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Theo
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Awhile back I made a monster truck bank for my grandson. It's OK, but really what I was after. Picture one. So sketched up another one, came out pretty good. But, then I decided to make a big monster truck design, like about 23 3/4" long, and 12" tall. Picture two. Put in a LOT of time on this one, in fact 'finished' it about nine times in all. Printed out a copy, to compare it to my small sketch. Wonder of wonders, the two were very close to the same size, and looks loads better than my first sketch, and totally scaled to my big design.

Years ago I made a very nice wood piggy bank. Spent a huge amount of time and thinking on the inside, around the coin slot, developing a shape that would allow easy removal of change by turning it upside down, and shaking. Well, my now ex-dau-in-law apparently put in a fifty cent piece and wanted to retreive it. Instead of shaking it, she used a electric carving knife to enlarge the hole, effectively ruining a very nice build. I actually made the masters to make another, and had started on it, then decided I didn't like the design that much. So, spent a good amount of time and came up with a design I really liked, 7 1/2" long, about 5 3/4" tall. Then decided I wanted a large version, huge really. It would be about 23 3/4" long, and about 15" tall, which is three time larger, then my present design, plus however wide I finally decide on. The first issue is, I need a larger piece of cardboard to sketch it out on. Second is, to get an accurate scale up, I'll need to make about a 1" graph over my design, then a 3" graph on the cardboard, to accurately scale up the design. I just hope it turns out well. And/or, I may just make a design twice the size of my present design, with 2" graph.

Lesson learned: If I'm going to make more than one size of whatever I design, make the large version first, then by taking a photo and printing it, I will also have a small version, exactly to scale.
 

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John
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where did-she get a fifty cent piece have not seen one in years?
 

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If you don't want DIL ruining them you have two possible choices: 1)Make a trap door for coin removal or 2) Hide her electric carving knife.
Do you paint them, or stain? I'd like to see a finished one.
 

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I'm thinking have the backside screwed on so that the money can be removed .
I also thinking some plexiglass would be neat , maybe have the money go down some internal visible ramps
 

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I have used this free pattern provided by Steve Good to make a couple of plywood scrap piggy banks.

http://www.stevedgood.com/piggybank.pdf

I take the pattern and blow it up to 180% which fills a printed sheet of paper.

It uses four pieces of 3/4" with a piece cut in one for the slot at the top. However, it makes a 3/4 wide slot, which I feel is to wide. I, also, don't like the way the plexiglass screws to the front and back (as I did).

I think that I would substitute a piece of 1/4-1/2" plywood for the slot section and place it between the two inner sections. In addition, I would consider routing out an inset on the inside of the two outside pieces and mount the plexi on the inside. I would, also, use a thicker plexi. At the time it is what I had available.

If I make the make the mods I will have to integrate a means to empty the bank.

This is basically what it looks like.
 

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no wonder she's your EX-DIL...
 

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Theo
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Discussion Starter #8
You can get 50 cent pieces at a bank. Also 1.00 dollar coins, 2 dollar bills, etc. I've got a few 50 cent pieces stuck away.

The bank will have a piece in the bottom to get to the coins.

I don't finish these at all, I figure the new owner can decorate them as they want.

Plexiglass does not float my boat at all.

I make my own designs - do a lot of research beforehand, but don't work with plans by other people.

Yeah, she is not the biggest people person in the world.

Found cardboard for my biggest piggy bank design. The back of the cardboard I have the monster truck bank on. I'll have to make a graph on it, and go from there. When I finish it, or before, I will be able to just layout the truck design on wood. But the pig will need to be cut out, and traced around. I may use the other piece of cardboard to make a intermediate size pig, still undecided on that, don't know if I want to do the extra work or not.
 

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Theo, is she the same one that kept trying to cut hot dogs on your tablesaw?

Just kidding,

Otis Guillebeau from Auburn, Georgia
 

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If she'd wanted to cut hotdogs on my saw, doubt I'd have tried to talk her out of it.

Well, have the monster truck design in my bedroom, where I can see it first thing in the morning, and last thing at night. Haven't made any changes at all on it in days and days, so I'd say it is good to go. I'll be putting an opening in the bottom, with only one bolt, similar to picture 1.

