Engine and Other Machine Assemblers
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Construct, assemble, or rebuild machines, such as engines, turbines, and similar equipment used in such industries as construction, extraction, textiles, and paper manufacturing.
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Titles for this career often contain these words
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Responsibilities and activities

Assemblers and fabricators typically do the following:

  • Read and understand schematics and blueprints
  • Position or align components and parts either manually or with hoists
  • Use handtools or machines to assemble parts
  • Conduct quality control checks
  • Clean and maintain work area and equipment, including tools

Assemblers and fabricators need a range of knowledge and skills. For example, assemblers putting together complex machines must be able to read detailed schematics. After determining how parts should connect, they use handtools or power tools to trim, cut, and make other adjustments to fit components together. When the parts are properly aligned, they connect them with bolts and screws, or they weld or solder pieces together.

Assemblers look for faulty components and mistakes throughout the assembly process. Such assessments help to ensure quality by allowing assemblers to fix problems before defective products are made.

Modern manufacturing systems use robots, computers, and other technologies. These systems use teams of workers to produce entire products or components.

Assemblers and fabricators may also be involved in product development. Designers and engineers may consult manufacturing workers during the design stage to improve product reliability and manufacturing efficiency. Some experienced assemblers work with designers and engineers to build prototypes or test products.

Although most assemblers and fabricators are classified as team assemblers, others specialize in producing one type of product or in doing the same or similar tasks throughout the manufacturing process.

The following are examples of types of assemblers and fabricators:

Aircraft structure, surfaces, rigging, and systems assemblers fit, fasten, and install parts of airplanes, missiles, or space vehicles. These parts include the wings, landing gear, and heating and ventilating systems.

Coil winders, tapers, and finishers roll wire curs of electrical components used in electric and electronic products, including resistors, transformers, and electric motors. Using handtools, these workers also attach and trim coils or insulation.

Electrical and electronic equipment assemblers build products such as computers, electric motors, and sensing equipment. Unlike in industries with automated systems, much of the small-scale production of electronic devices for aircraft, military systems, and medical equipment must be done by hand. These workers use devices such as soldering irons.

Electromechanical equipment assemblers make and modify mechanical devices that run on electricity, such as household appliances, computer tomography scanners, and vending machines. These workers use tools such as rulers, rivet guns, and soldering irons.

Engine and machine assemblers construct and rebuild motors, turbines, and machines used in automobiles, construction and mining equipment, and power generators.

Fiberglass laminators and fabricators overlay fiberglass onto molds, forming protective surfaces for boat decks and hulls, golf cart bodies, and other products.

Structural metal fabricators and fitters cut, align, and fit together structural metal parts and may help weld or rivet the parts together.

Team assemblers rotate through different tasks on an assembly line, rather than specializing in a single task. Team members may decide how work is assigned and tasks are completed.

Timing device assemblers, adjusters, and calibrators manufacture or modify instruments that require precise measurement of time, such as clocks, watches, and chronometers.

Median salary: $45,770 annually
Half of those employed in this career earn between $36,200 and $58,540.
Context: Median Salary
How do salaries for this career compare to other jobs' salaries?
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Salary growth for engine and other machine assemblers
Is this job likely to reward you for sticking with it through pay raises and promotions? The higher a job’s “experience quotient,” the more you are likely to get as you stay there.
Experience quotient percentile
Take a minute to look at how much you might expect your salary to increase with each five years' experience, as well as how the numbers working at each age change. Does this seem to be a job for the young or the old, or could it be a career offering steady salary growth for many years?
Salary distribution
Number employed
About Engine and Other Machine Assemblers
How do benefits for this career compare to other jobs? The availability of health care, especially employer provided health care, and pension plans can add significantly to the value of compensation you receive in a career. These charts compare how this career compares to other careers with regard to health care and pension plans.
Employee has health insurance
Employer is providing health insurance
Worker concerns
Some jobs are more stressful than others, and some are just plain dangerous. The following list gives the percentages of engine and other machine assemblers who report hazardous or difficult situations typically occurring at least once a week.
  • Exposed to Contaminants (80%)
  • Time Pressure (78%)
  • Hazardous Equipment (70%)
  • Responsible for Others' Health (67%)
  • Consequence of Error (59%)
  • Hazardous Conditions (52%)
  • Minor Burns, Cuts, Bites (44%)
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Personality and skills
Can you see yourself in the ranks of Engine and Other Machine Assemblers? Here are the skills and traits that could lead to success.
Color vision
Assemblers and fabricators who make electrical and electronic products must distinguish different colors, because the wires they often work with are color coded.
Assemblers and fabricators should have a steady hand and good hand–eye coordination, as they must grasp, manipulate, and assemble parts and components that are often very small.
Mechanical skills
Assemblers and fabricators must have a working knowledge of basic machinery to use programmable motion-control devices, computers, and robots on the factory floor.
Physical stamina
Assemblers and fabricators must be able to stand for long periods and do repetitive tasks. Some assemblers, such as those in the aerospace industry, must frequently bend or climb ladders when assembling parts.
Physical strength
Assemblers and fabricators must be able to lift heavy components or pieces of machinery.
Technical skills
Assemblers and fabricators must understand technical manuals, blueprints, and schematics for manufacturing a range of products and machines.
Injury and Illness
About 41 engine and other machine assemblers become injured or ill for every 10,000 workers, making this job more dangerous than 64% of other careers. The most common specific illnesses or injuries are detailed following.
All cuts, lacerations, punctures
Education pathways to this career
Education attained by engine and other machine assemblers
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), engine and other machine assemblers typically hold a high school diploma or equivalent.
Sometimes the typical education identified by the BLS differs a bit from the reality of the how much education current workers actually have. The donut shows the education level held by people currently working as engine and other machine assemblers as reported in responses to the American Community Survey.
Details: Education and training recommended for engine and other machine assemblers

Assemblers and fabricators typically need a high school diploma or equivalent to enter the occupation.

