What Does a Saw Filer/Fitter Do?

Saw Filer/Fitters (611B) repair, set, and sharpen blades for band saws, chain saws, hands saws, circular saws and other types of saws.

They also:
  • Maintain wood sawing machines in lumber and paper mills
  • File grooved, contoured, and irregular surfaces of knives, saw blades, and metal objects
  • Use hand tools, filing machines, and welding equipment
  • May use computers, sophisticated electronic equipment and lasers
  • Troubleshoot sawing machinery and analyze faults for corrective and/or repair action

Additional information on training standards for this particular trade in the Industrial sector may be found on the Ontario College of Trades (OCOT) website at: http://www.collegeoftrades.ca/trades/training-standards1/industrial

What Preparation and Training Do You Need?

To successfully become a Saw Filer/Fitter, you must complete your Grade 12 secondary school education or equivalent, preferably with credits in Math, English and Science. Extra training in welding, electronics, carpentry and metalworking would be an asset. Many employers require an apprenticeship to be completed although Saw Filer/Fitter is a Voluntary trade. An apprenticeship is comprised of 6,000-8,000 hours of on-the-job and in-school training. This apprenticeship training usually requires 3-4 years to complete. The in-school component is comprised of 4 four-week blocks of school. To attain success in this trade it is strongly recommended to have extra training in woodworking.This is the minimum to be apprenticed in this trade under the (OCTAA) Ontario College of Trades Apprenticeship Act (2009). Please note that minimum entry requirements to this and other trades are currently under review by the Ontario College of Trades.
 
What’s Your Future as a Saw Filer/Fitter?

Saw Filer/Fitters generally work a 40 hour week in saw mills or pulp mills. They may be required to live and work in remote areas where sawmills are located. They usually work indoors, often in a “saw room” or shop. They may be required to do heavy lifting and are often exposed to high noise levels. Prospects for employment in and wages for this trade vary across the province.
 
Employers who hire Saw Filer/Fitters include:  
  • Sawmills
  • Pulp mills
You can find more information related to a career as a Saw Filer/Fitter at the following websites: www.woodfibre.com/ and  www.cep.ca.

Wage Rate
  • Apprentices generally earn less than Journey people, however as your skill and expertise increase, so does your wage
  • Fully qualified Saw Filer/Fitters can earn an average of $18 - $22 per hour
Self-Rating

Ask Yourself: Is becoming a Saw Filer/Fitter for You?
 
Are you physically fit with good manual dexterity?
Yes      No
Are you conscientious with an attention to detail and a desire to work safely?
Yes      No
Do you enjoy tinkering, using tools, solving puzzles, doing calculations and figuring out problems?
Yes      No
Do you enjoy learning about new technology on an ongoing basis?
Yes      No
Are you self-motivated and able to work well independently to get the job done just right?
Yes      No
Can you communicate effectively with supervisors, co-workers and customers?
Yes      No

If you answered Yes to most of these questions, a career as a Saw Filer/Fitter may be for You!

You may also want to explore other careers that require similar interests and skills, such as:
 
  • General Machinist
  • Welder
  • Band Saw Technician
  • Locksmith
  • Tool and Cutter Grinder
  • Precision Metal Fabricator
 

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