This week the "Wiki Weapon" test-fired an AR-15 assault rifle made with a 3D printed lower receiver and had six successful shots. Though some gun experts have questioned whether the 3D printed plastics could stand the stresses of a gun firing, theoretically in the very near future any 3D printer owner is able to print any gun parts at home. In US you can legally manufacture a firearm as long as you don't manufacture it for sale, but in all the others countries there are still strict gun laws. 3D printed gun could indeed disrupt gun control. What will happen when guns could be spread beyond all control? Up to now no government laws is revised to catch up the new technology and this is still a grey area under US law and the laws of other countries.
On Friday Steve Israel, the U.S. Representative for New York's 2nd congressional district commented on the "Wiki Weapon" and 3D printed gun. "It is just a matter of time before these three dimensional printers will be able to replicate an entire gun." said Israel at a news conference at the security checkpoint at Long Island MacArthur Airport.
(Photo credit: Joseph D. Sullivan)
"And that firearm will be able to be brought through this security line, through the metal detector, and because there will be no metal to be detected, firearms will be brought on planes without anyone's knowledge."
What he mentioned here was "the Undetectable Firearms Act of 1988", which bans the possession and manufacturing of firearms that can pass undetected through airport security. The law was renewed in 2003 by President George W. Bush and is slated to expire in December 2013.
Israel said he will introduce the law's renewal in Congress next week, "to renew a federal ban on plastic guns that can evade detection at airports, including weapons made partially with 3D printers right out of "Star Trek," the congressman said.
3D printers could bring about the proliferation of guns "in our children's bedrooms, in basements and in dorm rooms." said James Burke, Suffolk County Police Chief of Department, "With the prices of these printers under $1,000, I think anyone can imagine the rise of an amateur gun maker in our community."
Thanks Jim Q. for the tip!
Posted in 3D Printing Technology
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anonymous wrote at 1/16/2013 6:39:54 AM:
Wouldn't the metal detector pick up the bullets? Just sayin' , it's never been about airport "security" it's about controlling the law abiding citizens! You think a terrorist is gonna listen to some silly little law thought up by some politician and written down in the law books f**k no
Jack Jarvis wrote at 12/24/2012 2:38:56 AM:
Wow Steve Israel has gone full retard. It's obvious that he has no idea how guns work.
Red_Blue wrote at 12/14/2012 11:41:00 AM:
To understand this development, you need to understand US gun laws. While there is no conceivable technology know to make parts strong enough to handle the chamber pressures of a firearm (basically the barrel and the breech closing mechanism, in the AR that is the bolt and the bolt carrier) from non-metallic printable materials, these parts are unregulated. Only the lower receiver (which was made in this project) is regulated, mostly because it holds the trigger mechanism which determines the type of action (fully automatic “legal machine gun” or a self loading or semi-automatic). So if you can make the lower receiver yourself, you can buy the other unregulated parts outside of legal gun control. I suspect this will lead to attempts to regulate more firearm parts. In other parts of the world, more essential parts are regulated, numbered, tracked and licensed. Typically the parts you cannot get past government control are the barrel and the breech closing mechanism, the so called “pressure bearing parts”. The anti-gun nuts would love to close that “loophole” in US gun legistlation, to be able to regulate more essential firearm parts, because regulating just the receivers or frames is no longer effective. There have been a lot of so called “free gun” or “rogue gun” projects, which aim in making very easy firearm building instructions, that will allow building of effective self defense firearms with typical home shop tools and home depot materials. The 3D printer is basically a cheaper version of a 3D CNC mill, which are becoming more affordable each year. With a small CNC you can easily make the breech closing mechanism, which leaves only the barrel to be acquired from other sources. Earlier free gun projects and blueprints tended to use much simpler technologies, such as laminated metals, folded and riveted sheets, sawing instead of cutting operations, etc. With these plans you can make effective long range weapons with access to barrels and effective short range weapons (shotguns, smoothbore = unrifled guns) with access to standard steel tubing. However, probably the easiest method of controlling effective firearms availability is the control of ammunition. It's much more difficult (and hazardous) to make smokeless gun powder and especially primers for modern cartridges than the firearms themselves. Strictly controlling complete ammunition and primers would be enough to bring the level of technology attainable with easily home manufactured weapons back about 150 years to black powder and primerless ignition.
SGT commonsense wrote at 12/10/2012 10:34:57 PM:
Also notice... the law won't stop you using injection molded polymers OR Machined Plastic's to make a lower. http://www.lw15.com/ Only addive tech is affected. Seams like this artical was written by an antigun thingaverse troll because notice how the 3d printer supporter Is a clear Bigoted anti gun Democrat and left out the political leanings of the congressman in question Given rampant Bigoted anti gunners on every 3d printing related forum.... It's no supprise that some details got left out... the author probly just wants someone he disagrees with arrested IMHO ooooh and i love how the Cop is acting like this is going to lead to a mass in pooring of guns into his county cause "they're so damn cheep" any one who could build a 3d printer could probly construct a CNC mill and make an aluminum lower just as easily or a HDPE lower.... which is as metalic as a 3d printed lower.
SGT commonsense wrote at 12/10/2012 8:41:45 AM:
Bull shit he wants to bann the ability to make guns. guns will all ways have metal parts THEY have to those metal parts will all ways trip metal detectors.
FactsNotFallacies wrote at 12/10/2012 6:29:01 AM:
Politicians still believe in the bs myth of the "plastic" gun... But at least support for gun control appears to be at an all time low right now.
paindoc wrote at 12/9/2012 7:16:51 PM:
Wow. Like the entire gun is made out of plastic. Its great, these people only have to listen to the highlights of the news in order to make judgments on laws that affect our country. Wonderful, just wonderful.
jason wrote at 12/9/2012 5:41:50 AM:
are people stupid the ammo it self is metal good luck getting a clip though metal detectors
Al wrote at 12/8/2012 9:54:53 PM:
Odd, because if you would have looked one picture down on the official website you could see the parts they had added in. Only the lower receiver was "non-metallic", however they had added metal to that. This is more of an over reaction without getting the information, or maybe it is purposely redacted information to help his argument.