Tool Grinder Operator

Set up and operate grinding machines to sharpen cutting tools.
picture of Tool Grinder Operator

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$22,000 – $52,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Tool Grinder Operators do?

Sets up and operates grinding machines, such as surface and universal, carbide, drill, and tool-and-cutter grinders, to sharpen cutting tools to specifications, using blueprints, job orders, and knowledge of abrasives and metal properties: Reviews blueprints and job orders to plan production sequence. Selects grinding wheel of shape and grade and attaches to spindle, using wrenches. Positions and secures cutting tool on machine table, using magnetic chuck or holding fixture, or mounts tool on arbor and clamps between centers. Turns handwheels to position table or spindle to obtain specified taper and bevel on edges of cutting tools. Moves controls to set cutting tool rotation speed, feed rate, and grinding wheel rotation speed. Starts machine and turns wheel or engages feed to move workpiece to grinding wheel. Measures sharpened cutting tools to verify conformance to specifications, using fixed gauges, micrometers, calipers, optical comparators, and surface gauges. Dresses abrasive wheel to change cutting action or shape. May grind special form tools, involving special setups and wheel dressing. May analyze specifications and select tooling to be used on production jobs. May design, modify, or make special tools according to specifications or tooling requirements. May braze or solder carbide tips to cutting tools. May be required to have specialized experience with particular type of cutting tool sharpened or machine operated and be designated Broach Grinder; Drill Sharpener; Hob Grinder.


Should I be a Tool Grinder Operator?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.
  • Independent: You enjoy flying solo and doing things your own way.

  • Also known as: Cutter-Grinder Operator, Grinder Cell Operator, OD Grinder Operator, Outer Diameter Grinder Operator See More

    How to become a Tool Grinder Operator

    Most Tool Grinder Operators have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate to increase your competitiveness in the field. Chart?chd=s:9taaaa&chl=no+college+%2876%25%29|certificate+%2824%25%29||||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,76,76
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