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How to Become a CNC Machinist: Qualifications, Skills, and More

Computer numerically controlled (CNC) machinists can sometimes not only be part of a team responsible for creating and building F1 race cars parts, but may also be helping advance the healthcare industry. This job requires certain qualifications, but if you’re looking to start a career in this industry, applying to a vocational school may be the best start.

What Is a CNC Machinist?

CNC workers are responsible for writing programs for a machine to make parts out of various materials such as wood or steel. They read through schematics and instructions and use raw materials to create high-quality products for many different industries. Formula 1 races make use of CNC machinists to create parts for vehicles, and in the healthcare industry, components or devices can be made with CNC machines. Machinists can also work several machines at once or operate only one. If the materials produced by the CNC machines are not of good quality, it’s their responsibility to make any adjustments and report to the CNC programmers if needed.

CNC Machinist Qualifications and Skills

There are a few skills to be successful in CNC machinist jobs. First, people in this field are generally good at math. Because of the precise calculations used to create the parts, having strong  mathematical skills to do this properly is important. Great communication is important as well, as you and the client who needs the parts should to be on the same page. There are also a lot of repetitive motions CNC machinists go through every day, so it’s important to be physically healthy and fit.

In terms of qualifications, CNC machinists usually have  at least a high school diploma and a postsecondary course. CNC workers are typically trained on the job, but having education through a vocational school is often recommended. College degrees aren’t typically required for this specific job If you want to proceed in this field and are looking for education, vocational schools offer training programs that can provide instruction on the skills to get started in this career field.

Challenges for CNC Machinists

CNC workers sometimes have a huge responsibility, and their jobs aren’t easy. That said, they are still doable and significant in several different industries.

CNC machinists typically have strong mathematical skills in order to excel in this field, and this is due to the complex geometric patterns they need to understand. When a client requests something to be made, you may be required to ideate the part and create it efficiently. Also, there is often quite a bit of data processing involved. You’ll typically be using a computer frequently, and inputting data correctly will be important so the job is done well.

It’s common for machines to be replaced or upgraded, and it’s important to adapt to the new machine should your employer upgrade. Adaptability and versatility are important in becoming successful in this career path.

How to Become a CNC Machinist

Consider applying to Edge Tech Academy’s CNC Machinist program. We offer an affordable and hands-on education program for people looking to become a CNC machinist. Contact us today to learn more!