Printing Machine Operators Job Description

The Printing Machine Operator sets up or operates various types of printing machines, such as offset, letterset, intaglio, or gravure presses or screen printers to produce print on paper or other materials.

Tasks for Printing Machine Operators

  • The Printing Machine Operator inspects and examines printed products for print clarity, color accuracy, conformance to specifications, and external defects.

  • The Printing Machine Operators push buttons turn handles or move controls and levers to start and control printing machines.

  • The Printing Machine Operators reposition printing plates, adjust pressure rolls, or otherwise adjust machines to improve print quality, using knobs, hand wheels, or hand tools.

  • The Printing Machine Operators set and adjust speed, temperature, ink flow, and positions and pressure tolerances of equipment.

  • The Printing Machine Operators examine job orders to determine details such as quantities to be printed, production times, stock specifications, colors, and color sequences.

  • The Printing Machine Operators select and install printing plates, rollers, feed guides, gauges, screens, stencils, type, dies, and cylinders in machines according to specifications, using hand tools.

  • The Printing Machine Operator monitors feeding, printing, and racking processes of presses to maintain specified operating levels and to detect malfunctions, making adjustments as necessary.

  • The Printing Machine Operator operates equipment at slow speed to ensure proper ink coverage, alignment, and registration.

  • The Printing Machine Operator loads, positions, and adjusts unprinted materials on holding fixtures or in equipment loading and feeding mechanisms.

  • The Printing Machine Operator pours or spreads paint, ink, color compounds, and other materials into reservoirs, troughs, hoppers, or color holders of printing units, making measurements and adjustments to control color and viscosity.

The Printing Machine Operator needs knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance. The Printing Machine Operator needs knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods. The Printing Machine Operator needs the skill to control operations of equipment or systems. The Printing Machine Operator needs knowledge enough to watch the gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly. The Printing Machine Operator needs the skill to determine causes of operating errors and decide what to do about it. The Printing Machine Operator needs the skill to perform routine maintenance on equipment and determine when and what kind of maintenance is needed. The Printing Machine Operator needs the skill to understand written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents. The Printing Machine Operator needs the skill to use logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems. The Printing Machine Operator needs the skill to determine the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job. The Printing Machine Operator needs the skill to give full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Work Activities for the Printing Machine Operator

  • The Printing Machine Operator uses either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes not including computers or vehicles.

  • The Printing Machine Operator observes, receives, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

  • The Printing Machine Operator uses hands and arms in handling, installing positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

  • The Printing Machine Operator inspects equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

  • The Printing Machine Operator performs physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body.

  • The Printing Machine Operator estimates sizes, distances, and quantities or determine time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

  • The Printing Machine Operator identifies information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

  • The Printing Machine Operator analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

  • The Printing Machine Operator provides information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

  • The Printing Machine Operator services, repairs, adjusts, and tests machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operates primarily on the basis of mechanical not electronic principles.

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