers. Economy flights, which of­
fer fewer in-flight services than
first-class flights, will permit air­
lines to fly greatly increased
numbers of passengers without a

CIVIL AVIATION OCCUPATIONS

corresponding rise in employment
of flight attendants.
The rapid growth in some air­
line occupations, particularly
those concerned with the opera­
tion and maintenance of aircraft,
will result from a substantial in­
crease in the number of aircraft
in service. Continuing replace­
ment of present equipment by
faster, larger capacity jet planes
and the eventual introduction of
supersonic aircraft will accomo­
date part of the increased traffic,
but a significant increase in the
total number of aircraft in service
also will be necessary. In addition
to the growth of the industry in
creating jobs, replacement needs
will remain high throughout the
1970’s because of retirements and
deaths.
Earnings and W orking Conditions
Earnings among various civil
aviation occupations vary greatly
because of factors such as skill
requirements, length of experi­
ence, and amount of responsibil­
ity for safe and efficient opera­
tions. Within particular occupa­
tions, earnings vary according to
the type of civil aviation activity.
The statements on individual oc­
cupations which follow contain
detailed discussions of earnings.
As a rule, airline employees
and their immediate families are
entitled to a limited amount of
free or reduced-fare transporta­
tion on their companies’ flights,
depending on the employees’
length of service. In addition,
they may fly at greatly reduced
rates with other airlines. Flight
personnel may be away from
their home bases about one-third
of the time or more. When they
are away from home, the airlines
provide either living accomoda­
tions or pay expenses.
Airlines operate flights at all
hours of the day and night. Per­
sonnel in some occupations,




693
therefore, often have irregular
work schedules. Maximum hours
of work per month for workers in
flight occupations have been es­
tablished by the FAA as a safe­
ty precaution against fatigue. In
addition, u n i o n - m a n a g e m e n t
agreements often stipulate pay­
ment for a minimum number of
hours each month to guarantee a
substantial proportion of normal
earnings.
Ground personnel who work as
dispatchers, mechanics, traffic
agents, communications opera­
tors, and in administrative jobs
usually work a 5-day, 40-hour
week. Their working hours, how­
ever, often include nights, week­
ends, or holidays. Air traffic con­
trollers work a 5-day, 40-hour
week; they are periodically as­
signed to night, weekend, and
holiday work. Ground personnel
generally receive extra pay for
overtime work or compensatory
time off.
In domestic operations, airline
employees usually receive 2 to 4
weeks’ vacation with pay, de­
pending upon length of service.
Most flight personnel in interna­
tional operations get a month’s
vacation. Employees also receive
paid sick leave, retirement bene­
fits, life insurance, and long-term
disability hospitalization bene­
fits. FAA and CAB employees
are entitled to the same benefits
as other Federal personnel, in­
cluding from 13 to 26 days of
annual leave and 13 days of sick
leave a year, as well as retire­
ment, life insurance, and health
benefits.
Many of the workers in air
transportation are union mem­
bers. These unions are identified
in the statements covering the in­
dividual occupations.

qualifications required may be
obtained by writing to the per­
sonnel manager of the company.
Addresses of individual compa­
nies are available from the Air
Transport Association of Ameri­
ca, 1000 Connecticut Ave. NW.,
Washington, D.C. 20036.
Inquiries regarding jobs with
the Federal Aviation Administra­
tion should be addressed to the
Personnel Officer, Federal Avia­
tion Administration, at any of
the following addresses:

Sources of A dditional Inform ation

N atu re of th e W ork

Information about job openings
in a particular airline, and the

The men who have the respon­
sibility for flying a multimillion

Eastern
Region.

Southwest
Region.
Southern
Region.
Central
Region.
Western
Region.

Alaskan
Region.
Pacific
Region.

Federal
Building,
John F. Kennedy
International Air­
port,
Jamaica,
Long Island, N.Y.
11430.
P.O. Box 1689, Fort
W orth, Tex. 76101.
P.O. Box 20636, At­
lanta, Ga. 30320.
601 E. 12th St.,
Kansas City, Mo.
64106.
5641 West Manches­
ter Ave., Box
90007,
Airport
Station, Los An­
geles, Calif. 90009.
632 Sixth Ave., An­
chorage, Alaska
99501.
P.O. Box
4009,
Honolulu, Hawaii
96812.

Information concerning FAAapproved schools offering train­
ing for work as an aircraft me­
chanic, pilot, or in other technical
fields related to aviation may be
obtained from the Information
Retrieval Branch, Federal Avia­
tion Administration Library, HQ630, Federal Aviation Adminis­
tration, Washington, D.C. 20553.

PILOTS AND COPILOTS
(D.O.T. 196.168, .228, .268, and .283)

694
dollar plane and transporting
safely as many as 200 passengers
or more are the pilot and copilot.
The pilot (called “ captain” by
the airlines) operates the con­
trols and performs other tasks
necessary for flying a plane, keep­
ing it on course, and landing it
safely. He supervises the copilot,
flight engineer, and flight attend­
ants. The copilot is second in
command. He assists the captain
in air-to-ground communications,
monitoring flight and engine in­
struments, and in operating the
controls of the plane.
Both captain and copilot must
do a great deal of planning before
their plane may take off. They
confer with the company mete­
orologist about weather condi­
tions and, in cooperation with
the airline dispatcher, they pre­
pare a flight plan along a route
and at altitudes which offer the




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

best weather and wind conditions
so that a safe, fast, and smooth
flight may be possible. This flight
plan must be approved by Fed­
eral
Aviation
Administration
(FAA) air traffic control person­
nel. The copilot plots the course
to be flown and computes the fly­
ing time between various points.
Prior to takeoff, both men check
the operation of each engine and
the functioning of the plane’s
many instruments, controls, and
electronic and mechanical sys­
tems.
During the flight, the captain
or copilot reports by radio to
ground control stations regarding
their altitude, air speed, weather
conditions, and other flight de­
tails. The captain also supervises
the navigation of the flight and
keeps close watch on the many
instruments which indicate the

plane’s fuel load and the condi­
tion of the engines, controls, elec­
tronic equipment, and landing
gear. The copilot assists in these
duties.
Before landing, the captain or
the copilot recheck the opera­
tion of the landing gear and re­
quest landing clearance from air
traffic control personnel. If visi­
bility is limited when a landing
approach is being made, the cap­
tain may have to rely primarily
on instruments such as the alti­
meter, air speed indicator, arti­
ficial horizon, and gyro compass
and instrument landing system.
Both men must complete a flight
report and file trip records in the
airline office when the flight is
ended.
Some pilots, employed by air­
lines as “ check pilots,” make at
least two flights a year with each
captain to observe his proficiency
and adherence to FAA flight
regulations and company policies.
Airlines employ some pilots to
fly planes leased to private cor­
porations. Airlines also employ
pilots as instructors to train both
new and experienced pilots in the
use of new equipment.
Although pilots employed in
general aviation usually fly
planes smaller than those used by
the scheduled airlines, their pre­
flight and flight duties are sim­
ilar to those of airline pilots.
These pilots seldom have the as­
sistance of flight crews. In addi­
tion to flying, they may perform
minor maintenance and repair
work 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 self-employed, such as
airtaxi operators, in addition to
flying and doing some mainte­
nance work, have duties similar
to those of other small business­
men.

695

CIVIL AVIATION OCCUPATIONS

Places of Em ploym ent
The scheduled airlines em­
ployed over 24,000 pilots and co­
pilots in 1968. In addition, ap­
proximately 1,600 pilots were
employed by the certificated sup­
plemental airlines (airlines that
provide charter and nonscheduled
service).
An estimated 25,000 pilots and
copilots were employed full-time
in general aviation in 1968. Sev­
eral thousand worked in business
flying and air-taxi operations.
About 1,500 pilots were employed
in aerial application flying. The
Federal Government employed
approximately 1 , 2 0 0 p i l o t s
(about half in the FAA) to per­
form a variety of services such
as examining applicants for pi­
lots’ licenses, inspecting naviga­
tion facilities along Federal air­
ways, testing planes that are
newly designed or have major
modifications, enforcing game
laws, fighting forest fires, and
patrolling national boundaries. In
addition, State and local gov­
ernments employed about 800 pi­
lots. Several thousand pilots were
employed by companies to in­
spect pipelines and installations
for oil companies, and to provide
other aerial services such as pri­
vate flight instruction, and flights
for sightseeing and aerial photog­
raphy. A small number worked
for aircraft manufacturers as test
pilots. In addition, an estimated
35,000 pilots were employed on
a part-time basis. These workers
were distributed among all the
various general aviation activities.

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
T o do any type of commercial
flying, pilots or copilots must be
licensed by the FAA. Airline cap­
tains must have an “ airline trans­
port pilot’s” license. Copilots, and




most pilots employed in general
aviation, must have a “ commer­
cial airplane pilot’s” license. In ad­
dition, pilots who are subject to
FAA instrument flight regula­
tions or who anticipate flying on
instruments when the weather is
bad, must have an “ instrument
rating.” Pilots and copilots also
must have a rating for the class
of plane they can fly (single-en­
gine, multi-engine, or seaplane),
and for the specific type of plane
they can fly, such as DC-6 or
Boeing 707.
T o qualify for a license as a
commercial pilot, applicants must
be at least 18 years old and have
at least 200 hours of flight ex­
perience. T o obtain an instru­
ment rating, applicants must
have at least 40 hours of instru­
ment time, 20 hours of which
must be in actual flight. Appli­
cants for an airline transport pi­
lot’s license must be at least 23
years old and have a total of
1,200 hours of flight time during
the previous 8 years, including
night flying and instrument fly­
ing time.
Before a person may receive
any license or rating, he must
pass a physical examination and
a written test given by the FAA
covering subjects such as prin­
ciples of safe flight operations,
Federal Aviation Regulations,
navigation principles, radio oper­
ation, and meterology. He also
must submit proof that he has
completed the minimum flight­
time requirements and, in a prac­
tical 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 ex­
perience necessary to become a
pilot through military service or
from a private flying school.
Graduation from flying schools
approved by the FAA satisfies
the flight experience require­
ments for licensing. Applicants
who have appropriate military
flight training and experience are
required to pass only the Federal
Aviation Regulations examina­
tion if they apply for a license
within a year after leaving the
service. Those trained in the
armed services have the added op­
portunity to gain experience and
accumulate flying time on large
aircraft similar to those used by
the airlines.
As a rule, applicants for a co­
pilot job with the airlines must
be between 20 and 35 years old,
although preference is given to ap­
plicants who are between ages 21
and 28. They must be 5 feet 6
inches to 6 feet 4 inches tall and
weigh between 140 and 210
pounds. All applicants must be
high school graduates; some air­
lines require 2 years of college
and prefer to hire college gradu­
ates. Physical requirements for
pilots, especially in scheduled air­
line employment, are very high.
They must have at least 20/100
vision corrected to 20/20, good
hearing
outstanding
physical
stamina, and no physical handi­
caps that would prevent quick
reactions. Since flying large air­
craft places great responsibilities
upon a pilot, the airlines use psy­
chological 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) usu­
ally start as flight engineers, al­
though they may begin as co-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

696
pilots. An applicant for a flight
crew member job with a sched­
uled airline often must have more
than the FAA minimum qualifi­
cations for commercial pilot li­
censing. For example, although
the FAA requires only 200 flying
hours to qualify for such a li­
cense, the airlines generally re­
quire from 500 to 1,000 flying
hours. Airlines also require a
“ restricted” radio-telephone op­
erator permit, issued by the Fed­
eral Communications Commis­
sion, which allows the holder to
operate the plane’s radio.
Pilots employed in business
flying are required to have a com­
mercial pilot’s license. In addi­
tion, some employers require
their pilots to have instrument
ratings, and some require pilot
applicants to have air transport
pilot ratings. Because of the
close relationship between pilots
and their passengers, employers
look for job applicants who have
pleasant personalities.
All newly hired airline copilots
go through company orientation
courses. In addition, some airlines
give beginning copilots or flight
engineers from 3 to 10 weeks of
training on company planes be­
fore assigning them to a sched­
uled flight. Trainees also receive
classroom instruction in subjects
such as flight theory, radio oper­
ation, meteorology, Federal Avia­
tion Regulations, and airline oper­
ations.
The beginning copilot gener­
ally is permitted only limited re­
sponsibility, such as operating
the flight controls in good weath­
er over a route that is easy to
navigate. As he gains experience
and skill, his responsibilities are
increased gradually, and he is
promoted to copilot on larger,
more modem aircraft. When he
has proved his skill, accumulated
sufficient experience and senior­
ity; 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 prac­
tice, advancement often takes at
least 5 to 10 years or longer. The
new captain works first on his
airline’s smaller equipment and,
as openings arise, he is advanced
to larger, more modem aircraft.
A few opportunities exist for
captains who have 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 sen­
iority, they obtain a better selec­
tion of flight routes, types of air­
craft, and schedules which offer
higher earnings. Some pilots may
go into business for themselves if
they have adequate financial re­
sources and business ability.
They may operate their own fly­
ing schools or air-taxi and other
aerial services. Pilots also may
shift to administrative and in­
spection jobs in aircraft manu­
facturing and Government avia­
tion agencies, or become dis­
patchers for an airline when they
are no longer able to fly.

Em ploym ent O utlook
A rapid rise in the employment
of airline pilots is expected
through the 1970’s. In addition
to those needed to staff new po­
sitions, several thousand job
openings will result from the need
to replace pilots who transfer to
other fields of work, retire, or
die. Although larger, faster, and
more efficient jet planes are like­
ly to be used in the years ahead,
increased passenger and cargo
miles may exceed substantially
the increase in capacity realized
from the new equipment. There­
fore, employment of pilots is like­
ly to increase to the extent that

increased growth of traffic ex­
ceeds increased capacity.
Employment of pilots in gen­
eral aviation activities is ex­
pected to continue to grow very
rapidly, particularly in business
flying, aerial application, air-taxi
operations, and patrol and survey
flying. Growth in these areas will
result from the greater use of air­
craft to perform these general
aviation activities.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Captains and copilots are
among the highest paid wage
earners in the Nation. Those em­
ployed by the scheduled airlines
averaged about $21,000 a year
in domestic air transportation
and nearly $25,000 in interna­
tional operations in 1967. Most
of the senior captains on large
aircraft earned well over $25,000
a year; those assigned to jet air­
craft may earn as much as
$37,000. Pilots employed by the
scheduled airlines generally earn
more than those employed else­
where, although pilots who work
for supplemental airlines may
earn almost as much. Some ex­
perienced copilots were earning
as much as $21,000 a year in do­
mestic flying and more than
$23,000 in international flying in
1967.
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 re­
ceive additional pay for night and
international flights. Captains
and airline copilots who have at
least 3 years of service are guar­
anteed minimum monthly earn­
ings which represent a substan­
tial proportion of their earnings.
Under the Federal Aviation
Act, airline pilots cannot fly more
than 85 hours a month; some un-

697

CIVIL AVIATION OCCUPATIONS

ion-management contracts, how­
ever, provide for 7 5-hour a month
maximums. Though pilots and co­
pilots, in practice, fly approxi­
mately 60 hours a month, their
total duty hours, including be­
fore- and after-flight activities
and layovers before return flights,
usually exceed 100 hours each
month.
Some pilots prefer shorter dis­
tance flying usually associated
with local airlines and commer­
cial flying activities, such as airtaxi 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 in­
volve much physical effort, the
pilot often is subject to stress be­
cause of his great responsibility.
He must be constantly alert and
prepared to make decisions
quickly. Poor weather conditions
also can make his work more
difficult.
Most airline pilots are mem­
bers of the Airline Pilots Asso­
ciation, International. The pilots
employed by one major carrier
are members of the Allied Pilots
Association.

