The world's first 3D Printed gun was successfully tested on Saturday last week at a firing range south of Austin, Texas. Its blueprints were then available to public on Monday and more than 100,000 people have already downloaded the blueprints.
Two journalists from the British newspaper The Mail downloaded the blueprints, built the gun which is capable of firing a live round, and then smuggled it on to an Eurostar train on last Friday.
No surprise, they "passed completely unchallenged through strict airport-style security to carry the gun on to a London to Paris service in the weekend rush-hour." writes The Mail.
The two reporters, Simon Murphy and Russell Myers bought a £1,700 3D Systems' CubeX 3D printer from internet. In less than 36 hours they had printed out the 15 plastic components of the gun. The only metal part, the firing pin was bought from a local hardware shop. Using some simple DIY tools it took them only a few minutes to assemble the whole pistol.
(Image credit: Daily Mail)
To test the security procedures at St Pancras International Station, they split the 3D printed gun into three pieces and concealed in their clothing. Because all the parts are plastic, the metal detectors at the train station were not triggered.
After boarding the two reporters were able to assemble the pieces to create a fully functional gun in just 30 seconds. This pistol, known as the Liberator, is capable of firing a deadly 0.38-calibre bullet.
(Image credit: Daily Mail)
The test presents a huge problem for security services around the world. When such a plastic gun is broken down into parts, they are just too difficult to be detected with the currently methods used for security.
British security experts and politicians said they were horrified at the implications of this investigation, writes the reporters. The train operator began an urgent investigation into the security breach as experts called for airports and public buildings to review their procedures.
Though the Office of Defense Trade Controls Compliance demanded Defense Distributed to remove the blueprints of 3D printable gun for their online site, it was then immediatealy available via the Pirate Bay file-sharing website and Auckland, New Zealand based Dotcom's Mega website. But Kim Dotcom, founder of Megaupload and its successor site, Mega, asked his staff to delete the public files.
He said to Radio New Zealand, ""I think it's a serious threat to security of the community. I think it's scary that people can print 3D guns that can't even be detected by metal detectors ... This should concern everybody."
The files still remained in private cloud storage on the website, Dotcom said.
Dotcom rose to fame as a hacker and internet entrepreneur. He is currently battling the US government for charges of criminal copyright infringement in relation to his Megaupload website. Megaupload was shut down in 2012 and one year later Domcom launched "Mega", a cloud storage service that uses encryption to protect users from government or third party "spies" from invading users' privacy.
Dotcom said he was not contacted by the US government, but became aware of its threat to security.
"Authorities should be extremely worried. The obvious danger is that if you have the ability to print out a gun on a 3D printer from a blueprint downloaded online, then the probability is that a terrorist has that capability as well. which could have devastating consequences. They could potentially cause a problem at 38,000ft that would cause the aircraft to crash or be hijacked." says Chris Yates, an aviation security analyst.
Posted in 3D Printing Applications
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amiravaznia wrote at 11/12/2013 1:24:25 PM:
It was so good I live in Iran.Yousry website Mabzn. Please answer it!
Wes wrote at 5/13/2013 11:55:57 PM:
I would like to know what the repeated accuracy of this gun is at 10 or 20 feet. Am guessing you would need to print a new barrel for each bullet fired. Guess we all will be traveling naked via public transportation soon.
jd90 wrote at 5/13/2013 11:41:27 PM:
I want to see if they get the bullet and firing pin past the sensors. The gun is worthless with either of those two parts missing.
WTF wrote at 5/13/2013 5:25:06 PM:
Dumb ass trying to spread fear... people can die from a pen... but I see it on train all the time.
Bri wrote at 5/13/2013 3:44:48 PM:
"We did not attempt to smuggle the firing pin or bullet for safety and legal reasons, but small metal items could be easily concealed." Yeah no bullet or firing pin. This was a staged PR stunt by journalist stooges.
trothem wrote at 5/13/2013 10:50:00 AM:
The bullet is a plastic bullet also ? 'couse a metal bullet can be detected !
Ghetto Brain Surgeon wrote at 5/13/2013 4:19:58 AM:
What I load of hype, I could kill more people with a metal pen that security would allow me to carry.
dan wrote at 5/12/2013 10:27:47 PM:
They could potentially cause a problem at 38,000ft that would cause the aircraft to crash or be hijacked." .. history teaches us `they` dont need a 3d printed gun to do this..
AyeBraine wrote at 5/12/2013 9:29:24 PM:
Yeah, and did they take even a single round of ammunition with them? If so, how did they obtain it? Was it as easy to take it through? =)
beverageexpert wrote at 5/12/2013 8:22:38 PM:
CornGolem wrote at 5/12/2013 7:44:39 PM:
Eurostar ? go onboard a plane, chicken
jd90 wrote at 5/12/2013 5:53:41 PM:
Given history, a razor blade is a problem. I don't think 3D printing makes building a plastic gun any easier in reality, it's just that it's something that people are more comfortable, they think pressing "print" will get you a gun.
Todd wrote at 5/12/2013 5:38:16 PM:
Ok, Now how far would you get with one .38 cal round? " The pen is mightier than the sword " By the English author Edward Bulwer-Lytton in 1839. Come on people while everyone is cowering in the corner about a what if scenario! Your goverments are taking your rights away and in return your thinking your being protected! "People willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both"
3d printing enthusiast wrote at 5/12/2013 4:39:54 PM:
So what that he printed it, I dare him to fire it... he will quickly loose the ability to type. It is nothing more than a toy! Stop giving bad press for 3d printing technology.
Mark43rd wrote at 5/12/2013 4:36:52 PM:
Undetectable without ammunition
Annon wrote at 5/12/2013 4:20:37 PM:
But did they bring any ammo with them?
lab wrote at 5/12/2013 4:07:18 PM:
They did NOT smuggle bullets or the trigger pin!