Video: How 3-D printers will make magazine-capacity limits obsolete

posted at 4:01 pm on February 19, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

I’ll admit to being a rube about 3-D printing technology, and its implications for issues like gun control and other kinds of restrictive laws on devices, so this video from the Washington Post is an eye-opener for me.  Travis Lerol builds a receiver for his AR-15 semi-automatic rifle in the convenience of his own home, or at least the casing for it; some of the other components have to be bought separately.  None of those are restricted — yet, anyway — and the only issue preventing people from creating their own high-capacity magazines for their firearms is just the need for a design:

It might be possible to build the weapons themselves, although the technology for that would still require significant contributions of components other than plastic:

Twenty minutes into his State of the Union address last week, President Obama entered the realm of uber-geekery — three-dimensional printing. The magical devices capable of printing prosthetics, violins and even aircraft parts have the potential, the president said, “to revolutionize the way we make almost everything.”

Forty miles away from the Capitol, in Glen Burnie, Md., Travis Lerol is proving Obama’s point — with guns. …

Though printing guns is a craft still in its infancy — Lerol hasn’t tested his parts yet at a gun range — technology experts, gun rights proponents and gun safety advocates say the specter of printable firearms and ammunition magazines poses a challenge for Obama and lawmakers as they craft sweeping gun-control legislation.

One controversial idea, pushed by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), is to outlaw high-capacity magazines. But some proponents of 3-D printed guns have already made high-grade plastic replicas.

“Obviously, that has to be one of her nightmares,” said Larry Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America, a lobbying group opposed to additional restrictions. “If her ban was to pass and this technology moves beyond its infancy, Dianne Feinstein is going to have a bit of a challenge.”

Custom-made firearms aren’t exactly new, but precision is difficult to achieve.  Not any more:

Making guns for personal use has been legal for decades, but doing so has required machining know-how and a variety of parts. With 3-D printers, users download blueprints from the Internet, feed them into the machine, wait several hours and voila.

Attempting to revive the 1994 assault-weapons ban ignores the lack of impact it had on gun violence, a point made repeatedly since its 2004 expiration and the subsequent annual decline in overall gun deaths and the small percentage of those related to rifles of any kind. It’s politically and statistically obsolete — and now it’s close to being technologically obsolete, too.  Perhaps government should focus on the criminals and the crime rather than on the legal possessors of firearms in the future.

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DO WANT!

Neat stuff.

TX-96 on February 19, 2013 at 4:07 PM

It’s not about gun control, it is about registering all gun owners into a national registry so the government can come after the owners whenever it wants…always dripping the fear of big brother coming because you own a gun.
And then they will make sure to do a tax audit on all people that own certain guns…

albill on February 19, 2013 at 4:08 PM

It’s easy to get around the law limiting the capacity of magazines. Just call them clips, and then load as many bullets as you want into them. The law doesn’t say anything about clip capacity, right?

The Rogue Tomato on February 19, 2013 at 4:09 PM

How do you hack ‘low information’ voters?

rayra on February 19, 2013 at 4:09 PM

And 3-D metal printing is coming as well.

http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/143552-3d-printing-with-metal-the-final-frontier-of-additive-manufacturing

sharrukin on February 19, 2013 at 4:11 PM

If you can make a plastic part, you can convert that into a mold to make a metal part.

astonerii on February 19, 2013 at 4:12 PM

Funny that you just posted this Ed. I just finished watching some Cody Wilson vids. Dude’s very smart. Wish I had the money to contribute to his project.

WhatSlushfund on February 19, 2013 at 4:14 PM

one of my good friends is the head marketing director for makerbot. We talk about this stuff all the time

johnnyboy on February 19, 2013 at 4:15 PM

If you can make a plastic part, you can convert that into a mold to make a metal part.

astonerii on February 19, 2013 at 4:12 PM

Yup.
But what’s hilarious about this when added to the Colorado move to ban magazines over 15 rounds is LOTS of those magazines are already made in plastic – a lot of them by Magpul – a Colorado based company.
So basically, the Colorado legislature is going to try to run Magpul out of business – or at least out of Colorado – and they will be replaced by 3D printers that people can use to make their own 30 round magazines – without violating the Dems stupid law.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:16 PM

Slow to the gate but better late than never. Floatingrock will be so happy. Finally. ; )

Bmore on February 19, 2013 at 4:17 PM

Floatingrocks favorite vid. Feinsteins lunch.

Bmore on February 19, 2013 at 4:18 PM

It might be possible to build the weapons themselves, although the technology for that would still require significant contributions of components other than plastic:

It’s not just 3D printing Ed … it’s 3D printing PLUS CNC machines. CNC machines fabricate parts from metal brah.