FLIGHT ENGINEERS
(D.O.T. 621.281)

N ature of the W ork and
Places of Em ploym ent

The flight engineer monitors
the operation of the different me­
chanical and electrical devices
aboard the airplane. Before take­
offs, he may inspect the tires and
other outside parts of the plane
and make sure that the plane’s
fuel tanks have been filled prop­
erly. Inside the plane, he assists
the pilot and copilot in making
preflight checks of instruments
and equipment. Once the plane
is airborne, the flight engineer
watches and operates many in­
struments and devices to check
the performance of the engines
and the air-conditioning, pres­
surizing, and electrical systems.
In addition, he keeps records of stationed in or near large cities
engine performance and fuel con­ where long-distance flights origi­
sumption. He reports any me­ nate and terminate.
chanical difficulties to the pilot
and, if possible, makes emergency
repairs. Upon landing, he makes
T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
certain that mechanical troubles
and A dvancem ent
that may have developed are re­
paired by a mechanic. Flight en­
All flight engineers must be li­
gineers employed by the smaller censed by the FAA. A man can
airlines may have to make minor qualify for a flight engineer’s cer­
repairs themselves at those few tificate if he has had 2 years of
airports where mechanics are not training or 3 years of work ex­
stationed.
perience in the maintenance, re­
Flight engineers or second of­ pair, and overhaul of aircraft and
Sources of A dditional Inform ation ficers are required by the Federal engines, including a minimum of
Aviation Administration (FAA), 6 months’ training or a year of
to be on almost all three- and experience on four-engine piston
four-engine aircraft and some and jet planes. He also may
Air Line Pilots Association, Inter­
two-engine jet aircraft. An evalu­ qualify with at least 200 hours of
national, 1329 E St., NW.,
ation of the aircraft and the func­ flight time as a captain of a fourWashington, D.C. 20004.
tions to be performed by the engine piston or jet plane, or with
(See the introductory section
crew determines the need for a 100 hours of experience as a flight
for additional sources of informa­
flight engineer. In 1968 about engineer in the Armed Forces.
tion and for general information
8,000 workers were employed to The most common method of
on supplementary benefits and perform flight engineers’ duties. qualifying is to complete a course
working conditions.)
Most of them worked for the ma­ of ground and flight instruction
jor scheduled airlines and were approved by the FAA.




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

698
In addition to such experience
or training, an applicant for a
license must pass a written test
on flight theory, engine and air­
craft performance, fuel require­
ments, weather as it affects en­
gine operation, and maintenance
procedures. In a practical flight
test on a four-engine plane, he
must demonstrate his skill in per­
forming preflight duties and nor­
mal and emergency in-flight du­
ties and procedures. He also must
pass a rigid physical examination
every year. Most scheduled air­
lines now require applicants for
flight engineer positions to have
a commercial pilot’s license. This
qualification generally is not re­
quired by the nonscheduled air­
lines.
Young men can acquire the
knowledge and skills necessary
to qualify as airline flight engi­
neers through military training
as aircraft pilots, mechanics, or
flight engineers. They also may
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
6 inches to 6 feet 4 inches tall,
and in excellent physical condi­
tion. They require a high school
education but prefer men who
have 2 years of college or more.
Airlines prefer to hire young men
who already have a flight engi­
neer certificate and a commercial
pilot’s license, although they do
select applicants who have only a
commercial pilot’s license and
give them additional training.
A flight engineer can become a
chief flight engineer for his air­
line. Advancement possibilities
usually depend on his qualifica­
tions and the seniority provisions
established by airline union-man­
agement agreements. The flight
engineer with pilot qualifications,
generally called the second offi­
cer, advances on the basis of his




seniority to copilot, and then fol­
low the regular line of advance­
ment open to other copilots.
Flight engineers without pilot
qualifications can advance from
less desirable to more desirable
routes and schedules as they gain
seniority.

E m ploym ent O utlook
Employment of flight engineers
is expected to increase rapidly
during the 1970’s as the number
of heavier jet-powered aircraft,
requiring flight engineers, in­
creases. This development will
contribute to employment growth
in this field, since, in most cases,
the third required crew member
will be a qualified pilot serving
as a flight engineer until his pro­
motion to copilot. (See also the
Handbook statement for Pilots
and Copilots.)

month. Flight engineers in inter­
national operations are limited to
100 hours a month, 300 hours ev­
ery 90 days, or 350 hours every
90 days, depending on the size of
the flight crew.
Most flight engineers who are
not qualified pilots belong to the
Flight Engineers’ International
Association or the International
Association of Machinists and
Aerospace Workers. Those who
are qualified pilots (Second Offi­
cers) are represented by the Air
Line Pilots Association, Interna­
tional.

Sources of A dditional Inform ation
Flight Engineers’ International
Association, 100 Indiana Ave.
NW., Washington, D.C. 20001.

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

Earnings and W orking Conditions
The earnings of flight engineers
in 1968 ranged from $600 to $625
a month for new employees to
approximately $2,200 for experi­
enced flight engineers on jet air­
craft on international flights.
Many flight engineers earned be­
tween $1,200 and $1,800 a
month. Average monthly earnings
for all flight engineers in domes­
tic operations was nearly $1,500;
those employed on international
flights averaged nearly $1,800.
The earnings of flight engineers
depend upon factors such as size,
speed, and type of plane; hours
and miles flown; length of serv­
ice; and the type of flight (such
as night or international). Engi­
neers are guaranteed minimum
monthly earnings, which represent
a substantial proportion of their
total earnings. Their flight time
is restricted, under the Federal
Aviation Act, to 85 hours a

STEWARDESSES
(D.O.T. 352.878)

N atu re of the W ork and
Places of Em ploym ent
Stewardesses or s te w a r d s
(sometimes called flight attend­
ants) are aboard almost all pas­
senger 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 stew­
ardess attends the briefing of the
flight crew. She sees that the pas­
senger cabin is in order, that sup­
plies and emergency passenger
gear are aboard, and that neces­
sary food and beverages are in the

699

CIVIL AVIATION OCCUPATIONS

galley. As the passengers come
aboard, she greets them, checks
their tickets, and assists them
with their coats and small lug­
gage. On some flights, she may
sell tickets.
During the flight, the steward­
ess makes certain that seat belts
are fastened and gives safety in­
structions when required. She an­
swers questions 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 customs in­
formation, instructs passengers
on the use of emergency equip­
ment, and repeats instructions in
an appropriate foreign language
to accommodate foreign passen­
gers.




About 28,500 stewardesses and
1,500 stewards worked for the
scheduled airlines in 1968. About
80 percent were employed by the
domestic airlines, and the rest
worked for international lines.
Nearly all stewards were em­
ployed on overseas flights. Air­
liners generally carry 1 to 6 flight
attendants, depending on the size
of the plane and what proportion
of the flight is economy or firstclass. 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.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Because stewardesses are in con­
stant association with passengers,
the airlines place great stress on
hiring young women who are at­
tractive, poised, tactful, and re­
sourceful. As a rule, applicants
must be 19 to 27 years old, from
5 feet 2 inches to 5 feet 9 inches
tall, with weight in proportion to
height (but not exceeding 140
pounds), and in excellent health.
They also must have a pleasant
speaking voice and good vision.
The major airlines require that
stewardesses be unmarried when
hired but permit girls to work
as stewardesses after they marry.
Applicants for stewardess’ jobs
must have at least a high school
education. Those having 2 years
of college, nurses’ training, or ex­
perience in dealing with the pub­
lic are preferred. Stewardesses
who work for international air­
lines generally must be able to
speak an appropriate foreign
language fluently.
Most large airlines give newly
hired stewardesses about 5 weeks’
training in their own schools.
Girls may receive free transporta­
tion to the training centers and
also may receive an allowance

while in attendance. Training in­
cludes classes in flight regula­
tions and duties, company oper­
ations and schedules, emergency
procedures and first aid, and per­
sonal grooming. A d d i t i o n a l
courses in passport and customs
regulations are given trainees for
the international routes. Toward
the end of their training, students
go on practice flights and per­
form their duties under actual
flight conditions.
A few airlines that do not op­
erate their own schools may em­
ploy graduates who have paid for
their own training at private
stewardesses’ schools. Girls inter­
ested in becoming stewardesses
should check with the airline of
their choice before entering a pri­
vate school to be sure that they
have the necessary qualifications
for the airline, and that the
school’s training is acceptable.
Immediately upon completing
their training, stewardesses re­
port 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 as­
signed to a regular flight, they
may work as reserve flight at­
tendants, 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, steward­
ess instructor, or recruiting repre­
sentative. Advancement opportu­
nities often come quickly because
stewardesses work only about 2 or
3 years, on the average, and then
resign to get married.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Young women will have several
thousand opportunities to get
jobs as stewardesses each year

700

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

some time off may occur between
flights while away from home.
Airlines generally use the sen­
iority bidding system for assign­
ing home bases, flight schedules,
and routes. Stewardesses who
have the longest service, there­
fore, get the more desirable
flights.
The stewardess’ occupation is
exciting and glamorous, with op­
portunities to meet interesting
passengers and see new places.
However, the work can be strenu­
ous and trying. A stewardess may
be on her feet during a large
part of the flight. She must re­
main pleasant and efficient dur­
ing the entire flight, regardless
of how tired she may be.
Most flight attendants are
members of either the Air Line
Stewards and Stewardesses Asso­
ciation of the Transport Workers
Earnings and W orking Conditions Union of America or the Stew­
ards and Stewardesses Division
An examination of union-man-' of the Air Line Pilots Associa­
agement contracts covering sev­ tion, International.
(See introductory section for
eral large domestic and interna­
tional airlines indicates that in general information on supple­
1968, beginning stewardess earn­ mentary benefits and working
ed approximately $433 to $532 conditions.)
a month for 80 hours of flying
time. Stewardesses having 2
years’ experience earned approxi­
mately $493 to $689 a month.
AIRCRAFT MECHANICS
Stewardesses employed on do­
mestic flights averaged $435 a
(D.O.T. 621.281)
month in late 1968; those work­
ing on international flights aver­
aged about $557.
N atu re of the W ork
Since commercial airlines oper­
ate around the clock, 365 days a
Aircraft mechanics have the
year, stewardesses usually work
irregular hours. They may work important job of keeping air­
at night, on holidays, and on planes operating safely and effi­
weekends. They usually are lim­ ciently. Mechanics employed by
ited to 80 hours of flight time a the airlines work either at the
month. In addition, they devote larger airline terminals making
up to 35 hours a month to ground emergency repairs on aircraft
(line-maintenance work) or at an
duties. As a result of irregular
hours and limitations on the airline main overhaul base, where
amount of flying time, some stew­ they make major repairs or per­
ardesses may have 15 days or form the periodic inspections that
more off each month. Of course, are necessary on all aircraft.

during the 1970’s. Most of these
openings will occur as girls marry
or leave the occupation for other
reasons. (About 30 percent of the
employed
stewardesses
leave
their jobs each year.) In addition,
total employment of stewardesses
will grow very rapidly as a result
of the anticipated large increase
in passenger traffic.
Young women interested in be­
coming stewardesses should real­
ize 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 at­
tractiveness, personality, and in­
telligence.




These mechanics may specialize
in work on a particular part of
the aircraft such as propellers,
landing gear, hydraulic equip­
ment, airborne electronic com­
munications and control equip­
ment, instruments, or on sheet
metal sections. They frequently
take apart a complex airplane
component, replace damaged or
worn parts, put the component
together again, 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 malfunction. He then makes
the necessary repairs or adjust­
ments or he may install a new
part; for instance, he may replace
an entire engine when it cannot
be repaired quickly. Line-mainte­
nance mechanics must be all­
round mechanics able to make
repairs on all parts of the plane.
They also may have to do mainte­
nance work such as changing
spark plugs or adding fluid to a
hydraulic system.
Aircraft mechanics employed
in general aviation usually do
maintenance and repair work
comparable with the work per­
formed by line-maintenance me­
chanics. However, the planes
which these mechanics service are
generally smaller and less com­
plex than those flown by the air­
lines. One mechanic frequently
does the entire servicing job with
little supervision, and he works
on many different types of planes
and engines. Mechanics who work
for employers such as certificated
supplemental airlines, air-taxi op­
erators, and independent repair
shops also may do overhaul work.
Independent repair shops usually
specialize in engine, instrument,
or airframe overhaul. (The air­
frame consists of the plane’s

CIVIL AVIATION OCCUPATIONS

fuselage, wings, landing gear,
flight controls, and other parts
which are not part of the engine,
propeller, or instruments.)
Aircraft mechanics use many
different kinds of tools in their
work. These may range from sim­
ple handtools, such as screwdriv­
ers, 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, electrical circuit test­
ers, and magnetic and black light
inspection equipment designed to
detect flaws and cracks in metal
parts.
Places of E m ploym ent
Over 52,000 mechanics were
employed by the scheduled air­




701

lines in 1968. An estimated
50.000 mechanics and supervisory
mechanics were employed by in­
dependent repair shops. A few
thousand mechanics also were
employed by certificated supple­
mental airlines, aerial applica­
tion and air-taxi firms, and busi­
nesses that use their own planes
to transport their key employees
or cargo. Many other aircraft me­
chanics work in aircraft manu­
facturing plants. (These workers,
whose duties are somewhat dif­
ferent from those of airline me­
chanics, are discussed in the
chapter on Occupations in the
Aircraft, Missile, and Spacecraft
Field.)
About 20,000 civilian aircraft
mechanics were employed by the
Air Force in 1968. Another
12.000 worked for the Navy. The

FAA employs several hundred
skilled men with maintenance ex­
perience to inspect aircraft manu­
facturing plants; examine airline
and other commercial flying or­
ganizations’ aircraft maintenance
methods, training programs, and
spare parts stock; and test appli­
cants for FAA mechanic licenses.
This agency also employs approxi­
mately 500 aircraft mechanics to
maintain its own planes. Most of
these men are employed at the
FAA Aeronautical Center in Ok­
lahoma City. Some mechanics are
employed by other Government
agencies, principally the National
Aeronautics and Space Adminis­
tration and the Army.
Most airline mechanics are em­
ployed 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
centers.

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Mechanics responsible for any
repair or maintenance operation
must be licensed by the FAA as
either an “ airframe mechanic”
(to work on the plane’s fuselage,
covering surface, landing gear,
and control surfaces such as rud­
der or ailerons); “ powerplant
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 maintain and re­
pair electronic communications
equipment are required to have
at least a Federal Communica-

702
tions Commission Second Class
Radio Telephone Operator Li­
cense.
At least 18 months’ experience
working with airframes or engines
is required to obtain an airframe
or powerplant license, and at
least 30 months’ experience work­
ing with both engines and air­
frames is required for the com­
bined airframe and powerplant
license. However, this experience
is not required of graduates of
mechanic’s schools approved by
the FAA. In addition to meeting
these requirements, applicants
must pass a written test and give
a practical demonstration of their
ability to do the work. Repair­
men licenses are issued to me­
chanics who are able to perform
those maintenance and repair op­
erations for which their employ­
ers have received FAA authoriza­
tion.
Mechanics may prepare for the
trade and their licenses by work­
ing as trainees or apprentices, or
as helpers to experienced me­
chanics. The larger airlines train
apprentices or trainees in a care­
fully planned 3- or 4-year pro­
gram of instruction and work ex­
perience. Men who have learned
aircraft maintenance in the Arm­
ed Forces usually are given credit
for this training towards the re­
quirements of apprenticeship or
other on-the-job training pro­
grams.
For trainee or apprentice jobs,
the airlines prefer men between
the ages of 20 and 30 who are
in good physical conditon. Appli­
cants should have a high school
or trade school education, includ­
ing courses in mathematics, phy­
sics, chemistry, and machine
shop. Experience in automotive
repairs or other mechanical work
also is helpful.
Other mechanics prepare for
their trade by graduating from
an FAA approved mechanics
school. Most of these schools have




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

an 18- to 24-month program.
Several colleges and universities
also offer 2-year programs that
prepare the student for the FAA
mechanic examinations, and for
jobs as engineering aids and re­
search and development techni­
cians in aircraft manufacturing.
Mechanics generally are re­
quired to have their own handtools which they must pay for
themselves. They usually acquire
their tools gradually.
Several advancement possibili­
ties are available to skilled me­
chanics employed by the sched­
uled airlines. The line of ad­
vancement is usually mechanic,
lead mechanic (or crew chief),
inspector, lead inspector, shop
foreman, and, in a few cases, su­
pervisory and executive positions.
In most shops, mechanics in the
higher grade positions are re­
quired to have both airframe and
powerplant ratings. In many
cases, the mechanic must pass
a company examination before he
is promoted.
T o qualify for jobs as FAA in­
spectors, mechanics must have
broad experience in maintenance
and overhaul work, including su­
pervision over the maintenance
of aircraft. Applicants for this job
also must have both airframe and
powerplant ratings or a combined
rating.

