drawings and plans. These drawings and plans are used by others
to build things. Some of these things are manufactured. These
include things like toys, toasters, and machinery. Some are structures.
These include things like houses, office buildings, and oil and
that drafters make help guide others. They show technical details
of products and structures. They show the dimensions, materials,
and procedures. Drafters use drawings, rough sketches, and information
given to them. Drafters use technical handbooks, tables, calculators,
and computers to complete their work.
In the past,
drafters sat at drawing boards. They used pencils, pens, compasses,
protractors, triangles and other tools to do their job. Most drafters
now use computer-aided design and drafting (CADD) systems for
their drawings. CADD systems let drafters make changes and copies
a number of different types of drafters:
drafters prepare drawings to be used to make aircraft, missiles,
and related parts.
drafters prepare drawings of buildings and other structures.
They may work on just one type of structure, such as residential
or commercial. They may also work with just one type of material,
such as concrete or steel.
drafters prepare drawings used in major construction or civil
engineering projects. These include such things as highways, bridges,
drafters prepare drawings used for electrical equipment and
drafters prepare drawings used to make, install, and repair
electronic devices and components.
drafters prepare drawings of machinery and mechanical devices.
or pipeline drafters prepare drawings used in the oil and gas
fields, refineries, chemical plants and other systems.
work a 40-hour week. A small number work part time. Drafters usually
work in comfortable offices that are set up for their tasks. They
work at computers much of the time. As a result, they may get
eye strain, backaches, and hand and wrist problems.
like to hire people who have training in drafting after high school.
This training is offered in trade schools, community colleges,
and some 4-year colleges and universities. Employers want people
with good drafting and mechanical drawing skills and who know
drafting standards. It is important to be knowledgeable about
math, science, and engineering technology and to know how to use
a computer to design and draft. It's also important to be able
to speak and write well and to solve problems.
to be a drafter involves math and communications skills. Beyond
that, the training does differ by specialty. For example, if you
want to be an electronics drafter you will study how to draw electronic
components and circuits.
|How much does this job pay?
half of all architectural and civil drafters earned between $30,170
and $45,500 in 2002. The lowest-paid 10 percent earned less than
$24,570. The highest-paid 10 percent earned more than $56,260.
half of all mechanical drafters earned between $32,100 and $51,950
in 2002. The lowest-paid 10 percent earned less than $25,950.
The highest-paid 10 percent earned more than $64,780.
half of all electrical and electronics drafters earned between
$32,060 and $53,440 in 2002. The lowest-paid 10 percent earned
less than $25,710. The highest-paid 10 percent earned more than
about 216,000 jobs in 2002. About half of these were architectural
and civil drafters. Another third were mechanical drafters.
of all jobs for drafters were in firms that work on a contract
basis. More than a quarter of all jobs were in manufacturing industries.
Most of the rest worked in the construction, government, wholesale
trade, utilities, and employment services. Only a small number
worked for themselves in 2002.
are expected to grow more slowly than the average for all jobs
through 2012. The greater use of CADD equipment will mean fewer
jobs for lesser skilled drafters.
at least two years of training in a drafting program after high
school will have the best chance for a job. This training should
provide strong technical skills. It should also give the student
lots of experience with CADD systems.
|Are there other jobs like this?
photogrammetrists, and surveying technicians
- Civil Engineers
Source: Occupational Outlook Handbook -- U.S. Department of
Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics
|Where can you find more information?
about drafters can be found in the Careers