Picture 2 is the piggy bank I designed. Looked at again after the truck design, and it wasn't quite what I wanted, so redo, picture 3. Turned out that didn't hack it, so redid that, picture 4. You can see the 1" graph lines I put on it so I could upscale it to twice size. Picture 5, is the double size design, you can see the 1" graph lines if you look close. It came out almost perfect scale, except for one line on the front that needed to be about 1/4" further forward. Then I notice that the snout was not quite right, but it was scaled to the small design, so had to redo that on both designs. Got the 3" graph laid out on another piece of cardboard, and hope to get to that in a day or two. I've found this a quite accurate way to scale up a design, with minimum fuss; figure it would down scale also, but no need to try that. Same method I used in scaling up 2 or 3" tall photos, into 48" tall reindeer patterns - don't recall what size graph I used, but quite possible 1/4" and 4", respectively.

Been way too involved with life lately to get back in the shop, and at this point, can't really say when I will. Hot water went out 2 days ago, need to jump my Jeep first start of the day, no idea what is happening with that, nor were the techs able to find anything. Fortunately for me, just got one of those little jump box starters, and it works like a charm, small enough to keep in the glove box if wanted even. Then there's the big issues. Bah. Humbug. Could be worse.
 

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Couldn't figure out anyway to edit, so where I said 1" graph lines on the intermediate size pig, should be 2".

OK, laid out the 3" graph lines for the BIG pig, and got it pretty well laid out. Didn't lay it out quite as planned, so had to tape a strip of cardboard along the top. But, all in all, came out quite accurate. Got to go over it in a couple of places where I was looking in the wrong place apparently when I sketched out those lines. That, and will need to take off about 1/8" from the legs, and 1/4" or so from the bottom of the body, that will shorten the whole thing just enough to fit the cut wood. I thought about an intermediate size truck bank too, but decided against it. But eventually there will be three pig banks. I saved some photos when I was researching pig ears, to change my design. When I got thru I discarded at least two dozen pictures - I do a lot of researcing.

I don't know if I'll be posting any photos in the foreseeable future of any of this. My computer has taken it upon itself to not post all of the photos I have saved. It allows access to all of them, after a fashion, but posting them is mostly a no-no. Can't spare the money for a new computer just now, so looks like there won't be any photos posted for awhile. And just now the damn thing sent me to another page, just fortunate it didn't discard any of this.
 

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Still learning. Among other things I learned I like cardboard for when I upsize
one of my designs. I can hold it at any angle, sketch on it, use masking tape
to cover errors, can't do any of that with paper. I make my final lines with
dry erase fine point pens, and found they work just as well as magic marker felt
tip pens, and cost significantly less. I started both my pig and monster truck
bank design on 8X11 1/4" graph paper, love that stuff.

The pig on paper is just right, so that's ready to glue onto wood, and cut out,
making a master to make my masters with. What that means is, the master master
has the ears, snout etc., on it, so I'll make that perfect. Then I'll use that
to rout out my three actual working masters. On one I'll take off the ears,
feet, tail, and snout - that will be the master for the outsize piece, but I
will also cut out the center, as this will also be the master for the inner
spacers. The next one in will have the snout and tail removed, leaving the ears
and feet. And the third will have the feet and ears taken off, leaving the
snout and tail. And, if I screw one of these up, I will have the master master
to rout out another. It's nowhere near as complicated as it probably sounds. I
decided that I'd go for a middle size pig, about 15.5" long, and a large pig,
23.5" long. Later found out that both of the drawn out designs on cardboard are
a bit shorter than I had planned. Don't really know how that happened, but very
simple to fix. I'll be cutting the designs out, laying them on wood, trace
around them, then cut them out. To lengthen them all I will need to do is mark
out 23.5", move the pig's rear up to one line, trace half of the pig, then move
the front up to the other line, again trace half the pig. Then just go over the
lines and sketch the joint by hand. No problem.

I was going to just make a small monster truck bank, nicely done on graph paper.
Then decided to go with a big one, 23.5" again. Found out I have that one 1/4"
too tall, and a tad short. Again, simple fix. Then decided to go for a middle
size too. The middle size one is laid out on graph paper, surprisingly simple
to do, and because the paper is shorter than my bank, the design is too short.
Again, this will be extremely simple to make right on the wood.

So I wound up with three pig sizes, and three monster truck sizes. Neat. I had
a cut list I have been using for years, that worked well for me. But when I was
deciding my bank sizes found that cut list wouldn't work on these. But
surprisingly, all I had to do was change the cut widths by 1/4", and came out
perfect. However, there is always a however, found out that both the big pig,
and the middle size, truck will take wood 11 7/8" wide, while the cut list will
be 9 3/4".