E m ploym ent O utlook

The number of aircraft me­
chanics employed by scheduled
airlines is expected to increase
rapidly through the 1970’s be­
cause of the substantial increase
in the number of aircraft in op­
eration. Rapid growth antici­
pated in general aviation flying
will lead to an increase in the
number of aircraft. An increase

is expected in the number of me­
chanics employed both in firms
providing general aviation serv­
ices and in independent repair
shops. Employment opportunities
for aircraft mechanics in the Fed­
eral Government will depend
largely on the size of the Govern­
ment military aircraft program.
In addition to the openings
that will arise from employment
growth, a few thousand job open­
ings will result annually from the
need to replace mechanics who
transfer to other fields of work,
retire, or die.

Earnings and W orking Conditions

Mechanics employed by the
scheduled domestic and interna­
tional airlines earned, on the
average about $700 a month in
1967. Other aricraft mechanics
generally had lower average earn­
ings. Airline mechanics work in
hangars 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 un­
ion agreements. Most of these
employees are members of the
International Association of Ma­
chinists and Aerospace Workers.
Many others belong to the Inter­
national Brotherhood of Team­
sters, Chauffeurs, Warehousemen
and Helpers of America and the
Transport Workers Union of
America. (See introductory sec­
tion for sources of additional in­
formation and for general infor­
mation on supplementary bene­
fits and working conditions.)

703

CIVIL AVIATION OCCUPATIONS

AIRLINE DISPATCHERS
(D.O.T. 912.168)

N ature of the W ork and Places
of Em ploym ent
Dispatchers (sometimes called
flight superintendents) are em­
ployed by the airlines to coordi­
nate flight schedules and opera­
tions within an assigned area;
they also make sure that all Fed­
eral
Aviation
Administration
(FAA) and company flight and
safety regulations are observed.
After examining weather condi­
tions, the dispatcher makes a
preliminary decision as to wheth­
er a flight may be undertaken
safely. He frequently must ar­
range 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

altitude at which the plane will
fly, the total flying time, and the
alternate fields that may be used
if landing at the scheduled air­
port is hazardous. The dispatcher
and the captain must agree on
all details of the flight before the
plane leaves the airport. In some
instances, the dispatcher is also
responsible for keeping records
and checking matters such as the
availability of aircraft and equip­
ment, the weight and balance of
loaded cargo, the amount of time
flown by each aircraft, and the
number of hours flown by each
crew member based at his station.
After the flight has begun, the
dispatcher plots the plane’s prog­
ress as reported at regular inter­
vals by the captain on the radio,
and keeps the captain informed
of changing weather and other
conditions that might affect his
flight.
The assistant dispatcher helps
the dispatcher plot the progress
of flights, secure weather infor­
mation, and handle communica­
tions with aircraft.
In 1968 only about 1,200 dis­
patchers and assistants were em­
ployed in scheduled domestic and
international operations, primar­
ily at large airports in the United
States. An even smaller number
worked for large certificated sup­
plemental airlines, and for pri­
vate firms which offer dispatch­
ing services to small airlines.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

Airline dispatcher assists pilot in
preflight planning.




Dispatchers are required to
have an FAA dispatcher certifi­
cate. An applicant for such a cer­
tificate may qualify if he has
spent at least a year engaged in
dispatching work under the su­
pervision of a certificated dis­
patcher. He also may qualify by
completing an FAA-approved
dispatcher’s course at a school or

an airline training center. If an
applicant has neither schooling
nor experience, he also may
qualify if he has spent 2 of the
previous 3 years in air traffic
control work, or in airline jobs
such as dispatch clerk, assistant
dispatcher, or radio operator, or
in similar work in military service.
An applicant for an FAA dis­
patcher certificate must pass a
written examination on subjects
such as Federal aviation regula­
tions, weather analysis, air-navi­
gation facilities, radio procedures,
and airport and airway traffic
procedures. In an oral test, he
also has to demonstrate his abili­
ty to interpret weather informa­
tion, his knowledge of landing
and cruising speeds and other laircraft 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. All qualified dis­
patchers are given additional in­
struction by their airlines at spe­
cial training centers so that they
may become familiar with new
flight procedures and with char­
acteristics of new aircraft. Each
year, he also is required to “ fly
the line” as an observer over the
portion of the system which he
services, to maintain his first hand
familiarity with airline routes and
flight operations.
For assistant dispatcher jobs,
which may not require certifica­
tion, airlines prefer men who have
at least 2 years of college or an
equivalent amount of time work­
ing in some phase of air trans­
portation, such as communica­
tions. Preference is given to col­
lege graduates who have had
courses in mathematics, physics,
and related subjects. Some ex­
perience in flying, meteorology,
or business administration is also
helpful.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

704
Most airlines fill assistant dis­
patcher positions by promotion or
transfer from within the com­
pany. Men are preferred who
have had long experience in
ground operations work. As a re­
sult, 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.

Em ploym ent O utlook
The number of workers in this
very small occupation is not ex­
pected to change much during
the 1970’s. Most new workers will
be hired as assistant dispatchers
or dispatch clerks. Job openings
for dispatchers will be filled
mainly by promoting or transfer­
ring experienced 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 difficulties in dispatch­
ing jet aircraft. However, these
factors will be largely offset by
improved radio and telephone
communication facilities which al­
low dispatchers at major termi­
nals to dispatch aircraft at other
airports and over large geographic
areas. Foreign-flag airlines, which
fly between overseas points and
cities in the United States, also
will provide a few job opportu­
nities for dispatchers.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Beginning dispatchers earned
between $800 and $850 a month
in 1968. Dispatchers having 10
years’ service earned between
$1,100 and $1,500 a month. As­
sistant dispatchers earned $550
and over a month to begin and
up to $850 a month after 3 years.
Assistant dispatchers who have




FAA certificates may earn $25 a
month extra. Most dispatchers
are members of the Air-Line Dis­
patchers Association.

Sources of A dditional In fo rm atio n
Air Line Dispatchers Association,
929 West Broad St., Falls
Church, Va. 22130.

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

AIR TRAFFIC
CONTROLLERS
(D.O.T. 193.168)

N atu re of the W ork
Air traffic controllers are the
guardians of the airways. These
employees of the Federal Avia­
tion Administration (FAA) give
instructions, advice, and informa­
tion to pilots by radio to avoid
collisions and minimize delays as
aircraft fly between airports or in
the vicinity of airports. When di­
recting aircraft, traffic controllers
must consider many factors, in­
cluding weather, geography, the
amount of traffic, and the size,
speed, and other operating char­
acteristics of aircraft. The men
who control traffic in the areas
around airports are known as air­
port traffic controllers; those who
guide aircraft between airports
are called air-route traffic con­

trollers.
Airport traffic controllers are
stationed at airport control tow­
ers to give all pilots within the
vicinity of the airport weather in­
formation and take-off and land­
ing instructions such as which

approach and airfield runway to
use and when to change altitude.
They must control simultaneous­
ly several aircraft which appear
as tiny bars on a radar scope.
They talk on the radio first to
one and then to another of the
pilots of these planes, remember­
ing their numbers and their po­
sitions in the air, and give each
of them different instructions.
These workers also keep records
of all messages received from air­
craft and operate runway lights
and other airfield electronic
equipment. They also may send
and receive information to and
from air-route traffic control cen­
ters about flights made over the
airport.
Air-route traffic controllers
are stationed at air traffic control
centers to coordinate the move­
ments of aircraft which are being
flown “ on instruments.” They use
the written flight plans which are
filed by pilots and dispatchers be­
fore aircraft leave the airport. To
make sure that aircraft remain
on course, they check the prog­
ress of flights, using radar and
other electronic equipment and
information received from the
aircraft, other control centers
and towers, and information from
FAA or airline communications
stations.

W here Em ployed

About 14,600 air traffic con­
trollers were employed by the
FAA in 1968. Of these, about half
were airport traffic controllers,
employed at airport control tow­
ers located at key airfields. A few
of these jobs are located at tow­
ers and centers outside the
United States. About 7,600 airroute traffic controllers worked
in 24 control centers scattered
throughout the United States.

CIVIL AVIATION OCCUPATIONS

705
Em ploym ent O utlook

Air traffic controllers guide aircraft with radio and radar.

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and Advancem ent
Applicants for positions as airroute or airport traffic controller
must be 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 pass a written
test designed to measure their
ability to learn, perform the du­
ties of air traffic controller, and
meet certain experience, training,
and related requirements.
Successful applicants for traffic
controller jobs are given approxi­
mately 9 weeks of formal train­
ing to learn the fundamentals of
the airway system, Federal Avia­
tion Regulations, and radar and




aircraft performance characteris­
tics. After completing this train­
ing, controllers qualify for a basic
air traffic control certificate. At
an FAA control tower or center,
they receive additional classroom
instruction and on-the-job train­
ing to become familiar with spe­
cific traffic problems. Only after
he has demonstrated his ability
to apply procedures, and to use
available equipment under pres­
sure and stress, may he work as
a controller. This usually takes
about 2 to 3 years.
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 administrative jobs in
the FAA.

Total employment of air traffic
controllers is expected to increase
moderately through the 1970’s.
The number of air traffic con­
trollers is expected to increase
despite the greater use of auto­
mated equipment.
Additonal air traffic control­
lers will be needed because of the
anticipated growth in the number
of airport towers that will be
built to reduce the burden on ex­
isting facilities and to handle in­
creasing airline traffic. More air­
port controllers also will be
needed to provide services to the
growing number of pilots outside
of the airlines, such as those em­
ployed by companies to fly
executives.
A number of additional airroute traffic controllers will be
needed during the next few years
to handle increases in air traffic.
However, with the expected in­
troduction of an automatic air
traffic control system and a fur­
ther decline in the number of
control centers, employment of
air-route traffic controllers is ex­
pected to moderate in the long
run.
A few hundred openings will
occur each year for controller jobs
because of the need to replace
those workers who leave for other
work, retire, or die.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
The monthly salary for air
traffic controllers during their
first 6 to 12 months of training
averaged about $530 in late 1968.
Air traffic controllers can earn
between $770 to $1,500 a
month, depending on the type of
work they do, the amount of traf­
fic handled at their facility and
how long they have been on the
job. In addition, all traffic con­
trollers are eligible for periodic

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

706
wage increases. In areas that han­
dle extremely large volumes of
air traffic, a chief controller may
earn more than $1,648 a month.
These employees receive the
same annual leave, sick leave,
and other benefits provided other
Federal workers.
FAA controllers work a basic
40-hour week; however, they may
work overtime, for which they
receive equivalent time off or ad­
ditional 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 ro­
tating basis. However, an addi­
tional 10 percent is paid for work
between 6 p.m. and 6 a.m.
Because of the congestion in
air traffic, a controller works un­
der great stress. He is responsible
for directing as many as 10 to 20
aircraft or more at the same time.
He must check simultaneously
flights already under his control,
know the flight schedules of air­
craft 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 additional information
and for general information on
supplementary b e n e f i t s and
working conditions.)

use a radio-telephone to send and
receive spoken messages; some
operators may use a radio-tele­
graph to transmit written mes­
sages. Radio operators occasion­
ally may make minor repairs on
their equipment. T e le 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 special­
ists employed by the Federal
Aviation Administration (FAA)
do some 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 mes­
sages from air traffic control fa­
cilities to other ground station
personnel and to pilots.
Places of Em ploym ent
About 8,200 ground radio op­
erators and teletypists were em­
ployed in air transportation in
1967. Flight service station spe­
cialists employed by the FAA
made up about half of these em­
ployees. The scheduled airlines
employed about 3,400 radio op­
erators and teletypists. An addi­
tional 450 were employed by a
cooperative organization which
offers the airlines, private pilots,

GROUND RADIO OPERATORS
AND TELETYPISTS
(D.O.T. 193.282 and 203.588)

N ature of the W ork
Ground radio operators and
teletypists transmit highly im­
portant messages concerning
weather conditions and other
flight inform ation between
ground station personnel and
flight personnel. Radio operators




Ground radio operators and teletypists process messages in radio room.

707

CIVIL AVIATION OCCUPATIONS

and corporation aircraft its ser­
vices over a centralized commu­
nications system. A few hundred
were employed by the Army and
Navy in civilian communications
occupations.
FAA flight service station spe­
cialists work at stations scattered
along the major airline routes;
some stations are located in re­
mote places. Ground radio oper­
ators and teletypists employed by
the airlines work mostly at air­
ports in or near large cities.
Train in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and Advancem ent
Applicants for airline radio op­
erator jobs usually must have at
least a third-class Federal Com­
munications Commission radio­
telephone or radio-telegraph op­
erator’s permit. However, a sec­
ond-class operator’s permit is pre­
ferred. They also must 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. Teletyp­
ists must be able to type at least
40 words a minute and have had
training or experience in operat­
ing teletype equipment. Appli­
cants for jobs as radio operators
and teletypists also must have a
knowledge of standard codes and
symbols used in communications.
T o qualify for entry positions
as FAA flight service station spe­
cialists, applicants must pass a
written test and meet certain ex­
perience requirements. Perma­
nent appointments are made on
the basis of Federal civil service
examinations.
The airlines usually employ
women as teletypists, and an in­
creasing number are being hired
as radio operators. Both airline
radio operators and teletypists,
and FAA flight service station
specialists serve probationary
periods during which time they




receive on-the-job training. Skill
gained in communications is help­
ful experience for transferring in­
to such other higher paying jobs
such as airline dispatcher.
Em ploym ent O utlook
Openings for entry positions as
radio operators or teletypists will
number less than a hundred each
year during the 1970’s. These
openings will occur 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 auto­
matic communications equipment
which permits communications
for longer distances.
The number of flight service
station specialists employed by
the FAA is expected to increase
slowly in the years ahead. Need
for additional workers to perform
more services for pilots will be
offset by improvements in equip­
ment, and an increase in twoway radios that permit commu­
nications between pilots and air
traffic controllers. The number of
radio operators and teletypists
employed by airlines will increase
slowly due to communications
systems becoming more automat­
ic and centralized.
Earnings and W orking Conditions
The beginning salary for airline
radio operators who held the
minimum third-class permit gen­
erally was between $390 and
$535 a month in 1968. Workers
who held a second-class license
generally received $10 to $25
more a month. The beginning
salary for teletypists ranged from
$450 to $559 a month. Beginning
FAA flight service station spe­
cialists receive between $477 and
$581 a month, depending on edu­
cation and experience; experi­
enced flight service specialists

earn from $705 to $1,105 a
month.
Radio operators and teletyp­
ists in a number of airlines are
unionized. The major union in
these occupational fields is the
C o m m u n i c a t i o n s W o r k e r s of
America.
(See introductory section for
sources of additional information
and for general information on
s u p p l e m e n t a r y b e n e f i t s and
working conditions.)

TRAFFIC AGENTS AND
CLERKS
(D.O.T. 912.368, 919.368)

N atu re of th e W ork
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 sales agents and
clerks give customers flight
schedule and fare information
over the telephone. Reservation
control agents record reservations
as they are made and report the
reservations by teletype machine
to a central computer or to clerks
in other cities so that the same
space will not be sold twice. They
also receive teletype messages in­
forming them of the sale of space.
On some of the larger airlines,
data processing systems receive,
record, and transmit flight space
information to personnel at air­
ports and reservations officers
throughout the entire airline sys­
tem at great speeds. Ticket agents
sell tickets and fill out ticket
forms, including information such
as the flight number and the pas­
senger’s name and destination.

