Wood machinists are key members of the joinery team. Wood machinists need to understand wood as a material, and how to get the best from it.
The Role
  • Reading and understanding technical drawings and templates
  • Selecting the right material and calculating the quantity needed for the job
  • Use CAD/CAM or CNC software and can receive training on operating CNC wood cutting/shaping machinery
  • Preparing and using woodworking machinery to create required components
  • Basic maintenance woodworking machinery
  • Keeping working areas clean, safe and ready for work
  • Working in a joinery workshop with dust extraction but tolerance of dust is needed for the job
  • Wood machining involves standing at the machine and frequent bending and movement while setting up
  • The working week is between 35 and 40 hours
  • Newly trained Wood Machinists can earn in the region of £17,000-£20,000
  • Trained with experience Wood Machinists can earn in the region of £20,000 - £35,000
Salaries typically depend on location, employer and level of responsibility.
Qualifications & Training
You will require 5 GCSEs at grades 9-4 (A*-C) including Maths and English. Demonstrating your creativity and interest in wood, either through things you’ve made or school holiday working alongside a carpenter or joiner, will also interest employers. Full apprenticeships are available in wood machining at Levels 2 & 3.  Diplomas in Wood Machining at levels 2 & 3 are also available. College courses and NVQs in bench joinery and wood machining are likely to be of interest to employers in the joinery sector, as the skills gained are more relevant to the work.