HondaV65 on February 19, 2013 at 4:18 PM

I’d like to think at some point the Ruling class and their control vehicle of choice…..the Fed Gov….could become obsolete.

Possum Holler is ready.

PappyD61 on February 19, 2013 at 4:18 PM

Electron Beam Freeform Fabrication EBF3 …

As soon as this tech is out there it’s CHECKMATE in the gun control debate and all the gun grabbers get to go home crying.

http://www.nasa.gov/topics/technology/features/ebf3.html

HondaV65 on February 19, 2013 at 4:21 PM

Had a trust fund neighbor that had every kind of tool in his shops on his property. He could machine any part with his manually operated lathe/drill/whatever machine. Then he found a place in Michigan that was getting rid of a few automated ones. He could take a machined part and set it up on a pedestal that turned and measured it and then have that part duplicated out of a hunk of steel, aluminum, wood or whatever.

We do live in amazing times in this regard.

DanMan on February 19, 2013 at 4:23 PM

And 3-D metal printing is coming as well.

http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/143552-3d-printing-with-metal-the-final-frontier-of-additive-manufacturing

sharrukin on February 19, 2013 at 4:11 PM

That’s bad a$$. Great link!

WhatSlushfund on February 19, 2013 at 4:23 PM

CNC machines fabricate parts from metal brah.

Must be what I was looking at.

DanMan on February 19, 2013 at 4:25 PM

So basically, the Colorado legislature is going to try to run Magpul out of business – or at least out of Colorado – and they will be replaced by 3D printers that people can use to make their own 30 round magazines – without violating the Dems stupid law.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:16 PM

My mistake – mere possession is illegal if you did not already have it prior to the effective date of the law, ad if you manufacture one, it must have a serial number and some other markings.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:26 PM

3D printed Mag good for 342 rounds, Defense Distributed calls it the “Cuomo”
http://gunwatch.blogspot.com/2013/02/3d-printed-mag-good-for-347-rounds.html

The video of the test and even the article by wired.com have been reported blocked by various sites.

The design is not available at the site that Defense Distributed has set up for “The Island of Misfit Objects” or DEFCAD .

Colbyjack on February 19, 2013 at 4:27 PM

Well, this is obviously racist. Poor, black, inner-city yutes are not able to afford these kinds of printers, so they are at a major disadvantage.

We should immediately create a grant program to provide the less fortunate with assistance in acquiring a printer. “Get your ‘bama-printer here! It’s free!!!”

gregbert on February 19, 2013 at 4:29 PM

It is already possible, and perfectly legal, to build your own firearm. AR receiver blanks, 80% finished, and stamped but unfinished AK-type receivers are available and unregulated, as are parts kits that include every single part except the receiver.

It would take skill and patience to build a receiver from those 80% finished blanks, but it certainly can be done. I know of at least one machine shop that will rent its CNC machinery and the programming required to complete the AR receiver. All perfectly legal, as long as the builder operated the equipment to build his own receiver. Could also be done starting from a block of metal.

AR receivers do not contain pressure, they only hold the parts together. If a plastic receiver can be made cheaply and reliable for a few hundred rounds, it becomes very practical and impossible for the government to regulate effectively.

novaculus on February 19, 2013 at 4:29 PM

Must again quote Rush (the rock band not Limbaugh):
“big shots try to hold it back, fools try to wish it away”

That line was originally about nukes – but very relevant to this issue – and nearly everything the dreamworld utopian libtards try to do.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:33 PM

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:26 PM

How would they know you manufactured it after the effective date of the law?

chemman on February 19, 2013 at 4:33 PM

The island of misfit objects
http://defcad.org/

New 3-D Printed Rifle Magazine Lets You Fire Hundreds of Rounds
http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2013/02/printed-magazine/

Colbyjack on February 19, 2013 at 4:34 PM

For a working magazine, you’d still have to buy the spring. Until they come up a real Star Trek replicator, I don’t quite see the printer as capable of creating THAT.

Archivarix on February 19, 2013 at 4:35 PM

Hmmmmmmmmmm……………

now where are those blue-prints for FemBots!
(sarc)

canopfor on February 19, 2013 at 4:35 PM

Old newz.

The Donks have been 3-D printing voters and ballots for years.

Bruno Strozek on February 19, 2013 at 4:36 PM

Simple, Ban 3D printers, or require crushing regulations. You don’t go into the totalitarian business halfway.

rrpjr on February 19, 2013 at 4:37 PM

Lowers in plastic is not a good idea and hardly serviceable at this point in time.