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

708

and clerks by the scheduled air­
lines in 1968. A few thousand
others also were 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 downtown offices
and at airports in or near large
cities where most airline passen­
ger and cargo business originates.
Some are employed in smaller
communities where airlines have
scheduled stops.
T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

They also check and weigh bag­
gage, answer inquiries about
flight schedules and fares, and
keep records of tickets sold. Traf­
fic representatives contact poten­
tial customers to promote greater
use of the airline services.
Operations or station agents
are responsible for the ground
handling of airplanes at their
stations. They supervise the load­
ing and unloading 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 of the
cargo, and keep records of the
number of passengers carried.
They also may make arrival and
departure announcements and
prepare the weather forms that
pilots use when they plan their
routes.
Places of Em ploym ent
About 41,500 men and women
were employed as traffic agents




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 re­
spect to appearance, personality,
and education. A good speaking
voice is essential because these
employees frequently use the
telephone or public address sys­
tems. High school graduation
generally is required, and college
training is considered desirable.
College courses in transporta­
tion such as “ traffic manage­
ment” and “ air transportation,”
as well as experience in other
areas of air transportation, are
helpful for a higher grade job,
such as traffic representative.
Both men and women are em­
ployed as reservation and ticket
agents; however, most operations
agents are men.
Traffic agents may advance to
traffic representative and super­
visor. A few eventually may move
up to city and district traffic and
station manager.
Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of traffic person­
nel will increase rapidly over the
1970’s, mainly because of antici­
pated growth in passenger and

cargo traffic. In addition to the
thousands of opportunities for
new workers that will result from
this employment growth, addi­
tional opportunities will arise as
young women leave their jobs to
marry or rear children.
Most of the major airlines are
installing new machines to record
and process reservations, keep
records, and perform a variety of
other routine tasks. Mechaniza­
tion will affect the reservation
clerks in particular. The employ­
ment of ticket agents, however,
whose main job involves personal
contacts, will not be affected
very much, although their paper
work will be reduced consider­
ably. The small group of traffic
representatives probably will in­
crease substantially as the air­
lines compete for new business.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Limited wage data collected
from union-management con­
tracts covering reservations and
ticket agents employed by sev­
eral airlines indicate that their
beginning salaries ranged from
$430 to $455 a month in 1968.
Those workers having 5 years or
more of experience earned be­
tween $527 to $584 a month.
Station and operations agents
started at about $475 a month
and progressed to about $624 a
month after several years.
Many reservation and trans­
portation agents belong to labor
unions. Most of the organized
agents belong to the Transport
Workers Union of America or the
Brotherhood of Railway and
Steamship Clerks, Freight Han­
dlers, Express and Station Em­
ployees.
(See introductory section for
sources, of additional information
and for general information on
supplementary b e n e f i t s and
working conditions.)

O C C U P A T IO N S IN T H E
E L E C T R I C P O W E R IN D U S T R Y

Nearly every American home,
business, and community is de­
pendent upon electricity. There
would be no modern communica­
tion systems, no highly mecha­
nized industries, and fewer of the
appliances that have become an
indispensable part of every day
life without this most versatile
form of energy. Many types of
workers are needed to produce
electricity, develop additional
markets for it, and distribute it
to the consumer. These workers
include power plant operators,
linemen, electricians, engineers,
research scientists,
salesmen,
technicians, meter readers, and
office workers. Electric utilities
offer interesting jobs and steady
employment for men and women
in several thousand communities
throughout the country.

N ature and Location of the
Industry
The electric power industry in­
cludes about 3,700 electric utility
systems that vary greatly in size
and type of ownership. Utilities
range from large, interconnected
systems serving broad regional
areas to small power companies
serving individual communities.
Many utilities are investor own­
ed (private) or owned by cooper­
atives; others are owned by cities,
counties, and public utility dis­
tricts, as well as by the Federal
Government. Utility systems in­
clude power plants, which gener­
ate electric power; substations,
which increase or decrease the
voltage of this power; and vast
networks of transmission and dis­
tribution lines.

it is the distinctive feature of the
operation of electric power sys­
tems. Electricity cannot be stored
efficiently but must be used as it
is produced. Because a customer
can begin or increase his use of
electric power at any time by
merely flicking a switch, an elec­
tric utility system must have suf­
ficient capacity to meet peak
consumer needs at any time.
Some utilities generate, trans­
mit, and distribute only electric­
ity; others distribute both elec­
tricity and gas. This chapter is
concerned with employment op­
portunities in those jobs relating
only to the production and dis­
tribution of electric power.
In 1968, private, cooperative,
and government utility systems
combined employed nearly 475,000 workers. Privately owned
utilities and cooperatives em­
ployed about 405,000 workers;
Federal, and municipal govern­
ment utilities employed the re­
maining 70,000. A few large man­
ufacturing establishments, which

@1

produce electric power for their
own use, also employ electric
power workers.
Three principal groups of con­
sumers— industrial, residential,
and commercial— purchased more
than 95 percent of all electricity
sold in 1968. Industrial custom­
ers, such as chemical, steel,
aluminum, and a u t o m o b i l e
plants, purchased almost 45 per­
cent of all the electric power sold.
Residential customers purchased
nearly 30 percent, and commer­
cial customers, such as stores,
hotels, and office buildings, pur­
chased about 20 percent.
Electric utility service now
reaches almost every locality and,
therefore, electric utility jobs are
found throughout the country.
Hydroelectric
power projects
have created jobs even in rela­
tively isolated areas. Most utility
jobs, however, are in heavily
populated urban areas, especially
where there are many industrial
users, or where a large utility has
its headquarters.
Producing and distributing
large quantities of electrical en­
ergy involves many processes and
activities. Chart shows how elec­
tric energy is generated, and how
it travels from the generating
station to the users. The first step

H o w Electricity Is M ad e
A n d Brought To The Users
G enerating Plant

High Voltage Transmission

The delivery of electricity to
the user at the instant he needs




709

710

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

in providing electrical energy oc­
curs in a generating station or
plant, where huge generators
convert mechanical energy into
electricity. Electricity is pro­
duced primarily in steam-pow­
ered generating plants which use
coal, gas, or oil for fuel. Some new
steam generating stations use
nuclear energy as a fuel. A con­
siderable amount of electricity
also is produced in hydroelectric
generating stations which use
water power to operate the tur­
bines. Some generators, primarily
for use in standby service or to
provide electricity for special pur­
poses, are powered by internal
combustion and gas turbine
engines.
After electricity is generated, it
passes through a “ switchyard”
where the voltage is increased so
that the electricity may travel
long distances without excessive
loss of power. After leaving the
generating
plant,
electricity
passes onto transmission lines.
These lines carry electricity from
the generating plant to substa­
tions, where the voltage is de­
creased and passed on to the dis­
tribution networks serving in­
dividual customers. Transmission
lines tie together the generating
stations of a single system and
also the power facilties of sev­
eral systems. In this way, power
can be interchanged among sev­
eral utility systems to meet vary­
ing demands.

ers. Another 20 percent are in
maintenance and repair work and
in jobs such as guard, watchman,
and janitor. Approximately 30
percent are employed in adminis­
trative and clerical jobs, 10 per­
cent in customer servicing jobs,
and 10 percent in scientific, engi­
neering, and other technical
occupations.
In addition to the powerplant,
transmission, and customer serv­
ice occupations (discussed in de­
tail later in this chapter), the
electric power industry employs
large numbers of workers in main­
tenance, engineering, scientific,
administrative, sales, and clerical
occupations. The latter occupa­
tions are discussed briefly below.
Detailed discussions of these and
other occupations in the electric
power industry and in many other
industries are given in the Hand­
book sections covering the indi­
vidual occupations.

Electric U tility Occupations

Engineering and Scientific Occu­
pations. Many interesting job op­

Workers are needed in many
different occupations to produce
electric power for instant use.
About 10 percent of the em­
ployees in this industry work in
occupations directly related to
the generation of electricity.
About 20 percent are in jobs re­
lated to the transmission and dis­
tribution of power to the custom­

portunities are available for en­
gineers and technical workers in
electric utilities. Engineers plan
generating plant additions, inter­
connections of complex power
systems, and installations of new
transmission and distribution
equipment. They supervise con­
struction, develop improved oper­
ating methods, and test the effi­




Maintenance and Other Occupa­
tions. A considerable number of
workers maintain and repair the
equipment used by the electrical
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, instrument repair­
men, maintenance mechanics, ma­
chinists, pipefitters, and boiler­
makers. Other workers are em­
ployed as guards, watchmen, and
janitors.

ciency of the many types of elec­
trical equipment. In planning
modern power systems, engineers
select plant sites, types of fuel,
and types of plants. Engineers
also help industrial and commer­
cial customers make the best use
of electric power for equipment
and lighting. They stimulate
greater use of electricity by dem­
onstrating the advantages of elec­
trical equipment and suggesting
places where electricity can be
used more effectively.

Administrative and Clerical Occu­
pations. Because of the enormous
amount of recordkeeping neces­
sary to run the business opera­
tions, electric utilities employ a
higher proportion of administra­
tive and clerical personnel than
many other industries. Nearly
one-third of the industry’s work
force is employed in clerical and
administrative jobs. Many of
these workers are women. Large
numbers of stenographers, typ­
ists, bookkeepers, office machine
operators, file clerks, accounting
and auditing clerks, and cashiers
are employed. These workers
keep records of the services ren­
dered by the company, make up
bills for customers, and prepare
a variety of statements and sta­
tistical reports. An increasing
amount of this work in the
larger offices now is being per­
formed by electronic data-processing equipment. This generally
results in more clerical work
being done with the same or
fewer employees. The use of this
equipment also creates require­
ments for programers and com­
puter operators. Administrative
employees include accountants,
personnel officers, purchasing
agents, and lawyers.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment in the electric
power industry is expected to

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ELECTRIC POWER INDUSTRY

grow slowly during the 1970’s, al­
though the production of electric
power is expected to increase sub­
stantially. In addition to new jobs
created by employment growth,
several thousand job opportuni­
ties for new workers will occur
each year during this period to
replace workers who retire, die,
or leave the industry for other
work.
Industrial customers are ex­
pected to use more electricity be­
cause of the widening application
of electric power to industrial
processes. Use of electricity by
residential customers is expected
to rise because of the continued
growth in population and the
number of households. In addi­
tion, residential customers are
expected to increase their use of
electricity for heating and air con­
ditioning, and for an increasing
number and variety of appliances.
The construction of new stores
and office buildings and the mod­
ernization of existing structures
will expand the use of electricity
by commercial customers.
However, the growing use of
automatic controls in this highly
mechanized industry makes pos­
sible large increases in the pro­
duction of electric power with
little increase in employment. For
example, since operators in gen­
erating stations are needed chiefly
to check gages and control in­
struments, improvements in gen­
erating equipment have made
possible great increases in the in­
dustry’s capacity and production
with only small increases in the
number of operators. Continuing
development of larger and more
highly mechanized equipment
with many automatic controls
will result in a decline in the num­
ber of these operators. The em­
ployment of substation operators
will continue to decline because
of the installation of completely
automatic equipment in all but
the largest substations. Employ­




ment decreases in these occupa­
tions may be offset by the expect­
ed growth in the number of main­
tenance and repair craftsmen
needed to keep the industry’s in­
creasing amount of complex ma­
chinery in operating condition.
The employment of workers in
maintenance and repair of trans­
mission and distribution lines is
expected to remain relatively
stable. Fewer men per crew will
be needed to work on electric
power lines because of the increas­
ing use of mechanized equipment
for setting poles and for string­
ing and maintaining lines. How­
ever, this reduction in jobs per
crew may be offset by the larger
number of crews needed to serv­
ice the expanding distribution
systems
required
by
the
growing number of electric power
customers.
Because of the increasing use
of
electronic
data-processing
equipment for billing and record­
keeping, 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 also is expected
in administrative jobs; scientific,
engineering, and other technical
jobs; and in areas such as sales
and market development.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Earnings in the electric utility
industry generally are higher than
in other public utility industries
and in many manufacturing in­
dustries. In 1968, earnings of
nonsupervisory employees in pri­
vate electric power utilities av­
eraged $3.71 an hour or nearly
$155 a week.
Many nonsupervisory electric
utility workers in production,
transmission, and distribution de­
partments are union members.

711
The bargaining representative for
most of these workers is either the
International Brotherhood of
Electrical Workers or the Utility
Workers Union of America. Inde­
pendent unions represent some
utility workers.
Because supplying electricity is
a 24-hour, 7-day-a-week activity,
some employees work 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 1968, most
workers on the second shift re­
ceived from 10 to 20 cents an hour
more than the basic day rate, and
those on the third shift, from 10
to 25 cents an hour more.
Overtime work often is re­
quired, especially during emer­
gencies such as floods, hurricanes,
or storms. During an “ emergency
callout,” which is a short-notice
request to report to work during
nonscheduled hours, the worker
generally is guaranteed a mini­
mum of 3 or 4 hours’ pay at 1%
times his basic hourly rate. Travel
time to and from the job is count­
ed as worktime.
In addition to these provisions
which affect pay, electric utilities
provide other employee benefits.
Annual vacations are granted to
workers according to length of
service. Usually, contracts or em­
ployee benefit programs provide
for a 1-week vacation for 6
months to 1 year of service, 2
weeks for 1 to 10 years, and 3
weeks for 10 to 20 years. A num­
ber of contracts and programs
provide for 4 weeks after 18 years
and for 5 weeks after 25 years or
more. The number of paid holi­
days ranges from 6 to 12 days a
year. Nearly all companies have
benefit plans for their employees.
A typical program provides life,
hospitalization, and surgical in­
surance and paid sick leave. Re­
tirement pension plans supple­
ment Federal social security pay-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

712
ments and generally are paid for
in full or in part by the employer.
The number of injuries per
million man-hours worked is much
lower in this industry than in
most manufacturing industries.
Some occupations are more sub­
ject to accidents than others. Ac­
cidents occur most frequently
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.
Sources of A d ditional Inform ation
More information about jobs in
the electric power industry may
be obtained from local electric
utility companies, industry trade
associations, or from the local of­
fices of unions which have electric
utility workers among their mem­
bership. Additional information
may be obtained from:
Edison Electric Institute, 750 3rd
Avenue, New York, New York
10017.
International
Brotherhood
of
Electrical Workers, 1200 15th
St. NW., Washington, D.C.
20005.
Utility Workers’ Union of Amer­
ica, 1875 Conn. Ave. NW.,
Washington, D.C. 20006.

POWERPLANT
OCCUPATIONS
N atu re of the W ork
Operators are key workers in a
powerplant. They observe, con­
trol, and keep records of the op­
eration of various kinds of powerplant equipment. They make sure
the equipment functions efficient­
ly and detect any trouble that
arises. There are four basic classes




of operators— boiler, turbine, aux­
iliary equipment, and switch­
board operators. In many new
steam plants, the duties of these
operators are combined, and op­
erators and their assistants are
known as steam operators, powerplant operators, or central control
room operators. Of increasing im­
portance in this highly mechan­
ized industry are the maintenance
men and repairmen, including
electrical, instrument, and me­
chanical repairmen. Other pow­
erplant workers include helpers
and cleaners, and the custodial
staff, including janitors and
watchmen. Coal handlers are em­
ployed in steam generating plants
that use coal for fuel. Hydroelec­
tric plants employ gate tenders
who open and close the headgates that control the flow of wa­
ter 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. 950.782) 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 gages, meters, and other in­
struments mounted on panel
boards. One man may operate one
or more boilers. Boiler operators,
are employed only where steam
is used to generate electricity.
Turbine operators
(D.O.T.
952.138) control the operation of
steam- or water-powered turbines
which drive the generators. (In
small plants, they also may op­
erate auxiliary equipment or a
switchboard.) Modern steam tur­
bines and generators operate at
extremely high speeds, pressures,
and
temperatures;
therefore,
close attention must be given the
pressure gages, thermometers,
and other instruments which
show the operations of the turbo­
generator unit. Turbine operators
record the information shown by

these instruments and check the
oil pressure at bearings, the speed
of the turbines, and the circula­
tion and amount of cooling water
in the condensers which change
the steam back into water. They
also are responsible for starting
and shutting down the turbines
and generators, as directed by the
switchboard operator in the con­
trol room. Other workers, such as
helpers and junior operators,
assist the turbine operators.

