In coming decades you’ll be able to 3D print a reliable gun

In coming decades you’ll be able to 3D print a reliable gun. No license. No background check. If you’re really crafty, you might even collect up some saltpeter, sulfur, and charcoal to make your own ammo. Heck, you can even print a gun today if you only need to fire 6 bullets. (cf. WikiWeapon)  This is the Star Trek replicator future that we will find ourselves in, ready or not.


Can we stop talking about gun control & instead focus on the mental health of the crazies who would resort to killing sprees? Banning guns isn’t a bandage that will magically fix everything. The unstable people will switch to improvised munitions (Unibomber, Oklahoma City), chemicals (sarin), biologicals (anthrax), or airplanes (the Austin IRS building in 2010 — I’m leaving 9/11 out of this). Or maybe crossbows, fire axes, tazers, dirty bombs, claymore mines.  Much of that stuff is on the internet and the instructions are often easily understood by anyone with a highschool level education.  What we have here in the US is a large number of social problems.

Or should we ban 3D printers because it might be possible for someone to manufacture a gun without a license or a knife that passes through metal detectors?  Or maybe we just ban the internet?  There has to be a technical fix to a social problem, right?

Posted in: MakerBot

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Brian Enigma

Brian Enigma is a Portlander, manipulator of atoms & bits, minor-league blogger, and all-around great guy. He typically writes about the interesting “maker” projects he's working on, but sometimes veers off into puzzles, software, games, local news, and current events.

2 thoughts on “In coming decades you’ll be able to 3D print a reliable gun”

    1. Yeah, that guy testing the lower-receiver in the video had some pretty big balls. I would have done that test Mythbusters-style: from behind a thick plexiglass wall, gun clamped to a bench, remote pull-cord attached to the trigger.

      Still — pretty impressive for plastic. And now you have resin-based printers and Shapeways even prints in metal.

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