Now, if you could make them from a strong enough resin or plastic amalgam of some kind, then your on better footing.

You can make a lower from plastic and slap an upper on it for a photoop, but there’s a reason you’re not seeing them on the range.

The guys who are working on the mag issue are doing yeomanry work, though.

Additionally as for using the plastic part for making a mold, you could but its still impractical for the average person. There aren’t many around who practice smelting at home, not on a scale to produce product of this caliber. He’ll, pouring your own lead bullets (casting) is a pain in the ass.

Of course all of this is predicated on today. In ten years…?

This is simply to whip up hysteria, just like the ‘plastic’ gun fable from the late 80s

catmman on February 19, 2013 at 4:37 PM

How would they know you manufactured it after the effective date of the law?

chemman on February 19, 2013 at 4:33 PM

They won’t, naturally. That’s just another non sequiter of this whole BS gun control scam. I’ve got a couple dozen 30 round mags already, so if I had access to a 3D printer and printed up another 20 identical to the ones I have, they couldn’t prove I didn’t have them before the law.

Besides, my County Sheriff has previously said he will not enforce any law that violates the 2nd Amendment.
http://shr.elpasoco.com/

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:37 PM

Last year, a cousin of mine said he could make a 3D printer for about $300 in parts. I was shocked. Now, I’m wishing I’d said, “Show me.”

Fallon on February 19, 2013 at 4:39 PM

For a working magazine, you’d still have to buy the spring. Until they come up a real Star Trek replicator, I don’t quite see the printer as capable of creating THAT.

Archivarix on February 19, 2013 at 4:35 PM

No, but then they haven’t tried banning the manufacture, sale or possession of springs – yet – and they’re readily available and cheap from any hardware store. More proof of the idiocy of this whole farce.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:39 PM

With regard to the 3D printed 30 round AR-15 magazine that is available for DL, the only part that can’t be printed is the spring. I believe that a suitable spring is probably not that hard to make at home even without expensive machine shop tools. Assuming such a video does not already exist, if somebody were to make a YouTube video titled something like, “How to make a spring for a 3D printed magazine without expensive machine tools”, that would be a good companion to the 3D printed magazine videos.

Here are some ideas how it might be done from an earlier thread.

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 4:40 PM

Last year, a cousin of mine said he could make a 3D printer for about $300 in parts. I was shocked. Now, I’m wishing I’d said, “Show me.”

Fallon on February 19, 2013 at 4:39 PM

It’s not too late….
I’d sure be talking to him now.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:41 PM

So how long until I can get “Earl Grey, hot.”

I mean once we get to that stage, I plan on skipping the whole gun, magazine, bullet thing.

My phazer won’t have a stun setting.

Lily on February 19, 2013 at 4:41 PM

It is already possible, and perfectly legal, to build your own firearm. AR receiver blanks, 80% finished,..

novaculus on February 19, 2013 at 4:29 PM

I’ve got one on order, but even those are on massive backorder right now. This is how crazy things have gotten. On the upside, we now have the most armed citizenry in the entire world. And it’s only going to accelerate.

WhatSlushfund on February 19, 2013 at 4:42 PM

The Obama Reich may finally have to address the border issue thingy once Constitutionally permitted but banned by Ogabe Just-Us but we’re gonna defend ourselves anyway gun “importation” starts happening.

viking01 on February 19, 2013 at 4:44 PM

So how long until I can get “Earl Grey, hot.”

I mean once we get to that stage, I plan on skipping the whole gun, magazine, bullet thing.

My phazer won’t have a stun setting.

Lily on February 19, 2013 at 4:41 PM

I like the way you think.
I already drink Earl Grey, so give me a cup of that along with a phaser and a light saber (for close quarters action).

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:45 PM

Well, this is obviously racist. Poor, black, inner-city yutes are not able to afford these kinds of printers, so they are at a major disadvantage.

We should immediately create a grant program to provide the less fortunate with assistance in acquiring a printer. “Get your ‘bama-printer here! It’s free!!!”

gregbert on February 19, 2013 at 4:29 PM

Naw. Just give them EBT cards that they can take to Kinkos so they can print their parts there . . .

tpitman on February 19, 2013 at 4:46 PM

The Obama Reich may finally have to address the border issue thingy once Constitutionally permitted but banned by Ogabe Just-Us but we’re gonna defend ourselves anyway gun “importation” starts happening.

viking01 on February 19, 2013 at 4:44 PM

If Colorado goes through with the ban, and Magpul moves out, perhaps to Texas, I can see the tourist trade shifting. There will be lots of Colorado tourists heading to Texas for “vacation” and coming back with boxes of magazines.

