Dollar Bill Scrollwork Puzzle

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Project by KnotCurser posted 05-30-2011 04:00 PM 3732 views 11 times favorited 24 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I guess you can say that this puzzle actually cost me at least a dollar. That and a scrap piece of walnut.

Inspired by an older project by Steve Good, I glued a dollar bill to a 1/8” thick piece of walnut and free-handed this puzzle – all I did was to snap some very thin chalk lines to keep the rows of pieces straight.

Piece measures ...... for those that don’t use these things on a regular basis ..... 6 1/8” x 2 5/8”

A jeweler’s blade was used on my Dewalt Scrollsaw.

No finish was used as I didn’t want to damage the bill.

45 Pieces and I really liked cutting every one of them!



-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: /

24 comments so far

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9228 posts in 2916 days

#1 posted 05-30-2011 04:17 PM

That looks really cool! People like puzzles. This would be great for a Father’s Day gift!

Sheila :)

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View fritzz67's profile


98 posts in 2901 days

#2 posted 05-30-2011 04:19 PM

very cool costly but cool / now time to do an 100 bill next lol

-- Richie, PA - " from rough cut to fine rustic furniture "

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4611 posts in 3032 days

#3 posted 05-30-2011 04:19 PM

You’re allowed to do that sort of thing?!

I think they hang draw and quarter you for that in the UK, lol.

Nice one Bob.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

View Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)'s profile

Sheila Landry (scrollgirl)

9228 posts in 2916 days

#4 posted 05-30-2011 04:21 PM

I would like to see the $100 bill thingy! (I dare you! LOL)

I just looked up the question Martyn brought to light and here is the results:

(I ain’t tellin! ;) )

-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs ( Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"

View SteveMI's profile


1094 posts in 3290 days

#5 posted 05-30-2011 04:49 PM

There is a site dedicated to scrolling jigsaw puzzles from coins.

His interpretation is as follows;
”If you are thinking this is illegal, your not the first.Section 331. Title 18, U.S. CODE: Prohibits among other things the fraudulent alteration and mutilation of United States and foreign coins. This statute does not prohibit the mutilation of coins if done without fraudulent intent or if the mutilated coins are not used fraudulently. This now Lehman Law was written only to protect the silver content of coins back when coins actually contained silver and the government actually invested in the circulation money.”

My thought is that if it were illegal that website would have been good training for an IRS rookie long ago.

I also wonder about the msnbc person since every community around me has someplace with a sign out front paying 22 times the face value for silver coins. They are obviously buying them to melt.

The website has jigsaw puzzles of US dimes with 12 pieces, pennies with 13 pieces and nickles with 14 pieces.


View spunwood's profile


1202 posts in 2832 days

#6 posted 05-30-2011 07:21 PM

Neat! If you glue the dollar bill in reverse on the other side it will be a one dollar bill puzzle that cost you 2 dollars :)

-- I came, I was conquered, I was born again. ἵνα ὦσιν ἓν

View tomakazi's profile


686 posts in 3279 days

#7 posted 05-30-2011 07:58 PM

very cool puzzle!!! nice job!! we used to put pennies on the railroad tracks and they said we could get in trouble for it. now, at tourist attractions they have machines that press a penny into their logo! Ive also seen Hilary Clinton signing an autograph on a dollar bill, which is also a crime!!

-- I didn't go to college, I was too busy learning stuff - Ted Nugent

View SPalm's profile


5320 posts in 3878 days

#8 posted 05-30-2011 09:29 PM

That is so cool.

I doubt that the US gov minds too much if you pay $1 for a piece of paper which cost them pennies to make and then basically throw it away.

Same thing for all of the quarters with the States on them, the US made a bunch of money on that exchange of 25 cents for a piece of stamped metal.


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View Wes Giesbrecht's profile

Wes Giesbrecht

155 posts in 2807 days

#9 posted 05-30-2011 10:34 PM

Excellent idea!
I wonder, if you did some of these for craft stores, would be legal for them to sell them?
I’m in Canada so it might be different here.
What if we used currency from another country?
Is it illegal for a Canadian to deface an American dollar?
Somewhere, stashed away, I have some beautiful currency from Costa Rica that I picked up back in 1980.

-- Wes Giesbrecht

View KnotCurser's profile


2025 posts in 3065 days

#10 posted 05-30-2011 10:50 PM

For those of you wondering, in the United States it is TOTALLY legal to do what I did. The original law that prohibited the melting of silver and/or gold coins to produce and sell for fraudulent means still stands and I guess can be used against someone. What used to happen was that people would melt down gold coins and use that gold to plate false “gold coins” with a tin or copper interior. That IS illegal.

What I am doing is not fraudulent, nor am I attempting to use this as currency any longer – it’s art.

Oh yeah – it would most certainly be OK to sell this in a craft store. I have seen dollar bills with the face replaced by other famous characters. No problem. Just don’t try to use them as money any more. ;-)

Make sense?


-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: /

View KnotCurser's profile


2025 posts in 3065 days

#11 posted 05-30-2011 11:01 PM

Spunwood, that is such a GREAT idea! I’m going to have to take another bill and glue it and it’s reverse to the other side and try this.

Maybe a five this time…...... That would be a ten dollar investment though…..... Maybe I could sell it for five bucks…....... wait a minute….......

-- Robert Rhoades WoodWorks / Email: /

View Steve Good's profile

Steve Good

96 posts in 3951 days

#12 posted 05-31-2011 03:11 AM

Nice job Bob. When I originally posted that project on my blog I received dozens of email from folks telling me I was going to jail. :) Like you have said it is perfectly legal to alter paper currency as long as there is no attempt to defraud. I also received quite a few email telling me they had better use for a dollar then cutting it up. Hard to argue with that.

-- Steve Good,

View RichardH's profile


295 posts in 2998 days

#13 posted 05-31-2011 03:23 AM

Great puzzle and interesting post. Very clean scroll work. -Richard

-- "It's supposed to be hard. If it wasn't hard, everyone would do it...It's the hard that makes it great."

View Derek1980's profile


31 posts in 2903 days

#14 posted 05-31-2011 04:20 AM

“No finish was used as I didn’t want to damage the bill” really Bob… didn’t want to damage the bill. : )

This makes me think of those machines at tourist attractions that take 2 quarters and a penny then smash the penny into some keepsake token of the location. If you ever read the postings on the machine they site some exemption that makes it legal. I don’t think the Secret Service is after you Bob, at least not for this.

-- Derek

View lanwater's profile


3111 posts in 2930 days

#15 posted 05-31-2011 07:01 AM

Wow this is neat!

I didn’t know there is a jeweler’s blade for scroll saw.

Thanks for the info.

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA

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