Auxiliary equipment operators
(D.O.T. 952.782) check and re­
cord the readings of instruments
that indicate the operating con­
dition of pumps, fans, blowers,
condensers, evaporators, water
conditioners, compressors, and
coal pulverizers. Since auxiliary
equipment may break down occa­
sionally, these operators must be
able to detect trouble quickly,
make accurate judgments, and
sometimes make repairs. Some
small plants do not employ aux­
iliary equipment operators; these
duties are performed by turbine
operators.
Switchboard operators (D.O.T.
952.782) control the flow of elec­
tric power in the generating sta­
tion from generators to outgoing
powerlines. They usually work in
a control room equipped with
switchboards and instrument pan­
els. Switches control the move­
ment 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 cur­
rent being produced by each gen­
erator, and the voltage. The op­
erators use switches to distribute
the power demands among the
generators in the station, to com­
bine the current from two or more
generators, and to regulate the
flow of the electricity onto vari­
ous powerlines to meet the de-

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ELECTRIC POWER INDUSTRY

713
equipment, which in older plants
requires specialists such as boiler
and turbine operators. Control
room operators have several as­
sistants whose duties include pa­
trolling the plant and checking
the equipment. The central con­
trol room operators report to the
plant superintendent or watch
engineers when equipment is not
operating properly.
Watch engineers (D.O.T. 950.131) are the principal supervisory
workers in a powerplant. They
supervise the employees respon­
sible for the operation and main­
tenance of boilers, turbines, gen­
erators,
auxiliary equipment,
switchboards, transformers, and
other machinery and equipment.
Watch engineers are supervised
by a chief engineer or a plant su­
perintendent who is in charge of
the entire plant.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent

Operator checks instrument readings at nuclear powered generating plant.

mands of the users served by
each line. When power require­
ments on the station change, they
order generators started or stop­
ped and, at the proper time, con­
nect them to the power circuits
in the station or disconnect them.
In doing this work, they follow
telephone orders from the load
dispatcher who directs the flow
of current throughout the system.
Switchboard operators and
their assistants also check their
instruments frequently to see
that electricity is moving through
and out of the powerplant prop­
erly, and that correct voltage is
being maintained. Among their




other duties, they keep records of
all switching operations and of
load conditions on generators,
lines, and transformers. They ob­
tain this information by making
regular meter readings.
In most powerplants construct­
ed in recent years, the operation
of boilers, turbines, auxiliary
equipment, and the switching re­
quired for efficient balancing of
generator output has been cen­
tralized in a single control room.
Here, central control room opera­
tors or power plant operators, by
monitoring instrument panels
and manipulating switches, reg­
ulate all the power generating

New powerplant workers gen­
erally 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 op­
erations of a powerplant. They
advance to the more responsible
job of helper, as job openings
occur. Formal apprenticeships in
these jobs are rare. Applicants
generally are required to have a
high school education or its
equivalent. Advancement on the
job depends primarily on one’s
ability to master the skills re­
quired.
It takes from 1 to 3 years to
become an auxiliary equipment
operator and from 4 to 8 years
to become a boiler operator, tur­
bine operator, or switchboard op­
erator. A person learning to be an
auxiliary equipment operator pro­
gresses from helper to junior op­
erator to operator. A boiler opera-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

714
tor 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 eventually to boiler operator,
or transfer to the maintenance
department and work his way up
to boiler repairman. In most large
cities, boiler operators, who op­
erate highpressure boilers, are re­
quired to be licensed.




Powerplant workers employed
in atomic-powered electric plants
must have special training to work
with fissionable, radioactive fuel,
in addition to the knowledge and
skills required for the generation
of conventional steam generated
electric power.
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 ad­
vance either to junior turbine op­
erator 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 promoted to jobs in the
larger stations as vacancies occur.
New workers in the switchboard
operators section begin as helpers,
advance to junior operators, and
then to switchboard operators.
They also may advance from jobs
in small stations to those in larger
stations where operating condi­
tions are much more complex.
Some utility companies promote
substation operators to switch­
board operating jobs. The duties
of both classes of operators have
much in common. Switchboard
operators can advance to work in
the load dispatcher’s office.
Watch engineers are selected
from among experienced powerplant operators. At least 5 to 10
years of experience as a firstclass operator usually are re­
quired to qualify for a watch en­
gineer’s job.

Em ploym ent O utlook

Operator checks control panel.

The total number of jobs for
powerplant operators is expected
to show little change during the
1970’s, although the production
of electrical energy will increase
at a rapid rate. However, several
hundred job openings for new
workers will occur each year to
replace operators who retire, die,
or leave the industry for other
work.
The use of increasingly larger
and more efficient equipment is
expected to make possible great
increases in capacity and produc-

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ELECTRIC POWER INDUSTRY

tion with little increase in the
number of powerplant operators.
For example, one operator can
control a large modem turbogen­
erator as readily as he can con­
trol a much smaller one. Also, the
growing use of more automatic
equipment reduces the number of
operators needed, and makes it
possible to direct all operating
processes from a central control
room. However, because of the
expected increased demand for
electric power, it will be necessary
to build and operate many new
generating stations.
Generally, operating a nuclearpowered plant requires about the
same number of employees as
running a steam-generating plant
using fossil fuels.

Earnings and W orking Conditions
The earnings of powerplant
workers depend on the type of
job, the section of the country in
which they work, and many other
factors. The following tabulation
shows estimated average hourly
earnings for selected powerplant
occupations in privately operated
utilities in November 1967:
A v e ra g e

hourly
earnings

Auxiliary equipment operator .. $3.40
Boiler operator.......................... 3.84
Control room operator ............ 4.19
Switchboard operator:
Switchboard operator,
Class A ............................ 4.08
Switchboard operator,
Class B ............................ 3.74
Turbine operator...................... 3.96
Watch engineer ........................ 4.99

A powerplant is typically well
lighted and ventilated, clean, and
orderly, but there is some noise
from the whirring turbines.
Switchboard operators in the
control room often sit at the panel
boards, but boiler and turbine op­
erators are almost constantly on
their feet. The work of power-




plant operators generally is not
physically strenuous, particularly
in the newer powerplants. Since
generating stations operate 24
hours a day, 7 days a week, pow­
erplant employees sometimes
must work nights and weekends.

TRANSMISSION AND
DISTRIBUTION
OCCUPATIONS
N ature of th e W ork
One-fifth of the workers em­
ployed by electric light and power
systems are in transmission and
distribution jobs maintaining the
flow of electric power to the users.
The principal workers in trans­
mission and distribution jobs are
those who control the flow of elec­
tricity— load dispatchers and sub­
station operators— and the men
who construct and maintain pow­
erlines— linemen, cable splicers,
troublemen,
groundmen,
and
helpers. Linemen make up the
largest single occupation in the
industry.
Load dispatchers (D.O.T. 950.168) (sometimes called system
operators or power dispatchers)
are the key operating workers of
the transmission and distribution
departments. They control the
flow of electricity throughout the
area served by the utility. The
load dispatcher’s room is the
nerve center of the entire utility
system. From this location, he
controls the plant equipment
used to generate electricity and
directs its flow throughout the
system. He telephones his instruc­
tions to the switchboard operators
at the generating plants and the
substations. He tells the opera­
tors when additional boilers and
generators are to be started or
stopped in line with the total pow­
er needs of the system.

715
The load dispatcher must an­
ticipate demands for electric
power so that the system will be
prepared to meet them. Power de­
mands on utility systems may
change from hour to hour. A sud­
den afternoon rainstorm can
cause a million lights to be switch­
ed on in a matter of minutes.
He also directs the handling of
any emergency situation, such as
a transformer or transmission line
failure, and routes current around
the affected area. Load dispatch­
ers also may be in charge of inter­
connections with other systems,
and they direct the transfer of
current between systems as the
need arises.
The load dispatcher’s source of
information for the entire trans­
mission system centers in the
pilot board. This pilot board,
which dominates the load dis­
patcher’s room, is a complete mkp
of the utility’s transmission sys­
tem. It enables the dispatcher to
determine, at a glance, the con­
ditions that exist at any point in
the system. Lights may show the
positions of switches which con­
trol generating equipment and
transmission circuits, as well as
high voltage connections with
substations and large industrial
customers. The board also may
have several recording instru­
ments which make a graphic rec­
ord of operations for future analy­
sis and study.
Substation operators (D.O.T.
952.782) generally are in charge
of a substation and are respon­
sible for its operation. Under
orders from the load dispatcher,
they direct the flow of current out
of the station by means of a
switchboard. Ammeters, voltmet­
ers, 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 in­
coming to the outgoing lines is
controlled by circuit breakers.

716
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 op­
erator controls converters which
perform the change.
In addition to switching duties,
the substation operators check
the operating condition of all
equipment to make sure that it is
in good working condition. They
supervise the activities of the
other substation employees on the
same shift, assign them tasks,
and direct their work. In smaller
substations, the substation opera­
tor may be the only employee.
Linemen (D.O.T. 821.381) con­
struct and maintain the network
of powerlines which carry electric­
ity from generating plants to con­
sumers. Their work consists of in­
stallations, equipment replace­
ments, repairs, and routine main­
tenance work. Although in many
companies the installation of new
lines and equipment is important,
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. Most
linemen now work from “ bucket”
trucks with pneumatic lifts that
take them to the top of the pole
or adjacent to the overhead con­
ductor at the touch of a lever.
In some power companies, line­
men 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. 821.281)




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

are experienced linemen who are
assigned to special crews that
handle emergency calls for serv­
ice. They move from one special
job to another, as ordered by a
central service office which re­
ceives reports of line trouble.
Often troublemen receive their
orders by direct radio communi­
cation with the central service
office.
These workers must have a
thorough knowledge of the com­
pany’s transmission and distribu­
tion network. They first locate
and report the source of trouble
and then attempt to restore serv­
ice by making the necessary re­
pairs. Depending 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.
Groundmen (D.O.T. 821.887)
dig poleholes and assist the line­
men and apprentices to erect the
wooden poles which carry the dis­
tribution 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 in­
stall them on the poles or towers
by attaching them to the insula­
tors. In addition, with assistance
from groundmen, linemen attach
a wide variety of equipment to
the poles and towers, such as
lightning arrestors, transformers,
and switches.
Cable splicers (D.O.T. 829.381) install and repair single- and
multiple-conductor insulated ca­
bles on utility poles and towers,
as well as those buried under­
ground or installed in under­
ground conduits. When cables are
installed, the cable splicers pull
the cable through the conduit

Lineman works on transmission line.

and then join the cables at con­
necting points in the transmission
and distribution systems. At each
connection in the cable, they wrap
insulation around the wiring.
They splice the conductors lead­
ing away from each junction of
the main cable, insulate the
splices, and connect the cable
sheathing. Many cables have a
lead sheath which requires mak­
ing a lead joint. Most of the phys­
ical work in placing new cables
or replacing old cables is done by
helpers.
Cable splicers spend most of
their time repairing and main­
taining the cables and changing
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
make sure that the conductors do
not become mixed up between the

717

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ELECTRIC POWER INDUSTRY

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 iden­
tifying number at the remote
panel box in an underground
vault as they have in the control
office. Cable splicers also make
sure the insulation on the cables
is in good condition.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Load dispatchers are selected
from among the experienced
switchboard operators and from
operators of the larger substa­
tions. Usually, 7 to 10 years of
experience as a senior switch­
board or substation operator are
required for promotion to load
dispatcher. To qualify for this
job, an applicant must demon­
strate his knowledge of the entire
utility system.
Substation operators generally
begin as assistant or junior oper­
ators. Advancement to the job
of operator in a large substation
requires from 3 to 7 years of onthe-job training.
Skilled linemen (journeymen)
usually qualify for these jobs after
about 4 years of on-the-job train­
ing. In some companies, this train­
ing consists of a formal appren­
ticeship program. Under formal
apprenticeship, there is a written
agreement, usually worked out
with a labor union, which covers
the content of the training and
the length of time the apprentice
works in each stage of the train­
ing. The apprenticeship program
combines on-the-job training and
classroom instruction in blue­
print reading, elementary electri­
cal theory, electrical codes, and
methods of transmitting electrical
currents.
The apprentice usually begins
his training by helping the




groundman to set poles in place
and by passing tools and equip­
ment up to the lineman. After a
training period of approximately
6 months, the apprentice begins
to do simple linework on lines
having low voltage. While per­
forming this work, he is under the
immediate supervision of a jour­
neyman lineman or the line fore­
man. After about a year, he is
assigned more difficult work but
is still under close supervision.
During 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 com­
pany’s transmission and distribu­
tion systems, he may advance
from lineman to troubleman.
The training of linemen who
learn their skills on the job gengenerally is similar to the appren­
ticeship 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 becom­
ing a skilled lineman.

Candidates for linework should
be strong, in good physical con­
dition, and without fear of height.
Climbing poles and lifting lines
and equipment is strenuous work.
They also must 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 tak­
ing about 4 years to become fully
qualified. Workers begin as help­
ers and then are promoted to as­
sistant or junior splicers. In these
jobs, they are assigned more dif­
ficult tasks as their knowledge of
the work increases.

E m ploym ent O utlook
Several thousand job oppor­
tunities are expected to be avail­
able in transmission and distri­
bution occupations during the
1970’s. Most of these opportuni­
ties will occur because of the re­
placement of experienced workers
who retire, die, or transfer to
other fields of work.
Some increase in the employ­
ment of transmission and distri­
bution workers is expected, al­
though employment trends will
differ among the various occupa-

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

718
tions in this category. In spite of
the need to construct and main­
tain a rapidly growing number of
transmission and distribution
lines, the number of linemen and
troublemen is expected to in­
crease only slightly because of the
use of more mechanized equip­
ment. Some increase in the num­
ber of cable splicers is expected
because of the growing use of un­
derground lines in suburban
areas. The need for substation
operators will be reduced substan­
tially, since the introduction of
improved and more automatic
equipment makes it possible to
operate most substations by re­
mote control.
Earnings and W orking Conditions
The earnings of transmission
and distribution workers depend
on the type of job they have, and
the section of the country in
which they work. The following
tabulation shows the average
hourly earnings for major trans­
mission and distribution occupa­
tions in privately operated utili­
ties in November 1967:
Average
hourly
earnings

Groundman ................................ $2.71
Lineman..................................... 4.09
Load dispatcher ........................ 4.90
Substation operator.................. 4.01
Troubleman................................ 4.20

Load dispatchers and substa­
tion operators generally work in­
doors in pleasant surroundings.
Linemen, t r o u b l e m e n , and
groundmen work outdoors and, in
emergencies, in all kinds of weath­
er. Cable splicers do most of their
work in manholes beneath city
streets— often in cramped quar­
ters. Safety standards developed
over the years by utility compan­
ies, with the cooperation of labor
unions, have reduced greatly the
accident hazards of these jobs.




CUSTOMER SERVICE
OCCUPATIONS
N atu re of th e 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 serv­
icemen working in company-oper­
ated shops which repair electrical
equipment owned by customers.
Metermen (D.O.T. 729.281)
(or meter repairmen) are the
most skilled workers in this
group. They install, test, main­
tain, and repair meters on cus­
tomers’ premises, particularly
those of large industrial and com­
mercial establishments. Some me­
termen can handle all types of
meters, including the more com­
plicated ones used in industrial
plants and other places where
large quantities of electric power
are used. Others specialize in re­
pairing the simpler kinds, like
those in homes. Often, some of
the large systems have meter spe­
cialists, such as meter installers
(D.O.T. 821.381) and meter
testers (D.O.T. 729.281). Meter
installers put in and take out
meters. Meter testers specialize in
testing the small meters on homeowners’ property and some of the
more complicated ones used by
commercial and i n d u s t r i a l
customers.
Meter readers (D.O.T. 239.588) go to customers’ premises—
homes, stores, and factories— to
read the figures on the meters
which register the amount of elec­
tric current used. They record the
amount of current used in a spe­
cific 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 company agents in out­
lying districts, in localities where
the utility company does not have
an office, and where the small
number of customers does not
justify the use of more special­
ized workers. Their work includes
reading meters, collecting over­
due bills, connecting and discon­
necting meters, and making minor
repairs. They receive complaints
about service and reports of line
trouble and send them to a cen­
tral office for handling.

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Metermen begin their jobs as
helpers in the meter testing and
meter repair departments. Young
men entering this field should
have a basic knowledge of elec­
tricity. About 4 years of on-thejob training are required to be­
come a fully qualified meterman.
Some companies have formal ap­
prenticeship programs for this
occupation in which the trainee
progresses according to a specific
plan.
Utility companies usually em­
ploy inexperienced men to work
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 weeks.
The duties of district repre­
sentatives 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.

E m ploym ent O utlook
Little change in employment in
customer service occupations is
expected through the 1970’s. The
need for meter readers will be

OCCUPATIONS IN THE ELECTRIC POWER INDUSTRY

limited because of the trend
toward less frequent reading of
meters.
Moreover,
automatic
meter reading may become more
common, and new meters will re­
quire less maintenance. However,
some job openings for metermen
and meter readers will occur each
year to replace those workers who
retire, die, or transfer to other
fields of work.

719

type of job they have, and the
section of the country in which
they work. The following tabula­
tion shows the average hourly
earnings for major customer serv­
ice jobs in privately operated
utilities in November 1967:
A v era g e

hourly
earnings

Earnings and W orking Conditions

District representative ............ $3.80
Meterman A .............................. 3.96
Meterman B .............................. 3.53
Appliance serviceman.............. 3.67
Meter reader.............................. 2.98

The earnings of customer serv­
ice workers vary according to the

The job of the meter reader is
not physically strenuous but in­




volves considerable walking and
some stair climbing. Metermen
and appliance servicemen work
indoors under typical repair shop
conditions except when repairing
or installing meters or appliances
on customers’ premises.




