Tool and Die Technology

The Precision Machining program at Wallace State Community College trains students to carry through to completion the construction and repair of all kinds of metallic and non-metallic parts, tools, and machines. They also learn how to understand blueprints and specifications.

Admission Requirements and Curriculum

Tool and Die Technology

Tool and Die Technology

About the Program

Wallace State Tool and Die Technologists will be trained in a comprehensive program including design, setup, maintenance and repair as well as covering topics on tig welding and metallurgy.

Tool and Die Makers are among the most highly skilled workers in manufacturing and are knowledgeable in machining operations, mathematics, and blueprint reading. They must also be familiar with machining properties, such as hardness and heat tolerance, of a wide variety of metals, alloys, plastics, ceramics and other composite materials. Tool and Die Makers plan and execute the entire sequence of tool and die construction from design to final machined product. They perform the following tasks:

  • Study blueprints or specifications and visualize shape of die, part, or tool.
  • Compute dimensions of assembly and plan sequence of operations.
  • Measure, mark, and scribe metal or plastic stock to lay out machining, using instruments, such as protractors, micrometers, scribes, and rulers.
  • Set up and operate machine tools, such as lathes, milling machines, shapers, and grinders, to machine parts.
  • Lift, position, and secure machined parts on surface plate or worktable, using hoist, vises, v-blocks, or angle plates.
  • Smooth and polish flat and contoured surfaces of parts or tools, using scrapers, abrasive stones, files, emery cloth, or power grinder.
  • Design tools, jigs, fixtures, and templates for use as work aids. Cast plastic tools or parts, or tungsten-carbide cutting tips, using pre-made molds.
  • Inspect die for smoothness, contour conformity, and defects by touch or visually, using loupe or microscope.


Tool and die making will appeal to those who enjoy solving practical, hands-on problems, working on their own, and making decisions. Tool and Die Makers need extreme patience and painstaking attention to detail since they must be precise to one ten-thousandth of an inch. Since the work involves intricate manipulation of tools and instruments, Tool and Die Makers need a mechanical aptitude, the ability to understand and analyze the workings of machinery, knowledge of shop mathematics, and the capacity to visualize mechanical and physical relationships between objects.

Career Outlook

Median annual salary earnings of tool and die makers was $52,480 in May 2017. Tool and die makers play a key role in building and maintaining advanced automated manufacturing equipment, which makes them less susceptible to lay-offs than other less-skilled production workers. (Source: U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Program Overview

Tool and Die Technology


Degrees/Awards Offered

AAS, STC


Availability

  • Day
  • Evening

Tool and Die Technology


Curriculum: Program of Study

Pathway Maps: Associate in Applied Science, Certificate

 

Career Outlook

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