Just the Job – Mechanical Engineer

Clinton: Welcome back to Just the Job. Ever
wondered how these jar and bottles are made? Jake is about to find out as he checks out
a career in Mechanical Engineering. Jake: Hi, I’m Jake Ihaka and I’m here
today at OI New Zealand to have a look at mechanical engineering in the glassmaking
industry. Clinton: Jake is joining the team at O-I New
Zealand, one of 79 glass making plants based in 21 countries around the world. It’s New
Zealand’s only glassmaker and its 6 production lines run 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Jake: Hi I’m Jake. Mohammed: Hi Jake, my name’s Mohammed, welcome
to OI Glass New Zealand. I’ve got plenty to show you so let’s get you signed in eh. Jake: Sweet as. Clinton: Mohammed Hafiz is a line manager
at O-I New Zealand. First there’s an induction and safety briefing and then he joins Mohammed
for a tour around the factory. Mo: The machines can be very complicated itself.
There’s a lot of things to learn – like mechanically and also electrically, and putting
it all together to make a glass bottle. Clinton: Working here is unique – staff have
to be skilled in both mechanical engineering and glass making. Jake’s first lesson is
to find out how glass is made. Jake: What raw materials do you use? Mo: The raw materials we have is sand, soda
ash and limestone, and cullet – we call it cullet – but this is all recycled glass
that we get back from the consumers out there. Clinton: More than half the raw material used
to make the glass is recycled. Clinton: The material is elevated into batch
hoppers which supply the furnace. Clinton: It goes from the hoppers into the
furnace where it is melted at 1600 degrees Celsius to create molten glass. Clinton: The molten glass then goes into an
orifice ring, then cut into sections called Gobs. Clinton: The Gobs are then loaded into the
blank side of the machine where it is pressed or blown into a Parasin, which is a miniature
version of what the bottle will look like when it is completed. Clinton: The Parasin is then moved over to
the mould side of the machine where it is blown into its final form whether it be a
jar, beer bottle or wine bottle. Clinton: Gobs, blanks and moulds, – there’s
a lot of new names for Jake to get his head around. Clinton: And his first job has another new
name, a process called mopping. Mo: It’s one of the things we use to lubricate
the actual gear because it does run quite hot and we’ve got to keep it a – get it
down to a certain temperature. We’re lubricating with a special oil that we get – it’s
got a high graphite content – which keeps it nice and friction-free on the blanks. Mo: Every hour we take bottles off the line.
We take a sample-set every hour, and then we’ll check though the sample-set for defects.
Visual defects – anything that will cause issues with the customers, consumers and so
on, and anything that’s found – we rectify the fault before we put it back into a lehr. Clinton: The company produce hundreds of different
bottles, and each bottle design has its own mould. Clinton: The slightest wear in a mould will
produce a fault in a bottle, so this huge workshop is mostly dedicated to maintaining
moulds. Clinton: Jake is watching Mould Shop fitter
Mark Robertson spray weld. Metal particles are sprayed onto a damaged part and that builds
up a new surface. The area is then very carefully filed and ground back to a very precise dimension. Mark: You place the two halves of the mould
together… Jake: Ok. Mark: …you use this chain clamp to get it
nice and tight… Jake: Yep. Mark: …place it down on here… Mark: …get the light in behind it so you
can see what you’re doing… Mark: …then you use this tool here to buff
out the welds and make the cavity smooth. So if you want to have a go at that… Mark: Basically, practice makes perfects when
it comes to repairing moulds. The ore you do it, the more you’ll get the hang of it.
You have to be very good with your hands, you have to have good eyesight, you have to
be very precise with your tools. Mark: Ok, that looks good. Clinton: Apprentice Scott Holden has followed
his brother into the company and is enjoying the training. Scott: Yeah, it’s been so cool. I’ve learnt
heaps of new things – how to machine, weld, maintenance… Clinton: Two Competenz account managers supervise
apprentices. Adrienne Donne looks after the glass side, while Gerard Robbins looks after
the mechanical side. Adrienne: Apprentices need to understand and
know about the glass industry combined with the mechanical engineering which is where
they end up with two qualifications. Clinton: The apprentices are not employed
by O-I New Zealand, but by a trust. Gerard: ATNZ is a trust – a non-profitable
charitable trust – whereabouts we employ the apprentices directly, then we host them
or second them out to a company, like OI Glass. It’s a benefit for all because they’re
being paid as they’re learning and they’re coming out with a qualification at the end
that is recognised worldwide. Clinton: Neil Ollerton is the company training
manager. Neil: So what I thought we’d do today is
actually revise those defects. Neil: If you guys start with that one… Neil: …and you guys start with that one. Neil: The sort of people who succeed in this
area have spent some time in their youth tinkering with things, taking them apart and putting
them back together again. It’s people who want to look and know how things work. There’s
opportunities to work internationally – we have ex-apprentices who have worked on teams
that have travelled all over Asia-Pacific, fixing machines… Clinton: Jake’s now learning about worn
plungers. Romeo: This is the damaged one here, with
a dent in the corner. Clinton: A plunger is the mould for the screw
top area. It has to be re-profiled on the lathe. Neil: It is a fantastic industry for us to
work, you know the process is fascinating, the engineering behind the process is fascinating
and it’s great to see the things that the people who’ve worked and trained actually
out on the shelves in New Zealand. Mo: Safety is number one for OI Glass – we
pride ourselves on our safety records. We are working with 1600 degrees in the furnace
and on the machines we could be working with up to 800 degrees on the bottles themselves
– we’re using the right protective gear. Mo: Glassmaking has been around for centuries.
It’s come a long way in the industry with the innovation we’ve already had, but we’re
always looking for new ways of improving our processes and making the perfect bottle. Mo: Jake’s shown a lot of interest in the
industry. He’s very keen to learn and he’s definitely got the right attitude so I think
he’s got a long way to go. Jake: I’ve really enjoyed my visit. It was
a good look into the industry – there’s a lot to learn but I think I wouldn’t mind
giving it a crack. Clinton: The ATNZ Trust is New Zealand’s
largest employer of mechanical engineering apprentices. Competenz manages and delivers
the ATNZ Apprentice Programme. An apprenticeship at O-I New Zealand will deliver qualifications
in both mechanical engineering and glass. There’s a shortage of people in the role
so the chances of getting a job are good. Clinton: Well done Jake. We’re heading down
to Christchurch in a moment but first here’s Hana from Careers New Zealand. Hana: Thanks Clinton. Good skilled mechanical
engineers are much in demand and it is a great career option too with lots of career advancement
opportunities. Everyone has skills but how well do you know your own skills? Find out
at careers.govt.nz.