Introduction: Money Maker!

Picture of Money Maker!

Money Maker is not really a money maker, it's a simple illusion that appears to convert a lower denomination bill (or blank paper) into a higher denomination bill. My first Money Maker came in a Magic Kit I received when I was young, and by using it I was able to impress my friends and family with my new found ability to "make money"

As usual, I probably forgot a file or two or who knows what else, so if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask as I do make mistakes in plenty.

Designed using Autodesk Fusion 360, sliced using Cura 3.1, and printed in PLA on an Ultimaker 2+ Extended and an Ultimaker 3 Extended.

Step 1: Parts.

Picture of Parts.

You will need a 20" long by 2 3/4" wide strip of black material (e.g. heavy duty lawn trash bag, cotton, silk, felt, etc.) for the axles.

I printed all parts at .15mm vertical resolution with 20% infill. I printed "Chassis.stl" with supports. I printed "Gear Axle (18 teeth).stl" on a raft to avoid filing the individual gear teeth. Print 2 each of "Axle.stl", "Cap Axle.stl" and "Knob Axle.stl". Print 4 "Gear Axle (18 teeth).stl". Print 1 "Chassis.stl".

Prior to assembly, test fit and trim, file, sand, etc. all parts as necessary for smooth movement of moving surfaces, and tight fit for non moving surfaces. Depending on the colors you chose and your printer settings, more or less trimming, filing and/or sanding may be required. Carefully file all edges that contacted the build plate to make absolutely sure that all build plate "ooze" is removed and that all edges are smooth. I used small jewelers files and plenty of patience to perform this step.

Step 2: Assembly.

Picture of Assembly.

Place two "Gear Axle (18 teeth).stl" into "Chassis.stl" as shown, making sure the hexagonal holes in each gear align with each other. I used a small amount of petroleum jelly to hold the gears in position during this step.

Slide one "Axle.stl" between the two gears as shown, then secure in place with two "Cap Axle.stl".

Place the remaining two "Gear Axle (18 teeth).stl" into "Chassis.stl" as shown, making sure the hexagonal holes in each gear align with each other. Again I used a small amount of petroleum jelly to hold the gears in position during this step.

Slide the remaining "Axle.stl" between the two gears as shown, then secure in place with two "Knob Axle.stl". At this point, make sure the axles and knobs turn freely.

Place two 2 3/4" lengths of tape, one on each end of the 20" strip of material you chose, one facing up and the other facing down. Attach one end of the material to the axle with the knobs as shown, then roll the strip onto the axle until the free end is close to the remaining axle. Slide the free end between the two axles, then secure in place on the remaining axle using the tape strip as shown.

Step 3: Operation.

Picture of Operation.

Preload Money Maker with the bill(s) of your choice. In the first photo, I've inserted a $5 USD bill into the exit side of Money Maker. Once inserted, turn the knob counter clockwise as shown until the bill is entirely inside Money Maker.

Now insert a different bill (I've inserted a $1 USD bill) or blank paper into the entrance side of Money Maker as shown in the third photo, then turn the knob clockwise. As the knob is turned, this bill will wind into Money Maker, and the original bill will exit.

Hope you like it!


Bodragon. (author)2018-01-11

Great trick!

Unfortunately would not work here in UK because the different denominations of notes/bills are all different sizes. This is to aid the visually impaired. I'm surprised that US doesn't also do this these days.

JohnC430 (author)Bodragon.2018-01-16

why surprised? US is still using inches and pounds..... even thought the USD is 100 cents/$1. somewhat stupid i think.

the norm (author)Bodragon.2018-01-12

In Canada there are braille marks on the bills to tell blind people the value.
I knew a blind guy who would fold the bills differently for each denomination (before they had the braille on them), he had a machine that he put the bills threw, and it told what they were, then he folded them. Some folds were length ways, some cross ways, I forget what others were.

It was interesting watching him do this, and then watch him paying for stuff.

igorkholkin (author)the norm2018-01-15

Learn something new everyday! Thanks for sharing.

gzumwalt (author)Bodragon.2018-01-12


You can still use it with a blank piece of paper for input, just cut the paper to the size of the exit bill.

JohnC430 (author)2018-01-12

WOW!!! TAKE $5 AND MAKE $1... Cool idea. i did that with the stock market several times in the past!!! just in bigger doses...

igorkholkin (author)JohnC4302018-01-15

haha the meanest prank on your friends..

J SquaredA (author)JohnC4302018-01-15


misterxp (author)2018-01-11

Very funny party trick ! Thanks for sharing!

gzumwalt (author)misterxp2018-01-11

Thank you, I’m truly glad you enjoyed it!


wdreumel made it! (author)2018-01-11

Works great without any post processing.

gzumwalt (author)wdreumel2018-01-11

Very nice, and in less than 24 hours too!



AbbottF (author)2018-01-11

I'd rather keep earning it. Plus, I get to sleep in my own bed at night.

drejansen (author)2018-01-11

I always thought, there must be something in it!
Now I know, there is real money in it!
Beautiful! Have a nice daygreetings, Dré.

gzumwalt (author)drejansen2018-01-11

Thanks Dré, I'm truly glad you enjoyed it!


sgbotsford (author)2018-01-11

Give one to the Government....<grin>

gzumwalt (author)sgbotsford2018-01-11

You'd have to turn it around for that (e.g. $5 in, $1 out).



biohazarus (author)2018-01-11

I did not read, went straight to the vid... first I wondered what the heck!?!?

But only after realized you were feeding 1$ and getting 5$ out.

(That darn monochrome US money, pref the monopoly/multicolore Canadian) Any how, really cleaver, I like!!!

gzumwalt (author)biohazarus2018-01-11

Thanks, I'm glad you liked it!

I should have recorded the video with a "blank" at the entrance to make it more clear.


JackCarter (author)2018-01-11

nice trick ! gotta make one some day

gzumwalt (author)JackCarter2018-01-11

Thanks, not sure who designed the original, but I've always liked it!

JohnR674 (author)2018-01-11

When I showed the money maker with blank sheet of paper and bill which I was going to copy. I would load the bill and tell them I need to ink the roller and out came blank paper. Then I would take the blank sheet and "print" money. I still have my money maker in it's box. Age of my money maker is over 50 years. Now my grandson likes to show to his friends how he can make money.

gzumwalt (author)JohnR6742018-01-11

I received my first money maker about 50 years ago, and it came with the blank paper. Unfortunately, I no longer have it which is why I designed this one. I'm glad your grandson likes your original money maker!


inconceivable1 (author)2018-01-10

Thats super cool! nice Idea!

gzumwalt (author)inconceivable12018-01-10

Thanks, I’m glad you enjoyed it!

Brokk Hrafnsson (author)2018-01-10

It's ironic that an illegal practice was given to a child in a magic maker set. Still, it's a clever concept. Congrats!

gzumwalt (author)Brokk Hrafnsson2018-01-10

Hmmm, maybe my parents really didn’t like me after all...


About This Instructable




Bio: Formerly the owner of a company that designed software for avionics (EFIS, FMS, etc.) and video games (Tetris, Robocop, Predator, Michael Jordan in Flight, and ... More »
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