Forge Shop Workers

Forger in Metal Shop

Forging is a process of shaping and conditioning metal by pressing, pounding, or squeezing it, with or without heat. In general, forge shop workers set up and operate equipment in which hot metal that is to be shaped into something useful is held in place on a die or metal form. A second die is then dropped or forced against the hot metal, pressing it into the desired shape. The Forging Industry Association reports that approximately 45,000 people are employed in the industry in the United States and Canada.

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Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) Die Sinkers, Grinders, Hammersmiths, Hammer Operators, Picklers, Press Operators, Sandblasters, Trimmers, Upsetters
Duties Shape and condition metal by pressing, pounding, or squeezing it, with or without heat; operate equipment that performs these tasks
Salary Range $25,000 to $75,000
Work Environment Primarily Indoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Opportunities are available throughout the country, but many plants are located in large Midwest cities, as well as in Los Angeles, Houston, and Pittsburgh
Minimum Education Level
  • High School Diploma
  • Apprenticeship
School Subjects
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Technical/Shop
Experience Postsecondary training or an apprenticeship
Personality Traits
  • Hands On
  • Problem-Solving
  • Technical
  • Building/Trades
  • Math
  • Mechanical/Manual Dexterity
Certification or Licensing Recommended
Special Requirements None
Employment Prospects Poor
Advancement Prospects Fair
Outlook Decline
Career Ladder
  • Supervisor
  • Hammersmith or Other Specialized Worker
  • Helper