A Day in the Life of Mechanical Engineering Apprentice Jonathan Fyfe

07:15 – Clock in at the BEL Valves factory and get changed into my overalls making sure I have all of my personal protective equipment on and it is in a good condition.

07:30 – Check in with the nightshift team so they can communicate any problems they have had on the job during their shift.

08:00 – Time for our morning team briefing where we get the chance to bring up any concerns with health and safety or the work we are about to carry out. We have no problems so my Manager begins to brief the team on which jobs need to be completed today.

08:30 – I go back to the machine and continue the process of manufacturing critical parts for an oil and gas subsea valve which nightshift had started. My manager wants a rush job on next, which means a priority job is needed to complete a valve at assembly and test.

09:30 – One hour later and I am finished my first job on the machine for the day. I now have to clean down the machine and re-set it for the rush job. I have encountered a problem when setting up my machine so my team leader comes over to teach me a new technique.

10:00 – Today I have a health and safety training course on IOSH. If I pass I will gain a 4 year IOSH European accredited health and safety passport to enable me to progress to health and safety management whilst also learning new health and safety methods which I can use on a daily basis.

12:00 – I have my dinner in the canteen with the other apprentices everyday where we get a chance to discuss what we’ve been learning each day.

12:30 – After lunch I am back on the machines, this afternoon I’ve been given the chance to learn how to operate a new machine which produces more complex and larger components. I will be shadowing an experienced engineer.

14:00 – Whilst operating the vertical CNC Milling machine, we encounter a problem with the drawing. We need to stop the machine and quickly consult the design team who are able to solve the problem instantly.

15:00 – Drawing now corrected I can get back on with machining whilst my mentor is watching me and teaching me the correct methods.

15:45 – The job is complete! Before I can finish I need to clean down the machine and write a nightshift handover log stating which job is next and providing any updates for the next machinist. I will make sure to record the drawing mistakes in case there are any more.

16:00 – I switch my machine off and return all tools and equipment ready for the nightshift team.

16:05 – Clock out and head home.