I have the feeling that the little pig will be the moneymaker, can make a fair
number out of a sheet of plywood, and sell them relatively inexpensively. The
big pig now, that will take a whole sheet of plywood to make one, at 10" wide,
and I'm going to have to ask a goodly amount for them if I want to make any
profit. I figure I'm going to make at least one, just for the fun of it. I'm
still trying to figure out how much the capacity would be, and think it will be
about 6 gallons of mixed coins. If so, that should be around at least $2000 in
coins, at something like 300 lbs, if I recall right.

Speaking of mixed coins, I got curious about how much my banks would hold. So
went to google. It is amazing how many people who supposedly have advanced
degrees are really stupid. A lot of them go by the volume of individual coins,
the volume of a gallon, then figure out how many mixed coins will fit in a
gallon, without allowing for spaces between the coins. Plus, they don't actually
know how many different coins there would be. Then there are others who do not
include pennies, others do not include quarters. Estimates of how much a gallon
of mixed coins would be varied from around $200 to $800+. All of this from
people who tried to push their intelligence out there. Hah.

Well, I'm checking the results myself, still ongoing. Found out there are 128
oz in a gallon, which divides by 8. Cut a plastic cup to hold 8 oz. So far
I've counted out three 8 oz cups of mixed coins, from my change I get every day.
First cup was $20.42, second was $23.09, and the third was $16.52, for an
average of $19.99. Interesting difference between results, because I tried to
fill each cupful exactly the same, or as close as reasonable. I'll be doing
several more cups, to see if the average holds, or changes. Some of the
"Einsteins" thought the totals would be the same every time, amusing. If my
average holds, then a gallon of mixed coins should be around $319.84. Still
working on weights.
 

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I recently converted near a gallon of coins to $417 to kickstart my band saw fund.

Thanks for the discussion of how you design your projects. I have an 11x17 pad of 1/4 inch grid that I like to use, along with a cheap set of plastic drafting tools. I like to draw several views on the same sheet. It helps work out dimensions. I have found that getting the outside dimensions can be based on a design, but the interior parts must be hand fitted most of the time, and that is often done with a very sharp block plane. Cut a little oversize and shave a little at a time to fit.

I have not yet fiddled with design software, but it is interesting to see the projects designed on it by some of our members.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I recently converted near a gallon of coins to $417 to kickstart my band saw fund.

Thanks for the discussion of how you design your projects. I have an 11x17 pad of 1/4 inch grid that I like to use, along with a cheap set of plastic drafting tools. I like to draw several views on the same sheet. It helps work out dimensions. I have found that getting the outside dimensions can be based on a design, but the interior parts must be hand fitted most of the time, and that is often done with a very sharp block plane. Cut a little oversize and shave a little at a time to fit.

I have not yet fiddled with design software, but it is interesting to see the projects designed on it by some of our members.


Yeah, no way do I consider my gallon $ figure as actually accurate, too many
variables for that. Depends on where you buy, what you buy, how many you buy,
then what change you get. Still, I think it's interesting enough to measure out
a few more cups, and get the average.

No prob, I'm so used to how I do things, sometimes I wonder if I explain things
clearly to others. Where'd you get the pad? The only size I've found is 8X11,
would love to have a larger pad. The only tool I use, besides a mechanical pan
and a good eraser, is a ruler. I can measure by counting the squares, but it's
usually faster with a ruler. Any curves I sketch freehand. If my page has room
for more than one sketch, it gets it. All my stuff, the interior is empty,
they're banks after all. For those I just put in the wall thickness, 1/2", or
3/4", depending on how I feel at the moment. The inside of the master master is
the only one I am actually concerned with, the inside of it is taken down to the
inside line, and smoothed, so the walls are the same all around. Then when I
make a copy, I just drill a couple of holes in the inside, rough cut with a
sabre saw, tack the master down, and rout the inside of the copy; comes out
identical to the master. Manual CNC. LOL

My design software is my brain. To me, design software would pretty much take
the fun out of it all for me. But when I start a new project, I do a heap of
googling images of whatever. Right now I just googled a load of eagles, with
banner, and shield. I posted a picture of the iggle I did years ago, and think
it would make a great house number sign. Dunno yet if I'll just copy it, or
take a bit from an eagle I found, a bit from another, and so on. I pretty much
copy an occasional photo, drawing them out, but drawings I only use for
inspiration, and don't copy them. Supposedly if you make seven changes in a
drawing, then it is considered new work, and not copying someone elses. Doesn't
quite work that way with me, last I checked, I had eleven changes from one of my
inspirations, and you couldn't even tell what the original work was. Actually,
it was from a photograph of a Northwestern Indian, taken in about 1911 or so.
Sure didn't turn out anything like his picture, that's for sure. He'll become a
five foot tall cigar store Indian bank, once I get a few technical details
ironed out.

