A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921.
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Sub-order 3.—Workers in Other Materials

639.—Other Workers

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backer (linoleum, &c.)
a machine troweller q.v. engaged in spreading paint only on back of hessian, i.e., not separately applying linoleum adhesive.
back tenter
assists grainer or printer (floorcloth) (638) q.v., engaged on rotary printing machine; regulates cloth as it passes through machine and does similar unskilled work, as directed.
bass cutter
see bass trimmer.
bass dyer
colours bass, used in brushmaking, by soaking it and boiling it in dyeing vats.
bass hackler, bass heckler, bass rougher
draws bass across a hackle to remove tangles in preparation for dressing, see bass dresser (638); occupation uncommon as bass is usually imported already hackled or is hackled by bass dresser.
bass mixer
mixes bass on floor as required prior to dressing; usually done by bass dresser (638) q.v.
bass trimmer ; bass cutter
cuts bass to lengths required for brush, using hand knife or guillotine operated by a hand lever.
bead and bugle stringer
strings beads and bugles for making bead necklaces etc.; sometimes first ornaments plain beads by attaching gold wire, using pins and hand tools, hand painting, etc.
beats feathers on a board, either by hand or by machinery, to remove moisture and starchy substance after dyeing.
bleacher, stock bleacher
bleaches bass and similar fibres, for making into brooms and brushes, by immersing them in bleaching solution and removing them when operation is completed.
brake minder
see machine toweller.
bristle baker
tends an oven in which washed brush bristles are dried.
bristle cleaner
see washer.
bristle dressing machine hand, bristle mixing machine operator
feeds and watches for smooth working, an automatic machine which mixes and cleans bristles.
bristle mixer
mixes bristles as directed, prior to dressing; usually done by hair hand (638) q.v.
bristle picker
sorts by picking out by hand, white, grey and black bristles (i.e. , hog hair, badger hair, whale whiskers as distinct from "hair" i.e. horse or goat hair) into various colours; cf. hair picker.
bristle sorter
sorts bristles into lengths by hand picking; usually done by hair hand (638) q.v. bristle worker; general term for workers opening, dressing and sorting bristles, including bristle cleaner, bristle mixer, bristle siever, etc. q.v.
broom dasher ; flicker, flirter
removes loose bristles, hair, or fibre, from filled brushes by knocking brushes against table or piece of wood.
brush painter
paints handles and glued string or wire binding of brushes by hand with a brush.
carbon block maker
fixes anodes and cathodes into concrete blocks.
carbon brush maker, carbon dynamo brush maker, carboner, carbon maker
general terms for worker who makes dynamo and motor brushes, arc lamp or switch contact rods, by cutting and forming rough carbon blocks into required size and shape with saw and emery wheel or by crushing carbon and moulding it with suitable binding liquid-includes carbon moulder, carbon brush presser, carbon mounter, grinder q.v.
carbon moulder, carbon brush presser, carbon presser
attends and feeds presses containing moulds in which carbon blocks are moulded by pressure, for use as carbon brushes, switch contact rods, etc.; fills moulds, and, guided by pressure gauge, regulates pressure by hand lever.
carbon mounter
fixes or mounts carbons on suitable conductors with screws, etc.; also attaches flexible connection on carbon to copper strip, by hand.
carbon ovenman, carbon kilnman
bakes moulded carbons, or blocks, in an oven to dry and harden them; maintains oven fire.
carrier, cloth carrier (floor cloth)
carries floor cloth from one part of works to another.
cathode builder
a carbon mounter q.v. who prepares cathodes for cells in electrolytic chlorine production, attaching, by hand, flexible connections on carbons to suitable conductor, usually copper strip.
presses cement into grooves or slits, at back of tooth brushes after attachment of bristles, using hand knife.
cement maker (linoleum)
performs one or more of the following operations; feeds stoved cake linseed oil between rollers which break cake into small pieces; lays pieces on floor to dry excess moisture; places pieces in steam heated pan and adds gum and rosin mixture; turns on steam cocks to cook mixture; tips cooked mixture, linoleum cement, by means of hand lever through hole in iron platform to rollers beneath; removes rolled cement sheets on trolleys; usually works as one of a small gang.
charger (linoleum mixing)
tips prescribed quantities of linoleum mixture ingredients into feeder of linoleum mixing machine; cf. mixer (linoleum, etc.).
charger (linoleum seasoning)
see seasoner attendant.
cloth cleaner ; guider
brushes dust or fluff from linoleum or oilcloth as it passes into printing machine.