Details: Licensing and certification recommended for engine and other machine assemblers

The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, International (FMA) offers certificates and training programs in fabrication, coil processing, and other related topics. Although not required, these credentials demonstrate competence and professionalism and may help a candidate advance in the occupation.

In addition, many employers, especially those in the aerospace and defense industries, require electrical and electronic assembly workers to have certifications in soldering. The Association Connecting Electronics Industries, also known as IPC, offers a number of certification programs related to electronic assembly and soldering.

Education level of Engine and Other Machine Assemblers
Only 6% of engine and other machine assemblers have a bachelor's degree or higher.
Education attained by engine and other machine assemblers
High School
Some College
Associate's Degree
Bachelor's Degree
Master's Degree
Professional Degree
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Programs recommended by the Department of Education
The Department of Education recommends the following college degree programs as preparation for this career. You can click the program row to learn more about the program and explore a list of schools that offer the program.
Number of degrees awarded in 2018
Education level of awarded degrees
Gender of graduates
Race/origin of graduates
Where are the jobs
State-by-state employment numbers
Some careers tend to be centered in specific parts of the country. For example, most jobs in fashion are in New York or California. Let's see if your dream job is easy to find in your dream location! We have a few choices for viewing the data that can help you get a full employment picture.
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Number of Engine and Other Machine Assemblers per 1,000 workers (ACS)
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Job density versus job count
Which states hire the most engine and other machine assemblers? We wonder if that's a fair question since states come in all sizes, so instead let's start with the question of which states have the highest density of people working as engine and other machine assemblers. You can choose to view the number of jobs per state if you prefer.
Salaries by state
Let's get a feel for where engine and other machine assemblers earn the highest salaries. There are several choices for which data we consider and how we view that data, and each can lead to different conclusions, so please read on...
Median salary versus state ratio
We use two methods to compare salaries across states:
  • In-state comparisons: the ratio of median (middle) salaries for engine and other machine assemblers compared to the median salary for all people working in each state, or
  • Median salary: the unaltered median salaries for engine and other machine assemblers.
We hope the ratio allows perspective about how salaries may compare to the regional cost-of-living.
The darkest shading corresponds to states in which engine and other machine assemblers earn the highest salary when compared to other jobs in the state. We think this figure might be a better indicator than the actual salary for your buying power as a state resident.
Select a state to see local area details
Location-adjusted median salary for Engine and Other Machine Assemblers (ACS)
3% of Engine and other machine assemblers are working part time.
We’ve found that some jobs have a huge number of part-time workers, and typically that is because they are unable to find full-time work or the job itself can’t provide full-time hours. With 3% part-time workers, this occupation has a lower percentage of part-time workers than 89% of careers.
Employer types
This donut shares the break-down of workers by employer type, giving us a picture of what employers most typically hire for this career.
Employers of undefined (ACS)
Private for-profit
Private not-for-profit
Local government
State government
Federal government
Self-employed incorporated
Self-employed not incorporated
Working without pay
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Distribution: Salaries of engine and other machine assemblers by type of employer
Here are the salary distributions based on employer type.
$42K$42K$38K$0$20,000$40,000$60,000$80,000State governmentPrivate for-profitAll
Engine and other machine assemblers and gender
With 15% women, this occupation has a lower percentage of women than 72% of careers.
Gender of Engine and other machine assemblers
Men (85%)
Women (15%)
Distribution: salaries by gender
Does gender greatly influence your salary in this career? The closer the bars are, the less discrepancy there is.
We only include salary data when the survey error is less than 20%, so you may see only partial information for some categories.
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Context: Women in the workforce
How does this career compare to other careers with regard to the percentage of women in the career.
Context: Salary inequity
The median (middle) salary for all full-time male workers in the US exceeds the full-time median salary for women by 19%, and the difference for engine and other machine assemblers tops that, with the median salary for men 63% higher than the median salary for women.
Race and origin of Engine and other machine assemblers
This donut shows the distribution of race and origin among those employed as Engine and other machine assemblers.
Race/origin of engine and other machine assemblers
White (75% )
Black (17% )
Other (4% )
Asian (2% )
Multiracial (2% )
Hispanic (0% )
American Indian (0% )
Pacific Islander (0% )
Distribution: salaries by race/origin
Some careers might have a pay disparity based on race or origin, the closer the below bars are the less of a discrepancy is present.
$27K$45K$48K$0$20K$40K$60K$80K$100KBlackWhiteAmerican Indian
We only include salary data when the survey error is less than 20%, so you may see only partial information for some categories.