Been thinking too much. Was wondering how I'd get the 7" wheels I'd decided would be good for my big monster truck bank. Got a 6 1/4" hole saw, so finally figured I'd have to go with that. Then it hit me, rough cut a circle, drill a hole in the center, bolt thru the hole, electric drill, power sander, and I can make a master whatever size I want. No prob on wheels now. Then it hit me how to make a very simple 'panel saw'. But not a lot of shop room, so may have to make a short version, 48", but that's no problem, because anymore I would have major issues trying to handle a full sheet of plywood anyway. Then it hit me that I could use the center cutout from my big pig, and use it to make the middle size pig, then the inside of the middle pig, to make small pigs. Been pondering the bottom hole of the banks to get the money out, was figuring I'd need to make a master to get the right size, which would be a bit of a PITA. But then I realized, I could just use the piece I will be cutting out anyway, and can use it; another step or two done away with.

I've made kid's puzzle rocking chairs for years; just now remodding the arms. Awhile back ran across a picture of a arts and craft rocker, from around the 1900-1920 period, and decided to make an adult size puzzle rocker. The kid chair is 1/2" plywood, and is very strong, I can stand on the seat and it doesn't even creak. Figured the adult chair will need at least 3/4" plywood, so the first one I make will be from 3/4" plyood, and will be making a 1" thick master for this. Problem is, I also want to make a wider one, for those endowed with really wide hips, so the 3/4" may not be sufficient. Problem found, problem solved, if the 3/4" won't cut it, will go to two layers of 1/2" plywood glued together, and it will be only a minor issue to change the slots on the master from 3/4" to 1", just need to be careful with my cutting.

CNC? CNC? Don' need no steenkin' CNC. :laugh2: Gads, I do like woodworking.
 
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Discussion Starter #16
I'll just stick to freehand, a lot faster and easier to make changes. Plus, I don't know how those work, and don't really care. One thing I found tho, what what I consider the ultimate eraser. Some years back I wanted to make some custom rubber stamps, so went shopping for appropriate material. This seemed like the best buy. Speedball Speedy-Cut Carving Blocks - BLICK art materials Well, it crumbled when I went for really fine detail. Bah. But somehow I used a piece as an eraser. Fantastic. By the time you get a sheet cut to eraser size it is so much cheaper than buy even medium quality erasers from a store, and work so much better than the expensive erasers. I gave a container of them to my grand-daughter, she's into art and drawing, and kept enough to probably last me thru my next half dozen reincarnations. Oh yeah, got several option I will be trying for stencils later on that should give me all the detail I need.

Figuring out a glue up jig for my banks just now. I know what I want, but I also want it to tip back, which is not a problem. The issue is, to get it to tip to the end at the same time. I can hack it, but want something a bit more 'classy' than a hack. Once I get the pieces cut out, the jig should hold them in proper alignmen while the glue sets, and supposedly will ghen require minimal sanding for a smooth finish.

Speaking of gluing, some of my project I don't bother clamping, just set them down, with a weight on top to provide pressure, and have been known to not use even a weight. Have never had a glue problem. Only have a limited supply of weights tho. This hit me the other day. Could use a piece of plywood as a base, then several more layers of plywood. Waste of good plywood tho. Instead, I'll use a plywood base, then glue a layer of small pieces of plywood, the ones that would normally be tossed. Put them together at the edge, then rout to mach the base. Repeat with the small pieces, until I get enough layers to give me the weight I want. Right now using them in a weight is the only use I can think of, but I am pretty sure I'll come up with something else to use them for too.
 

