Turner of the Year Competition Monday 11th february

The Turner of the Year competition has been running year on year since 2016.  The objective is to provide all our members, regardless of skills and experience, the opportunity to compete fairly with one another. Some of our members have been turning for over forty years whilst others are very new to the craft.  It also provides our old timers with the ability to pass on their tips and skills to the novice. It has been very pleasing to see how members who started in 2016 develop into exceptionally skilled turners. Many of our older members are more than willing to provide the complete novice with one to one tuition. There is no alternative to hands on experience when it comes on using a lathe or presenting tools to the work.

The work submitted on Monday 11th February

Competition charter for 2019

Turner of the Year 2019 Charter

1.  Entering 

a.  All work for entry into the competition will submitted at the Clubs regular monthly meetings.

b.  To allow ample time for the work to be assessed it must be submitted to the judges by 6:45pm.

c.  There are no monthly categories or themes.

d.  All work turned on a lathe can be entered with the exception of pens and pencils.

e.  Pyrography, woodcarving, paint and staining effects may be used, but other embellishments and adornments will be discounted for marking purposes. 

f.  The decision of the judges is final.

g.  2 pieces of work may be entered at each of the following 9 meetings: January, February, March, April, May, June, August, September and October. 

h.  If two pieces of work are entered the top scoring piece will be recorded for that month. 

i.  At the end of October, the top 5 scores will be totalled to give an end of year score and the remaining lowest scores will be dropped from the competition[1].

j.  Results will be announced at the AGM in November. 

2.  Judging 

a. The Competitions Member will number your piece and award 

 i.  Technical Difficulty 0 – 10 Marks

 ii.  Turner Ability Weighting as defined below 

b. The Visiting Turner will judge all submissions during the mid-session interval and award marks for the Craftmanship displayed in the work presented. Craftmanship includes the appropriateness of the design and shape, the finish and presentation of the work and an appreciation of the competitor’s lathe and woodturning skills in producing the work. Craftsmanship points awarded will be from 0 - 10.

c.  The visiting turner will provide feedback and comments on each of the pieces of work submitted.

Weighting Systems

Technical Difficulty Weighting 

Technical difficulty will be determined by the Competitions Member prior to judging. 

The various types of turning fall into different technical difficulty ranges. Most novice turners will attempt the less technically demanding bowls, platters and boxes.  More experienced turners are capable of producing hollow forms and segmented work. Those members who have even greater experience will attempt off centre turning and fine spindle work. This naturally helps to a fairer competition for both new and experienced turners. A beautifully presented bowl made by a novice can score as highly as poorly produced segmented lamp created by an experienced turner. 

Marks will be awarded on the scale of 0 – 10.

Turning Ability Weighting 

Turning ability weighting is a handicap system to be set by the Competitions Member. It will be based on the standard of the first piece entered annually in conjunction with knowledge of the entrant’s ability. Weighting may be adjusted by the Competitions Member at any time during any competition year to reflect improvement in turning ability. The table below provides definitions for weighting awards:


Ability Level 


5-6  Limited

Limited ability e.g. a turner whose work reflects limited tool control, design ability and finishing skills. 

3-4 Developing 

Developing ability e.g. a turner whose work reflects reasonable tool control, design ability and finishing skills.

1-2 Established and consistent 

Established ability e.g. a turner whose work reflects consistency beyond developing ability.

0 Competent 

A competent turner by NLWA standards.

The weighting systems gives new turners and novices the opportunity to compete against seasoned practitioners without the latter taking greater advantage because of their experience. Generally, novices will not attempt segmented, off centre or involuted work until they have become more proficient in the craft. Similarly, such work is usual the province of the more experienced and will be the subject of greater scrutiny by the judges. As novices improve their skills and techniques then their Turner Ability Weighting will start to decrease.