M E R C H A N T M A R IN E O C C U P A T IO N S

The American merchant ma­
rine is more than a vital link in
the Nation’s transportation sys­
tem. It is our life-line in both
peace and war and links us to
every corner of the world. It trans­
ports America’s exports and in
return, brings imports from the
rest of the world. In time of con­
flict, it carries troops, arms, and
supplies to combat areas. Seafar­
ing employment offers a wide
variety of interesting and reward­
ing careers requiring diverse
skills and levels of experience as
well as an opportunity for travel
and adventure.

N atu re and Location of the
Industry

marily petroleum and petroleum
products, almost exclusively in
the domestic trade between Gulf
Coast ports and Atlantic Coast
ports. The more than 800 freight­
er vessels, on the other hand, are
employed almost exclusively in
the foreign trade of the United
States. More than half of these
vessels are employed in liner ser­
vice to carry relatively high val­
ued packaged cargoes on fixed
schedules. Freighters are of vari­
ous types, such as general cargo
vessels, bulk carriers, refrigerator
ships, roll-on-roll-off container,
trailer, and other special-purpose
type ships.

Places of Em ploym ent

The United States Flag Mer­ % The U.S. Flag Merchant Fleet
chant Fleet consists of ocean-go­ employed about 60,000 seamen
ing vessels of 1,000 gross tons or in mid-1968, two-thirds of whom
over which carry U.S. foreign and were on freighters. Many addi­
domestic water-borne commerce. tional men were employed during
Approximately
1,100
vessels the year because many seamen
were in the active U.S. ocean­ leave their ships at the termina­
going merchant fleet in mid- tion of a voyage; some take va­
1968, of which about 2 out of cations which may average 100
every 3 were privately-owned. days or more each year; others
Government-owned vessels are take temporary shoreside jobs or
operated by the Navy’s Military are unavailable for sea duty be­
Sea Transportation S e r v i c e
cause of illness or injury.
(M ST S ) which has civilian sea­
Although there are about 70
faring personnel. Three broad ports in the United States, more
categories of vessels constitute than half of the Nation’s shipping
the merchant fleet: combination is carried on in 17 deep-sea ports
passenger-cargo vessels, tankers, along the Atlantic, Gulf, and Pa­
and freighters. Vessels in our cific Coasts. The Nation’s largest
“ liner fleet” operate on regular port is New York. Other major
schedules
to
specific ports. Atlantic ports are Philadelphia,
“ Tramp” ships, on the other Baltimore,
Norfolk,
Boston,
hand, sail for any port promising Charleston, Savannah, Tampa,
profit.
and Jacksonville. Gulf ports
This country’s 26 combination handling substantial volumes of
passenger vessels carry passen­ cargo include New Orleans, Hous­
gers, mail, and highly valued car­ ton, Galveston, Port Arthur, and
go on a regularly scheduled basis. Lake Charles. Shipping on the
Its approximately 270 tankers West Coast is concentrated in
carry liquid bulk products, pri­ the areas of San Francisco Bay,



Los Angeles, and Seattle and
Portland.
The size and composition of
crews employed aboard merchant
vessels depend on the size and
type of vessel. Cargo vessels and
tankers have crews varying from
36 to 65 men, passenger vessels
such as the United States may
have a crew of a 1,000 or more.
The work performed aboard
ship is divided among the deck,
engine, and steward departments.
The deck department is re­
sponsible for the navigation
of the vessel, maintenance of the
hull and deck equipment, and the
loading, discharging, and storing
of cargo. Personnel in the engine
department operate and maintain
the machinery that propels the
vessel. The steward’s department
feeds the crew and maintains liv­
ing and recreation areas.
About one-fourth of the jobs in
the merchant marine are filled by
licensed personnel that include
highly skilled licensed supervis­
ory and professional workers in
the deck and engine departments.
The remaining berths are filled
by skilled and semiskilled per­
sonnel in the deck, engine, and
steward’s departments.

Training , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
No educational requirements
are established for either licensed
or unlicensed positions in the
merchant marine industry. Like
most jobs today, a good educa­
tion is a definite advantage.
Training for licensed ratings is
conducted at the United States
Merchant Marine Academy, at
five State merchant marine
academies, and through programs
operated by trade unions in the
merchant marine industry. Un­
ions also conduct training pro­
grams to upgrade the ratings of
unlicensed seamen and, to a lim­
ited degree, to train prospective
seamen for entry ratings.
721

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

722
Ship officers are licensed. To
obtain an officer’s license, candi­
dates must be United States citi­
zens, physically fit, and pass a
comprehensive written examina­
tion by the U.S. Coast Guard.
Unlicensed crewmen going to sea
for the first time must obtain a
merchant mariner’s document
from the Coast Guard. T o obtain
the document, applicants must
present proof that they have job
offers as members of a crew of
a U.S. merchant vessel and pass
a physical examination.
Young persons considering the
merchant marine as a career
should give serious thought to
the department (deck, engine,
steward) in which they would
like to work. Once a man starts
up the ladder in one department
he cannot switch without begin­
ning near the bottom again. Ad­
vancement to a higher rating de­
pends not only upon specified
sea experience, leadership ability,
and an opening, but also upon
passing a Coast Guard examina­
tion. Examinations for officer
positions require a much higher
level of theoretical knowledge
than certification in the unli­
censed ranks.
Deck officers start as third
mates, and after accumulating
prescribed amounts of sea service,
may advance to second mate, to
first mate, and finally to master.
An officer in the engine depart­
ment starts as a third assistant
engineer and, in turn, may ad­
vance to second assistant engi­
neer, first assistant engineer, and
finally to chief engineer.
Unlicensed personnel also ad­
vance along well defined promo­
tional lines. In the deck depart­
ment, persons may advance from
ordinary seamen to able seamen
(A .B .). Some able seamen are
upgraded to boatswains (fore­
men). In the engine department
an unlicensed seaman usually ad­
vances from wiper to fireman/




watertender or to oiler. The next
step is a highly skilled rating
such as deck engine mechanic, re­
frigerator engineer, or electrician.
In the steward’s department, a
messman or utilityman advances
to third cook, to cook/baker to
chief cook, and finally to chief
steward.
More detailed information on
training, other qualifications, and
advancement appears in the
statements on Licensed Merchant
Marine Officers and Unlicensed
Merchant Seamen.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Except during periods of war
and national emergency, there
has been a long-term decline in
the number of men and vessels
engaged in our merchant marine.
Unless considerable reorientation
takes place in our Nation’s mer­
chant marine policy, more of the
same is expected during the dec­
ade ahead.
Because of substantially higher
shipbuilding and manning costs,
our merchant fleet finds that
competing in the intensive world­
wide shipping market is difficult.
T o insure that our country has a
merchant fleet operating in regu­
lar or essential trade routes, the
Government subsidizes about 300
cargo and passenger vessels
(about a third of the active
fleet). Much of the fleet is com­
posed of slow, inefficient ships
of World War II vintage that are
sinking one by one into the sea
of obsolescence.
Whether it is prudent to let
this trend continue is the sub­
ject of much discussion. The Gov­
ernment presently is formulating
a new merchant marine policy
that is expected to define the role
that Federal assistance will play
in the size of tomorrow’s fleet. The
future of our merchant marine
rests with this policy.

Radical new concepts that
could dramatically cut shipping
costs on some items and improve
our competitive position are pres­
ently in the testing stage. For ex­
ample, surface-effect ships that
glide on or just above the water
are capable of speeds 5 times
those of most modern cargo ships.
Greater application of nuclear
power to merchant shipping is
also on the horizon. But few of
such radical innovations are like­
ly to have a substantial impres­
sion on seaborne trade in the
next decade. Instead present
trends toward greater mechaniza­
tion and automation will con­
tinue.
Future ships will be larger and
faster and will operate with
fewer men. For example, a central
console in the engineroom of the
newest ships controls engines,
boilers,
and most auxiliary
equipment. Data loggers auto­
matically print the performance
of various parts of the systems
such as temperatures and pres­
sures and automated boiler
systems.
The size of the deck crew is
being reduced primarily in the
area of maintenance by improve­
ments such as hydraulically oper­
ated hatch covers, inorganic zinc
coatings that protect metals for
years, and automatic tension
mooring winches that assist in
docking and undocking. Eventu­
ally a “ lookout” device is foreseen
that not only will warn of a col­
lision but also will automatically
adjust the course to avoid
a crash. Improved efficiency on
our newest ship already has cut
11 to 14 men from conventional
manning requirements of about
55; still further reductions are
likely.
Widespread unemployment is
not necessarily a corollary to
these reductions in manpower
needs. For one thing, the dozen
or so seagoing unions are likely

MERCHANT MARINE OCCUPATIONS

723
across departmental lines, union
jurisdictions, and present work
specialties. Some jobs will be en­
tirely new, and both officers and
unlicensed workers will require a
new inventory of skills to hold
them. For example, experience
gained by standing watch in an
engineroom of a conventional
vessel may be secondary com­
pared with basic courses in elec­
tronics.
In anticipation of this trend,
the U.S. Merchant Marine Acad­
emy now selects 10 percent of
the approximately 300 men who
enter the academy each year to
be trained as “ omnicompetent”
officers. They are taught both
navigational and technical skills
so they can work in either de­
partment.

Earnings and W orking C onditions

to resist substantial cuts in the
size of crews. Further, many sea­
men began their careers when our
fleet was built during World War
II. This older work force, in con­
junction with liberalized pension
provisions and normally high de­
parture rates for shore jobs, is
expected to result in a large out­
flow of seamen from the indus­
try during the years ahead.
For less skilled unlicensed po­
sitions, much of the attrition will
be compensated for by declining
manpower needs and upgrading
among the abundance of men in
the lower ratings. As more em­
phasis is placed on fewer but
more highly trained men, there
will be very little demand for
unskilled men in the entry jobs.
The employment outlook for
officers is somewhat brighter.
They are among the older work­




ers in the merchant marine, and
replacements are restricted by
the limited training facilities
presently available. Even assum­
ing a smaller officer corps a dec­
ade from today, more than 1,000
employment opportunities are ex­
pected each year for academy
graduates (who presently number
about 600 a year) and those who
work their way up through the
ratings.
Whether an officer’s best pros­
pects lie in the deck or the engi­
neering department is a question
generating
considerable
heat
among the unions representing
these respective workers. It seems
clear, however, that the present
sharp craft line drawn between
deck and engineering jobs will
become blurred. The emphasis
will be on job function; the new­
est automated equipment will cut

Earnings aboard American flag
deep-sea ships are the highest of
any Nation in the world. In few
other industries can an ambitious
man who has a high school edu­
cation or less do so well finan­
cially. An unlicensed seaman who
has advanced a rung or two in
rating can receive base and over­
time earnings of nearly $700 a
month, in addition to free food
and lodging. Most officers earn
over $1,000 a month.
Wages vary not only according
to the job but also by the size
and type of vessel. They are high­
est on multiple-screw passenger
vessels. An outstanding charac­
teristic of the maritime industry
is that base wages represent only
part of the seamen’s take-home
pay. Additional payments for as­
suming extra work or responsi­
bility add as much as 50 percent
to the base wages paid to licensed
and unlicensed seamen. These ad­
ditional payments include over­
time pay, supplemental pay and
so-called “ penalty” pay.

724
Liberal employer-financed pen­
sion and welfare plans are pro­
vided. Today seamen whose va­
cation benefits range from 60 to
over 100 days’ vacation pay may
retire at any age after 20 years
of service, and receive pensions
of $250 per month for unlicensed
seamen and $325 per month for
licensed seamen. All seamen and
dependents are covered by com­
prehensive medical and welfare
benefits. (See statements in Li­
censed Merchant Marine Officers
and Unlicensed Merchant Sea­
men for more information on
earnings).
The workweek for persons em­
ployed aboard ship is consider­
ably different from the workweek
for persons employed on the
shore. At sea, the daily hours of
licensed officers, able and ordi­
nary seamen, firemen/watertenders, oilers, or deck/engine me­
chanics usually employed as
watchstanders
consist
of
3
watches during each 12 hours.
Each watch is 4 hours long and
each man stands 2 watches, 7
days a week. Overtime is paid for
any work over 40 hours a week.
When the ship is in port, the crew
works a 40-hour week, Monday
through Friday.
Working and living conditions
aboard ship have improved over
the years. Mechanization has re­
duced work demands and newer
vessels contain private rooms, airconditioning, television, and ex­
panded recreational facilities.
However, life aboard ship is con­
fining. Although a seaman may
visit many parts of the world, his
shore time may be limited by the
increasingly rapid “ turn-around”
time of modern vessels.
While at sea, crew members
must be able to derive satisfac­
tion from simple pleasures, such
as reading or a chair-side hobby.
Since voyages last several weeks
or months, seamen are away from
home and families for substantial




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

periods of time. Some men tire of
the lengthy separations and
choose shoreside employment.
Others become frustrated by pe­
riods of unemployment. Although
union hiring rules recognize sen­
iority in hiring, a man who has
long years of sea experience does
not have the same degree of job
security often associated with
seniority in shore jobs. Although
available jobs are usually first
offered to workers in the highest
seniority “ level,” employment
within these levels is typically on
a first-come, first-served basis;
and when berths are scarce, the
list of candidates may be long.
The merchant marine has been
called a feast or famine industry.
During
shipping
emergencies
such as the Vietnam conflict,
hundreds of additional ships are
put into service. When shipping
demands recede, the industry fre­
quently has excess shipping ca­
pacity and men. This accounts in
part for the large number of sea­
men whose connection with the
industry is only casual. It also
explains in part why the poten­
tial supply of qualified seamen
almost always exceeds the num­
ber of jobs, and why a person
considering a career at sea can
never be sure of the number of
men with whom he might be com­
peting in the future.
The duties aboard ship are
hazardous relative to other in­
dustries. At sea, there is always
a possibility of injuries from falls
or the danger of fire, collision, or
sinking. In the past, sudden ill­
ness at sea could be extremely
hazardous, but emergency air
service available today reduces
the danger. Despite these draw­
backs, for many men, the spirit
and adventure of the sea; good
wages and living conditions; and
liberal vacation, pension, and
welfare protection, more than
compensate for the disadvantages
of the work.

Sources of A dditional In fo rm atio n
General information about jobs
in the merchant marine may be
obtained from:
Office of Maritime Manpower,
Maritime Administration, U.S.
Department
of
Commerce,
Washington, D.C. 20235.

Information about job open­
ings, qualifications for employ­
ment, wage scales and other par­
ticulars can be obtained from lo­
cal maritime unions. If no sea­
faring union is listed in a local
telephone directory, information
may be obtained from the follow­
ing:
International
Organization of
Masters, Mates and Pilots, 39
Broadway, New York, New
York 10006.
National Marine Engineers’ Bene­
ficial Association, 17 Battery
Place, New York, New York
10004.
National Maritime Union of
America, 36 Seventh Avenue,
New York, New York 10011.

LICENSED MERCHANT
MARINE OFFICERS
N atu re of th e W ork
The Coast Guard licenses
ship’s professional and supervis­
ory personnel consisting of deck,
engine, and radio officers. In
command of every ocean-going
vessel is the captain (D.O.T. 197.168) or master who is the ship­
owner’s sole representative. He is
responsible and has complete au­
thority for the operation of the
ship including discipline and
order, and the safety of the crew,
passengers, cargo, and vessel.
While in port, the captain may
function as the agent for the ship
owners by conferring with custom
officials. In some cases, he may

MERCHANT MARINE OCCUPATIONS

act as paymaster for the ship. Al­
though not technically a member
of a specific department, he gen­
erally is associated with the deck
department, from whose ranks he
was promoted.
Deck Department. Acting un­
der supervision of the master, li­
censed deck officers or “ mates”
as they are traditionally called,
direct the navigation and piloting
of the ship and the maintenance
of the deck and hull. While at sea,
deck officers stand watch, take
navigational observations, and
supervise emergency drills. From
his position on the bridge, the
watchstanding deck officer is re­
sponsible for the ship’s naviga­
tion. American vessels contain the
most modern navigational de­
vices, such as gyrocompass, radar,
sonar, Fathometer, Loran, and
radio directional finders. Deck
officers must be familiar with
these and other instruments as
part of their duties in the safe
and efficient operation and navi­
gation of the ship.
While on duty, the deck officer
maintains the authorized speed
and course; plots the vessel’s po­
sition at frequent intervals; posts
lookouts when required; records
his watch in the ship’s “ log” of
the voyage; and immediately no­
tifies the master of any unusual
occurrences.
Besides acting as watch officer,
each deck officer performs other
duties. The chief mate (D.O.T.
197.133), or first mate or chief
officer, as he is also known, acts
as the captain’s key assistant in
assigning duties to the unlicensed
deck crew, maintaining order and
discipline, and by seeing that the
deck crew, maintaining order and
and orderly. He also plans and
carries out the loading, unload­
ing, and stowing of cargo, and
assists the captain in taking the
ship in and out of port. On some
ships he also may be in charge
of first aid treatment.




