Extruding and Drawing Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic

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About the Job

Set up, operate, or tend machines to extrude or draw thermoplastic or metal materials into tubes, rods, hoses, wire, bars, or structural shapes.

It is also Called

  • Wire Puller
  • Wire Mill Rover
  • Wire Mill Operator
  • Wire Drawing Setter
  • Wire Drawing Machine Tender
  • Wire Drawing Machine Operator
  • Wire Drawer
  • Tube Drawer
  • Stretch Machine Operator
  • Spinning Bath Patroller
View All

What They Do

  • Operate shearing mechanisms to cut rods to specified lengths.
  • Select nozzles, spacers, and wire guides, according to diameters and lengths of rods.
  • Replace worn dies when products vary from specifications.
  • Adjust controls to draw or press metal into specified shapes and diameters.
  • Maintain an inventory of materials.
  • Load machine hoppers with mixed materials, using augers, or stuff rolls of plastic dough into machine cylinders.
  • Test physical properties of products with testing devices such as acid-bath testers, burst testers, and impact testers.
  • Weigh and mix pelletized, granular, or powdered thermoplastic materials and coloring pigments.
  • Troubleshoot, maintain, and make minor repairs to equipment.
  • Clean work areas.


People who work in this occupation generally have the interest code: RC.

This means people who work in this occupation generally have Realistic interests, but also prefer Conventional environments.

Work Values

People who work in this occupation generally prize Support, but also value Relationships and Independence in their jobs.

Things They Need to Know

  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

Things They Need to Be Able to Do

  • Operation Monitoring - Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Quality Control Analysis - Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Preparation Required

These occupations usually require a high school diploma.


In 2016, the average annual wage in California was $37,170 with most people making between $20,820 and $65,370


avg. annual growth

During 2014, this occupation employed approximately 3,900 people in California. It is projected that there will be 3,100 employed in 2024.

This occupation will have about 0 openings due to growth and about 100 replacement openings for approximately 100 total annual openings.