cloth cutter ; cutter-up, trimmer
passes linoleum through machine to trim edges, or, trims with hand knife and straight edge; cuts off in lengths usually 25 yards); examines for defects; may also classify and mark for packing and despatch.
cloth winder
winds oil cloth on to rollers, by machine, ready for coating.
clutch hand
is stationed at clutch chain, and, at given signal, pulls chain to start or stop machinery; employed in certain linoleum factories.
see machine troweller.
colour blender and dresser ; inlay linoleum mixer
blends colours of cement broken up into granular form for granular inlay linoleum and dresses them to uniform size; see also colour blender and dresser (152).
colour spreader's assistant ; plater, plate holder (leather cloth)
(Lancashire) assists hand troweller (638) or machine troweller q.v. by holding plate, etc.
common finisher
see tacker.
cork brander
stamps finished corks with a heated brand fitted in a machine.
cork breaker (linoleum, etc.)
a cork grinder q.v., stationed at breaker machine, first in series of grinding machines; throws pieces of cork wood between spiked rollers of machine for initial breaking into smaller pieces.
cork dresser
a cork grinder q.v. stationed at last in series of grinding and cleaning machines; attaches bags to delivery tube of machine to collect dressed and ground cork.
cork grinder ; cork miller
grinds cork, on wheel covered with ground glass or sand, to give clean surface to cork used in manufacture of sundry cork articles; cf. cork grinder (linoleum) (638).
cork machinist
general term for workers attending cork cutting machines, e.g., cutter, cork (machine) (638), cork piercer, q.v. cork miller, see grinder, cork.
cork piercer
places bottle corks in chuck of machine drill, and drills hole in readiness for reception of a wooden peg attached to an enamelled top.
see machine troweller.
see cloth cutter.
cylinder boy
stands by feeding rollers of storage cylinders and ensures that plastic linoleum mixture passes therein freely; prevents choking of rollers by holding back material; or, performs similar duties at linoleum inlay cutting cylinders in controlling feeding of lino sheets from drums to cutting cylinders.
discharger (linoleum seasoning)
see seasoner attendant.
down picker
strips clown from quills of large feathers, in feather dressing, etc., industry.
down worker
general term for any worker who dresses, dusts, picks, and purifies feathers and down used in stuffing pillows, beds, etc., e.g. down picker; sometimes specifically designated, e.g. eiderdown worker.
driver (leather cloth)
see machine troweller.
hangs feathers in hot room to dry; often also does work of beater q.v.
drying stove hand
see stove worker.
dynamo brush maker
as for carbon brush maker.
edge minder
see machine troweller.
electrode maker (carbon)
as for carbon brush maker.
embosser (floor cloth, leather cloth, etc.)
see grainer (leather cloth).
embossing machine attendant
works at back of oilcloth, etc., embossing machine, taking out, etc.; puts in, adjusts, and takes out rollers of different patterns as required.
fancy feather sorter, feather (ostrich, etc.) sorter
sorts feathers used for millinery, according to grade, size, or colour.
felt cutter
cuts strips of felt, with hand for machine knife, for lining cases for packing of galvanised sheets.
fibre dressing machine hand ; fibre hackler, fibre heckler
feeds and attends power-driven machine which heckles or straightens fibre by combing with coarsely set steel-toothed combs, in readiness for fibre drafter (638) q.v.
fibre dyer
dips fibres into vats containing dye to colour them in preparation for brush making; washes dyed fibres in acid bath to fix dye.
fibre hackler, fibre heckler
(i) see fibre dressing machine hand;
(ii) hackles fibre by drawing it across comb by hand.
fibre mixer
mixes fibre on floor as required, prior to hackling; usually done by fibre hackler or fibre drafter (638) q.v.
fibre sorter
sorts out badly coloured fibre prior to dressing; usually done by fibre drafter (638) q.v.
flicker, flirter
see broom dasher.
founder's black maker ; moulder's black maker
makes founder's black (plumbago, or "black lead"), by grinding to fine powder a mixture of plumbago and charcoal in grinding mill which, when not done automatically, he feeds and empties by hand; operates machine by hand levers.
grainer (leather cloth) ; embosser (floorcloth, leather cloth), stamper
feeds, with cloth, embossing machine which passes it between three revolving steel rollers, surface of middle one being grained, and outer ones plain and covered with thick paper.