Chief mate directs speed and course of
cargo ship from bridge.

By tradition, the second mate
(D.O.T. 197.133) is the navigat­
ing officer. He sees that the ship
is provided with the necessary
navigation charts and that navi­
gating equipment is maintained
properly.
The third mate (D.O.T. 197.133), the most junior-rated deck
officer, is responsible for the care
and the maintenance of the navi­
gating bridge and the chartroom.
He functions as the signal officer
and is in charge of all signaling
equipment and assists in the su­
pervision of cargo loading and
unloading
operations.
Third
mates frequently inspect life
boats and other lifesaving equip­

725
ment to be sure they are ready
to use for a fire, shipwreck, or
other emergency.
Engine Department. A ship is
equivalent to a self-contained sea­
going city, because it manufac­
tures its own lights, water, and
power. Marine engineers operate
and maintain all engines and ma­
chinery aboard the ship. The chief
engineer (D.O.T. 197.130) who
supervises the engine department,
is responsible for the operating
efficiency of engines and for all
other mechanical equipment. He
oversees the operation of the main
power plant and auxiliary equip­
ment while the vessel is under­
way and is responsible for the log
of equipment performance and
fuel consumption.
The first assistant engineer
(D.O.T. 197.130), supervises en­
gine room personnel and directs
operations such as starting, stop­
ping, and controlling the speed
of the main engines. He oversees
and inspects the lubrication of
engines, pumps, electric motors
and generators, and other ma­
chinery; directs the installation of
steam and water pipes and elec­
tric wiring; and with the aid of
the chief engineer directs all
types of repairs.
As with the deck department,
the engineroom is operated on a
24-hour basis and officers are as­
signed watch periods. The chief
engineer and/or first assistant
engineer appoints the second as­
sistant engineer and two of the
third assistant engineers to a
watch period during which they
are responsible for the operation
of the ship’s propulsion plant and
auxiliary machinery and the su­
pervision of unlicensed engine de­
partment personnel. Marine engi­
neers on watch must notify the
chief engineer of any unusual
occurrence and keep a record of
equipment performance.
Each member of the licensed
engineering staff performs spe-

726

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

the extensive paperwork required
to enter and clear a vessel in
each port, prepare payrolls, and
assist passengers as required. In
recent years, the Staff Officers
Association has established a
program designed to train pursers
to act also as Pharmacist Mates.
This instruction would improve
the medical care aboard all dry
cargo and tankers and facilitate
the obtaining of Public Health
clearance when a vessel arrives
in port. All passenger vessels
must carry licensed doctors and
nurses.

Places of E m ploym ent
About 15,000 officers were em­
ployed aboard U.S. Flag ocean­
going vessels during mid-1968. l i ­
censed deck officers and engineer­
ing officers each account for about
two-fifths of total employment.
The remaining one-fifth is made
up of radio and staff officers.

Marine engineer controls running speed of main engine.

cific duties. The second assistant
engineer (D.O.T. 197.130) has
direct charge of the boiler and
associated equipment, such as the
water-feed system, pumps, and
fuel oil heater system. He is re­
sponsible for the maintenance of
proper steam pressure and oil and
water temperatures. He super­
vises the cleaning of the boilers
and is usually responsible for
their operation and the operation
of the steam generator.
The third assistant engineer
(D.O.T. 197.130) supervises the
operation and maintenance of the
lubrication system and engineroom auxiliaries. At least one
third assistant engineer is em­
ployed as a day man (nonwatchstander) and is responsible for
the electrical and/or refrigeration




systems aboard ship.
Other officers. A ship main­
tains contact with shore and
other vessels through its radio
officer (D.O.T. 193.282), who is
also responsible for maintaining
this equipment. A passenger ship
carries three to six operators; the
average cargo vessel employs one.
He sends and receives messages
by voice or Morse code. He peri­
odically receives and records time
signals, weather reports, position
reports, and other navigation and
technical data. The radio opera­
tor may also maintain depth re­
cording equipment and electron­
ic navigation machinery.
Some cargo and tanker vessels
and all passenger vessels carry
pursers (D.O.T. 197.168). The
purser or staff officer performs

T rain in g , O th er Q ualificatio ns,
and A dvancem ent
Persons applying for the first
time for an officer’s license in the
deck and engineering depart­
ments of oceangoing vessels must
meet certain major legal require­
ments. Masters, chief and second
mates, chief and first assistant
engineers are required to be at
least 21 years of age. The mini­
mum age for third mates, third
assistant engineers, and radio op­
erators is 19. In addition, appli­
cants must present documentary
proof of United States citizenship
and obtain a U.S. Public Health
Service certificate attesting to
their vision, color perception, and
general physical condition.
In addition to legal and medi­
cal requirements, candidates for
deck officer rating must pass
Coast Guard examinations that

MERCHANT MARINE OCCUPATIONS

require extensive knowledge of
seamanship, navigation, cargo
handling, and the operations of
the deck department in all its
phases. Marine engineering offi­
cer candidates must demonstrate
in-depth knowledge of propulsion
systems, electricity, plumbing
and steam fitting, metal shaping
and assembly, and ship structure.
T o progress to a higher rating,
officers are required to complete
successfully their examinations.
For a Coast Guard license as
a radio officer, applicants must
have a first or second-class radio­
telegraph operator’s license is­
sued by the Federal Communi­
cations Commission. For a license
to serve as the sole radio op­
erator aboard a cargo vessel, the
Coast Guard also requires 6
months of radio experience at
sea.
Unlike most professions, no
educational requirements have
been established to become a
merchant marine officer. Anyone
who has served for 3 years in the
deck or engine department may
apply for either a third mate’s
license or for a third assistant
engineer’s license. However, the
complex machinery, navigational,
and electronic equipment on
modem vessels require that offi­
cers have extensive technical
knowledge.
T o pass the Coast Guard’s ex­
amination for an officers’ license
generally requires formal train­
ing. The fastest and surest way
to become a well-trained officer
is through an established officer
training program. Such training
programs are available at the
U.S. Merchant Marine Academy
at Kings Point, New York and at
five State merchant marine aca­
demies: California Maritime Aca­
demy, Vallejo, Calif.; Maine
M aritim e A cadem y, Castine,
Maine; Massachusetts Maritime
Academy, Hyannis, Mass.; Texas
Maritime Academy, Galveston,




Tex.; and New York Maritime
College, Fort Schuyler, New York,
N.Y. Approximately 600 students
graduate each year from the six
schools; about one-half are trained
as deck officers and one-half as
marine engineers. Entrance re­
quirements for each of the acad­
emies are very high. Admission to
the Federal academy is through
nomination by a member of Con­
gress, whereas entrance to the
other academies is made through
written application directly to the
school.
Each of the academies offers
3- or 4-year courses in nautical
science or marine engineering, as
well as practical experience at
sea. Subjects include navigation,
mathematics, electronics, sea­
manship, propulsion systems,
electrical engineering, languages,
history, and shipping manage­
ment. Each student receives a
subsistence allowance and a
bachelor of science degree upon
graduation. After Coast Guard
examinations are passed, licenses
are issued for either third mate
or third assistant engineer. In
addition, graduates may receive
commissions as ensigns in the
U.S. Naval Reserve.
Because of their thorough
grounding in theory and its prac­
tical application, academy gradu­
ates are in the best position to
move up to master and chief en­
gineer ratings. Their well-round­
ed education also qualifies them
for shoreside jobs such as marine
superintendent, operating man­
ager, or shipping executive.
A number of trade unions in
the maritime industry provide of­
ficer training. These unions in­
clude the International Organi­
zation of Masters, Mates and Pi­
lots; the Seafarers’ International
Union; the Brotherhood of Ma­
rine Officers, and the National
Marine Engineers’ Beneficial As­
sociation. Most union programs
are designed to upgrade unli­

727
censed seamen to the licensed
ratings although some programs
accept inexperienced young men.
For example, the National Ma­
rine Engineers’ Beneficial Asso­
ciation (M EBA) District 1-Pa­
cific Coast District operates the
Calhoon
M EBA
Engineering
School in Baltimore, Maryland,
which offers high school gradu­
ates a 2-year apprenticeship
training program in preparation
for a third assistant engineer’s
license. The program consists of
both classroom instruction and
sea experience and provides free
room, board, medical care, and
text books in addition to a
monthly grant. Trainees must
agree to serve at least three years
in the U.S. Merchant Marine
after the 2-year training period.
Advancement for deck and en­
gine officers is along well-defined
lines and depends primarily upon
specified sea experience, passing
a Coast Guard examination, and
leadership ability. Deck officers
start as third mates. After 1
year’s service they are eligible to
take a second mate examination.
To rise to chief mate, a candi­
date must have served as second
mate at least 1 year or 2 years
as a watch officer while holding
a license as a second mate. The
chief mate may apply for mas­
ter’s license after 1 year of serv­
ice, or after 2 years of service as
second mate while holding a chief
mate’s license. An officer in the
engine department starts as third
assistant engineer. After 1 year
of service, he may apply for a
second assistant’s license. After
further experience, he may apply
for first assistant’s license and
finally a chief engineer’s license.

Em ploym ent O utlook
Employment of ship officers is
expected to decline moderately
during the 1970’s. However, be-

728

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

Licensed officers and their de­
pendents enjoy substantial bene­
fits from noncontributory pen­
sion and welfare plans. For ex­
ample, licensed deck officers are
eligible for a monthly pension
of $325 after 20 years of serv­
ice, and up to one-half their
monthly rate after 25 years of
service. Partial pensions are pro­
vided for those men forced to
retire prematurely due to a per­
manent disability. Comprehen­
sive medical care and hospitaliza­
tion are provided licensed officers
and their families through union
programs.
While at sea, officers stand
two watches each day. In port,
the normal workday is from 8
a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through
Friday. Aboard the ship, each
officer has a private room with
Earnings and W orking Conditions
hot and cold running water. He
dines with fellow officers in a
The level of wages paid to of­ dining salon separate from the
ficers depends upon rank and the messhall in which unlicensed
size and type of vessel. Wages
crewmen eat. A bedroom steward
are highest on multiple-screw
cleans his room each morning.
passenger vessels. The accom­
A number of labor organiza­
panying tabulation shows month­
tions represent merchant marine
ly base wages for officers aboard
officers. The two largest are the
an average freighter. Additional
International Organization of
payments for overtime, supple­ Masters, Mates and Pilots repre­
mental pay and “ penalty pay”
senting deck officers and the Na­
generally average about 50 per­ tional Marine Engineers’ Bene­
cent of base pay. A monthly sum ficial Association representing en­
in lieu of overtime is paid to gineering officers. Licensed un­
master, chief mate, chief engineer
ions for Officers may require initi­
and first and third assistant en­
ation fees as high as $1,000.
gineers who do not stand watch.
The Brotherhood of Marine
In 1968, this was equal to $218.40 Officers represents licensed deck
per month.
and engine personnel on about 70
vessels. The Staff Officers Asso­
Base p a y 1
ciation represents pursers on all
Master......................................... $1,821
Atlantic and Gulf Coast passen­
First mate................................... 1,102
ger vessels and certain freight
Second mate .............................. 780
Third mate.................................. 720
ships. Radio officers are repre­
Radio officer .............................. 884
sented by the American Radio
656
Purser ......................................... 2
Association and the Radio Offi­
Chief engineer............................ 1,696
cers Union. In addition, a num­
First assistant engineer............ 1,102
Second assistantengineer.................... 780 ber of independent unions repre­
Third assistant engineer..................... 720 sent licensed and/or unlicensed
'East Coast wages in August 1968 aboard a
personnel on tanker vessels.
12,000-17,000 power ton single screw ship.
(See introductory statement
“Purser/pharmacist mate, $806.

cause pensions are improved and
the average age of officers is high,
a few thousand replacements will
be needed each year. Other offi­
cers are expected to quit the sea
for shore-side employment. The
primary factors responsible for
the expected decline are the con­
tinued decline in the absolute
size of the fleet and the smaller
crew sizes required because of
mechanization. The level of em­
ployment of licensed officers in
the industry in the final analysis
will depend upon government
policy with respect to a vessel
replacement program and its de­
termination of the level of U.S.
flag participation in the U.S. wa­
ter-borne foreign commerce.




on Merchant Marine Occupations
for additional information on
earnings and working conditions
and for sources of additional in­
formation.)

UNLICENSED MERCHANT
SEAMEN
N atu re of th e W ork
Unlicensed seamen make up
most of a ship’s crew and per­
form most of the manual labor
aboard ship. Employment is
along craft lines with varying de­
grees of skill levels and includes
the following departments: Deck,
engine, and steward’s depart­
ment.

DECK DEPARTMENT. Or­
dinary Seamen (D.O.T. 911.887), the entry rating in the deck
department,
perform
general
deck maintenance work such as
scrubbing decks, coiling and
splicing ropes, chipping rust, and
painting. Aboard ship, they may
perform other types of general
maintenance work including the
cleaning of the quarters of the
unlicensed personnel of the deck
department. Ordinary seamen
also may “ spell” (relieve) the
helmsman and lookout. All dry
cargo and tanker vessels employ
three ordinary seamen; each man
is assigned a watch at sea.
Able Seamen (D.O.T. 911.884)
or A.B.’s constitute about onefifth of the unlicensed crew. All
dry cargo and tanker vessels have
aboard six A.B.’s, two of whom
are assigned to each watch. These
skilled workers must have a
thorough knowledge of all parts
of the vessel and be able to han­
dle all gear and deck equipment.
They act as helmsmen or quarter­
masters to steer the ship. Usu­
ally, A.B.’s each take 2 hours
turns at the wheel, and as look­
outs report sightings to the watch

729

MERCHANT MARINE OCCUPATIONS

methods of fire prevention and
control. They participate in peri­
odic boat drills and are trained
in all operations connected with
launching lifeboats and life rafts,
and handling of the boats and
commanding boat crews.

The boatswain (D.O.T. 911.131), or bosun, is a day worker
(nonwatchstander) and the high­
est ranking able seaman. As fore­
man in charge of the deck crew
he relays the deck officers’ orders
and sees that such orders are
executed. The boatswain assists
the chief mate in assigning work
for crew members not on watch
duty and directs general mainte­
nance operations such as clean­
ing decks, polishing metalwork,
and maintaining lifeboats. When
the ship docks or anchors, he
supervises the deck crew in han­
dling the lines used for mooring.
Most cargo vessels carry one to
three deck utility men (D.O.T.
911.884), day workers who main­
tain the deck department under
the direct supervision of the
boatswain. Deck utilitymen must
be able seamen in qualifications
and Coast Guard endorsement so
that in emergencies they may
stand A.B.’s watch. Their work
includes determining the con­
dition of bilges (compartments
in the bottom of the hull), over­
haul of blocks, and general main­
tenance work.
Some vessels carry a ship’s
(D.O.T.
860.281)
whose duties include securing
cargo hatches and ports, bracing
(shoring) cargo, and maintain­
ing water-tight integrity of the
ship. He may operate winches
that hoist and drop the anchor
and seal the hawsepipes (steel
pipes through which anchor
chains pass) when anchor and
chains are not in use. Because of
mechanization, newer vessels are
sailing with fewer carpenters and
deck utilitymen.

carpenter

Seamen secure anchor chain for sea voyage.

officer. Able seamen on passenger
ships perform many of the same
functions as able seamen on
cargo vessels.
Able seamen are also respon­
sible for rigging, overhauling, and
stowing cargo-handling and other
gear. They must be able to tie
common knots and handle moor­




ing lines when the ship is dock­
ing or departing. In addition to
their more skilled tasks, A.B.’s
perform general deck mainte­
nance work similar to that per­
formed by ordinary seamen.
Because of the ever-present
danger of fire at sea, able seamen
must be familiar with approved

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

730

ENGINE

DEPARTMENT.

