Patternmaker / CNC Programmmer

Personal Background Information

Patternmaker / CNC Programmmer

Dean Love,  Patternmaker / CNC ProgrammerThomas Dudley Ltd


  • There’s a lack of engineers in our industry which is a shame as it’s a great career route to follow which can lead to many different job roles.
  • It’s a challenging role which in return can give you great job satisfaction, it’s also financially rewarding.
  • I like working with my hands. Having been a Patternmaker, my new role is a modern, more advanced form of engineering which allows you to be creative. There is also variety as no two jobs the same.
  • It is important to come to work with an ‘enthusiastic and willing to work/learn’ attitude and to be part of a team with people who can guide you as you learn your trade.



My job is to produce tooling for the customer and foundry, programming the CNC and working from engineering drawings to specific tolerances, using various material billets allowing the CNC to cut to produce tooling.

My work place is part office (programming) and part shop floor (CNC machine based).

I work as part of a team which is a great atmosphere to work in.

Key Activities

  • Working from tooling models, processed using Powermill, to generate NC codes
  • Post- processing to the machine using Heidenhain programming
  • Setting up the CNC using an appropriate sized billet to run the programme process

Personal skills 

You need to be able to work on own initiative but equally as part of a team.  You need to get along with the people to create a good working atmosphere.



I took  8 GCSEs at Alexandra High School,  enjoying Design Technology and Art which I wanted to pursue when I left school.  I enjoyed all sports, ran with Tipton Harriers for 6 years and played Sunday morning football for Toll-End FC for many years.



I got a Modern Apprenticeship at 16 at Triplex Foundry with day release at Sandwell College for 4 years where I gained all the qualifications to become a Patternmaker (Patternmaking Part 1, 2, & 3. Foundry Studies Part 1) and also gained NVQ Level 2 & 3 in engineering in-house at Triplex.

After 16 years I took  my current job at Thomas Dudley where I have worked for 5 years. During my time at Thomas Dudley I have done additional software programming courses.