grinder (carbon brushes)
attends machine which grinds block carbon to shape for carbon brushes, placing blocks in formers and operating levers causing blocks to be passed over abrasive wheels; or, shapes by hand, using emery, etc.
grinder, cork; linoleum cork grinder ; cork miller
employed in cork mill of linoleum factory on series of breaking, disintegrating, scalping, milling and dressing machines wherein cork is passed from machine to machine on endless belts or conveyers; may be stationed at one machine, e.g., breaker machine, cf. cork breaker, but usually goes from one machine of series to another, throwing cork into machines, clearing stoppages, removing dirt and waste, bagging finally dressed cork, etc., under direction of head miller (631) q.v.
see cloth cleaner.
hair picker
picks by hand the more valuable white hair from coloured horse or goat hair; cf. bristle picker, hand cleaner, hand trimmer; cleans filled brushes from wood turnings, loose hairs, etc.
attaches handles to brushes by nails or screws.
hanger's mate ; hot room lad, pole carrier, pole catcher
assists hanger (638) q.v., by carrying poles on which linoleum and oilcloth is festooned in hot room or stove; hands poles to hanger, who festoons linoleum on them; catches ends of poles and places in slots in racks.
hay band spinner, hay rope spinner, hay spinner (for moulding cores)
spins or twists hay into a kind of rough rope, to be used in making porous cores, on machine which he feeds and operates, by hand.
hot room hand
see stove worker.
hot room lad (leather cloth)
see hanger's mate.
see parquet layer.
linoleum maker
general term for workers engaged upon making linoleum, and includes mixer, linoleum calender attendant (638), etc. q.v.
linoleum maker's labourer
carries cork, oil, composition, and helps generally.
machine troweller ; brake minder, coater, coverer, driver (leather cloth), edge minder, oil cover dresser, spreader, spreading machine attendant
operates spreading machine in which hessian or other fabric is coated on one side with protective covering of paint and, sometimes, on other side with adhesive, in linoleum or oilcloth making; feeds fabric to rollers beyond which paint flows from pipes, under a knife edge; with a trowel spreads paint evenly over faulty patches on fabric; guides coated fabric to hot stove through which it passes automatically and "beams-up," i.e., feeds material to winding-on roller; where adhesive also applied, repeats spreading operations on reverse side of fabric; starts and stops machine by hand levers; opens and closes cocks to regulate paint supply, etc.; see also hand troweller (638).
mill hand (carbon)
see mixer, carbon.
mixer (brushmaking)
a bass mixer or bristle mixer q.v., or rarely hair mixer, cf. hair hand (638).
mixer, carbon ; mill hand (carbon)
crushes retort carbon into dust in a mill and, attends and feeds mixing pans wherein crushed carbon is mixed with binding liquid prior to being moulded into blocks, rods, etc., for use in dynamos, etc.
mixer, inlay linoleum
see colour blender and dresser.
mixer, cork mixer, daub mixer, linoleum mixer
mixes wood, flour, ground cork, linoleum cement, and colour, by machine fed by charger (linoleum mixing) q.v., producing a "cement" which is spread upon canvas or jute in the manufacture of linoleum; adjusts roller temperature by steam cocks and oils machine.
motor brush maker
as for carbon brush maker.
moulder's black maker
see founder's black maker.
oil baize maker
a machine troweller q.v. engaged in making oil baize by spreading a thickened oil paste upon fabric.
oil cover dresser
see machine troweller.
paint brush finisher, paint brush stamper, paint brush trimmer
performs, after brushes are made, such operations as cleaning handles, trimming bristles, stamping size, name, etc., boxing, papering, labelling, etc.
painter (fishing floats)
paints, with small brush, bands of bright oil colour round cork or wooden floats.
parquet layer ; layer-up
arranges strips of cut linoleum for parquet inlay in patterns to represent wood inlay floorings.
peat moss litter worker
general term for any worker engaged in cleaning, sorting, drying, and baling peat moss (used as litter for animals); cf. peat moss worker (039).
plate holder (leather cloth), plater
see colour spreader's assistant .
pointing hand ; straightening hand
straightens naturally curved bristles, before or after filling into handles of brushes, by binding with string and steaming.
pole carrier, pole catcher (linoleum)
see hanger's mate.
polisher (brushes)
(i) polishes varnishes, or decorates in any way, the brush after it has been shaped;
(ii) see also bone brush polisher (619).
