Forming plastic and metal is one of many essential jobs within a factory. The machines called
forgers and swages use force to make bends, crimps, semi-complete cuts and other forms into
the material. Having a swaging and a forge operator onsite can save a company in the cost
of purchasing the parts from an outside source. The shipping time and costs are also savings.
Let’s look at the essential job of the swaging machine operator, one of the little known skilled
positions within the plant.
The operator is often more than the person who forms the materials. Swaging operators also
maintain the equipment by performing basic preventive maintenance duties required every day.
The operator performs the set up duties, changing components as needed for the required project.
The blueprints for the project are the swaging operator’s marching orders for the project.
The force used to form the metal and plastic is exerted on a machine as small as a bench swaging
attached to a table or an industrial-sized hydraulic machine that takes up a large portion of floor
space. Smaller swaging machines are used in manual workstations and by small manufacturers
who have found the need for their own in-house forger. The large machines are maintained by
companies with high production volume of units that require the shaped parts.
Training and Qualifications
This is a skilled position. Swaging operators are trained forgers who are well versed on the
needs and requirements of the machinery. They are trained in reading and translating blueprints,
mechanical engineering and repair as well as quality control. A high school diploma is necessary
for the job. Most swaging operators learn on the job, answering to the head of the forging
department who assigns a trainer. He may start off in the company in some assembly or
maintenance capacity before working up to a swaging position.
Cold molded metals are a staple in manufacturing. Whether they are crimped, curled, slit or bent, the metals are created using swaging machinery under the watchful eye of a skilled operator. This position is vital to manufacturing companies whose specialize in industrial materials and others that have a heavy focus on tubing, for example. Inquire in forging departments for positions that will allow assemblers to work up to a swaging position. This skilled position is in
demand, and any experience with blueprint reading and machine operating will get your foot in
the door of the factory.
Eagle Technologies Group is an industry leader in the design and installation of Factory Automation Systems worldwide.