Well hey by making lots of drugs illegal, they’ve completely stopped the flow of those drugs into the US didn’t they?
Ya right. So in the near future expect the drug cartels to diversify into the high capacity magazine business. Every bail of MJ will have a box of magazines tucked inside.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:51 PM

Last year, a cousin of mine said he could make a 3D printer for about $300 in parts. I was shocked. Now, I’m wishing I’d said, “Show me.”

Fallon on February 19, 2013 at 4:39 PM

Stepper motors and geared or guide-wired rails, a microcontroller or two, a few optoelectronic sensors, some software here and there and a USB interface….

viking01 on February 19, 2013 at 4:51 PM

No freakin’ problem. We’ll just ban printers, too. Harry and Nancy

Ishmael on February 19, 2013 at 4:51 PM

I already drink Earl Grey, so give me a cup of that along with a phaser and a light saber (for close quarters action).

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:45 PM

My aim is not to let whatever’s left of whoever is after me get close enough for saber action.

Lily on February 19, 2013 at 4:52 PM

Every bail bale of MJ will have a box of magazines tucked inside.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:51 PM

FIFM

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:52 PM

Actually the accuracy for home gunsmithing has been there for a couple of decades. You can use the search engine of your choice and plug in: CNC home gunsmithing

Or Weaponeer if you are a dab hand with welding.

With the low cost 7×10 to 9×20 lathes, end mills, mill drills there has been an abundance of home machining going on just below the surface of things. There are people skilled enough to make their own receivers, barrels and turn their own brass… you know not just custom cartridge but custom designed weapon based on a custom designed cartridge.

Additive machining, particularly plasma deposition equipment for metals, will be the next frontier of home gunsmithing… but you can do that today with a spare couple of thousand, and most of that is on the DROs and computer, not the lathe or mill.

Plastic magazines? Hope the plastic spring works OK… oh, and if you need to make that you can look up such things as home foundry or Gingery… actually with Gingery you can start visiting scrap yards and dumps, rescue motors and start from the ground up if you had to.

This is why MT wants to get out of the Federal oversight for firearms: they have a few people that make 80% castings and leave it up to you to finish it and they want to do soup to nuts to sell to their neighbors, not over State lines. Other States are joining this move because home gunsmithing isn’t just for guys willing to buy an Atlas or Bridgeport but people who usually operate those rigs wanting to have some fun at home and apply their skills.

Really this sort of thing shouldn’t be news… but since it breaks the old paradigm it is. The 21st century is dawning and that means the old 20th century way of thinking about things is doornail dead from firearms to physicians, all that you know is about to be changed and not by government but a lot simply because government is making things too costly and complex.

ajacksonian on February 19, 2013 at 4:55 PM

No freakin’ problem. We’ll just ban printers, too. Harry and Nancy

Ishmael on February 19, 2013 at 4:51 PM

Now you’re talkin the ultimate libtard utopian dream – ban ALL technology, return us to the stone age, and kill off most the human infestation of Gaia. Ahhh – the perfect world…..

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:55 PM

My aim is not to let whatever’s left of whoever is after me get close enough for saber action.

Lily on February 19, 2013 at 4:52 PM

That’s a “just in case” item. Even snipers carry sidearms.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:56 PM

I linked to a specific comment in another thread about making a spring for a printed magazine but there are also some earlier comments by myself and others in that thread that explain the context.

I’ve done a cursory search on YouTube nothing stands out. If anybody out there on the Internet is looking for an inexpensive project that might get you some online attention….

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 4:56 PM

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:51 PM

Prohibition revisited. If Ogabe wants to create a massive illicit arms trade just ban them. Home brew and speakeasy equivalents will blossom.

Of course, Obama’s Chicago Mafia friends would be onto it like white on rice Mochelle onto a taxpayer lobster. So Ogabe might not want to interfere lest he end up like JFK after screwing the Mob out of their Havana casinos, hookers and loot.

viking01 on February 19, 2013 at 4:58 PM

That’s a “just in case” item. Even snipers carry sidearms.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:56 PM

I sidearm I could see. But I have no illusions about how well I would do in a saber duel with a guy. I’m no Laura Croft.

For one thing, my skin is too delicate to go running around the jungle in a tank top and short shorts.

Lily on February 19, 2013 at 5:02 PM

It is already possible, and perfectly legal, to build your own firearm. AR receiver blanks, 80% finished,..

novaculus on February 19, 2013 at 4:29 PM

I’ve got one on order, but even those are on massive backorder right now. This is how crazy things have gotten. On the upside, we now have the most armed citizenry in the entire world. And it’s only going to accelerate.

