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Optical Mechanic

VOC Course Subject Prerequisites Traineeship Year 10 Preferred

Also known as Optical Technician.

Optical mechanics make precision optical parts; grind, polish and surface prescription lenses and contact lenses; and fit lenses to spectacle frames.

With further training, optical mechanics may specialise as optical dispensers who measure and fit clients with spectacles. See the separate entry for Optical Dispenser.

Highly skilled and experienced optical mechanics make, repair and service binoculars, telescopes and other scientific optical equipment.


    Optical mechanics may perform the following tasks:

  • read and interpret prescriptions from eye specialists
  • locate and mark optical centres and axes on lens blanks and make calculations to grind lenses to specifications
  • grind and polish the surface of the lens by setting grinding and polishing machines
  • test polished lenses for accuracy
  • apply protective coatings and non-reflective material to lenses and apply heat and chemical treatment to glass lenses to harden them if required
  • shape and fit lenses to spectacle frames
  • repair damaged and broken spectacles
  • cut and polish contact lenses to prescription requirements


  • good eyesight (or correctable by glasses or contact lenses)
  • good hand-eye coordination
  • patient and able to carry out accurate work
  • aptitude for mathematics and physics

Interest Area

Medical Influencing/Personal Contact Manual/Practical


VOC Course Subject Prerequisites Traineeship Year 10 Preferred

To become an optical mechanic you usually have to complete a VOC qualification in optical technology. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You may be able to study through distance education.

You can also become an optical mechanic through an apprenticeship or traineeship in Optical Technology.

Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10.


Most optical mechanics work for optical dispensers and for optical laboratories that do grinding and fitting work. Some also work with optometrists in their dispensing workshop. Nationwide, a few government organisations, such as the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), employ optical mechanics.

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