The unlicensed engineering staff
consists of a variety of occupa­
tional specialties requiring vary­
ing degrees of skill from the en­
try rating of wiper to specialized
skilled jobs such as reefer en­
gineer. Wipers (D.O.T. 699.887),
are day workers and are respon­
sible for keeping the engine room
and machinery clean. Most cargo
vessels carry two or three wipers.
Oilers (D.O.T. 911.884) lubricate
moving parts or wearing surfaces
of mechanical equipment. They
make regular rounds of ship ma­
chinery to check oil pressures
and flow. They inspect the ma­
chinery for overheating, fuel sup­
ply, and apply proper grades of
grease or oil to all ship machin­
ery. Oilers may help the engineer
in charge to overhaul and repair
main and auxiliary engines. Fire­
men/watertenders (D.O.T. 951.885) check and regulate the
amount of water in the boilers;
inspect gauges; regulate fuel oil
gauges to keep steam pressure
constant; and change and clean
burner nozzles. They also check
the operation of evaporators and
condensers and test water for
salt control, check fuel boilers;
clean oil burning equipment; re­
move, clean, and replace burners;
and clean strainers used to filter
dirt from oil before use in the
burners.
The ship’s electrician (D.O.T.
825.281) takes orders from the
chief engineer. He keeps the
electrical equipment in good re­
pair. He tests electrical equip­
ment; repairs defective electrical
systems; oils and greases winches;
and changes oil in casings. Many
vessels carry a second electrician
to maintain and repair electrical
equipment and machinery.
All automated vessels carry
deck-engine mechanics of whom
one usually is classified as a day
worker and three, as watchstanders. These jobs combine




the work of the unlicensed junior
engineers and electricians and
require higher skills than the
oilers and firemen-watertenders
on conventional vessels whom
they replace. Certain types of
ships require special skills, such
as reefer engineers (D.O.T. 950.782) who operate refrigerator
compartments for perishable car­
goes such as meat and vegetables.

S T E W A R D ’ S DEPART­
MENT. The steward’s depart­
ment does not include licensed
officers. However, its members
vary from stewards to unskilled
utility men. The chief steward
(D.O.T. 350.138) supervises the
operation and maintenance of the
living quarters of officers, crew,
and passengers. He directs and
supervises all the department’s
personnel, orders and purchases
food supplies, inspects and stores
supplies, and supervises the prep­
aration and serving of meals and
the care and upkeep of living
quarters. The chief cook (D.O.T.
315.131) and assistant cooks pre­
pare the meals aboard ship. The
chief cook helps the steward plan
and prepare the meals and draw
pantry supplies from the store­
room. He also supervises the
other galley (ship’s kitchen)
workers and is responsible for
keeping the galley clean and
orderly. The cook/baker (D.O.T.
315.381) assists the chief cook
and also acts as the ship’s baker.
Utility men (D.O.T. 318.887) and
messmen (D.O.T. 350.878 com­
plete the crew in the steward’s
department. These beginning
jobs require little skill. General­
ly, utility men carry food sup­
plies from the storeroom and ice­
boxes; prepare vegetables; wash
cooking utensils and scour galley
equipment; whereas messmen set
tables, serve meals, clean off ta­
bles, wash dishes, and care for
living quarters.

Places of Em ploym ent
Unlicensed seamen employed
aboard U.S. oceangoing vessels
numbered about 45,000 in mid1968. About 2 out of every
3 were aboard dry cargo ves­
sels. Skilled deck and engine sea­
men made up about one-half of
the unlicensed work force and
skilled personnel in the steward’s
department, one-sixth. The stew­
ard’s department employs the
greatest concentration of un­
skilled workers, about one-fifth of
unlicensed seamen.

T rain in g , O ther Q ualifications,
and A dvancem ent
Although not required, previ­
ous sea experience in the Coast
Guard or Navy is a good back­
ground to enter the merchant
marine. Applicants for work must
possess health certificates. In ad­
dition, every person going to
sea for the first time in a job
or “ rating” that does not require
a license must obtain seaman’s
papers from the United States
Coast Guard. Seaman’s papers
do not guarantee a job. They
merely qualify a person to be
considered for a job when the
supply of regular workers and
newcomers registering earlier has
been exhausted. To get a job, a
man must be present at the hir­
ing hall when the opening be­
comes available. In good shipping
times an opening may come with­
in a few days, or a month or
more; in less prosperous times, a
berth may never appear.
An inexperienced man usually
gets a job on a ship by applying
for work at a central hiring hall
in one of the chief ports of the
country. These hiring halls are
operated by unions for commer­
cial vessels and by the Navy’s
Military Sea Transportation Serv­
ice MSTS for government oper-

731

MERCHANT MARINE OCCUPATIONS

ated ships. In most ports along
the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts and
Great Lakes, the National Mari­
time Union or Seafarers’ Interna­
tional Union operate hiring halls.
The Sailors Union of the Pacific
operates hiring halls in many
ports of the West Coast. MSTS
employment offices are located
at Brooklyn, N .Y.; New Orleans,
La.; and Oakland, Calif.
The job seeker is given a ship­
ping card when he registers at
the hiring hall. The shipping
companies send job orders to the
hiring hall and the applicant un­
employed the longest is entitled
to the first preference on a job
for which he is qualified. The
applicant must be present at the
hall when the job is announced
and he may lose his place if he is
not present or has turned down
three job offers. Upon accepting
a job, the applicant presents an
assignment slip to the shipping
company.
A seaman advances in the deck
and engine departments by serv­
ing a designated period in a rat­
ing and by successfully complet­
ing a Coast Guard examination
which tests the seaman’s ability
to use and maintain the equip­
ment in his department. Forexample, after serving a minimum
of one year, the ordinary seaman
may apply to the Coast Guard for
a limited endorsement to his mer­
chant mariner’s document as able
seamen. For full endorsement for
a Coast Guard A.B. ticket, the
seaman. For full endorsement for
T o obtain the endorsement, the
applicant must be 19 years of
age and pass an examination de­
signed to test his knowledge of
seamanship and ability to carry
out all the duties required of an
able seaman. Upon obtaining an
A.B. ticket, a seaman may serve
in any unlicensed rating in the
deck department.
Unlicensed
seamen who have the ability to
supervise may advance to boat­




swain after years of sea service.
Advancement to higher positions
in the steward’s department is
by recommendation of the chief
steward to the master.
Most training programs in the
industry assist workers already
in the industry to upgrade their
ratings. However, the Seafarers’
International Union of North
America operates the Harry Lundeberg School for seamanship at
Piney Point, Md. that accepts
and trains in general seaman­
ship skills a limited number
of young men who have no pre­
vious sea experience. Upgrading
courses for seamen are offered
by the Seafarers’ Union; the
National Maritime Union of
America, and a number of other
organizations.

Marine Occupations for addition­
al information on technological
changes.)

Earnings and W orking Conditions
Crew members of American
merchant ships enjoy excellent
pay, subsistence, and working
conditions. Most jobs provide 60
days paid vacation each year,
some even longer. Earnings of
unlicensed seamen depend on
their job assignments and the
type of vessel on which they are
employed. Basic monthly pay for
a cross section of unlicensed rat­
ings on a typical freighter is il­
lustrated in the accompanying
tabulation:
Base Pay1

Em ploym ent O utlook

Workers seeking employment
as unlicensed seamen will face
keen competition during the
1970’s as the total number of
ships decline and m a n n i n g
crews are reduced. The total
number of seamen is expected to
decline moderately. Demand for
men in entry ratings will be
especially limited. However, some
berths will be available each year
as seamen die, retire, or quit the
sea for other reasons.
Many of the merchant vessels
now operating in the U.S. fleet
are of World War II vintage and
are approaching obsolescense. Re­
placements for these vessels and
ships being refitted are equipped
with mechanized features which
limit the manpower requirements
for unlicensed personnel, particu­
larly in the unskilled ranks. (See
employment outlook section of
introductory section Merchant

Able seaman ..........................
Ordinary seaman ..................
Deck utilityman......................
Carpenter ................................
Electrician ..............................
Oiler.........................................
Fireman/watertender ...........
Wiper .....................................
Chief steward..........................
Cook/baker..............................
Messman/utilityman ............

$444
346
496
536
686
444
444
412
583
505
344

1East Coast wages in August 1968 aboard a
12,000-17,000 power ton single screw ship.

Monthly earnings are supple­
mented by premium pay for over­
time and other factors. On the
average, premium earnings are
equal to about 50 percent of base
wages. For example, an oiler with
a monthly base pay of $444 may
regularly earn about $665 each
month.
Working conditions for seamen
aboard U.S. merchant vessels are
generally good, but not luxurious.
Meals are served in a mess hall,
which often doubles as a recre­
ation room where the crew can
read, write letters, play cards,
and socialize. Crewmen generally
share quarters with other men
and have little privacy.
Unlicensed seamen are repre-

732
sented by a number of labor
organizations; the two largest are
the National Maritime Union of
America and the Seafarers’ In­




OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

ternational Union of North
America.
(See introduction statement on
Merchant Marine Occupations

for additional information on
earnings and working conditions
and for sources of additional in­
formation).

R A D IO A N D T E L E V IS IO N
B R O A D C A S T IN G O C C U P A T IO N S

The glamor and excitement as­
sociated with radio and television
make careers in broadcasting at­
tractive to many young people.
The electronic technology in­
volved in transmitting programs
and the business aspects of op­
erating a broadcasting station or
network also are attractions. In
1968, about 105,000 full-time and
25,000 part-time staff were em­
ployed in commercial broadcast­
ing; altogether, over 55 percent
were employed in radio. Staff
employees work for a broad­
casting station or network on
a regularly scheduled and con­
tinuous basis. In addition to staff
employees, several thousand free­
lance performers, such as actors,
musicians, dancers, comedians,
and top-level announcers work
on specific assignments from sta­
tions, networks, and other pro­
gram producers. (Several thou­
sand other employees work for
independent program producers
in activities closely related to
broadcasting, such as the prepara­
tion of filmed and taped programs
and commercials for broadcast­
ing.)
Women make up almost a
fourth of broadcasting staff em­
ployment. They frequently work
as production assistants, produc­
ers, newswriters, continuity writ­
ers, casting directors, costume or
set designers, and supervisors of
religious and children’s programs.
They also work in the many of­
fice occupations often filled by
women. A job as secretary is fre­
quently a good entry job for
women interested in the program­
ing and administrative areas of
broadcasting.
Broadcasting stations offer a
variety of interesting jobs in all
parts of the country. Opportuni­
ties for entry jobs are best at sta­




tions in small communities. Gen­
erally, the most specialized and
best paying jobs are in large cit­
ies, especially those with national
network stations. Neverthless,
the talented individual will have
many opportunities to advance
to good paying jobs in stations
located in smaller communities.

N ature and Location of the
Industry
In early 1969, about 6,200 com­
mercial radio stations were in op­
eration in the United States. Of
these, approximately 4,200 were
AM stations; and approximately
2,000 were FM stations.
During this same period, about
678 commercial television sta­
tions were in operation. Of these,
about 3 out of every 4 were VHF
stations. UHF stations generally
employ fewer workers than VHF
stations.
Most commercial radio broad­
casting stations are small, inde­
pendent businesses. In early
1968, the average AM and AMFM radio station had about 11
full-time employees and 4 parttime workers. Television stations
were generally larger, and on the
average, they employed about 50
full-time and 8 part-time em­
ployees.
Commercial radio stations are
served by four nationwide net­
works and a large number of re­
gional networks. Stations can af­
filiate with networks by agreeing
to broadcast their programs on a
regular basis. National radio net­
works have affiliated stations in
almost every large metropolitan
area, although only a minority of
all radio stations are affiliated
with national networks. Regional
radio networks have fewer affili­

ated stations, and their activities
usually consist of arranging for
the sale of advertising time, and
interconnecting member stations
for special events such as base­
ball and football games. Regional
networks have few full-time em­
ployees because their programing
is conducted by staff employees of
the affiliated stations. The four
national radio n e t w o r k s , to­
gether employed over 2,500
workers in early 1968.
Most television stations depend
on one or more of the three na­
tional television networks for pro­
grams that would be too expen­
sive for individual stations to
originate— for example, sports
events such as world series base­
ball games or international Olym­
pic contests; broadcasts of op­
eras, plays, and musicals; and
newscasts of national and inter­
national significance. These net­
works, in turn, can offer national
coverage to advertisers. Since
some small cities have only one
or two television stations, these
stations often carry the programs
of two or three networks to offer
their viewers a wider variety of
programs. A typical network tele­
vision show may be carried by up
to 200 stations across the coun­
try. In early 1968, the three na­
tional television networks em­
ployed over 15,000 workers, or 3
of every 10 staff employees in
television.
One-third of all radio stations
are located in communities which
have a population of less than
10,000, and most of these are in
one-station communities. Gener­
ally, television stations are lo­
cated in communities of more
than 25,000 population. About
three-fourths of all television sta­
tions are in communities of
100.000 or more. In contrast, over
60 percent of all radio stations
are in communities of less than
100.000 population. Practically
all large broadcasting stations are
located in metropolitan areas, but
small stations are found in big cit733

OCCUPATIONAL OUTLOOK HANDBOOK

734
ies as well as small communities.
About one out of four broadcast­
ing jobs are in New York and Cali­
fornia because New York City
and Los Angeles are the two ma­
jor centers for origination of net­
work programs. In addition, one
out of three broadcasting jobs
are in Texas, Pennsylvania, Ohio,
Illinois, Florida, North Carolina,
Michigan, Tennessee, Georgia,
and Virginia. The balance of
broadcasting jobs are distributed
throughout the other states.
In addition to commercial
broadcasting stations, there were
over 350 noncommercial radio
stations (mainly F M ), and ap­
proximately 180 noncommercial
television stations, both VHF
and UHF, in early 1969. These
stations are operated by non­
profit organizations, principally
educational agencies such as
State commissions; local boards
of education; colleges and uni­
versities; and special community
educational television organiza­
tions. Relatively few full-time
staff members were employed in
educational radio and television
stations; instructors and students
often help to operate many of
these stations, especially those
located on college campuses.

B roadcasting O ccupations
Employees of broadcasting sta­
tions generally specialize in 1 of
4 major areas of work. Those
concerned with programing pre­
pare and produce programs; engi­
neering workers operate and
maintain the equipment that con­
verts sounds and pictures into
electronic impulses that can be
picked up on home receivers;
sales workers sell time to adver­
tisers and develop publicity and
promotional material for the sta­
tion. The remaining employees
handle general business matters,
such as accounting, payroll, pub­




lic relations, personnel adminis­
tration, and the clerical work
related to all the station’s ac­
tivities.
Nearly half of all staff em­
ployees in broadcasting hold pro­
fessional and technical jobs such
as staff announcer, newsman,
continuity writer, or broadcast
technician.
About one-fourth
hold managerial or proprietary
jobs such as producer, manager,
or director. Clerical workers ac­
counted for about 1 of every 7
workers, and sales workers for
only slightly more than 1 of every
20 jobs in broadcasting. Of the
remaining workers in broadcast­
ing, skilled mechanics, such as
radio and television repairmen,
and skilled maintenance person­
nel, such as carpenters and elec­
tricians, were the largest groups
of workers employed.
Job duties vary greatly be­
tween small and large stations. In
small radio stations, a large pro­
portion of broadcast time con­
sists of recorded music and
weather and news announce­
ments. As a result, small stations
employ only a few workers, each

of whom performs a variety of
tasks. The station manager, who
frequently is also the owner, may
act as business and sales man­
ager, or perhaps as program di­
rector, announcer, and copywrit­
er. Announcers in small stations
may do their own writing, often
operate the studio control board,
and may even act as salesmen.
The engineering staff may con­
sist of only one full-time broad­
cast technician assisted by work­
ers from the other departments.
Small low-powered stations, which
do not use a directional antenna,
may employ a chief engineer
part-time and share his services
with similar stations in the com­
munity. In large radio and tele­
vision stations, jobs are more
specialized and usually are con­
fined to 1 of the 4 departments.
The kinds of jobs found in each
of these departments are de­
scribed below.
Programing Department. The
programing department plans,
prepares, and produces radio and
television programs. Staff em­
ployees plan the station’s pro­
graming, produce the daily and


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