WhatSlushfund on February 19, 2013 at 4:42 PM

Ssssssh! Keep that sort of thin under your chapeau – if the BSM finds out they’re lose they’re ‘collective’ cookies.

BTW, here’s a useful site for that:

Considerations Before You Throw the Switch On That Frankenstein AR
http://www.guns.com/2011/03/09/considerations-before-you-bring-that-frankenstein-ar-to-life/

Galt2009 on February 19, 2013 at 5:03 PM

If anybody makes a hot-to mag spring video, make sure you get the word out. I would contact DefCad.org, which made the 3D printed magazine available, and you can send them a spring for testing. If it works in a standard AR-15 magazine, which I don’t own or else maybe I would consider trying it myself, then you could send it to DefCad to be tested in a magazine they printed.

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 5:03 PM

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 4:56 PM

Sorry to have misspelled your nom. I forgot the R in Rock was capitalized. Trying to give you props. ; )

Bmore on February 19, 2013 at 5:04 PM

There will be lots of Colorado tourists heading to Texas for “vacation” and coming back with boxes of magazines.

the times they are a changin’…dentarthurdent my older brother used to bring us Coors when he’d drive back from Colorado. Man we thought we were in high cotton, so nice to take a break from Schlitz and Lone Star for a couple of days.

Turns out we seldom drink it now.

DanMan on February 19, 2013 at 5:10 PM

Old newz.

The Donks have been 3-D printing voters and ballots for years.

Bruno Strozek on February 19, 2013 at 4:36 PM

Bruno Strozek:D*mmitt,D*mn those Diabolical DemoRats!(sarc):)

canopfor on February 19, 2013 at 5:13 PM

Now you’re talkin the ultimate libtard utopian dream – ban ALL technology, return us to the stone age, and kill off most the human infestation of Gaia. Ahhh – the perfect world…..

Ultimate goal of many in the green movement.

and not the 6 month old baby kind

DanMan on February 19, 2013 at 5:13 PM

Those plastic parts don’t hold up for very long.

And I’ve yet to see a plastic barrel that will handle about 50,000psi.

GarandFan on February 19, 2013 at 5:14 PM

Turns out we seldom drink it now.

DanMan on February 19, 2013 at 5:10 PM

Well, I don’t drink Coors (much), and I live in Colorado. We do have some good micro-brews though – Breckenridge Brewing, Bristol Brewery, Left-Hand, and several others.

Funny how people want what they can’t have – human nature. My wife had no interest in guns for most of her life – but now that the Dems want to make everything illegal, she wants her own AR and AK and lots and lots of high capacity magazines – and she readily admits it’s all because the Dems are trying to say she can’t have them. I’ve tried to tell her she also can’t have a 3-way with me and a hot swimsuit model – but that one isn’t working for me……
Hint to clueless Dems – Never piss off a hot-tempered, jealous, possessive redhead (most of those terms being redundant beyond “redhead”).

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 5:40 PM

Funny how people want what they can’t have – human nature. My wife had no interest in guns for most of her life – but now that the Dems want to make everything illegal, she wants her own AR and AK and lots and lots of high capacity magazines – and she readily admits it’s all because the Dems are trying to say she can’t have them.
dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 5:40 PM

Oh ya – and she wants a concealed carry permit, and is trying to figure out how she can “concealed carry” our new Draco AK Pistol (look it up if you don’t know about them).

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 5:43 PM

Sorry to have misspelled your nom. I forgot the R in Rock was capitalized. Trying to give you props. ; )

Bmore on February 19, 2013 at 5:04 PM

No offense taken, and thanks. I’ve been away, sorry I haven’t responded.

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 5:45 PM

I’ll be away a bit longer but will try to catch up in a bit.

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 5:45 PM

How would they know you manufactured it after the effective date of the law?

chemman on February 19, 2013 at 4:33 PM

The burden of proof will be on you to prove you owned them before the requisite date. Have receipts? Great! Now prove the exact magazines you have are the ones referenced in your receipts.

stvnscott on February 19, 2013 at 6:00 PM

It is relatively easy to make a magazine spring. All you need is enough spring wire (20ga?), and mandrel fashioned to the right shape and size, a propane torch, and some hand tools.

stvnscott on February 19, 2013 at 6:06 PM

The burden of proof will be on you to prove you owned them before the requisite date. Have receipts? Great! Now prove the exact magazines you have are the ones referenced in your receipts.

