Key Cutter

Cut notches in key blanks to duplicate notches of original key.
picture of Key Cutter

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$20,000 – $54,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Key Cutters do?

Cuts notches in key blanks to duplicate notches of original key, using key-duplicating machine: Selects key blank according to size, shape, or code number of original key. Positions original key and blank in vises on carriage of machine and against guides. Turns thumbscrews to secure key and blank in vises. Starts cutting disk of machine. Pushes and pulls horizontally moving carriage of machine to slide notched edge of original key against stationary guide on machine and to move key blank against cutting disk, duplicating notches of original key in bit of blank. Turns thumbscrews and removes keys from vises. Presses and holds duplicated key against revolving wire wheel to remove burrs from key. Positions one key on top of another to compare notches of keys. May collect payment from customer and make change. May sell key holders or related novelty items.


Should I be a Key Cutter?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • High Achiever: You love the challenge of tackling difficult work.
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • How to become a Key Cutter

    Key Cutters generally graduate from high school and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Associate’s degree to increase your chances of finding a good job. Check out these schools offering Key Cutter-related education!
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