How to print a 3D Google Earth building using Makerbot

Three years ago we showed you a way to have a 3D print of your 3D model made by a company and shipped to you. We’ve also shown you a few other neat 3D model-related tools, such as a way to have a virtual 3D building appear on your desktop through some clever augmented reality.
With the rapid growth of 3D printing in the past few years, it seems likely that more people would want to try printing out their own 3D models. If you’d like to be able to hold your model in your hand, the folks at Instructables have written a tutorial on how to convert a Google Earth model to Makerbot. The instructions also work if you’d like to get your model printed from a service such as Shapeways, Ponoko or TechShop.


The process will require SketchUp and Replicator G, both of which are free downloads. Google Earth is also helpful for this process, but not required. To get started, check out the full post on Instructables. If you print any of these yourself, please send us a picture so we can see how they came out!

About Mickey Mellen

Mickey has been using Google Earth since it was released in 2005, and has created a variety of geo-related sites including Google Earth Hacks. He runs a web design firm in Marietta, GA, where he lives with his wife and two kids.


  1. geologist says:

    the images here show the final printed result of the pictured building:

Leave a Reply