stvnscott on February 19, 2013 at 6:00 PM

The actual wording of the bill:

23 (b) IF A PERSON WHO IS ALLEGED TO HAVE VIOLATED SUBSECTION
24 (1) OF THIS SECTION ASSERTS THAT HE OR SHE IS PERMITTED TO LEGALLY
25 POSSESS A LARGE-CAPACITY MAGAZINE PURSUANT TO PARAGRAPH (a) OF
26 THIS SUBSECTION (2), THE PROSECUTION HAS THE BURDEN OF PROOF TO
27 REFUTE THE ASSERTION.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 6:15 PM

Simple, Ban 3D printers, or require crushing regulations. You don’t go into the totalitarian business halfway.

rrpjr on February 19, 2013 at 4:37 PM

That may not be possible either because people are already working on 3D printers that can replicate their own parts to make new, and even better, 3D printers.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RepRap

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 7:10 PM

This is simply to whip up hysteria, just like the ‘plastic’ gun fable from the late 80s

catmman on February 19, 2013 at 4:37 PM

No, it’s to point out that it’s impossible to stop people from getting them, extremely easily, so why ban 30 round magazines? If it’s absolutely, totally impossible to stop criminals with ill intent from printing them at home, why stop the good guys from owning them?

Of course the answer is because it’s not about gun control, it’s about people control. They may not be able to control criminals but they can control regular people. This just proves that the effort has nothing to do with keeping people safe and everything to do with tyranny.

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 7:14 PM

Ya right. So in the near future expect the drug cartels to diversify into the high capacity magazine business. Every bail of MJ will have a box of magazines tucked inside.

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 4:51 PM

:)

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 7:21 PM

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2013 at 6:15 PM

It looks like the door is wide open to me. Even with that wording, police and prosecutors have plenty of leeway to make your life miserable. And once they have confiscated your property and drained your finances, good luck getting any of it back.

stvnscott on February 19, 2013 at 7:24 PM

And I’ve yet to see a plastic barrel that will handle about 50,000psi.

GarandFan on February 19, 2013 at 5:14 PM

The Mythbusters made a canon out of duct tape so I think at some point 3D printed guns, although perhaps bulkier than traditional guns, will be feasible. People will design and test them at home and the best designs will evolve over time. Eventually they have the potential to be quite good, I think.

And if fascists ban gunpowder then people will design high caliber, 3D printed, air powered guns.

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 7:33 PM

This is simply to whip up hysteria, just like the ‘plastic’ gun fable from the late 80s

catmman on February 19, 2013 at 4:37 PM

Those plastic guns at the time were just a myth, as far as I know, but if it had been true they might have been able to ban them because they, presumably, would have been manufactured in a facility that could be raided and closed down, but thanks to 3D printers they can’t ban them. They can make them illegal for law abiding citizens, but they can’t stop people who want them from getting them by simply downloading and printing them.

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 7:38 PM

A $60 drill press and some commercially available jigs and you can make your own AR lower receiver. No need for CAD or 3D printing.

digitalintrigue on February 19, 2013 at 7:43 PM

If I were a 3D printer manufacturer in the home market I would make sure my next printer was capable of printing the popular gun parts that people will be wanting to print or lose business to more capable competitors.

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 8:15 PM

Btw, slightly OT, but awesome:

http://news.yahoo.com/gun-owners-discount-va-pizza-shop-111718083.html

Gun owners get a discount at Va. pizza shop

Associated Press – 58 mins ago

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) — A Virginia Beach pizza shop owner is showing his support for firearm A Virginia Beach pizza shop owner is showing his support for firearm rights by giving gun owners a 15 percent discount.

The discount is given to anyone who brings a gun or concealed handgun permit to All Around Pizzas and Deli.

Owner Jay Laze tells news media outlets that he’d planned on offering the discount for a limited time. But he says the response has been overwhelming and he might make it permanent.

Since the discount began last Friday, Laze says 80 percent of his customers have brought guns into the pizza shop. He says one customer came in with an AK-47.

Laze is a gun owner and says he’s always been a supporter of the right to carry firearms.

WhatSlushfund on February 19, 2013 at 8:28 PM

Wonder if unions will embrace the 3-D printer? It won’t be just guns that are replicated – just the beginning of the nightmare for big brother.

InTheBellyoftheBeast on February 19, 2013 at 8:36 PM

And I’ve yet to see a plastic barrel that will handle about 50,000psi.

GarandFan on February 19, 2013 at 5:14 PM

The Mythbusters made a canon out of duct tape so I think at some point 3D printed guns, although perhaps bulkier than traditional guns, will be feasible. People will design and test them at home and the best designs will evolve over time. Eventually they have the potential to be quite good, I think.

