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Sawing Machine Worker  What They Do

Just the Facts


Sets up, operates, or tends wood sawing machines. May operate CNC equipment.

This career is part of the Manufacturing cluster Manufacturing Production pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Inspects and measures workpieces to mark for cuts and to verify the accuracy of cuts, using rulers, squares, or caliper rules.
  • Adjusts saw blades, using wrenches and rulers, or by turning handwheels or pressing pedals, levers, or panel buttons.
  • Mounts and bolts sawing blades or attachments to machine shafts.
  • Sets up, operates, or tends saws or machines that cut or trim wood to specified dimensions, such as circular saws, band saws, multiple-blade sawing machines, scroll saws, ripsaws, or crozer machines.
  • Inspects stock for imperfections or to estimate grades or qualities of stock or workpieces.
  • Monitors sawing machines, adjusting speed and tension and clearing jams to ensure proper operation.
  • Sharpens blades or replaces defective or worn blades or bands, using hand tools.
  • Guides workpieces against saws, saws over workpieces by hand, or operates automatic feeding devices to guide cuts.
  • Clears machine jams, using hand tools.
  • Lubricates or cleans machines, using wrenches, grease guns, or solvents.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 20 lbs., sometimes up to 50 lbs. You might do a lot of lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling.
  • Work in this occupation involves bending or twisting your body more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Conditions are very hot (above 90 F) or very cold (under 32 F)
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Exposed to hazardous equipment such as saws, machinery, or vehicular traffic more than once a month
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation involves making repetitive motions more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves walking or running more than one-third of the time

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Judging how far away an object is, or which of several objects is closer or farther away
  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Exerting oneself physically over long periods of time without getting out of breath
  • Lifting, pushing, pulling, or carrying objects
  • Using abdominal and lower back muscles repeatedly or over time without tiring

Work Hours and Travel

  • Regular working hours and limited travel

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Buzzsaw Operator -- Tends circular cutoff saw that custom cuts fireplace and stove fuel wood from random lengths of wood.
  • Crozer -- Operates crozer machine to cut croze (groove) in wooden tank staves, into which tank bottom is fitted.
  • Cut Off Worker -- Operates one or more single- or multiple-blade circular saws to cut wood and wood products to specified lengths.
  • Lather -- Installs support framework for ceiling systems, interior and exterior walls and building partitions.
  • Planer -- Sets up and operates power-fed facer or planer machine to surface and size woodstock used in furniture production.
  • Slasher Operator -- Tends bank of circular saws that saw logs, slabs, or scrap wood into pieces for fuel or processing into pulp.
  • Tenon Machine Operator -- Sets up and operates single- or double-end machine to cut tenons, or to size, trim, groove, shape, or match ends of woodstock used in furniture manufacture.
  • Veneer Cutter -- Tends drop-knife clipping machine that cuts veneer sheets to specified size and cuts out defective sections.
  • Cross Cut Saw Operator --
  • Drum Saw Operator --
  • Mill Worker --