3D Printable 8-bit Piggy Bank




About: "End of line..."


This is a fully functional 8-bit big money piggy bank! My 3yr old daughter need a safe place to keep all her high-stakes rock/paper/scissors winnings. She sat down with me in-front of a clean Sketchup session and we began to construct a piggy bank that Mario would approve of.

Basic 3D printer high level steps (standard for most Printers/Software suites)

1.) Design or download an "STL" file: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/STL_(file_format)

2.) Open said "STL" file in a software suite that slices Gcode: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G-code

3.) Send Gcode to printer for physical object creation

I will attempt to explain my standard workflow in creating 3D prints at home:

1.) I use Sketchup to design my object (.skp)
2.) I make sure the object is "manifold" meaning solid with no holes into the cavity or reversed faces (check my reference below on suggested ruby scripts for Sketchup)
3.) I export the selected object/group in Sketchup then use a ruby script to export the components to a .stl file
4.) I take that .stl file and open it in ReplicatorG (free): http://replicat.org/
5.) I position the object on the virtual build platform and rotate/scale if necessary 
6.) I then generate my Gcode from my specified Skeinforge settings: http://fabmetheus.crsndoo.com/wiki/index.php/Skeinforge (don't let this scare you too much, most 3D printers have templates to utilize)
7.) Once I have my Gcode I click "build" and the instructions are sent via USB to my 3D printer and it begins its extrusion process
8.) Smile knowing you are turning digital designs into actual working physical objects!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

Here is a little bit deeper process you could follow to try out 3D printing for "nearly free": https://www.instructables.com/id/Basic-workflow-for-3D-design-in-Sketchup-and-3D-pr/

8-bit Piggy Bank Instructions:

1.) Print the pig PiggyBank body*

2.) Print the belly pan and tail parts

3.) Slide the pan in from the rear and install the tail

4.) I would say "Profit" for this step but you actually store "Profits" in your new divine 8-bit swine!


I tried to optimize this long print with specific platform orientation and internal break-away support columns* to keep structure integrity but if you know of more efficient ways to design large open volume objects do post back! The Sketchup master file is available below for your own piggy pleasures. I tried different mouths and side body art but decided to upload my 3yr old approved vanilla version for dispersion.

*Once your Pig is done you can hand snap the 2 pillars out of the belly to make room for more delicious coins (or anything else you can fit through the slot)!


This is for the Make It Real Challenge!

Grab the Sketchup master file here: http://www.123dapp.com/skp-3D-Model/8-bit-Piggy-Bank/597684

Oh, and for those making solids (.stl) in SketchUp for 3D printing be sure to add an stl export plugin ( (skp_to_dxf.rb) guitar-list.com/download-software/convert-sketchup-skp-files-dxf-or-stl ) and then export in mm for Gcode creation.  You also really need the ruby script called "Solid Inspector". It makes chasing manifold issues 200 times easier in SU! Pick it up here: forums.sketchucation.com/viewtopic.php?f=323&t=30504 .  There are tons of free ruby scripts for Sketchup out there that totally ROCK!!

If any one is interested I can upload my exported stl's to this instructable for imediate Gcode creation!

Make On!

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    14 Discussions


    5 years ago

    any ideas what 3d printer to buy? im in uk

    Very cute! This would make a great gift.

    You seem to know a lot about 3d printing. Do you recommend the RepRap 'make your own' for a first-time printer?

    2 replies

    I painted and built my Ultimaker (UM1) and had a blast doing it. I also built my MakerBot TOM which was my 1st 3D printer. I can say that building gives you greater knowledge of its workings and thus you can more easily perform maintenance and attempt modifications. You will be more at home troubleshooting issues and will always have the satisfaction knowing you actually built it. However if you just want to get into printing ASAP there are many different units to chose from; this will get you started researching machines: http://3d-printers.toptenreviews.com/


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    You can make it happen for ~$500 if you willing to source parts and build your own: http://reprap.org/wiki/Prusa_Build_Manual or try a new venture that hasn't started shipping just yet but looks promising and very easy setup: http://printrbot.com/

    There are a few others available in the states, I run a Thing-O-Matic from MakerBot Industries in DIY kit form which takes a day or two to build for ~$1,300 but it has recently been replaced by an upgraded version that comes completely pre-assembled for $1,700 and ships out of Brooklyn NY! If you purchase a 3D printer just be ready for sleepless nights as you attempt to print everything you see! It is pretty addicting and my 3yr old loves getting new plastic toys every week! As a matter of fact I will be designing a birthday gift for a friend of my daughters; I take her name in Sketchup, arrange it in 3D space with my desired effect then drop a connection platform under it, manifold the object using a few free Ruby scripts, export it to an stl file, run it through a Gcode slicer and hit print (I uploaded 2 pics from a previous print).

    It may sound like a lot of steps but it isn't that bad. If that scares you there are still tons of free models out there to download and simply print!


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    unfortunately, I'm in the stage of life right between high school and college where every penny is extremely important and even buying a pack of gum is a risky decision. however, I do want to learn more programming (I'm taking a class on C++ at my high school right now), and once I get that down (and money stops being so elusive) I would like to try to build a 3d printer.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for the complement! My 3yr old daughter took the 1st print and locked it up in her display cabinet right after putting her hard earned coins in it! I didn't get much time to review the print so I'm printing another one for further inspection; (prolly have that one taken from me too) lol.


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Dastan, I'm running a MakerBot MK6+ DIY kit which was replaced by the MK7 found here: http://store.makerbot.com/thing-o-matic-kit-mk7.html ; which was also recently replaced by the new Replicator model found here: http://store.makerbot.com/replicator-404.html

    I attached a pic of my 3D printer below. It sits right next to my PC in my office. I have run off 1000+ prints so far and absolutely love being able to rapid prototype at home!

    If you want to see a large portion of my prints check out my G+ posts: https://plus.google.com/i/c7mLNg6AY3I:Z0NVwIvT3qc (ryanematthews)