And if fascists ban gunpowder then people will design high caliber, 3D printed, air powered guns.

FloatingRock on February 19, 2013 at 7:33 PM

1. The original AR-10 in 7.62 x 51mm had a barrel consisting of a stainless-steel liner inside a fiberglass winding. It would burst on occasion, so they later went to an all-steel barrel.

Today, we have much tougher materials, like boron-graphite composites, that would make such a “wrapped” barrel very tough and durable. As to access, it’s what they make high-priced fishing rods out of, as well as chassis platforms for race cars. I doubt that the raw materials are that hard to obtain.

2. Banning gunpowder is impossible. It’s a nitrate-based compound that can be manufactured by anyone with the necessary chemical knowledge. The formulas can be found on the internet, or in any reasonably good book on commercial chemistry.

Or even rocketry; Willy Ley’s book Rockets, Missiles, and Space Travel (1954) devoted an entire chapter to solid-rocket propellant formulations. That “solid propellant” is…smokeless powder.

Science is like a genie. Once it’s out of the bottle, there’s no way to stuff it back in again.

clear ether

eon

eon on February 19, 2013 at 9:46 PM

2. Banning gunpowder is impossible. It’s a nitrate-based compound that can be manufactured by anyone with the necessary chemical knowledge. The formulas can be found on the internet, or in any reasonably good book on commercial chemistry.

Or even rocketry; Willy Ley’s book Rockets, Missiles, and Space Travel (1954) devoted an entire chapter to solid-rocket propellant formulations. That “solid propellant” is…smokeless powder.

Science is like a genie. Once it’s out of the bottle, there’s no way to stuff it back in again.

clear ether

eon

eon on February 19, 2013 at 9:46 PM

It’s more complicated than that. What about primers? It’s possible to synthesize lead styphnate, but you have to know what you are doing. Other primer chemicals such as lead azide and mercury fulminate are even more sensitive and dangerous to play with.

Rich H on February 19, 2013 at 11:36 PM

Old newz.

The Donks have been 3-D printing voters and ballots for years.

Bruno Strozek on February 19, 2013 at 4:36 PM

.
Tough to beat . . . . . . I’m pronouncing “thread winner”.

listens2glenn on February 20, 2013 at 12:42 AM

Maybe now I can get a BRAND NEW:

Winchester M12 (12 ga)

Winchester M42

Savage M99
, take-down model, Chambered for .308 Win, with the straight “pistol grip” stock and corresponding lever, the lower ‘lever-locking’ safety, and steel butt plate with the “Savage Arms” logo engraved or etched into it.
.
OH, YEAH ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

listens2glenn on February 20, 2013 at 1:03 AM

Science is like a genie. Once it’s out of the bottle, there’s no way to stuff it back in again.

eon on February 19, 2013 at 9:46 PM

…Except for a technologically enforced totalitarian state.

FloatingRock on February 20, 2013 at 1:36 AM

Science is like a genie. Once it’s out of the bottle, there’s no way to stuff it back in again.

eon on February 19, 2013 at 9:46 PM

.
…Except for a technologically enforced totalitarian state.

FloatingRock on February 20, 2013 at 1:36 AM

.
That just means we “commoners” don’t get to use it. It’s still “out-of-the-bottle”, permanently.

listens2glenn on February 20, 2013 at 2:27 AM

An air-powered rifle doesn’t transfer nearly as much heat to the barrel as gunpowder does. It seems like air rifles might be a better place to start for a potentially complete 3D printable gun. I wonder how many pellets could be fired through a rifled, plastic barrel before it degrades too much? Perhaps a reduced rifling ratio would reduce the stress on the barrel, reducing accuracy but improving longevity. And if rifling is just too much to expect from plastic, a smooth bore might still be possible until materials improve. I mentioned it last but a smooth bore would be the place to start testing.

People should use appropriate safety precautions to test their 3D printed creations.

It might be too early for the technology to create an air gun
outright but perhaps it could be used to print some key components short of the barrel, or perhaps a plastic barrel could be reinforced with carbon fiber, as somebody mentioned above.

FloatingRock on February 20, 2013 at 2:32 AM

The automotive bedliner that Mythbusters has tested on a few occasions might be a good way to increase the tensile strength if applied to the outside of the barrel or magazine. I’ve never worked with the material so perhaps I’m wrong. Again, take extreme safety precautions to test anything with compressed air or gunpowder and projectiles. Even springs can be dangerous.

