Metal casting

Metal casters produce components using the traditional skills of patternmaking and casting.

Careers information

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What does it involve?

People involved in the metal casting industry are trained to use various methods of producing parts from molten metal, and learn how to test, control, and adjust the chemical make-up of the metal.They use different types of traditional and modern mould making techniques, including 3D printed moulds. Producing exact replicas of the parts requires a high level of skill, as a change allowance must be made for when the molten metal cools.

Metal workers need to have:

  • knowledge of different metals, woods, clays, plastics and resins
  • knowledge of how to read technical plans and drawings
  • knowledge of casting methods
  • knowledge of various types of sands, paints and coatings used in moulding
  • knowledge of how to use and care for metal working tools and equipment.
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Typical day

Metal workers may do some or all of the following:

  • read, interpret and create design drawings
  • build plugs (plastic replicas), and then produce patterns from materials such as wood, fiberglass and metal
  • make moulds
  • select the right metal for each job
  • heat and melt the required metal
  • pour it into moulds or hammer and cut it to shape
  • remove castings from moulds when they have cooled
  • inspect, test and repair metal castings
  • temper, harden, polish and coat the final product.
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What kind of jobs could I do?

  • Patternmaker 
  • Foundryman
  • Moulder/coremaker

How much could I earn?

  • Per year

    $30k- $60k

Career pathway

SchoolEntry level jobsAdvancing jobsSenior jobs

Ideally, NCEA Level 2 passes in:

  • Maths
  • Science (Physics)
  • Technology (Metal Work)
  • English
  • Foundryman
  • Pattern Maker
    • Mould Maker
    • Metal worker
    • Metal Forger
    • Blacksmith
    • Metal Extruder
    • Metal Worker
  • Specialist Engineer
  • Supervisor
  • Leading Hand
  • Workshop Supervisor
  • Welding Supervisor
  • Foreman
  • Site Supervisor
  • Business Manager
  • Business Owner
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