presses loose granular coloured composition, in patterns for granular inlay, on canvas or jute in a hydraulic press, to squeeze them solid and attach to canvas or jute; presses loose sheets of linoleum, built in a block for parquet inlay, in order to squeeze them solidly together for cutting into strips by guillotine; presses parquet pattern arranged by parquet layer q.v. on to canvas or jute so as to attach pattern thereto.
pumice man
see rubber.
punching machine filler, punching machine worker
attends an automatic punching machine, which punches holes in hack of brush for insertion of bristles; positions stocks in machine and pulls lever operating punch.
puttier (fishing floats)
presses, with putty knife, putty into interstices in wooden or cork fishing floats, to ensure water-tightness.
quill cutter
general term covering cutter, quill pen (638), float cap maker, toothpick maker (quill) (638) q.v.
quill rubber (feather dressing)
polishes or smooths quills of feathers by hand with pumice or sand paper.
rubber ; pumice man
rubs painted surface of oilcloth, to make smooth, by means of rotary rollers in which are fixed pumice stones; only carried out on heavy linoleums.
scrap grinder
feeds scraps of waste linoleum into grinding machine to be used again in linoleum making.
scratcher hand (linoleum, etc.)
controls cocks, levers, etc., of machine finally mixing linoleum mixture, and oils machine as necessary.
seasoner attendant ; charger, discharger (linoleum, seasoning)
seasons linoleum in long stove; attaches linoleum to wire and, turning hand roller, draws length of linoleum into stove; with knife and straight edge cuts linoleum when its length fills stove; regulates heat of chamber by steam cocks, guided by thermometer; withdraws seasoned linoleum by wire and hand roller.
shake-up band
(i) a dresser q.v. who hunches and shakes up by hand brush and broom bristles, etc., in the finished bundle so that ends do not present an uneven surface;
(ii) mixes bristles for special brushes, with root ends and points together in equal proportions; this produces a stiffen brush than if roots only are in stock.
siever, bristle siever, sieving hand
passes bristles over a sieve to separate root ends from top ends in process of arranging bristles all one way; usually done by hair hand (638) q.v.
spreader, spreading machine attendant
see machine troweller.
stamper (brooms and brushes)
stamps name of maker, quality, size, etc., of brush, on the stock or handle.
stamper (leather cloth)
(i) stamps particulars of quality trade mark, etc., on back of pieces;
(ii) see grainer.
stencil filler
pours blended granular coloured linoleum composition, for granular inlay, through pattern stencils on to jute or canvas, pulling lever to govern flow of composition; changes stencils and uses different composition as necessary; pulls lever or otherwise starts machine to which he feeds material for annealing.
stone handler
see washer.
stove worker ; drying stove hand, hot room hand
removes finished floor cloth goods from "stove," or hot room, and rolls strips of linoleum on rollers.
straightening hand
see pointing hand.
straw band spinner, straw rope maker (for cores), straw rope spinner
as for hay hand spinner.
straw envelope maker
attends and feeds machine making straw envelopes for covering wine bottles, etc.; places bobbins of jute in machine, threads jute through guides, etc., starts machine by hand lever, and feeds straw, by hand, so that it is twisted up and bound with jute; rare occupation.
straw worker (targets)
makes straw targets by intertwining rushes, straw, etc., on stick foundation to form hack and main body of targets; superimposes rushes, straw7, etc., smoothly over sticks to form smooth face of targets.
tacker ; common finisher
fixes hack of brush to cover wiring of drawn brushes with glue and brass nails or screws.
tank cleaner (floor cloth)
a general labourer who cleans out oil tanks, etc., in floor cloth mill.
see cloth cutter.
varnisher (oilcloth, etc.)
operates varnishing machine which puts a glossy finish on surface of printed or plain oilcloth; guides end of linoleum over bars, etc., of machine to rollers revolving in varnish trough; guides end of varnished linoleum to winding-on roller; operates machine by lever, switch, etc.; maintains varnish supply in trough.
varnisher (brushes), brush varnisher
varnishes brush stocks, heads, or backs.
(i) washes loose horse or goat hair in hot water, containing soap and soda to cleanse hair and remove grease;
(ii) bristle cleaner, stone handler; "stones" bristles, i.e., grinds down root ends, by rubbing them on a lather-covered stone; ties up bristles and places them in hot air chamber to dry; usually done by hair hand (638) q.v. in small factories.

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From: A Dictionary of Occupational Terms Based on the Classification of Occupations used in the Census of Population, 1921,
Ministry of Labour, 1927. Digitised by Peter Christian, August, 2016.   This text is in the Public Domain.