I don’t’ have any experience with 3D printers but just in case all the layers of 3D printed objects don’t fuse perfectly and there are small air pockets between layers, perhaps dipping it in thin CA glue, or something more suitable, would help unify the part and improve it’s strength and air proof-ness. (Or maybe it will melt the plastic.) A blast of compressed air would hopefully blow out the excess CA to prevent fouling, but take extreme safety precaution not to blow compressed air into the soaking container full of thin CA (superglue), because it would splash up in a potentially dangerous fashion. Wear eye protection and keep the compressed air away from the CA bath. It would probably help to print an oversize barrel to allow for a thin layer of CA and any other coating to avoid having to ream the inside of the barrel.

Perhaps baking the part, (before soaking in CA), might help the layers fuse and improve strength. A very precise, straight dowel might be inserted in the barrel to make sure it doesn’t deform when reheated. Or perhaps reheating will weaken it, I’m not sure.

I don’t know if these are good or bad ideas but I thought I’d throw them.

FloatingRock on February 20, 2013 at 4:10 AM

A more applicable Mythbusters video about bedliner.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JOXrpCLCJg

FloatingRock on February 20, 2013 at 4:31 AM

FloatingRock on February 20, 2013 at 4:10 AM

I have considered this. Perhaps the best way to strengthen the part would be to decrease its thickness on its exterior, wrap the exterior with thin denim soaked in the same resin used in carbon fiber manufacture. You could then vacuum cure it just as if it were a CF part. Strong as hell.

ROCnPhilly on February 20, 2013 at 6:57 AM

Expect to see some regulatory changes. Barrels are the part of a firearm that take the most expensive commitment to manufacture. There is no way currently for a 3D printer hobbyist to print a barrel.

Expect some well meaning nanny to push for the BATF to require the serialization of barrels to prevent what was shown in this video.

applebutter on February 20, 2013 at 7:25 AM

It’s more complicated than that. What about primers? It’s possible to synthesize lead styphnate, but you have to know what you are doing. Other primer chemicals such as lead azide and mercury fulminate are even more sensitive and dangerous to play with.

Rich H on February 19, 2013 at 11:36 PM

Lead picrate is easier to make than any of the above. And the basic material for making it starts with aspirin. See the U.S. Army Improvised Munitions Handbook, formerly the CIA Improvised Munitions Black Book, published by Skyhorse Books, and available from them or from Edward R. Hamilton Booksellers most recently. (HamiltonBook.com)

Expect to see some regulatory changes. Barrels are the part of a firearm that take the most expensive commitment to manufacture. There is no way currently for a 3D printer hobbyist to print a barrel.

Expect some well meaning nanny to push for the BATF to require the serialization of barrels to prevent what was shown in this video.

applebutter on February 20, 2013 at 7:25 AM

A barrel is ultimately simply a tube of material with sufficient tensile strength to withstand pressure. In the Philippines, “Paltik” weapons are often made with barrels of heavy-wall seamless metal tubing, or plain steel pipe. Fully-automatic shotguns working much like the Sten or M3 SMGs were made using Jeep (TM) steering-wheel shaft tubing for the barrel.

If all else fails, steel rod can be bored out to make a barrel. Or, as with most modern handguns, a steel block can be machined down, inside and out, to the correct shape.

If even that is verboten, consider what can be done with a “primitive” forge.

The only way to ban guns is to ban all technology. Which probably helps explain the left’s mania for Rousseauian “noble savage” primitivism. For everyone except themselves, that is.

Oh, BTW; thanks to PJM’s new registration system, which for some reason refuses to accept my password (which they gave me), I am apparently no longer going to be able to post there. So anyone with even a remote interest in anything I have to say will have to come to HotAir, for the nonce at least.

cheers

eon

eon on February 20, 2013 at 8:45 AM

Never doubt what the propeller-heads can do when challenged.

I remember when in the Star Trek movie (Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, the one when they go back in time) Capt. Kirk pulls out his communicator. His lunch date asks him what it is and Kirk responds that he works for the phone company and his communicator is an experimental model. Big laugh right. No laugh today.

For the many misuses of technology, it tends to favor individual freedom. I have no doubt that metal “printing” is not far off and eventually will be inexpensive. Then any gun ban will be meaningless and the masses will stay armed, no matter what the Libs want.

bartbeast on February 20, 2013 at 9:03 AM

great stuff eon. I always learn from your posts. I’m getting my hands on those books.

WhatSlushfund on February 20, 2013 at 12:11 PM

Obama’s easy answer….BAN 3-d PRINTERS…..

nonstopca on February 20, 2013 at 1:26 PM