Machinists and machining and tooling inspectors (NOC 7231)

Occupation targeted by the Workplace Apprenticeship Program

Please note that detailed information for each of the occupations under the Workplace Apprenticeship Program is only available in French.

Job titles

  • aircraft engine parts machinist
  • aircraft machinist
  • apprentice automotive machinist
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Nature of work

Machinists set up and operate a variety of machine tools to cut or grind metal, plastic or other materials to make or modify parts or products with precise dimensions. Machining and tooling inspectors inspect machined parts and tooling in order to maintain quality control standards. They are employed by machinery, equipment, motor vehicle, automotive parts, aircraft and other metal products manufacturing companies and by machine shops.

Fields of interest

  • Carrying out tests or trials, process control
  • Crunching numbers
  • Making or building things, constructing, doing repairs, and performing installations

Main duties

  • Machinists perform some or all of the following duties:
  • - Read and interpret engineering drawings, blueprints, charts and tables or study sample parts to determine machining operation to be performed, and plan best sequence of operations
  • - Compute dimensions and tolerances and measure and lay out work pieces
  • - Set up, operate and maintain a variety of machine tools including computer numerically controlled (CNC) tools to perform precision, non-repetitive machining operations such as sawing, turning, milling, boring, planing, drilling, precision grinding and other operations
  • - Fit and assemble machined metal parts and subassemblies using hand and power tools
  • - Verify dimensions of products for accuracy and conformance to specifications using precision measuring instruments
  • - May set up and program machine tools for use by machining tool operators.
  • Machining and tooling inspectors perform some or all of the following duties:
  • - Verify dimensions of machined parts or tooling using micrometers, verniers, callipers, height gauges, optical comparators, co-ordinate measuring machines (CMM) or other specialized measuring instruments
  • - Maintain, repair and calibrate precision measuring instruments such as dial indicators, fixed gauges, height gauges and other measuring devices
  • - Report deviations from specifications and tolerances to supervisor
  • - Complete and maintain inspection reports.

Main characteristics of the occupation

Employment requirements

  • * Completion of secondary school is usually required.
  • * Completion of a four-year apprenticeship program or A combination of over four years of work experience in the trade and some college or industry courses in machining is usually required to be eligible for trade certification.
  • * Trade certification for machinists is available, but voluntary, in all provinces and territories.
  • * Trade certification for automotive machinists is available, but voluntary, in Ontario.
  • * Trade certification for machinists (CNC) is available, but voluntary, in New Brunswick, Québec and Manitoba.
  • * Several years of experience as a machinist, tool and die maker or machining tool operator may be required for machining and tooling inspectors.
  • * Red Seal endorsement is also available to qualified machinists upon successful completion of the interprovincial Red Seal examination.

Skill type

  • Trades, transport and equipment operators and related occupations

Skill level

  • Technical

More information

  • * Familiarity with exotic and composite materials may be required for machinists in aviation and other advanced manufacturing sectors.
  • * The Red Seal endorsement allows for interprovincial mobility. Additional information from Emploi-Québec: Under the Agreement on Internal Trade, a worker holding certification in a regulated trade has access to interprovincial labour mobility, whether or not the worker’s certification bears a Red Seal endorsement.
  • * Progression to supervisory positions is possible with experience.