What is CHIPS?

“CHIPS” is a regular informal competition held by the Indiana County Woodturners.  This playful, some would say whimsical, contest has rules … but they are a bit unusual – see below.


The 2023 reorganization of the this site included a change to the method of presenting the monthly CHIPS Competition:

  • Contemporary information for 2023 and beyond is found in The Woodshed, the monthly newsletter.
  • Historical information about CHIPS prior to 2023 is available through the Archive


  1. Pieces must be more that 50% turned – it is, after all, a Woodturners Association
  2. Size Doesn’t Matter.
  3. There are no criteria for voting!  Members vote for what they like, for whatever reason.

    Maple Platter - Chips Entry December 2014 - "Platters"

    Maple Platter – Chips Entry December 2014 – “Platters”


In order to encourage all members to participate, the Chips competition is conducted in two, playfully named, categories; they are Learners and Turners.

  • Learners – This group includes Novice, Beginner, and Intermediate woodturners who are new to turning or simply have not been able to devote enough time to turning to advance to the next level.  They are focused on learning the techniques and skills that support their advancement into the classification Turners.
  • Turners — This group includes Intermediate, Advanced, and Expert woodturners who have progressed and are regularly producing excellent caliber products.

Member Classification

  • Initial Classification – Initially members may self-select the group that is most appropriate for their level of turning.
  • Promotion – Members will be promoted from Learners to Turners if they win the Learner category two times during the last membership year (September through May).

Additional details are frequently published when the new Chips Theme is announced.

Terry Morrill - Chips Winner December 2014 - "Platters"

Terry Morrill – Chips Winner December 2014 – “Platters”

This contest was instituted in the Spring of 2014 by President Daryl Gray. It has been held most months since then.  It has proven to be a successful vehicle to prompt members creativity.  Details about each monthly contest and the winners can be found in The Woodshed, the monthly Newsletter.