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I have really got to get on top of things, and get in some shop time. But there's so much to get on top of, seems like a losing battle. I've gotten so bonkers since I designed my three monster truck banks, and pig banks, small, medium, and two footers, I'm seriously considering designing a four foot version of each. Even worse, starting to think about making one of them my first priority once I do get back in the shop. I've got it figured out that if I do the monster truck at four foot, to do it 'right' it will take five full sheets of plywood, and the pig will take six full sheets. Granted, it will give lots of usable pieces of lefetover plywood, but even so, it will cost probably at least $170 to make one, and to make money on one I'd have to sell for probably around $300. I really need to stick to the small versions, but it is so tempting to make a four foot piggy bank. Hehehe :grin:
 

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Trouble. Been thinking again. Figured out that with my medium size pig bank, I can use the cutout inside to make three small pieces for either my small pig, or small truck. Got to thinking more, and figured out how with a minimum of tweaking, mostly making slightly smaller versions of the pig and truck, I can now get four pieces.

That's great, but then it struck me that if I make either of those out of a 'new' piece of plywood, I will be generating a lot of pieces that aren't banks. And that means I will have to retain my old small bank plans too. Which means I will have four masters for each type of bank, and five each, if you count the four foot version I am thinking of. I realllly need to get in the shop again.
 

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Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
OhhhKay. I really, really, need to get out in the shop soon. Looking at my designs and deciding what needed to be tweaked, noticed something. My plywood will be sliced into four foot lengths, 9 7/8" wide, and 11 7/8" wide, which will allow me to use just those two sizes for all my pig and truck designs. But the old small designs were not quite the right size to cut out without wasting more wood than I wanted to lose. Back to thinking. The end result is, I now have five piggy bank designs, and five monster truck designs. This does NOT include the two four foot designs I am pondering. I want to sell these banks eventually, so looks like I'll have to make one of each size, of each type, total of ten banks, to see how they look, and see which are popular with people, meaning saleable. I really need to concentrate more, a lot more, a whole lot more, on getting my outside things solved or sorted out, and get back in the shop. I've got enough plywood stock to last me for awhile, and should be wide enough for the wider designs, and I'll just have to swallow losing the extra stock from the narrower designs; altho I will likely be saving it, as I believe I will have a use for it later. Fortunately, well actually I planned it this way, the only piece of each master that has to be really good, is just the first piece. All the other pieces will be routed out and tweaked as necessary, to make perfect clone copies.

Almost forgot. Now need to figure out how thick each bank size will need to be, to keep it looking good, and still as much in scale as reasonable. The smallest banks will be four inches wide, which means each one will take eight pieces of 1/2" plywood to come up with the four inches. I figure that will look good, the coin area will be three inches wide, which will allow a three inch long slot for coins, that is wide enough to take bills too. I really don't want to make any the same width, but also need to take into account just how many inches I can make it, and not having to use a whole lot of wood to make it look good. Right now I'm thinking I may have to rout the piece out, then set them together to visualize just how they look with different numbers of pieces. That's Plan B right now, still working on Plan A.
 

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Well, still working on getting in some shop time. But in the meantime, I'm having fun. First I tweaked my designs, then fine-tuned them. I over tuned them maybe, because now I have eight truck designs, of different lengths, and eight for the pig designs. From 6.5" by 3.75" to 47.5" by 23.5". The great thing about these two designs is, it is extremely easy to upsize, or downsize, the designs. I don't actually intend to make at least one of each size, but it has been interesting designing them. Instead I figure I will make two, possibly three, pig banks, likely no larger than 15.75" by 9.25", and the same number truck banks, no larger than 15.75" by 6.5"; possibly a few inches less..

I think the pig is a nice design, but in the real world I'm thinking that the monster truck will sell better. I checked prices on Etsy, for similar items, and I was astonished at the prices asked, overall considerably higher than I would ever consider asking for my work. Just because something is handmade, doesn't mean it's worth more, but some people seem to think so. Right now I'm thinking maybe $20-25 for my 15.75" pig, and a few $ more for the truck - the truck uses more material, and more labor time. The smaller ones will be a bit less. But if someone ever wants either 47.75" bank, it will cost them big time; loads of material, and I'm thinking considerable labor time. Even the 23.5" ones will call for a pretty stiff cost. But, who knows, I would definitely like to make a 2, 3, or 4 foot bank, just for the Hell of it.
:grin:

Oh yeah, I'm thinking of leaving them unfishished, and if the new owner wants them decorated or painted, they can do it themselves. Optionally, I'm thinking of finished them with thinned layers of Titebond II, which probably won't take paint well at all, but magic workers work excellently.
 
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