Totin' Chip

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Totin' Chip
Totin' Chip equipment emblem.png
Totin' Chip temporary patch
Country United States
Created 1950
Founder John Page, Yawgoog Scout Reservation
Awarded for Demonstrate knowledge of and proper handling, care, and use of the pocket knife, axe, and saw.
 Scouting portal

The Totin' Chip is an award in Boy Scouts of America that shows Scouts understand and agree to certain principles of using different tools with blades.[1] It can be physically represented by a patch or a small paper card. With this, a Scout has the right to carry and use woods tools. A Scout must demonstrate to his Scout leader, or someone designated by his leader, that he understands his responsibility.

The basic principle for blade-use in the Boy Scouts is to use blades only for constructive purposes.

Basic safety rules and requirements for this recognition are:

  1. Read and understand woods tools use and safety rules from the Boy Scout Handbook.
  2. Demonstrate proper handling, care, and use of the pocket knife, axe, and saw.
  3. When not using a blade keep it covered (sheaths, folding knives, etc.).
  4. Use only sharp clean blades, as they are less likely to slip.
  5. When carrying blades, keep them sheathed and keep axe and saw blades at your side with the blade perpendicular to your body.
  6. When passing a blade it must be closed or sheathed. Before you let go the other person acknowledges that they are holding the blade by saying "thank you".
  7. Check to make sure no one is in your blood circle before you use a blade (i.e. No one within your maximum reach with the blade).
  8. When using a knife cut away from yourself, preferably while sitting at a table.
  9. When using an axe, saw, or hatchet wear safety glasses and gloves and ensure that when you cut through the object you will encounter something hard.
  10. Respect property. Only cut dead trees and with good reason. Make sure you have permission before cutting any trees, living or dead.
  11. Subscribe to the Outdoor Code.

A scout is given a Totin' Chip card when he meets the requirements, though can be revoked if he does not handle it responsibly.[2] A Totin' Chip is required for the Woodcarving merit badge.[3]

Although the patch is shaped like a pocket flap, it is not to be worn on the pocket flap. It may be worn as a temporary patch on the right pocket.[4]

See also[edit]

  • Firem'n Chit, a similar award which allows the Scout to build and light campfires, as well as carry matches.


  1. ^ Totin' Chip on Awards Central
  2. ^ Totin' Chip Requirements
  3. ^ Wood Carving Merit Badge Requirements
  4. ^ Boy Scout Insignia, Guide to Awards and Insignia, page 40.

External links[edit]