Blacksmiths shape bars, rods and blocks of metal by heating and hammering to produce or repair metal articles.
Specialisations: Hammer Smith, Spring Maker, Tool Smith.
Extensive experience or a certificate III or IV in engineering - fabrication trade is needed to work as a Blacksmith.
Selects metal stock for job requirements.
Heats metal in forges and furnaces and hammers, punches and cuts metal using hand tools and machine presses.
Tempers and hardens finished articles by quenching in oil or water baths or by cooling gradually in air.
Prepares electrolytic and silver solutions for electroforming and planting solution to the objects to be coated.
Sets and adjusts controls to regulate electric current and depositing of coating on objects.
Prepares horses hooves for shoeing, nails horseshoes to hooves and trims hooves.
Cuts, trims, shapes and smoothes stock to form mould patterns.
Fills boxes with sand and sets patterns in place and pours molten metal into moulds, applies refractory paint and positions cores in moulds.
Finishes metal and articles by polishing and buffing and applying shellac, lacquer, paint and other finishes.
Vocational Education and Training (VET)
Informal or on-the-job
JSA produces employment projections to show where likely future job opportunities may be. Employment projections data are only produced for occupations at the broad four digit Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) level. While data are not available for this occupation, projections data are available for the parent occupation, Metal Casting, Forging & Finishing Trades, under the outlook section.
Earnings and hours
Around 77% of people employed as Blacksmiths work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 11 percentage points above the all jobs average (66%).
Full-time workers work an average of 43 hours per week in their main job. This is similar to the all jobs average (44 hours per week).
Sources:Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average.
Most Blacksmiths work in the Manufacturing industry. They are also employed in industries like:
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Blacksmiths||All Jobs Average|
Around 46% of Blacksmiths live outside of capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 38%.
Queensland has a large share of employment relative to its population size.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian states, territories and regions, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age and gender
The median age of Blacksmiths is 48 years. This is higher than the all jobs average of 40 years.
A large share of workers are aged 45 to 54 years.
Females make up 2% of the workforce. This is 46 percentage points below the all jobs average of 48%.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile and gender share compared to the all jobs average.
Age Profile (% Share)
|Age Bracket||Blacksmiths||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||8.9||4.2|
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Education, training and experience
Extensive experience or a certificate III or IV in engineering - fabrication trade is needed to work as a Blacksmith.
- My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
- AAPathways website to explore Automotive Manufacturing Sector, Manufacturing and Metal and Engineering VET training pathways.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Blacksmiths||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||0.0||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||23.4||12.5|
Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Skills and Knowledge
Employers look for Metal Casting, Forging & Finishing Trades Workers who are reliable, work well in a team and are hardworking.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
43%Operation and control
Controlling equipment or systems.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
41%Quality control analysis
Doing tests and checking products, services, or processes to make sure they are working properly.
Reading work related information.
Talking to others.
Figuring out why a machine or system went wrong and working out what to do about it.
Writing things for co-workers or customers.
39%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
37%Coordination with others
Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.
37%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.
Understanding why people react the way they do.
Maintaining equipment and deciding what maintenance will be needed in the future.
Figuring out the best way to teach or learn something new.
32%Management of personnel resources
Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, and choosing the best people for the job.
Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.
Fixing machines or systems.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
63%Production and processing
Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.
Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
51%Education and training
Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
51%Administration and management
Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.
49%Engineering and technology
Use engineering, science and technology to design and produce goods and services.
Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
43%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
40%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.
Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.
33%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.
32%Building and construction
Materials, and methods used to construct or repair houses, buildings, or other structures like highways and roads.
The physical laws of matter, motion and energy, and how they interact through space and time.
27%Communications and media
Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.
26%Personnel and human resources
Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.
24%Sales and marketing
Showing, promoting, and selling including marketing strategy, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
21%Law and government
How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
Quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
Keep your hand or arm steady.
Listen to and understand what people say.
Put together small parts with your fingers.
Quickly move your hand to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Use your eyes to quickly compare groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.
Quickly move your hand, finger, or foot when a sound, light, picture or something else appears.
Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or changed.
Communicate by speaking.
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
43%Sorting or ordering
Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Read and understand written information.
Pay attention to a certain sound when there are other distracting sounds.
Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.
Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.
Use your arms and/or legs at the same time while sitting, standing, or lying down.
Pay attention to something without being distracted.
Change when and how fast you move based on how something else is moving.
Speak clearly so others can understand you.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
80%Handling and moving objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, moving and manipulating objects.
64%Controlling equipment or machines
Operating machines or processes either directly or using controls (not including computers or vehicles).
62%Doing physically active work
Use your arms, legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling objects.
53%Monitoring people, processes and things
Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.
51%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
51%Building good relationships
Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.
49%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
49%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
49%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
47%Checking for errors or defects
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.
46%Driving vehicles or equipment
Running, manoeuvring, navigating, or driving things like forklifts, vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
Using your own ideas for developing, designing, or creating something new.
46%Working with mechanical equipment
Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment.
43%Planning and prioritising work
Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.
41%Assessing and evaluating things
Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.
40%Training and teaching others
Understanding the needs of others, developing training programs, and teaching or instructing.
40%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
39%Checking compliance with standards
Deciding whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
36%Collecting and organising information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.
34%Documenting or recording information
Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Interests and demands
Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.
Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
Supportive management that stands behind employees. Workers are treated fairly by their company, they are supported by management, and have supervisors who train them well.
Serve and work with others. Workers usually get along well with each other, do things to help other people, and are rarely pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
Work alone and make decisions. Workers are able to try out their own ideas, make decisions on their own, and work with little or no supervision.
Advancement and the potential to lead. Workers are recognised for the work that they do, they may give directions and instructions to others, and they are looked up to in their company and their community.
Work near dangerous equipment like saws, machinery with open moving parts, or moving traffic.
100%Wear common protective or safety equipment
Wear equipment like safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets.
Talk with people face-to-face.
Work to strict deadlines.
89%Loud or uncomfortable sounds
Be exposed to noises and sounds that are distracting or uncomfortable.
89%Spend time standing
Spend time standing at work.
Work with people in a group or team.
87%Contact with people
Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.
84%Using your hands to handle, control, or feel
Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.
84%Impact of decisions
Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.
83%Health and safety of others
Take responsibility for the health and safety of others.
81%In an open vehicle or equipment
Work in an open vehicle (e.g., a tractor).
81%Pace of work set by equipment
Pace of work depends on the speed of equipment or machinery.
80%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
77%Very hot or cold temperatures
Work in very hot or cold temperatures.
76%Freedom to make decisions
Have freedom to make decision on your own.
75%Responsible for outcomes
Take responsibility for the results of other people's work.
75%Minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings
Be exposed to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings.
74%Frequent decision making
Frequently make decisions that impact other people.
74%Indoors, not heat controlled
Work indoors without heating or cooling (e.g., warehouse without heat).
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 51-4022.00 - Forging Machine Setters, Operators, and Tenders, Metal and Plastic.
Links and downloads
Research and reports
The Skills Priority List provides a current labour market rating and a future demand rating for nearly 800 occupations nationally. Current labour market ratings are available for occupations at a state and territory level.
Occupation profiles data are available for download.
The Employment Projections are available for download.